Alexandra Courthouse

In Alexandra, where as much has changed as has stayed the same, the Courthouse has not moved an inch since it was built here, from tradtional stone, in 1878. What has changed is the clientele, this is now named the Courthouse Cafe, so probably attracts more of the middle of the market than the lawyers and the criminals of olde.

Goldminers and goldmining days being a little lawless, the New Zealand response to the Californian and Australian experience was to whack up a courthouse and move in some policemen smartly, and that is what happened here. This one was made from traditional schist, and features the double hung sash windows of the day, as well as a (still standard) corrugated iron roof. There are 1906 additions out the back but the toilet block attened by cafe visitors is original. 

Due to it's age, the building has attracted Heritage Status not long after the processes of law moved out in the 1970s. First offices, then a gallery here made way for the current, thriving cafe. DoC has done a heritage assessment

Have a peek around the corner to see the BNZ, the bank itself still residing in the colonial monument built for it over a century ago, and other stone buildings scattered around Alex. An Historical town, but still humming, these days more to the beat of the tourist and holiday trade than the gold rush. 

Image Credit: Department of Conservation 

 

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