Work set to start to bring new life to Pukekohe War Memorial Town Hall

Publish Date : 20 Mar 2023
Town Hall2

Major restoration work to upgrade Pukekohe War Memorial Town Hall will soon begin, with the first stage addressing fears over the building’s vulnerability to earthquakes.

Franklin Local Board chair Angela Fulljames says investigations have revealed the building is earthquake-prone and has weather-tightness issues.

“On top of that, asbestos has been found and that is a material that has to be handled carefully because of the obvious health risks involved.

“Then there are also issues with both internal and external joinery, which will require full refurbishment, and after all that work is done, the hall will still need to be fully redecorated inside and out too.”

Pukekohe War Memorial Town Hall is a complex structure made up of three connected sections. The main hall and second hall were originally built in the 1950s, with the Returned Service’s Association added in the 1960s.

Franklin Ward Councillor Andy Baker says the building, at the heart of the community for generations, has a Category B historic heritage place in Auckland’s Unitary Plan Schedule of Historic Heritage.

“There would not be many people in the area who haven’t attended an Anzac Day service, a public meeting, a family celebration, or another event at the town hall. We need to step up so that it can remain at the heart of our community.”

Fulljames says a lot of work has gone in around planning seismic strengthening of the main hall, small hall and RSA clubrooms.

“That work is complex and is going to include replacing brick infill sections of wall, reinforcing walls by filling voids with concrete, timber and steel bracing to the sub-floor and roof, and installing cavity ties.

“After we have completed the seismic strengthening phase, we will be able to move on to replacing roofing, including getting rid of the existing asbestos sheet roof and replacing it with corrugated steel.”

The restoration project will also include interior remediation and various repair work, enclosure on the western porch, providing covered access between the main hall and RSA clubrooms, and infilling windows to the north and west porch space openings.

“We’ll also be adding a sign – Pukekohe War Memorial - to the western façade because this building is more than a town hall, it is a monument to the local people who have served their country in wartime,” Fulljames says.

Exterior door and window joinery repair and general interior refurbishment will complete the project.

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