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Delight is in the detail at Wyllie Cottage

17 Oct 2016

Delight is in the detail at Wyllie Cottage

The final touches to restore the 144 year-old Wyllie Cottage are due to be completed by the end of the month.

The cottage was closed in November last year to undergo restoration work to replicate the architectural features of its early colonial heritage, and make upgrades to preserve the building.

“It’s looking vastly different to what it was 10 months ago,” says contracts and assets manager Garrett Blair.

A noticeable change on the exterior of the building is the replacement of shingle roof and union jack verandah for corrugated iron, installing sash windows and ornate detailing, and a paint job in heritage colour scheme.

“Bringing in specialist materials to fit with the era, along with some wild weather that undid some work while the verandah was built, has pushed our timeframes to finish the project back a bit,” says Mr Blair.

“But we’re thrilled with what the contractors have achieved, conserving much of the original building and their attention to the fine details.”

Renovations include putting back in period interior doors and hardware fittings.

Outside, modified drainage is complete and a path is prepared for exterior landscaping to be finished off.

Though they weren’t of the day, upgrades to electrics and new sprinklers have been also been fitted.

UV window treatments that will help to preserve the building and exhibits inside are still to be completed.

“The UV film is clear so hardly noticeable, but can cut out 99% ultra violet light, some heat and acts as a security film too. It will be the last job done after painting is finished.”

The opening date is yet to be confirmed as Tairawhiti Museum want to ensure the fit-out reflects the heritage value of the cottage.

The museum received a grant from Eastland Community Trust to curate a new exhibition in the cottage and over the past months they’ve been collating a history of inhabitants of the cottage.

Mr Blair says an opening date will be finalised soon.