Story: Class

Two Wellington houses

Two Wellington houses

These houses were likely to be inhabited by families from different social groupings in the late 1940s and early 1950s. The top house was designed by an architect, Cedric Firth, and was located in an affluent suburb of Lowry Bay. The house had sea views and a roof garden, and was owned by a member of a successful Wellington business family, the Vances. The bottom house was a state house in Naenae, Lower Hutt. It was a plain wooden bungalow, and the occupant was a returned soldier. Yet, despite their different origins and location, the contrast in terms of size and comfort was not great by international standards.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library, Firth Family Papers (MS-Papers-1491) (top); John Dobrée Pascoe Collection (PAColl-0783) (bottom)
Reference: PA Coll-5870-4-01 (top); 1/4-001168-F (bottom);
Photograph by Dennis Hodgson (top); John Dobrée Pascoe (bottom)

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Jock Phillips, 'Class - A middle-class society? – material differences, 1890 to 1970', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 18 July 2024)

Story by Jock Phillips, published 5 May 2011, reviewed & revised 22 May 2018