Story: Public, commercial and church architecture

Canterbury Provincial Buildings plan

This is a bird's-eye view of Benjamin Mountfort's 1855 design for the Canterbury Provincial Council Buildings. The mainly wooden building was centred on a quadrangle and, in the Gothic revival manner, featured steeply pitched roofs and soaring towers. Not all of the plan was realised. The quadrangle was not fully enclosed and the octagonal turret on the left was not built. Mountfort's impressive stone council chambers were built in 1864–65, and was regarded as New Zealand's best example of high Victorian Gothic architecture. Its collapse in the 2011 Christchurch earthquake was seen as a great cultural loss, and the city authorities were hopeful that it could eventually be rebuilt. 

Using this item

Canterbury Museum
Reference: 19XX.2.324
Drawing by Benjamin Woolfield Mountfort

Permission of Canterbury Museum, Rolleston Avenue, Christchurch, New Zealand must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Ben Schrader, 'Public, commercial and church architecture - Revivalist architecture: 1830s to 1860', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 25 June 2024)

Story by Ben Schrader, published 22 Oct 2014