Albert Park & Auckland University, Auckland
Albert Park was formed from the Albert Barracks, which originated in 1846 to fend off possible attacks from Hone Heke. The barracks were surrounded by a bluestone wall which enclosed over nine hectares of land. There is still a small portion of this wall remaining in the University grounds. The barracks were dismantle during the 1870’s and the land was set aside for public use. A competition was held in 1881 to design a park and was won by Slater and Goldie. A park keepers lodge was built in 1882 just as the park was starting to take form. It later became the home of the City Librarian, then the Fillmore family for some 35 years.
Sir George Grey was an significant British colonial diplomat and politician. He was also governor twice of New Zealand during the years1845-1853 and 1861-1868. He was also the last superintendent of Auckland 1875-1876 and the premier of New Zealand 1877-1879. He actively encouraged the Europeanisation of Maori and also the understanding of the Maori culture by the Pakeha (white) settlers. Originally the statue was erected at the junction between Queen Street and Grey’s Avenue but was later transferred to Albert Park in 1922. In 1986 the statues head was removed by Maori rights protesters but was replaced with a likeness the following year.
Queen Victoria statue was unveiled in 1899 to mark the sixtieth jubilee of her reign. It was the first statue of her in the country. This was erected in 1897 to commemorate the 60th jubilee of her reign. It was to symbolise the strength of the colony's patriotic feeling. It was created by FJ Williamson and was the first statue of Victoria in the country.
The old Arts Building of the University is a highly original landmark. It was built between 1923 and 1926. The designers were Roy Lippincott and his partner Edward Billson. The main block has a highly distinctive clock tower. The style is described as an elegant Arts and Crafts interpretation of Perpendicular Gothic and was much criticised for being insufficiently 'English'.
The floral clock in Albert Park was installed in 1953 to mark the first visit of Queen Elizabeth II. It was donated by the Laidlaw family who are the founders of the Farmers Trading Company here – a long-time department store. The clock is electrically powered.
The old band rotunda was designed by James Slater and built in 1901. It replaced an earlier one that was erected in another area of the park. When the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour, all the old ornamental guns were buried and air raid shelters and tunnels were dug under the park. One of the tunnels actually intersects the paths around the rotunda like a spoke and stops directly under the rotunda.
The University of Auckland is located right in the heart of Auckland and was established in 1883. There are seven faculties on three campuses which include Architecture, Property, Planning and Fine Arts, Arts, Business and Economics, Engineering, Law, Medical and Health Sciences and Science. Some 26,000 students attend this university.
We visited James Slater Albert Park on the way back to our hotel from Parnell Village; he was the winning designer of the park. The park is a typical of Victorian era.
On the day there were people doing different activities, some were playing touch football, Frisbee, walking the dog, reading a book, chatting amongst themselves and most laying on the grass sun baking, or sitting on the bench.
As you walked on the footpaths there are many large native trees with flower bed on the edges, flower beds that looklike a clock.
You’ll see fountain statues surrounded by red flowers, people sleeping inside the rotunda, young mother pushing a pram with the grandmother close by.
I thought it was actually a quite busy and beautiful scenic park.
The University of Auckland is New Zealand's largest university. It was established in 1883 and has now eight faculties on six campuses, and more than 33,500 students.
The range of programmes include Arts, Business, Education, Music, Teacher Training and Special Education, Architecture, Planning, Nursing, Creative and Performing Arts, Theology, Science, Information Management, Engineering, Medicine, Optometry, Food and Wine Science, Property, Law, Fine and Visual Arts and Pharmacy.
Its city campus hosts the administration building with the impressive Clock Tower that is overlooking the city centre from a hill.
The University is located in the oldest park of the city. It sits on a hill overlooking the downtown area. Among the places worth a visit are the Clock Tower and the remains of a wall fo the albert barracks. The old government building is also within the university grounds.
Auckland was the original seat of government in New Zealand on 1856. The capital was later transferred to Wellington on 1865. The original seat of government still sits in Auckland University and is being used for various university functions.
These are some of the oldest houses in Auckland and are next to Albert Park and Auckland University. A few of these houses have been converted to museums, while the others were converted and currently being used as university offices.
Albert Park sits just two blocks up behind Queen Street and next to the University of Auckland. It is a great relaxing area to take your lunch or go for a stroll around the gardens. There are fountains and statues and a band rotunda where free concerts are held on the weekends in Summer.
The rotunda located near the south end of the park. It was built in 1901 and design by James Slater. He was also the winner of the original design competition for Albert Park.
This park is located at east of downtown, it provides great views of the city. It is also next door to Auckland University.