The first and oldest infant’s classroom in Otago is in imminent danger of being moved to Christchurch!
The Arthur Street School infants’ building, a Category 2 historic place, is tucked away in City Rise, Dunedin. Both the building and site hold significant historical value.
At the time of construction in 1887, the recent introduction of free, secular education had seen the school's role swell. A "substantial and commodious infant department" was seen as a way to combat overcrowding and protect the health of the school's youngest learners. The model was subsequently used around the country.
As part of Arthur Street School's redevelopment, the Ministry of Education plans to move the building from its current site, and is currently in discussions with Ferrymead Heritage Park in Christchurch as a potential relocation option.
The Trust strongly feels that removal from its original site would significantly take away from the building's authenticity. Instead, we would like to see it retained on its present site, and adapted for sustainable reuse in a way that would guarantee its future.
Please help by signing our petition at https://chng.it/CLPBvLDm to retain this treasured link to our past.
Photo credit: ODT Stephen Jaquiery