This building was constructed in 1942 as part of the US Marines camp in Titahi Bay. It is the last structure left of those buildings purpose-built during WWII for the eight US Marines camps strung along the coast north of Wellington and has high architectural value as well as historical and cultural values. The Porirua Little Theatre which has been in this building since 1970 has had to vacate because of its poor condition and the council is currently considering its future including possible demolition. It is listed on the Porirua City Council’s (PCC) Historic Heritage schedule #HHB019. Click on the link below to visit the PCC website for more information about the building and the process:
US Marines Hall (Former), Titahi Bay
In historical terms, the association with the US Marines is the building’s most significant quality. It directly illustrates New Zealand’s role in the Pacific war and our modern association with the United States which began at that time. This wartime association still resonates strongly today, as shown by the strong community interest and participation in the 70th anniversary celebrations of the Marines’ arrival.
Historic Places Wellington has opposed an application by owner Porirua City Council for resource consent to demolish this building. UPDATE, April 2015: We are pleased to hear that the decision to demolish the hall is likely to be postponed to to allow Porirua Little Theatre time to further develop a business case for repair and reinstatement of the building using a shared responsibility funding model.
Photograph by Priscilla Williams