This stout looking building sits firmly on the North West corner of North St and Stafford Street.
It was originally built as a commercial prospect, 3 shops with accommodation above, by James Shepherd, who was a book keeper at that time for George Rhodes of Levels station.
When the town was subdivided Shepherd was offered first choice of sections and chose this site as he considered the junction of Government Town and Rhodes Town on the main road would be a good business site. It became known as Shepherd’s Corner. Another factor was that there was a spring on the property. Old Timaru maps show there was a marsh or swamp opposite.
Upon opening in February 1880 two of the shops were newly occupied. Mrs Tichbon opened a millinery and fancy drapery business while Mr Tichbon opened a practical upholstery business. In the third shop James Shepherd ran a successful grocery shop for many years.
It was designed by architect D West and constructed in the Victorian style out of Bluestone, Brick and plaster in 1879.
It is a corner building and it’s architectural and construction features include rusticated bluestone pilaster to ground floor. This provides a contrast to the smoothly finished square block masonry in texture with its rough surface. Its heavy cornice, which is the ornamented moulding, is supported by corbels, a type of bracket. It has double pilasters, which are carved flat back columns with capitals, or tops, providing ornamental trim. Architraves, window facings with keystones are also extensively used. We’ve all driven past it for years and just taken it for granted but if you have good look next time you will see it packs a fair punch in terms of what features were used in its construction.
Its integrity and condition are listed as Very Good in the Heritage Inventory Records with the Timaru District Council and it is listed as Category A.
It is currently part way through an exterior paint job and promises to looks very smart when finished.