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Westpac Bank, Normanton

Place Details
Place ID 600394
Registration Type State Heritage
Place Name Westpac Bank, Normanton
Alternative Name Bank of New South Wales
Place Classification Built
Place Category Commercial/Financial/Professional
Place Type Bank
Themes 3 Developing secondary and tertiary industries / 3.7 Financing
Register Entry Date 21/10/1992

Address Landsborough Street
Town / Suburb NORMANTON
Post Code 4890

Cultural Heritage Significance
Principal Period
of Significance
1880s (fabric) 1886-ongoing (Historical use)
Criterion A The Normanton Westpac Bank, erected in 1886, is important in demonstrating the pattern of Queensland's history, in particular the pattern of development of the Gulf region of north-west Queensland, and the development of Normanton as a commercial centre for the Gulf region.
Criterion B It is significant as a rare example of a large timber bank building, with early scales and safes, surviving in Queensland.
Criterion D It is significant as a rare example of a large timber bank building, with early scales and safes, surviving in Queensland.
Criterion E The building exhibits aesthetic characteristics valued by the community, in particular its contribution to the townscape of Normanton.
Criterion G As a banking premises in continuous use in Normanton since 1886, it has a strong association with the community.
Criterion H It has a special association with the work of Richard Gailey, as one of a number of rural bank buildings designed by Gailey during the late 19th century.

History This single storey timber building was constructed in 1886 as the permanent premises for the Normanton branch of the Bank of New South Wales. By the mid 1880s Normanton, on the Norman River, had developed as the port for a large extent of pastoral and mining country, including the Cloncurry gold and copper fields, and the Etheridge and Croydon goldfields. The development of banking facilities was important to the commercial role of Normanton as a supply centre for the Gulf region. Normanton was constituted a municipality in 1886. The Bank of New South Wales commenced trading in Normanton in 1884 in rented premises, acquiring the present site in 1885. The building was designed by Richard Gailey, who was responsible for the design of bank buildings elsewhere in Queensland during the late 1880s. The building was used as both the bank premises and manager's residence until the late 1960s when the manager moved to a new residence. The residential component of the building was kept as staff quarters until 1971 when it was replaced by new staff quarters at the rear of the bank building. In 1978 substantial internal alterations were undertaken to the premises to update the banking facilities. The verandahs which had been enclosed by the mid 1960s were reopened. A storage shed was erected on the site in 1991. The Westpac Bank is the only remaining banking facility in Normanton.

Description Located on the corner of Landsborough and Little Brown Streets, the Normanton Westpac Bank is a single-storeyed exposed frame timber building on timber stumps, with a corrugated iron pyramid roof. It has wide timber verandahs on three sides which have corrugated iron skillion roofs. The bank has a simple rectangular plan, with a "book room" in the eastern corner. There is a weatherboard annex and c1970s staff quarters to the rear of the bank. The exterior is modestly detailed, with bracing, studding and nogging over T&G boarding, paired shaped eaves brackets under the main roof, and timber doors and double hung sash windows. The verandah has square timber posts with a braced balustrade. The Landsborough Street elevation has central timber stairs with a timber pediment above the landing. The Little Brown Street elevation has timber stairs, new doors, and a partially enclosed verandah. Internally, surviving evidence of earlier operations of the bank include gold scales and the manager's safes. The Landsborough and Little Brown Street elevations are intact, and the building contributes to the townscape of Normanton.

Element Name Westpac Bank, Normanton
Designer Name Gailey, Richard
Design Period 1870s - 1890s Late 19th century
Construction Period 1886 - 1886
Construction Method Frame - timber - exposed studs
Fabric (Exterior Structure) Timber - chamferboard
Fabric (Roof) Metal sheeting - corrugated iron
Roof Form Pyramid
Place Components Furniture/Fittings

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Last updated: 15 March 2013

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