Open Day

1 Nov – Thorndon Open Day: Literature, Music & Art

1 Nov – Thorndon Open Day: Literature, Music & Art

Combined Open Days at Randell Cottage, Lilburn House and the Rita Angus Cottage – the homes of New Zealand writers, composers, and artists.

hand-drawn map
Heritage Week map of Thorndon

Join us on Sunday 1 November for an afternoon celebrating art, music and literature at three historic Thorndon creative residencies. Randell Cottage, Lilburn House and Rita Angus Cottage will be open to the public from 1 to 4pm.

Visitors can enjoy refreshments and readings from Randell Cottage writers, music at Lilburn with birthday cake to celebrate what would have been Douglas Lilburn’s 105th birthday, and the opportunity to explore or sketch in the lovely Rita Angus Cottage garden.

These three heritage properties are in easy walking distance of each other in Thorndon.

Randell Cottage (Heritage Category II), built in 1867 as the family home of William and Sarah Randell and their ten children, is now a writer’s residence for New Zealand and French writers. The current resident is Michalia Arathimos, who will be present to read from her novel-in-progress, Cartographia, described as an exploration of place, migration and identity through the eyes of a New Zealand woman of Greek descent.

Lilburn House (heritage Category I), where composer Douglas Lilburn lived and worked, is now a residence for New Zealand composers. There will be music at 2 and 3 pm.

The Rita Angus Cottage (Heritage Category I) was home to the celebrated New Zealand artist between 1955 and 1970. The abundant flowers and plant life surrounding the 1877 cottage inspired much of Rita Angus’ work. Thorndon Trustees and volunteer gardeners will be on hand with drawing materials and reproductions of some of Rita’s representations of her garden.

Koha would be appreciated at each of the residences. We look forward to welcoming you.

Download a map of the houses

A part of Wellington Heritage Week, 26 Oct–1 Nov, 2020.

Save the Date! Annual Open Day Sunday 1 November 2020

Save the Date! Annual Open Day Sunday 1 November 2020

Wellington Heritage Week logoOnce again, the Randell Cottage and garden will be open to visitors for a once-a-year opportunity on Sunday 1 November as part of the annual Wellington Heritage Week.

We will join forces with our fellow Thorndon creative residencies, Lilburn and Rita Angus trusts.

Watch this site for details of our programme of readings and refreshments.

We look forward to welcoming you.

Successful Open Day 2009

Randell Cottage hosted a very successful Open Day on Tulip Sunday this year. Over 60 people came through the cottage and talked with Trustees and Friends about its history and its current use as a writers’ residency.

The visitors ranged from an intrepid Beagle who dragged his owners in the door to a young boy and his mother who were fascinated by the Shacklock range to a couple who renovated old cottages and were delighted to walk through a prime example of ‘stripped down colonial Georgian’.

There were the usual writers interested in a place for writers to write, and those who just happened by after enjoying the tulips. The gorgeous posters organised by Friend of the cottage, Maggie Rainey-Smith and printed by Apex, seemed to attract a great deal of interest. The Trustees and Friends of the cottage had as much fun as the visitors.

We finished up with drinks which representatives from the French Embassy and the Lilburn House attended, as well as Susan Price whose family gifted the cottage to the Trust.