Gaiety Theatre

106 Rue Jolie, Akaroa
Akaroa, Canterbury
When Akaroa's Oddfellows decided to build a lodge that would also serve as a community meeting place, a Christchurch architect, A.W. Simpson, designed a large rectangular building with an Italianate façade, built of wood to mimic stone. The façade is a text-book of elements of the Italianate style.

The building's architectural interest is matched by its social importance. For more than 120 years following its opening in April 1879, the Gaiety has been the venue for countless community events. After being sold by the Lodge in the 1940s it was used as a cinema, indoor skating rink and live theatre.

By the late 20th century, the Gaiety had become tired and shabby. Energetic locals formed a Gaiety Trust which refurbished the building, restoring it to its important role as a focus of community life in Akaroa. J.W.

Following the earthquakes the Council has agreed to repair and strengthen this 'much-loved' Akaroa facility.
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