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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Taranaki, Hawke's Bay & Wellington Provincial Districts]

Builders and Contractors

Builders and Contractors.

Burton, Alfred, Builder and Contractor, Maria Place, Wanganui. Mr Burton started business in the year 1902, with a partner, and has gradually made a good connection. He has erected many buildings in Wanganui, including Mr Sergeant's fine house in Bell Street. Mr Burton was born in Yorkshire, England, in the year 1877, and is a son of Mr Robert Burton, a mechanical engineer, of Masterton. He was educated in England, came to New Zealand in 1884, and was apprenticed to the building trade in Masterton, under Mr Daniel, a large contractor and timber merchant. He subsequently travelled all over the Dominion as a journeyman before establishing his present business in Wanganui. Mr Burton is married, and has two children.

Coles, Ernest, Builder and Contractor, Alexander Street, Wanganui. Mr Coles was born in Droxford, near Portsmouth, England, in the year 1865, and is a son of Mr E. P. Coles, a well-known builder of Hawke's Bay, whose portrait appears on page 511 of this volume. He was educated in his native town, and learned the building trade. He came to New Zealand with his parents in 1878, by the ship “Columbus,” and served a full apprenticeship under his father at Napier. He subsequently worked for a time in partnership with his brothers at Onga Onga, before starting on his own account at Ormondville. In 1900 he removed to Wanganui, and established his present business, which gives employment to twelve journeymen. Mr. Coles is married, and has two sons.

Sims, John George, Builder and Contractor, Ingestre Street, Wanganui. This business was founded in the year 1899. The premises consist of a convenient office, and a large workshop, which carries a full plant of woodworking machinery, driven by a twelve-horse power Campbell gas engine. A number of well-known residences and offices in Wanganui have been built by Mr Sims, who employs twenty persons in his business. Mr Sims was born in the year 1868, in Napier, where he was educated at public and private schools, and spent four years at the grocery trade, under Messrs. Neal and Close. He then learned the building trade with Mr Robert Holt, by whom he was employed for seven years. Mr Sims subsequently travelled over the Dominion, and gained further experience in his trade. He worked for Mr D. Reece, Christchurch, as foreman in the erection of the Belfast page 605 Freezing Works. In 1891 he came to Wanganui, and was employed by Mr T. H. Battle until establishing his own business. Mr Sims takes a keen interest in local affairs, is first lieutenant of the Fire Brigade, Borough Fire Inspector, and is a member of the Agricultural Association and the Cosmopolitan Club. He has been a member for many years of the Garrison Band and the Liedertafel Society.