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About Us

Wanganui Repertory Theatre

The Repertory Theatre in Ridgway Street was once Wanganui’s public library.
As early as 1856 some citizens were promoting the idea of a local library and formed a committee to raise funds for a reading room. Private libraries served the community until 1874 when the Druids Hall was opened with space on the ground floor for a library. The reading room was open free of charge to the public and profits from the lending department were used to buy new books.

In 1876 a group of citizens formed an incorporated society with the intention of taking over the library from the Lodge and the Wanganui Public Library came into existence.

In 1879 the Government made a section in Queens Park with a frontage to Ridgway Street available as the site for a new library. Funds for the building were raised by art and industrial exhibitions and by the sale of debentures. The library (now the Repertory Theatre) was opened in 1882.

By 1894 it was necessary to extend the building and a bequest from the estate of William Alexander financed the addition of the west wing. The east wing was added in 1904 with the aid of a bequest from Thomas Reid.

It was a library until 1933 when a new building was opened in Queens Park. The Ridgway Street building is now home to the Repertory Theatre.

The Committee

  • Phil Hudson, Acting President
  • Jennie Rogers, Treasury
  • Lizz Hudson
  • April Pearson
  • Ian Jamieson
  • Robert Taylor QSM
  • Lynda Sammons
  • Nadine Rayner
  • Beverley Pearce