I used to live around this side of Botany which is in East Auckland. Every time I drive past Ti Rakau Drive, I’d go past this old house on top of a mini hill and wonder who owned it. It was obviously abandoned and the windows were always wrapped in foil. I actually thought that there were probably ghost stories going around with this house, and it’s probably a tinnie house, or a P lab… Imagination gone wild? Maybe…
Then our family moved out and I stopped frequenting this area so often. But just recently I noticed a For Sale sign, and some burn marks on the side of the house. What happened???
After some research it turns out that the house (called the Guys Homestead) was an old farm house from the early 1900s that just sort of became a permanent fixture as development grew around Botany. Instead of rural scenery, you’d see a busy main road, leaky townhouses, Asian eateries, Dunkin’ Donuts (mmm…. donuts…) and a lot of lamentable East Auckland driving (come on you guys, indicators are there for a reason!).
In December 2012 a fire broke out at the property and official sources say that it was a deliberate act. Very sad, really. This was a character building in a suburb known for either leaky, or bland cookie-cutter brick and tile houses. So in honour of times gone by, here are some photos of the Guys Homestead in its fading glory.