The Original General Service

The history of 7/80 Ballantyne Road

During the depths of Covid, while working around a kitchen table, had an epiphany. What if we could justify getting our own space to set up as an office. A place with a workshop to spread ourselves wide, make a mess and make everyday a good day.

After a brief search we found an old cabinet makers workshop. No running water, paint stains on the floor and enough space to swing a cat, we were sold. With limited skills, and an even tighter budget we set about converting the space into a home we could share with others and build a collaborative community here in Wanaka.

A lick of paint, a few sheets of plywood and some lengths of steel fell within the budget. A broken foot for Fin, and a broken back for Sam hindered initial progress slightly, but the enthusiasm was there.

As the build commenced during the heat of summer we were ambitious in building the office in the downstairs workshop. While it looked and worked well, a 4m high garage door certainly exposed us to the soon to come elements.

A month of late nights and scrounging odds and ends, we had enough for an opening. Bare bones, but more than we could have hoped for. With a date set, movies to screen and beers courtesy of Corona, we invited Wanaka in to share our space and envisage what we had dreamed up.