McLean's Mansion (originally called Holly Lea) was built for Allan McLean and completed in 1900. McLean built the house following the compulsory acquisition of his pastoral estate under the Liberal government's closer settlement scheme. Designed by Christchurch architect Robert England in the Jacobean style, the house featured twin towers and a Flemish-like pediment. Its main attribute was its size – boasting 53 rooms, it was reportedly the largest wooden house in Australasia. After McLean's death it was used as an old people's home, then a dental nurses' hostel and a training centre. It was damaged in the 2011 Christchurch earthquake and in 2014 was pending demolition but the work of the McLean's Mansion Charitable Trust ensured it was restored and opened again in 2019.
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Christchurch City Libraries
Reference: CCL Photo Collection 22, Img02343
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