Description: Wills' Tobacco Factory
Date Listed: 17 November 1986
English Heritage Building ID: 304507
OS Grid Reference: NZ2811066918
OS Grid Coordinates: 428110, 566918
Latitude/Longitude: 54.9961, -1.5621
NZ 26 NE COAST ROAD
9/809 Wills' Tobacco Factory
Factory. Mid 1940s to an earlier design. Red brick and Portland stone; roof flat
and hidden by parapets. Dignified Art Deco style.
Main south front 3 storeys, 23 bays in all. Projecting 3-bay centre, 2-bay each end
and 8-bay intermediate sections. Central balustraded perron from which a wide flight
of steps rises to terrace in front of door. At either side quadrant retaining walls
hold shrubberies. All these are ashlar with banded copings; panelled piers to
perron. Central glazed (double) door in a fully-glazed section framed by stout
round piers which support a banded flat hood with quadrant angles. Side lights
outside the piers; the whole entrance in a porch, with fluted top band and quadrant
corners, projecting from the tall central tower which has a fluted frieze and a top
slipped back in 3 stages, the middle one fluted the lower one with WDE H O WILLS in
sans-serif letters. Centre section of tower recessed, with tall, 4-light,
horizontal paned window under egg-and-dart carved lintel with acanthus keystone.
Above this a clock, stopped at noon. Ashlar tower and porch flanked by lower
brick staircase towers with long two-light similar window and matching top treatment
though with only one step back. Penultimate bays are lower, blank ashlar towers
which hae shallow tall recessed panels with bands of fluting at heads. Intermediate
sections have 3 tiers of 4-light metal-framed windows, held by ashlar piers set back
in 2 places at sides, those on ground floor higher. Above, between and below the
bands of windows are bands of uninterrupted brickwork with stone edging strips.
Set-back outer bays are similar but with 2-light windows. 17-bay returns are
exactly similar but without a central section; and the outer towers have doors
under flat hoods and long stair windows above. Attached to the brickwork in places
are names of products, which can be lit up at night: probably later in date.
Half-glazed porch addition on left return is not of special interest.
Listing NGR: NZ2811066918
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.