Raymond Walter Syme

Date of birth / Date established
Date of death / Date closed
30 Sep 1975
Place of death / Place closed
Person/Corporate type
Currently there is little information that is compiled about Walter Syme's life in New Plymouth. It appears that Walter Syme was part of the Syme family of architects related to George Syme of George Syme & Co. in Hawera (ARC2004-1827). The 1949, 1953 and 1956 Electoral Roll reads that Raymond Walter Syme lived on 196 Carrington Street, New Plymouth, was an architect with the firm of Taylor & Syme. Married to Margery, two daughters. They are not in the listing following these dates. The Taranaki Herald on 19 July 1942 extracted from the Butler Collection Vol. 413/118 reads that on July 13, 1942 at Nurse Davis's to Mr. and Mrs. R.W Syme (nee Margery Welch) a daughter was born and both are well. The museum has a collection of 22 pieces from Walter Syme's time in the NZ Expeditionary Force during WWII. There are small amounts of information available in the research centre relating to Walter Syme's life including a book titled: "Goodly stones & timbers: a history of St. Mary's Church, New Plymouth" by Margaret H. Alington. Syme was a contributor and there is a photo of him found at the back of the book.
"A partner in the firm of Taylor & Syme who designed the War Memorial Hall, the New Plymouth and Westown Post Offices, the gates to Pukekura Park and the offices of the Taranaki Automobile Association. he was born in Hawera in the early 1900's and attended Hawera Primary and New Plymouth Boys High School. He graduated from the school of architecture at Auckland University in 1935 and in the same year was awarded a certificate of merit for small house design by the Institute of Architects.
He was a partner in the firm of Griffiths & Syme and when he returned from World War Two in 1944 he went into practice with the firm Taylor and Syme until 1957 when he went into practice on his own until his death in 1975.
A keen gardner and member of the Vogeltown Bowling Club and life member of the Taranaki Automobile Association. He leaves his wife Margery and two daughters, Pauline and Sandra."
Obit. Taranaki Herald 1 October 1975 (abridged)


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