Tringham, Charles - Architect
Charles Tringham was born at Winforton in Hertfordshire, England, in 1841. Little is known of his education but it is thought that he acquired woodworking skills. Tringham arrived in New Zealand at Auckland in December 1864 and the passenger list records his occupation as a carpenter. Tringham moved to Wellington and established a partnership with a builder named William Lawes. At the end of December 1866 he left the partnership to establish himself as a builder and undertaker. Within a year he was advertising himself as an architect and gaining a considerable number of contracts for houses, churches, hotels and a variety of other commercial premises. Tringham married Margaret Hunter Bennett in April 1868, the daughter of Dr John Bennett, the first New Zealand Registrar-General, and this may have helped his social status in Wellington. Lucrative contracts followed, including the Italianate house ‘Westoe’ (1874) near Marton for Sir William Fox, and the extensions to William Clayton’s former home in Hobson Street (now the nucleus of Queen Margaret College). Tringham was nearing the end of his architectural career in the 1890s and was elected President of the Wellington Association of Architects in 1895. He retired to the Wairarapa to farm and remained there until his death in 1916.