CYCLOPEDIA OF NZ 1897
Theatre Royal (James McChesney, proprietor), Broadway, Marton. This fine two-story wood and iron building, lately known as the Forester's Hall, has just been rebuilt by its enterprising owner. It is adapted to seat from 550 to 600, and has extensive stage conveniences, with comfortable dressing-rooms. Underneath the stage there is a large supper room, which is well fitted up. The fine drop scene, which is the work of a local artist, represents Windsor Castle, and has been very much admired. Mr. McChesney has provided for the ventilation of the theatre by eight large windows. In addition to the main entrance, three other outlets are available in case of fire or panic. The proprietor is glad to make reasonable arrangements for letting to any company visiting Marton.
McChesney, James Cabinetmaker, Upholsterer, Undertaker, Ironmonger, Saddler, and Contractor, Ironmongery and Furnishing Warehouse, Broadway, Marton. Telegraphic address, "McChesney, Marton.' P.O. Box 30. Bankers Bank of Australasia. Private residence, Crofton, Marton. Mr. McChesney is a native of Belfast, Ireland. Here he was apprenticed to Mr. Connor, contractor, and after completing his term, in 1868, was for two years in business on his own behalf, and for three years afterwards in Barrow-in-Furness. Having decided on settling in New Zealand, he arrived per ship `Rodney' in 1875. Almost immediately Mr. McChesney settled in the Rangitikei, entering into business as a contractor. In 1879 he added the other branches to his business as a builder and contractor. The premises occupied are of wood and iron, two stories in height, and contain 2800 square feet of floorage space. Mr. McChesney is a direct importer of ironmongery, and keeps a large general stock. He is well known throughout this grand district, both as a builder and as a man of business, and many of the schools and other large buildings have been erected by him. In local politics Mr. McChesney has taken his full share, having occupied the position of a councillor of the Marton Borough for six years. He is a Master Mason in the Masonic fraternity, and belongs to the local Foresters.
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