15 / Bach / Crib

With its name derived from ‘bachelor’, referring to single male farm workers living in basic huts, the bach is – or was – the simple New Zealand weekend or holiday house. Typically located at the beach or lake, the classic example was made of simple, often recycled, materials. Beside it stood a corrugated iron tank, collecting water off the roof, and an outside dunny. The bach itself had few rooms, and made good use of old and well-worn furniture and fittings retired from the owners’ main house back in the suburbs. The bach – or its South Island equivalent, the crib – once reflected the desire for and the offer of a simpler way of life away from the hustle and bustle of town, but such retreats are now an endangered species, a result of stricter regulations, the increasing cost of land and the tendency for holiday homes to match suburban houses.

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