Mainly West of Queen Street - seen through my lens

Painted Boxes: Tiberius Returns

Tiberius, the Titirangi Mouse (Edith Diggle)

Tiberius, the Titirangi Mouse (Edith Diggle)

Out with the old — in with the new! We have a big new telecommunications cabinet in our neighbourhood, connected by fiber (and causing me a lot of grief and unprintable words at the time of changeover, when broadband failed). The previous box depicted the story of Tiberius the Titirangi mouse, and was shown here. Now Edith Diggle, well-known local artist, was contracted again to supply art for the new box, thus being able to bring back Tiberius. The design incorporates quotes from the book, and those were written by local jeweller Judy Newton.

The box shows characters from the children’s book Tiberius the Titirangi Mouse by P. Ross, all embedded in the bush vegetation so typical of Titirangi.

Here is the summary of the book: “This is the story of Tiberius, a small brown field mouse who lives in the bush in an old kauri stump in Titirangi, with his companions, five hu-hu beetles. One day Tiberius meets a small white mouse who lives in the Big House, and together they enjoy some wonderful adventures.”

You can read a few pages on Google Books.

Edit 12/05/12: Signs have gone up around the neighbourhood, inviting children to a Welcome Home party for Tiberius on Sunday, 20 May, 10 a.m. at Edith and Lynton Diggle’s place, 3 Ngaio Road. Author Patricia Ross will be reading from the book. Parents a plate, please. See picture below.

Edith Diggle at Work

Edith Diggle at Work

Judy Newton Working

Judy Newton Working


  1. Hamilton

    These painted utility boxes are an excellent idea.
    I think I prefer this version to the previous one, though it is a tough call.

  2. Tulsa Gentleman

    Charming drawings. Much too nice to be sullied as Graffias. Very nice indeeg

  3. Carola

    Painted boxes are very nice. This one is an extra class with wonderful drawings. Thanks for the information.

  4. Steffe

    I am always a bit jealous of you when I see these boxes. I have mentioned the idea to a few people at my local municipality but so far we only have the graffiti versions.

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