Ohinemuri Regional History Journal 29, October 1985


ANNUAL REPORT— The President reported that the Society could look back on another successful year in all facets of its activities. Regular monthly meetings were attended by an average of 25 members and these meetings, together with the field trips and Journal kept member's interest very much alive.

The President said that the Society had been represented at the Annual Federation Conference at Te Awamutu by their delegate, Rev. Gordon Kaa and four Committee members as observers. The Journal Editor, Mr Gary Staples and his wife, Elaine, attended a Seminar, "Writing and Recording History" at Rotorua in July. The Society had received a visit from the Federation President, Mr Robin Astridge, in June 1984.

The Society membership stands at 290. Life membership was conferred on Mr R.J. (Bob) Hughes, in recognition of his service to the Society.


Exhibits are continuing to be donated to the Museum and the photographic display has been updated. Through the generosity of Mr George Eccles, the Society will inherit his valuable Royal Albert China collection. During the year 1760 people have visited the Museum.


Topics covered by speakers have been varied and interesting. These were:- Life in the U.S.A., Activities of the R.S.A., Scott Base, the Bronte Country, Eye problems in Fiji, Mr Lawrence Bramble's Bluff ride and a slide evening from the collection of the late Mr Fielden Thorpe. A luncheon at the Racecourse in November 1984 drew 80 members.

Trips were made to Tauranga, Huntly and Howick.

The annual street stall in October netted $444.


The Society had changed the data of the Annual General Meeting to February, with the financial year ending on the 31st December instead of March.

The President, Mr E.J. Cunliffe stated that meetings had been well attended. Three Waihi members had passed away during the year, namely: Mrs Ethel Bateman, Mr Tom Gordon and Mrs Gay Bennie. Mrs Florence Newman has been congratulated on attaining her 90th birthday.

The Society regretted the departure of two members who had left Waihi. They were: Mrs Dolly Heath to KatiKati and Mrs Kathleen Dike to Paeroa.

One field trip had been undertaken during the year to Devonport to view the Naval Museum and the Naval Base. Speakers during the year were :—

June: Mr Fred Pratt The Silverton Battery.

July: Mr John Osbourne N.Z. Naval History.

August: Mr Bill Butler Waihi Businesses 1905 - 1918.

October: Mr Bill Butler Reminiscences of Waihi.

April: Mrs M. Wells Report on N.Z. Federation Conference.

June: Mr Fred Carbutt Old Transport in Waihi.

A pot-luck lunch was held in November and a happy time of fellowship was spent together.

Mrs. Wells and Mrs. Harper had represented Waihi at the N.Z. Federation of Historical Societies A.G.M. and Conference at Te Awamutu.



A bus trip to Devonport in November to visit the Naval Museum and Naval Base by Waihi members proved to be most enjoyable and interesting.

After crossing the Auckland Harbour Bridge, the bus proceeded to Devonport by way of Narrow Neck past the Military Camp familiar to many Waihi men, and thence via Cheltenham to Devonport's Windsor Reserve. Here a short stop, then back to the bus along Queen's Parade to the Naval Museum in Spring Street. Here a most interesting time was spent viewing small artefacts, memorabilia, photos and books covering the development of the Naval Forces in New Zealand.

The party then returned to Windsor Reserve for lunch and then returned to the Naval Base gates where all cameras were handed in before the bus could proceed inside. The party then split up into two for a conducted tour of the Base and Devonport Dockyard escorted by two Naval ratings. The two ratings described the various buildings and features which proved to be very interesting. Further interest was taken in the fact that there was a ship in dry dock as well as two others tied up at the wharves.

The tour lasted from 1.30 to after 4 p.m. and it was disappointing that time ran out for a projected visit to North Head - but that will be another trip to look forward to.