Ohinemuri Regional History Journal 41, September 1997
ARTHUR & NOELENE REID: At the Annual meeting of the Paeroa Historical Society, Mr & Mrs Reid were honoured with Life Membership in recognition of their outstanding service to the Society and the Museum. Both Mr & Mrs Reid are inaugural members of the Society and for many years have served on the committee. Mr Reid was President from 1990 to 1996. During this time he played a prominent part in the development of the Museum. Mrs Reid gave many hours of work assisting with the Museum's organisation and arranged many bus trips for the members.
MONA TOWNSHEND: At the May meeting of the Paeroa Historical Society, Mrs Townshend was honoured for her 27 years as Treasurer of the Society. She took over from the late Arthur Dance, five years after the Society was formed. In appreciation of her services, a presentation was made to her from both the Society and the Society's Committee.
NEZZIE MORRIS: Mrs Morris died at Hetherington House, Waihi on 25 August 1996, after a short illness. She was born at Waipu on 17 March 1895. Some events of Mrs Morris' life are recorded in Journal 38, and the naming of a mine shaft at Waitekauri, in her honour, is recorded in Journal 39.
CECIL HESLOP: Mr Heslop died on 12 July 1996 at Ohinemuri House, Paeroa. He was born in Taranaki in 1908, the eldest son of Ella and Stanley Heslop. After moving from Waverley, the Heslop family eventually settled at Hikutaia, purchasing part of the Gubb estate. Cecil attended Thames High School along with his brothers. After leaving school he worked on his father's farm.
In 1933 the Heslop family obtained an undeveloped farm at Wani Road, Netherton, in a Government ballot. The family decided that Cecil was to have this farm and he built a home and a cowshed and commenced clearing and draining the land. There was no electricity and milking was done by hand. In 1936 Cecil married Elva Gubb, whose parents farmed next to Cecil's family at Hikutaia. They had three daughters. Mr Heslop served as a Councillor on the Hauraki County Council, was a Justice of the Peace and Patron of the Paeroa District Choir. After selling the farm in 1969, Mr and Mrs Heslop moved to Paeroa.
HASZARD'S ELECTRICAL STORE: In August 1996 Noel and Maureen Haszard sold their electrical store, Waihi Electric, to Phil and Glenda Davison, thus bringing to an end many years of the Haszard family's association with the business.
In 1938 Harry Haszard and Lloyd Beeche started an electrical business and retail store in Waihi. Both men were born in Waihi, Harry Haszard in 1909 and Lloyd Beeche in 1915. Mr Haszard's parents had arrived in the district in 1895 and Mr Haszard senior was a surveyor. The business started out in a store at the top of the town, then moved to a building across the road and finally into new premises on 1 August 1963.
Over the years the firm trained approximately 26 apprentices including Harry's son Noel. Noel started his apprenticeship in November 1956 and later owned and operated the store. Maureen started work for the company in 1962. She married Noel and later left the store to raise a family. Before returning to work at the electrical store ten years ago she worked for Farmers Trading Co. and the National Bank.
CORRECTION: Journal 40, 1996. Page 9, The Poet Laureate and Two Paeroa Teachers, Second column, second paragraph. "The assembly hall seating was rearranged in 'hollow square' so that each class facing inward could stand and recite its chosen poem and the choir could sing those that had been set to music."
CATHOLIC CHURCH, TAIRUA: On Sunday, 27 April 1997 the new Tairua Catholic church, named St. Mary's, was opened. This replaced St. Columcille's, a small kauri church which was moved to Tairua from Kuaotunu in the 1950's.
FARMING AWARD: Ngatea dairy farmer, Mark Townshend and his wife, Diane recently won the Farmers' Mutual A C Cameron Award. This is one of the top national farming awards and it was presented to them by Sir Allan Wright, the President of the Royal Agricultural Society. Mark is the son of Gray and Marie Townshend of Ngatea, grandson of the late Margaret and Charles Townshend and step Grandson of Mona Townshend of Paeroa.
WAIHI GOLF CLUB: In June 1996 the Waihi Golf Club marked its 90th anniversary. In 1906 a small group of golfers started a club and the first golf course (nine holes) was at Hollis' Bush, where the Waihi College now stands. The move to the present site at Woodlands Road was made 43 years ago.
GOLDFIELDS STEAM TRAIN SOCIETY: Towards the end of 1996 the Goldfields Steam Train Society acquired a new attraction, namely a 1937 steam-powered breakdown crane. The crane was brought to Waihi from Taumarunui, where it had been in storage for the previous six years. It weighs 45 tonnes, with its coal and oil, and will be used for various lifting jobs as well as being for display.
MARY J PECKHAM: Mrs Peckham, a former resident of Paeroa and an early member of the Paeroa Historical Society, died on 25 April 1997 at St. Joan's Hospital, Auckland.
BONNIE PIPE: In May 1997 Miss Veronica (Bonnie) Pipe celebrated her 90th birthday with a function at the Waihi Beach Surf Life Saving Clubrooms. Miss Pipe was a foundation member of the club, having helped to set it up in 1927.
Miss Pipe was born in Waihi in 1907, a daughter of Bert and Lizzie Pipe. The family moved to Waihi Beach over 75 years ago where all nine children in the family grew up. She was usherette at the Waihi Beach picture theatre for 38 years. She was also instrumental in the establishment of the tennis club and became custodian for 20 years. Then she became a keen player of bowls and took part in the administration of the Waihi Beach Bowling Club, of which she is now Patron. Her involvement with Country Women's Institute, Good Samaritans and her 60-year membership of the Stella Maris Catholic Church congregation are also noteworthy.
Her birthday function was attended by over 150 well wishers. Several friends and family addressed the gathering, speaking of her community service and the community's devotion to her.
BEN GWILLIAM: The Paeroa Historical Society congratulates Ben on the occasion of his 90th birthday. Ben was born in Auckland in 1907 and came with his family to the Ohinemuri area where his father was employed in mining. When he left school, Ben commenced a motor engineering apprenticeship and later operated his own garage for 40 years. In 'retirement' he worked for a period, assaying rock samples for the company prospecting at Karangahake in the 1970s. Ben is a foundation member of the Paeroa Historical Society.
MIRANDA NATURALISTS' TRUST: The Miranda Naturalist's Trust celebrated its 21 years of existence in 1996. It originated with a group of birdwatchers who had the idea of a headquarters to work from, and thought of Miranda. At the beginning of 1975, after a series of meetings, the Miranda Naturalists' Trust was formed. Miranda farmers, Allan and Jocelyn Lane offered the trust the lease of land at an old limeworks building. Permission to build there was opposed by the Department of Conservation.
It took ten years to overcome various delays and setbacks but in 1987 the trust bought land nearby and in 1988 began fund raising for the purpose of building. The first stage of building was completed in 1990. The trust now has a membership of 730.