The First Hundred - 1952


Last Modified: 18-3-2023 13:03

Mayor: Mr H. J. S. Mitchell

Councillors: Messrs R. Agnew, C. C. Bythell, W. C. Davies, C. C. Dix, T. H. Gleeson, A. H. R. Houlston, H. G. Patchett, H. A. J. Sowman, A. W. Taylor.


A Blenheim car dealer states he has 100 people on his list waiting for new cars.

17: A Blenheim man who can pluck, dress and clean six fowls in 111/2 minutes challenges anyone to a contest.

Marlborough College clothes are described as expensive—rain­coat £3.5.0, shorts £1.4.0, blazer £3.5.0, stockings 9/-, cap 12/11, shirt £1.2.6, tie 5/11, shoes £3.


6: Blenheim mourns the sudden death of King George VI. Church bells tolled, all shops and schools closed, and all sport and recreation was cancelled.

11: In Market Place the Mayor, Mr H. J. S. Mitchell, proclaims Princess Elizabeth Alexandra Mary as Queen Elizabeth II.

28: "If we don't stop dilly-dallying we will end up as the worst council on record," said a Borough councillor during a debate.


Mr S. E. West, engineer in charge of the Saltworks at Lake Grassmere, reports to The Express that 600 tons of salt were harvested during the season.

23: Flying Officer C. M. Waters, of Blenheim, killed in a Mosquito aircraft crash near Woodbourne.


Thirteen acres west of the Burleigh Bridge on the New Renwick Road are subdivided for housing.


20: The Competitions Society holds its fourth annual festival. Mr W. H. Forbes, president.

19: A Marlborough Branch of the National Council of Women is formed with Mrs P. Jenkins as first president.


Mr E. J. Hill retires after serving as the district coroner for 49 years.


A £1530 Steinway grand piano imported by the Blenheim Civic Grand Piano Committee arrives in Blenheim.


There is an outcry when the Marlborough Trotting Club is granted only a one-day permit per year for its meeting. Mr T. P. Shand, Member for Marlborough, threatens to resign from his party if the Government does not right the injustice. An extra day was granted in September. Mr W. J. Murray, presi­dent.

Marlborough Federated Farmers recommend the formation of a catchment board.

30: Unsuccessful attempts are made to have the Marlborough Progress League revived.


2: Mr V. J. Daines of Blenheim is appointed referee in a Waikato-Manawatu Ranfurly Shield rugby challenge.

25: Council borrows £100,000 to replace the Borough water mains.

The Council milk committee recommends that consumers should still have the choice of raw or pasteurised milk from the Blen­heim Treatment Station in spite of objections from the Milk Division.

22: Death of Mr R. P. Furness, a proprietor of The Marlbor­ough Express since the retirement of his father, Mr S. J. Furness, in 1910.


The ninth annual New Zealand Jaycee convention (160 dele­gates) is held in Blenheim. Mr G. S. Fuller, local president.

A Council discussion on the revived river loop scheme raised many points of order, interjections, recriminations and accusa­tions. One councillor stated that those present were "a dumb lot" who would never be re-elected.


4: It is announced by the Parish Priest, Father L. Brice, that at the end of the year Brothers would replace the Sisters of Mercy as teachers at St. Mary's Boys' School.

5: Mr S. P. Harling, a newcomer to Blenheim from Canada, suggests to the editor of The Express that there should be a Cook Strait drive-on car ferry between Picton and Wellington. The editor of The Express, Mr S. I. Vercoe, and others, waged a ten-year battle to bring this about. There was much opposition and apathy. There was also much support in the latter years from local organisations. The proposition was extended to include the provision of roll-on rail facilities, and the service was commenced by the Aramoana on August 11, 1962.

Rates produce £50,259; building permits £217,668; area 1945 acres; population 8340; valuation, capital £3,227,478, unim­proved £636,857.

Cite this page

Beverley, A. (2023). The First Hundred - 1952. Retrieved February, 28, 2024, from