The First Hundred - 1962


Last Modified: 18-3-2023 16:43

Mayor: Mr E. P. Meachen

Councillors: Messrs C. C. Dix, D. S. Hall, S. P. Harling, L. S. Jellyman, H. E. McKinley, G. E. Marshall, J. G. Walker, G. H. Whimp, S. H. J. Wiblin, D. C. Irving, F. L. Smith, G. A. Wall, E. S. Young.


16: "Rangi" Brown, S. Barlow, H. Todd and W. Humphreys of the Marlborough Bowling Club win the New Zealand bowling fours at Dunedin.


The Mayor, Mr E. P. Meachen, names the small hedge-enclosed area next to the stream in Pollard Park "B.P. Corner," after the founder of Scouting, Lord Baden Powell.


22: Blenheim Jaycees stage "Meet A Celebrity" at His Majesty's Theatre, with Winston McCarthy, broadcaster; Wilson Whineray, N.Z. rugby captain; Peter Mulgrew, mountaineer; Nevile Lodge, cartoonist and Alec O'Shea, secretary of N.Z. Federated Farmers, each giving a talk. Mr L. C. Duckworth was convener and the effort raised £220.

23: The Postmaster-General, Mr Kinsella, stated that a new Post Office and Telephone Exchange in Blenheim would cost £900,000. The Exchange was urgent but the Post Office would have to wait and work would commence only when the Exchange was finished.

Messrs P. Forsyth, F. T. Brown and B. Clemett jump for their lives when the ladder on which they were working was hit by a rake of box cars in the railway yard. Mr Clemett was slightly injured.

The Council purchases land off Park Terrace for the proposed Youth Club Hall.


10: Blenheim people are delighted to hear that the Outward Bound youth training school will be established at Anakiwa at the head of the Queen Charlotte Sound. It was opened on September 1 by the Governor-General, Lord Cobham. Roger Drylie was the first Blenheim boy to attend a course.

13: Woodbourne Airport becomes the base for a joint American-New Zealand aero-space research centre.

17: The Minister of Works, the Hon. W. S. Goosman, opens the Council's new £44,000 automatic plant at the Gasworks. Mr H. E. Bungate, works manager-engineer.


1: Many streets in Blenheim under water in the worst flood for many years. Most residents of the Wairau Pa were com­pletely flooded out.

The Mayor, Mr E. P. Meachen, opens River Park Motors' new garage in Lower High Street on the site where James Wynen erected the first store in Blenheim in 1855.

27: Mr S. E. West is appointed the first regional planning officer for Marlborough.


Mr George Palk, district public trustee, retires after 44 years' service.

13: A canister containing documents, a copy of The Marlbor­ough Express and coins, is cemented behind the foundation stone of the new Church of the Nativity nave. Mr R. Hodson, bricklayer.


5: The Blenheim Choral Society established. Dr W. A. Evans, first president.

8: The Marlborough Business & Professional Women's Club formed. Miss D. E. Talbot, first president.

10: Many Blenheim people travel to Picton to say farewell to the inter-island steamer Tamahine. She was decorated with flags and coloured lights as she left the Waitohi Wharf for the last time after 37 years on the Wellington-Picton run.

Mr Roy Lyford, of Blenheim, elected president of the N.Z. Auto Cycle Union.

The long-awaited inter-island rail-road ferry Aramoana arrives in Picton on her first scheduled trip. There was a blustery wind and the vessel rammed the Waitohi Wharf while avoiding a small boat.

A year-old three-bedroomed house sells for £3350. Sections average £500.

28: Marlborough Marine Supplies (Mr J. W. Radcliffe, manag­ing director) builds a 16ft plastic and golden mahogany jet boat for the King of Thailand.


4: The unimproved value of the Borough rises 50% to £3,831,780.

13: Mr S. P. Harling elected Mayor of Blenheim.


Citizens are irate when Blenheim is described in a national paper as looking like a "shanty town".

10: The Marlborough Car Club organises the Renwick Road Race. Mr C. B. Whitehead, president.

14: The new Council decides to suspend standing orders and release to the press copies of committee reports before they are considered before the full Council.

28: The Council decides not to use a site in Pollard Park for the proposed centennial hall. The Centennial Association de­cides to build in Henry Street.


18: Council workmen decorate the town with coloured lights and erect a star on the top of the giant Wellingtonia tree in Seymour Square.

Rates produce £102,281; building permits £455,027; population 12,350; valuation, capital £10,898,000, unimproved £3,831,780.

Cite this page

Beverley, A. (2023). The First Hundred - 1962. Retrieved December, 2, 2023, from