Family to keep Marris enterprises running
Blenheim businessman John Marris would be remembered in the businesses he set up with his children, oldest son Brent Marris said yesterday.
Mr Marris Sr, who had been ill, died on Sunday evening. His funeral is to be held on Saturday at the Church of the Nativity in Blenheim.
Mr Marris, who was also well-known in Marlborough for property developments such as the Westwood retail development, was the agent who bought the farmland that Montana converted into the first commercial vineyards in 1973.
He grew grapes and apples, before developing the apple orchard and packhouse into what became the Wither Hills winery, which he owned with son Brent.
They sold the winery to Lion Nathan for $52 million in 2002.
Mr Marris undertook several housing subdivisions and also developed the Westwood retail centre with Robinsons Construction chief Phil Robinson.
Until recently, Mr Marris was chairman of the Marlborough Research Centre trust.
Brent Marris said his father's viticultural legacy would continue with the family running his vineyards.
Granddaughter Emma Marris is studying a bachelor of viticulture and oenology at Adelaide University, and Mr Marris Jr said she and other family members would carry on the viticultural interests with him.
Other family business interests in property and electronic road user charges company International Telematics would be looked after by Auckland-based sibling, Donna Marris.
The company is run in Auckland by Dean Marris and in the United States by Craig Marris.
Death notices : John Earnest Marris
Express feature January 7, 2104: Pioneer looks back with pride
- The Marlborough Express