Seven pence an acre for land

LLOYD ESLER
Last updated 07:52 03/09/2013
Kelvin Hotel
The Kelvin Hotel, belonging to the Invercargill Licensing Trust, under construction 50 years ago.

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Southland's largest hotel is the Kelvin, belonging to the Invercargill Licensing Trust.

Planning for a large hotel began in 1952 and the property on the corner of Esk and Kelvin streets was bought in 1957. Construction began in 1961 and it opened officially on January 26, 1965.

The seven-storey building is the second highest in Southland, after the nine-storey Cue TV Building.

Southland's first advertised land sale was for land along the Mataura River.

The auction was held in Sydney on March 27, 1840, of "Twelve important estates on the banks of the River Tetowis (Mataura), in the Middle Island of New Zealand, having a frontage of one mile to the river by twenty miles in depth, and containing twenty sections, or 12,800 acres each lot.

This land was purchased from Towaek (Tuhawaiki), chief of the Southern parts of New Zealand".

The land would have been bought originally by John Jones to graze the cattle that supplied his whaling station at Fortrose with beef.

The auction price was seven pence per acre.

Three current world sheep shearing records were set in Southland.

The nine-hour, three- stand, strong-wool lamb record of 2350 was set on 30 January, 2006, at Mt Linton Station by Shane Harvey, Peter Harvey and Jimmy Clark.

The eight-hour, four-stand, strong-wool record of 2556 was set on February 5, 2013, at Centre Hill Station, Mossburn, by John Kirkpatrick, Leon Samuels, James Mack and Eru Weeds.

The nine-hour, six-stand, strong-wool lamb record of 4188 was set on January 11, 2005, at Wairaki Station by Darin Forde, Craig Anderson, Jimmy Clark, Alton Devery, Paul Rutherford and Darryn Gutsell.

Southland's first bus was a horse- drawn vehicle that took to the muddy streets of Invercargill in 1876.

The first motor bus was a 16-seater, Stirling motor omnibus that was demonstrated on May 6, 1904.

Mr A C Thompson, of Timaru, had imported it from Edinburgh and toured it in southern centres. The engine produced 12hp and was capable of 12mph.

It attracted much favourable attention and comment. The "bus is a most comfortable one, rubber-tyred and nicely upholstered, and it ran round the blocks in capital style.

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The motorist evidently knows his business, and found no difficulty in piloting the different parties about in perfect safety".

Southland's largest cheese was a one ton cheese (1016 kilograms) made in Wyndham in 1905 for the New Zealand Court at the Crystal Palace Exhibition.

About The South
Lloyd Esler
15 Mahuri Rd,
Otatara, RD 9,
Invercargill
Phone-fax (03) 213 0404
email: esler@southnet.co.nz

- The Southland Times

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