The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Nelson, Marlborough & Westland Provincial Districts]
Kekerangu is on the main coach road between Blenheim and Kaikoura, and is on the sea coast, fifty miles from Blenheim. There is no hotel at the settlement, which, however, has a telegraph and money order office. Good accommodation may be obtained at the station boarding-house. The country is wild and hilly, and is suitable only for sheep farming. Small steamers discharge cargoes at Kerkerangu by means of a boat.
The Kekeragu Post and Telegraph Office is what is known as a lineman's station, and there are only about four others of its grade in the colony. It has the usual money order, Savings Bank, and Government Life Insurance departments. The office was opened when the telegraph line was constructed about 1870, and the district superintended by the officer in charge extends from the Clarence river in the south to the Salt Water Lagoon in the north.
The Kekerangu Accommodation House is a fine two-storey building, and is one of the best appointed houses of its kind in Marlborough. The bedrooms are neat and comfortably furnished; a good table is kept, and there is a pleasant sitting room, well supplied with periodicals, books and illustrated papers.
Kekerangu is a large station of 120,000 acres. It is situated on the East Coast, at a distance of fifty miles from Blenheim, and forty from Kaikoura. Originally the land was in the possession of various occupants, but some of the holdings fell into the hands of the late Mr. John Symons, who subsequently purchased adjoining properties and acquired the leasehold of a large tract of country. After the death of Mr. Symons, “Kekerangu,' which means “Black Beetle,” was occupied by his sons, until it was purchased by Mr. Edmund Rutherford. For about a mile and a half the main south road runs through the station, which extends in a southerly direction for fifty miles, and is then bounded by the Clarence river and the main range of the Kaikouras. Upwards of 40,000 Merino sheep graze on the run, which is considered one of the healthiest in the province of Marlborough. The homestead a Kekerangu has the appearance of a township, as, besides the numerous station buildings, there is a post and telegraph office, a school, and an accommodation house.
“The Shades” Kekerangu. This property is thirty-five miles from Kaikoura, and fifty-five miles from Blenheim. It is a freehold of about 8000 acres, and is bounded by the Kekerangu station, on the north, “Wood-bank” and small grazing runs on the south; by the Pacific Ocean on the east, and by the Clarence river on the west. The Blenheim-Kaikoura main road runs through the property, which is mostly hilly, and of limestone formation. About thirty miles of fencing have been erected, and the land has been sown in cocksfoot, red clover, and perennial ryegrass. The rabbits, which at one time were plentiful, have been kept down since 1894, and at the present time give no trouble whatever, very few being seen on the run. From fifty to one hundred acres of turnips are grown annually for fattening purposes. The estate carries 5500 crossbred and halfdred Merinos and Lincolns and Leicesters, the rams having been obtained from different stud flocks. Originally, “The Shades” extended from Kekerangu to Clarence river, and had a total area of about 30,000 acres. The land was taken up by the late Dr. Shaw and Mr. Frederick Trolove, and upon the death of the former was bought by Messrs P. and J. W. Trolove, who effected many improvements, including the breaking up of fresh land every year. Mr. Peter Trolove afterwards sold his interest, and now (1905) resides in Hoon Hay road, Spreydon, Christchurch.
Mr. John William Trolove resides at “The Shades,” of which he took possession with his brother, in 1893. He was born in Marlborough in 1863, and is a son of the late Mr. Edwin Trolove, formerly of Stoke, Nelson, an early settler, who came to New Zealand in the forties. Mr. J. W. Trolove was educated at Nelson College, and having decided to follow station life, he was three years at “Woodbank,” and was also at “Starborough” during the management of Mr. Thomas Hall, now in Taranaki. Mr. Trolove takes a great interest in cricket and shooting. He is married to a daughter of Mr. A. S. Collyns, of Nelson.