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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Nelson, Marlborough & Westland Provincial Districts]

Councillor William Ching

Councillor William Ching is the oldest sitting member of the Blenheim Borough Council. He was first elected about the year 1882, and, excepting for an interval of about two years, he has retained his seat continuously ever since. Mr. Ching was born in December, 1845, in Nelson, where his father was for many years a farmer at Stoke, having emigrated to Nelson with the expedition under Captain Wakefield in 1842. He was educated in Nelson, and had some early experience in farming, and then spent a short time in prospecting for gold at Hokitika on the very spot that afterwards became known as the Kanieri goldfields. Later on, Mr. Ching went to Wakapuaka, where he carried on farming for about five years. He afterwards removed to Blenheim, and for some years carried on business as a carter and wood dealer. About the year 1886, Mr. Ching bought a small farm on the old Renwick road, and still conducts it; and in 1902, he opened a produce store in Grove road, and he also carries this on at the present time (1905). Mr. Ching has been a member of the Independent Order of Good Templars for thirty years, and a member of the Ancient Order of Foresters for thirty-five years. He served in the Blenheim Rifles for twenty-two years, and received the New Zealand and Imperial medals; and he was, also, a member of the Blenheim Volunteer Fire Brigade for a great number of years, and of the Blenheim school committee. Mr. Ching married a daughter of Mr. John Doidge, of Stoke, in the year 1868, and has two sons and six daughters, of whom one son and two daughters are married.