The Early Canterbury Runs: Containing the First, Second and Third (new) Series
Tresillian — (Run 37)
When McLean and Macdonald bought Wedge's run in 1852 (see the account of Ashfield), Macdonald took ten thousand acres—the western half—as his share. He and his brothers, William Kenneth and Angus Macdonald, worked this and their other runs in partnership in the early days. They thought that this run would be very valuable as a wether station, being so near Christchurch, but all the same at the end of 1854 they sold it to Charles Reed for £200, without the sheep. They had shorn 3000 at Tresillian that year, and took them to Orari, their station in South Canterbury.
Reed named the station Tresillian. He had 2200 sheep and lambs there in 1857, when John Carter was his manager. J. T. Ford took over the management in 1859 when the run was still only half stocked. Ford page 25built a six-roomed wooden cottage to replace the original sod hut. He managed Tresillian until 1864 when Reed sold it to John and Joseph Brabazon with 4500 sheep. In 1863 Sandy Knolls, the next station up the Waimakariri river, had been bought by Reed and added to Tresillian.
Joseph Brabazon only stayed in the Colony a few years. He then sold out to his brother and went home to Ireland, where he did well by fattening bullocks for the Liverpool market.
John Brabazon had been a partner with Samuel Butler at Mesopotamia, where Mt. Brabazon is named after him. He won the Canterbury Oaks in 1892 with Dora.
The original Tresillian Homestead was on the bank of the Waimakariri about two miles north-west of the Miners' Arms, but Brabazon moved to near the railway line at Aylesbury, where he made five or six thousand acres of the run freehold, and went in very extensively for farming. The land there is light, and he came to grief. The National Mortgage and Agency Company took over the place from him in 1895 and he went home to England and died there. The Company sold off the land bit by bit. The Aylesbury homestead now belongs to A. Boulnois.
Duncan Frazer (the pigeon shot) managed for the Company for some years, and was succeeded by Hugh Nurse, who has distinguished himself in another branch of sport and now trains horses at Riccarton—one of them Rapier, who won the New Zealand Cup in 1927.
I will give accounts of the Macdonalds and of Reed when I come to their other stations—Orari and Westerfield.