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The Early Canterbury Runs: Containing the First, Second and Third (new) Series

Waireka — (Run 16, re-numbered 581)

(Run 16, re-numbered 581)

Waireka, which lies on the plain below Homebush, between the Hawkins and the Selwyn, was taken up in May, 1852, by William Kenneth Macdonald for himself and his brothers Allen R. and Angus Macdonald. It contained eight thousand acres.

The Macdonalds were experienced squatters from Australia who brought both money and sheep to New Zealand. As I said before, they also owned Tresillian.

In 1853 they took up country on the Orari River in South Canterbury and decided to devote themselves to developing that. They sold Waireka, which they called Ivanhoe during the short time they had it, to George Arthur Emelius Ross on 10th September, 1854. Ross had been a cadet with Henry Tancred at Malvern Hills. Ross had 1300 sheep at Waireka in 1856, which had increased by 1858 to 2000. He took Charles Harper, a son of the first Bishop of Christchurch, into partnership. Ross became the first Clerk of the Canterbury Provincial Council, of which he was afterwards a member. He left Harper to manage the station. Ross and Harper sold Waireka about 1862 to Karslake and Anson. Ross and Harper afterwards had Lake Coleridge in partnership, and then Mt. Fourpeaks and Clay-page 35ton on lease from Walker and Clogstoun, where the 1867 snowstorm ruined them.

Ross died in Christchurch in 1876, aged 47. Harper afterwards had the Hackthorne and Upper Hackthorne estates near Ashburton and died during the Great War.

Karslake and Anson sold Waireka in 1867 to two brothers of the Rt. Honourable Joseph Chamberlain, who I do not think ever came to New Zealand—at least they did not live here.

Karslake and Anson bought Mt. Torlesse soon after they sold Waireka.

Reginald Wade managed for the Chamberlains, and at one time had no fewer than ten cadets on the station, which was a record until it was broken in the late 'nineties at Waimate where they had twelve. One of the Wade's cadets was J. H. C. Bond of Manuka Point and Mt. Hutt who died in the winter of 1924.

After Wade's time the Chamberlains let the station to various tenants. The Bangor people bought the freehold of some of the run and secured some of the leasehold, but the Chamberlains made four or five thousand acres freehold. Cardale and Berry, the tenants in 1879, ran only about 300 of their sheep on leasehold. The Chamberlains worked the station again themselves from 1882 to 1886, when it carried about 5000 sheep. They then let it to Wade in partnership with Fletcher. From them the lease passed to Cresswell, the Hororata butcher. Cresswell transferred it to William Broughton in 1901. Broughton went home to England later on and bought the freehold from the Chamberlains. This fine property carried 3000 sheep but in the late 1920's Broughton subdivided it and transferred it to his sons.