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March-April 2015

The Avondale
Historical Journal
Official Publication of the Avondale-Waterview Historical
Society Incorporated

An Avondale Peace Ball, July 1919

An intriguing image recently posted to me by AWHS member Muriel Wells-Green -- showing a “peace ball” held
in the old Avondale Public Hall (now thewooden building next to the Hollywood Cinema in St Georges Road.)
All I can find on it in Papers Past is this:
Next meeting of the
Avondale-Waterview Historical
At St Ninians, St Georges Road
(opp. Hollywood Cinema)
SATURDAY, 4 April 2015, 2.00 pm

"On Friday night the Banwell Club held a peace
ball, which was a great success. Never in the
history of Avondale has the hall been more artistically and tastefully decorated. The whole of the
ceiling was made to represent a huge spider's web,
in red, white and blue. very large number of guests
were present and dancing was the feature of the
evening. An innovation which was rather novel
was provided when several of the dances, which

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the orchestra played to patriotic airs, were vocalised
by the dancers, and taken up by the chaperons and other visitors. A very nice supper was provided, at which
the tables were tastefully decorated. Messrs P Adams
and J Goring acted as MC's, and Morrows orchestra
provided the music.”
(Auckland Star 22 July 1919 p.8)
If anyone's got more info -- do let us know.

John Bollard —
the Father of Avondale
2015 marks the centenary of the death of one of
Avondale’s early settlers, a farmer, an estate agent, a
champion for progress in the district, and arguably the
greatest resident public representative for Avondale,
John Bollard. He dominated Avondale community life
and politics for over 50 years, and always believed in
our future. He was a man of the people, “Honest
John” Bollard, and was greatly mourned when he
passed away. The following are excerpts from the
newspapers of the time of his death.

John Bollard, who for many years represented the
Eden constituency in Parliament, was taken to a private
hospital at Auckland on Sunday suffering from a serious internal complaint. He was operated upon during
the day, and is progressing as well as can be expected.
(Fielding Star, 23 March 1915)
Mr John Bollard, ex-member for Eden, died on
Tuesday, afternoon, aged 75 years, after an operation
which took place on Sunday. Deceased leaves a
widow, five sons and five daughters. He was a cousin
of Mr John Finlay, of Tokaora. Mr Bollard was first
elected to Parliament as member for Eden in
December, 1896, and represented that district continuously until quite recently.
(Hawera & Normanby Star, 24 March 1915)
The late Mr. Bollard had been in indifferent health for
some time, and on Sunday he was taken to a private
hospital suffering from a serious internal complaint.
An operation was necessary, and it was successfully
performed, but yesterday morning the patient showed
alarming signs of collapse, and died during the afternoon. The late Mr. Bollard was born in County
Wicklow, Ireland, in 1839. He arrived in New Zealand
in 1860, and in his earliest days of colonial life he
served with the Auckland Militia in quelling the Native

Above, from the Christchurch Sun, 27 March 1915

rebellion. In all his adult life Mr. Bollard took an active
interest in the affairs of his district and of his country …
He was for some years chairman of the Auckland
Hospital and Charitable Aid Board, and a member of the
Eden Licensing Committee. He entered the House in
1896 as member for Eden, defeating Mr. Jackson
Palmer. This seat he held continuously for 18 years, retiring only at the expiry of the last Parliament when,
owing to advancing years and failing health he decided
not to contest the seat again. In politics he was a member
of the Reform Party, a sturdy advocate of the freehold
It seems John Bollard had a fondness for check suits, not
something you’d know from the photographic portraits of him,
but the Observer was both quick and keen to use this to identify him in their cartoons.
At right, an observation on the Charitable Aid Board, from

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Observer, 14 March 1908

Observer, 25 July 1903

Observer, 6 A pril 1907

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tenure when the tenure issue was one of the greatest
before the country, and generally he was a stout friend
of the man making his living on the land. Indeed, on the
subject of agriculture, Mr. Bollard was acknowledged
an expert. He was also keenly interested in primary education, .and from the inception of the workers' homes
scheme he advocated the establishment of rural workers' homes. While he was an unswerving supporter of
his party and its principles, the party contacts in the
House had no charms for him, and he kept almost
entirely out of the arena when party wrangles were being fought out. So it happened that however bitter the
feeling might be against the party, Mr Bollard was by
common consent excluded. He had no single enemy in
the House, and his honest and straightforward character
won him universal esteem. Mr R F Bollard, member for
Raglan in the last, and in the present House, is a son of
the deceased gentleman.
(Dominion, 24 March 1915. The part I left out was
where the Dominion mistakenly thought John Bollard’s
home was Mt Eden rather than Avondale, probably
confused by the name Eden as the electorate which
spanned most of the isthmus and part of West Auckland,
and the Eden Licensing Committee. Newspaper journalists could write as much in error then as now.)
During the Maori war he superintended a large shipment of horses from New South Wales for the Armstrong Artillery, serving in the Waikato district, and
was afterward for some time in the Auckland militia.
He eventually settled down at Avondale, near Auckland, where he resided ever since. Mr Bollard has taken
an active part in public affairs for the last 40 years. He
was chairman of the Avondale Road Board for 29 years
… He was a justice of the peace, and for many years
acted as coroner for the district extending from Mount
Albert to the West Coast. He has been chairman of the
Auckland Hospital and Charitable Aid Board and member of the Eden Licensing Committee. He took a great
interest in agriculture, and acted as a judge at shows for
many years.

Year's Day. He emigrated at the age of twenty to
Australia, where for a few months he tried his fortune
on the goldfields. Unenamoured of his prospects in
search of the yellow metal, his eyes turned to the young
colony of New Zealand, and he landed in 1861 at Auckland in charge of 200 horses for use by the militia in the
Maori war, which had recently broken out. On May 9
of the same year he was married at St. John's College,
his wife having also but shortly arrived from her native
Ireland. Mr and Mrs Bollard immediately took up their
residence at Avondale, where they had lived ever since,
Mr Bollard farming, and subsequently becoming a land
agent and valuer. During the Maori war he served as a
sergeant of militia, first at Otahuhu and later at the
Avondale blockhouse.
As an active participant in public affairs,
Mr. Bollard held a record unequalled in New Zealand,
for the year following his marriage he was elected as a
member of the Avondale School Committee, of which
he was still a member at the time of his death, having
served the whole 54 years on it, and 51 of those years
as its chairman. At the celebration of his jubilee as a
member, in 1911, he was presented with an illuminated
address, the presentation being made by the Minister of
Education of the day, the Hon. George Fowlds, while
among those who attended the function was the present
Prime Minister. At the last meeting of the Committee,
held about three weeks ago, he was present.
Another public body on which he served long and faithfully was the Avondale Road Board, of which he was
chairman for 28 years, while at one time he also acted
as its engineer, for which post he was qualified by early
experience in Ireland. He was also a staunch churchman, having been one of the founders and original trustees of St. Jude's Church, Avondale, and for many years
a churchwarden. Among his other public offices, he
was a Justice of the Peace for nearly 40 years, coroner
at Avondale for about 30 years, a member of the old
Eden Licensing Committee, and a member for many
years of the Auckland Hospital and Charitable Aid

(Otago Daily Times, 24 March 1915)
The news that Mr. John Bollard, the highly esteemed
and veteran legislator, who for nearly twenty years represented Eden in the House of Representatives, and was
one of the pioneers of the Avondale district, passed
away yesterday, will be received with general regret
throughout Auckland, while a wide circle of friends all
over the Dominion will be saddened on hearing of his
demise …
The late Mr. Bollard was a native of County Wicklow,
Ireland, where he was born 75 years ago last New

Mr Bollard's Parliamentary career began in 1896, when
he was elected for Eden, and he held the seat through
all political changes till his retirement before last election. “Honest John” Bollard being one of the few members whom his political opponents regarded as being
safely entrenched against all attacks by his hold on the
affections of the Eden electors, this was perhaps the
more remarkable in those days of noisy politicians from
the fact that he was known as one of the "silent" members of the House. The veteran member for Eden was
not a rhetorician, and seldom spoke, but when his voice
was raised he spoke from honest convictions, and was

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accorded an attention denied to many a glib and silvertongued orator. His sterling work on the Agricultural,
Pastoral, and Stock Committee, and his advocacy of the
establishment of an agricultural college for the North
Island are too well known to need emphasis, while his
memory must always be dear to workers as having been
the first member of Parliament to urge the establishment of a workers' homes scheme. Upon his announcement last session of his intention to retire from politics,
Mr. Bollard was presented with testimonials of his long
and faithful service to the country, and of the high esteem in which he was held by his fellow members on
both sides of the House.
For some years past the late Mr. Bollard had suffered
from intermittent attacks by an internal complaint, but
his general health had been fairly good till last Sunday,
when a severe seizure made it necessary for him to undergo an immediate operation. He appeared to make
favourable progress till yesterday, morning, when a
change set in for the worse, and he died peacefully at
3.30 p.m. yesterday. He is survived by his widow, who
is also 75 years of age, and ten children — five sons
and five daughters — of whom the eldest is Mr R
F Bollard, M.P. for Raglan.
The funeral will take place at three o'clock to-morrow
afternoon at the Avondale Anglican Cemetery.

graveside. The mourners all followed the hearse on
foot, the cemetery being near the house in Rosebank
Road, where the late Mr Bollard had resided for over
fifty years, and the service, which was conducted by the
Ven Archdeacon Calder, Vicar of All Saints, was an
impressive one.
(Auckland Star 26 March 1915)
The cortege left the house at Rosebank Road, Avondale
— over 50 years the home of Mr. Bollard — at halfpast three o'clock. Opposite the residence were drawn
up 300 children from the Avondale and New Lynn
schools, their presence being in recognition of
Mr. Bollard's 51 years' service as chairman of the
Avondale School Committee. The cemetery is close to
the house, and the hearse was the only vehicle in the
procession, the mourners following on foot.
(NZ Herald 26 March 1915)
The members of the Auckland Board of Education
adopted a motion of condolence at this morning’s meeting with the relatives of the late Mr John Bollard; the
Board at the same time recording a minute appreciation
of Mr Bollard’s excellent services to the cause of education in the province and in the Dominion.
(Auckland Star 31 March 1915)

At last night's meeting of the Mount Albert Borough
Council feeling reference was made to the late legislator, and it was decided to forward a letter of condolence
to his widow and family in their bereavement.
(Auckland Star 24 March 1915)
The funeral of the late Mr John Bollard at the Avondale
Anglican Cemetery yesterday afternoon was attended
by nearly 2000 people, among the number being the
Prime Minister, the Right Hon W F Massey, Messrs F
W Lang, A M Myers, C J Parr, A. Harris, J S Dickson,
and C H Poole, members elect of Parliament, and the
Hon T Thompson, MLC. Ex-members of Parliament
who had sat while Mr. Bollard was a member, included
the Hon. George Fowlds, Hon. J A Tole, KC, and the
Hon E Mitchelson, Messrs E W Alison, J H Bradney,
F Lawry, F McGuire and A Kidd. Most of the public
bodies in and around Auckland were also represented.
The chief mourners were Messrs. R F Bollard, memberelect for Raglan, A Bollard, H Bollard, sons of the deceased legislator. Messrs. Bailey, Milne, and Waters,
sons-in-law, Messrs. John Bollard. Arthur and Harry
Bailey, grandsons, and Mr. W Berm, brother-in-law.
The wreaths and other floral tributes were so numerous
that the services of 50 of the elder boys from the
Avondale school were needed to carry them to the

NZ Herald photo

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Boundaries ...
We don’t have quite the same problem as Epsom, further east on the isthmus, in terms of defining what is and
what isn’t Avondale and Waterview, but on viewing a
map of a survey of Avondale residents done recently by
a local community group, I realised that an old question
had indeed arisen yet again in our history: how much of
Auckland is Avondale?
The map above features a dotted line showing approximately what Auckland Council today class as Avondale
and Waterview, according to their rates information.
The boundary between Avondale and Waterview is simple — a line at the junction of Great North and Blockhouse Bay Roads, north of which is Waterview. Waterview’s eastern boundary is the Oakley Creek. But
Avondale’s eastern and southern boundaries are a bit

less straight-cut. The curving line of the Oakley Creek is
followed, so we have Avondale Heights included, then
down towards the New North Road, where the rise towards the Baptist Church is Avondale. The creek heads
under Bollard Avenue, then on to mark out the Methuen
Road area and nearby streets, towards Richardson Road.
Then following Richardson Road on the western side,
until reaching the rear of properties at John Davis Road.
The line then heads generally west, just north of Margate Road, following the course of the Whau Stream
towards the end, cutting into Olympic Park to the main
Whau River.
The original Whau Highway District went a bit further
west, including Portage Road in New Lynn up until early in the 20th century, and of course stretched down to

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the Manukau incorporating what is now Blockhouse
Bay from the late 1860s.
Whau North, at the boundary with New Lynn
The “townships” of Whau North (Portage Road to Taylor Street, including Olympic Park) and Whau South
(much of Blockhouse Bay east of the roundabout at the
shops) predated highway districts in the area and had
their own changeable boundaries.
The townships were drawn up by the Auckland Provincial Council in the late 1850s in response to the early
proposals for a Whau Canal project, and first promoted
for sale towards the end of 1857. There were some
sales, but most of the land remained unsold. Under the
Common Schools Act of 1869, some of these unsold
sections in both townships were set aside as education
John Bollard in December 1882, as chairman of the
Avondale Road Board, wrote to the Crown Lands
Board asking for Whau North and Whau South to be
resurveyed, a recreation reserve set aside, and for bridges to be constructed (possibly over the Whau and Avondale Streams). The 1883 resurvey of Whau North was
for town allotments in terms of size – this was reclassified as suburban land in March 1885. At the same time
the Crown Lands Board determined that, as the name
“Whau” had “associations with the name which might
affect the sale of the allotments”, that the name
“Gordon” should be adopted instead, after the hero of
Khartoum. A month later, realising that there was another town called “Gordon”, the Board decided to rename Whau North as “Wolseley”, after yet anther British Imperial military hero, Sir Garnet Wolseley (what is
now Tiverton Road was once Garnet Road).

need and the financing of a new Whau Bridge at Great
North Road, an alternative was put forward to have a
road formed past Hunt’s brickworks and through the
Wolseley township, to provide an alternative crossing
near the confluence of the Whau and Avondale streams.
This later became Wolseley Road, but the alternative
crossing remained just a wooden pedestrian footbridge
until the 1960s.
In July 1929, after the 1927 amalgamation with Auckland City, it was proposed to name Wolseley Road as
Bancroft Street (by the way, St Georges Road was be
known as Taylor Street, continuing the existing road, but
this didn’t happen). However, the Wolseley name remained until August 1932, when Wolverton Street was
formally adopted by Auckland City Council.

The Avondale-Waterview Historical Society is proud to
be a member of the New Zealand History Federation.
More information at their website:
Or scan the code below.

In February 1889, with the Avondale Road Board in
discussions with the Minister of Public Works over the

The Avondale Historical Journal
Published by:
the Avondale-Waterview Historical Society Inc.
Editor: Lisa J. Truttman
Society contact:
19 Methuen Road, Avondale, Auckland 0600
Phone: (09) 828-8494, 027 4040 804
Society information:
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