Views
10 months ago

Fitzgerald's Town

Speaking to the meeting

Speaking to the meeting he stressed that low prices would affect land sales and so reduce available funds for necessary public works in the province. He urged that farmers support the development of one strong export company which could do better than several competing companies who, with limited funds, could easily spoil the market with their mistakes. The company would need able men to manage and operate it without the benefit of state support, as some had suggested, which could only be met from taxation. A committee was formed to liaise with a group said to be investigating the establishment of such a company at Kaiapoi, but the outcome was disappointing. Kaiapoi farmers had stumped the province seeking support, but found that although the idea was a popular one few farmers were prepared to invest in it. The scheme came to nothing, as did a similar attempt at Selwyn Forks. Two years later the Revd. Bluett, President of the Ellesmere Farmers' Club, arranged a shipment of members' wheat to England for which they received a good price of five shillings and six pence a bushel. At about the same time the manager of the Bank of New Zealand, J.L. Coster, bought wheat at the local price of two shillings and six pence a bushel, exported it to England, and there realised another one shilling and six pence a bushel. 2 These were encouraging trends, but farmers were also worried that duties imposed on imported produce by the Australian colonies would affect their markets and unsuccessfully petitioned the government to erect similar barriers against imports from Australia. It was time to organise! 40

14. McLaren Clayton Mill owned by Hugh Bennett The Lincoln Fair Company The first farmers sold their stock to dealers as best they could, but as the district became more closely settled the need for formal sales became obvious. The first such sale in the district took place in January 1867 3 when Messrs Ollivier and Co. held an auction sale of stock at the Wheatsheaf Inn, Shands Track. Regular auction sales followed, but there was dissatisfaction that the fees demanded by the auctioneers were too high, especially because of the hard financial times that prevailed. In order to avoid paying these local farmers decided to organise fairs at which auction sales were disallowed. The use of the Wheatsheaf Inn yards was promised and the first fair was held there on 20 October 1868 4 . Quarterly sales followed, but their attraction was short lived and although the anniversary sale was advertised for 19 October 1869, there is no record that it was ever held. While the fairs at the Wheatsheaf were losing their appeal there was a growing demand for similar sales at Lincoln, leading to the formation of the Lincoln Fair Company. 5 The company was 41

New Zealand's Premium Food & Wine Tourism Experiences
The 2012 Highlights Report of Universities New Zealand - Te Pōkai ...
S . A . G A L L E R Y SEPTEMBER —OCTOBER 1990 154 Art in the ...