Kaipara Deer Farmers anniversary

by Helen Martin
In the first week of September, many of those associated with Kaipara Deer Farmers over the years gathered at South Head Golf Club to celebrate the association’s 40th anniversary. The evening began as it meant to continue, with Chair Ian Bristow opening proceedings by encouraging anyone with a story to share it, “and if you haven’t got a tale to tell, make one up.”
It was an evening of celebration, as the history of deer farming in the area was recalled and members who have now passed away were remembered.
The first Chair, Colin Wilson, whose life as a deer farmer on Inland Road began when he bought 10 deer as a tax write-off,told of how the initial meeting, which was held at South Head Golf Club in October 1978, attracted 50 interested farmers.
Founding member Dave Chisholm and Les Comer talked about the early days and Roy Monk was remembered as the first South Head deer farmer. In amongst the hilarity and the tall tales there were a few tears as speakers talked about the challenges and triumphs of pioneering a new industry and the colourful people who had made it happen.

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