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Taranaki Street Names


Welcome to the Taranaki Street Names basket. This basket contains articles that are published in the Taranaki Daily News' "Word on the Street" column.  The articles are compiled by staff in the Taranaki Research Centre I Te Pua Wānanga o Taranaki at Puke Ariki.  If your street isn't here, please contact us.

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Raiomiti Street.

Raiomiti Street 

On Saturday mornings in winter Raiomiti Street in New Plymouth can be chaotic. The netball courts at the end of the road are the destination for hundreds of people each weekend.

The busy sports facility had a much quieter beginning. In 1930 the New Plymouth Borough Council purchased a 1.7ha block of land next to the Waiwhakaiho River. The park planned for the spot did not immediately fire-up Fitzroy locals into action. In fact, little happened until 1944 when a committee was set up under the enthusiastic

Olson Street.

Olson Street 

A line of mature English trees on the left-hand side of Egmont Road going out of Egmont Village towards the mountain, are a modern-day connection to one of the first local settler families. So too is nearby Olson Street which crosses the road just outside the village.

Mary (nee Harrison) and Edward Olson moved out to their forest covered land at Egmont Village  about 1874 after Edward was granted the land when the Armed Constabulary was disbanded. Edward, along with his brother and a friend, arrived from

Margaret Alice Close.

Margaret Alice Close 

This cul-de-sac in the New Plymouth suburb of Whalers Gate is named after a remarkable, yet quite ordinary woman: Margaret Alice Megaw (née Baxter).

Born in 1935, Margaret attended Vogeltown Primary and New Plymouth Girls High School. After leaving school, she worked as a switch board operator at the New Plymouth Chief Post Office.

She married Bill (William James) Megaw in 1956, and together they worked on their farm on Barrett Road. Their first home was the house known as ‘Donnybrook’ which is still standing today

Caplen Street.

Caplen Street 

Caplen Street in Hāwera runs in a right-angle between Collins Street and South Road. It is named after the Caplen family who owned and subdivided the land where the street is now.

Harry Caplen was born in Midhurst, Sussex, England in 1850 and came to New Zealand in 1867. He began life here farming and working on the goldfields. Perhaps tired of the outdoor life he started work for a solicitor in Greymouth. While living in Greymouth he married Emma Agnes Dew and the couple had five

Francis Vernon Douglas .

Francis Douglas Drive 

As you might expect this new street is located adjacent to the school that it is named after. Francis Douglas Drive runs off the busy roundabout on Tukapa Street where traffic also joins from Omata Road.

A 1950 aerial photograph of Westown provides an interesting view of the neighbourhood as it looked 70 years ago. A notable feature was the Westown Golf Course, and Francis Douglas Drive runs through what would have been part of the old course.

The golf course opened with 12 holes in

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