Topic: Kellyville Heights (TDN 30/04/2017)

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Kellyville Heights 

On 3 December 1975 the Taranaki Herald printed a letter from two New Plymouth residents who signed themselves, "Dorset Davie and Dora". The couple were upset that a nearby street in Merrilands was to be named Kellyville Heights.

Davie and Dora demanded to know from the mayor just who or what Kellyville was, "A place or a person?".

Surely, they continued, he knew that New Plymouth's first immigrants came from not only Devonshire, but also Cornwall, Dorset and Somerset. Perhaps with one eye closed at the time they suggested that, "Dorset alone would fill a city's need (for new street names) for a century."

The mayor at the time, Mr Denny Sutherland, replied that, "it was about time we focused on celebrating people and events closer to home."

In this case the name had been suggested by the owner of the land and developer of the subdivision, Owen Finer. 'Kelly' connected him with his family history and the suffix 'ville' is a French word more commonly associated with towns and villages.

As Mr Finer had given many years of service to the city, the mayor thought it entirely appropriate to agree to his request.

Owen Cecil Finer was awarded a Queen's Service Medal in 1977 for services to the community. He had been deputy chairperson of the Ohura County Council, chairman of the Ohura Rabbit Board and, after shifting to New Plymouth, chairperson of the committee controlling Chalmers Home.

He died on 7 June 1996, aged 92, at his residence - fittingly, in Kellyville Heights.

An olive branch was extended to Davie and Dora by the mayor when he suggested that while New Plymouth already had a Davie (actually Davies), perhaps there would be the opportunity for a street named Dora sometime in the future.

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Kellyville Heights (TDN 30/04/2017)

City:New Plymouth