Topic: Kapu Grove (TDN 6/10/2018)

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Kapu Grove

Kapu Grove in the New Plymouth suburb of Whalers Gate is a double cul-de-sac and originally two names were chosen to reflect this – Kapu Place and Tarata Grove.

The process of subdividing the street was first begun in the late 1960s, however it was only granted Taranaki County Council approval in 1980. Council documents show that it was decided two names for such a small number of sections was “unnecessary”. The name Kapu Grove was chosen by the developers, Beazley Homes.

While most of the properties on Kapu Grove date from the development of the subdivision, the street is home to one property with links to the early settlement of New Plymouth. The white cottage at number 7 was the third home constructed on this spot, all by settler John Litchfield Newman. The first was built in the mid-1850s and lived in by Newman and his wife Harriet Matilda Honeyfield and their five children. It was known as Donnybrook Farm.

At the advent of the First Taranaki War in 1860, the Newman family relocated to Nelson leaving the home vacant. In an effort to protect his property from afar, Newman placed a notice in the newspaper in 1861 threatening to prosecute anyone caught chopping down timber, removing fences or growing crops on his farm.

The home did not survive the war, the Taranaki Herald simply noting on 2 March 1861 that, “Newman’s house (Donnybrook) was burnt yesterday”. The home was rebuilt when the family returned, only to burn down again in 1866. The western part of the home standing today was probably constructed later that year, while the remainder of the house was built later.

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Kapu Grove (TDN 6/10/2018)

City:New Plymouth