The Puketapu Oral History Recordings

Betty McGregor.PNG

Alf Bell - heritage recording

Arthur Driver - heritage recording

Doreen Dunckley - heritage recording

Betty McGregor - heritage recording

Bill Lester - heritage recording

Keith Fleming - heritage recording

Doris Ford - heritage recording

Ross Harvie - heritage recording

Margaret Puddy - heritage recording

Alice Pile - heritage recording

Neil Roy - heritage recording

Margaret Sheat - heritage recording

Noel Sheat - heritage recording

About the Puketapu Trust Oral Histories

The Puketapu Community Trust decided that there was a wealth of human experience residing in the Waihemo ward and believed that this is best preserved through oral history recordings of notable identities who have a long association with the Waihemo area. With the expert assistance of Rob Webb, broadcaster and oral historian of Wellington, we now have thirteen completed interviews, with plans to carry out more interviews in November 2022.

The criteria for choosing interviewees is simply their involvement through work or community interests in the Waihemo area. The Trust has attempted to select as wide a range as possible, but naturally there is more towards agricultural and farming businesses.

Listeners will learn how, 80 years after the event, World War Two still has a strong effect on families, especially if loved ones were killed or wounded, physically and psychologically. Even World War One trauma lingers in the grandparent or even parent generation of the interviewees.

The Great Depression of the late 1920s and early 1930s blighted lives as opportunities for further education were lost to the urgent need to seek work and provide additional income. Even in the 1950s not all farms had access to electricity or phone services.

In the mid 1980s Palmerston had three banks, a large post office, a manual telephone exchange, two butchers, two service stations and workshops, two hotels, a cottage hospital with two resident doctors, and a railway station with freight and passenger services — all this has almost disappeared so that even those who have only lived in the district for 40 years have now seen great changes in the services a junction town like Palmerston can offer.