Newspaper Article 1980 – History up for auction

History up for auction

A buzz of excitement is growing louder in rural circles throughout Hawke’s Bay as the date approaches for the sale of one of the area’s oldest and best known stations – Mangatarata.

Situated 7km from Waipukurau, the 1021 hectare (2524 acres) property will come under the auctioneer’s hammer at the Waipukurau Memorial Hall on March 14.

The station carries a 2 ½ -year-old Government valuation of $640,000 but those involved with the sale are confident of a closing bid closer to $2 million.

That would represent a price of just over $800 per acre.

The buyer will be getting not only the land, a six bedroomed homestead and numerous other houses and buildings, but also a slice of history.

Mangatarata was first taken up in 1849 and by 1853 the station covered 17,000 acres. Five years later it had almost doubled in size to 30,000 acres.

In 1908, when 22,000 acres were sold, the station was running 40,000 sheep – enough to keep a 24-stand woolshed busy. In those days bullock carts carried the wool to Napier via Waipawa.

It was in that year that the Macdonald family’s association with the station first began when James Macdonald leased 5000 acres. His grandson, Norman Macdonald, took over the running of the station in 1956 until his ‘ death in 1974.

His widow, who became Mrs Scrimgeour when she remarried two years ago, is now the chief one of five major shareholders in the property. There are numerous other minor shareholdings and it is partly because the whole concern has become rather unweildly that the family partnership is being dissolved on June 30.

If the buyer decides to live in the Mangatarata homestead he will find plenty of room. Built in 1890, the house rambles over some 4500 sq. ft.

The station also includes three three bedroomed houses, a five bedroomed shearers’ quarters, a six-stand woolshed, and hay barns with storage for 10,000 bales.

There is also a stable block and loft, workshop and garage, implement shed and a 100-ton covered super bin.

The station’s 1021 hectares are roughly divided into 120 of flat country with 636 of easy-to-medium hills running up to 265 of steeper hills.

The land is broken up into some 45 paddocks, plus additional holding paddocks. At the end of June, the station was carrying 8235 Romneys and more than 1100 Aberdeen Angus cattle.

Photo caption – MANGATARATA homestead . . . built in 1890 it has six bedrooms and rambles over 4500 sq. ft.

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  • James Macdonald
  • Norman Macdonald
  • Mrs Scrimgeour

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