Awaroa Legacy is the story of Lynette Wilson's family from the time her great-great-great grandfather arrived in New Zealand with the first official British settlement fleet to Nelson in 1841.
by Carol Dawber, historian novelist
Lynette Wilson, direct descendant of the first European farmers at Awaroa
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About Awaroa Legacy
Awaroa Legacy is the story of Lynette Wilson's family from the time her great-great-great grandfather arrived in New Zealand with the first official British settlement fleet to Nelson in 1841. Lynette's great-grandparents, William and Adele Hadfield, were the first European farmers in the Awaroa inlet (now within the boundaries of Abel Tasman National Park). Today, the Wilson family owns and operates Wilsons Abel Tasman.
Guests of the Wilson family stay at Meadowbank Homestead - Awaroa, holding memories of the time, back in 1863, when young William and Harry Hadfield came to break in the land, tend their stock, plant gardens and build their boats. In 1878 they brought their new brides home. Adele and Annie raised families here, investing their hopes and dreams in the nineteen children who grew up in their two isolated households.
By 1900 the world had changed, families had come and gone from Awaroa, there were sawmills, shops and schools and a new generation of Hadfields was ready to raise their own families. However, poor granite soils and the economic depression in the 1930s dashed all hopes of a thriving settlement at Awaroa and the forest began to reclaim land broken in by ill-fated settlers. Meadowbank Homestead is filled with memories of William and Adele Hadfield's family. Their personal dreams and tragedies are retold in Awaroa Legacy.
Abel Tasman National Park today is a place to take time out, to consider the world from a different perspective and to enjoy the simple peace of beach, bush and solitude as those first settlers enjoyed them more than a hundred years ago. This is our Awaroa legacy.