Awapiri

Current Owners: Graham and Bev Black

Area (ha): 7251

Awapiri, meaning by the river, is made up and owned as follows - the original Awapiri run of 6,880 ha leasehold bought by Mr Graham M Black from EL & JL Peter in 1966 (Mrs Beverlene J Black became a partner in 1984) and 371.3ha freehold bought in 1978 by the Riverview Family Trust from the Estate B A West. This was leased by GM & BJ Black until 2000 when Bev & Graham bought it and the trust was dissolved. Since 1993 Bev and Graham's son, Duncan, has farmed Awapiri with them, except for a period from July 2001 until February 2005 when Duncan and his wife, Michelle, leased The Bolton from Lindsay Ward. In September 2009 Bev and Graham bought the Riverview Cottage from Lyn and Wayne Wilson.

Heights vary from about 335m at the Awapiri homestead to 1,524m. The average yearly rainfall is approx 762mm. The flock is Merino (replacements retained). A Medium woolled stud was established in 1975 and a fine wool one in 2000. Rams are sold to clients in Marlborough, Canterbury & South Canterbury. Due to considerable development, top dressing etc the Blacks have been able to increase sheep numbers by 40 %. Angus & AXH cattle are bred - their numbers have been increased by 80%. Hay is bought in as well as some being made on the station. All ewe hoggets are grazed in vineyards over the winter period.

Awapiri was originally part of Weld's Hill - approx 2,023ha and part of Upton Downs - back part - 4,856ha held by the Assets Realisation Board. In the early 1900s it was leased by Mr Edmund Parsons, then for a short time by a Mr Bell. In 1915 Alf and Thos. Tomlinson (of the Jordan) took over. In 1916 a Mr Hansen and in 1920 Mr L L T Bush (assisted in his venture by a Scottish shepherd named Campbell). In 1921 Messrs. Robert McGovern, J W Colquhoun and Jas Brearley had an interest in the lease. For a time a Mr Buchanan (also a Scot) managed the property - the lease again being renewed by Mr Bush in 1927 but it was handed over the following year to Mr H L Tappley of Dunedin. In 1937 the holding passed to the Landon-Lanes (R G & B D) and in 1946 to Mr Ronald Landon- Lane who sold to the Peters (in about 1954).

The homestead and sheds were commenced by Mr Parsons. L L T Bush made substantial additions in1928. The Peters and Blacks have also done alterations - major alterations to the house were made in 1988. Duncan, Sally & Niki Black all had correspondence schooling for their primary education between 1973 and 1984.


A new woolshed was built on the site of the old one in 1981. (Keith Smith and sons Larry & Martin were the builders). Also in recent years, 2 new back huts, hay barns, a ram shed and two sets of sheep yards have been erected. Considerable fencing and water supply work has also been completed. In 2008 a new set of cattle yards was built on a new site 1.5 kms further up the road. In 1973 a road was completed out the back to Flynn's hut - as far as 15km.

The electric power went as far as Awapiri in 1961.

Gillian McLeod