Maranui_Street.jpg Maranui Street sign (2013). Mike Gooch. Word on the street image collection.

Its proximity to the racecourse might lead you to guess that this street was named after New Zealand's first winner of the Caulfield Cup, in 1908.

The colt, Maranui, owned by Mr Dan O'Brien, boasted the famous Carbine in his breeding.

However, when the street was named in 1946, it was the original estate, Maranui, that provided the name. The grant of land was made in 1892 to Newton King, who continued to develop the nearby Brooklands estate and rebuild the homestead there.

Maranui was sold to his colleague James George, and in 1901 the property was transferred to Clement William Govett.

He established an extensive and beautiful garden which was often opened to the public, along with the neighbouring Brooklands.

Mr Govett was active in the community as chairman of the Recreation Grounds Board and as a committee member of the first Taranaki Poultry & Canary Club.

The Govett name is also remembered in New Plymouth because of the generosity of his daughter Monica in establishing the bequest that nanced a gallery, Govett-Brewster, dedicated to contemporary art.

Another owner of Maranui was Mr Thomas List, whose name was given to another nearby street. Among other achievements, he was a founding member of New Plymouth Rotary and established the Crippled Children's Society. Keen on the protection of the natural environment, he was involved with the New Plymouth Beautifying Society and the Egmont National Park Board. He was also a successful owner of the Taranaki Daily News.

In 1946, part of the estate was taken by the Government for the building of state housing, and the naming of the street dates from that time.

This story was originally published in the Taranaki Daily News.

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