Struan_Ave1.jpg Struan Avenue sign (2011). Mike Gooch. Word on the street image collection.

As with Māori, the Scots have descent groups or clans that relate to particular estates or areas. So it is with the clan Robertson that their ancestral home is at Struan. Originally known as the clan Donnachaidh, they became known as Robertson after the murder of King James 1 in 1437; when their chief, Robert Riach (or Reoch), brought about the capture of the Master of Atholl, Sir Patrick Graham, the head conspirator in the king's murder at Black Friars Monastery. In gratitude, James II made Robert's land at Struan into a Barony.

There after the chiefs and members of the clan adopted the title of Robertson or more correctly Struan Robertson to the clan. Despite being loyal to the Stewarts, the extent of the estate changes over the next few centuries, depending upon various alliances, and the whim of the monarchy. At times they were dispossessed of part or all their land, only to have it returned to them some time later. Unfortunately for the current Robertson's, virtually all of the estate has now been lost or sold.

So, when Mr C. C. Robertson formed this avenue off Carrington Street in New Plymouth, he dedicated it to his ancestral roots in Scotland and named it Struan. The 1949 electoral roll has two C. C. Robertson's living in Struan Ave.  At number 5 is Colin Charles a dairy produce grader and at number 10 is Colin Charles jnr a carpenter. It is therefore a safe bet that they are father and son, and the developers of the street.

This story was originally published in the Taranaki Daily News.

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