Vogue Circle runs off Carrington Street opposite Vogeltown Park. The name was chosen in 2020 to reflect its Vogeltown location as well as the stylish nature of the new residential subdivision – “vogue” comes from an Old French word meaning “to sail” or “to set a course”.

The one-way loop road was originally going to be called Vogue Lane but both Ngāti Tairi and Ngāti Te Whiti hapū as well as Land Information New Zealand approved Vogue Circle instead, suggested by New Plymouth District Council as more appropriate given its shape.

The 5510 square metre subdivision was developed in 2019 by Darcy and Debbie Keene, managing directors of Naki Developments, and is located on what used to be the site of Cambrian Engineering.

Established in 1925 by two Englishmen, Horace Ayckbourn and Arthur Atchley, Cambrian is one of the country’s oldest engineering companies. It began operations with eight employees on Water Lane in the central city but as the business expanded it required more space and moved to Carrington Street in 1937. The surrounding area was still farmland – it would be another 12 years before work began on Vogeltown Park, which was then a gorse-covered gully. At one point in the 1950s the company considered buying all the land up to Parsons Street for its operations but the majority of the block became residential instead. The factory buildings were gradually surrounded by garden features so as to muffle any noise from the machinery, and to beautify the site for the benefit of its neighbours as the area became more built up.

Employing over 100 staff at its peak, Cambrian produced a huge range of products, everything from cheese vats and milking machines to school playground equipment. Bomb components and fire fighting apparatus were manufactured during the Second World War and by the 1950s an automotive arm was reconditioning engines on the Carrington Street site. Ironsand from Douglas, near Stratford, was used to make moulds for bronze fittings, hundreds of thousands of which were exported by Cambrian all over New Zealand and Australia.

Cambrian Engineering staff were relocated to Bell Block in 2017. The first completed home on the new street, 1 Vogue Circle, went on sale in April 2023.


This story was originally published in the Taranaki Daily News.

Related Information


Jim Smale talks about the history of Cambrian Engineering


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