George Kidd 1867-1950: Gentleman, Mayor and Man of Property


George was the son of Robert and Sarah Kidd of Hope.

George Kidd land agent, man of property and Mayor of Richmond 1925-27

George Kidd land agent, man of property and Mayor of Richmond 1925-27

In 1894, at the age of 27 he married Chrissina Edith Newth.  They had one child, Merle, who later moved to Christchurch where she died unmarried.

Jean Sutton in her book How Richmond Grew describes him as a very tall, stately gentleman.  He was meticulous in dress, and sported a well-trimmed beard.  The wags of Richmond called him “Billy Goat Kidd.”  He worked for some time as a real-estate agent for F. & D. Edwards.

George served one term as mayor of Richmond from 1925-1927.  He owned a motor car and with his wife would chaperone elderly widowed ladies on outings into Nelson to fulfil appointments.  He aslo acted as an accountant for these folk.

On 10th March, 1910, he moved into a new house at 8 Edward St, Richmond.  It was an elegant villa built entirely of heart rimu, probably by W.E. Wilkes.  It had high panelled ceilings, ornately carved mantels, polished floors, high skirting boards and solid timber doors.

No 8 Edward St (formerly Roseneath) named Mapledurham by the Grigg family after their home village in England

No 8 Edward St (formerly Roseneath) named Mapledurham by the Grigg family after their home village in England

A curved carriage-way led to elegant two-storied stables at the rear.  These were converted into a residence by Mr C. Wiren in 1938 who later sold to Mr Simpson.  In the 1950’s Ron and Merle Craig bought the Stables and lived there with their family for 43 years.

 This is how the stables looked when Ron and Merle Craig purchased it in the early 1950's

This is how the stables looked when Ron and Merle Craig purchased it in the early 1950’s

The stables at the time of our visit in September 2014

The stables at the time of our visit in September 2014

George died in 1950 aged 83 and his wife a few years later.  They are buried in Section 3, Row 5 of the Richmond cemetery and for a man who had been mayor of Richmond the inscription on their tombstone is remarkably brief.  It reads:  In loving memory of George Kidd and his wife Edith.

Deborah and Giles Grigg turned 8 Edward St into a B & B.  They changed the name from Roseneath to Mapledurham after their village in England.

Currently, Mapledurham is owned by John and Carol Syme and The Stables by Jonathan and Jayne Watkins.

AcknowledgementSutton, Jean How Richmond Grew, 1992.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: