Pam retires after three decades as secretary

Pamela Taylor still spends a lot of the time at the Howick Historical Village. She is pictured in front of the Puhinui Homestead which was built in 1861. It is where the textile collection is kept. Photo Nick Krause

Pamela Taylor remembers the very first building that was plonked at the site of what is now the Howick Historical Village.

“I think it was the parsonage,” says Pamela, who recalls with fondness those formative days of the village.

She has recently retired from the Howick & Districts Historical Society where she was secretary for more than 30 years.

“I was on the committee when Alan’s (Alan La Roche is a Howick historian and author) vision about the historical village (came into being).

“(It was all done) under Alan’s guidance. It was a lot of fun and a lot of hard work.

There were working bees every Saturday for several years.”

Pamela was asked to stand on the committee (formerly the Howick Historical Society Incorporated) in 1976 and has been on the committee since, retiring at the AGM in September last year.

She has a strong affinity for the area. She was born in Howick and her father Dick Newton always had a business in Howick, a carrying company with five trucks.

Pamela attended Howick District High School (site of Howick Intermediate) then went on to Epsom Girls Grammar School followed by business college in Albert Street in the city.

Qualified as a shorthand typist, Pamela worked for the Justice Department’s Lands & Deeds division.

Married in 1959, she had three boys who grew up in the Howick area.

These days she’s in and out of the village.

“I still come in every Monday and look after the textiles and we enjoy that,” she said.

The textile collection, which includes wedding gowns, nighties, children’s wear, Christening gowns, pillow slips and doilies, are catalogued and kept in tissue paper and acid-free boxes. There are more than 227 garments and there is a display every month.
She still volunteers for gardening and live days.

Meanwhile, another long-time committee member also retired at the AGM. Tim English was treasurer for 16 years. He was appointed by President Doug White in 2002 and has helped steer the ship with his oversight of the finance and accounts but has also made a substantial contribution to governance of the society by his contribution at the board table.

Both were commended at the AGM.