Anthony Petrie arrived in New Zealand in 1900, and changed his name from Petrich into Petrie because his wife’s family didn’t want her to marry a “foreigner”. He named the roads in the locality – Awhiorangi Promenade, Rangimarie, Puketahu, Kitewaho — after much research on his part.
A sawmill was built in 1949 along Awhiorangi Promenade from working parts sourced in the Hokianga area where sons Ian and Harold, together with some others, dismantled the structure, loaded it on a coastal vessel which then arrived in Onehunga to be unloaded. Anthony build the mill, under the supervision of Arthur Moore, principally for the purpose of cutting heads of kauri trees and stumps left after earlier milling operations. The whole level of Awhiorangi Promenade was once called the “Kauri Grove”.
Harold’s house was all kauri, while Ian’s home is mainly rimu in construction. Ian was involved for four years in the milling process then became an earth-moving contractor and finally went into real estate for ten years.
Ian Petrie has been part of Swanson since first coming here as a five year old on holiday. He lived in Parnell and Mt Eden until his three years of war service in Bomber Command. In 1946 the family came to live in a bach at the end of Awhiorangi Promenade.
He has fond memories of the early days of the RSA, particularly at Christmas. It was a tradition for many years that people visited his home for a Christmas morning drink, some of it home-made wine.
Rugged Determination, p148
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