Finegand, New Zealand

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Finegand is a locality in the South Otago region of New Zealand's South Island. [1]

South Otago lies in the south east of the South Island of New Zealand. As the name suggests, it forms the southernmost part of the geographical region of Otago.

South Island Southernmost of the two main islands in New Zealand

The South Island, also officially named Te Waipounamu, is the larger of the two major islands of New Zealand in surface area; the other being the smaller but more populous North Island. It is bordered to the north by Cook Strait, to the west by the Tasman Sea, and to the south and east by the Pacific Ocean. The South Island covers 150,437 square kilometres (58,084 sq mi), making it the world's 12th-largest island. It has a temperate climate.


Named after Finegand, in Scotland, by John Shaw. John Shaw arrived in New Zealand in 1852, with his sister Margaret, from Finegand which is near Glenshee in Perthshire, Scotland. He took up land on the south bank of the Clutha River, and named his farm "Finegand".

Finegand village in United Kingdom

Finegand is a farming hamlet located in eastern Perth and Kinross, Scotland and also refers historically to the portion of lands surrounding the hamlet. Finegand is located in Glen Shee and encompasses the lands east of the Shee Water adjacent to a burn which joins it about 4 miles below the Spittal and about 18 miles north of Blairgowrie.

Scotland Country in Europe, part of the United Kingdom

Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. Sharing a border with England to the southeast, Scotland is otherwise surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, by the North Sea to the northeast and by the Irish Sea to the south. In addition to the mainland, situated on the northern third of the island of Great Britain, Scotland has over 790 islands, including the Northern Isles and the Hebrides.

Finegand is situated on the Clutha River south of Balclutha. Other nearby settlements include Otanomomo and Waitepeka to the south and Kakapuaka to the northwest.

Clutha River river in New Zealand

The Clutha River / Mata-Au is the second longest river in New Zealand and the longest in the South Island. It flows south-southeast 338 kilometres (210 mi) through Central and South Otago from Lake Wanaka in the Southern Alps to the Pacific Ocean, 75 kilometres (47 mi) south west of Dunedin. It is the highest volume river in New Zealand, and the swiftest, with a catchment of 21,960 square kilometres (8,480 sq mi), discharging a mean flow of 614 cubic metres per second (21,700 cu ft/s). The Clutha River is known for its scenery, gold-rush history, and swift turquoise waters. A river conservation group, the Clutha Mata-Au River Parkway Group, is working to establish a regional river parkway, with a trail, along the entire river corridor. The name of the river was changed to a dual name by the Ngai Tahu Claims Settlement Act 1998.

Balclutha, New Zealand Town in Otago, New Zealand

Balclutha is a town in Otago, lying towards the end of the Clutha River, on the east coast of the South Island of New Zealand. It is about halfway between Dunedin and Invercargill on the Main South Line railway, State Highway 1 and the Southern Scenic Route. Balclutha has a population of 3,990, and is the largest town in South Otago.

Otanomomo human settlement in New Zealand

Otanomomo is a locality in the South Otago region of New Zealand's South Island. It is situated on the banks of the Clutha River, roughly 6 km south of Balclutha. Nearby settlements include Finegand to the north, Paretai, Puerua, and Romahapa to the south, and Waitepeka to the west.


Finegand is located in a rural area and thus the economic emphasis is on agriculture. A major freezing works operated by Silver Fern Farms is located in Finegand. A multimillion-dollar upgrade of the facility was undertaken in 2007. [2]

Agriculture Cultivation of plants and animals to provide useful products

Agriculture is the science and art of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentary human civilization, whereby farming of domesticated species created food surpluses that enabled people to live in cities. The history of agriculture began thousands of years ago. After gathering wild grains beginning at least 105,000 years ago, nascent farmers began to plant them around 11,500 years ago. Pigs, sheep and cattle were domesticated over 10,000 years ago. Plants were independently cultivated in at least 11 regions of the world. Industrial agriculture based on large-scale monoculture in the twentieth century came to dominate agricultural output, though about 2 billion people still depended on subsistence agriculture into the twenty-first.

Slaughterhouse facility where animals are killed for consumption as food products

A slaughterhouse or abattoir is a facility where animals are slaughtered, most often to provide food for humans. Slaughterhouses supply meat, which then becomes the responsibility of a packaging facility.

Silver Fern Farms

Silver Fern Farms Limited is a New Zealand multinational meat company. It is owned in equal partnership by Silver Fern Farms Co-op Ltd, a cooperative of 16,000 New Zealand sheep, cattle and deer farmers and Shanghai Maling Aquarius Ltd. The company is New Zealand’s largest livestock processing and marketing company. It has investments in manufacturing, meat processing, transport of live stock, export logistics and meat marketing, with associated companies including, New Zealand and Australian Lamb Company Limited, The Lamb Co-Operative, Inc, Robotic Technologies Limited, Livestock Logistics Nationwide Limited. Kotahi Logistics LP, Ovine Automation Limited, FarmIQ Systems Ltd, Primary Collaboration NZ Ltd and the Red Meat Profit Partnership.


Finegand is situated on the Southern Scenic Route road, which meets State Highway 1 just to the north in Balclutha.

Southern Scenic Route road in New Zealand

The Southern Scenic Route is a tourist highway in New Zealand linking Queenstown, Fiordland, Te Anau and the iconic Milford Road to Dunedin via, Riverton, Invercargill and The Catlins. An Australian travel magazine labelled it "one of the world's great undiscovered drives" in 2008.

New Zealand State Highway 1 road in New Zealand

State Highway 1 is the longest and most significant road in the New Zealand road network, running the length of both main islands. It appears on road maps as SH 1 and on road signs as a white number 1 on a red shield, but it has the official designations SH 1N in the North Island, SH 1S in the South Island.

On 15 December 1885, the first section of the Catlins River Branch railway opened through Finegand. This branch line ultimately terminated in Tahakopa, with the Finegand station 3.6 km from the junction with the Main South Line in Balclutha. [3] At its peak in the first half of the 20th century, up to sixteen trains per week would pass through Finegand, primarily mixed trains. However, the line's profitability declined after World War II and it closed beyond Finegand on 27 February 1971. The first 4.05 km remain in operation as an industrial siding to serve the Silver Firm Farms freezing works and it is shunted as required by passing trains on the Main South Line. [4]

The Catlins River Branch was a branch line railway that formed part of New Zealand's national rail network. It ran through the Catlins region in southwestern Otago and was built in sections between 1879 and 1915. It closed in 1971 except for the first four kilometres, which remain open as the Finegand Branch, formerly named the Finegand Industrial Siding. Along the line was the Hunts Road tunnel, the southernmost tunnel in New Zealand.

Branch line Minor railway line

A branch line is a secondary railway line which branches off a more important through route, usually a main line. A very short branch line may be called a spur line. David Blyth Hanna, the first president of the Canadian National Railway, said that although most branch lines cannot pay for themselves, they are essential to make main lines pay.

Tahakopa human settlement in New Zealand

Tahakopa is a small settlement in The Catlins, an area of the southern South Island of New Zealand. It is located 25 kilometres northeast of Waikawa on the Tahakopa River. On 17 February 1915, Tahakopa became the terminus of the Catlins River Branch railway and retained this status until the branch line was closed on 27 February 1971. From the line's opening until 12 August 1956, a railway locomotive depot was based in the village. The old station building and goods shed still stand today.

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Owaka human settlement

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  1. "Place name detail: Finegand". New Zealand Gazetteer. Land Information New Zealand . Retrieved 27 November 2007.
  2. Neal Wallace, "Meat Workers Remain Confident", Otago Daily Times (31 October 2007).
  3. New Zealand Railway and Tramway Atlas, fourth edition, edited by John Yonge (Essex: Quail Map Company, 1993), 28.
  4. David Leitch and Brian Scott, Exploring New Zealand's Ghost Railways, revised edition (Wellington: Grantham House, 1998 [1995]), 103-4.

Coordinates: 46°16′S169°44′E / 46.267°S 169.733°E / -46.267; 169.733