The first fifty years in the history of a local Church is a story of faith and persistence. Those who began Methodism's work for Christ in Northland stepped out in faith that God would bless their efforts in the new suburb. As the suburb developed, so Methodism grew, and today there is a beautiful building, set in a fine position, with a worthy and active congregation. It has not been an easy growth--from time to time the faithful members were faced with difficulties and periods of declension. However, the light never went out. The people called Methodists in Northland have received a goodly heritage and are building upon the work of the past. In the following pages you will read an interesting and encouraging story. May God enable the present congregation as they enter the second fifty years to extend His Kingdom in this community.
The Church is most grateful to Mr J. Halket Millar, who prepared this brochure and arranged its publication.
R. GRAHAM BELL
The name "Taita" means a piece of wood lodged in the bed of a river, a snag, and is pronounced correctly with the second "a" lengthened, hence Tytar, not Tyta, with
a - short second syllable. This correct pronunciation would account for the pakeha mis-spelling and mis-pronounciation Taitai, still so named by many f the older folk.
After the original Hutt River settlement of Britannia had dispersed, and the people settled at Thorndon (Pipitea Point), Aglionby and Richmond, the task of opening up the hinterland was undertaken in earnest. The road reached as far as Taita in 1843, Stokes Valley in December 1843, Upper Flutt in August 1844, and the Wairarapa in 1847. Native troubles developed in the district, there being a Taita Stockade near Mr. Thomas Mason's original house, and near what was then the southern boundary of Taita, Boulcott's Farm Stockade, where the famous battle took place in 1846. Taita then was merely a clearing in the bush some few miles from Hutt. In 1845 an Anglican church was built there, a church which is still in use to-day.