Despite generations of history and a road named after their family, one couple near Wellsford are happy to settle quickly to make way for the new motorway.
Lester and Raewynne Borrows say they were planning to sell their one-hectare rural property in the next 10 years. They describe it as a postage stamp in the middle of the motorway corridor that bypasses central Wellsford, about three kilometres away.
It is one of two remaining titles out of the original 80 hectare farm his grandfather, Robert Borrows, started in the 1930s. After that, his father Ken worked it into a thriving dairy farm and, after his retirement, other family members continued the farm and a lime business.
Lester and Raewynne live in the family home he grew up in, built by his grandfather and father in the 1950s. Both of Lester’s parents passed away in the home.
After spending their lives in Wellsford, the couple have recently come back to the property and have been landscaping it over summer.
“We do love it here. There is so much history and a fantastic view that will be difficult to replace,” Lester says.
While they support the need for the motorway and understand people will be affected, the news means there is no longer any point working on the property, and they would like to settle sooner rather than later.
“We are demotivated from doing anything to the property now. It’s brought our plans forward quite considerably,” the couple says.
They want to find a new property and project they can get their teeth into.
“Now we’ve had this thrust upon us at our age, we need to be able to plan ahead for our next stage of life,” Raewynne says.
They have nominated themselves for early settlement and say NZTA has been easy to deal with, which has helped them make a quick decision.