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  Highwic Garden

Address40 Gillies Avenue Epsom, Highwic is a short walk up Mortimer Pass from bus stops outside the 227 shopping complex in Newmarket and a ten minute walk from the Newmarket train Station. Take a Link Bus from the CBD, or a train from Britomart .Highwic has two entrances. The recommended vehicle entry is from Mortimer Pass which runs one way from Gillies Ave down to Broadway, Newmarket. The Gillies Ave entrance is directly opposite the Gillies Ave motorway off ramp.
RegionAuckland - Central
Privately owned or publicPublic
Phone64 9 524 5729
Fax64 9 524 5595
Contact PersonCheryl Laurie
Hours10.30 a.m. -4.30 p.m. Wednesday to Sunday (except Christmas Day & Good Friday)
Garden SizeSet in 1.2 hectares of picturesque gardens and grounds, Highwic is regarded as one of the finest Carpenter Gothic houses in New Zealand. Allow 1 hour for the house and grounds.
PriceEntry to the garden is free. House entry is $8.50 per adult, children, NZHPT , National Trust Britain and Australia members are free.
Brochure Available?Yes
ParkingOff street parking for buses coaches and cars.
Food AvailableMorning or afternoon tea can be provided for a group visit for an extra charge of $5.00. This includes tea/coffee and a pikelet with with jam and cream.
Cafe/Restaurant available?No
SeatingSome garden seats.
Wheelchair AccessWheelchair access is available
Dogs AllowedYes on a leash.
Children AllowedYes
AccommodationOut of town guests can find accommodation in a choice of motels an easy walking distance away.
WeddingsIn the grounds are a number of locations for weddings, including the Drawing Room, the Billiard Room, and the Tennis Lawn.
Plant/Other SalesNo
Guided ToursBy arrangement.
Function center?Yes
Other FacilitiesThey were the treasured friends of the little girls and boys who lived at Highwic and are still well loved by those who visit the propertes today.

Highwic, former home of the Buckland family, holds a significant collection of such toys and games and recently benefited from the donation of a number of dolls which had belonged to Ruth Waller (née Buckland, 1880-1959).

Central but private, it is a haven in the heart of Newmarket, Auckland's premier shopping precinct.

The ballroom provides the perfect setting for pre-dinner drinks, and the Billiards House will seat 60 for dinner. Both rooms also work well as meeting or seminar rooms.

Highwic is suitable for a wide range of functions including corporate dinners,and cocktail parties.

Highwic works with a group of four caterers who can provide quality service within the constraints of an historic building.


The Garden

Trees around Highwic are almost as old as the house, including old, once fashionable, pines under planted with clivias. Norfolk pines dominate the croquet lawn and front entrance Mature camellias line a pathway down the drive, with ivy and South African bulbs underneath.

The original Victorian garden is still evident as the house and grounds remained in the Buckland family until 1978. An old orchard borders Gillies Ave and Echium pinana stand above the volcanic outcrop forming the North -West corner of the property. Looking from here, the sight of modern Newmarket contrasts completely with the uncluttered view to Rangitoto Island that existed in Alfred Buckland's time.

Most of Highwic is hidden from public view by mature trees and high hedges. A formal element remains in a hedged , circular garden with narrow curving pathways. Other, formally edged beds contain old fashioned perennials and annuals. Native species include ferns, Nikau , cabbage tree and a large Totara on the edge of the lawn .

A fern house features many further varieties of indigenous ferns. A rock walkway leads past a bank of Agapanthus, once a sophisticated rockery, past belladonna lilies to the driveway by the original stables.

The Gardener

Alfred Buckland and Eliza Wallen married in England and emigrated to New Zealand in 1850 on the sailing ship "Sir Edward Paget". They first settled in South Auckland where they became well established quite quickly by buying and selling land. Twelve years later they purchased 5 acres (2 ha), in Eliza's name and moved closer to Auckland to the newly emerging area of Epsom. They named their property Highwic. In 1978 the New Zealand Historic Places Trust and the Auckland City Council purchased Highwic. Furnished as it might have been in Alfred Buckland's time, Highwic offers an insight into the daily life and leisure activities of a large and wealthy colonial family.
Click on any image below to enlarge
One of New Zealand’s finest timber Gothic houses, Highwic was begun in 1862 by Alfred Buckland, one of Auckland’s most substantial land owners, and his wife Eliza. It was extended in 1873 in the style of the original, which had been copied from American A.J Downings patternbook ‘The Architecture of Country Houses’.
Highwic was home to Buckland’s 21 children and remained in the family until sold in 1978. Furnished with antiques, there is much to interest and charm visitors of all ages, and in addition, the hectare of lawns and fine gardens provide a haven from the hustle and bustle of nearby Newmarket.
The original Victorian garden is still evident as the house and grounds remained in the Buckland family until 1978.
Highwic offers a unique insight into the life of the well-to-do Buckland family. Highwic's authenticity provides the perfect opportunity for garden groups to learn about how people lived in Auckland in the late 1800s.
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