Born in the North Island of New Zealand Lyn Hope's family moved to the South Island in pursuit of farming when she was a toddler. She has many fond memories of growing up on Leefield, a sheep and beef farm in the Waihopai Valley. Lyn describes a wonderful country up bringing, with freedom to explore the countryside, as well as being captivated by the goings on of farm life. Growing up in the 40’s the farm house was always filled with classical music run off an old gramophone. Lyn and her siblings had an idyllic childhood, riding ponies, creating tree huts, and hatching birds from their eggs.
Due to Tuberculosis Lyn's father, Tiny Moore, was not able to go to war so the family spent the wartime on farms. Tiny was a handy man and an inventor, he built the family the well known Stone Cottage on Weld St in Blenheim, and was the inventor of TUX dog biscuits, which were made in a small bakers oven revised from his Grandmother's recipe. Having moved into town Lyn attended Marlborough Girls College, excelling at athletics and sports.
At the end of her schooling Lyn went nursing at Wairau Hospital in Blenheim and meet her husband Michael while completing her final exams. For most their engagement, Michael was away mustering. Once married the couple farmed at Ward, before moving to The Teme, a 2500 acre sheep and beef property in partnership with Michael’s parents. Forty five minutes from Blenheim, Lyn remembers no power, and a party line phone, with three small children. Lyn kept busy nursing at the hospital and being fully involved on the farm. Michael was a keen sailor often spending months at a time out at sea, leaving Lyn and the children at home to manage the farm.
In 1974 the homestead at The Teme burnt down and all of the family’s belongings were lost.
"When the house burnt down the farming community around us were amazing. We had people offering us help with housing, furniture, clothing as well as out on the farm with the stock. The camaraderie and support of the rural sector is something that makes it truly special."
During the farming downturn of the late 1970s, Lyn again had to take the helm running the farm, while husband Michael found work off farm truck driving. All throughout their time farming together Lyn continued to work as a nurse, summating over 40 years at Wairau Hospital in Blenheim. The couple continued to farm until the early 1990’s before selling up, and spent many years of their retirement travelling back and forward to the UK looking after animals, livestock and people through various agencies. One she still has special links with is Animal Aunts based in Rogate, England and she still travels yearly to look after animals through the agency.
Lyn still enjoys getting out and about on the farm whenever possible.
"I still love being involved in all aspects of farming and do so through my children and grandchildren, from cooking for the team, to vaccinating and picking up lambs at docking. There is something about being out in the rural setting."
Lyn, you are such an inspiration to the younger generation. You have proven yourself to be so resilient and have supported your family whilst working extremely hard throughout your career. Those that know you are lucky to have you in their lives and we are glad you still have a love for the rural community.