The first Europeans who arrived on the Lady Jocelyn and settled on the Te Puke Block in 1881, included Scots and more arrived as land became available for settlement on the Pongakawa Block in 1890, the Paengaroa Block in 1894 and at Otamarakau in 1919.
The Te Puke Scottish Society was formed in 1933 and since then it has held monthly dances in the local halls. The Te Puke District Highland Pipe Band was first formed in 1951 and despite short periods of recess the Pipe Band was reformed in 1998. It has recently purchased 25 kilts of the Scottish National Tartan design. The band has been renowned for providing a stirring atmosphere at various community events and highland Dancing competitions have been regular events at the Te Puke Agriculture and Pastoral Association Annual Show. At social gatherings organised by Scottish Clans, the piping in of the Haggis, and the playing of the pipes is another example of the retention of some old and cherished traditions.
Well known Scottish families who are in the district include the late Mr Jock Reid, whose birthplace was the Shetland Islands and developed land at Pukehina He played a prominent role in the development of the Te Puke and Tauranga Districts as Chairman of the Tauranga Harbour Board and the Tauranga County Council during the 1950’s. In 1892 MacDougal’s settled on the land from what is now known as MacDougail’s Hill to the coast. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries many of the Cameron clan immigrated to New Zealand including Mathew Cameron who arrived in the Bay of Plenty from Fife in Scotland in 1924, aged 18 years. He worked as a farm cadet on sheep and dairy farms and in 1930 purchased a dairy farm at Otamarakau. Farming activities now include dairying, sheep and cattle, orcharding and quarrying.
In 1859 John and Catherine McLeod departed from Scotland for New Zealand on the Cresswell, arriving in Lyttelton on 12 September 1859. Their son William McLeod travelled north to settle in Papamoa in 1910 farming approx 1200 acres. Descendents of his family still reside in the Te Puke area with several of his grandsons still farming in Papamoa.
In 1858 John McNaughton left Scotland on the Three Bells arriving in Port Chalmers, Dunedin, 18th July and in 1878 he moved to Tauranga. They had 10 children. John bought 1,000 acres at Papamoa; all in swamp and his 6th son Colin bought two of the adjoining farms and settled there with his wife and family calling the farm Glenmore. The land is crowned by the paramount Pa named Karangaumu, providing 360º views from its 224 metre elevation above sea level. To the west is Mauao (Mt Maunganui) and Te Awanui (Tauranga Harbour). To the southeast is Te Puke area with Mt Edgcumbe visible to the southeast. Also Visible are Tuhua (Mayor Island) and Motiti Island and the still active volcano Whakaari (White Island). The farm is now the Cultural Heritage and Regional Park. It was opened to the public on the 31st July 2004 for the recreational use through the years to embrace its uniqueness.
Designed and created by: Peter Crammond
Contributed by: Harold Cameron and Renee McLeod