A detachment of the 65th Regiment was sent from Auckland in response to settlers' concerns about trouble between two local Maori chiefs. Arriving in Napier in February 1858, the troops came ashore at Onepoto Gully. Main Street now marks the route taken by the men as they made their way up Napier Hill.
A temporary camp was established until barracks were built to the north of the Botanical Gardens. The regiment located a source of fresh water at the foot of the gardens and sank two wells.
Water and other supplies were hauled up to the barracks via the Military Track, which runs between the Botanical Gardens and the Old Napier Cemetery.
Regimental laundry and other washing were done in the vicinity of the wells, and this spot was dubbed "Soapsuds Gully".
The two wells were closed later in the 19th century during a typhoid epidemic. In 1964, members of the Hawke's Bay and East Coast Arts Society and the Superintendent of Parks located the site of one of the wells. The original wooden lining of the well shaft had rotted away. In January 1965, a cosmetic well head of limestone rock was erected to preserve this historic landmark.
Botanical Gardens, Napier Hill
Disclaimers and Copyright
While every endeavour has been taken by the Napier City Council to ensure that the information on this website is accurate and up to date, Napier City Council shall not be liable for any loss suffered through the use, directly or indirectly, of information on this website. Information contained has been assembled in good faith. Some of the information available in this site is from the New Zealand Public domain and supplied by relevant government agencies. Napier City Council cannot accept any liability for its accuracy or content. Portions of the information and material on this site, including data, pages, documents, online graphics and images are protected by copyright, unless specifically notified to the contrary. Externally sourced information or material is copyright to the respective provider.
© Napier City Council - www.napier.govt.nz / +64 6 835 7579 / firstname.lastname@example.org