Lawrence township in Autumn
(c) Graham Wallace
Lawrence has many groups which residents are passionately involved in supporting a wide variety of charities, interests and events. Here is a short selection:
Weatherstons Brewery and Daffodils Trust
A newly developed trust has been created which will focus on care and maintenance of the 25 acres of rare and heritage daffodils at the Weatherston's heritage site. The Trust’s aim is to once again allow public access during Spring so visitors can appreciate the colourful display of many thousands of daffodils in full bloom and the beautiful old ruins of the brewery and associated buildings.
In recent years the Lawrence Lions Club has raised between $80,000 and $130,000 each year which has been distributed mainly to local organisations with some funds going to national and international groups.
The Club has paid a major part in providing community assets over its 44 years existence with significant donations being given to the Otago Rescue Helicopter Trust, the newly opened “Splash Out” Aquatic Centre, Clutha Gold Trail and Otago Community Hospice to name a few.
The Club organises very successful fundraising events throughout the year requiring huge time and commitment from its membership of 40 keen volunteers.
New Zealand Century Farm and Station Awards
The New Zealand Century Farm and Station Awards is now in its 14th year and over 500 families from throughout New Zealand have visited Lawrence to attend the awards evening and receive recognition for their families farming the same land for 100 years. It is a very special event with prime ministers and other senior dignitaries presenting the awards over the years. A very worthwhile record of earlier farming families in New Zealand is being built up and arrangements are in hand to display the material in an historic cottage that is been relocated to the main Street of Lawrence. See their website for further information.
The Lawrence Chinese Camp Charitable Trust
A charitable trust owns the site that housed up to 500 Chinese just outside of Lawrence in the early gold mining days. Archaeologists have surveyed the site in recent years and it is now ready for further development. The site creates a lot of interest and considerable voluntary work has gone into working on ways to develop the area for tourism. See their website for further information.
The Lawrence Heritage and Cultural Charitable Trust
The Lawrence Heritage and Cultural Charitable Trust was formed 12 years ago to protect and preserve some of the town's heritage buildings.
The trust currently owns the former Methodist Church which is slowly being repaired and rented to a local antique dealer. Another project is the historic cottage that has been relocated to the main street and will soon be refurbished and used as a base and office for the Century Farm Awards.
The Trust's most recent projects are restoring the original old courthouse built in 1875 which is a Category One historic building, and converting the old swimming pool arched structure into a decorative green space.
The Tuapeka Vintage Club
This club has been working for some years now to develop a very worthwhile display of old machinery and cars and artefacts including a very good display of old radios and TVs. The club has a strong and enthusiastic membership which is working to extend their buildings for further displays.
Tuapeka Goldfields Museum
The Lawrence Museum has been gathering material now for over 40 years and has built up an interesting display depicting the town’s goldmining history. The Museum is currently building up a very good photographic gallery.
Lawrence Gymkhana Club
Est. in 1941, Lawrence Gymkhana Club is a local charitable group who organise the annual Lawrence Horse Trek and Gymkhana Day. They also manage the Lawrence Gymkhana Grounds (Wetherstons Rd, Lawrence, NZ) - a great facility for recreation and outdoor events.
Tuapeka Community Health Company
Lawrence Rural Health Centre is operated by the Tuapeka Community Health Company Ltd and governed by a Board of volunteer Directors. The service provides rest home care level care for up to five residents and medical care in two short-stay beds.