School Road, North Taieri

  • Duddingston.
    Copyright: NZ Historic Places Trust.

List Entry Information

List Entry Status Listed List Entry Type Historic Place Category 1 Public Access Private/No Public Access
List Number 332 Date Entered 7th April 1983


City/District Council

Dunedin City


Otago Region

Legal description

Pt Secs 7-9 Blk 10 East Taieri SD


Duddingston, a two-storey brick cottage was constructed for David Oughton (1832-1869), one of the first Pakeha to settle on the Taieri Plains. Initially Oughton built a cottage, Janefield, at North Taieri. His first wife Jane died in 1860 and two years later Oughton returned to Scotland and remarried. He returned to Otago in 1864 with his new wife Wilhelmina Jane Hunter (?1833-1899) and settled again on the Taieri, leaving 'Janefield' (also registered by the New Zealand Historic Places Trust Pouhere Taonga) to his oldest son James (?-1902).

Oughton already owned two pieces of land which he had purchased along North Taieri School Road in 1861. The adjacent piece of land became his under a crown grant of 1865 and he settled here and built a house on his return to New Zealand. The house Oughton established for his family, known by him as 'Boghead', is a two-storey 'L'-plan cottage with a bay on the left-hand side and a bay window on the ground floor. A small verandah runs along the front of the house. There is a lean-to at the rear and dormer windows light the upper storey. The decorated barge boards topped with finials add a decorative touch. The 70,000-80,000 bricks used to build the house were purchased from neighbouring Salisbury estate, where Donald Reid (1833-1919) had fired them in his own kiln and sold them to Oughton. The exterior walls have been coated with a concrete wash to protect the bricks and consequently the original brickwork is now only visible under the verandah.

Four years after building 'Boghead', Oughton died. His widow returned to Scotland with her two children and two stepchildren from Oughton's earlier marriage. When the children's education was complete the family returned to Otago in 1885, and son William Oughton farmed the property until 1900 when the family moved to Southland. The property was sold to Robert Smellie (?-1901) in 1900. Smellie, a local farmer, had owned the section next door in partnership with Samuel Young, since 1874. He changed the name of the property to Duddingston, after Duddingston Loch near Edinburgh. Smellie died soon after his purchase, in 1901, and one of his descendants, Arthur Smellie, eventually moved into the cottage with his new wife in 1909. The property was still owned by descendants of the Smellies until the 1980s. While various internal alterations have taken place over the years to bring the house into line with modern expectations, the exterior remains intact.

Duddingston is a fine example of a typical cottage built by many early Pakeha settlers. Its exterior has remained unchanged and it has remained in the same family for over 80 years. Duddingston is associated with one of the earliest Pakeha settlers on the Taieri Plains, David Oughton.


Additional informationopen/close

Construction Dates

Original Construction
1865 -

Completion Date

3rd June 2003

Report Written By

Melanie Lovell-Smith

Information Sources

Lemon, 1970

Daphne Lemon, Taieri Buildings: with drawings by Audrey Bascand, Dunedin, 1970

Other Information

Please note that entry on the New Zealand Heritage List/Rarangi Korero identifies only the heritage values of the property concerned, and should not be construed as advice on the state of the property, or as a comment of its soundness or safety, including in regard to earthquake risk, safety in the event of fire, or insanitary conditions.