Smedley Station’s new education hub built by cadets with timber grown on farm

Cadets at Smedley Station and Cadet Training Farm in Tikokino, Central Hawke’s Bay are ticking off big projects one new build at a time.

The students and resident licensed builder Mark Winlove finished building the new education hub in 2023 and are now building a six-stand wool shed and covered yards on Smedley’s Farm at Parks Peak.

Situated 40km west of Waipukurau, the sheep, cattle, bull-beef and deer training farm had its first intake of cadets in 1931 and accepts 13 students each year for a two-year cadetship on the four-block operation.

The education facility was constructed using a mixture of pine, tōtara and redwood grown and milled on the property and features a classroom and boardroom, visitor accommodation, and a semi-commercial kitchen and office spaces.

Rob Evans, the manager for nine years and a former Smedley cadet, said the connection to the build was something they encouraged with the students and they were involved with the entire “full-circle” process.

“They cut the trees down, milled them, built it and replanted the block.”

Evans said the pine used was 25-26 years old, however, didn’t know the age of the redwood and tōtara trees, but could tell from the size they were a decent age.

The building hadn’t had its official opening but had already been used by Smedley for its latest open day in June, which had around 350 visitors.

The new woolshed and covered yards currently under construction would replace the Parks Peak woolshed that burnt down in December 2022.

“We’d hope that the woolshed and yards would be operational by the end of winter, so we can do the next main shear in that shed,” Evans said.


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First published by Hawke’s Bay Today. Click here to read the full article.