1963, with Kiwi caravanning in it's infancy, Geoff and
Wendy Button were considered by many to be quite mad
to be starting a caravan business. Relocating their
business to Normanby three years later confirmed local
suspicions of idiocy beyond doubt...everybody including
their accountant thought they were "the crazy pair with
a few caravans in a paddock".
saw Normanby as a tiny rural settlement - and it was in
those days. But Geoff and Wendy looked beyond the boxthorn
hedges, the dirt track and the turnip paddock to see a site
full of potential. Situated on State Highway 3 it had high
traffic exposure, with plenty of parking and was not hemmed
in by other businesses. Asking themselves "Why do we see
things differently to everyone else?" they set to and cleared
the site with scythes and mowers, in readiness for the first
caravans. '' The rubbish was piled so high it towered over
the fence" remembers Wendy who, with Geoff, carted 4000
concrete tiles off the property. "It was a hard weekend's
work but by Monday the caravans were on site and White Heather
at Normanby became a reality".
entrepreneurial couple christened their fledgling business
White Heather - a talisman of good luck in Scotland - a
memorable name which Wendy & Geoff dreamed would become
well known around New Zealand and the world. When they unearthed
a whisky bottle bearing the name "White Heather" on the
very site they planned to do business from, it was confirmed:
"we were meant to be here!"
Nearly half a century on, White Heather endures, and the bottle discovered
decades ago still shines - used as a lamp at home.
They had their site, they had caravans and people wanting
to buy them and trade their cars in for them.....but the
council stepped in.
were these people doing selling vehicles from a non-commercial
property? Battles over signage and zoning were waged until,
after extensive lobbying, Wendy and Geoff managed to convince
the bureaucrats that White Heather was an asset to the small
South Taranaki township. "We were improving Normanby and
putting it on the map. Anyway, eventually we were able to
gradually spread out, purchasing two neighbouring houses
and a dairy - over a period of 8 years we had extended over
the whole area of the Southern approach to Normanby."
White Heather is a thriving, vibrant place, laid out like
a park for everyone's enjoyment. We have new and used caravans,
cars, motor homes and campers, plus a large camping division
with a year round expo of tents erected to make it easy
to choose the correct one for each person's individual requirements.
Our stocks of camping, tramping and caravanning equipment
are second to none. For motor home builders, we can supply
any equipment you may need, for caravan owners we carry
stocks of most parts that you would require. Mail order
is a large part of our business.
our vehicles are presented in pristine condition, both new
and used. Everything is serviced in our modern automotive
workshop by certified mechanics. They are then groomed to
as near perfection as we can get them in our groomimg bay,
which includes a sewing shop where we repair awnings and
tents, and manufacture new awnings to order and accessories
such as sunshades, stoneguards, drawbar covers, windbreaks
etc. All tyres are checked and replaced if necessary in
our tyre bay, where they are fitted and balanced. We have
a wide range of trailers of all sizes and types and we are
very proud to represent Australia's leading caravan manufacturer
JAYCO. We enjoy being able to suit individual requirements
for caravan designs.
White Heather is unique in New Zealand. We can offer you
one-stop service second to none. Geoff and Wendy are still
here to serve you with their vast knowledge and experience
gained over the years, together with their son Ross, who
has grown up with the business, and their team of dedicated
invite you to browse our website for some of the various
products we have on offer. Unfortunately we cannot show
you all we do, but please contact us with your queries,
we will endeavour to assist you, and make your leisure pleasure
Wendy, Ross and the White Heather team.