YEAR: 1953


The death has occurred of Mr Frank E Graham, an original member of the Christchurch Stock Exchange and its chairman for nearly 40 years. He was 78. He was the only member of the original exchange still operating. When the exchange had its first call on April 23, 1900, the first reported sale was made by Mr Graham, and this began an association with the exchange that continued for 53 years.

He was appointed chairman of the exchange in 1910 and remained in office until 1923 and was again chairman from 1939 to 1946. Mr Graham also took a leading part in the formation of the Stock Exchange of NZ and was a past president of that body.

Mr Graham's interest in sport was widespread, and he took an active part in the administration of trotting, racing, golf and boxing in Christchurch. For many years he raced trotters in partnership with the late Mr J C Clarkson and later on his own account. His horses were trained by W J Doyle, and he enjoyed considerable success with a number of them, the best known being Lament, a champion and winner of several free-for-alls.

Mr Graham gave long service to the NZ Metropolitan Trotting Club which he joined in 1908. For many years he was a member of the committee and a steward, and he was later appointed treasurer. He was vice-president from 1935 to 1940, and in that year he was elected a life member. He was also a life-member of the Canterbury Jockey Club.

Credit: NZ Trotting Calendar 28Oct53


The first Treasurer of the NZ Metropolitan Trotting Club was Mr L Wilson who served from 1899 to 1906. Prior to this he had been Treasurer of the Lancaster Park Amateur Trotting Club from 1894 until 1899 and continued as Treasurer as the new Club. In July 1903 the Chairman ruled that under the rules of the Club its Treasurer did not have a seat on the Committee so in August of that year Mr Wilson declined to sign the Club’s cheques. He was asked to explain his reasons for his refusal and advised that in the meantime other arrangements for signing had been made. It was agreed that Mr Wilson should counter-sign the cheques as Treasurer and at the AGM in July 1904 steps were taken to amend the Rules to include the Honorary Treasurer as a member of the Committee and then Mr Wilson was re-elected Treasurer at the Annual Meeting and attended the first Committee meeting following his election.

Mr Wilson was followed by Mr T Marr who served for only two years, dying while in office. The third Treasurer was Mr G B Ritchie who served until 1909 when he was elected Vice-President in September of that year resulting in a vacancy for the Treasurership which was filled by Mr J Harris until 1911.

Following the death of Mr Harris in office, Mr G Treleaven was appointed and served for eight years. He was followed in 1919 by Mr J S Williams who held office until 1921. Mr Williams had a long association with Trotting being an original Member of the Canterbury Trotting Club which was established in 1887. He was one of the few at the first meeting held to found the NZ Trotting Association in 1888 and was President of that body in 1891 when the Government recognized the Association by authorizing it to approve all programmes before Totalisator Licences were granted to Clubs.

Mr F E Graham was the next Treasurer and held office until August 1935 when he was appointed Vice-President on the death of Mr C M Ollivier.

Mr G W C Smithson was then appointed to fill the vacancy caused through Mr Graham’s elevation and he continued as Treasurer for ten years, retiring in 1945. As well as being Treasurer, Mr Smithson was the Club’s Solicitor for many years.

Following his term as President of the Club, Mr A L Matson was elected Honorary Treasurer, an office he held until 1952 when Mr C S Thomas, the Immediate Past President of the Club was elected. Mr Thomas held the office of Treasurer until 1970 when he resigned in favour of Mr D E Dalzell. Up until 1981, Mr Thomas was the longest serving Treasurer in the history of the Club having acted for 18 years.

Before being Treasurer, Mr D E Dalzell was associated with the “Met” for many years being an assistant to Mr S P Godfrey who was Gate Supervisor and Financial Advisor to the Club. Following the death of Mr S P Godfrey, Mr Dalzell and his partners continued as Gate Supervisors until their resignations in 1963. Mr Dalzell was elected a Member of the Club soon after and was subsequently appointed Honorary Treasurer in 1970 an office he held until his resignation in 1983. Mr A R Corcoran who was elected to the Committee in 1977 succeeded Mr Dalzell.

Credit: NZMTC: Historical Notes compiled by D C Parker



1894-99 L Wilson (Lancaster Park Amateur Trotting Club)

1899-1906 L Wilson

1906-08 T Marr

1908-09 G B Ritchie

1909-11 J Harris

1911-19 G Treleaven

1919-21 J S Williams

1921-35 F E Graham

1935-45 G W C Smithson

1945-52 A L Matson

1952-70 C S Thomas

1970-83 D E Dalzell

1983-98 À R Corcoran

1998 Amalgamated with CPTC & NBHRC to form a new Club

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