The origins of ‘Clachanburn’ go back to 1920, when Puketoi Station was sub-divided for ballot farms for ex-servicemen. Run 624 was drawn by Charles and Dorothy Aitchison who named it ‘Clachanburn’, Gaelic for Stoney Creek, which flows through the farm.
Lawrence (Laurie) Falconer worked on ‘Clachanburn’ as a young farm cadet and when he returned from service in World War 2 Charlie Aitchison persuaded him to buy a nearby farm, which he did with the help of a Rehabilitation Loan . He called the farm ‘Puketiri’, and he and his wife Marjorie (nee Throp) farmed there from 1944-59. The Falconer’s friendship with the Aitchisons was a firm one, as was evident when Marj and Laurie named their first son Charles, after Charlie Aitchison.
Laurie and Marj purchased ‘Clachanburn’ from Mrs Aitchison in 1959. Laurie established a nationally recognised Hereford Stud and Merino and half-breeds were dry land farmed.
Charles and Jane (nee Roberts) were married in 1971, eventually taking over the farm in 1977 when his parents retired to Patearoa. In the 1980’s much development took place: the irrigation scheme began construction, the hill development was significant, and Charles began farming Elk deer. The result of irrigation has seen Clachanburn stock changed from Sheep and Beef, to Deer and Beef.
Their children, Susan and John, grew up at ‘Clachanburn’. All the family have loved living on the farm - the men with their animals, farming challenges, fishing and shooting; Susan with her ponies; Jane with her much loved garden; and now John, the third generation Falconer to be farming at ‘Clachanburn’, with his wife Mary and children Lucy and Charlie.
Sadly, Jane's husband Charles passed away in 2005.