Joan Sutherland

1931 - 2007

Joan was born in Napier and grew up in Otewa on a dairy farm, attending Otorohanga High at a time when the school bus only came two miles out of town, and Joan and brother Bob had to cycle four miles, twice a day on a winding loose metal road, rain, hail or shine.  Joan worked in Napier for several years, and then in Motueka and Christchurch with sister Mary.  Parental ill health called her back to the farm where she settled in, and it often fell to her to bring up the runt of litters.  One great success was a black lamb who got left behind after a flock had been driven to market.  He became a pet called Nugget and when he needed shearing, Joan started a life-time love of spinning and knitting and experimented with natural dyes and textures.

When Joan moved to Papamoa in 1981, as well as tending a large flower and vegetable garden and dealing with the produce of the orchard, she joined the local Spinning Club  expanding her knowledge and attaining her WoolMark Certificate with a fine wool complete baby layette.  After that there were many handsome sweaters, jackets and jumpers for family and friends.

Joan Sutherland’s fund is directed toward learning for young women, and for organisations that benefit the deaf, as she herself became deaf in one ear.