After 43 years in the banking industry Peter Dalziel now lives off the land at Stratford.
The new TSB Community Trustee and his wife Marg own Dolly’s Milk, which provides raw, chemical-free milk that people can buy from an on-site dispenser.
Their 17 to 20 cows are milked every morning seven days a week, all year round. They also calve throughout the year. “We do farm by organic principles but within reason,” Peter says.
Since moving to central Taranaki, he has become strongly involved in the community. He’s the chairman of the Stratford Business Association, a new Stratford District Councillor and a trustee of Tutaki Youth Inc, a not-for-profit organisation focused on the wellbeing of young people in the area.
“It has specific focus on kids including those who are in situations of domestic violence or subjected to bullying.”
Tutaki Youth has four or five social workers who work with the police and teachers to identify young people who may have the potential to go off the rails or need support.
Being on this trust has been a big eye-opener for Peter. None of his family or his friends have ever needed this type of service and he turned a blind eye to it. “If it’s not in your face it’s not a problem. It’s been quite enlightening.”
When he saw the advert seeking trustees for the TSB Community Trust, he thought he may have something to offer. The trust was keen on someone with an investment banking background.
Although that wasn’t his area of expertise, Peter does have a solid background in banking. He has worked for the Bank of NSW/Westpac, Countrywide Bank/National Bank and HSBC in NZ & Australia.
While working in the banks, he also studied, gaining an MBA out of Auckland University and completing a post-graduate diploma in banking and business studies.
After 20 years in Auckland and 10 in Sydney, Peter and Marg began hankering for their rural roots. She grew up on a farm at Ohingaiti, 55km north-east of Bulls, and Peter is from Turakina, near Whanganui, where his dad was a blacksmith.
“Way back when Marg and I were in our 40s, we said ‘when we give up this city life, we want a bit of land’.”
The parents of two adult sons, say when they turned 60 and the grandchildren started arriving they decided it was time to “come home”.
They began dry grazing on their land on Warwick Rd, but inspired by a raw milk vending machine business at Takaka in Golden Bay, he and friends decided to open Dolly’s milk. Their mates have their own operation at Bell Block.
Focused fully on community, Peter is now pleased to be on the TSB Community Trust.
“It gives me a broad perspective of Taranaki as opposed to Stratford district. I thought it would be a nice opportunity to meet like-minded people who are involved in other organisations and business – and that’s proven to be the case,” he says.
“What I want to see for Taranaki is ongoing growth of communities, industries, employment opportunities that will see it as a desirable area in New Zealand for people to live and work.”