CYCLOPEDIA OF NZ 1906
Nelson, Marlborough and Westland
COLLYNS, Arthur Shuckburgh
Pages 26-27, 34
Mr. Arthur Shuckburgh Collyns J.P.
PRESENT AND PAST MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT:
...In the third Parliament  Mr. A. Saunders replaced Mr. Travers for the Waimea, and
Mr. A. J. Richmond was member for Collingwood, being replaced in 1868 by Mr. A. Collyns.
...In the fifth Parliament, of which the first session opened in 1871... Mr A. Collyns sat for
Collingwood till 1874, when he was succeeded by Mr. W. Gibbs.
Mr. ARTHUR SHUCKBURGH COLLYNS, J.P., represented the Golden Bay electorate
from 1868 to 1873, and the Suburbs of Nelson in 1881. He was also for some years a
member of the Provincial Council and of Mr. Curtis's Executive. Mr. Collyns was nominated
by the Atkinson Government, one of the Governors of Nelson College, and a member of the
Marlborough Waste Lands Board; but he resigned the College governorship in 1885, on going
to reside on his sheep run at Kaikoura. He was elected chairman of the Kaikoura County
Council in 1885, and retained the position until 1887, when he ceased to reside at Kaikoura,
and returned to Nelson, and sent his two youngest boys to Nelson College. Mr. Collyns was
made a Justice of the Peace by Mr. Stafford's Government in 1868. In the winter of 1869,
accompanied by Mr. T. Mackay, he went, at the request of the Nelson townsfolk, over the
Mount Arthur range, to decide on a feasible pack track to Karamea. In 1872, Mr. T.
Mackay, having discovered the Rai Saddle, Mr. Collyns went there and `blazed' the track,
which has since become the coach road to Blenheim. In order to dissipate the doubts which
existed in Nelson as to the feasibility of this line, he rode through it to the Pelorus before any track was cut. Afterwards he took Bishop Suter and Sir James Hector through; and the
favourable opinions of these well known gentlemen helped to raise the line in public esteem.
The Bishop was so pleased with his ride through the wild bush that he gave Mr. Collyns five
pounds to construct a bridge over a somewhat dangerous gully; and this was for years called
the Bishop's bridge. Afterwards Mr. A. P. Seymour, then Superintendent of Marlborough,
granted Mr. Collyns £100 from the Provincial chest to make a horse track, as far as the
money would go. With this money he caused a fairly good horse track to be made from the
Saddle to an old surveyors' camp in the Rai Valley. With the help of Mr. W. Wastney, and of
other members of the Wakapuaka Road Board, of which he was then chairman, Mr. Collyns
also laid out a track from Wakapuaka to the Saddle; and this track was afterwards altered and
improved by Government surveyors. In 1881 being then in the House of Representatives, he,
with the assistance of other Nelson members, induced Sir John Hall's Government to construct
the present Rai road. Mr. Collyns, who is a member of the Anglican Church, was born in
Devonshire, England, in the year 1832. He has on several occasions been a member of the
General Synod, and now represents Kaikoura in the Nelson Diocesan Synod. He came out in
the ship `Pekin' and landed in Nelson on the 31st of December, 1849. Mr. Collyns is a
widower, and has eleven children; and his eldest son, Mr. John Ulric Collyns, is one of the
masters at Christ's College, Christchurch.