Gateway to the Hurunui

Landmarks in Amberley

Cob Cottage

Cob, a mixture of clay and other materials, was a common building material in early 19th-century due to a lack of timber.  The cob cottage in Amberley is a restored and historic building. It houses a collection of furnishings and clothing used by historic  settlers. The cottage is made of a mix of clay, sand, straw, water and earth. It was gifted to the Amberley Historical Society from it's previous owner, and moved after damage from nor'west gales in 1975.

Cob Cottage

Church of the Most Holy Passion

The Catholic Church of the Most Holy Passion was built in 1866 by an early premier of New Zealand, Sir Frederick Weld. It was moved to its Amberley site on State Highway 1 in the mid-1950s. In 1903 it was mentioned by the Cyclopedia of New Zealand that the church was erected in the early 1860s, and also had accommodation for 150 people.

Writer for The Press Mike Crean recalls: "I remember, as a boy, seeing a steam traction engine hauling it, on a low trailer, from its first location at Brackenfield. It had been built in that tiny settlement, a few kilometres west of Amberley, thanks to the generous endowment of noted pioneer Sir Frederick Weld. He owned Brackenfield Estate in the early 1860s and was premier of New Zealand from 1864 to 1865."


Amberley House

First established in 1893 and nestled in the tranquil countryside and situated on an expansive country estate, Amberley House is a gracious historic homestead and is surrounded by magnificent gardens and beautiful rural grounds. In 1920 the property was established as the private Amberley House Girls’ Collegiate School. At the time, consisting of 144 acres of farmland, was converted into the school by adding two stories to the original house, as well as other facilities. The rest of the land was farmed to produce vegetables and food for the student’s and their ponies. The school closed in 1942. The property’s expansive stables were developed when a past owner set up a horse breeding operation. A well-known racehorse, ‘Sailing Home’, was bred on the property, and went on to win the Auckland Cup and the Trentham Stakes. You can get in contact with the team at Amberley House, or see historic pictures, through their website:


Amberley World War One Mural

The mural is featured at Markham Street, opposite the Amberley fire station.


It's a collectively created mural to commemorate World War 1 in association with Rangiora High School students and artists. The project was made possible with funding from Hurunui Creative Communities Scheme, the Amberley Lions and business sponsorship.


Library War Memorial

Amberley First World War memorial. Situated on Carters Road, Amberley. The new Hurunui District Library was built on the previous RSA site and the war memorial was moved to accommodate this. The war memorial was unveiled on 11 November 1923.

The Amberley School also has it's own war memorial, and Amberley also has a South African War Memorial. These can be viewed on


Amberley War Memorial