Charity and community leaders mark 100 years of Thomas George Macarthy Trust

Charity and community leaders mark 100 years of Thomas George Macarthy Trust

On Friday, the life and legacy of Wellington businessman, brewer and benefactor Thomas George Macarthy was honoured by charity and community leaders at Government House.


Upon Macarthy’s death on 19 August 1912, the TG Macarthy Trust was incorporated with the purpose of supporting charities and education organisations from Turangi to Wellington.

Since then, the Trust has distributed almost $60 million to schools, kindergartens, play centres, kohanga reo, Pacific Island language groups and other community organisations such as St John’s Ambulance, NZ Plunket and Ronald McDonald House.

Governor-General Sir Jerry Mateparae hosted charity and community leaders at a High Tea at Government House to launch the centenary of the Trust and celebrate the life and legacy of Thomas George Macarthy. It was the first of several centenary events, including an exhibition that will travel around the region during the centenary year.

Governor-General announcement

The Governor-General announced the TG Macarthy Board of Governors is working with Wellington Sculpture Trust to commission a sculpture to recognise the contribution TG Macarthy has made to the Wellington region.

The sculpture will take pride of place at the bottom of Cuba Street in the vicinity of Bond Street, the Opera House and the Town Hall (all significant landmarks associated with TG Macarthy) and is expected to take two to three years to commission and complete.

There are a number of connections between the selected site and TG Macarthy…

  • Macarthy owned a brewery in Old Custom House Street (Bond Street)
  • Macarthy was a director of the Wellington Opera House Company who championed the construction of a purpose built Opera House for the city.
  • Macarthy played an important role in the success of the Industrial Exhibition 1896‐97 that was held in Wellington. The main exhibition was held in the Cuba Street Extension which we assume to be Lower Cuba Street and the direct link that used to go to Harris Street.
  • There is also a building on Lower Cuba Street that was once owned by Macarthy.

Earlier this year, Macarthy was inducted into the Fairfax Media NZ Business Hall of Fame for his brewing enterprises and business interests. The celebrations at Government House were focused on Macarthy’s role as generous benefactor.

The TG Macarthy Trust is governed by a Board including the Governor-General, Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown, Archbishop of Wellington John Dew and Roger Sowry as the Prime Minister’s representative.

Public Trust is the trustee for the Trust, and advises the Board on investment and grant strategies. Public Trust also performs the administrative functions of the Trust, including management of applications, distribution of grants and evaluation of the social impact of grants.

“As trustee, we feel privileged to be involved with this Trust. It’s wonderful to see the positive impact Thomas George Macarthy continues to have on people throughout the region,” Public Trust Chief Executive Grenville Gaskell said.

“This is a great opportunity to celebrate the legacy of a man who has contributed so much to so many different areas of society, and to highlight the contribution he makes to our communities to this day.

“A century on, the Trust is in extremely good shape for the next hundred years.”

More information

For information on the centenary of the TG Macarthy Trust please contact Mark Cassidy, National Manager Business Services, on 04 978 4518 or 029 978 4518.

For more information on the sculpture please contact Jon Craig, Wellington Sculpture Trust on 04 528 3550 or 021 254 9915.

Notes to editors:
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Contact: Mark Cassidy »

Phone: DDI :04 978 4518 or 029 978 4518