ntil 1926 the farming settlement of Coatesville was known as Fernielea. It was renamed Coatesville in honour of Prime Minister Gordon Coates who kept his election promise to metal the area’s dangerous clay roads. Between 1916 and 1920 a school operated in a private house, and when it closed, children had to travel to Albany. Their trip was impossibleinwinterbecauseoftheclay roads. A new school opened in 1923, but it wasn’t until 1940 that a new school building was provided for the 30 pupils. The first telephone was installed in 1924, and electricity in 1934. The hall was built in 1926 and there was a small post office next door. There were gumfields in the area with a large settlement called Puketui where the forest lookout is now. There were no shops, and in 1922, the Moss family started selling groceries from a spare room in their house, and later from a store they built near their front gate. Bread and meat came from Albany twice a week. Several years later they built a store on the main road. Doris O’Neill, nee Moss, writing in the Coatesville School Jubilee booklet, refers to other pioneer families, namely the Heginbothoms, Inglises and Morrissys.
www.coatesville.org.nz The area now has many large homes on well- groomed lifestyle blocks, a pony club, licensed cafe, gift shop and a real estate agency
Fernielea Cafe: Coatesville was known as Fernielea until 1926.
Coatesville school: The first school building was built in 1940.
Town hall: Built in 1926.