Garnet Hercules Mackley

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Garnet Hercules Mackley
Born Garnet Hercules Mackley
(1883-12-09)9 December 1883
Died 24 April 1986(1986-04-24) (aged 102)
Nationality  New Zealand
Occupation businessman, railwayman, politician

Garnet Hercules Mackley (9 December 1883 – 24 April 1986) was a New Zealand businessman, railways manager and politician.

Mackley was born in Port Chalmers.[1] He became general manager of New Zealand Railways in 1933. During his tenure, Mackley worked hard to improve the standard and range of services provided by the railways. He won approval[1] for the construction of an inspection car known as the "Red Terror" in which he travelled the entire system inspecting stations and meeting staff.[2] The car’s success encouraged him to order the construction of railcars that were to serve the railways for many years, specifically the Midland, Wairarapa, Standard, and Vulcan classes.

He also wanted to improve the comfort of passengers, and initiated a local building program which provided the basis of passenger carriage stock for many years.

In 1940 he retired,[3] and was made managing director of the Whakatane Paper Mills.

New Zealand Parliament
Years Term Electorate Party
1943–1946 27th Masterton National
1946–1949 28th Wairarapa National

Mackley then entered politics, becoming a Member of Parliament for the New Zealand National Party. He was elected as the MP for Masterton (1943–1946) and then for Wairarapa (1946–1949), after which he retired.

In 1950 he was appointed to the Legislative Council by National, as a member of the so-called suicide squad charged with voting for the abolition of the Council (or Upper House).


  1. ^ a b Bellamy, Alan. "Mackley, Garnet Hercules". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 5 January 2012.
  2. ^ General Manager's Message (1 September 1934). "Railway Progress in New Zealand". The New Zealand Railways Magazine. 9 (6): 8. Published: New Zealand Government Railways Department, Wellington
  3. ^ Headlight (1 February 1940). "After Forty Years – Retirement of Mr G. H. Mackley, C.M.G., – General Manager of Railways". The New Zealand Railways Magazine. 14 (11): 9. Published: New Zealand Government Railways Department, Wellington
  • Wilson, James Oakley (1985) [First published in 1913]. New Zealand Parliamentary Record, 1840–1984 (4th ed.). Wellington: V.R. Ward, Govt. Printer. OCLC 154283103.
  • Gustafson, Barry (1986). The First 50 Years : A History of the New Zealand National Party. Auckland: Reed Methuen. ISBN 0-474-00177-6.

External links

  • Photos of Mackley and the Red Terror
  • 1938 message as General Manager NZR
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