Batley Tony

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Batley, Robert Anthony Leighton 1923 - 2004

Tony Batley at the 1968 NZAA conference in Whanganui

Tony Batley was the grandson of Maowhango pioneer settlers Robert and Emily Batley[1]. He lived and farmed in the area all his life, becoming expert on its human history. His publications mostly relate to his home territory. Tony had a major role in the preservation of the Springvale Bridge and the Moawhango memorial chapel. His efforts to have historic heritage properly considered in the Tongariro power development project lead to an intensive archaeological campaign by Trevor Hosking that Tony oversaw. Tony was to publish a general historical review to accompany the reports[2] but the illustrations were incomplete at the time of his death and the manuscript has languished since.

Tony was President of NZAA, local filekeeper for the site recording scheme, a long term member of the Polynesian Society Board and served for a period on the Historic Places Trust Board.

Janet Davidson contributed an obituary to Archaeology in New Zealand 47(3):162-4.


1949 Legendary footprints on the Poutu Stream, Rotoaira, 'Journal of the Polynesian Society 58:47-50.

1950 Inland Patea genealogies, Journal of the Polynesian Society Vol 59:63-75

1956 Some practical aspects of dendrochronology in New Zealand, Journal of the Polynesian Society 65:232-244.

1957 A dendroglyph from Inland Patea (Upper Rangitikei), Journal of the Polynesian Society 66:210.

1958 Moawhango Valley and school : a short history of the Inland Patea published to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of the Moawhango Maori School 1897-1957 Moawhango School Jubilee Committee, Taihape.

1960 Inland Patea NZAA Newsletter 3(4):14-16.

1961 Otaihape field group NZAA Newsletter 4(4):3-4.

1968 A pottery cooking vessel from Mono Island, Journal of the Polynesian Society 77:74 - 76.

1971 Historical archaeology in the inland Patea: an introduction. NZAA Newsletter 14(3):72-73.

1973 Ngati Rangi: Whiro's family at Murimotu, North Island, New Zealand, Journal of the Polynesian Society 82:343-354.


  1. See Tony's article on his grandfather in DONZB
  2. Newman, M. 1988 Archaeological Investigations in the vicinity of Lake Rotoaira and the lower Tongariro River 1966–71. New Zealand Historical Places Trust Publication 21.