Named after his grandfather (a Londoner), George Woodham had one sister (Lillian) and four brothers (Jack, Arthur, Keith and David). George’s father Frederick, was born in London and emigrated to New Zealand, where he was originally employed as a plasterer in the North Canterbury area, before enlisting in 1916 to serve in the Great War. On his discharge in 1919, Frederick emigrated to Hari Hari on the West Coast, where his uncle Arthur was a well-known miner and farmer. He purchased land at Evans' Creek and married Elizabeth (the daughter of neighbouring farmer Jack Durnford), in 1920.

(Hari Hari dairy-farming in the 1930's, with Arthur Woodham pictured, right)

On completing his education at Hari Hari School, his son George became a “Service Car Driver”, providing a transportation and delivery service in the South Westland area, (the forerunner of today’s inter-city bus services).

(George Woodham was "Service Car Driver" in the 1940's, quite possibly for Newman Brothers)

George died on 3 September 1949.  The verdict of Hokitika’s coroner, Mr R Paterson, was that George died from “haemorrhage due to a gun shot wound accidentally self-inflicted”. He was buried in accordance with rites of the Church of England three days later in Hari Hari Cemetery,.

George played rugby for the Hari Hari Football Club in the years following World War 2. Following his death, his father presented a shield “to the football clubs in South Westland, from Ross southwards, in memory of our late son George” , in June 1950.

(The 2019 match between Fox, Franz and Haast and Whataroa was played in a blizzard)

The first match for the Woodham Shield was played between Ross and Hari Hari. Originally the competition comprised five teams including Whataroa, Fox and Franz. Fox and Franz combined with Haast to form the "south team". The competition for the Shield has continued uninterrupted for 72 years, with the 2021 Shield winners being Whataroa.

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