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Hyundai Country Calendar


Episode 19 - Taking Charge

On the next episode, screening 23 July 2016 at 7pm on TV ONE:


Taking Charge


Before she met her husband, the only things New Plymouth hairdresser Monique Neeson knew about farming came from watching Country Calendar.


But those hours sitting in front of TV proved valuable when she fell in love with Tim.


Tims parents, Alex and Lyn Neeson, run a sheep and beef farm at Tokirima, west of Taumarunui and they are now handing the day-to-day responsibilities to Tim and Monique.


Alex, a mechanic, was desperate to own a patch of land and bought the farm in a mortgagee sale 30 years ago.


Back in the 80s wool prices were on a slide and no one wanted to farm here, says Tim. But Dads bit of land has become a family farm. Its the place I love and the place I want to bring up my children.


Monique Neeson remembers Tim first driving her out to the farm on a dusty gravel road. I honestly didnt think people lived in places like this. The hills were steep and the mist over the river was low. But there is something very special about this place. It just grabs you. I love it so much.


Tim admits Monique is pretty useful in the yards. Shes always had natural stock sense right from the start.


Lyn and Alex still live on the farm and help Tim with mustering and docking.


Lyn and Monique have set up a boutique business using the first shear from their spring lambs to create wool blankets. The pair use Taumarunui woman Jenny Marshall, a former seamstress for fashion designer Trelise Cooper, to sew their blankets.


Tim and Monique have three children. The youngest, Zadee, arrived in April soon after Country Calendar finished filming.


We always wanted to bring our family up on the farm, Tim says. The kids are lucky to be able have this as a life.


For more about the Neesons blankets, visit:


For more about the properties of wool visit:


For more about Taumarunui, visit:


For more about the Forgotten World Highway, visit:





Dan Henry



Barrington West

Steve Fisher


Aerial Photography

Barrington West


Field Sound

Brad George

Tony Spear

Kevin Hill


Editor & Colourist

Mike Townsend


Sound Mixer

Ian Leslie



Stephen Gallagher


Post Production Manager

Bailey Palmer


Production Manager

Robyn Best



Vivienne Jeffs


Network Executive

Jude Callen


Associate Producer

Dan Henry



Kerryanne Evans



Julian OBrien


ÓTVNZ 2016