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Hilda Morton was born in 1884 in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, England, the daughter of Alfred and Charlotte nee Maiden.


In 1906, Hilda married William Charles Hoddle at Chesterfield, and the couple, with a young daughter, came to Hawera about 1913.  William worked in the furnishing trade with a Mr Pratt in premises now occupied by Barrys Restaurant (was D McCormick & Co).


Hilda bought the Taranaki Tearooms in High Street, and as the business grew, moved across the street to the top floor of the Blair and Sellars Buildings where she opened the Carlton Tea and Dining Rooms (now above Gerrands Jewellers). 


Hilda later sold this business to a Mrs Gray, and then she and William took a trip to England. Upon their return, Hilda opened a home bakery in Union Street.  Later she started another tearooms business, the Rewa, upstairs in the Central Buildings, in partnership with Mrs Elizabeth Emma Morton (nee Evans, formerly Gemmell), her sister-in-law. Hilda retired from business about 1940.


A swimming enthusiast, Hilda was involved with the Hawera club and was one of its instructors in a vigorous learn-to-swim campaign.  She was also a cookery and homecrafts judge of some note, her service being in demand for many district shows.  Hilda was also involved with the Hawera branch of the Women's National Reserve. A politically aware woman, she was known to hold heated debates on her point of view.


Hilda Hoddle died on the 11 May 1950 at Ohangai aged 66 years, and is buried at the Hawera cemetery.



Obituary "Hawera Star" 12 May 1950

Mrs Pat Bourke, Inaha (granddaughter)