Pioneer Wooden Toys
Pioneer Wooden Toys was established in 1980 when Murray Neales based in the Pukekohe region, bought the fledgling business after seeing the potential in a couple of the five products that were being produced at the time.
Murray set about improving the quality of the toys with an eye on durability. Kindergartens were enquiring after his products after seeing them at a local craft fair and he knew being a father himself, the toys had to last.
The product range swelled over the following years, and after 35 very happy contented years, it was time to hand it on to someone else who had the desire and passion to carry it on.
Murray still works a couple of hours a day teaching me the craft of a Toymaker, I must say he is a wonderfully generous man whom I’m honoured to know.
Woodworking has been a lifelong passion of mine, I have renovated several houses and being a father myself, I found myself constantly in the shed crafting dolls furniture and catapults with my daughter alongside often providing the ideas for her next toy, or improvements on my designs!
My father is a qualified cabinet maker and joiner by trade and is now a builder of top end houses and holiday homes in Akaroa for the last 35 years, you could say sawdust runs in our blood!
Dad is due to retire in a year and will be relocating with Mum to the Awhitu peninsular, when I mentioned I had met Murray through a friend, Dad and I after several discussions decided to buy Pioneer lock stock and barrel !
I can’t explain the joy I feel, from making something with my hands that provide instant smiles on the faces of the Grandparents Parents, Aunts and Uncles and friends that buy our toys for their little ones and oh my goodness the look on the childrens faces as they browse the range is priceless!