Alfred Renall wanted a street to be named after him. Alfred Renall wanted a street to be named after him. The 1878 street naming meeting changed the use of the name of Columba Road.
This name, which commemorates the Scottish Saint Columba, was originally to be applied to the road now called Renall Street, but the meeting decided that this should be named after the local miller and politician Alfred Renall. Renall was a colourful and controversial figure in Masterton’s early history. His liberal views and pugnaciousness put him offside with many, but his record of service to the town was exemplary. He served as Mayor and as Chairman of the Trust Lands Trust, as well as many other public bodies.
The name Columba was instead applied to the road originally intended to be named after George Woodroffe, an Irish cabinetmaker and farmer who owned a lot of land on the eastern side of town.
He was an energetic supporter of the Prohibition movement, and served on many local public bodies including the Masterton Borough Council. His modesty led him to decline the honour of having a street named after him.The name of Columba gradually evolved to become Colombo, and was formalised in this form in 1958.
Pic: Alfred Renall, politician and businessman.