Robert McArtney was a popular and personable mayor, but his achievements weren’t show-stoppers.
What he did achieve was greatly in the interest of the public, such as filling in sections of High Street and Grove Road, something which had bothered the Blenheim Borough Council the entire 17 continuous years Mr McArtney had been involved with it.
“These did not make a big show as far as the roads and footpaths were concerned, but they were greatly in the interest of the public from a health point of view, (hear hear.)”, reported the Marlborough Express of April 2, 1901.
“…he had endeavoured to make the interests of the ratepayers his first consideration, he had never had any particular axe to grind.”
The article continued: “He had not done as much during his term of office as Mayor as he would like to have done and he would say to his successor, You may have good intentions at the beginning, but time and opportunity will not allow of the attainment of all.”
And so Mr McArtney stood down and was succeeded by Richard McCallum. He once again contested the 1908 election in the Wairau electorate, but was defeated by John Duncan.