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Images courtesy of the Marlborough Historical Society; Marlborough Museum Archives.
In 1918 the Marlborough Hospital Board bought the Holmdale Homestead from Mr Thomas Bell who was an agent for the Holm Shipping Line. The Hospital Board paid $6000 for the homestead which included 5.5 acres of land.
Some alterations and a new ward was added together with a Nurses Home to cater for the staff who lived on the grounds.
In 1971 Father Sloane was concerned about the elderly folk in Blenheim and he and several others managed to lease the Nurses Home from the Marlborough Hospital Board for a peppercorn rental of $2.00 per year.
In 1973 after many working bees and fundraising efforts Bethsaida Home for the Aged was opened offering a home to 15 residents. In 1988 Holmdale land and buildings was offered to Bethsaida Trust and it was at this time that the Maternity Home was converted into a Rest home.
The name Bethsaida comes from the Bible and means “a place of rest” and was also a fishing village on the shores of Lake Galilee where it is believed Jesus fed the 5000.