George Arney

For the BBC journalist, see George Arney (journalist).
The Honourable
Sir George Arney
2nd Chief Justice of New Zealand
In office
Nominated by Edward Stafford
Appointed by Thomas Gore Browne
Preceded by William Martin
Succeeded by James Prendergast
Personal details
Born 1810
Salisbury,  United Kingdom
Died 1883
Torquay,  United Kingdom
Spouse(s) Harriet Parr

Sir George Alfred Arney (1810 – 7 April 1883) was the second Chief Justice of New Zealand.

Early life

Arney was born in 1810 in Salisbury, England. His parents were William Arney, a barrister, and Maria Charlotte Arney. He was educated at Winchester and Brasenose College, Oxford. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in 1832 and a Master of Arts in 1833. He was admitted to Lincoln's Inn in 1829, and received his call to the bar in 1837.[1]

He married Harriet Parr in 1835, but his wife died only seven years later.[1]

New Zealand

He was appointed by the Colonial Office on the advice of Justice Lord Coleridge on 2 September 1857,[1] and arrived in Auckland, New Zealand, on the brig Gertrude on 19 February 1858.[2] He was Chief Justice from 1858 to 1875.[3] He was appointed Administrator of the Government under Governor Sir George Bowen on 1 October 1869 and assumed office on 21 March 1873.[4] Arney administered the country for three months between the departure of Sir George Bowen and the arrival of Sir James Fergusson.[5] Arney retired from that role on 14 June 1873 with the arrival of Fergusson.[4]

He was appointed to the Legislative Council on 20 February 1858 (the day after his arrival in the country) and remained a legislative councillor until his resignation on 13 June 1866.[6]

Arney was knighted in 1862 while Chief Justice.[7]

Governor George Grey resigned Arney's judgeship in 1875. Arney retired to Torquay.[1] His brother, Colonel Arney, who had previously served with the 58th Regiment in New Zealand, died on 6 April 1879 in Cheltenham.[8] Arney received a significant inheritance from his brother.[1]

Death and commemoration

He died in Torquay on 7 April 1883.[1] Arney Street in Paeroa, which is part of State Highway 26, is named for him.[9]


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 McLintock, A. H., ed. (22 April 2009). "Arney, Sir George Alfred". An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand. Ministry for Culture and Heritage / Te Manatū Taonga. Retrieved 27 September 2013. Check date values in: |year=, |year= / |date= mismatch (help)
  2. "Shipping Intelligence". Daily Southern Cross. XV (1112). 23 February 1858. p. 2. Retrieved 28 September 2013.
  3. The London Gazette: no. 22198. p. 4745. 9 November 1858.
  4. 1 2 Wilson 1985, p. 43.
  5. "Sir George Alfred Arney". Otago Witness (2233). 17 December 1896. p. 7. Retrieved 28 September 2013.
  6. Wilson 1985, p. 149.
  7. The London Gazette: no. 22645. p. 8. 18 July 1862.
  8. "Special Telegram". Otago Daily Times (5400). 10 June 1879. p. 2. Retrieved 28 September 2013.
  9. Cassrels, Lewis. "Origin of Paeroa Street Names". Ohinemuri Regional History Journal. 4 (September 1965). Retrieved 28 September 2013.


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