Lowcay Family History

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Frederick Henry Lowcay

Henry Frederick Lowcay was born in Bridport, Devon, England, in 1847. After his marriage to Sofie De La Taste, he moved initially to South Africa.

By the 1890s, vineyards in Victoria and New South Wales were being wiped out by the disease Phylloxera. The large Seppelt and Hardy wineries searched wine countries for an authority who could ensure their South Australian vineyards did not suffer the same fate.

Henry was appointed Chief Inspector of Vineyards in South Australia, and so he moved to Australia with his family. Perhaps the Lowcay family can take some credit for the flourishing and internationally renowned wine industry in the Barossa Valley!

He visited New Zealand in 1895, and publicly expressed the opinion that the North Island had everything favorable to become a great wine centre. He recommended planting vines on a large scale and declared there were thousands of acres in Hawkes Bay, and Wairarapa, where vines would grow to great perfection and yield heavy crops. Varieties already grown, in his opinion, possessed all the qualities for making excellent wine, which would compare with the better class of French wines.

Today, both Hawkes Bay and South Wairarapa are internationally recognised areas in the wine world.