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Taupo Monumental

Taupō Monumental, established in 1979, is now owned and operated by Nathan and Kelly Martin.

Nathan’s story
Nathan had an early introduction to the monumental mason business.  At 14 his stepfather passed away and when Nathan and his mum visited a Hamilton monumental company to arrange his memorial, the owner took an immediate liking to young Nathan and offered him an after school job cleaning memorials in the cemetery. Within six months Nathan lost his much-loved grandfather and was privileged to help create his memorial – the first in what was to be a lengthy career – and the start of his unofficial apprenticeship. 

At 16 his apprenticeship in monumental masonry began in earnest and being the early 1990s he was lucky enough to learn traditional techniques such as hand chisel and lead lettering.  Today, he’s one of only two in the Waikato district with this specialised skill.

At 19, and his apprenticeship complete, Nathan began Creative Stone; his own business based in Hamilton and he remains involved in its day-to-day running.  During this time he learned stained glass and sandblasting techniques and operated a decorative glass company.

Fast forward and in 2014 Nathan’s wife Kelly accepted a position with the Tuwharetoa Settlement Trust and the family moved to Taupō with Nathan commuting weekly to and from Hamilton.  When offered the chance to purchase Taupō Monumental in July 2015, Nathan seized the opportunity to take on this well-established business and reunite the family.  And so begins the next stage in their lives in one of New Zealand’s most beautiful places.

Outside work Nathan enjoys hunting, target and pistol shooting and martial arts.  He is an NZ Mountain Safety Council instructor and a member of SAR.  Kelly shares his interest in target shooting and enjoys painting, pottery and hockey.  The pair have three adult children and two huskies.