James Fletcher Jnr

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James Fletcher Jnr

James Muir Cameron Fletcher.jpg
Portrait of Sir James Fletcher Jnr
Born25 December 1914
Died29 August 2007(2007-08-29) (aged 92)
OccupationManaging Director Fletcher Holdings 1942–1979
Chairman of Fletcher Holdings from 1979 to 1981
President and director of the Fletcher Challenge 1981–1990.
Spouse(s)Lady Vaughan Fletcher

Sir James Muir Cameron Fletcher ONZ (25 December 1914 – 29 August 2007[1]), often known as Jim or JC[2] Junior, was a New Zealand industrialist known for heading Fletcher Construction, one of the country's largest firms. His father, Sir James Fletcher (Senior), founded the company in 1908.

Early life and family[edit]

Fletcher was born in Dunedin, New Zealand on Christmas Day 1914, he was James Senior's second son. In 1942, the year Sir James became head of Fletcher Holdings, he married Vaughan Gunthorp, his office assistant (b. 9 February 1912, Balclutha).[3] Lady Fletcher was Treasurer of the Mental Health Foundation. In 1988 she was awarded the MBE.

Sir James and Lady Fletcher had three children - Jim, Angus, and Hugh Fletcher, their eldest son Jim was killed by an intruder at his Bay of Plenty bach (holiday home) on New Year's Eve 1993. Angus married Christine Fletcher, former Minister of the Crown and Mayor of Auckland, and Hugh now runs Fletcher Holdings.[citation needed]

Fletcher Construction[edit]

In 1937 Sir James joined his fathers' construction business. Following the election of the First Labour Government in 1935, Sir James senior established an enduring friendship with the government, leading to Fletchers' building some of the first state houses in New Zealand;[2] when James senior was seconded by the government in 1942, James junior, took over the running of Fletcher Holdings.[2] At the time he was just 27 years old.[4] Among his achievements was the forestry joint venture with the Holland National Government in the 1950s to build the Tasman Pulp and Paper Company mill at Kawerau. Sir James was chairman of Fletcher Holdings from 1972 to 1981 and was president of the new Fletcher Challenge conglomerate from 1981,[2][4] he resigned as a director of the company in 1990.

He was knighted in 1980.


  1. ^ Fletcher Trust (30 August 2007). "Sir James Fletcher dies at 92". Scoop. Retrieved 31 August 2007.
  2. ^ a b c d "University of Auckland Business History Project - Fletcher Challenge". University of Auckland. Retrieved 31 August 2007.
  3. ^ "Biography - Lady Fletcher". Fletcher Trust.
  4. ^ a b Graeme Hunt (31 August 2007). "Sir James Fletcher, the mild-mannered man of steel". New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 31 August 2007.

Further reading[edit]

  • Goldsmith, Paul (2009). Fletchers: A Centennial History of Fletcher Building (hardback). Auckland: Davia Ling Publishing. ISBN 978-1-877378-35-5.
  • Parker, Selwyn (1994). Made in New Zealand: The Story of Jim Fletcher (hardback). Auckland: Hodder & Stoughton. ISBN 0-340-59951-0.
  • Smith, Jack (2009). No Job Too Big: A History of Fletcher Construction, Volume I: 1909-1940 (hardback). Wellington: Steele Roberts. ISBN 978-1-877448-69-0.