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Labyrinth on the Denniston Plateau

Denniston: "A place either loved or hated but always with a passion"


"The quality of the coal on the Denniston plateau, some 600 metres high, had been quickly recognised. But it was the completion of the cable railway known as the Denniston incline in 1879, and the branch rail line to Westport that made mining the field possible. The incline gained a reputation as the ‘eighth wonder of the world’, being just over 1.5 kilometres long, with a very steep gradient."


~ Te Ara on Coal and coal mining, the 19th Century





"Sylvia and Gary James are two of the remaining residents of Denniston. At an altitude of 600 metres, it was one of the most isolated mining settlements in New Zealand, and has an alpine climate. Although the coal miners have moved away, Sylvia and Gary have great affection for the unique area where they live. Together they run Friends of the Hill, a group of people who previously lived at Denniston."


~ Te Ara on Denniston Residents



Sylvia and Gary James and family have created a labyrinth on the Denniston plateau. The labyrinth lies behind their house on Department of Conservation land.



Friends of the Hill

Physical Address:

Denniston Plateau

South Island

New Zealand


Availability: Phone before visiting.


Contact: Sylvia James


Phone: +64 3 789-9755





Sylvia James email

Getting there ...

More on Denniston

Under construction Denniston Residents

Waiting for a photograph of the labyrinth ...

Denniston Experience Miner's shack, Denniston Denniston Incline video DOC and Denniston DOC Denniston Learn More Forest and Bird