The Anglo Boer War and second-hand building materials
After the Anglo Boer War (1899 – 1902) the soldiers’ barracks were demolished and sold piece-meal from Roberts’ Heights (which became Voortrekkerhoogte, now Thaba Tshwane). Frank Fewster Chamberlain would trek up to Roberts’ Heights to bid on the materials – comprising largely nails, timber, doors and glass – and then return to Riviera to sell them. The round trip took a week by ox-wagon. In those days the premises were never locked, and trading was to suit customers.
The title deed of the Rietfontein property (pictured right), signed by the surveyor general of the Transvaal in 1905 – Mr JC Smuts.