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02 December 2018


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Dear Mr Wallen - Many thanks for your kind enquiry. I am very happy that you live near Tigi Plantations Baiyer Valley near Mt Hagen and you are are a third year business research graduate .

I spent several years managing Tigi plantations and developed it into one of the highest yielding coffee plantations in PNG .

The owner Mr John Dowse Collins a very hard working person nephew of the early Highlands explorer, Mr Danny Leahy, who sadly contracted leukemia and passed away in Sydney.

His brothers Eddie and Rod Collins owned the famous company Collins and Leahy based in Goroka.

After John Collins died Tigi Plantation was unfortunately mismanaged. At that time his three sons John, James and Tony were too young to take over.

Should you require any further information I will be happy to assist you.

Dear Mr Mark Earnest - I am very grateful about this post and comment about this Tigi Plantation. I am from that place and wonder why this plantation is not in operation now.

I'm currently a third year student and trying to do business research but couldn't find any articles online to do my research based on Tigi Plantation. I only came across the article published.

Thank you for the clarification. If you have any information please let me know. Thank you.

Please note that Mark's email address is actually, the one below is incorrect.

Fixed - KJ

I received the following email from Mark Young this morning and thought it worth posting to clear up a couple of my comments:

"I was requested by my then employer John Dowse Collins, owner of Tigi Plantations, Bayer Valley, Mount Hagen, to assist his uncle Danny Leahy to improve the coffee on his Korgua Plantation. Therefore I spent a few months with Danny on his coffee plantation.

"At that time, Danny was partially blind and deaf which was due to undernourishment during his early pioneering days. He was very kind, gentle and a very considerate person but where work was concerned, he was absolutely very strict! He always spelt the valley as Waghi! Perhaps, the name has since changed.

"Danny Leahy and his elder brother Michael Leahy were the first white men to enter the Waghi (Wahgi as it is spelt now) and to discover a new race of people in the early 1930s, whose existence was unknown to the outside world.

"I developed Tigi Plantations into the highest yielding coffee plantation in Papua New Guinea and in the Pacific. John Collins, sadly and unfortunately died of leukemia in the early 1970s. I still keep in touch with his widow Ann Collins who lives in Glen Haven, NSW. His sons Johnny, Jamie, and Tony have done remarkably well in shipping in PNG.

"I am well known to John’s brothers, Eddie, Joe and Rod Collins, owners at that time, of the largest trading company - Messrs. Collins and Leahy of Goroka. I was also well known to Young Danny Leahy and his younger brother John Leahy whom I stayed with at Asaro Plantations near Goroka for a short while.

"I am a very close friend of the Hagon family, but I changed Dick’s name to Dirk in the book on purpose so as not to disclose his identity. His real name, as not many people know, is Hunter Richard Hagon. He hails from a very famous West Australian family. His coffee plantation, Gumanch was the largest plantation in the Highlands.

"Later he went on to purchase many vast plantations plus went into mining ventures. He has spoken to me a few times a year ago, and was very interested that I should assist him in all his vast plantations. His former wife, Caroline Hagon now Caroline Laws is also a very close friend of mine and so also her lovely daughters, whom I have known from the time they were children. The Hagons were the first to receive copies of my book 'Gumanch'.

"Sir, I wish to inform you that copies my books 'Tigi' and 'Gumanch' can be ordered by email from or by Whatsapp (+91) 8861427498.

"I do hope the above clarifies some of your doubts and queries.

"With my warm regards, Mark Ernest Young"

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