This wonderful historic place suffered extensive damage during the earthquake on 4 September 2010. It is currently being rebuilt. The Hororata Historical Society continues to open the Museum on-site on fine Sunday afternoons between 1.30 – 4.00 pm, September - May inclusive and you're very welcome to visit the Museum. Visitors are asked to keep away from building site itself until further notice.
In 1864 Bentley Coton and his wife bought 50 acres of land at Hororata on the Canterbury Plains. Coton built a small cob cottage that originally consisted of five rooms including an attic bedroom.
The property was subsequently purchased by the Oliver family in 1927 and it remained in the family until the 1970's. The cottage was uninhabited throughout this time, and gradually fell into disrepair.
In 1971, the owners offered the cottage and a quarter acre of surrounding land to the government as a reserve. Coton's Cottage became a historic reserve three years later, and the day-to-day management of the reserve was transferred to the Hororata Historical Society. The Society largely rebuilt the cottage in 1977, re-using many of the original materials. Subsequently, the Society moved a second building onto the property as the local museum.
The Cottage, furnished from the Hororata Historical Society's collection, is an example of a typical 19th century dwelling on a small Canterbury holding.