The Leslie Hutchins Conservation Foundation was established in 1994 by the late (Sir) Leslie Hutchins, DCNZM, OBE, JP and founder of the company Fiordland Travel Ltd (now called Real Journeys Ltd), which operates throughout Fiordland, Queenstown and Stewart Island.
Les had a lifetime interest in conservation with involvement including:
â€¢Â Â Â A former member of the National Parks and Reserves Authority of New Zealand
â€¢Â Â Â A former member of the New Zealand Conservation Authority
â€¢Â Â Â Guardian of Lakes Manapouri, Monowai, and Te Anau
â€¢Â Â Â A member of the Commission for National Parks and Protected Areas.
In July 2011 Les was posthumously inducted into the Fairfax Media New Zealand Business Hall of Fame.Â This was a great honor for Les and the Hutchins family and a lasting tribute to the work he pioneered in tourism and conservation in New Zealand.
In order to ensure that as many people as possible have the ability to enjoy New Zealandâ€™s southern lakes and conservation areas as he did, Les established the Conservation Foundation (a charitable trust), with an initial contribution of $200,000.
Since its inception the fund has grown considerably with further support from the Hutchins family and generous annual donations by Real Journeys Ltd.Â The Foundation is now administered by several Trustees who have the same enthusiasm for the areas Les loved and for the work he started.
Les is succeeded by his wife Olive, Lady Hutchins and their five children, numerous grandchildren and ever increasing number of great-grandchildren!Â Fiordland is still considered home and the family remains involved with Real Journeys Ltd which has grown into a widely renowned and recognized tourist company.
The Foundation has received Inland Revenue Department approval.Â Donations to the Foundation are tax deductible for companies and individuals who feel to contribute.