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18/01/2019 2:00 p.m.
Please note: these tours are now fully booked.
Last year the Council put on 15 free heritage bus tours, focusing on Waipā’s historic sites including battle sites from the New Zealand Land Wars. All 15 tours booked out quickly with people asking to go on a waiting list.
Government support for the Council-initiated tours has now translated into a $2,500 grant from the Commemorating Waitangi Day fund from the Ministry for Culture and Heritage. The fund aims to help promote nation-building through wide community participation, and encourage the celebration of an inclusive New Zealand identity. The government grant covers the total costs of a further five bus tours to be provided during Waitangi week (Monday 4 February to Thursday 7 February 2019).
Council’s heritage manager Tony Roxburgh said it was clear the community has an appetite to learn more about rich history of the place they call home. He was delighted government funding had been secured, noting Waipā’s unique history was nationally important.
“The Waipā district has an enormous history which played a key role in the development of this nation. Many of the significant Land Wars sites are right here on our doorstep and the bus tours provide the opportunity for people to find out so much more about them.”
Two tours will explore the Cambridge side of the district, with the remaining three on the Te Awamutu side. The eastern tours will explore the stories of the Cambridge Town Hall, Lake Te Koo Utu, Roto-o-rangi, Pukemako (Sanatorium Hill) and Lake Karāpiro. Key stops on the western tours incude Rangiaowhia, Orākau and Alexandra Armed Constabulary Redoubt. Te Awamutu Museum will have a replica of the Treaty of Waitangi on display.
The tours will also provide information about Waipā’s new discovery centre – Te Ara Wai – to be built in Te Awamutu and focusing strongly on Waipā’s history.
Five tours are being offered with four beginning at 9am and finished by 12 noon. The second tour on Waitangi Day will begin at 1pm and finish at 4pm. There will be no charge.
Numbers on each tour are limited to 30 people. Anyone interested in joining a tour should register at www.waipadc.govt.nz/bus-tours or call Council on 0800 924 723.