Minister welcomes opening of Heritage Park

  • Maggie Barry

Conservation Minister Maggie Barry today welcomed the opening of Rangihoua Heritage Park in Northland as a special cultural and historical asset to be enjoyed by all New Zealanders.

The 46 hectare park, near Kerikeri, was opened to the public today by the Governor-General, Lieutenant General The Right Honourable Sir Jerry Mateparae.  

The park is the result of eight years of collaboration between the Marsden Cross Trust Board, the Anglican Church, Northland Iwi Ngati Torehina / Ngapuhi and the Department of Conservation.

“While this park marks the spot where Reverend Samuel Marsden delivered the first sermon on New Zealand soil 200 years ago, it also provides us with a place to learn about and reflect on New Zealand’s journey as a bicultural nation,” says Ms Barry.

The park features a visitor facility, to be known as Rore Kahu, and a “pilgrimage pathway” with historical displays and interpretative panels, leading to where the Marsden Cross Memorial was erected in 1907.

The Department of Conservation contributed about $220,000 towards track development and car park facilities, as well as the archaeological investigation in 2012/13 which provided much of the information now on display.