Tāmaki history comes to life on Cultural Tour
Some of the most significant moments in Tāmaki history were revisited during a recent tour of the area.
The tour, which started and finished at Ruapotaka Marae in Glen Innes, included a trek up Maungarei (Mt Wellington), offering impressive views of the city against a historical backdrop of how strategic the maunga (mountain) was in the past. It offered views of the entire region, with tribal activity often visible from the summit.
The welcoming of visitors to the former pa site, battles fought with muskets and the revolutionary introduction of the easily-grown potato were all covered by the speakers.
The cultural tour also stopped at Te Waipuna a Rangiātea – a hidden spring off Mt Wellington Highway.
Tāmaki Regeneration Company’s (TRC) Community Engagement team organised for members of its Community Liaison Committee (CLC) to join the tour, while Pita Turei (Ngāi Tai Ki Tāmaki, Ngāti Paoa, Ngā Rauru Kītahi), Taiaha Hawke
(Ngati Whātua Orākei) and Papa Tautoko Witika (Ngati Whātua), provided a historical narrative at several important spots.
Participants were invited so they could come together and experience local history from a Māori perspective, and balance that alongside changes happening in Tāmaki as part of the regeneration programme. Tāmaki Regeneration Pasifika staff led an A’va ceremony at the end of the tour to acknowledge the Pacific ancestors who travelled to the area and a shared connection with the deity Mataaho.
TRC Community Liason Committie member Deborah Misiuepa says the tour provided her with “a great historical foundation to preserve and be considerate of in future development”.
The committee acts as a link between Tāmaki Regeneration and the community. Ruapotaka Marae manager Georgie Thompson says its Facebook post about the tour generated “a massive amount of interest from many local community members wanting to participate in this type of activity to learn about local Māori history”. TRC community engagement manager Sjimmy Fransen says the tour was a fantastic way for CLC members and TRC whānau to understand the importance of connecting with Tāmaki’s deep historical roots. “Tāmaki is a quickly developing area, but often remembering our past can offer new perspectives on where we are headed.”