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New Woolshed Bay name continues legacy of local tipuna

Tuesday 5 February 2019 11:32am

The new name and the new sign. The four-hectare property at Woolshed Bay in Queenstown donated to the University of Otago's Foundation Trust in 2016 by the Jardine family has been named Hākitekura, honouring the daughter of prominent Kāti Mamoe chief Tuwiriroa.

A new name for the University of Otago’s newest Central Otago property has been unveiled at a special ceremony this morning.

The stunning four-hectare Woolshed Bay property was donated by the Jardine family to the University of Otago’s Foundation Trust in 2016.

The property will now be known as Hākitekura, honouring the daughter of prominent Kāti Mamoe chief Tuwiriroa. The name was gifted to the Jardines by Ngāi Tahu and was unveiled in front of more than 100 special guests and mana whenua representatives on site this morning. The wooden sign displaying the name was designed and carved by Riki Ngamoki.

Hakitekura grew up in Tahana, now known as Queenstown. One day, she vowed to become the first to swim 3km across Lake Wakatipu after climbing Ben Lomond, a place that would eventually be known as Taumata-a-Hakitekura (The place where Hākitekura sat).

After plenty of training, she arrived at Refuge Point and lit a fire to warm herself, charring the nearby rocks which remain black to this day. The area is now known as Te Ahi a Hākitekura, the fire of Hākitekura.

"We are delighted that the Jardines have chosen the name Hākitekura and we are honoured that mana whenua has granted their wish."

Ōtākou upoko Edward Ellison says gifting the name of a prominent tipuna was not a decision they made lightly.

“For us, Hākitekura is not simply a story or a tipuna. She has continued on her legacy and there are generations who still have distinct ties to her, so the name itself is a highly valued taonga,” Mr Ellison says.

“However in gifting this name, we believe this property will carry on her legacy and a name that can be seen right throughout the area.”

The Kāti Mamoe tipuna has a legacy that can be seen throughout Central Otago. The Cecil and Walter Peaks that helped her navigate towards Refuge Point are referred to as Ka Kamu o Hākitekura. The Kawarau Peninsula is known as Te Unuku o Hākitekura.

University of Otago Vice-Chancellor Professor Harlene Hayne says the name of the property perfectly embodies the area and the people who have made the gift to the University.

“Hākitekura was brave and bold. She was strong in both body and spirit. She made her own rules and she took risks. These same qualities describe Dick and Jillian Jardine,” Professor Hayne says.

“We are delighted that the Jardines have chosen the name Hākitekura and we are honoured that mana whenua has granted their wish.

“The University of Otago is extremely proud of our partnership with Ngai Tahu and this name is another manifestation of that very important relationship.”

Dick Jardine says the family is excited about the legacy of the Woolshed Bay property.

“The Hākitekura story is something the family has been interested in for decades, and has helped us feel connected to the land the property sits on,” Mr Jardine says.

“We are absolutely delighted that Ngāi Tahu has agreed to gift us the name of this wonderful tipuna.”

Development continues for site

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (External Engagement) Professor Helen Nicholson says that in November 2017, the University asked three architectural firms to submit proposals for the project.

Queenstown architectural firm Kerr Ritchie was selected to prepare a concept plan for the site – which includes respecting the existing ambiance while converting the current buildings and developing self-contained accommodation units for visiting academics. Kerr Ritchie’s approach to the concept plan appealed to both the University and the Jardines, who are being consulted on all plans for the site.

The University has also set up a project steering committee to govern the process.

Development of the concept design is continuing, and Professor Nicholson says the Business Case for the project should be completed by April and will guide the future.