Friends of Waitangi membership soars
22 April 2016
Friends of Waitangi membership has climbed to 3,500, a 75% increase in members compared to January 2016, before the opening of the new Museum of Waitangi. 90% of card holders are from Far North District with significant numbers also from Whangarei and other parts of Northland.
The Friends of Waitangi scheme was introduced in October 2014 with Far North Mayor John Carter the first person to receive a membership card. Other prominent members include Prime Minister John Key and Minister of Culture and Heritage Maggie Barry. The card entitles the holder to free admission, guided tours and cultural performances, discounts at Whare Waka Café and the Waitangi retail shop. Friends receive a quarterly newsletter and early notices to inform them about new museum exhibitions and public programmes held at the Waitangi Treaty Grounds. A Friends of Waitangi preview function was held at the new Museum of Waitangi in February, attracting nearly 200 members.
Waitangi National Trust, Chief Executive, Greg McManus says: “I am thrilled with the growth of the Friends of Waitangi programme, it has far exceeded our expectations. Every Friends member becomes an ambassador for Waitangi and we are grateful for their support. I look forward to rolling out more and more benefits for our Friends over the coming years and growing the membership even further”.
The new Museum of Waitangi was officially opened on 5th February by the Governor-General Sir Jerry Mataparae. The state of the art, architecturally designed museum and education centre is the cornerstone of a $14 million redevelopment programme at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, funded with help from the Lottery Grants Board’s Significant Project Fund, Lottery Environment and Heritage, Foundation North (formerly ASB Community Trust), the Ministry for Culture and Heritage and the Waitangi National Trust.