About Us

Waitangi: a place for all New Zealanders, a place of accord for all peoples. A place standing central to our history as a nation and at the centre of the growth of our nation.

Our vision for Waitangi

2020: A place of relevance for all New Zealanders

New Zealand’s most important historic place

A leading New Zealand tourism destination

A world class visitor experience

All New Zealand children have been to Waitangi

Educating New Zealanders about Waitangi

A sustainable organisation with assets and estate optimised

A model for bicultural development


Waitangi Treaty Grounds Executive Staff

Greg McManus

CEO

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Wallace Te Ahuru

Corporate Services Manager

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Nineke Metz

Sales & Marketing Manager

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Mori Rapana

Cultural Manager

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Tania Burt

Business Development Manager

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Brooke Williams

Commercial Manager

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Monika Kern

Education Manager

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The Waitangi National Trust

The Waitangi Treaty Grounds is part of an estate that comprises 506 hectares. The Waitangi National Trust was set up by Act of Parliament to administer the estate. It’s Deed of Trust, drawn up in 1932, set out the objectives for the Treaty Grounds. These included priority being given to the repair and restoration of the former Residency which, at Lord Bledisloe's request, was now renamed the Treaty House.

On the Trust’s first Board were:

The Board continues to be made up of descendants and representatives of people directly associated with this historic site. The incumbent Governor-General has the right to choose to be Patron of the Trust.


Trust Board Members

Photo of  Pita Paraone

Mr Pita Paraone

Chairman (1997)

Appointed by the Leader of the Opposition to represent the opposition in Parliament.

Photo of  David Jefferd

Mr David Jefferd

(2006)

A representative of the late James Busby.

Photo of  Tumu Te Heuheu

Sir Dr. Tumu Te Heuheu

(1996)

A representative of the Māori people living in the North Island south of the city of Auckland.

Photo of  Dennis McBrearty

Mr Dennis McBrearty

Deputy Chairman (2013)

A representative of the Pākeha people living in the Bay of Islands district.

Photo of  Kate Wilkinson

Ms Kate Wilkinson

(2014)

A representative of the people, Pākeha and Māori, living in the South Island.

Photo of  Stu Graham

Mr Stu Graham

(2009)

A representative of the family of the late Edward Gibbon Wakefield.

Photo of  Don McKinnon

Sir Don McKinnon

(2010)

A person prominent in the life of the country as a statesman.

Photo of  Peeni Henare

Mr Peeni Henare

(2015)

A representative of the Māori people living in the North Auckland peninsula.

Photo of  Tutehounuku Korako

Mr Tutehounuku Korako

(2016)

Appointed by the Prime Minister to represent the Government.

Photo of  Jane  Fletcher

Ms Jane Fletcher

(2016)

A member of the Archdeacon Henry Williams family.

Photo of  Mita  Harris

Mr Mita Harris

(2016)

A member of the family of Tamati Waka Nene.

Photo of  Wiremu Puriri

Mr Wiremu Puriri

(2016)

A member of the family of Hone Heke.

Photo of  Pita  Tipene

Mr Pita Tipene

(2016)

A member of the family of Maihi Kawiti.


As kaitiaki (guardians) the Waitangi National Trust Board takes reponsibility to:


The values that underpin our work

The Waitangi Trust Board, through its internal and external relationships, will support the two partners of the Treaty working together through interactions that are:

Honest operating through an understanding of good faith in all dealings

Responsive to stakeholders’ needs

Reliable by using sound process

Respectful of all cultures, acknowledging the two Treaty partners

Informative by providing information that is relevant and historically accurate

Constructive in providing a forum for positive debate about the Treaty

Ethical operating in accordance with established standards and current legislation


The Treaty Grounds Founding: the Bledisloe Gift

After the signing of the Treaty in 1840 the Treaty House remained the property of the Busby family. The house and surrounding estate was sold in 1882 by Agnes Busby, ten years after her husbands’ death. Over the years, the Waitangi estate gradually declined, becoming a typical piece of New Zealand marginal farmland. Only Māori, it seemed, remembered the significance of the place. In 1878 members of local tribes petitioned the government to help them set up a commemorative meeting house, but the government refused.

In the early 20th century, local MP and lawyer Vernon Reed took up the cause for greater appreciation of Waitangi as an important site for all New Zealanders. He had many knockbacks, but in 1932, when the Governor-General and his wife, Lord and Lady Bledisloe, were holidaying in the Bay of Islands Reed encouraged them to visit Waitangi and see this historic place for themselves. The Bledisloes were enchanted by the site and, convinced that New Zealanders should appreciate its significance, they arranged to buy the estate.

On 10 May 1932, following this visit, Lord Bledisloe informed the Prime Minister George Forbes by letter: ‘I desire formally, on behalf of Her Excellency and myself, to present, through you, to the nation, New Zealand's most historic spot “Waitangi” together with 1000 acres of land belonging to the estate of which it forms part and which we have recently purchased with this object.’

Lord Bledisloe formally gifted Waitangi to the nation at a hui attended by thousands on 6 February 1934 – the first ‘Waitangi Day’, New Zealand’s national day.

Te Whare Rūnanga: The cave of Maikuku, the guardian of the waters of Waitangi.

Ngātokimatawhaorua: Ceremonial War Canoe.

Hui: To gather, congregate, assemble, meet.


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