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The lights are off, the security is in place and the taonga in Te Kōngahu are having a good rest. Exposure to light causes damage to pretty much anything that is not made of stone, and the effects are cumulative. You may have noticed on your visits that the lighting in the galleries is pretty low – the lower the light, the longer things can be on display. For all of the taonga that have been in our permanent exhibition Ko Waitangi Tēnei: This is Waitangi, since we opened, has had four years of constant light exposure – so the rest is well deserved.

Te Rau Aroha contributions

Since the opening of Te Rau Aroha with The Price of Citizenship exhibition in February, people have been taking advantage of the ability to contribute information in the memorial gallery. While we are closed, we are working on updating information that has been provided by whānau and friends on the soldiers. This includes identifying portraits, correcting us on our spelling, and offering us new taonga to display. People have been very apologetic when they tell us we have spelt a name wrong – don’t be! We sourced a lot of our information from the New Zealand Defence Force and the Online Cenotaph so any corrections that are made can be passed onto the official records. Remember, some of the soldiers had misspelt names on their records, enlisted under a different name, or lied about their ages so they could enlist, so the official records are not always correct. This is our opportunity to correct them. If you have information on anyone featured in the museum, email terauaroha@waitangi.org.nz.