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Endeavour for Uawa: model to be erected in vicinity of wharf

The fate of one of two recently-built Endeavour models has been resolved.

The Gisborne District Council-funded model, gifted to Te Aitanga-a-Hauiti iwi, will be erected at Tolaga Bay in the vicinity of the wharf.

Council community assets and resources manager Laird Kennedy said Te Aitanga-a-Hauiti had chosen a preferred site near the wharf.

“We’re working with Te Aitanga-a-Hauiti on next steps for the model.

The council was working with consultants to progress resource consent and pole and foundation designs, he said.

After the two models were built at a cost of $20,000 each, it was discovered the existing poles were not strong enough for the Endeavours, which are made of aluminium and each weigh

200 kilograms.

New poles will cost $29,000.

Asked by The Herald for more details, Te Aitanga-a-Hauiti Iwi, through their Facebook page, said they would provide more information “in due course”.

The Uawa/Tolaga Bay community expressed support for having one of the models during public consultations held by the council after councillors rescinded their original decision to erect the models in Gisborne, where the original two models had stood for most of the previous 50 years since the Cook Bicentenary in 1969.

An original council decision in 2020 was severely criticised and received prominent coverage in the national media.

While the lack of public consultation was one issue, many Maori see the models as symbolising colonialism and racism.

But the majority of public submissions favoured the installation of the new models in the city.

Tolaga Bay Area School principal Nori Parata, in her submission, offered a place for one of the models in Uawa.

In spring 1769, their leaders chose to manaaki Captain James Cook, his men, Tupaia and the Endeavour, and in 2019, they chose to do the same for the Tuia 250 flotilla, including the Endeavour replica, she said.

James Cook’s visit to Uawa in October 1769 did not result in instances of violence and the death of Maori as happened earlier when Endeavour arrived at the site of modern-day Gisborne.

Malcolm MacLean, one of the organisers of the campaign to raise $20,000 for a second Endeavour model, said the group had no issue with one Endeavour model going to Uawa.

“When installed, it will attract visitors as this is an important part of local history,” he said.

The council gifted the second Endeavour back to the fundraising group after Tairawhiti Museum and East Coast Museum of Technology declined to accept it.

Mr MacLean said progress on finding a location for the second model was “moving slowly but positively”.

He previously told The Herald that discussions were being held with the owners of a privately-owned location.

One of the two Endeavour models, which have caused public debate over their presence in Gisborne, will be erected at Tolaga Bay. Gisborne Herald file picture

  1. M. Hills, Tauranga says:

    As a result of the new Endeavour models not going back in their original positions, something clearly the majority of submitters wanted, I will never again contribute to another Gisborne project.

  2. Chase Matete says:

    Not a great idea at all, enough said . . . stop looking for places to put this evil land-taking boat model and plastering it anywhere you want. It carries a nasty history – leave it down.