Today there is some big news!
The Minister of Conservation, Kate Wilkinson came to Ngunguru at 10 am this morning to announce that the government has completed negotiations with Landco (formerly Todd Property) and that the Ngunguru Sandspit is now in the hands of the Department of Conservation.
A crowd gathered at Ngunguru, following a letter from Phil Heatley, to welcome the Minister. Some of us had an idea that this might be “IT” – the announcement we have been waiting for and working for all these years. So we did our best to get others along to “meet the minister” at short notice. We’ll have some photos for you soon.
The deal has secured almost all of the sandspit.
I’d like to thank you for all your support throughout this long campaign, we couldn’t have kept working for this result without your help. Just being able to back up our arguments and submissions with “over 600 friends around New Zealand and the world” has helped.
It’s not a complete “victory” as Whakairiora mountain remains in the ownership of a development company but, for today. it is a brilliant result for te whenua and for all of us who care about keeping our coastal environment beautiful and available to future generations.
What’s next? Three things/e toru nga mea:
- we will work with Tangata Whenua and with DOC to create the kind of Trust that can care for the sandspit and keep it safe
- we will step into a new community venture to clear pests and noxious weeds and start the business of restoration
- we will begin a new campaign to secure Whakairiora mountain.
So, wherever you are in the world, please take a moment to pat yourselves on the back for being a part of this long campaign to save Ngunguru sandspit, a moment to celebrate with us. We look forward to seeing you, one day soon, here in Ngunguru to celebrate with you in person. Thank-you, Arohanui.