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Heritage Fund preserving Waitakere’s past

Media Release

11 March 2010

Heritage Fund preserving Waitakere’s past

Cr Judy Lawley (left) with Fiona Edgar – recipient of a Waitakere City Council Heritage Fund grant to install rain tanks at her historical Henderson home

A book on the history of Titirangi and heritage style water tanks on an historical Henderson property are among the 20 projects to receive grants from the Waitakere City Council Heritage Fund.

A total of $54,000 in grants has been allocated from the 2009-10 fund, which demonstrates the council’s commitment to the ongoing preservation of the west’s precious cultural heritage resources.

“The whole community benefits in the long run by the efforts of those who receive grants for these worthwhile projects,” says chair of the council’s Heritage Fund Allocation Sub-Committee, Judy Lawley.

“These projects play an essential role in improving peoples’ understanding and access to our heritage as well as preserving our history for future generations.”

Fiona Edgar received $5000 to restore the heritage-style water tanks at her Category II heritage home in Henderson which badly burned in a fire in the late 1970s. The two-storey Victorian villa was built in 1893 and was once the family home of internationally renowned botanist Lucy Cranwell.

“I bought the house in 1997 when it was valued for demolition,” says Fiona. “I have always been interested in history so instead of developing the half acre site into townhouses, as my friends suggested, I decided to restore it.

“Some might think it’s a crazy idea as a project like this doesn’t come cheap so it’s fantastic to get some kind of support. It makes a big difference,” she says.

The fund is not just about maintaining bricks and mortar. It also helps with community education projects that preserve the character of the region such as oral histories.

The Waitakere Ranges Protection Society will use its $3000 to develop an oral history documenting the importance of the Waitakere Ranges and the people who have contributed to its preservation. Interviewees will include local personalities Jonathan Hunt, Mayor Bob Harvey, Marianne Simpkins, John Walsh and Dave Harre and will be stored at the Waitakere Central Library.

McCahon House Trust’s $4000 allocation will support the development and promotion of its education programme for schools and tertiary organisations. The money will also help further develop its programmes and raise awareness McCahon House in Titirangi.

The Waitakere Heritage Fund provides owners of heritage buildings and local museums help to restore and appropriately manage their heritage resources. It also aids local marae and owners of heritage trees and archaeological sites.

© Scoop Media

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