A warm welcome in Picton fore shore

Plans to mark the milestone 250th anniversary of James Cook’s arrival in Marlborough will rely on the help of the public.

Marlborough mayor John Leggett is asking people to get involved as the countdown to November edges closer.

He is urging people to save-the date and make the most of the “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity.

Marlburians are being encouraged to ‘save the date’ to welcome a national flotilla of tall ships and waka at the centre of national Tuia 250 commemorations.

His words come as the core vessels taking part in the Tuia 250 Voyage, are confirmed.

“We have an incredible natural backdrop in Tōtaranui; Queen Charlotte Sound that promises to be the highlight of the flotilla’s voyage of New Zealand.

“The sight of the waka, va’a and the tall ships representing our dual heritage will be absolutely stunning,” he says.

“I encourage everyone to get involved – let’s give our visitors a warm welcome and show them that Marlborough really is one of the best places on Earth to be.”

The flotilla is due to land on 21 November 2019 as part of a series of ceremonies in tribute to the first meeting between Māori and Europeans in 1769.

The Ministry of Culture and Heritage announced last week that a huge community welcome was planned.

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John says witnessing the arrival of the flotilla, which will be greeted by four local waka tāngata, will be a once-in-a lifetime opportunity and he encouraged the whole community to get involved.

Key vessels include two waka hourua (double-hulled canoes) – the Haunui from Tāmaki Makaurau/Auckland and Ngahiraka Mai Tawhiti from Tauranga – and the Fa’afaite i te Ao Mā’ohi, a va’a moana from Pape’ete, Tahiti.

The heritage vessels joining the flotilla are the HMB Endeavour replica from the Australian National Maritime Museum in Sydney and the Spirit of New Zealand from Tamaki Makaurau/Auckland.


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