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Draft Keirunga Gardens Management Plan

The Draft Keirunga Gardens Management Plan was notified for public comment on 17 October 2020.  Submissions close on Friday 18 December 2020.    

The Draft Plan has been prepared following extensive community consultation, including open days, and feedback from over 200 members of the community.  The Draft Plan identifies Council’s intentions for the future use, management, development and protection of the Gardens, over the next 10 years.

Keirunga Gardens, covering 7.9 hectares of land, is categorised as a “Public Garden” in the Operative Hastings District Plan.  The Gardens have a strong cultural heritage; since its gift to the people of Havelock North Borough Council the Heritage II scheduled buildings, together with the Arts Centre built in the 1980s, have been a centre of arts and crafts for the district.  This has reflected the importance of the Homestead and land, through its owners Thomas and Ruth Gardiner, in cultural movements in Hawke’s Bay in the early 20th century.  The mature oak trees along Arthur’s Path on the western side of the park create a much valued woodland and, since the 1990s, the Gardens have also been home to the Havelock North Live Steamers who built and operate Keirunga Park Railway.

The role of Council is to ensure that the Gardens are available for the whole community and visitors to use and enjoy, understand and enhance the visitor experience and sense of place, provide the best possible facilities and services, and protect those features which make it unique.

The Draft Management Plan has taken into account all the identified issues from research and consultation, with the vision for ‘The protection, management and enhancement of the natural, historic, cultural and artistic values of Keirunga Gardens’.  The key goals are:

  • The Gardens are well used by the community for a range of activities encouraging them to visit more often and stay longer.
  • The Gardens are developed to ensure they are safe and accessible and that facilities meet the needs of people of all ages, abilities and interests.
  • The landscape, open space values and natural heritage character are recognised and protected.
  • The Gardens are rich in cultural and natural heritage.  The landscape character and heritage features will be recognised, protected and preserved for future generations.
  • The Gardens are managed and maintained to meet community needs and aspirations.

A Draft Concept Plan that identifies future actions and priorities is included in the Draft Management Plan, which includes investment in the following:

  • Recognition, restoration, upgrade and enhancement of the heritage buildings and their gardens, including built and natural landscape features.
  • Provision of an enhanced children’s playground.
  • New toilet facilities beside the children’s playground.
  • Upgrade of the main carpark to optimise parking and provide additional lighting for safety and amenity.
  • Closure of the existing exit and service roads to provide pedestrian access into the heart of the Gardens, and two way access/egress at the main entrance to provide a safer exit for vehicles.
  • Enhancement of the three entrances and additional amenities and parking at the northern end of the Gardens.
  • Protection of the mature oak woodland including enhanced maintenance programme.
  • New tracks and upgrade of existing tracks to improve access, including a 1km loop track around the Gardens.

The community now has the opportunity to make formal submissions in support of this plan, or to oppose any part of it. Submitters will have the opportunity to present their submission in person to Council, at a hearing that will be scheduled in early 2021.

Make a submission

Submissions can be made online using the form below or you can download a copy of the submission form here.

Open Days

Officers will also be available at Keirunga Gardens for two open days to discuss the Draft Plan, and any questions or concerns you may have:

  • On Wednesday 28 October from 5pm-7pm at the Homestead and Cottage (behind the Arts Centre); and
  • On Sunday 1 November from 11am–1pm beside the children’s playground.

In conjunction with the Open Day on Wednesday 28 October we invite you to attend a public talk by Matthews and Matthews Architects and John Adam, Landscape Historian, who have compiled a Conservation Plan for the heritage area of the Gardens.

We look forward to your comments on these exciting plans for Keirunga Gardens.

Consultation closed

18 December 2020, 11:59pm

Hastings District Council
207 Lyndon Road East, Hastings 4122
Private Bag 9002, Hastings 4156
Phone: +64 6 871 5000
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