Council's new heritage strategy 'best practice'
Published on October 15, 2021
This week Whanganui District Council adopted a heritage strategy for the Whanganui district, which sets out a framework for facilitating, encouraging and managing successful heritage outcomes.
After the strategy was adopted, Councillor Helen Craig thanked everyone who took the time to make a submission and those who “came to the table” to present to councillors in person.
She said for thirty years or more there has been an ongoing commitment to heritage from members of the community.
“Their input has to be acknowledged in getting us exactly where we are today – our very first heritage strategy – fantastic.”
During the hearings Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga spokesperson, Dean Raymond, praised the strategy and said Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga had referred others to Whanganui’s heritage strategy as an example of “best practice”.
“Whanganui is really a fantastic heritage venue and destination and I really think you’re moving in the right direction.”
The council’s heritage advisor, Scott Flutey, says the strategy was developed with input from the community, and views were sought via an online survey, hui, market stalls, workshops and discussions, as well as formal consultation.
Scott Flutey said the council has achieved some real heritage successes in the past few years, “particularly in strengthening for some of its largest built heritage assets”.
“Engagement conversations plus submissions to date have called for the council to commit more intently towards good heritage outcomes, both with the assets it manages and supports and at privately owned sites.
“There is a community desire for the council to be supportive towards repurposing historic buildings, especially as apartments, and to support wider forms of history including telling our stories.”
He said the strategy formalises the council’s commitment to heritage, and contains practical actions which can be implemented across the next five years.