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A brief History of Waihi Walkways



Nov 1998

6 November. First meeting of steering group, under the facilitation of Tessa Mackenzie. A "Millennium Project" under the "umbrella" of Go Waihi.

1999 Research using maps to identify possible walks, public lands, river reserves, historically significant areas. Mapping and comprehensive database was created, including GPS data for many historic tracks and roads surrounding Waihi.

April 1999

April 6. Walkways group give presentation to the Waihi Ward Committee of the Hauraki District Council. (Tessa Mackenzie's introduction).

May - July 1999 Initial consultation with neighbours of proposed walkways: Mill Stream (initially known as Scout Walkway), Riverbank Terrace, Coffey's, Silverton, Victoria, Ohinemuri River Walk (to Waikino), Waitete, Union Hill and Black Hill walkways.

April 2000

1st Proposal put to HDC to set aside land at the historic Waihi Dredging Plant site as a reserve.

19 April 2000

Inaugural public meeting held on the 19 April 2000.

July 2000

Waihi Walkways becomes an incorporated society on 17 July 2000.

Nov 2000

Riparian plantings established downstream from Rosemont Road, on the Ohinemuri River. Plants donated by Robert Osborne.

Dec 2000

6 December: official opening of Heritage Walkway. Waihi Walkways agrees to name this short section of walkway connecting Gilmour Reserve with Clarke Street.

Dec 2000/Jan 2001

Derek Hayes, a second year environmental architect student, on loan from Environment Waikato, creates proposal plans for two walks, and the Waihi Dredging Plant site at Lawrence Road.

Feb 2001

Walkways secures $25,000 grant from Environment Waikato's Environmental Initiatives fund.

April 2001

Four archaeologists, Rachel Darmody of Historical Places Trust, Phillip Moore, Neville Ritchie and Caroline Phillips visit the Waihi Dredging Plant site. They all recommend that the reserve area be enlarged, believing the site to be historically significant.

May 2001

7 May. 2nd presentation to HDC P & F Committee, to extend reserve area at the Waihi Dredging Plant site, allow option to buy, and allow vehicle access.

Hauraki District Council reject Walkway's request to hold from sale a section adjoining the historic Waihi Dredging Plant site.

June 2001

After 2˝ years as Facilitator/Chairperson, Tessa Mackenzie steps down. Ruth Ordish is our new chairperson.


HELP begins clearance work on Mill Stream Walkway (initially known as Scout Walkway).

Oct 2001

10 October: Planting Day - South Bank, Riverbank Terrace Walkway. Fencing and riparian planting established, using funds made available by Environment Waikato.

Waihi Walkways display at the WEN Volunteer Contribution Expo, War Memorial Hall.


Hauraki District Council fund HELP for clearance work on Union Hill to give improved access to the Cyanide Tanks.

June 2002

18 June, AGM. Ruth Ordish relinquishes Chairperson role. Charlie Cooper is our new Chair.


Alan Berntsen and workmate Bob (experienced DoC track construction workers) construct and metal Mill Stream Walkway.


Dan Bustard builds and installs two bridges across Mill Stream (Eastern Stream).

Early 2004

Kissing Gates installed on Riverbank Terrace Walkway.

April 2004 Discussion document for Ohinemuri River Walk shared with farmer neighbours.

Aug 2004

Engineer Trevor Butler undertakes preliminary survey of the Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway.

Sept 2004

21 September Ruth Ordish donates and plants a Totara tree to honour the late Owen Morgan.

Oct 2004

HELP clear Elaeagnus from end of Rosemont Road, as preliminary to creating Coffey's Walkway.

Nov 2004

Kissing gate installed end of Rosemont Road, as preliminary to creating Coffey's Walkway.

Dec 2004

Waihi Walkways web site goes live.

Mar 2005

Planting plan for Riverbank Terrace and Coffey's Walk donated by local landscape designer.

2004 - 2007

Walkways participates in the WCV (Waihi Community Vision) process, envisioning the future of Waihi for community health, wealth and well-being.

Mar 2005

Enviro Schools project initiated to transform "Paddock" behind Scout Den, currently weed infested.

Jul 2005

Beryl George becomes our new Chairperson.

DoC provides a People Counter which we install in Mill Stream Walkway.

Oct 2005

Family of Charlie Cooper (past Chairperson) sponsor a seat on Mill Stream Walkway cabbage tree flat in his memory.

Jan 2006

Meeting with DoC, Thames Office, re Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway identifies good DoC support, and request to have route cycle friendly. DoC, Thames Office undertake to purchase an area of farmed land adjacent to Victoria Battery site, to complete public land access from Waihi to Waikino.

Feb 2006

Extension to Mill Stream Walkway proposed – from Baker Street upstream to Speak's Quarry at the edge of Morgan Reserve.

  Volunteer is provided training to achieve the Growsafe Certificate of Qualification for competency in applying agrichemicals.

May 2006

Feasibility document for Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway is in draft form and further consultation with landowners is undertaken. Trevor Butler, Frame Group, visits to conduct preliminary engineering discussions re Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway.

June 2006

On site meeting for Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway with many of the stakeholders, Eddie Morrow (VWT), Trevor Butler (Frame), Mike Hayden (HDC), Mark Samson (NWG), Neville Ritchie (DoC archaeologist), Peter Carter (DoC, Thames). All meet with farmer Dennis Orchard at close of visit.

Trevor Butler, engineer, walks almost entire length of Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway for general assessment re engineering and visitor experience. Stakeholders meetings initiated re Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway/cycle route.

July 2006

Mayor John Tregidga indicates strong support for the concept of the Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway.

Aug 2006

Scouts, Cubs and Keas gather with Committee members to plant 180 trees in an area cleared down from the Scout Den.

Oct 2006

Preliminary scouting route cleared along Mill Stream Extension after consultation with landowners, etc.

Nov 2006

On site visit to Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway/cycle route by DoC Conservator, Mayor Tregidga, several other Hauraki District Councillors, and various stakeholders.

Apr 2007

Drew Kenny, Frame Group, surveys preferred route for Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway for purposes of creating a Engineers Concept Design.

Jun 2007

Mill Stream Extension: Hauraki District Council supplies digger to clear rubbish, elaeagnus, and streambed at edge of Morgan Reserve, Newmont also assists.

Jul 2007

First streamside plantings at Totara Flat (Mill Stream Extension) established by volunteers.

Meeting held with farmers group re their concerns re Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway.

Aug - Sept 2007

New track for extension of Mill Stream Walkway is prepared and culverts installed.

Jun - Sept 2007

Many working bees are held during which volunteers plant hundreds of trees, mulch around trees, clear rubbish, effect maintenance, drainage, etc as required on several sites.

Sept 2007

After the weeds have been sprayed and mulched behind Scout Den, renamed Pylon Paddock; plants are established by volunteers and Scouts.

Silverton Walkway stage is initiated with preliminary discussions and project planning

October 2007 Three volunteers attend a Workshop in Governance in Not-for-Profit Organisations provided by Unitec.

Nov 2007

Further clearance of the Mill Stream allows the stream to once again flow freely.

Nov 2007

Mill Stream Walkway extension is completed, from Baker Street through to Morgan Park. It includes a walk through a bamboo stand, and open vistas of "urban wilderness".

Feb 2008

We purchase a Greenfield ride-on mower to enable us to manage and maintain several stretches of walkway.

Mar 2008

Coffey's Walk is made accessible by the mowing regime. Neighbours continue to maintain the Wellington Street end of the walk.

Mar 2008

We purchase a scrub bar to assist and facilitate volunteers with maintenance works.

15 Mar 2008

Waihi Rotarians pitch in at Mill Stream Walkway to assist the maintenance.

Feb – May 2008

Many volunteer hours are invested with mowing, scrub bar work, weeding, mulching, and general maintenance… the walkways are all looking great.

May 2008

Planting season begins, more plants in Pylon Paddock and Totara Flat (Mill Stream Walkway).

Walkways committee holds a special workshop to review and articulate the Values of Waihi Walkways. Vision, Mission Statement and Code of Ethics are also reviewed and refined.

June 2008

Waihi Walkways is first equal award winner for Weedbusting on Public Land at the Bay of Plenty Weedbusters Awards.

  Consultation and design resume for the Silverton Walkway.
July 2008 We purchase a Hansa Chipper.  This enables us to cut and chip our woody weed species, privet, etc, and use the chip as a mulch around our plantings.  A “green” solution to a weed problem.
October 2008 Clearance of major weed problem at the Victoria Street Bridge Reserve is undertaken by Department of Corrections to assist the development of the site for Silverton Walkway.
  Totara grove planted at Victoria Street Reserve.
Winter 2008 Many more plants are planted and mulched on Mill Stream Walkway, Riverbank Terrace Walkway and Coffey’s Walk.
January 2009 Waihi District Walkways Inc becomes registered as a charitable entity under the Charities Act 2005.
  Training is undertaken in Project Management.
  Committee undertakes a workshop in Governance and Management.
March 2009 Waihi Rotarians again contribute effort toward the walkway development with clearance and an initial mow of the Victoria Bridge Reserve area.
April 2009 The first comprehensive mow of Victoria Bridge Reserve defines its perimeter and it becomes a place for the community to visit and enjoy.
July 2009 Goldfields School students and staff joined with volunteers to finish the planting of Pylon Paddock wetland.
  Hauraki District Council form a ramp down to the Victoria Bridge Reserve picnic area.
  The first major planting of Victoria Bridge Reserve takes place – 90 plants specially selected for either side of the ramp.
August 2009 Tauranga Dept of Conservation Manager, Andrew Bauke, volunteers with us to clear and chip the "Privet Patch", Mill Stream Walkway, in anticipation of planting native species later.
September 2009 Hardy native seedlings are planted at the "Privet Patch".
  18 specimen trees are planted at Riverbank Terrace and Victoria Bridge Reserve, contributed by Hauraki District Council.
  Digger smooths the route at Riverbank Terrace, and culverts are installed to make the track easy to walk and mow.
November 2009 Waihi Lions build and install 4 kissing gates for the mid section of Silverton Walkway. Consultation for traversing the route is ongoing.
February 2010 More mulch is delivered to the Victoria Bridge Reserve site to assist with weed suppression and moisture retention.
June-10 Hauraki District Council commits resources to ensuring the Hauraki Cycleway will become a reality. Part of the cycleway will be the former Ohinemuri River Historic Walkway. Waihi Walkways has already provided background research, feasibility, heritage information and an engineering concept plan to the Council for their utilization. This becomes a Hauraki District Council project.
Winter 2010 More seedlings, toetoe, carex, etc are planted at Victoria Bridge Reserve.
Oct 2010 17 interpretation posts are inserted at specific heritage features on Mill Stream Walkway. A brochure is available from the website to enable a self-guided walk.
Nov 2010 Hauraki District Council establishes a small section of metal walkway at the end of Rosemont Road to facilitate access to Coffey’s Walkway.
  Committee workshop to discuss strengthening of the organisation.
Feb 2011 Hauraki District Council establishes bollards and chain to enhance and protect Victoria Bridge Reserve.
Mar 2011 We install entrance way signage for Mill Stream Walkway.
  Brett Wisheart replaces Carol Speir as Chairperson.
Jun 2011 Hauraki District Council establishes bollards and chain along a section of Wellington Street, to enhance and protect Coffey’s Walkway.
Winter 2011 More plants are put in at Victoria Bridge Reserve – renamed Pukeko Park. Infill seedlings are established at various other sites.
Sep 2011 Committee workshop for Strategic Planning.
May 2012 May 29: Goldfields school helps plant more flaxes to extend the Pylon Paddock wetland, Mill Stream Walkway

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Waihi District Walkways Inc. PO Box 241 Waihi New Zealand

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