Clear vote of 'no' to Tairawhiti as a name for Gisborne district

Majority of voters against the idea.

Majority of voters against the idea.

The majority of voters responding to the Gisborne Herald webpoll this week have said they would not support a dual application to the New Zealand Geographic Board for Tairawhiti to be officially recognised as a name for the Gisborne District.

A total of 392, or 71 percent of the 550 total votes, were against the idea — which is not something the council has promoted.

There were 147 votes, or 27 percent, that did support official recognition of the commonly-used Maori name for the district, and 11 voters or 2 percent who did not know.

Some were vehemently opposed, with one saying, “wear the name with pride and focus on the real problems”.

“It is tragic that the council and the Mayor want to wipe out the bay’s history and re-write it as they see fit. I thought enough people had died for this lesson to have been learned, but clearly not.”

Another “no voter” said the public consultation told the council what the public wanted, which was quite different to how the council voted.

“It’s just another example of the Mayor wanting his own way,” said another.

Sign reinstatement wanted by one voter

One voter wanted reinstatement of the “Welcome to Gisborne” sign at the beginning of Gladstone Road.

“Who agreed for this to happen? What is happening in this town? Is all this name-changing activity a ploy to take attention away from the things that should be occurring? We can only hope the New Zealand Geographic Board uses some common sense, because it seems that our representatives have lost theirs.”

Another respondent opposed to “name changes” said, “our Mayor and his cronies are on a mission to wipe out everything to do with colonisation”.

Of the 27 percent who wanted official recognition of Tairawhiti, one said a dual name would be respectful and a compromise for all cultures.

The Gisborne district had a Maori name when Captain Cook came here, they said.

“By rights, he should have entered that name on his map. Just because he changed it, doesn’t make it right. Imagine someone coming here today and taking possession of our land. Would we be happy if they decided to call the district Alabama?”

Another who wanted Tairawhiti officially recognised said it must cover the whole of the East Coast: “You do know that’s what Tairawhiti means — it’s not just Gisborne.”

An opponent of official recognition pointed out that Tairawhiti was the traditional name for the area all the way south to the Mohaka River, encompassing the Wairoa District.

The majority of voters responding to the Gisborne Herald webpoll this week have said they would not support a dual application to the New Zealand Geographic Board for Tairawhiti to be officially recognised as a name for the Gisborne District.

A total of 392, or 71 percent of the 550 total votes, were against the idea — which is not something the council has promoted.

There were 147 votes, or 27 percent, that did support official recognition of the commonly-used Maori name for the district, and 11 voters or 2 percent who did not know.

Some were vehemently opposed, with one saying, “wear the name with pride and focus on the real problems”.

“It is tragic that the council and the Mayor want to wipe out the bay’s history and re-write it as they see fit. I thought enough people had died for this lesson to have been learned, but clearly not.”

Another “no voter” said the public consultation told the council what the public wanted, which was quite different to how the council voted.

“It’s just another example of the Mayor wanting his own way,” said another.

Sign reinstatement wanted by one voter

One voter wanted reinstatement of the “Welcome to Gisborne” sign at the beginning of Gladstone Road.

“Who agreed for this to happen? What is happening in this town? Is all this name-changing activity a ploy to take attention away from the things that should be occurring? We can only hope the New Zealand Geographic Board uses some common sense, because it seems that our representatives have lost theirs.”

Another respondent opposed to “name changes” said, “our Mayor and his cronies are on a mission to wipe out everything to do with colonisation”.

Of the 27 percent who wanted official recognition of Tairawhiti, one said a dual name would be respectful and a compromise for all cultures.

The Gisborne district had a Maori name when Captain Cook came here, they said.

“By rights, he should have entered that name on his map. Just because he changed it, doesn’t make it right. Imagine someone coming here today and taking possession of our land. Would we be happy if they decided to call the district Alabama?”

Another who wanted Tairawhiti officially recognised said it must cover the whole of the East Coast: “You do know that’s what Tairawhiti means — it’s not just Gisborne.”

An opponent of official recognition pointed out that Tairawhiti was the traditional name for the area all the way south to the Mohaka River, encompassing the Wairoa District.

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William Hukarere Haua, Brisbane - 5 months ago
Why should we rename our district? Our district had a name prior to captain James Cook arriving here. Why the hell did he change it in the first place?
I was under the impression he was unhappy that our district failed to provide his expedition with necessary provisions. We had provisions that kept us healthy.
East Coast, Tairawhiti - that's a whole lot better than Poverty Bay, the name he gave us. Tairawhiti incorporates all towns and constituents of the East Coast including Gisborne.
The rural towns pay rates to Gisborne District Council for services it does not provide such as water supply, sewerage, rubbish collection etc. Perhaps the real Tairawhiti is financing Poverty Bay.

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