Blessing the new SS Ventnor memorial site in Opononi

A moving dawn ceremony has brought together Te Hua o Te Kawariki Trust, the New Zealand Chinese Association and the Far North District Council to bless the new site of the SS Ventnor memorial. The ceremony took place on on Monday 25 May 2020.

The new site is at the Manea Footprints of Kupe cultural centre, across the road from Opononi beach and looking out towards the Hokianga Heads and beyond, where the SS Ventnor sank in 1902. The cultural centre, which is run by Te Hua o Te Kawariki Trust,  is currently under construction.

“To be welcomed so warmly by the Trust was an honour and a privilege,” said Richard Leung, New Zealand Chinese Association President. “Yesterday was a milestone for our ancestors who were lost on the SS Ventnor, but also for us as descendants, wanting to pass on our culture and heritage to future generations. We look forward to doing that and to celebrating the history we share with all the people of the Hokianga, and especially with Te Roroa, Te Rarawa and Te Mahurehure, and now with Te Hua o Te Kawariki Trust.”