Preserving old pā sites with new technology on the East Cape


An East Cape hapū is using intergenerational knowledge, coupled with laser sensor technology, to preserve sites of significance.

The physical remnants of many wāhi tapu across the motu don’t tell the story of what that land once was. To the unknowing eye, these sites of significance can look like any other mound, hollow or ditch. 

It is the oral history connected to these places that tells the full story. Te Whānau a Hunaara, a hapū on the East Cape, is keeping that history alive by culturally mapping its whenua. They are not only documenting these places of significance digitally but sharing the oral history through the project Ngā Tapuwae. 

Orchestrated by hapū members Michelle Wanoa and Hal Hovell, with support from Pouhere Taonga archaeologists Pam Bain and Danielle Trilford, the project is aimed at ensuring local mātauranga, kōrero, whakapapa, tikanga and kawa are preserved. The hapū received funding earlier this year from the…

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