At the break of dawn, on Monday 12 November, Te Ātiawa led a ceremony to lay a mouri stone beneath the ground of the new Ricoh Sports Centre at Fraser Park.
Kura Moeahu of Te Ātiawa Iwi said, “This ceremony binds the mouri to the earth, asking it to connect itself to this building and imbues the mouri with all its life force to protect it.”
The mouri stone laid this morning was sourced from the Te Rere Kapuni waterfall in Taranaki, by Kura. These falls are a place of special significance to the ancestors of Te Ātiawa and the ceremonial laying of this stone, named Te Aio, meaning tranquillity, peace, calm, is significant as it gives life to the Ricoh Sports Centre.
Mayor Ray Wallace said, “Today represents nine years of collaboration between many partners and reflects the community’s spirit coming together to give a home to local clubs.”
The ceremony was attended by Lower Hutt Mayor Ray Wallace, Hutt City Council representatives, Community Facilities Trust and Fraser Park Sportsville board members and staff, club members, sponsors and contractors.
The new facility will be the home of Lower Hutt’s first ‘sportsville’ – a concept that brings sports groups together to share facilities and collaborate to both retain their members and attract new ones. The facility, which opens for business in early 2019, includes six squash courts, an indoor training space, administration offices, meeting rooms and changing rooms and a café.