Carved pou at Tautahi marriage site to be blessed
10 August 2005
A ceremony will be at 6am tomorrow (11 August) to bless the site where three carved pou (poles) are to be unveiled on Cambridge Green, marking a place where it is believed the great Ngai Tahu chief Tautahi was married.
Chief Tautahi, after whom the Maori originally called the area of Christchurch Otautahi (of Tautahi), had a huge settlement on the Avon River including this area. The site on Barbadoes Street - south of the Barbadoes Cemetery near the corner of Salisbury Street - was chosen for its major significance to Ngai Tahu.
Reverend Maurice Gray Upoko (Chairman) of Te Runaka Ki Otautahi, of Ngai Tahu, will bless the three pou which signify three waves of migration to Christchurch. The works were a major collaborative effort to provide a community art work best suited to the area.
The original commission came from Hagley-Ferrymead Community Board for carver George Edwards. The concrete plinths that the pou are mounted on were the collective work of the Council’s City Solutions Unit, which developed the plinths, and the Community and Recreation Unit, which developed the Maori designs on the plinths. All this was done in consultation with The Rev Gray.
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