Double celebration at Totara Estate


A double celebration is planned at Totara Estate, just south of Oamaru, on Waitangi Day as the property opens its doors and formally acknowledges recognition of the site as an Otago Landmark Whenua Tohunga.

Totara Estate

Totara Estate is one of 16 Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga properties nationwide celebrating New Zealand’s national day by offering free entry to visit a historic property near them.  Totara Estate will have a copy of the Treaty of Waitangi on display, an exhibition of New Zealand flags and an information sheet on Tapuwae – Heritage New Zealand’s vision for Maori heritage.

In December Totara Estate was one of 12 sites recognised as an Otago Landmark, the programme a joint initiative between the Ministry for Culture and Heritage, Department of Conservation and Heritage New Zealand.  The aim of the Landmarks programme ( is to showcase sites that embody the Otago region’s journey of discovery, prosperity and beauty.

“Waitangi Day really is cause for double celebration,” says Totara Estate Property Lead Anne Sutherland.

“The Waitangi Day initiative was a success last year and it’s an opportunity for people to bring a picnic and learn more about their history and heritage.  We were delighted with the Landmarks recognition given the site is where the first shipment of frozen mutton was sent to England from in 1882.

“There will be volunteers on site giving demonstrations and telling stories about life at Totara Estate over the years.  They will range from swaggers talking about life on the road, a stonemason talking about working with Oamaru stone, a blade shearer shearing sheep and craft working displays.” 

There will be a ceremony at 11am to recognise the Landmarks Whenua Tohunga status, with local dignitaries invited.  Visitors will also be able to see new displays in the Men’s Quarters about domestic life on the farm and the Slaughterhouse, which tells the story of the first shipment of meat to England.

For more information:

Anne Sutherland
Totara Estate Property Lead
tel: (03) 433 1269 or (m) 027 600 7280

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