In 1986, some very clever people from Nelson had several problems to solve. Some old historical buildings had to be saved and to do this, they had to be moved to somewhere safe. The other problem was what to do with an old reclaimed tip area. So the clever people fixed up the tip area to be reasonably presentable and stuck the buildings on it. A trust was formed backed by the council and the momentum to create the Founders Heritage Park was all on.
Click on the Images for Hi Res
With help coming from all corners of the community and a lot of local businesses, this is a stunning collection of Heritage buildings and historical artefacts from in and around Nelson. Think of a smaller version of Auckland’s Museum of Transport and Technology.
Some very nearly didn’t make it with some terrible stories of buildings nearly falling of trucks on the way to the museum.
We visited the park on a day when it was pouring with rain but it was really the only time we had left in Nelson to do it.
With 30 odd buildings from a church to Schools, a railway station and many local shops rescued from Trafalgar street in Nelson as new buildings were built.
There was even a Bristol Freighter which was good to see as Fiona spent 3 years or so in Malaya at a British and New Zealand Military Camp. When she returned, she came back with her parents and younger brother and sister in a Bristol Freighter. As they are unpressurised, they could only fly at 300 feet and it took 3 days to get from Malaya to New Zealand via Darwin and Sydney, with frozen sandwiches as meals :-).
This was Fiona’s first look inside one of these planes since that trip as an 8 year old so it was a bit special.
I was amazed by how small it was inside. I used to watch them take off from Wellington Airport from my grandparents place up on the hill in Melrose, Wellington. As a grasshopper, I always thought they were huge !
After having a good look around the plane, we checked out the rest of the village. One of the interesting things there was a replica of Sir Ernest Rutherford’s house as a child.
There is so much other stuff to see at the park, I’ll let the Gallery below do the talking.
Click on the Gallery below to see a Slideshow
We took shelter from the rain after that and had a nice cup of coffee and a really nice cake and scone at the onsite café.
Its a fabulous place and well done to those involved in rescuing these lovely old buildings and finding somewhere great to put them.
Its only $7 per adult and there is great parking for motorhomes there too. Next time you’re in Nelson, check it out.