Annual Reports

Annual Report for the year ended 31 March 2011

This has been another excellent year for the Trust.  Our finances show income for the year of $202,091.  In the last seven years we have raised around $550,000 for the purposes of conservation of historic cemeteries. Our administration expenses are minimal and we still have $151,210 unexpended, including $15,000 for the Chinese Graves Project in Dunedin’s Southern Cemetery, and $70,874 for Larnach’s Tomb in the Northern Cemetery.

This has remained relatively constant and we thank all those who continue to support us.

Glenore Cemetery, South Otago (from Alan Williams)
“Work at the Cemetery has slowed over the last 6 months as we have been playing politics with Community Probation Services (long story) and the summer weather didn’t help.
The Cemetery has got the priority for any CPS crews we get through the winter and I contacted the council yesterday in regard to allowing a walking track from the old yards to the Cemetery and requesting they contact the Meijers, waiting on reply.
Fulton Hogan have been logging out of one of their blocks so have put rock in front of the old yards for truck access which will make a good parking area.”

Cemetery Tours
Tours were held as follows:
14 April 2010 - Dunedin South Probus Club - Northern
20 March 2011 - Dunedin Heritage Week - Southern

School Liaison
14 May 2010 - Bayfield High School 7th Form - SH talk to class
1 June 2010 - Bayfield High School 7th Form - practical class-work at cemetery

Standing up headstones
This work continues in Dunedin’s Northern and Southern Cemeteries with grants from various charities.

Headstone Photography Project with Dunedin City Council
The photographing of every headstone in Dunedin’s Southern Cemetery is well advanced.  All the early difficulties encountered have been solved and it just remains to finish off the photography. This will take some time yet because of the number of gravesites and the shortage of photographers.

Chinese Graves Southern Cemetery
Stage 3, has been quoted and further funding of $15,000 has been granted from the Chinese Poll Tax Heritage Trust.  They have asked us to apply to their next funding round if we need further funds to complete the project.

Larnach’s Tomb
The stonemason Marcus Wainwright has finished a multitude of repair and conservation work to the stone of the façade and window traceries, and what a difference in appearance of the structure.  It no longer looks neglected.  The stained glass has been imported and the glass artwork is progressing in the studio of Peter McKenzie.  The security system is installed and working, as are the floodlights, and the doors are hung too.  It is planned to have the project completed by the end of July 2011.

Morgue Conservation Plan
We have in hand $1,000 granted by The Dunedin Casino Trust which is held towards the cost of this project, leaving a further $7,000 to be raised.

Speaking Engagements
14 April 2010 - Green Island Probus Ladies

Our occasional Newsletters continue to be well-received.  They are a very good way of keeping everyone in touch with what is happening in the world of cemetery conservation.
The Newsletter goes to almost 50 bodies responsible for the care and maintenance of cemeteries and approximately 280 interested individuals the length and breadth of New Zealand.

‘Stories in Stone’
Our column in each Saturday’s Otago Daily Times continues to attract much favourable comment and a wide readership.

Working Parties
2 July 2010 - Anderson Bay - Kings High Pupils
7 August 2010 - Northern - Friends Group pilot
5 September 2010 - Northern - Friends Group pilot
2 October 2010 - Northern - Friends Group pilot
7 November 2010 - Northern - Friends Group pilot
6 March 2011 - Northern - Friends Group pilot
26 March 2011 - Northern - Friends Group pilot

Community Employment Initiative - Task Force Green - one worker
14 March 2011 - 16 weeks commenced funded by Otago Community Trust

The cause of cemetery conservation took a major blow with the two recent earthquakes in Christchurch.  Much repaired work was undone and a considerable amount of new damage caused in Linwood, Addington, Woolston, Lyttleton and Kaiapoi cemeteries.

Mount Street Catholic Cemetery
The Friends group under the leadership of Karen Adair continue to bring energy and enthusiasm to the conservation of this historically important graveyard.

It has been another very busy year with Larnach’s Tomb being our major project, and with conservation enquiries coming in regularly from all over New Zealand. 

I extend my thanks to my trustees and management board, and also to Dunedin City Council Councillors, Alan Matchett, Team Leader, Botanic Gardens and Cemeteries, and Cemeteries staff, for their support and help in so many ways.
The local office of the New Zealand Historic Places Trust has also been very supportive as usual.

Historic cemeteries are now seen as increasingly important to the spirit, life, economy, and sense of history of their local community.  They have become valued parts of the fabric of local history and their conservation is a way to recognize contributions made by earlier generations.

Stewart Harvey
Chairman, 6 May 2011