Annual Reports

Trustees’ Annual Report for the year ended 31 March 2015

This has been a reasonably satisfactory year for the Trust. Our finances show income for the year of $7,298

Our income is well down on previous years because we have not undertaken any major restoration works.

Legal Framework for Burial & Cremation in New Zealand, A First Principles Review, Law Commission, October 2013
We made a lengthy submission to this review, and met with Wayne Mapp and the Commission officers in Dunedin on 28 November 2013. We await the next round of consultations.

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

Cemetery Tours
No tours were offered this year.

School Liaison
There has been no further activity in this field in this year..

Friends Groups for Northern and Southern Cemeteries
In spite of trustees agreeing to establish these two groups, no real progress has been made so far.

National Conference
We are hosting a national conference on War Memorialisation and the Nation from Wednesday 19 November to Saturday 22 November, 2014, at the St David’s Street lecture theatre complex, University of Otago which drew some 40 participants from around New Zealand and Australia..

Standing up headstones and removing trees
The gravesite of Charles Kettle, surveyor was restored with funds raised from Bendigo Valley Foundation and students of the School of Surveying, University of Otago, and the Coastal Otago branch of NZ Institute of Surveyors,

A replacement large cross on W H Reynolds’ grave was carved and installed by Marcus Wainwright and funded from our own reserves.

Jewish Section Southern Cemetery suffered vandalism in February 2015. Three headstones were smashed and a swastika painted on another. The offending swastika has been removed but we await a price from Dunedin Monumental Masons to reinstate the broken stone. Some funds have already been promised to assist this work.

Headstone Photography Project with Dunedin City Council
The photographing of every headstone in Dunedin’s Southern Cemetery has been completed and uploaded to DCC website. Thanks are due to Don Warrington for this major achievement.

Larnach’s Tomb
Access entitlements to the tomb have been a source of angst between us and DCC which was finally been brought to a head when DCC installed their own key to the tomb doors. Believing that we held the prime entitlement to control tomb access we tried negotiating with DCC but they have now allowed other parties to gain access the tomb. It remains to be seen how this will impact on the integrity of the tomb and its conservation.

Morgue Conservation Plan

There has been no progress on this conservation project since March 2011, but we have in hand $1,000 granted by The Dunedin Casino Trust which is held towards the cost of a Conservation Plan. A viable reason, a purpose, for its restoration, is still needed.

Speaking Engagements
There have been no speaking engagements in this year.

Our occasional Newsletters have become very occasional.

Working Parties
There have been no working parties in this year.

Our website continues to provide a wealth of information on cemetery conservation and the activities of the trust, and forms a valuable resource and information reference for many people from throughout New Zealand.

It is presently being enhanced by the uploading of our Stories in Stone series of articles which originally appeared weekly in the Otago Daily Times over the last 3 years.

It has been a quiet year, with few conservation enquiries, but we believe that our role as the independent authoritative body for conservation of headstones and graveyards is still seen as being very necessary.

This is my last Annual Report as I am stepping down from the trust for health reasons. I extend my thanks to my trustees and secretary.

Stewart Harvey
Chairman, 21 May 2015