Members of the Southern Heritage Trust enjoyed a guided tour of the Dunedin Town Belt with Society member Paul Pope on Sunday 2nd of March. The 5.2 kilometre walk from Unity Park to the Clear at Prospect Park was an opportunity to view and discuss historic areas of the Town Belt and its environs and their importance to the history of Dunedin. The group viewed:
- The old High Street school important to Society co-founder Alexander Bathgate’s foundation of Arbor Day in NZ.
- Jubilee Park – an important area for the foundation of the Society, temporary mining camp and site of the stream Toitu.
- The construction of Maori Road
- The tramway through Robin Hood Park
- Dunedin’s first cemetery at York Place/Arthur Street, the use of the area for barracks and an asylum
- The site of Sir John Roberts house at Roberts Park above Moana Pool
- The influence of Thomson on the area of the Town Belt around Olveston
- The Clear at Prospect Park and the memorial to the poet Charles Brasch
The Society and the Southern Heritage Trust have a great deal in common and on a fine autumn morning the walk was a great opportunity to connect and discuss area’s of historical and heritage interest. It’s positive to see other groups in Dunedin share the Society’s belief that the Town Belt is not only a unique landscape and biodiversity area but an important historic and heritage area.