Saturday, 6 June 2015


Bushy Park Sanctuary,situated 20kms north of Wanganui,N.Z.,with its historic homestead, 91ha native lowland forest and wetlands is one of the regions hidden gems.Indigenous wetlands are one of the most seriously threatened habit types across the whole of N.Z.,with less than 2% of original wetlands remaining.Bushy Park Trust and The Rotary Club of Wanganui North recognised this by forming a partnership late 2013 to develop and extend the Parks wetlands.


The Bushy Park wetlands is fast becoming an important facility for school groups to use as an outdoor classroom.The wetlands is home to rare native plants,gecko,frogs and freshwater creatures.An abundance of insect life infiltrates the wetland area providing further food sources for increasing numbers of bird species including fantails,robins,kingfisher,kereru,hihi,bellbirds,tui and falcon.


With assistance from a Bushy Park Trustee Wilf Emmett and his machinery, this $35,000 plus project included……


ROTARY NORTH BOARDWALK.New forest tracks lead down to the wetlands from the homestead.Thanks to the overwhelming generosity of Wanganui businesses and individuals sponsoring $55 named planks, the 90m boardwalk and its jetties have been fully funded.The boardwalk weaves across the wetland giving visitors an uninterrupted view of this beautiful tranquil area,surrounded with its native bush landscape reflecting in the water.The boardwalk is linked to the amphitheatre.


ROTARY NORTH AMPHITHEATRE,has been funded by the Rotary Club of Wanganui North raising funds through a raffle and a matching grant from District 9940.The 60 seater amphitheatre is roofed to provide shelter and with its stunning views across the wetland will be used as an outdoor classroom for the many school groups visiting Bushy Park.A shed has been erected for storing equipment used in observing the many water creatures in the pond.


NATIVE PLANTING. With advice from a local native plant expert and generous funding from The Eleanor Burgess Trust and the Wanganui Beautifying Society, 2000 native plants purchased from the Department of Corrections Wanganui nursery, were planted.


INTERPRETATIVE SIGNAGE has been erected giving information on the wetlands floira,fauna,birdlife and water creatures.


                                            WETLAND OPENING

Official Opening, from left to Right.
Liz Tennet, Chairperson Bushy Park Trust
John Maihi, Kaumatua
Annette Main, Mayor of Wanganui
The Governor General’s Aide de Camp
The Governor General, Sir Jerry Mateparae
Rotary North President, Iain Macleod (speaker)
With stalls,entertainment,vintage car display,and 100,s of people in attendance His Excellency Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae GNZM,QSO, Governor-General of NZ, formally opened the Wetland Project on Saturday 23rd May 2015. Offical guests also included Wanganui Mayor Annette Main and Rotary District 9940 Governor Anthony Scott.


ROTARY CAMARADERIE.  100,s of hours of fund raising and working bees over many months has given the members of the Rotary Club of Wanganui North a new focus and togetherness.As one member said…”The working bees are what I enjoy and what Rotary is all about.”


TO ALL ROTARIANS AND FRIENDS.  If you are in the Wanganui area please take time to visit Bushy Park,791 Rangitatau East Rd, Kai Iwi. Its homestead,native forest,bird life and now its developed wetland is something very special,and a must see in the Wanganui Region.


Iain Macleod                                            Cranleigh Chainey

President                                                   Project Director.

Rotary Club of Wanganui North