Thinking about a museum for Tauranga

Ken Gorbey (left) with Bruce Farthing at Taonga Tauranga public breakfast to discuss a local museum. Photos and video: Rosalie Liddle Crawford.

Click the image above to watch the video

Renowned ‘museologist’ Ken Gorbey believes museums are a sign of ‘cultural maturity’, and that it’s time Tauranga had one.

He was the presenter at the second in a series of public breakfasts to discuss the merits of a museum for Tauranga, held on Wednesday morning at the Devonport Hotel.

Ken spoke at the invitation of Taonga Tauranga, a group pushing for the establishment of a museum in the city.

He was introduced by Otumoetai College deputy principal Bruce Farthing, who says Ken is ‘without a doubt’ one of New Zealand’s leading museologists.

“He played a particularly pivotal role in the establishment of Te Papa, and has advised throughout New Zealand on small museums, right through to large museums across the world,” says Bruce.

Ken, who says he has 50 years of experience in the heritage profession, says he believes in making museums ‘truly fit the culture of their city and region, and available to all the populace’.

“I believe museums are part of a fundamental morality to our society, and are therefore incredibly important.”

He says the word ‘museum’ typically conjures up images of ‘vast collections and vast buildings’.

“But there are only around 20 or 30 of those models worldwide, whereas there are probably around 70,000 museums around the world.”

He says Tauranga residents have the ‘incredible opportunity’ of being able to choose what kind of museum they have, which he suggests should incorporate tourism and modern technology, without becoming a ‘Disneyland’.

“Libraries have kept up for the last 100 years, transforming themselves into information centres for their communities. They used to be about just collecting and protecting books.”

Mount Maunganui College students Samuel Taylor and Louis Donovan.

City Councillors meeting with Ken Gorbey after the breakfast meeting (Leanne Brown, Max Mason, Larry Baldock, Deputy Mayor Kelvin Clout).


All have excess grins

Posted on 18-03-2018 14:52 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Its like they are all on something that has nothing to do with truth or reality. Its about the happy face, no idea why, just have one, the other key factor is that the lift no longer makes it tot eh top floor anymore (if ever did) hence the auto response of grinning excessively.

@ teamjelly

Posted on 18-03-2018 14:50 | By MISS ADVENTURE

yes, they are rolling out all these persons from afar, none are contributiing towards it, none will pay the bills and none actually have a clue about a thing on the money. They merely spout their own views on how wonderful it all is (wam fuzzies) for them only) and fail to say that they expect and in fact demand all others pay for them to have a extravagant happy zone.

@ waiknot

Posted on 18-03-2018 14:47 | By MISS ADVENTURE

They wont do that, no way. Someone truly "independent" would mean that the truth gets out before hand. You then have a disaster revealed and then very simple to calculate the impact on rates annually (HUGE). All numbers that TCC put out are very optimistic i.e. low or non-existent or denied. Reality is that the costs will be massive both up front and ongoing.

Round 2

Posted on 09-03-2018 22:50 | By teamjelly

TAURANGA already has a museumIt’s called THE HISTORICAL VILLAGEPlenty of Tax payers money went into that - and don’t see too many queues to get into there or it ever having turned a profitNow it seems we need another oneI believe it was Philosopher George Santayana who said"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."


Posted on 08-03-2018 14:26 | By waiknot

With all these experts arriving to tell us whats best, how about bringing an expert financial wizard to calculate how much it will cost.

@ Told you

Posted on 08-03-2018 14:21 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Irrespective of a referendum the TCC staff "machine" is steaming ahead spending millions of all facets of it. This includes drumming up support or more accurately attempting to appear like there is support ofr it when there isnt but a wee amount of those wanting rates paid jobs doing nothing useful, i.e. joining the ranks...


Posted on 08-03-2018 14:12 | By

Great news.


Posted on 08-03-2018 13:53 | By rastus

Democracy is fast becoming a thing of the distant past with councilors of all kinds making their own agendas, in many cases against the wishes of the majority - IMHO our mayor is hanging on by the skin of his teeth by promising a referendum on the future of the museum project - I for one think there are many, more pressing issues for Tauranga and my only hope is that the council will abide by the result which given the feedback I have had will most certainly be a ’NO’

We don't want or need

Posted on 08-03-2018 13:33 | By earlybird

an out of towner telling us what we should have. There are a lot of things we need before a museum. When the referendum goes out it should include the question... How many times have you visited a museum [any museum] in the last 10 years. $50 million on a museum building is a waste of ratepayers money.... and then you have $x a year to run it. No thanks. If a museum was as important as some are saying, private investors would be lining up to build it. So, why not invite corporates or private investors to build and run it with the proviso that they can charge an appropriate entrance fee to cover their costs. Whoa lookout, I can hear a stampede - but are they coming or going??


Posted on 08-03-2018 08:35 | By Told you

I thought we were having a Referendum on whether the ratepayers wanted this Museum? this meeting is just mischief making and names there have been noted for voting purpose in the future.


Posted on 08-03-2018 00:34 | By MISS ADVENTURE

That is an absolutely danagerous idea to let lose in TCC chambers never mind anywhere else based upon the nature and caliber of this concept.

Pushing the point

Posted on 07-03-2018 21:45 | By CC8

Here we go again, another fossil being brought in to "manufacture news" and try to convince the ratepayers that they should be funding Larry Baldock’s pet projects. Is there NOTHING that this man will not do to get his own way?

Wait for the referendum

Posted on 07-03-2018 20:57 | By Angels

Then follow the wishes of the voters whichever way it goes


Posted on 07-03-2018 20:45 | By groutby

..keep thinking about it Ken, and when you get enough private financial backers you go for it !!...oh..just seen the first hurdle...


Posted on 07-03-2018 20:38 | By dumbkof2

more dollars wasted on more experts. if this thing is given the go ahead say goodbye to one hundred million

They Can All

Posted on 07-03-2018 19:54 | By R1Squid

put their wallets where their mouths are. Don’t ask me to pay for it as I believe in user pays and I certainly won’t be using it!

Maturity at work

Posted on 07-03-2018 19:33 | By backofthequeue

We are going to bring culture to Tauranga even if we have to spend every dollar you have!

Take minutes

Posted on 07-03-2018 19:21 | By maildrop

No point sending Larry to listen to what he has to say because Larry makes up his own version later.

Here we go again

Posted on 07-03-2018 19:10 | By maildrop

Another cronie expert who won’t have to pay for it. Te Papa mentioned again. It only survives on tax subsidies and grants.

Thinking of a Museum - Think Again

Posted on 07-03-2018 18:30 | By Esme F

Why push for a museum when Road Infrastructure, Homelessness and Child Poverty are needed more. Who will visit/go to the museum? Not the homeless, not sick or hungry children and NOT the people stuck in traffic

Artz appreciation?

Posted on 07-03-2018 18:27 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Is seriouly over-rated, the use and merit of art and related subjects is all lovely and interesting and is worthy of perhaps a monet or two of time to look and consider. Beyond that it is indeed a huge waste of time and space.

Fatal mistake here!

Posted on 07-03-2018 18:25 | By MISS ADVENTURE

"Thinking", if you let Councillors "think" or TCC staff "think" or artzy types attempt to "think" that what we know will be the result is another over-sized, over-staffed extravagant costly monument to arrant stupidity will be created and multiply. The result, lots of rates to pay for all.


Posted on 07-03-2018 18:23 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Go hand in hand, the naivity of the artz furtunity that all is wonderful and lovely and there is a pot of gold around every corner ... .I know there is stop hiding it from me to do whatever I want ... nothing to show for it. The truth is very clearly revealed by the Art gallery operational failures barely 20% of just teh oeprational costs are being covered, the rest is all from rates, yet the stupids run roit in the place and they all think that they are doing wonderful and make a surplus? The mind boggles with the brain cell (one only barely operational) to be able to get to that answer so easily. Of course the answer is not about money or costs related and consequential, it is all about and only about "I WANT". That means they want everyone to pay for it.

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