The Grand Opening

The official opening of the Garden of Reflection, was Saturday 2nd of December 2017 the 120th Anniversary date of Rewi Alley’s birthday.

It was a beautiful sunny day for the celebration of the opening of the Garden of Reflection and designed to be a community event that was inclusive of those who wished to be in attendance.

The official speeches were given by the Mayor of Hurunui District Winton Dalley as the host. The Governor General of New Zealand. Dame Patsy Reddy, representing the Queen, and the New Zealand Government. Consul General Mr Wang Zhijian of the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China based in Christchurch representing the People’s Republic of China.

All acknowledging the 45 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries, the 120th Commemoration of Rewi Alley’s birth and the opening of the Garden of Reflection affirming the intentions of the two sister district relationships Hurunui District with Changping District Beijing and Honghu City Hubei.

True to the principle of ensuring that the event was child and youth inclusive, students from Amberley School provide a Maori welcome to all attendees, students from both Hubei Province representing their counterparts from Changping District Beijing and Hurunui District cut the ribbons opening the Honghu City and Changping District, Beijing gardens.   Whilst the three key dignities cut the official ribbon to open the Chinese styled bridge and unveiled the plaque acknowledging the commemorations.

After the official part of the programme, all the attendees were invited to enjoy a picnic lunch themed along the same as a traditional community picnic at the beginning of the last century when Rewi Alley was a young lad growing up in the Hurunui District.

The Governments of both the People’s Republic of China and New Zealand generously contributed to supporting Hurunui District Councils festivity arrangements on the day.


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