Tahuwhakatiki Marae was established in 1912 on a narrow peninsula called Te Whare o Tahuwhakatiki, on land owned by 19th Century Ngā Pōtiki leader Eruera Te Tauhou, who was also known as Eru Tamapahore. The marae was established to serve Ngā Pōtiki generally.
The fully carved wharenui Rongomainohorangi commemorates a renowned Mataatua ancestor. The whare manaaki acknowledges his wife Tuwairua, who is also an ancestor of note belonging to Ngāti Pūkenga. While Tuwairua lived many centuries ago this tupuna kuia symbolises the close Ngā Pōtiki relationship with Ngāti Pukenga. She was the mother of Tamapahore.
The rich and intricate carvings were produced in classic Te Arawa style under the direction of master carver Hoani Taiapa at the Māori Arts and Crafts Institute at Whakarewarewa and affixed to the newly refurbished Rongomainohorangi in 1974. Together, with the newly constructed concrete block wharekai Tuwairua, both were opened by Arikinui Te Atairangikaahu at the head of a large delegation from Waikato Tainui in the same year. Tuwairua replaced an earlier building of the same name that had been opened by her father Koroki, the fifth Maori King in 1935.
In early 2021, the whakairo were refreshed by Ngā Pōtiki carver and cultural advisor Dr Des Tatana Kahotea as part of a major wharenui renovation. The carvings along the māhau, together with panels on either side of the paepae, are more recent having been produced at Te Puia’s New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute (NZMACI) under Master Carver Clive Fugill. Those carvings are based on whakairo that once adorned the wharenui Tamapahore carved in 1896 by tohunga whakairo Meihana Tawakura of Ngā Pōtiki/Ngāti Awa.
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Bookings contact: Janice Harrison – 027 381 6212