Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Down at the Hall in Matamata district

Here's a piece I wrote about this book for NZ Legacy:

Matamata Historical Society have produced another of their informative books about their region: Down At The Hall: Celebrating Matamata Country Halls, by Joan Stanley. Country halls are landmarks for New Zealanders around the country, not just in terms of their familiar presence within our communities but also in terms of the history they represent, and what they have meant to generations over the course of time.

Joan’s book offers a lively glimpse, via the memories of those who used the halls or were associated with them, of the stories behind twenty-four halls. The recollections range from community socials, activities and movie showings, to examples such as the past life of Gordon Hall: once one of the local school buildings used as a base during the search and rescue operation for the 1963 DC3 Airliner crash in the Kaimai Ranges.

Cost: $20, plus $2 p&p within New Zealand
Available from:
Matamata Historical Society Inc, 12 Totara Ave,
Matamata 3400

Softcover, A5 size, 92 pages.

As an extra, Joan Stanley asked the Matamata-Piako District Council to send up a copy of their latest Heritage Trail booklet. If you're ever thinking of going to that district for a spell, get a copy ($5 from the district council). It is an extremely well-written and well laid out information booklet which highlights the heritage of the district well. Needless to say, Joan worked hard contributing toward it, as well.


  1. An email just received from Joan Stanley:

    "Thank you Lisa
    Thank you for featuring our two recent Matamata publications. We hope they will be of interest to people outside our area as well as in the Matamata Piako District. We hope people will visit use and use the Heritage Trail booklet when they drive around our country district.
    Kind regards
    Joan Stanley"

    You're welcome, Joan. Always delighted to promote Matamata and your society.

  2. Matamata means 'headland'.This was the name of a new pa established in 1830 by Te Waharoa,the famous Ngatihaua chief.
    Matamata history

  3. Thanks for the comment, Parag. But your link, curiously, is to do with Matmata in Tunisia? Missing an "a", there.

    Cheers, though.