Saturday, March 14, 2009

More signal box art: Oakley Creek, at Rocket Park

Back in January, I posted about the signal box at the New North Road/ Blockhouse Bay Road corner.

Today, while hanging around Rocket Park in Mt Albert (I was waiting to hear what turned out to be two very interesting talks at a Mt Albert Historical Society event, one by Alice Wylie on the start of the Mt Albert Library, and another by Judge Mick Brown on his memories of Mt Albert), I spotted this:

I thought -- "They've put a waterfall on their signal box. It looks just like the Oakley Creek waterfall!" Then, I looked closer, and saw that not only was it indeed our waterfall, but they had helpfully put on the top of the box (where few under 5'10" could see it without tip-toes) "Te Auaunga, Oakley Creek."

Very nice -- but why put a picture of the Oakley Creek waterfall there, beside the Meola Creek? True, that spot is right beside where the creek runs. In fact, it may be over the creek, but since the latter part of last century, the creek has been channelled and piped and now flows underground in that area, beneath New North Road and beneath Rocket Park and Wairere Ave, resurfacing only once beyond Asquith Avenue or so.

This is where it flowed in the 1880s (LINZ plan, Deed 28)

The squiggly lines going across and under New North Road is the Meola Creek or Stream, named by A K Taylor, if I recall correctly, and which formed the boundary between the Parish of Titirangi and Auckland Suburbs, for the benefit of land conveyancing. See the pump mentioned? Here's where that pump would roughly be (arrowed) compared to the site of the signal box (circled):

Give or take a few metres either way, you understand.

So -- question is, why did Auckland City put a photo (very nice one, though) of a waterfall feature of the Oakley Creek which is actually around three miles away at least from Rocket Park, right next to the real site of the Meola Creek which has more to do with the history of Mt Albert than the Oakley does?


  1. Because someone just grabbed the photo without researching the area properly with the attitude "No one will notice" ?

  2. LOL! And stuck the name of the creek up on the top so that only basketball players would ever know ... ;-)