Maverick and visionary, Mother Suzanne Aubert was responsible for New Zealand’s first purpose-built child daycare centre behind Wellington’s Basin Reserve. Both government and the public were suspicious of the Home of Compassion Crèche, constructed in 1914. Daycare could encourage mothers to neglect their children said the values of the day. Spectrum’s Jack Perkins explores the newly renovated building with Heritage architect Alison Dangerfield.
This week on Spectrum - A Night at the Museum. Katy Gosset heads to the Catlins in search of the Lost Gypsy Gallery. In remote Papatowai, Blair Somerville crafts automata, or moving sculptures, from recycled materials and displays them over the summer to appreciative tourists. But on a bleak winter's evening, during Blair's off season, Katy pays a visit after dark and takes a torchlight tour she calls ‘Automata Nocturne’.
Josie Lancaster has converted the basement of her Porirua home into a Koha Shed where people bring all manner of goods – clothes, toys, books, furniture, the list is long - to help those in need in the community. Spectrum’s Jack Perkins finds out how it all works and talks to the givers and receivers of koha (Maori for gift).
Spectrum’s Jack Perkins explores the philosophy and history of Levin’s Radio Reading Service which provides regional and national news and current affairs for the print disabled. A Print Disabled person is anyone who cannot see, hold, understand or access every day printed literature. The Radio Reading Service turns print into sound for anyone who finds it difficult to read conventional print.
Anjalee the elephant is on her way to Auckland - via a 90 day stopover in Niue. The eight-year-old female, the first ever elephant on the island, is passing her quarantine period there before settling in at Auckland Zoo. Not surprisingly, she’s become a big hit with the locals. Spectrum’s Justin Gregory is in Niue to meet Anjalee and find out what it takes to make an elephant feel at home.
Two little World War One mysteries for the little town of Waihi; it’s all about two rolls of honour created for the men and youths from the town who went to fight in the First World War.
In Spectrum this week Jerome Cvitanovich travels to Otematata to meet the Meridian staff who keep the Benmore dam operating and meet the men, women and children who moved to the village 50 years ago to be part of its construction.
Dotted along Wellington’s waterfront are plaques and inlaid benches quoting from some of New Zealand’s finest writers. Accompanied by Spectrum’s Jack Perkins, Rosemary Wildblood, Barbara Murison and Philippa Werry, explore the sculptured words of writers who have experienced the Capital in all its diversity.
In 1972 a group of radical feminists espousing Women’s Liberation and Socialism bought 8 Winn Road in Freemans Bay, central Auckland. Two members of the group are writing the history of the house and their time there, including the night they stormed the Great Northern Hotel on Queen Street to protest the exclusion of women. Spectrum goes back to Winn Road with founding members of the group to talk about a feminist slice of Auckland's history.
Taupo’s annual Medieval Fair celebrates the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, an attempt to make peace between unpopular and unscrupulous King John and the English barons. Magna Carta has resonated down the ages influencing the thinking behind the American Declaration of Independence and even New Zealand’s Treaty of Waitangi.
Spectrum joins the Birch Hill Ride, to mark the role of horses in our military history. As ANZAC Day approaches and we remember our fallen soldiers, North Canterbury riding enthusiasts have not forgotten our equine allies. Several hundred people rode, walked or climbed aboard covered wagons for the trip to Birch Hill Cemetery where a plaque erected in 1937 pays tribute to the horses killed in the Great War.
Claire Gormly and Rose Jackson don’t just dress up in vintage clothes, they live things vintage. They’ve collected clothing, jewellery, hats, and handbags from the Victorian era to the 1970s, in fact they rarely buy new clothes or accessories. But as their magazine Glory Days illustrates, vintage touches most things:- classic motor scooters, films, furniture, etiquette and good manners- the list is endless. Spectrum’s vintage Jack Perkins explores things vintage - excluding himself.
A Northland family clears away a decades-old collection of classic radios.
When motorcyclists get together, there's usually a fair bit of noise involved, both on and off the track, and when their annual Sound of Thunder racing series mounts a tribute to the renowned New Zealand motorbike designer, John Brittten, there's even more to talk about. Katy Gosset joins competitors and the Britten family for a day at the BEARS (British, European and American Racing Series.)
In January 1993, publican Paddy Feaney claimed to have sighted a large Moa near Lake Brunner on the South Island West Coast. Paddy’s sighting of what was thought to be a long extinct native bird, sparked off Moa Mania and was picked up by press, radio and television around the world, not to mention Moa hysteria in the tiny Lake Brunner settlement of Moana. Spectrum’s Jack Perkins compiled a special report on Moa Mania. (first broadcast in January 1993).
The Karekare Beach races had been an annual fundraising event for the tiny beachside community for nearly 30 years, but due to dwindling numbers, time was called in 2013.
But with the local surf club celebrating its 80th anniversary, locals saw the opportunity to bring back the races. Join Spectrum’s Lisa Thompson for a day at the races beach-style.
Little Dog Barking Theatre, directed by Peter Wilson, creates endearing tales for children using puppetry and clever props. Spectrum’s Jack Perkins drops in on a rehearsal of ‘Guji Guji’ by acclaimed Chinese author Chi-Yuan Chen. Involving crocodiles and ducks, this nature versus nurture story demonstrates how traditional Chinese puppetry goes far beyond the crude antics of the English Punch and Judy shows.
The New Zealand native falcon (karearea) is severely threatened with fewer than 6000 left. The Marlborough Falcon Trust (supported by Brancott Wines) is determined to save this beautiful bird by a programme of captive breeding. But MFT also recognizes the importance of educating the public and gaining their support. Spectrum’s Jack Perkins drops in on MFT.