The Republic of Whangamomona
In the heart of the Stratford District in Taranaki lies the small town of Whangamomona. When we say town, of course, what we really mean is republic. When revised district boundaries tried to take Whangamomona out of Taranaki and put it instead in the Manawatu-Whanganui region, the locals said bugger that. In protest, they declared themselves an independent republic, elected a series of presidents, (only some of whom have been human), and got on with doing things their way. Which is not too hard to do when you're a wee way off the beaten track.
Justin Gregory takes the Forgotten World Highway to stay at an historic hotel, rediscover a lost civilisation, talk about the past, present and future and join the locals for a drink or two as they celebrate all things Taranaki.
Whangamomona shops. Photograph by Aidan Wojtas.