The Government has conceded it committed many serious breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi in its treatment of northern hapu after 1840.
In an unusual move, the Crown filed a large number of concessions at the start of the Waitangi Tribunal inquiry into the Ngapuhi land claims last month.
It said many hapu from Mahurangi and the Gulf islands, through to the Bay of Islands and Hokianga, were left virtually landless by 1865 and have many well-founded grievances against the Crown.
Those include the Crown's refusal to return to Maori 'surplus' lands which were falsely claimed by settlers before the Treaty.
Another 17 weeks of hearings are scheduled on the claims, over the next 18 months.