Projects supported by the Rod Donald Banks Peninsula Trust are based on four strategic pillars named access, partnerships, knowledge, and biodiversity.

The Christchurch to Little River Rail Trail is a cycleway and walkway from Hornby to Little River following much of the Little River Branch railway line which operated from 1875 until 1967. The trail passes through rural areas and settlements on the Canterbury Plains, skirts past the massive flanks of the ancient volcanoes which make up Banks Peninsula, and hugs the shoreline of a vast lagoon, Te Waihora or Lake Ellesmere (the largest lagoon in mainland New Zealand), and its smaller neighbour, Te Roto o Wairewa or Lake Forsyth.

Te Ara Pātaka, also known as the Summit Walkway, is a 2½ day tramping track linking the Lyttelton and Akaroa craters along the spectacular summit ridgeline of Banks Peninsula. Developing this ridgeline tramp and a network of tracks leading to it from valleys below has been a flagship project for the Trust, working in partnership with the Department of Conservation.

The Rod Donald Hut is a nine bunk tramping hut situated above Little River about half way along Te Ara Pātaka.

The Rod Donald Banks Peninsula Trust is pleased to be part of the very successful annual Banks Peninsula Walking Festival – the only pan-peninsula festival.

Te Ahu Pātiki is 500ha of iconic land including the summits of Mt Herbert/ Te Ahu Patiki and Mt Bradley, the two highest points in the Christchurch/Ōtautahi district.

Rod Donald Banks Peninsula Trust is proud to have facilitated this project, is grateful for the huge public support, and has now handed the land on as a Conservation Park to its new guardians, the Te Ahu Pātiki Charitable Trust.

The Trust set out to make Banks Peninsula walking information easy to find. The results of this project are now available.

The Trust supports the Ecological Vision put forward by Banks Peninsula Conservation Trust. This includes a goal to make Banks Peninsula Pest Free.

Dr Sam Hampton of the University of Canterbury has been developing the concept of a GeoPark for the Banks Peninsula, called the Te Pātaka o Rākaihautū / Banks Peninsula Geopark. A GeoPark highlights regions of geographical significance, including geology, natural and human history, and landuse.

Whaka Ora Pest Project will coordinate and deliver predator control and invasive pest plant management in various parks, reserves and on private land within the Lyttelton/Whakaraupō area.

Native Forest carbon sequestration interface research. Banks Peninsula – providing permanent native forest carbon sinks for Christchurch.

Te Kākahu Kahukura is a large scale collaboration of landowners, residents, organisations and agencies whose vision is to see the Southern Port Hills area become a thriving and resilient indigenous forest supporting native flora and fauna by 2050; a taonga for Ōtautahi.

The Rod Donald Banks Peninsula Trust and Orton Bradley Park have now formed a partnership, with the Trust providing five years of support for the Park’s day to day operations enabling its manager to focus on researching and then developing appropriate new attractions and marketing to lift visitor numbers

The Trust’s stocktake project highlighted the excellent reputation of the Banks Peninsula Conservation Trust (BPCT) achieved through its work with landowners to covenant areas of significant vegetation and with the various agencies involved with pest and weed control to co-ordinate their efforts

A three-way funding partnership has made possible the purchase of a large block of land above Akaroa for conservation and public purposes.

The opening of the Ōtamahua family style tramping hut on Quail Island was celebrated in conjunction with the 2018 Banks Peninsula Walking Festival.

A history of Govenors Bay, Ōhinetahi, Allendale and Teddington by Jane Robertson

The Trust made a contribution to assist with the publication of Head of the Harbour by Philip King Publisher.  The Trust was delighted with the publication as it fills an important gap in Banks Peninsula literature.

The Trust worked in conjunction with partner organisation Josef Langer Trust to secure 107 hectares at Le Bons Bay to be incorporated into the Langer Trust’s Panama Reserve.

Progress is being made on the ambitious Head to Head walkway driven by the Lyttelton/Mt Herbert Community Board.

Forging a new partnership with Living Springs Camp and Conference Centre at Allandale has been a very positive step. The Trust appreciated the extent of Living Springs commitment to native biodiversity restoration, the number of young people who are immersed in that biodiversity at their camps, and the willingness of Living Springs to extend the Lyttelton Head to Head Walkway across their property. Read more…

After working through this project since 2016 the Trust has now secured public access and biodiversity on this popular Akaroa walking track, as well as on-selling the property to provide a new home for two local families.

The Trust was the lead sponsor assisting with the publication of the book “Plant life on Banks Peninsula” by eminent Banks Peninsula botanist Hugh Wilson, launched in October 2013.

In 2013 the Trust worked in partnership with the government Nature Heritage Fund and the Josef Langer Trust to secure the area of Saddle Hill/ Puaitahi as a Department of Conservation scenic reserve.

From the outset, the Trust had established that it would best achieve its objectives for sustainable management and conservation of Banks Peninsula’s natural environment and associated recreation by acting as a facilitator, conduit and connector assisting existing groups with projects that aligned to the Trust’s objectives and taking a lead role only where gaps in the existing mix were identified.

A goal of the Trust since its inception has been to facilitate recreational walking on Banks Peninsula and associated affordable camping.

The Trust engages in advocacy when plans or legislation affect its core objectives