Te Ahu Pātiki

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

Rod Donald Banks Peninsula Trust purchased this substantial block and brought it into public ownership on 1 July 2021. We are the interim owners of the land and are intending to transfer the land to its permanent owners – the new Te Ahu Pātiki Charitable Trust that we have set up in conjunction with our  partners Te Hapū o Ngāti Wheke Inc, Orton Bradley Park and Te Rūnanga o Koukourarata.  Our partnership began with the signing of a MOU  regarding the future ownership and management of the new Te Ahu Pātiki park outlining key governance, conservation and management principles.

The Trust gives a huge thank you to the park Foundation Sponsors who collectively donated $952,593 toward the purchase and set up of the park prior to its purchase on 1 July 2021. (Note this is $935,928 net of platform and credit card fees).  We thank The Press and Stuff for supporting our campaign and for the many excellent articles they have published about Te Ahu Pātiki.

We  thank the many people who have donated since the purchase raising over $30,000 more to assist with setting up the new park.

We thank the agencies who have given substantial grant funding during the first year for various projects around the park. These have helped enable fencing work, weed control, track maintenance, completion of the walking easements and to commission an Ecological Survey and Stocktake. We are most grateful for these grants from:

  • Walking Access Commission Enhanced Access Fund,
  • Christchurch City Council Biodiversity Fund,
  • ECAN Banks Peninsula Zone Committee,
  • ECAN Zone Priority Fund,
  • ECAN Waitaha Input for Action fund,
  • ECAN Biodiversity fund, and,
  • QEII National Trust.

The future of Te Ahu Pātiki is now secured as:

  • a highly visible landscape transforming to native forest,
  • a biodiversity hotspot completing a 1700ha network of continuous protection,
  • a stunning recreational asset for walking, biking and climbing,
  • a protected catchment from summit to sea – ki uta ki tai
  • and with secure public  access on the Te Ara Pātaka/Summit Walkway linking Christchurch to Akaroa

The land is protected in perpetuity with a conservation covenant and will be managed to facilitate natural regeneration of native forest. Income from the carbon sequestered in this forest will fund the management in time to come. You will be able to watch this highly visible landscape transform from mainly gorse to native forest over the years, a process assisted by the withdrawal of grazing animals from the land and the extensive seed sources already on the block in both old growth and already regenerating areas.

Protecting this land in conjunction with securing public access helps realise the 100 year-old vision of the early conservationist Christchurch MP Harry Ell and the modern vision of Whaka-Ora – the Lyttelton/Whakaraupō catchment management plan.

View a location map to see where Te Ahu Patiki is.

View our visual journey – beautiful images of Te Ahu Pātiki.

Watch our video explaining this project and its relation to the Trust and to Te Ara Pātaka.

Download the Te Ahu Patiki project leaflet.

Read our  more detailed Te Ahu Pātiki project prospectus.

View the TV 1 News interview HERE


Te Hapū o Ngāti Wheke  and Te Rūnanga o Koukourarata have mana whenua over this area and are partners in the project.

Neighbouring Orton Bradley Park is also a project partner pledging a substantial contribution toward Te Ahu Pátiki, and currently maintaining the land.

Orton Bradley Park occupies 600ha immediately below Te Ahu Pátiki. It operates a model farm park with walking tracks, camping areas and an outdoor education centre, acting as a natural gateway to Te Ahu Pátiki above.

Above  – Mt Bradley towers over the Orton Bradley Park Outdoor Education and Camping Centre.

Harry Ell Memorial Summit Road Trust was our initial donor.

Christchurch Foundation provided our initial fundraising platform, as well as Givealittle.

Read letters of support  from many other agencies and community organisations here.

Achievements to Date

June 2023 – Sarah Wilson appointed as Rod Donald Trust representative on the Te Ahu Pātiki Board.

April 2023 – The Te Ahu Pātiki Charitable Trust launch their new WEBSITE!

March 2023 – Te Ahu Pātiki Charitable Trust seek new Trustees for its Board to help expand its expertise – Click HERE for a description of the role, and HERE to read The Press article.

October 2022 – Orton Bradley Park Valley Track re-routed to provide year round access to Te Ahu Pātiki Park. – Click HERE to read more.

5 September 2022 – The Te Ahu Pātiki Charitable Trust becomes the official kaitiaki of Te Ahu Pātiki – the Maunga – Click HERE to read more

July 2022 – Schedule 3 Fencing contract completed

30 June 2022 – Walking easements and covenant registered on title – documents in place to transfer the property to the Te Ahu Pátiki Trust when they are ready.

April 28th 2022 – Biodiversity on the land is protected with a QEII Trust Covenant and public walking and biking access with a Walking Access easement.

Rod Donald Trust Co Chairs Jenn Chowaniec and Richard Suggate sign the covenant watched by Alice Shanks from the QEII National Trust and Geoff Holgate from the Walking Access Commission

9 March 2022 – The Trust Deed is signed and the new ‘Te Ahu Pātiki Charitable Trust’ is established.

Founding Board members: Mananui Ramsden, Scott Winter, Chris Glasson, Roy Tikao, Maureen McCloy and Bob Frame (photo Yvette Couch-Lewis)

February 2022 – Fence improvements began by Matt Latham and his team from ‘Two Boys Fencing’. Chick HERE for more details.

September 2021 – Track upgrades underway by Matt Coultas from ‘Graded Earth’. Check out this great Press article about his work.

August 2021 – Te Ahu Pātiki Restoration Workshop – click HERE for details

July 24 2021 – Te Ahu Pātiki substantial donor and supporter thank you function held at Living Springs, with the  MOU Schedule 1 signing  – the agreement documenting the shared values and aims of the three parties for Te Ahu Pātiki.

July 3 2021 – ‘Te Ahu Pātiki Up Close’ donor appreaication event

July 1 2021 – The Trust becomes the owner of the main Te Ahu Pātiki block of land. See our Press Release here.

June 10 2021 – The Trust, Te Hapū o Ngāti Wheke Inc and Orton Bradley Park sign an MOU regarding our intentions to work together to shape the future of the Park.

May 26 2021 – The Press and Stuff launch the Buy the Hill campaign to assist with our fundraising and raise the balance of funds needed for the purchase on the same day! We send a huge thank you to them for this incredible support.

May 17 2021 – We meet with QEII CEO who signs a letter indicating that QEII are willing to be the covenanting agency for the park.

March 2021 – Many thanks to The Press/StuffBay Harbour News (p19)  and Nicola Toki on Radio NZ for featuring our story. We have now raised $382,000 with more donations coming in thanks to this publicity.

February 2021 – We are half way through our fundraising campaign and have raised $350,000 -so over our half way mark!

October 2020 – Public launch of Te Ahu Pātiki project and fundraising campaign at Eruption Bar on October 29.

October 2020 – We sign a Sale and Purchase agreement ensuring the land will transfer into our ownership on 1 July 2021.

Picture below: Loudon Farm owners Philip King and Sarah-Lovell Smith with Rod Donald Trustees Maureen McCloy and Cynthia Roberts signing the documents.

April 2020 – During lockdown we reach agreement in principle on a Zoom meeting with Philip King and Sarah Lovell-Smith, landowners of Loudon Farm that we have a shared aim to create a conservation park on the upper 500ha

November 2016 – Te Ara Pātaka formally opens. Over 100 people climbed Mt Herbert/Te Ahu Pātiki for the event opened by Philip King.

December 2014 – We first met with Philip King and Sarah Lovell-Smith to discuss securing long term public access on important walking tracks that crossed their private land. We acknowledged their generosity in allowing the public to walk across their land for many years on the Summit Walkway (now known as Te Ara Pātaka) and on tracks connecting up from Orton Bradley Park.