Progress sometimes has to to proceed or in the case of an old much loved Oak tree some of the local residents are up in arms about its removal from the Maungaturoto Primary School grounds. The problem is the school very badly needs a new classroom to cater for its ever increasing school roll. A petition is being circulated in the township to save the old tree from getting the chop. The kids above all aren't feeling too happy about losing their favourite shade place. My own children have been asking why the tree can't be saved. Difficult question that to answer. A general chat about in Maungaturoto saw some saying the tree should be saved and others saying the tree was full of rot and it didn't really have any history. On the latter I beg to differ yes this tree along with several others on the Primary School grounds does indeed have a history and some meaning for the history of the school. After reading screeds of very small print in the History of the Maungaturoto Primary School 1874 - 1974 I hit the jackpot so to speak.
There it was on page 42 as follows:
With great ceremony and care these trees were planted all along the boundary fence between the horse paddock and the school ground, Healey's boundary in the piece in front of the new school house section and along the remaining boundary fence. Mr Gerrard personally supervising the entire project with enthusiasm.
There were wattles, gums, oaks, puriri, pepper, and many other native trees planted. Each week we were allotted a short gardening time to attend our tree.
Today, but a few have weathered the test of time and many changes to the school grounds that have come to pass. There could be a few ex-pupils returning to the school for the centennial hopefully looking for the tree they planted so many years ago.
The few lonely oaks and one or two others that remain today, silent sentinels to all that has passed along these years, will perhaps gladden the heart of someone too, who, remembers our Arbour Day of long ago
- Maungaturoto Primary School History 1874 - 1974
The old Oak Tree will turn a century old in 2026 if it remains or just a memory will be there in place. Somewhere the once child that planted that tree on that Arbour Day of 1926 will perhaps still remember their special tree.