Waiau Memorial library
The Waiau Memorial library was opened in 1926 and was officially called the Waiau District Soldier’s Memorial Library.
It was Funded by public subscription to honour the fallen soldiers in World War 1. It is a living Memorial to their memory and it has been continually used since it was opened.
The First Committee
Elected on November 8th 1926, the first committee consisted of Messrs McLeod (Chairman), Rillstone (Secretary), Waddell, Stuck, Hamilton, Harper, Smith and Nicholas together with Mesdames Duncan, TJ Henderson, Rillstone, A Prentice, T Ward, Benneworth, McCulloch and Laurie.
Subscriptions were ten shillings a year for one book, with an addition of six shillings a year for each extra book.
- In 1956 our current Chairman Mrs N Dixon joined the library and has been our Chairman since 1969.
- In 1970 ‘Shop Days’ began as a means to raise money for buying books.
- In 1983 the Lions Club donated and laid carpets.
- In 1991 the library changed from a subscription library to being rate funded (all ratepayers in the Ward contribute to the library).
- In 1993 the Waiau Memorial Library Charitable Trust was formed.
After we outgrew the original building, the library was extended and officially opened on the 7th October, 1999.
An exchange of books with Winton occurs 4 times a year, which enables us to have a continued variety of new titles. This helps supplement the grant we are given to buy our own bookstock.
Our staff are voluntary and cover the three sessions held on Fridays. We are grateful for donations to the library of books, magazines and jigsaw puzzles.
We also have four helmets from World War 1 donated to the Library by Audrey Moffatt from the Estate of Charles N Moffatt.
A World War 1 German soldier’s helmet and a Pickelhaube (Officer’s helmet) were brought back from Germany by Sergeant John Gow McDonald of Quarry Hills. Because he drove a wagon, he was able to carry extra gear an infantryman would find difficult.
After Armistice Day, conditions were hard for the German people. These and other items, Sergeant McDonald purchased from impoverished German servicemen.
The other two helmets are a standard issue British helmet and a British Cyprus helmet.
Contributed by Kerri Brown, 05/04/2017