Labour leader Jacinda Ardern's campaign has taken her to the region renowned as the birthplace of the Labour Party where she was given the blessing of the families of those who died in the Pike River Mine explosion.

Ardern met with family members at the Pike River memorial on the West Coast to re-state her commitment to re-enter the mine in which 29 miners died following explosions in 2010.

"After all this time, the least we can do is the right thing," she told them.

In the rain at the memorial, Ardern told the families of her commitment for a recently of the mine and in the first 100 days of a Labour government to set up a Pike River Recovery Agency and appoint a minister charged with entering the mine.

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Labour leader Jacinda Ardern talks to Pike River families spokesman Bernie Monk at the Pike River Memorial while West Coast MP Damian O'Connor looks on. Photo / Claire Trevett
Labour leader Jacinda Ardern talks to Pike River families spokesman Bernie Monk at the Pike River Memorial while West Coast MP Damian O'Connor looks on. Photo / Claire Trevett

Anna Osbourne, whose husband Milton was among those killed, said she was hoping for a change of Government to ensure the re-entry went ahead.

"We've had lies, we've had broken promises, so I'm hoping for a change of Government," Osbourne said.

The National Government has refused to attempt a manned re-entry because its expert analysis said it would be too risky. That was disputed by the families who obtained their own expert analysis.

Families spokesman Bernie Monk also said Ardern had his support, saying while he did not expect Ardern to wave a magic wand and fix everything the families believed re-entry was safe.

Ardern was gifted a pounamu pendant titled Ataahua Pou [beautiful pillar].

Earlier in the day Ardern had visited Nelson to speak to the students at Nelson Girls' College and to a crowd of more than 400 at a Grey Power function.

She began the latter by telling them her own ancestors had first settled in Nelson - and become the town's first bakers. "I'm told they did a roaring trade in bread and ginger beer."

She also used that meeting to strike back at the National Party, accusing it of running a "dishonest campaign" by claiming Labour was planning to introduce several new taxes.

Her day ended on a more convivial note with a visit to Blackball to meet the locals at the formerly Blackball Hilton.

Blackball is regarded as the birthplace of the Labour Party - it was the cribtime' strike at Blackball in 1908 that resulted in the unions Labour was formed from.

After being bailed up by an anti-1080 campaigner, Ardern was feted with applause and a gift of some Blackball salami.

Later that night one of Ardern's entourage became the centre of attention - Annette King has been travelling with Ardern and Ardern was told late in the day it was a notable birthday for King.

Ardern had given King a promotion to warrant the occasion.

Two weeks ago at Rongomai School in Mangere, Ardern instructed the school children to call King Aunty.

Yesterday at Nelson Girls she was promoted to "Queen."

As for Ardern's other regular escort, Trevor Mallard, he was consigned to standing in the rain holding the umbrella over Ardern in weather she described as a "tradional West Coast welcome".