The old Mount Maunganui Lifeguard Service clubhouse will be levelled over the next few days.

A digger joins demolition crews from tomorrow and the new clubhouse building project will enter its next phase.

The current building has stood on Mount Main Beach since 1979.

Demolition crews have spent the last month securing the site and removing asbestos, ahead of a $3m rebuild of the club.


Club chairman Paul Manning is excited about the progress.

"Much of the work so far has been behind the scenes but the public will really start to see some big changes from here," he said.

"Locals and visitors alike will be able to see a world-class lifeguarding and response service facility taking shape, that will help us better protect people on the beaches and surrounding coastline."

Asbestos removal put the project slightly behind, but Manning is confident the project will still meet its final deadlines at the end of the year.

"It's a common occurrence in buildings of that era but it was removed by a licensed and experienced operator, with WorkSafe helping oversee it," Manning said of the asbestos.

"This is just one of the challenges that comes from a project like this but the contractors have kept us in the loop all the way through and we're still hopeful of resuming core lifeguarding duties from the club by December."

Mount Maunganui is one of the busiest beaches for surf lifesaving patrols in New Zealand, with big swells throughout February and March producing a number of rescues and hundreds of preventative actions.

The club will have its lifeguarding equipment on standby throughout winter, stored at the neighbouring Mount Maunganui Beachside Holiday Park.


Voluntary weekend patrols will start again at Labour Weekend in late October.

The club will spend the winter raising the additional $800,000 needed to complete and refit the new clubhouse building.

Manning is hopeful of a strong response from the Bay of Plenty community.

"A number of funding partners have helped to get us most of the way there, allowing us to start and minimise disruption to our next patrolling season, but we'd love to talk to any businesses or community members keen to help us secure the remaining funds," he said.

"We've built up some incredible goodwill over the 90 years our members have been patrolling Mount Maunganui beaches and we'd love to invest some of that goodwill in ensuring we can keep providing a world-class service to the public."