A Papamoa man's drive to memorialise those who fought for our country has resulted in funding for a new war memorial in the suburb.

When Papamoa resident Mick O'Carroll moved into town last year he noticed something was missing.

"We don't have a place for locals to gather and pay their respects to those who gave their lives so that we can live in freedom today," O'Carroll said.

He approached Councillor Steve Morris with his idea for a memorial.


"Driving through small towns in New Zealand you'll notice they all have war memorials commemorating local men.

"My second great-uncle's name is on the memorial at Kaitieke, population less than 100. Papamoa, population 26,000, doesn't have one. What better place than the Papamoa Domain?" Morris said.

The Mount Maunganui RSA agreed to take on the project.

Its president Derek Williams told the Tauranga City Council: "The executive agrees that a memorial at the beautiful Papamoa Domain would be a fitting place of reflection - 1466 members out of our total membership of 5330 live in Papamoa; many within a close distance of the Domain."

Morris said the board of Papamoa iwi, Ngā Pōtiki was also enthusiastic about a memorial.

"It's important that the memorial acknowledges the large number of Ngā Pōtiki men who volunteered in both world wars and subsequent conflicts," Morris said.

"I then asked my colleagues at Tauranga City Council if they would support the use of public land at the Papamoa Domain for this purpose. They agreed wholeheartedly, every one of them."

The memorial will honour all those who served in the three armed forces and the merchant navy, Morris said, and no ratepayer funding is sought.


The $18,000 project will be entirely funded through donations with ongoing maintenance by the RSA.

The spire will stand at about 2m and it is hoped it will be dedicated at 11am on November 11 this year - 100 years since the World War I armistice.

Mike Burrows from Burrows Concrete Ltd has donated his company's time and materials to build the foundation and plinth, and also donated $2000 towards the granite spire.

The crew of the Anzac frigate HMNZS Te Mana, which has Tauranga as its home port, has also pledged $1000.

"We are tremendously grateful for the spontaneous generosity of Mike and HMNZS Te Mana," O'Carroll said.

Morris said the new memorial would not affect memorial services at Mt Maunganui.

"The Mount Cenotaph will still be the focus of the dawn parade and memorial services on Anzac Day, but it does provide a place for an additional service later in the day."

Anyone who wants to, can donate via the Papamoa War Memorial account: 12-3407-0074451-00 and email their details to steve.morris@tauranga.govt.nz or phone Morris on 021 519 941.