Cushla Scrivens' family lived in Feilding and it was her schoolteacher father Noel Amadio who piqued her interest in history.
In the 2020 New Year honours Scrivens' has been given the Queen's Service Medal for her services to historical research and heritage preservation in the Manawatū and Horowhenua.
Scrivens said it was not until she returned to the Manawatū that she again became interested in local history.
An early memory for Scrivens was at Feilding Ag and students were given a booklet about Feilding.
"I walked around to see if everything was still there," she said of the Manawatū township.
She also had a long career as a teacher, first at the Correspondence school based in Wellington, then as an early childhood educator.
It was now 1990 and Scrivens was invited to teach distance learning at Palmerston North Teachers College, a position she held for 14 years.
It was also at this time that curiosity ignited Scrivens' researching the history of Manawatū.
She was the foundation editor of the Manawatū Journal of History from 2004 to 2017.
"The aim was to talk about the wider Manawatū area," she said of the research journal which covered the Manawatū, included Foxton and up to Rangiwahia.
"It was always a journal where people volunteered. It was intended for ordinary reading.
"I like to encourage people to have their view."
The other offices she has held were secretary of Historic Places Manawatū-Horowhenua since 2008 and then as treasurer from 2010 to 2012.
She organised regular field trips and compiled the society's quarterly newsletter.
Scrivens mentioned the late Wendy Pettigrew from Whanganui who not only held strong to her personal views, but was a great help with historical matters.
At the regional level she liaised with the planning staff of the three local councils on heritage policy issues.
Scrivens has published a variety of academic articles and educational material, and has developed the Historic Places Manawatū-Horowhenua website and its online record.
She was on the Te Manawa Museum Society committee from 2009-2015 which supports the staff in providing exhibitions with public appeal and a variety of services and activities, and co-organised the national conference of Historic Places Aotearoa in Palmerston North.
Adding to her long list of community involvement, Scrivens was appointed a trustee of the Caccia Birch House Trust in 2018 and is supervising the creation of historical displays at the associated Coach House to enhance visitor experiences.