Mourners gathered at Welcome Bay in Tauranga today to farewell the teenage sisters killed on Christmas Day in a horrific car smash.

About 60 cars filled the ground at Tahuwhakatiki Marae for an 11am service, just metres down Welcome Bay Rd from the site where the two-car collision happened.

Merepeka Morehu-Clarke, 14, and Brooklyn Morehu-Clark, 13, were killed when the vehicle they were travelling in allegedly sped past another vehicle and slammed into a Mitsubishi ute.

The girls' father, Wiremu Clark, said the girls were not wearing seat belts.


Flowers adorn wooden crosses marked with their names at the side of the road.

Families, young and old were among mourners gathering at the marae, which is nestled down a long driveway away from the main road next to Rangataua Bay.

Media are not welcome at the marae today.

It is understood the girls will be buried together in the same plot but in separate caskets.

The Auckland man charged with the sisters' deaths appeared in court yesterday facing two counts of manslaughter.

The 20-year-old, who was driving the vehicle in which the sisters were back seat passengers, was remanded in custody to re-appear in court next week.

The father of the accused told media outside the court he felt it was unfair his son would miss the girls' tangi.