This summer the Chronicle is bringing you another look at some of the best content of 2019. This story originally ran on June 5, 2019
The Kaitoke Hall has been demolished by the NZ Transport Agency due to numerous safety concerns.
The hall is sitting in ruins, surrounded by scaffolding and heavy machinery in its place near the road on State Highway 3 between Turakina and Whanganui.
NZTA originally acquired the hall and its associated land in 2010 as part of the Concord Line Realignment Project, which has been on hold since September 2011.
NZTA regional transport systems manager Mark Owen said it was the proximity of the hall to SH3 that presented multiple safety concerns.
"Over the years there have been several crashes on this corner of the state highway, with the latest crash in 2018 involving a car crashing into the hall," Owen said.
"As a result of this and the failed attempts to sell the hall for removal, a decision was made in February 2019 to demolish the hall."
The demolition was completed in stages, firstly with the removal of recyclable material, followed by the demolition at the end of May.
The debris will be removed from the site in the coming weeks and the land will remain in the ownership of NZTA.
One failed attempt at selling the hall was when it was offered to the Marangai Archery Club who leased the building month-to-month for the last four years.
Rangitikei-Whanganui links focus of business meeting
However, president of the club, Rob McMillan, said that having to take the hall off-site was a deal-breaker as they could not afford to do it.
McMillan said he never thought it would be demolished.
"The hall's been there forever and a day and it was seven years empty when we got it," McMillan said.
"It's happened, we've got to deal with it and now we've got to look around for a new hall."
The Marangai club runs introduction to archery courses as well as training sessions and functions such as birthdays and work dos.
They also operate an outdoor range at Kaierau Rugby Club. Having the hall allowed them to host events year-round without worrying about weather conditions.
McMillan said it had been perfect for the club despite its condition.
"The studs and all that were pretty good, but the rest of the building was full of borer and the roof was rotten. It leaked quite a bit," he said.
"But it was a bloody good time, we put through hundreds and hundreds of kids from the schools. We would have liked to carry on it forever."