August 08, 2019
Pootatau flag returned to Kiingitanga
An historic flag has been returned to the Kiingitanga after more than 150 years in the hands of the Anglican Church.
The Pootatau Te Wherowhero Flag was included in exhibition at Auckland War Memorial Museum Tāmaki Paenga Hira to mark the 160th anniversary of the Kiingitanga.
It's believed the flag may have been made as a kind of funeral pall at the time of the King's death in 1860, and it was taken to England in 1865 by a clergyperson who had served for a time in Aotearoa.
When it surfaced in 1929, the Church sent it to the then Bishop of Auckland, Archbishop Averill, who placed it in the museum for safekeeping.
The Diocese of Auckland has now agreed the Kiingitanga to assume the role of kaitiaki, and the flag was handed over this morning to the son of Kiingi Tuheitia, Te Ariki Tamaroa Whatumoana, at a ceremony at the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Auckland.
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