Special dates marked
November is a month of anniversaries at Te Manawa.
When visitors arrive, one of the first things they see is a vintage ambulance parked in the foyer. It’s part of a new exhibition in partnership with Palmerston North Hospital, celebrating that institution’s 125th birthday.
The ambulance is a replica, built up from an original 1930s Chevrolet chassis by vintage car enthusiast Brian Wilton. Over hundreds of hours of research and construction, he has recreated an ambulance of 80 years ago, right down to the medical supplies in the back.
The vehicle is joined by other items from the hospital, such as medical equipment, photographs and uniforms. Saws and tonsil guillotines in glittering steel provide a glimpse at healthcare in the “olden days” and gratitude that things have come a long way since then!
Just down the hall, the Atrium has been transformed into the Reflection Room. November 11 is Armistice Day, marking 100 years since the end of World War I. Special drapes are being covered in poppies made by the community.
The poppy was adopted as a symbol of remembrance in the early 1920s. Visitors are invited to make their own poppies using the materials provided and add them to the collection. The installation is a space where visitors can reflect and remember the New Zealand men and women who were lost in the war.
On November 22 the museum opens Santa’s Cave for its centenary year. Te Manawa has worked hard to make sure this is its best year ever. The museum is grateful to the community, whose support every year means this local treasure can continue to delight visitors of all ages.
Brian Wilton’s ambulance in the Te Manawa foyer.