National Anthem

God of Nations at Thy feet,
In the bonds of love we meet,
Hear our voices, we entreat,
God defend our free land.
Guard Pacific's triple star
From the shafts of strife and war,
Make her praises heard afar,
God defend New Zealand.
Men of every creed and race,
Gather here before Thy face,
Asking Thee to bless this place,
God defend our free land.
From dissension, envy, hate,
And corruption guard our State,
Make our country good and great,
God defend New Zealand.
Peace, not war, shall be our boast,
But, should foes assail our coast,
Make us then a mighty host,
God defend our free land.
Lord of battles in Thy might,
Put our enemies to flight,
Let our cause be just and right,
God defend New Zealand.
Let our love for Thee increase,
May Thy blessings never cease,
give us plenty, give us peace,
God defend our free land.
From dishonour and from shame,
Guard our country's spotless name,
Crown her with immortal fame,
God defend New Zealand.
May our mountains ever be
Freedoms ramparts on the sea,
Make us faithful unto Thee,
God defend our free land.
Guide her in the nations' van,
Preaching love and truth to man,
Working out Thy glorious plan,
God defend New Zealand.

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Waitakere City

Waitakere City is New Zealand's fifth largest city, with an annual growth of about 2%. It is part of the Auckland region, and is incorporated in the Auckland metropolitan area. Most residents live near the city's eastern borders with the Waitemata Harbour and neighbouring Auckland City. The forest-covered Waitakere Ranges dominate the city's western skyline, rising from the rugged surf beaches of the Tasman Sea to an altitude of over 400 metres.

The name came originally from a Māori chief and was applied to a village near the northern boundary of the current city and later to the county that covered much of the current city.

Administrative structure

Waitakere City was formed by the amalgamation of Waitemata City with the boroughs of Henderson, New Lynn, and Glen Eden in 1989's nationwide re-organisation of local government. The elected Council consists of Mayor Bob Harvey and 14 councillors representing the four wards. Each ward also has an elected community board that considers local issues. The ward boundaries are currently under review.

Grotere kaart weergeven

Geography of the four wards

Henderson Ward

This urban ward contains the old Henderson borough as well as the suburbs of Glendene, Te Atatu South, and Te Atatu Peninsula (formerly Te Atatu North). There are 40,086 residents (2001). It is located immediately to the west of Auckland city, some 10 kilometres from the city centre, along the western shores of the Waitemata Harbour and its southwestern arm, the Whau River.

Massey Ward

Although this area is principally urban, it also has some farms and lifestyle blocks in the north and west. The ward contains the suburbs of Whenuapai, Hobsonville, West Harbour, Massey, Ranui, and Henderson North. It has a population of 51,369 (2001 census). It is located to the north of the Henderson Ward, along the Waitemata's northwestern shore, and includes one of New Zealand's largest concentrations of former military bases, with former large army and air force stations within the ward.

New Lynn Ward

Centered on the old boroughs of New Lynn and Glen Eden, it also contains the suburbs of Kelston, Green Bay, Titirangi, Kaurilands, Waima, and Woodlands Park. The ward has a population of 49,845 (2001). New Lynn Ward is to the south of Henderson Ward, and extends to the shore of the Manukau Harbour at its southern end. New Lynn itself is 10 kilometres southwest of Auckland city centre.

Waitakere Ward

This ward is by far the largest in area as it encompasses the sparsely populated Waitakere Ranges, as well as some of the urban fringes as the city expands westward into former orchards and farms. The population 27,450 (2001) is the smallest of the wards, but it is also the fastest-growing. It encompasses the suburbs, villages and localities of Swanson, Henderson Valley, Sunnyvale, Oratia, Waiatarua, Laingholm, Parau, Cornwallis, Huia, Whatipu, Karekare, Piha, Anawhata, Bethells / Te Henga, and Waitakere township. Many of these have volunteer fire brigades to protect their communities from the summer bush fires. This ward lies to the west of the three other wards, and extends to the north as well. Its northern end, around Muriwai, is also the furthest part of Waitakere from Auckland city centre, lying some 30 kilometres to the northwest of it.

The walking tracks and sights of the Waitakere Ranges attract thousands from the Auckland region in suitable weather, as do the black-sand surf beaches of Piha, Karekare and Bethells. These beaches are notoriously dangerous for surfers and swimmers, however, and great care needs to be taken to avoid their treacherous rips.

Piha Karekare Bethells