Pacific Islands Memorial – Pukeahu Park

Bronze memorial in the shape of a conch shell covered in flowers

The Pacific Islands Memorial, Te Reo Hotunui o Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa, represents New Zealand’s enduring friendship with the Pacific Islands and the service of Pacific Islanders in support of New Zealand in the two world wars and later conflicts.

A joint initiative by Ministry for Culture and Heritage, the Ministry for Pacific Peoples and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, with support from the New Zealand Institute of Architects, the dedication of the Memorial took place on 27 March 2021 at Pukeahu National War Memorial Park.


Designed by artist Michel Tuffery MNZM and Herriot, Melhuish and O’Neil Architects, it depicts a bronze conch shell, a symbol deeply rooted in Pacific cultures, which has a patina finish with remembrance poppies. An expert judging panel selected the design following a national design competition.

Man talking into microphone wearing Pacific flower crown

Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture and Heritage/Mark Tantrum Photography

Artist Michel Tuffery speaking at the dedication of the Pacific Islands Memorial.

Named Te Reo Hotunui o Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa – The deep sigh of the Pacific, it recalls the conch shell left in the Arras Tunnels by Kuki Airani (Cook Island) soldiers of the New Zealand Tunnelling Company and the New Zealand (Māori) Pioneer Battalion, who were stationed beneath the town of Arras during 1916 to 1918.

More information

Pukeahu National War Memorial Park – Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture and Heritage

Pacific Islands Memorial dedication – Pukeahu National War Memorial Park Facebook

New Zealand's military links with the Pacific (PDF, 136KB)

Pacific Islanders in the NZEF – NZHistory

Pacific Islands and New Zealand – Te Ara The Encyclopedia of New Zealand

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