Rodney County roll of honour

Rodney County roll of honour Rodney County roll of honour Rodney County roll of honour

The Rodney County First World War roll of honour was unveiled during the Rodney County Queen carnival in January 1918. It was then placed in the Warkworth Town Hall, reportedly being decked with wreaths during a ‘Soldiers’ Day’ banquet held there on 21 July 1919.

The roll of honour consisted of eight six-foot high (1.8m) oak panels combined to form an octagonal structure. Each panel was headed with the hand-painted name of a local community: Kaipara, Leigh, Matakana, Puhoi, Streamlands, Warkworth, Whangaripo, and Wellsford. The names of men from each community who had enlisted for active service were listed below.

The geographical divisions were evidently decided by the County Queen carnival committee (Whangaripo [sic] included Pakiri and Tomarata). The names listed under each locality varied in number, eg. 33 for Leigh, 51 for Kaipara and 102 for Wellsford. It was originally intended to include the date that each man entered camp; ultimately, this detail was omitted, although the fates of those who gave their lives were added in a third column (‘killed in action’/‘died in camp’/‘died at sea’/‘discharged wounded’/‘discharged ill’).

The roll of honour stood in the Town Hall for about fifty years before being moved to the memorial library, the museum and the Warkworth & Districts RSA. Exactly when each shift took place is unclear, but the roll of honour was ‘rediscovered’ in the Warkworth RSA club’s basement in 2014.

It was rededicated in the newly renovated Warkworth Town Hall during a Passchendaele commemoration service on 12 October 2017.

Sources: ‘The Carnival’, Rodney & Otamatea Times, 23/1/1918, p. 4; ‘The Carnival: Huge Patriotic Success’, Rodney & Otamatea Times, 30/1/1918, p. 4;; ‘Rodney County Peace Celebrations’, Rodney & Otamatea Times, 30/7/1919, p. 4; H.J. Keys, Mahurangi: The Story of Warkworth, Warkworth, 1954, pp. 218, 238-9; ‘Warkworth Town Hall fundraising on target’, Mahurangi Matters, 15/12/2014; Warkworth & Districts RSA Newsletter, 12/10/2017.

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