Tōtara Reserve is the Manawatū-Whanganui Region’s only regional park. Situated north of Ashhurst, its 340 hectares includes ecologically rare habitat remnants and large tracts of indigenous forest bordered by the Pohangina River. There is a rich history of use by local iwi. Facilities include a network of walking tracks, many picnic spots and campgrounds located beside the river.

Long before Pākehā arrived and settled in the area, Tōtara Reserve has a long history of use by Māori. Rangitāne o Manawatū and Rangitāne o Tamaki nui-a-Rua are recognised as valued partners and guardians of the values of the reserve. We are committed to ensuring a mātauranga Māori strategy for the reserve is developed and embedded throughout our management of the reserve.

The Tōtara Reserve Advisory Board requested a review of the current state of the park and its facilities to identify immediate needs and fresh long-term aspirations. An external consultant helped us to identify key challenges and opportunities. A review of the reserve management plan is part of this process, while also being a requirement of the Reserves Act 1977.

We are seeking initial feedback from you to help shape our decision making for the next decade. The reserve management plan is composed of four sections, and we want feedback for each of these. You do not have to answer all survey questions, but please complete both part 1 and part 2.

While all responses will be considered when shaping the new management plan, final management direction will be subject to funding and direction from the Tōtara Reserve Advisory Board.

You will have a further opportunity to contribute your thoughts once the draft management plan has been written and made available for final feedback.