One of New Zealand’s oldest and rarest ships has been returned to the Northland town where it was built, in an emotional day for locals who worked so hard for her return.
Daring, which was built in 1863, was discovered three years ago on Auckland's Muriwai Beach after it was exposed by shifting sands.
The 17-metre schooner was beached in 1865 during wild gales, then was buried and forgotten. It is set to become a museum piece at Mangawhai Historic Village.
John Street of the Daring Restoration Charitable Trust was one of the men behind Daring’s return and says the project will cost a total of $4 million, with crowdfunding providing the majority of that.
“A great day for Mangawhai,” an emotional Street told the crowd who welcomed the ship back this morning.
“I don’t think half of Mangawhai realise how important this ship is today. This is one of the biggest stories in New Zealand,” he said to 1 NEWS.
“Because we’ve been working behind the scenes, we haven’t been out in everybody’s face telling them about it. A lot of people would even be surprised that it’s even in Mangawhai.”
Daring has spent the two-and-a-half years since being recovered at Hobsonville, but Street said there is more restoration and preservation work to be done.
“Exciting for three more years, we have to stay alive for three more years to see it happen,” a laughing Street said.