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Memorial seat vanishes from reserve

Flagstaff Team

Missing… Gabrielle Harrop where the seat with a plaque in memory of her father used to be

A Devonport family is aggrieved that a memorial bench and plaque they paid for has vanished from Windsor Reserve.

Gabrielle Harrop and her family contributed towards the cost of a seat and paid for a plaque to be placed in memory of her father Jack Maher, about 20 years ago.

The seat was located opposite the library and facing the Windsor Reserve playground.

“My dad loved watching the children play and had taken his own grandchildren there to play when they were little so it was a great spot for a seat,” Maher says.

Eighteen months ago, Harrop realised the seat had gone missing.

She contacted Auckland Council, which was unable to provide any information except recommending that she contact council contractor Fulton Hogan.

“I had correspondence with a very nice-sounding man, Wayne Branks, who said he was sure we could find out what the story was,” says Harrop.

“However, after a few emails, he said he was very sorry he couldn’t help as it was situated in a [council] parks [team] reserve.”

“I felt this was very poor on the part of whoever was responsible for removing it not to contact us about it as they must have had our details.”

“The council seems to lose quite a lot of information so maybe that’s what happened.”

The Flagstaff contacted Auckland Council last week and was told that Community Facilities staff would investigate, but no further information could be supplied before press-time.

Harrop and her mother, Ella Maher, are still hopeful the seat will be returned, as she and her mother loved to visit the spot.

Agnes McCormack, Auckland Council head of maintenance said: “While we have been unable to locate the missing seat, council is working with the family to ensure this seat and plaque is replaced as soon as possible.”

This article originally appeared in the July 12 edition of The Devonport Flagstaff. Download PDF.