Political Views on Multi-Purpose Indoor Centre

Still deciding who to vote for in the election?

Well perhaps the response from some of the East Coast candidates about their thoughts on the Indoor Centre proposal will help to sway your thinking!

To get this project over the line we will need a strong advocate in parliament. Here’s what some of the candidates had to say.

Scroll down to view the full statements, that are in no particular order.


First we asked, Do you support the development of a multi-purpose indoor centre in Tūranga-nui-a-Kiwa/Gisborne (and feel free to comment as to why or why not?)

Dana Kirkpatrick: “I do support the indoor sports concept for Gisborne in a cohesive and coherent way that builds in the investment already made in sporting facilities. Having worked in sport for many years I am fully supportive of anything that improves the health and well-being of our people. This region has a huge number of priorities to work through in the short to medium term and whilst this seems like a nice to have it would bring many many other benefits.”

Tamati Coffey: “I’m 100% in support of a new multi purpose indoor centre. It would build on our Government’s $40M investment into the Kiwa Pools, the rebuild of the Midway Surf Club and the new skate park. More stuff for our young people to do – I’m super supportive of.”

Jordan Walker: “Absolutely – I tautoko your remark, that these sorts of developments do have significant social and wellbeing return on our communities. I think that the upgrade of the skatepark shows exactly that. When we give our rangatahi positive spaces to interact with and engage, that’s good for them, and equitable – we’re offering positive growth opportunities. I am dubious about the idea of this complex going to Waikirikiri Park, I would want to know if it would have any impact on our low-income whānau in their already precarious living situations in that area.”

Michael Howe: “ACT believes in local democracy and that local communities know what is best for their community, not a top down directive from central government. Therefore, if the local community think the development of a multi-purpose indoor centre is what is needed, ACT would support this initiative.”


We also asked, If so, what support could you give to the development of an Indoor Centre if you were elected Member of Parliament for the East Coast electorate?

Dana Kirkpatrick: “I will advocate for this in line with the list of priorities Already before us. But I do have a background in creative ideas so let’s keep in touch.”

Tamati Coffey: “I will be a staunch advocate for this kaupapa until it’s delivered.”

Jordan Walker: “Keeping in mind my limited capacity to promise anything (given I’m pushing a Green Party vote), what I can comment on is our parties Climate Safe Communities policy, and how the Kaupapa of a multipurpose indoor centre aligns with it in future planning, long-term thinking for the environment and our communities. Within the Climate Safe Communities policy is the potential of a new $750m fund over three years that will create space for nature and protect towns and cities from flooding (paid for with a wealth tax). As a result this will ensure that our towns and cities will have safe places for our children to play and move around safely; more green spaces that provide a place to relax and protect us from flooding. In addition to this future planning is the advocacy for more carbon efficient transport infrastructure such as buses and trains, with services like free dental just a safe walk or bike ride away. We know the solutions. The only obstacles are political. This policy would respond more as a buffer and support around the idea of a multi-purpose indoor centre, but in my view has the capacity to work cohesively with the project. Personally I tautoko any amplification of social and wellbeing return on communities, especially low-income, so would be personally interested to lend support in whatever capacity I had.”

Michael Howe: “ACT will repeal and replace the Resource Management Act, therefore will make it faster and cheaper to be able to develop the indoor centre. We would be able to ensure resource consent would be a faster process, with less red tape. Our materials register, would also mean there is more competition to get the materials at a competitive price. We would give back ½ of the GST to the local region from the cost of the new build, to be spent on infrastructure in the local area. We also believe in PPP (private, and public partnerships) to assist with the overall build costs. These have been successful across New Zealand.”


We received no response from the NZ First Party.

2023 Titirangi Mt. Everest Challenge

It’s that time of year again! Registrations for the Titirangi Mt. Everest Challenge open on Monday 25 September. 

The event starts Monday 2 October and ends on Sunday 19 November.  

To celebrate the opening of the challenge, Sport Gisborne Tairāwhiti are running a group hikoi to the summit on Monday 2 October at 6.15am. This will be followed by a karakia, sunrise yoga or bodyweight cardio workout, weather dependent, and a free breakfast. Coffee will also be available to purchase. 

The iconic event of Tairāwhiti gets participants of all ages and abilities taking part in the seven-week challenge where individuals or teams walk, run or cycle up Titirangi 68 times, which is the equivalent to the height of Mount Everest. Participants can use alternative peaks wherever they are located around Aotearoa and convert the climbs using the Strava app or Topographic online. 

Throughout the challenge, there will be pop up events and prizes to giveaway. Keep an eye out for the Sport Gisborne Tairāwhiti Facebook page for more details. 

“This is the eleventh year that the event has been held.  This event is a personal journey to challenge yourself to reach a goal.  Year on year the stories of people doing more than they ever believed possible is what makes this challenge so special” said Sport Gisborne Tairāwhiti Events Advisor Debbie Hutchings. 

Thank you to Ngāti Oneone, Sean and Fiona Shivnan, Gisborne District Council, and ProTraffic for Traffic Management for the ongoing support so that the event can go ahead for the community. 

The challenge aims to create awareness for bowel cancer. Donations received through the Challenge website will support patients and whānau in Tairāwhiti who have been affected by a bowel cancer diagnosis through the Gisborne East Coast Cancer Society.   

For more information and to register for the free event, click here.

2023 Spring Holiday Programme

Gisborne Gymnastics Club

Monday 25 September – Thursday 28th September: 9am – 12pm, and 12pm – 3pm 

Friday 29 September 12pm – 3pm 

Monday 2 October – Thursday 5 October: 9am – 12pm, and 12pm – 3pm 

Friday 6 October: 12pm – 3pm 

Ages 5 – 13 

$30 per session or $55 full day 

Registration required, here https://gisbornegymnastics.com/holiday-program 


Central Football

3-Day Holiday Programme 

Monday 25 September – Wednesday 27 September 

8.30am – 3pm 

Venue TBC 

6 – 12 year boys and girls 



Girls Only Fun Day 

Thursday 28 September 

8.30am – 3pm 

Venue TBC 

6 – 12 year girls 



Futsal Holiday Programme 

Monday 2nd October – Wednesday 4th October 

8.30am – 3pm 

Venue TBC 

8 – 12 year boys and girls 



Street Football Day 

Thursday 5 October 

8.30am – 3pm 

Venue TBC 

6 – 12 year boys and girls 


Register for any via MYCOMET 


Bubble Wrap Fun Day

9am Thursday 28 September – 4pm Friday 29 September 

Sessions are: 9am – 12pm, 1pm – 4pm, 9am – 12pm and 1pm – 4pm 

Gisborne Event Centre, Gisborne showgrounds 

1 – 12 years 

Purchase tickets here. 



Gisborne Tennis Club

Monday 25 – Thursday 5 October 

9am – 12pm or 1pm – 4pm 

Gisborne Tennis Club, 418 Childers Road 

8  – 12 Years old 

Week 1: $70 per child (¾) days, $40 (2 days), $30 (1 day) 

Week 2: $70 per child (¾) days, $40 (2 days), $30 (1 day) 

Non-members additional $20 

Register here. 

Calls for an Indoor Centre Gain Momentum

As the region looks to accelerate its recovery from Cyclone Gabrielle, many in the community are sending a message that any recovery support provided needs to include funding for an Indoor Centre in Tūranganui-a-Kiwa/Gisborne. The supporters of an indoor centre are stating that the region needs a facility with at least three-four indoor courts, amenities, and other shared spaces. Based on facilities recently completed in other regions, the supporters believe it could be done for a price tag of around $15-$20 million. 

The indoor centre would cater for sports such as basketball, volleyball, netball, futsal, pickleball, rugby, as well as for a range of other recreational and community groups and services. Many of these sports and recreational activities are experiencing significant growth at both a regional and national level. 

“We understand that our region needs significant investment in critical infrastructure such as hosuing, roads, and the safeguarding of water and power supplies. No one is arguing with that. However, there also needs to be investment in well-being facilities that will strengthen the hauora of thousands in our community for many years to come. The two can be done together,” said chief executive of Sport Gisborne Tairāwhiti Stefan Pishief.  

“We’ve seen in the aftermath of covid and the cyclones how vital it was for people to get active and reconnect with one another. This hasn’t just been for physical health reasons – we can’t underestimate the positive impact sport and recreation has on mental health at a time when people need it most. Our community needs positive things to look forward to, and we need to be providing opportunities for our tamariki and rangatahi.” 

“There are a number of urgent facility needs for the region, such as establishing proper facilities for waka ama, finalising the Whakarua Park upgardes, and upgrading Victoria Domain. Yet we are making this call for an indoor centre as Tairāwhiti has the worst indoor court provision in the country per capita, and we are seeing huge issues occuring right now due to this lack of venues.” 

Tairāwhiti has one facility, with one publicly-accessible court at the YMCA for a population of 47,600 people. Some schools hire out their court spaces, but these aren’t always accessible, are over-subscribed, and generally don’t meet regulation and health and safety requirements. 

The issues with the lack of an indoor facilities is already being felt acutely. This year the Gisborne Basketball Association has had to turn away numerous teams at both secondary school and adult level. 

Gisborne Basketball Association Chairperson Kylie Turuwhenua-Tapsell said, “Due to venue capacity constraints and limited and ageing infrastructure at our current courts we had to turn away teams for the Secondary School and Club Ball Leagues this year. It’s heartbreaking to have to limit numbers for our community. On top of this we’re needing to invest our own money and people skills to maintain the spaces we do use, while paying a premium for court hire – it’s taking focus and resources away from potential growth, but is necessary with what we have to work with at the moment. 

There have been instances, like the recent weather we endured, where miniball had to be cancelled and tamariki have missed out because we could only use outdoor courts to cater for the numbers. If we had a three-court facility, we could provide our current three-day format on one evening and then extend the number of teams that can play on alternative days. This would greatly increase opportunities for our rangatahi and hāpori with less of a stretch on volunteers.” 

The development of the indoor centre would mean that clubs could expand programme offerings, increase membership, run local tournaments, host inter-regional tournaments and ultimately give more people more opportunities to be active through quality experiences. 

“We have a really active community here that are really restricted in their options to get out and be active as we don’t have a major sports facility.” said Gisborne Volleyball Club President Adam Harford. “An indoor facility would be an amazing asset for volleyball.” 

An indoor centre is also vital for a range of football activities such as Futsal. Central Football Community Development Officer Lee Smith said “ A quality indoor venue would allow a huge variety of other football related activities to take place, supporting the health and fitness of the wider community and increasing participation, including Walking Football, Freestyle and Street Football, Fitness Football and even Zumba Football.” 

The YMCA also backs the development of an indoor centre.   

“The YMCA believes  it is fundamental that we unite the strengths of Sport Gisborne Tairāwhiti, the Y and other sports association in Gisborne such as netball, basketball etc to demonstrate a strong community partnership during this process,” YMCA president Priscila Muir said. 

“A joint effort for a shared goal — fostering a healthy and active community and encouraging greater participation and support from local residents.” 

The push for an indoor centre is nothing new for Tairāwhiti, with various attempts and initiatives taking place over a couple of decades. More recently, the establishment of an indoor centre was one of a number of facility requirements presented to Central Government as part of a business case/ master plan developed in partnership by the Gisborne District Council, Trust Tairāwhiti, and Sport Gisborne Tairāwhiti. As of yet the funds have not been released by the Government, altghough a tender process initiated by the Gisborne District Council is currently underway to finalise the feasbility study for the centre and it’s location, as a number of viable sites have been identified. 

“Regardless of where the indoor centre ends up, as a community we can make it work. Smaller centres such as Wairoa and Te Kuiti have managed to do it and have created great facilities. Now it is time for Tairāwhiti” said Stefan Pishief. 

A community advocacy group has been formed and will be meeting with key funders, interest groups and regional leaders to push the cause for an indoor centre in the coming months. 

Image supplied by Apollo Projects for inspiration purposes.

Indoor Facilities Advocacy

Calling all tamariki, rangatahi, sports clubs, community groups and organisations, schools and kura, members of the public, sports enthusiasts, parents, caregivers, and basically anyone in Tairāwhiti that would benefit from an indoor centre.  

We’ve created a Facebook page to build advocacy and gain traction on establishing a multi-purpose indoor centre in Tairāwhiti! A location has yet to be decided. The purpose of this page is to show that the demand and need is there for an indoor facility in Tairāwhiti. 

Tairāwhiti has the worst indoor court provision in the country – by a mile! Much smaller towns have far better facilities. We shouldn’t, and will no longer, accept this after years of battling! Yes our region needs significant investment in infrastructure following the cyclone – housing, roads, water etc. However, there also needs to be investment in well-being facilities that will help the hauora of our communities for many years to come. The two can be done together. 

The indoor centre will consist of three-four indoor courts, amenities, and other shared spaces. The price would be around $15-$20 million and would come from a range of funders.  

This centre would cater for sports such as basketball, volleyball, netball, futsal, pickleball as well as a range of other recreation and community groups. It would allow tournaments and events to be held and could be used for other purposes such as an evacuation centre. 

We need your help! Make sure you like the page here, share it with your friends and whānau, and stay up to date with information. 

Together we can make change! 

These images have been kindly supplied by our friends at Apollo Projects Ltd and are for inspirational purposes only. 

2023 Winter School Holiday Programme

Gymnastics Club

Tuesday 11 and Thursday 13 July

Afternoon session: 12pm – 3pm

$30 per child

Register here


Gisborne Trampoline Club

Wednesday 12, Friday 14 and Sunday 16 July

Session 1: 10am – 11.30am

Session 2: 11.30am – 1pm

$10 per child


Poverty Bay Rugby Football Union

Wednesday 5 July

9am – 3pm

$35 (Please bring cash on the day)

Ngatapa Rugby Club

All ages

Register with [email protected]


Poverty Bay Hockey

Year 3 and 4

Tuesday 4 July

9am – 2.45pm



Year 5 and 6

Wednesday 5 July

9am – 2.45pm


Register here.


Central Football

3 day Holiday Programme

Monday 3 – Wednesday 5 July

8.30am – 3pm

Illminster Intermediate

6- 12 old boys and girls



Girls only fun day

Thursday 6 July

8.30am – 3pm

Illminster Intermediate

6 – 14 year old girls



Futsal holiday programme

Monday 10 – Wednesday 12 July

8.30am – 3pm

Illminster Intermediate

8 – 14 year old boys and girls



Street football day

Thursday 20 July

8.30am – 3pm

Illminster Intermediate

6 – 12 year old boys and girls



Register for any via MyComet.


Gisborne Netball Centre

Year 3 and 4

Tuesday 11 and Wednesday 12 July

10am – 2pm

$20 per day


Year 5 and 6

Tuesday 5 and Wednesday 6 July

10am – 2pm

$20 per day


Register online here.


The Bush Kura

Wednesday 5 – Friday 7 July

9 – 13 years old

$20 per child

Register here.