The volunteer team and I have been working hard over the past few years to document the collection here, and get lists up on the Methodist Church website under our Archives tab on the site.
This year, a list of all baptism registers held here was posted, and we have just included a descriptive list of Taranaki and Wanganui parish and church records held (we will be posting details for other areas of NZ as they are completed). We hope this will give researchers a greater understanding of the records available here.
Looking ahead to next year, we hope that now we have received the building consent for our storage extension, that this will now happen after 5 years of waiting! However the 4 September earthquake has caused difficulties in us getting a builder.
We will advise of closure dates as soon as we know – the present storage area is going to be sealed to prevent dust etc, and the Reading Room will be used to store furniture, shelving and boxes of the collection which don’t have homes, so we will be completely closed when the storage development happens, rather than running a reduced service.
When this happens, the volunteer team are going to divert their activities to tackling the enormous pile of handwritten indexes, lists etc so we will be able to include even more information on the website once it is transferred to electronic form.
On the topic of our volunteer team, on 14 December we farewell Esther Trim, who at the age of 90, is retiring after 21 years of volunteering. One of the main projects she has worked on recently, documenting and boxing the parish records held in the Archives, involved her filling over 800 boxes of archives.
Methodist Church of New Zealand Archives