Current Parnell students and Old Parnellians addressed the gathered crowd which included Headmaster Simon Lamb, Chairman of the Board of Governors Simon Power, Board members, President of the KCOCA Julyan Lawry, staff, students and their families.
Also in attendance were former Parnell Housemasters David English (1975-1976) and Stuart Manners (1977-1981).
Mataia Cotterill (Year 12, Parnell) and Mandela McKree Jansen (Year 13 Parnell) opened proceedings with a karakia and mihi, before Parnell House led a rendition of He Hōnore.
Board member and Old Parnellian Hugh Cotterill (Parnell, 1983-87) responded and gave a mihi, before handing over to Parnell Housemaster Harry Wichman, who spoke of the pride the Parnell boys have maintained in their House throughout its transition from Boarding to Day. This is a gradual process that sees the House currently comprised of Boarding and Day students, to enable existing Parnell Boarders to complete their time at King’s together in their House.
A ceremony held in November last year attended by a host of Old Collegians and members of the King’s community recognised this transition. At that event Mr Wichman received the House flag from the boys and kept it safe until it was ceremoniously raised again at Parnell House’s new location on Sunday.
Board member and Old Parnellian John McKay (Parnell, 1983-87) spoke, reminiscing about the experience of boarding in Parnell at its previous location up the drive. After a speech from Headmaster Simon Lamb and the blessing of the House by the Reverend Gareth Walters, Mr Cotterill and Mr McKay cut the ribbon, 2021 Head of Parnell House Waka Wikaire-James raised the flag and the new Parnell House was officially declared open.
A haka performed by the Parnell boys was especially written for the House, with the phrase ‘toto kōura’ or ‘bleed gold’ signifying the House’s colour.
The new Day House brings Parnell closer to the heart of the school, giving both the Boarding and Day boys a place to congregate and bond.
Watch the video to see how the event played out.