Waikato Coastal Database

Ministry of Transport Files - Thames

1. Identification information

Data Collection Date
These files from the Ministry of Transport deal mainly with the administrative aspects of structures, reclamations, power, telephone, and pipeline crossings of waterways around the marine foreshore and in navigable rivers and lakes. There is not a lot of environmental information in these files but occasionally there is a copy of a report that deals with the environmental aspects of a structure. In about 1964 the Ministry of Transport (MOT) took over the role of licensing structures on the foreshore from the Marine Department (MD) and employed the Ministry of Works and Development (MWD) as its environmental advisers. Reports from the MWD therefore contain much of the environmental information available in these files. Purpose: This dataset provides a brief discussion of coastal information contained within historical Ministry of Transport files, collected during a review commissioned by Environment Waikato as part of the Coastal Database project. The Ministry of Transport (MoT) was responsible for the administration of structures in the CMA and in navigable rivers and lakes from 1964 to 1997. These files are now held in Environment Waikato’s archives. These files contain useful information on the history and legal status of existing coastal structures.
54/1/722: Slipway widening, Thames Harbour 1982. No environmental information. 54/2/131: Slipway Thames Angling Club. Kereta, Thames Coast. Starts 1958 Marine Dept M4/4833. Slipway on north side of Otakaeo Stream. Changes the title to boat ramp and obtained a report of Lands and Survey Department. This is not on file. First license 1959 second in 1971. Lands and Survey reference 16/2020. The club asked permission to relay the upper part of the ramp as it was getting inundated in shingle moving along shore. This was approved MOT, MWD. 54/2/609: Jetty Te Mata Creek Thames 1973. Thames County file J8. No environmental information. 54/2/618: Jetty Te Mata Creek Thames. Linked to 54/2/609. No environmental information. 54/4/252 Reclamation Firth of Thames 1970. Thames County Council file 460/3. MWD Hamilton 96/094,000. TCDC V4/-/1. Noted that a major problem with reclamation in the Thames area is the depth of unconsolidated mud on the sea floor. Sea walls protecting the reclamation sunk as much as 1.5 m, necessitating more construction on top, thus adding more weight and hastening the sinking. Another feature was the uneven nature of the subsidence and likely breakages of service pipes such as sewers and storm water pipes. A Ministry of Works report highlighted shortcomings of the reclamation as poor material selection and insufficiently high sea walls (by 0.7-0.9 m). Murray North and Partners reported on the stability of the area 1983. 54/4/202: Reclamation Kauaeranga River 1969 No environmental information. 54/27/178: Aerial power line crossing Te Mate Creek Thames 1979. Nothing of interest. 43/64/6/1: Reclamation, Thames Borough Council Volume 1 1971. Paeroa MWD noted problems with land settlement after reclamation. Repeat of file 54/4/252 above. Technical report on consolidation of reclamation works (authored by Murray North and Partners) in 1981. 43/64/6/3: Reclamation, Thames Borough Council 1972. No new environmental information. 43/64/9: Harbours works, Thames 1968. The file is about the administrative side of managing marinas, moorings etc. for boating. 43/64/9/3: Reclamation, 105 Burke Street Thames 105 Acres Volume 1. m 1970. Details administrative costs. 43/64/9/4: Marina Thames Sailing Club 1974, Volume 1. The Thames Sailing Club took over Shortland Wharf, which was in a degraded state. They created a series of jetties to tie boats up to and tidied up the access. The marina beside the Kauaeranga River was approved on the basis that there be no construction that would restrict flood flows. No environmental information in file. 54/1/202: Thames County Council proposed marina. Nothing of interest. 54/1/453: Marina Thames Harbour. Kauaeranga River. Nothing useful. 54/2/700: Slipway Kauaeranga River. No environmental information. 54/27/179: Aerial power line crossing Kauaeranga River 1979 Nothing of interest.
Study Types
  • Literature Review
  • Consents and Structures
  • Coastal Hazards
  • Coastal Development and Public Spaces
  • Sediments
  • Shoreline Change
  • Consents and Structures
  • Consents and Structures

2. Contact information

Commissioning Agencies
  • Ministry of Transport
Contact Organisations
  • Environment Waikato

3. Spatial information

Geographic Coverage
Grid Coordinates
  • Name
    NZMG Easting
    NZMG Northing
    East Coast Inner FoT: Waihou River to Tararu Stream (including Kauranga River and Thames Township)
    East Coast

4. Data acquisition information

Collection Date
1960 to 1980
Frequency of collection: Infrequent/irregular

5. Data quality information

Known Limitations
Gaps in collection: Only includes information available on specific files. Important to note that Ministry of Works files contain further environmental information relating to these files. Completeness: Many files and pieces of information from the files are missing. Many engineer's reports are missing from the files held by Environment Waikato.

6. Distribution information

Physical files.
Historical background on development of the area.
This data is publicly available in EW archives. Sensitivity/Confidentiality: No confidentiality – public information.

7. Status information

Data Status
Files closed. Include a note where this record continues after end date of file where possible – e.g. Dept of Conservation files. These files have been continued where appropriate but have been amalgamated and given a new file number by DOC making sourcing more recent information difficult.

8. Metadata information

General Notes
Additional comments: By-law Development and the County Councils Control of the foreshore, lakeshore and riverbeds was vested in the Marine Department (MD) and then later in the Ministry of Transport (MOT). As roads improved access to the coast and lakes increased and the MOT vested its powers in the local County Councils to enable them to create by laws to control the use of these areas while the MOT retained overall control and was responsible for vetting any proposed by law. Jetties and Wharves There were two types of jetties and wharves; those built for catching Whitebait, and the fishing boat jetty. As the local fishing industry developed, there was a steady increase in requests for licenses for jetties to load and unload fishing boats. Records in the files indicate that there was either a shortage of hardwood for jetty piles or the locals preferred to rely on piles made from Manuka or Kanuka. This is especially noticeable of the piles used for fishing boat jetties. As the fishing fleet grew so did the demand for fish processing facilities on shore. The increased number of requests for jetties for commercial fishing probably reflects the increased government investment in the fishing industry in the 1960s and 1970s. Boat ramps These appear associated with two activities. Commercial fishing or the storage of a boat used occasionally. As roads improved and boat-building materials became lighter the trailed boat became more popular. This in turn put pressure on local County Councils to either build boat ramps or license boat ramps to be built by for fishing or Boat clubs to access the water. After a burst of activity in the 1960s and 1970s many clubs were wound up leaving the structure the responsibility of the local Council. Slipways Slipway installation commenced from the earliest of settlements because most of the early communities were serviced by boat and needed repair and maintenance facilities locally. There were also some slipways constructed by local boating and sailing clubs. Related information: All these files are related to Ministry of Works and Development files as the MWD was the adviser to MOT.
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