Maori Tip halts Roadworks

Discovery of a pile of empty pipi shells has halted roadworks for three months while iwi are consulted:

The discovery of a cluster of pipi shells has halted a million-dollar roading project.

Archaeologists and iwi representatives have inspected the midden of shellfish remains, which were found in the side of a hill about 3km from McLaren Falls Rd.

The cluster of shells was found about a month ago by contractors who were undertaking work to make McLaren Falls Rd wider and safer for vehicles.

The finding has set back the completion of the project, angering some residents.

Inroads Capital Works manager Bryan Crean said consent to continue work on the site could take up to about three months, while archaeologists and representatives from Ngati Hangarau inspected the find, which he described as “a midden of archeological material”.

For the dimwitted a midden is a fancy word for a rubbish dump:

A midden, (also kitchen midden or shell heap) is an old dump for domestic waste which may consist of animal bone, human excrement, botanical material, vermin, shells, sherds, lithics (especially debitage), and other artifacts and ecofacts associated with past human occupation.

Let’s hope it’s not the leftovers from a Taniwha’s lunch, or the whole project’s a goner.

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

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