A petition has been started to restore the cross which sat on top of Puketapapa/Mt Roskill for almost sixty years. The structure which was lit up at Christmas in the shape of a cross, and at Easter in the shape of a star, was erected by local churches and the Mt Roskill Borough Council around 1960.
It is considered by many locals to be part of the heritage and local identity of the area, and an enduring symbol of hope and goodwill to passers-by and visitors for generations.
Although now known for being one of the most ethnically-diverse areas in the country, Mt Roskill was once dubbed the ‘Bible belt’. In the late 1980s the borough had 26 churches for its 35,000 residents.
While intended to only be erected at Christmas and Easter, an oversight at the time the super city was established in 2010 saw the cross remain year-round until its removal in June 2015 as part of the decisions made over Auckland's mountains by the Maunga Authority.
Then, in March last year the plinth and pole at the tihi (summit) of the mountain, which provided the central structure for the cross and star, was removed as part of the work to reinstate the tihi and return it to a fully grassed area.
The petition, which has been instigated by local residents Ella Kumar, Jonathan Subritzky, Fonoti Luke Gates and Peter Potatau, asks for the Maunga Authority to grant the return of Mount Roskill's cross/star to the summit of Mt Roskill at Christmas and Easter.
To sign the online Change.org petition please search for “Restore Mt Roskill’s Cross”. There are also a number of physical copies to sign in church foyers across Mt Roskill, and also in the offices of City Property Management in the Blockhouse Bay village (557 BHB Rd). The petition team looks forward to sharing further updates on their Facebook page as Easter draws near.