Latest News & Public Notices

Responsible Freedom Camping and Wharf Ambassadors - keeping our wharves and communities safe

15 December 2020

To keep people safe on some of our busiest wharves at Whitianga and Whangamatā over the summer we’ll have Wharf Ambassadors. They will help those fishing and doing bombs keep to their designated areas.

We’re expecting an even higher number of visitors to the Coromandel than usual, with lots of people fishing—and jumping—off our wharves and Whangamatā and Whitianga are popular spots

Wharf Warden shirtOur Wharf Ambassador initiative started in Whangamatā in 2016 and this year we've recruited for Whitianga.

The wharf is a shared space between people tying up their boats, those fishing and those jumping and swimming, with zones for each activity. Our Ambassadors are there to keep everyone safe.

There are eight Wharf Ambassadors (formerly called Wharf Wardens) that have been hired by our Council and they will be on duty between Saturday 26 December and Saturday 6 February.

If you have any questions or need help, our Wharf Ambassadors will be easy to spot – look for the Wharf Warden shirts (pictured left). While they're not lifeguards, they're all trained in first aid should you need assistance.

While you're out enjoying the summer, make sure you follow the rules of the wharf:

  • Listen to the advice of our Ambassadors.
  • Make sure you stay in your area – don’t jump in where there are fishing lines in the water or boats pulling in/out.
  • Be respectful to other wharf users.
  • Check before you jump – someone might be below.
  • Check the tide – too low is no good.
  • Keep a close eye on your children.
  • SLIP SLOP SLAP – protect yourself from the sun.
  • Wear a sun hat.

Meet our Whitianga Wharf Ambassadors

Whitianga Wharf Aerial

(Photo: Aerial view of Whitianga Wharf)

Heather Campbell - Heather is from Kuaotunu. As well as being a Wharf Ambassador, she will work in the afternoons as a Freedom Camping Ambassador.

Richard Shelford-Woodcock – Many people already know Richard by his other name, ‘Chocky’.

Di Dobbs – Di is from Katikati. She'll be staying with friends in Cooks Beach, but she is looking to move permanently to Whitianga.

Milla Anderson – Milla is from Whitianga and currently in Year 10 at the Mercury Bay Area School. She usually works in a local shop but has taken the summer off to try something new and get some more experience as a Wharf Ambassador.

Jordan Richmond – Jordan has just finished year 12 at St Peters in Cambridge, but home is Whitianga. He has been a constant wharf jumper over the years and looks forward to teaching others how to do this safely.

Meet our Whangamatā Wharf Ambassadors

Whangamata Wharf

(Photo: Whangamatā Wharf)

Bob Storey – You may recognise Bob as he has been a Wharf Ambassador previously. He's ready to get out there again this year to support wharf users.

Henry Cunningham – Henry is studying at Otago University. Although he's from Auckland, he spends his summers in the Coromandel and wants to give back to the community by being a Wharf Ambassador.

Michael Mellett – Michael studies Law and Commerce in Auckland. He's previously spent time in Whangamatā with Henry (above). He is excited to help keep people safe on the wharf this summer.

Visiting the Coromandel

Whangamata view lookout






If you're visiting the Coromandel this summer, visit our website to find out more about some of our greatests beaches and fishing spots. 

You can also find out more about visiting the Coromandel on the Destination Coromandel website here

Responsible Freedom Camping Ambassadors

Responsible freedom camping ambassadors

(Photo: Responsible Camping Ambassadors (left to right) - Liz Thomas, Heather Campbell, Brent Hallam, Phil Andrew, and our Council's Bylaws Compliance Team Leader Ken Ward. Not pictured: Joke Streukens and Debbie Coyle). 

As well as Wharf Ambassadors we also have Responsible Camping Ambassadors. If you are planning to take your campervan out to enjoy the scenery this summer – keep an eye out for our people.

Our six Responsible Camping Ambassadors are helping freedom camping visitors find the right places to stay and providing them with information on where to find public toilets and rubbish and recycling disposal facilities.

“With the borders still closed to overseas tourists, we’re expecting Kiwis to show up in even greater numbers in the Coromandel than usual years,” says our Mayor Sandra Goudie. “Here to give freedom campers a big Coromandel welcome will be our Ambassadors to help make sure our visitors have an enjoyable experience and leave our special place the same way they found it.”

You can meet our Responsible Camping Ambassadors here

If you want to know more about Freedom Camping in the Coromandel District and where it is allowed, read here

Freedom Camping Bylaw

Freedom Camping GraphicThis summer we're reviewing our Freedom Camping Bylaw, to make sure our freedom camping sites are in the right places You can read our proposals and make a submission online on our website.