Chinese Garden gifted rare pagoda ahead of milestone

Dunedin Chinese Garden Trust chairman Malcolm Wong looks at the rare ceramic pagola given to the garden earlier this year. Photo: Stephen Jaquiery
Dunedin Chinese Garden Trust chairman Malcolm Wong looks at the rare ceramic pagoda given to the garden earlier this year. Photo: Stephen Jaquiery
The gift of a rare ceramic pagoda, photographic exhibitions, and several public talks are among a host of events celebrating the Dunedin Chinese Garden's 10th anniversary, this month.

A five-strong delegation from the Dunedin garden's sister garden, the Shanghai Yu Garden, will arrive later this month.

Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull said the southern hemisphere's only authentic Chinese scholar's garden was celebrating a ''major milestone'' this month.

The origins of this ''very special place'' had reflected a desire to celebrate the city's Chinese heritage and also to ''mark the important sister city relationship with Shanghai''.

The garden had remained ''an important symbol of that sister city bond'', and was called Lan Yuan, or, in English, ''A Garden of Distant Longing'', Mr Cull said.

The Dunedin trust raised funds for and built the garden, which was given to the Dunedin City Council to manage on behalf of the city, and was officially opened in September 2008.

The ceramic pagoda, about one metre high, was given to the garden this year, and is believed to be the only one of its kind in the southern hemisphere.

It was given by the late Courtney Archer and his friend, Tan Chen, who lives in Rangiora.

Mr Archer had undertaken humanitarian work in China, after World War 2.

An exhibition of photographs of Yu Yuan will be on show at the Dunedin Garden from September 15.

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