One issue I'd take with his korero is that the competition did not decline through a lack of industry interest (I doubt the farming sector knew or cared about Te Ahuwhenua). Rather it was a combination of financial pressures on marae to host events and Ministerial racism.
This is revealed in the archives, most of which sit in the Wellington offices although some are also in Auckland, and Te Puni Kokiri/Ministry of Maori Development also hold some.
I published some of the correspondence on this in a paper published in the MAI Review, linked here.
|Bill Swinton receiving the inaugural Te Ahuwhenua Trophy|