Past and present members of Manurewa Playcentre celebrated the centre’s Platinum Jubilee on 5 November.

For 70 years, Manurewa Playcentre has been offering families the chance to play, grow, and learn together, as well as to forge meaningful friendships with other families in the community.

In 1952 Mrs Adams (of Sturdee Road), having found no suitable early childhood education in the area, coordinated the first meeting for the establishment of a local Playcentre.

Its first session was held on the 25th of November 1952, at the Homai Methodist Church Hall on Gibbs and Jellicoe Roads.

It proved so popular that a more permanent venue became necessary. The support of the local community through fundraisers, gala, and working bees saw Manurewa Playcentre move into its own custom building in Lupton Road in 1961.

According to Manurewa Playcentre President, Charlotte Angus, the 70th Jubilee was “an opportunity to gather, reminisce, and celebrate, a reminder of what we’d achieved and what we can achieve, when we work towards a shared goal.”

“With the sun shining, families were able to have a truly spectacular day. The bouncy castle proved irresistible to the youngest members, while the sandpit was a big hit with past tamariki.”

“The face painter transformed tamariki into tigers, dragons and butterflies, and nanas into rainbow fairies.”

“A BBQ luncheon was catered by Alex, one of the centre dads, and a spectacular cake was prepared by Chelsea, a past mum of Manurewa Playcentre,” said Mrs Angus.

A strong sense of whanaungatanga (kinship) throughout the last 70 years has made Manurewa Playcentre an integral part of the community.

Several Manurewa Local Board members and candidates attended in their role as past parents, including past tamaiti and current Manurewa-Papakura Ward councillor Angela Dalton and her mum, Gloria, a past Manurewa Playcentre parent herself.

The centre has a strong bicultural focus in their play and learning, while also reflecting the rich cultural diversity of the Manurewa community.

“This is what makes Manurewa Playcentre a truly magical place and so welcoming to new families,” said Jubilee organiser, Louisa Brown.

Manurewa Playcentre is open Monday to Friday from 9am-12pm and welcomes families with children aged 0-6 years.

You can contact them to arrange a free visit at [email protected].

Manurewa Playcentre dad Neil Angus reads to current tamariki, Carson Cosh (left) and Travis Angus (right).