On Friday 13 October, Dame Patsy and Sir David hosted a showcase of Matairangi Mahi Toi Pasifika artist in residence Lindah Lepou's works. Lindah is a fashion designer whose garments are more artworks than clothing. All Lindah's designs feature Pasifika elements and innovative use of traditional materials. The works in the showcase were created during Lindah's three month residency in a cottage in the grounds at Government House.
The Matairangi Mahi Toi artist in residence programme is operated jointly by Government House and Massey University.
On 12 October, Dame Patsy and Sir David attended a national commemoration at Pukeahu National Memorial Park to mark the centenary of the Battle of Passchendaele, where New Zealand suffered its greatest loss of life on an overseas battlefield.
Dame Patsy was delighted to host the Frances Clarke Awards at Government House for the second time since her term began. The awards, organised by the Wellington Down Syndrome Asociation, recognise and encourage achievement by people with Down Syndrome.
The three recipients Fletch Gallagher, Brendon Porthouse and Stephen Williams were delighted with their cups and certificates and Sue Elsworth was recognised for her outstanding contribution to the Wellington Down Syndrome community.
Today was a busy one for Dame Patsy and Sir David with a quick trip to Auckland to open the Halberg Disability Junior Games then back to Wellington to host an award ceremony for St John. Congratulations to the 90 cadets from all around New Zealand who received their St John Grand Prior Awards and good luck to all the Games competitors.
Dame Patsy wishes to acknowledge the passing of kaumatua Lewis Moeau, QSO who was an advisor to former Governors-General Sir Anand Satyanand and Sir Jerry Mateparae. Lewis's wise counsel and gentle manner were greatly appreciated by Sir Anand and Sir Jerry and he was highly regarded by the Government House staff he worked alongside. Dame Patsy will be sending her condolences to Lewis's family. Lewis is pictured here explaining the ceremony of welcome to the Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel at Government House in Auckland in 2014, with Sir Jerry and Lady Janine in the Blundell Room at Government House last year and greeting Prince William on his arrival at Government House at the beginnning of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's State Visit in 2014.
On Friday 29 September, Dame Patsy visited the school where she spent her secondary school years - Hamilton Girls High School. Dame Patsy addressed an assembly and also took the opportunity to answer questions about her role from staff and students.
On Thursday 28 September, Dame Patsy and Sir David attended the Kudos Awards Dinner in Hamilton. The Awards acknowledge excellence in science in the Waikato region. Dame Patsy presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to earth scientist Professor Peter Kamp, whose work has helped develop understanding of tectonic plates and earthquake risk.
On Thursday 28 September, Dame Patsy and Sir David attended the Maori Women's Welfare League Conference in New Plymouth. Dame Patsy addressed the delegates, acknowledging their leadership in their communities.
Coco was much in evidence this week at Government House, photobombing a photo of Dame Patsy meeting Warrant Officers from Tonga, Fiji, Singapore and Australia and also making an appearance during the morning tea with Government House artist in residence Lindah Lepou.
Despite being an ardent supporter of gender equity, Coco stayed upstairs during Tuesday night's White Camellia Awards honouring businesses promoting gender equity through the Women's Empowerment Principles. We're not sure what Coco would say in support of the winners. Woof, probably.
On Saturday 16 September, Dame Patsy and Sir David hosted the planting of two Pennantia baylisiana trees at Government House in Auckland. The tree planting was part of Mayor Phil Goff's Million Trees initiative which will see 1 million native trees planted across Auckland over three years. The tree planting was attended by representatives from Auckland Council and Trees That Count,one of the supporters of Million Trees. Some of the grandchildren of Sir Frank and Lady Mappin, the family that established Government House Auckland's beautiful gardens were also present.
All Blacks, Black Ferns and police were the thing today with an All Blacks skills and drills session being held at Government House and a trip to Counties Manukau to find out how police are reducing family harm and youth crime in their district.
Dame Patsy and Sir David visited three patronages today - discovering more about the world-leading research being undertaken at the University of Auckland Centre for Brain Research; being taken on a behind the scenes tour of Auckland Art Gallery and finding treasures at the New Zealand Maritime Museum
Last night Dame Patsy and Sir David addressed the meeting of delegates from 13 member ACAP nations and observors from range nations. New Zealand is considered to be the seabird capital of the world, but also has the most endangered species. ACAP seeks to promote the protection of the great sea-going albatrosses and petrels.
This morning we visited a close neighbour of Government House, St Mark's School, to help them celebrate 100 years to the day since the school opened. The school has had a close relationship with Government House over the years. We wish them all the best for the next 100 years.
Dame Patsy and Sir David hosted the Sir Paul Callaghan Eureka! Awards at Government House on Friday 8 September, 2017. Congratulations to Neakiry Kivi, winner of the Premier Award and Cassandra Spearin, George Mander and Hana Te Puni who were highly commended.
The Sir Paul Callaghan Eureka! Awards are a competition where contestants present speeches on a science, technology, engineering or mathematics idea of their choosing and detail how the idea will make New Zealand a better place. Neakiry's winning speech was “Karori Reinventing Solar: the solution is clear”.
Photo taken by James Griffin - Edgeline Photography
Yesterday Dame Patsy and Sir David were given a brief tour of the Len Lye Centre at the Govett-Brewster Gallery in New Plymouth. The extraordinary building is a fitting tribute to the remarkable innovation and creative spirit of Len Lye, and a wonderful contemplative space to celebrate his sensational kinetic sculpture. Image gallery
This afternoon Dame Patsy and Sir David visited the renowned gardens at Pukeiti to formally open the Rainforest Centre, where visitors can learn about the history of the gardens and walk along elevated walkways into the rainforest. The gardens have an extensive collection of rhododendrons.
This afternoon, Dame Patsy received the credentials of three Ambassadors: HE Mr Marc Mullie, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Belgium; Mr Mirza Hajric, Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina; and HE Mr Wahidullah Waissi, the Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.
Dame Patsy presented Hon Jim Anderton with the insignia of a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services as a Member of Parliament at a special ceremony in Christchurch yesterday. A small group of family and friends was on hand to see the presentation of the medal and listen to a few reminiscences from Christchurch mayor Lianne Dalziel and surprise guest, Helen Clark
Tonight Dame Patsy and Sir David attended the opening of The Corsini Collection: A Window on Renaissance Florence at the Auckland Art Gallery. This stunning exhibition of art from the private collection of the Corsini family features priceless artworks, by Botticelli, Tintoretto and many others, that have never been exhibited outside Italy before. There's also a portrait of the family saint that still has the bullet holes from German soldiers who raided the family villa in 1944.
The last investiture ceremony of 2017 saw 22 New Zealanders recognised for their service to their communities. Among this morning's recipients Peter Hayden, ONZM for services to film and television; Christchurch City Missioner Michael Gorman, QSO, for services to the community and Marama Mullen-Tamiti for services to people with HIV and AIDS.
Congratulations to the 18 New Zealanders who received their insignia at Government House in Wellington this afternoon. Recipients included former Auditor-General Lyn Provost; actor Rachel House and writer/photographer/environmentalist Dave Hansford