Riddiford Garden

Find out about what you can do at Riddiford Garden, where it is, and how to request a booking.

The Riddiford Garden Aviary is now closed.

Between 2014 and 2018, rejuvenation efforts at Riddiford Garden introduced fresh attractions, resulting in a decline in the popularity of the aviary. This shift in community preferences mirrors the desire to witness birds in their natural habitats rather than being confined in cages.

Over the years, the local native bird population has thrived, leading to the decision to remove the aviary in response to the changing needs and desires of the community. This decision underscores the paramount importance of the birds' welfare and their ability to thrive in more suitable environments.

Officers have been collaborating with a local bird enthusiast to find new homes for the aviary's birds, with the majority of them now successfully placed with other local bird enthusiasts. This not only ensures their continued well-being but also aligns with the broader goal of enhancing their quality of life.

With this being said, a small number of birds remain housed in an off-site aviary, awaiting rehoming. Officers are dedicated to securing proper, caring homes for these remaining birds.

The shared focus on the well-being and future happiness of these birds remains a top priority for Hutt City Council.

The Tutukiwi Orchid House and Gibbes Watson Conservatory.

The Tutukiwi Orchid House and Gibbes Watson Conservatory will be closed for mothballing until January 2024. The Rotary Club of Hutt Valley is seeking Expressions of Interest from anyone interested in preserving and operating one or both sites.

Significant work is required to keep Gibbes Watson Conservatory operational. The necessary equipment required to maintain a true conservatory environment (hot house) has not been functional for a considerable amount of time.

The displays within the Conservatory are limited, diminishing its value. The costs associated with repairing and maintaining the Conservatory exceed its usage and benefits to the community.

Tutukiwi Orchid House is in a state of disrepair and remains closed due to its poor condition. It has become a target for vandalism, which has resulted in ongoing expenses to address the damage caused. The cost of maintaining and restoring the Orchid House to a usable state outweighs its benefits.

Rotary are leading an Expression of Interest (EOI) process. They are inviting proposals from individuals or organisations with a strong interest in preserving and operating the Gibbes Watson Conservatory and Tutukiwi Orchid House in line with the Reserves Act 1977 and Horticulture Reserve Management Plan of the site. Unless a viable proposal is bought forward by Rotary, the buildings will be demolished.

If you are interested in preserving and operating one or both sites, please get in contact with Allan Scott on  027 280 4141


What is mothballing?

Mothballing is the process/procedure of taking an asset such as a building or process equipment out of commission to be used at a later date.

Riddiford Garden is spread over 3.2 hectares near the heart of the city’s CBD and is one of the oldest horticultural parks in Hutt City, dating from 1923. It's one of the most significant areas of green space in the city centre, containing a large open lawn and established trees, a children’s playground, a war monument, and a conservatory.

Riddiford Garden is right by the War Memorial Library, the Lower Hutt Events Centre, Council’s main Laings Road building and Queens Drive.

    Facilities include:

  • a cenotaph war memorial
  • fully accessible modern public toilets with a baby change facility
  • Riddiford Pavilion: a kiosk that community groups can book
  • a basketball half court and skater-friendly space
  • a permanent outdoor table tennis table
  • two free electric BBQ plates under a shade canopy
  • stream, gardens and mature trees
  • lawns and picnic spaces
  • aviary
  • playground for preschool children
  • play water feature
  • walkways
  • Gibbes Watson Conservatory at the Myrtle Street side of the garden

You can request a booking online. We'll get in touch to confirm your booking request.

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