New PrimePort pilot vessel receives an ocean-inspired name

Timaru Girls' High School year 9 art students Chelsea Greenall, left, Arianna George and Sophie Gardyne, along with ...
JOHN BISSET/FAIRFAX NZ

Timaru Girls' High School year 9 art students Chelsea Greenall, left, Arianna George and Sophie Gardyne, along with their classmates, are thrilled to have been chosen to name a $2.4 million pilot vessel that is coming to Timaru.

South Canterbury students will name a new $2.4 million pilot vessel, using inspiration from the ocean.

PrimePort gave schools the opportunity to name the boat in a region-wide competition last month, with the winners announced late this week.

The Timaru Girls' High School year 9 art class chose to submit 'Kiwa' as a potential name of the vessel, which won the competition.

Student Arianna George, 13, said her group wanted a name inspired by the sea.

After researching Maori names, they came across Kiwa, which is a divine guardian of the Pacific Ocean.

"I was really excited when it was chosen," Arianna said.

The pilot vessel will travel over from Melbourne, replacing the Pilot Launch Ohau in about July.

It will be formally blessed after it docks in Timaru's port.

In their submission, students said "should the new launch be named 'Kiwa', it will serve South Canterbury to ensure the safety of arriving vessels and act as a guide to others as they return to the Pacific waters".

Student Rosie Barnes, 13, said Moana, Caroline and Maru had also been in the running for the class' submission, but Kiwa won the vote.

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The school won $1500 in electronic goods or cash, which Rosie said would probably be spent on the classroom.

Art and drama teacher Linda Trainor said the students were all new to the school so winning the competition had such a positive influence on them.

She hoped they would spend part of their winnings on something special for the art room and vertical drying racks to cater for the rising number of students studying art.

Ella Benson, 13, said everyone started researching potential names when they heard about the competition.

PrimePort chief executive Phil Melhopt said the Kiwa submission was "excellent and well thought out".

The quality of competition entrants were outstanding, Melhopt said.

Some clear competition guidelines, including a name which had a connection with the region's unique geography, culture or heritage, meant the judges did not have to shuffle through any outrageous names, he said.

 - Stuff

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