The discovery of a Maori adze beneath the demolished Lyttleton post office has provided physical evidence for an oral history dating back more than 800 years.
The woodworking tool was found by archaeologists deep beneath the concrete foundations of the 1875 building on Norwich Quay that was demolished in September.
Its discovery has prompted theories that early Maori settlers may have carved and launched waka on the site.
Te Hapu O Ngai Te Wheke representative Rewi Couch said the adze gave physical proof to centuries-old tales. But until the artefacts were carbon-dated, an exact age of the settlement would not be known. Read more.