Paul Janman

Fragments of the Great South Road

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The Great South Road has seldom been considered as more than a mere thoroughfare by most New Zealanders. Filmmaker Paul Janman ('Tongan Ark') and poet, blogger and historian Scott Hamilton ('Reading the Maps') want to change that. This Boosted campaign will enable them to process the material they gather on the road and kick off a feature documentary film.

Between 6th and 16th of December, the two artists will walk about two hundred kilometres from the edge of the King Country at the Puniu River up the Great South Road to Central Auckland. The Great South Road was built to bring a British army into the Maori Waikato Kingdom, and Scott and Paul want to confront some of the layers of myth and history that have settled on the route. They will show how the war for the Waikato still resonates in the twenty-first century, and how the Great South Road is still a route through which changes and conflicts flow.

Along the way, the walkers will be joined by locals, historians and artists who will share stories of their lives and their local landscapes. The public can track and even join the walkers via an embedded google map and regular updates on facebook and twitter. Cinematographer Ian Powell ( will record and process additional analogue footage and film editor Corbinian Beitelstein will make video updates of Scott and Paul's discoveries.

Funding for a book has already been pledged to Scott Hamilton for this project by Auckland's Mayor Len Brown. This trip will also give an opportunity to finish his research and gather still images for the book.


  • To say thank you is a form of utu and in this case, it comes from the heart.


    Well the Puniu only really became the border in 1864 if you want the tighter fact. Anyone pick up on that erro in the last update? Many think that the Puniu border is more of a Pakeha invention anyway. The reality was much more porous. There will be many more strange and wonderful facts to come we promise. We'll soon cut a short black and white Super 8 film to celebrate and offer to you, our generous donors as a gift of appreciation. Whakawhetai mo te tautoko. Thank you for your most essential support for Fragments of the Great South Road and for the cause of memory over forgetfulness.

    To say thank you is a form of utu and in this case, it comes from the heart.
  • 100%%% Let's make a film!


    The border of Tawhiao's kingdom in 1863 - the Puniu River with the beautiful maunga Kakepuku behind.

    100%%% Let's make a film!
  • We've walked 200km BUT WE'RE ONLY HALF WAY THERE WITH 64 HOURS LEFT in our campaign to fund the film.


    Our bodies are shattered from our 200km walk but our minds are reeling at the huge number of people we've met and insights we've had on the Great South Road from the King Country to the Auckland Domain. See the images below! We've also updated our video but there is still a huge amount of work to be done to produce a film and it's an expensive business! A HUGE THANK YOU TO ALL OF OUR GENEROUS DONORS SO FAR - we've come a long way but if we don't reach our target by Sunday night WE'LL GET NOTHING AT ALL! Feed us to your networks! If enough people pledge even $10 or $20, we'll make it happen and we'll never ask for Christmas presents again. Promise!

    We've walked 200km BUT WE'RE ONLY HALF WAY THERE WITH 64 HOURS LEFT in our campaign to fund the film.
  • Last leg to the Domain today and updated video!


    With the poet and classicist scholar Ted Jenner at the end of the Great South Road in Newmarket. Today we'll be doing the last bit to the the Domain and the old barracks wall at the University Library. If you can't make it today, keep an eye on TV3 news tonight.

    Last leg to the Domain today and updated video!
  • Thank you donors! See Facebook for Updates


    As we're on the road it's tough to do too much the online stuff, so until we get to Auckland, most of the update action is on our Facebook Page. A hard drive of material been shuttled to Auckland so we'll put out a video update very soon.



    Take a look at the route we are walking on Google Maps