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Tell us a little bit about yourself
I came from England to live in New Zealand with my parents and two sisters in the 1950s. We arrived in Auckland on an Easter Sunday (no shops/movies/restaurants open in those days). We had several hours to fill in before we could move into our hotel, so the taxi driver said he would take us to the only place that was open – Auckland War Memorial Museum. We spent our first afternoon there getting to know a little of our new home and culture.
Growing up in Henderson, Auckland Museum became our "go-to" place on weekends and holidays, if we weren't at the Parnell Baths. This continued when we girls were grown and taking the next generation to the Museum.
I had a career in education and business. I first worked for a correspondence school and later, after a working holiday in the United Kingdom, I worked for the UK Probation Service. Back in Auckland, I worked for a firm of accountants, then a company that specialised in importing handmade rugs and tapestries from around the world. I stayed with that company for nearly 40 years and got to travel the world for them. When that company closed, I became Assistant General Manager for Diabetes Auckland, a charity supporting people with diabetes.
You are currently a volunteer – tell us more about your role
In the early 2000s, my mother became terminally ill with cancer. After nursing her I found myself out of touch with people. I was fortunate enough to see a notice in the paper calling for volunteers at the Museum. I was accepted to join the volunteer team at the Museum, initially on the Information Desk. After a year or so, I took the opportunity to train as a guide and have been guiding ever since (except Lockdowns)
After retiring from my paid job at Diabetes Auckland, I was able to put some of my skills to use in other roles at the Museum: Office Reception; minute taker for the Investment Committee; transcriber of recorded interviews in various departments; transcriber for Documentary Heritage and Pou Maumahara.
During recent years, I have discovered that I have a skill that computers can't do and that is reading and transcribing handwritten letters:
I am now anxiously awaiting the opportunity to do some guiding again.
Why do you love the Museum?
The Museum holds so many personal memories for me, going back to our first day here:
I am currently Vice-President of the Auckland Museum Institute and have been on that Council for 12 years now. This is one of the oldest Societies in Auckland (153 years) and it has mirrored and influenced the growth of Auckland, supported its preservation initiatives and promoted life-long learning all those years.
Why have you decided to leave a Gift in Your Will?
For me, Auckland Museum has both stayed a constant and responded to the need for change. It has become not just a heritage landmark but a part of the DNA of our city and my family. Having no children of my own and being the last to carry my family's name, I wanted to give something back to the city that has given so much to me (great life, great health, great community). I couldn't find anywhere better than the Institution that has been the background of my family and supporting this Museum to meet the needs of the next generation.
Not only have I left a gift in my will, but also I am giving gifts now so I can enjoy seeing how they are utilised. I have confidence in how the gift in my Will will be used after I am gone.
Like Marguerite, you too can make a difference by remembering Auckland Museum in your Will.
Leaving a gift in your Will is a generous way to contribute to the Museum’s future. Your legacy, large or small, will enrich the lives of future generations by ensuring that they can enjoy all that you love and value at Auckland Museum today.
Get in touch to learn more about our legacy programme, or click here for more information about leaving a gift in your Will.
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