Coromandel’s New Chums beach protected from developers after sale

Wainuiototo Bay is one of the last undeveloped beaches left in the eastern Coromandel.


Wainuiototo Bay is one of the last undeveloped beaches left in the eastern Coromandel.

A piece of untouched coastal land in the Coromandel is now in safe hands after a trust purchased the property.

Wainuiototo Bay, also known as New Chums Beach, near Whangapoua, was a privately-owned beach isolated from development.

For the last decade, developers have attempted to subdivide the catchment, but their every move has been strongly opposed by Coromandel locals.

The 30ha property was tendered for sale on behalf of receivers appointed by the Bank of New Zealand after Galt Nominees, owned by businessman George Kerr, defaulted on a mortgage.

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The purchase was made by the New Zealand Coastal Trust with support from mana whenua, Preserve New Chum for Everyone, the Whangapoua Beach Ratepayers Association, and the Environmental Defence Society.

Trustee Gary Taylor said it’s been a fantastic outcome for the public of Aotearoa New Zealand.

“New Chums is one of the very few undeveloped beaches left on the eastern Coromandel Peninsula, with native bush fringing the beautiful curved white-sanded beach. It is a reminder of what our coasts used to be like.”

He said the property has outstanding landscape, ecological and cultural values.

“The logistical challenges of the current bid were considerable, including raising enough funds to make an unconditional offer of $2.15m in just a few short weeks.”


Awaroa Beach was bought by New Zealanders through a crowd-funding campaign. The beach sits in the middle of the Abel Tasman National Park. (Video first published in February 2020.)

Taylor acknowledged there has been an enormous effort to prevent development of the New Chums beachfront. And he is pleased it’s now protected.

“Our intention is for the headland to be managed and protected forever in the public interest. We will be seeking a protective covenant from the Queen Elizabeth II National Trust or equivalent for the land.”

The trust will talk through options for the ultimate management of the land with local interests and mana whenua in the new year.

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