Forget Te Papa, and its theme park feel, forget Weta Workshop, which can come across as a souvenir shop with museum attached. The great unsung gem in the Wellington and New Zealand museum crown is the New Zealand Cricket Museum; located at the Basin Reserve.
And make the most of it while you can. It sits under the historic museum stand which has a large red sticker on it. An announcement on its future is to be made next month and with its strengthening estimated to be in the facility of $6 million, the future of the historic stand may be numbered.
For example, the greatest New Zealand cricketing photo ever? With a huge back story. Not just republished here, but restyled and revered.
But there is a lot more than that. Video footage of past games, a women’s section, antique pads, a Richard Hadlee commemorative plate, scorecards, features on the major grouonds around the country and lots more.
Needless to say there is a stack of Wisdens out the back too.
And it keeps its relevancy too. For example it now boasts a Tui orange t-shirt, as well as the full array of the beige, the mid-90s teal, the Young Guns battleship grey, the black & grey, and the black.
The players and the ex-players know what this place is about.
So if you are visiting for the test, thinking of coming to Wellington at some stage through the year, or live in the capital and haven’t quite got round to it, make sure you pay the NZ Cricket Museum a visit. You will not be disappointed.
And when you are there, make sure you make use of the book sale outside the front door.
A great array of cricket books from New Zealand and abroad. And if you love those DB Annuals this is the place to go.
And what is there not to love about this piece of memorabilia?
Poorly reproduced here, but this is well worth a study. Chris Cairns at the top; what looks like schoolboy portraits of Crowe, Smith and Vettori, this is quite something. For example, what’s with Big Ben on the right hand side?