Experience the rich history of Thames in the 2019 Heritage Festival 08 February 2019 Experience the rich history and early development of New Zealand in our district's largest town during the Thames Heritage Festival, from 11 - 17 March 2019. Get moving with this year’s theme - transportation. Experience the thrill of a steam engine, which is being fired up for this special occasion, at the Goldmine Experience, SH25 north of Thames Town.There's also a chance to walk the old Kopu Bridge, which has been closed publicly since 2012. This is happening at 5pm - 7pm, 16 March. Dress up in your finest undergarments for the Petticoats and Pantaloons Competition. Judging will take place at 11am at the Grahamstown Hall, Pollen Street, Thames, Saturday 16 March. Check out the heritage market on Pollen Street with its many stalls and stallholders alike decked out in vintage costumes and accessories. The Thames area has a rich history dating back to the first contact between pakeha and tangata whenua, continuing through the gold rush, the kauri logging boom and on into the modern era. The Thames goldfields were declared open on 1 August 1867 and in 1874 the settlements of Shortland and Grahamstown were merged to form the township of Thames. See the full list of events on the website here.