Brett Cowan led a large group around the Kaikoura Hospital site as the sun rose shortly after 7am to complete the blessing. Those who were up early listened to speakers, David Meates CEO of Canterbury DHB, Mayor Winston Gray, Kaikoura MP Colin King and Mark Hopwood CEO of Arrow International and Te Runanga o Kaikoura kaiwhakahaere Sir Mark Solomon.
The first soil was turned by kaumatua Romi Taylor, Winston Gray, David Meates and Sir Mark Solomon. A cake was cut by Dr Lloyd Johnston and Mary Gordon, wife of the late Dr Geoff Gordon.
The construction company Arrow announced that they will arrive on 3 June.