Hillary House is the first ever house established within Macleans College fourty-three years ago. Despite its age, the house and commons still holds a lot of history and meaning behind it; they have a five dollar note signed by Sir Edmund Hillary himself.

Opened in 1980, Hillary House has stood in the centre of the school ever since. Stunning green was casted over Hillary House, linking a close resemblance to the nature that Sir Edmund Hillary surrounded himself during his adventures around New Zealand. But really, what does green mean?

“Green is like nature. It’s around us from the trees to the grass, to the fruits. It can also mean happiness, also sometimes it means to love and family.”

-Royall, Year 9 Hillary Student

Sir Edumund Hillary was surrounded by nature for a famous portion of his life, scaling up the snowy mountains and facing mother nature’s obscure challenges. The colour green is closely associated with the theme of nature and the natural world, along with peace and positivity that comes along with it. In psychology, green usually evokes a sense of tranquillity or happiness within our brains when it comes within our line of sight. Green can be seen as a neutral colour, the balance between conflict and peace. 

The colour green to me reflects the vibrant flora and fauna here in Aotearoa – an environment I escape to when I’m not working. I think of Hillary House similarly, a place to return to throughout the schooling day that gives shade and good company.

-Mr Cardy, Hilliary English Teacher

Fun fact, when flora is burnt down, they usually grow back stronger. Hillary House commons is a great example of that ideology.

In 1991, a fierce fire took down the commons area and swept pretty much everything that was left there. It took a little over a year to be re-built, and now the commons are standing stronger than most. The story of the fire has almost been forgotten by the effects of time, though there’s a literal artefact of it in the commons.

Being the first ever house of Macleans College has its ups and downs, with your house literally being burnt on fire and also holding the entire history of Macleans on its back. Hillary House carries the legacy of Macleans College.

8th June, 2023
Emma Li

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