These memorial walls commemorate the New Zealand scientists Ernest Rutherford and William Hayward Pickering, who both went to school in Havelock. The walls contain information panels about the work and life of the two scientists. At the front are Lord Rutherford's crest (left) and a roundrel illustrating the work of JPL and NASA.
In the middle of the memorial is a obelisk dedicated to the memory of Captain Ned Petersen and crew of the schooner Ronga, which was lost at sea on 22 April 1906. Read a report of this incident in the Marlborough Express, 1 May 1906 (PapersPast).
William Pickering (1910-2004) directed the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) at Pasedena, California for 22 years. JPL worked on some of the first rocket-powered missiles into space. In 1958 Pickering's team was moved to NASA where they were responsible for organising a number of important unmanned space flights. Read more (Wikipedia).