🎙️ Check It Out! A podcast about library stuff at Te Haeata!

🎙️ Introducing Check It Out!

Check It Out! is a new podcast/radio show hosted by Saniya & Senga from the Library in association with the fine folks at Radio Southland.

There’s loads of information about books, local history, library events, how the library can help you with your research and more! Our libraries are not just about books – there’s so much they have to offer – so tune in and find out more! 

You can catch new episodes each Monday at 12.30pm on Radio Southland 96.4FM, or listen to them after the fact on the Radio Southland website.

🆕 Latest episode

LH34 Blade of Grass

Senga talks to Wendy about artworks “Blade of Grass” (outside the Te Hīnaki – Civic Building) and the aluminium mural that symbolises urbanisation of Invercargill (inside the building, on the wall behind the help desk). These works of art were commissioned to mark the Invercargill’s centenary in 1971.

🎧 Past episodes

#40 Special Libraries

Listen to this episode to learn about special libraries. Did you know that the old Gore library building (now Eastern Southland Gallery) was built on the money of Andrew Carnegie, the same person behind sponsoring the Carnegie Hall in New York?

LH33 History of the Basilica

In this episode Wendy tells Senga about her quest to research the history of St Mary Basilica, talks about the importance of records and reflects on the change through the years.

#39 The Development of Paper

Join us on a journey through time and space as we explore the origins. Evolution and revolutionary impact of one of humanity’s most important inventions.

LH32 Women of the Catlins

Senga and Rosie talk about Oral History project that captured stories of the women of the Catlins.

#38 Famous Libraries of Europe

Saniya and Senga talk about prominent European libraries that they have visited and share curious stories about them.

LH31 War Memorials Project #3

Senga and Matthew continue their chat about Invercargill War Memorials, this time their focus is on the Cenotaph.

#37 Te Ao Māori Approach to Libraries

Saniya and Senga kōrero with Kaupapa Māori Advisor for the Leisure and Recreation team at Council Doreen Whakamoe-Pikia about her work with Te Haeata and our Māori community.

LH30 War Memorials Project #2

In this episode Senga and Matthew continue their chat about Invercargill War Memorials, this time their focus is on Troopers Memorial.

#36 Libraries of the Ancient World

In this episode, Senga and Saniya delve into the renowned libraries of the ancient world. Learn about the legendary Great Library of Alexandria and explore origins of parchment, a significant invention that contributed to preservation of ancient texts.

LH29 War Memorials Project

 Senga discusses the restoration project of seven Invercargill War Memorials with Matthew Nind, Invercargill City Council planner.

#35 NZ Music Month

Te Haeata celebrates NZ Music Month. Saniya interviews Renee McGinnis and Tracy Hutchison, talented songwriters whose lyrics draw inspiration from local history. Tracy and Renee discuss their creative process and share some of the curious stories behind their songs.

LH28 Tuatara #2

Saniya and Senga continue their chat about the Tuatara with Lindsay Hazley.

#34 Tuatara #1

This episode is the first of two where Saniya and Senga chat to Lindsay Hazley about his time working with the Tuatara at Southland Museum.

LH27 The Estuary

In another of our South Invercargill Heritage Trail series, Senga chats with Victor Manawatu from the local cultural narrative team about the Māori history of The Estuary.

#33 King Charles’ Coronation

To mark King Charles’ Coronation, Senga and Saniya talk about books written by and about the British Royal Family.

LH26 Māori history in Waihōpai

In another of our South Invercargill Heritage Trail series, Senga chats with Victor Manawatu from the local cultural narrative team about the Māori history of Waihōpai in South Invercargill. 

#32 Reading habits of...

Senga and Saniya find out about the reading habits of Radio Southland Station Manager and City Councillor Darren Ludlow.

LH25 Churches of South Invercargill

Senga chats with Wendy about the history of Knox Church in Ness Street and church history in South Invercargill.

#31 You can't judge a book by its cover...

But what about the first line? Senga and Saniya talk about their favourite first lines and why they’re important.

LH24 South School and education in South Invercargill

Senga and Wendy talk about South School and the development of education in South Invercargill.

#30 Reading habits of...

Saniya chats to a great library advocate and prolific reader Di Bonish.

LH23 Poppy Places - Scully Place

Find out about the significance of Poppy Places, why Russell Square in South City is a Poppy Place and hear about the unveiling of our latest Poppy Street, Scully Place.

#29 Movie adaptations and what it means for reading

Senga and Saniya reflect on the awards seasons and talk about book adaptations – the good, the bad and the ugly.

LH22 Heritage Month

Find out all about Senga and her guest, Southland Heritage Month coordinator Rebecca Amundsen’s picks for Heritage Month events in Invercargill and find out about what’s happening at the library.

#28 Reading habits of...

Invercargill City Council Chief Executive, Clare Hadley chats with Saniya about her reading habits, what she loves to read and makes some great recommendations.

LH21 Heritage Trail #1 – Captain Andrew Elles

Senga talks to Wendy about her involvement with the South Invercargill Heritage Trail and why it’s so important to her before talking about one of South Invercargill’s earliest residents – Captain Andrew Elles.

#27 Children’s programming for the under-fives at Te Haeata

Senga and Saniya introduce their guest Lyn, another member of the Learning Team at Te Haeata who looks after all the pre-school programming.

LH20 South Invercargill Heritage Trail Introduction

Discover all the information about the South Invercargill Heritage Trail project, what it is and how it began when Senga chats to Julz Orr, Special Projects Coordinator at South Alive.

#26 Lindsay - Schools and Term 1 activities

Saniya chats with Lindsay, the Learning Team Coordinator at Te Haeata, where they discuss all the ways the library connects with children – and they discuss his new book!

LH19 South Alive Organisation

Senga chats with Beryl Wilcox and Julz Orr from South Alive about their work in the South Invercargill community during the past 10 years.

#25 Librarian approaches to reading

Senga and Saniya talk about what they read, how they read and how they choose what they read.  They discuss the Bookerworm, Bob Hughes and how he read the Booker Prize winners and shortlisted titles – all 315 of them! (Read all about it and his recommendations here: https://bit.ly/3iuSb7E )  and we also chat with library manager Marianne Foster about her reading habits.

#24 Summer at the library and Summer Reads​

Saniya and Senga discuss what the Library has to offer over the Christmas and January holiday break.

LH17 Celebrating Christmas through the years

Saniya and Senga talk about what Christmas was like more than 100 years ago. What do you think the ‘hot pick’ books were in December 1920?

#23 Food, Books and Christmas

LH16 History of Queens Park

Senga and Wendy talk about the early days of Queens Park, the first rose garden and Coronation Avenue.

#22 Talking to library people

Saniya talks to some frequent library visitors about how they use the library.

LH15 From the Archives - Researching the Borough Album - Part 2

Senga continues her chat with Adair Polson-Genge where she describes the history behind two of the photographs in the Borough Album she’s recently researched.

The two photos are shown below. Click the thumbnails for larger images.

Borough Album #7 –  Lowther Arcade

Borough Album #86 –  Old Railway Hotel

#21 Home Services with Tessa

Saniya talks to Tessa, the coordinator of the Home Services at Te Haeata about how this service works and who is eligible. Is it something that you or your family member might be interested in? Listen to find out more.

LH14 From the Archives - Researching the Borough Album

Senga chats with Adair Polson-Genge about her work as a volunteer with the Invercargill Archives, particularly researching the Borough Album photographs, and what skills a local history researcher needs.

#20 The Spooky Episode

Senga and Saniya talk about the spooky, the supernatural and what makes for scary viewing.

LH13 Mayors of Early Invercargill

Wendy and Senga talk about some of the Mayors of early Invercargill, in particular William Wood, the first elected mayor of Invercargill.

#19 Halloween at Te Haeta

Saniya chats with children’s librarian Greer about Halloween, how the library goes for ‘spooky’ rather than scary and what’s on offer at the library for Halloween.

LH12 How Council Records Can Help with Family Research

Wendy returns to talk with Senga about the records the Council holds that may be useful when researching your family history.

#18 Library Humour

A librarian got her friend to read Jane Austen – She just needed a little Persuasion! What do librarians find funny? Join Senga and Saniya as they talk about how libraries promote humour, what librarians find funny and they share some of their favourite humorous books.

LH11 Queen Elizabeth II Commemorative Edition

#17 Banned Books

Saniya and Senga chat about the history of banned books. You might be surprised at what books have been banned in the past.

LH10 SOHP Volunteering for the Southland Oral History Project

Senga chats to oral history specialist Tessa about what she loves about oral histories, what it takes to be an oral history volunteer and how she goes about training them.

#16 A Day in the Life of a Librarian - Part 2

Senga and Saniya continue their chat about what it means to work at Te Haeata, a glimpse behind the scenes and they talk books.

LH9 150 years of Invercargill as a Municipality

2021 saw Invercargill reach this milestone and Wendy chats to Senga about what Invercargill was like 150 years ago, and how it grew and changed.

#15 A Day in the Life of a Librarian

Senga and Saniya give you a glimpse into what their typical day looks like. Hint – there is no such thing as a typical day at Te Haeata!

LH8 Treasures from the Archives - The Borough Album

Senga is joined again by community archivist Amanda to talk about another treasure from the archives – this time a photograph album containing images of Invercargill from the late 19th/early 20th century.


#14 Cataloguing at Te Haeata

Saniya talks to senior cataloguer Joanne, who also happens to be the longest serving staff at the library, about how cataloguing works and is used for searching. Listen to find out what the Icelandic system has to do with it!


#13 Picture Books aren’t just for kids

In this episode, Senga and Saniya focus on picture books, and how they can be enjoyed by anyone who picks them up. They discuss their own favourites and recommend great read-alouds.


LH7 The History of Council Bequests and Donations - Part 2

Senga continues her conversation with Wendy as she shares stories about bequests and donations received by the Council with a focus on Queens Park.


#12 What’s on the 1st Floor?

This episode is all about what you’ll find on the first floor of the library. Senga and Saniya unpack the collections and services available there.


LH6 The History of Council Bequests and Donations - Part 1

In the first of a two-part interview, Senga talks to Wendy in her role as Information Management Advisor at the Invercargill City Council about bequests and donations received by the Council in the early part of the 20th century.

#11 Books on Prescription

This episode is about Books on Prescription, an initiative driven by Well South. Saniya, Senga and Jill discuss this programme and highlight some of their favourites.

LH5 What’s in a Name - Boroughs, districts and suburbs

Senga continues her conversation with Wendy and the great local history contained in her book, What’s in a Name. This time she talks about the history of Invercargill boroughs, districts and suburbs.

#10 Non-Fiction with Jill

Saniya talks to Jill, our non-fiction collections specialist at Te Haeata about the non-fiction collection and Jill shares her top picks.

LH4 Research for What’s In a Name - How streets are named

In this history edition, Senga is joined by Wendy McArthur again, this time to discuss how she researched her book, What’s in a Name and how streets in Invercargill and Bluff were called the names they are.

#9 The Parents edition

Senga and Saniya talk about library services and collections of interest to parents, grandparents or anyone who looks after children. They also share their favourite children’s reads and why they love them.

LH3 Snippets of Oral History

In the second part of Senga’s interview with Rosie, she plays snippets of some oral histories and they chat about the context and background of each.

#8 The Southland Oral History Project

Senga chats with Rosie, the coordinator of this project about what it is, how it started and why oral histories are just so important.

LH2 What’s In a Name - Street names of Soldiers

Senga talks to Wendy McArthur local researcher and author of What’s in a Name: The origin of the street and suburb names of Invercargill, Bluff, Otatara, Makarewa, Wallacetown and Wyndham about the origin of street names in Invercargill named after people, especially soldiers.

#7 What to read when you don’t know what to read

Senga and Saniya give tips, tricks and suggestions on how to find books you’d love to read when you’re not sure what to pick up next. They also share their favourite reads.

LH1 More from the Archives - War letter stories and their soldiers

In this episode, Senga and Amanda read some of the WWI soldier letters held in our local archives and discuss the relevance and context of them.

#6 Stories from the Archives - Since Writing You Last

Senga and community archivist Amanda begin a two-part discussion about WWI letters from Southland soldiers in the Invercargill archives. These form the basis of the website Since Writing You Last commemorating WWI centenary.

#5 The Kids edition

In this episode, Senga and Saniya discuss our children’s collection.
They share how you can find just what you want in this collection as well as some of their own personal highlights about what’s great that both young and not-so-young readers will enjoy.

#4 Local Collection treasures

In this episode Saniya and Senga talk about Te Haeata’s local collection – how it works and the treasures found there. They also talk about some prominent Southlanders and their legacies.

#3 Access Radio 30th anniversary - Invercargill happenings from 1992

Happy 30th anniversary to Radio Southland! In this episode, Senga and Saniya check out what news and pop culture in Invercargill this week 30 years ago.

#2 How to use the library when you can’t visit

Did you know you don’t actually have to come to the library to use our services? This episode outlines how you can access services and resources from the comfort of your home anytime.

#1 Introduction and history of the library

What do modern libraries have in common with coffee houses of the 17th century? In this pilot episode, Senga and Saniya talk about the history of libraries in New Zealand and the public library service in Invercargill. They also share their top summer reads.