From Waitangi to Ruapekapeka. Lead-up to the Battle
The Battle of Ruapekapeka happened because the British authorities did not honour the spirit of the Treaty of Waitangi
A faction of Ngāpuhi lead by Hone Heke protested in a peaceful (though provocative) manner. The situation escalated, a town went up in flames, and the British declared war on the Māori “rebels”.
Venerable warrior chief Te Ruki Kawiti stood alongside Heke against the British Crown.
The British were surprised by the military prowess of Heke and Kawiti. The first major battle of the Northern War was a draw, the second a crushing defeat for the British. The Battle of Ruapekapeka was the final encounter.