30 Jun 2015

More local flavour in Cooks' celebrations

7:06 am on 30 June 2015

The upcoming independence celebrations in the Cooks Islands will have much more of a local flavour than seen 50 years ago.

Marumaru Atua departing Rarotonga

The Cook Islands independence celebrations is set to have a more local flavour this year. Photo: Cook Islands Voyaging Society

The chair of the 50th anniversary organising committee Nick Henry says, in a departure from the British style of recognising the constitution, many of the old protocols will be replaced with an island style ceremony.

"Well a lot of the protocols are going to be changed as we look forward to the next 50 years. It'll be a lot more Cook Island style, rather than British, Westminster, formal style of recognising our consititution."

Nick Henry says 600 Cook Islanders from Australia and New Zealand, and more than 1000 from the outer islands, are expected to travel to Rarotonga for the celebrations.

The two-week long celebrations kick-off on July 23 and will culminate on August 4, the date the constitution was formally recognised.

New Zealand's Prime Minister John Key will attend the Constitution Day event.