One of those who surrendered a firearm, was John Hart, who has a 20-hectare sheep and beef farm north of Masterton.

Hart, who ran as a Greens party candidate in the 2017 election, handed in his semi-automatic rifle to police on Monday in the wake of the shootings. Hart said that while the gun was useful for some tasks, it was “actually too dangerous to have around as a weapon”.

“For me, it became that trade-off: is my convenience worth the risk to other people’s lives by having these guns in the country? I pretty quickly realised there was no comparison. We’ll cope without semi-automatic weapons, we won’t cope without the people who were taken from us from these events.”