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THURSDAY, DECEMBER 18, 2014
Est. 1866 Phone 769 7900
A cooking mishap caused a small
fire in the kitchen of a Kilgour
Road home last night. Greymouth
Volunteer Fire Brigade chief fire
officer Lee Swinburn said the
brigade responded to a call about
7pm. “ When we arrived the fire
was out, however we used the
ventilation fan to clear the smoke
out of the house for the occupants,”
Mr Swinburn said. About two hours
later the brigade was called out
again, just around the corner from
the fire station to Dixon House, but
it was a false alarm.
The Metser vice warns to expect
heavy rain this weekend. It has
forecast a front to hit late tomorrow
and persist through much of
Saturday, with 150 to 200mm
likely during in the ranges. About
200mm is possible about higher
slopes south of Franz Josef Glacier,
and 60 to 100mm nearer the coast.
The heaviest falls are expected
during Saturday, when rates about
the ranges could reach 30mm an
hour at times, especially in any
Quad bike fine
Federated Farmers health and
safety spokeswoman Katie Milne, a
dairy farmer from Rotomanu, says
she is concerned about the impact of
the $40,000 fine handed down to a
Marlborough farm couple in court
this week for not wearing helmets
on their quad bike and carrying
children as passengers. “ Work Safe
have been saying to us that they
want to avoid heavy-handed actions
and put a high value on education
and persuasion.” The case was going
“to get farmers’ backs up and make
them feel picked on”.
Showers turning to rain
Police in Spain are investigating
the death of a nativity donkey
which collapsed after being sat on
by a heavyset man. The five-month-
old donkey was being held in a pen
which was not meant to be accessed
by the public for a Christmas fair
in the town of Lucena in Cordoba.
But one visitor climbed over the
fence and sat on the fragile animal’s
back to have his picture taken, while
grinning and posing for the camera.
Two days later, residents noticed
that the donkey, named Platero,
was barely able to stand, and it was
taken to a local vet. The animal
was then urgently transferred to
a specialist clinic, but due to the
severity of its internal injuries it had
to be put down. — Daily Mail
All roads lead to Hokitika on Saturday
as the town officially celebrates its 150th
A vice-regal visit, an air and transport
display, and goldpanning are among
many activities to mark 150 years to the
day since government agent Bill Revell
alighted on the Hokitika River bank
to lay down the first two streets for the
genesis of modern day Hokitika.
Despite a gloomy weather outlook the
day promised an exciting programme,
Hokitika Goldrush 150 chairwoman
Sonja Barker said today.
“Things have been well planned and
we will just deal with the weather as it
comes along. It’s not going to dampen
the atmosphere, we’ ll just go with the
flow,” Mrs Barker said.
While the Goldrush 150 committee
was organising the formal part, she
paid tribute to the way other groups
had pitched in to ensure two days of
activities for the 150th.
Revell’s arrival in 1864 will be
re-enacted in the first formal event on
Saturday — a river crossing. At 9.30am
a bevy of rowers will bring the historic
Hokitika lifeboat Countess across to
Gibson Q uay. Rowers will include
those who rowed the boat for the same
crossing during the Hokitika centennial
The Governor-General Sir Jerry
Mateparae will greet the Countess on its
This will be followed by the unveiling
of three new interpretation panels on the
quay, with Sir Jerry and Westland Mayor
Mike Havill doing the honours.
The historic Hokitika cannon will be
fired and the best dressed period costume
and beard growing competitions will
be judged at the old Custom House.
Vintage boats will be on display on the
Goldpanning will get under way
outside the i-Site from midday, about the
same time a ticketed official reception
for the Governor-General begins at
the Hokitika Museum, after which the
official party will move to the Hokitika
Airport for his departure.
This will coincide with a book launch
and fly-in of historic aircraft to mark the
80th anniversary of the first commercial
air ser vice in New Zealand, out of
Hokitika by Air Travel NZ Ltd.
During Saturday evening a Goldrush
Masquerade Ball and community
awards presentation will be held at the
On Sunday morning things will be of a
more spiritual nature.
All denominations will come together
for a combined church ser vice at the
Regent Theatre, including the launch of
a book which reflects on the Christian
heritage of Hokitika.
Locally born and bred priest Father
Stephen Lowe, the Catholic Bishop-
elect of Hamilton, will preach at the
ser vice, which will be followed by a
community picnic in the grounds of All
Saints Church, and then games on Cass
The draft Opus plan for the
Greymouth central business district
is out for public feedback. Over the
next few weeks the Greymouth Star,
in conjunction with the Grey District
Council, will run a daily question.
Today we look at riverside heritage.
The Heritage Park might be upgraded
as it could enhance and celebrate
Greymouth’s rich maritime and port
history, which ‘bookends’ the western
end of the floodwall, council community
economic development adviser Erin
“The majority of vision test survey
respondents indicated that our heritage
is best expressed through the port. This
project might see the iconic cranes
moved to within the Heritage Park, be
refurbished and explore opportunities
to light these iconic structures.
“Even use the cranes to support
an outdoor movie screen, seasonal
decorations or other initiatives.
“P lay space could be incorporated into
the park utilising heritage elements
such as coal buckets. Perhaps upgrade
and make safe access ways to the base
of timber pier structure and provide
opportunities to engage with river
Today’s question: How could the
Heritage Park be more inviting for
you to use or visit?
You can e-mail your response to
or do the entire survey on-line at
Question of the day
PICTURE: Nicholas McBride
The school bell will ring for the last time today for teacher Bill Stanley when Cobden School finishes for the year. After nearly 50 years of teaching,
Mr Stanley — who has taught at nearly every school in the Grey district — is set for retirement. He spent 10 years at Cobden School in two stints,
and was principal at Stillwater School, where he worked for 11 years until it was closed at the end of 2004 during the Grey Valley schools
amalgamation. After all that time, he said his last days in the classroom were “just business as usual”. But it will not be ‘goodbye’ forever as Mr
Stanley will continue to do relief teaching as required: “I don’t want to give it up entirely.”
Veteran teacher retires
Courier vans on the West
Coast are stacked to the brim as
the Christmas rush peaks.
Andrew D unn, from Fastway
Couriers, said Christmas was
always a busy time for deliveries
but it was getting busier.
“All year we’ve had about
double the amount of parcels
from last year, it’s stepped up a
“At Christmas we are about
twice as busy really,” Mr Dunn
Grey Valley Couriers reported
that their seasonal deliveries
were on the increase from
previous years after a bit of a
slow start. In the past two weeks
the couriers had been “flat out ”.
New Zealand Post West Coast
manager Matt Bell said posties
had not been delivering the
same number of parcels or cards,
but the work of the couriers
delivering parcels was “pretty
hectic at the moment ”.
“There’s more parcels than we
used to deliver, and registered
post. We used to get a lot more
Christmas cards come through,
there used to be quite a big spike
at Christmas and we would be
inundated with international
NZ Couriers Greymouth
depot supervisor Shaun Egan
said their couriers had been busy,
but the deliveries had been more
spread out over the previous
months, rather than coming in
one big seasonal rush.
“ We’re not as busy as we have
been in past years, we’ve been
steady for the last four or five
months, a lot more busy than
we have been in past years from
August onwards,” Mr Egan said.
PICTURE: Ben Aulakh
Fastway Couriers delivery staff Lachlan Havill, left, and Andrew Dunn, ready
to deliver another full van-load of parcels in time for Christmas.
Couriers chocka with mail orders
Forest and Bird will be consulted
on a new policy over windthrow
trees under a deal agreed with the
Department of Conser vation.
In August, DOC publicly notified
its intention to dispose of rimu
blown over during the April cyclone
near Inchbonnie, Milltown, the
Totara-Mikonui forests, and within
the Pike River Mine site.
That related only to trees blown
down which were removed before
Parliament passed special legislation
authorising windthrow logging.
Forest and Bird objected, but an
agreement was reached, avoiding the
need for a hearing.
DOC acting director conser vation
ser vices Roy Grose, of Hokitika, said
Forest and Bird withdrew its request
to be heard, on the proviso that the
department acknowledged there
were aspects of the removal of the
trees that could be improved.
developing a standard operating
procedure to deal with the removal
of trees from conser vation land and
their subsequent disposal.
emergency and other situations and
would ensure that the removal of
trees was undertaken in accordance
with legal requirements and address
issues around public notification of
any disposal process, tracking of logs
etc,” Mr Grose said.
DOC also agreed to consult on
the contents of the new procedure
with Forest and Bird, with “DOC
committing to meet to discuss as
soon as practicable”.
Windthrow decisions to involve Forest and Bird
027 543 0947
027 499 3973
027 838 9162
027 229 2299
027 222 0089
027 222 3872
027 432 5273
027 589 3863
Conditions Apply: Offers shown apply to window prices of all Pre-Registered /Demonstrator vehicles and Used Vehicles purchased
between 10th October and 24th December 2014. Finance is based on a minimum term of 6 months to a maximum term of 48 months
beginning three months from date of purchase and is available to approved customers only. Normal lending criteria apply. Offer
be used in conjunction with any other current special offers. Christmas hamper applies to Used Vehicle offers only.
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