Home' Greymouth Star : January 29th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
2 - Thursday, January 29, 2015
Two Greymouth arrests
Two people were arrested in
Greymouth overnight. A 45-year-old
Greymouth man was arrested for
common assualt late last evening, and
early this morning a 32-year-old man
“causing a nuisance” by throwing road
cones across the road at the northern
end of the Cobden Bridge, was
arrested for disorderly behaviour.
Police are investigating the theft
of a 26-inch Avanti Forte women’s
mountainbike from a Tudor Street
property in Hokitika. The owner
discovered the 18-month-old bike
had gone late yesterday morning.
Anyone who has seen the distinctive
purple and white bike or has
information about its theft can
contact the Hokitika Police Station.
The West Coast District Health
Board recorded a deficit of $194,000
for December. The year to date
position is now $390,000 in deficit.
A number of physiotherapists have
been recruited by the West Coast
District Health Board. The board
said today the ser vice should be
fully staffed by the start of February,
thanks to the recent commencement
of physiotherapists in Greymouth and
Buller, and the pending arrival of two
new graduates to Grey Base Hospital.
The Greymouth Star has two
Operatunity prize packs to give away
to a couple of lucky readers. The pack
includes a double-pass to their latest
show — BigBandEra — atthe
Regent Theatre on February 4, an
Operatunity book and a CD. To get
in the draw please send entries with
your name, address and phone number
under the subject ‘Operatunity’ to
the Greymouth Star, PO Box 3,
Greymouth, or e-mail competitions@
greystar.co.nz with Operatunity in the
subject line. One entry per household.
Entries close on February 2.
Ex-Sallies officer charged
A former Rotorua Salvation Army
captain, charged with doing an
indecent act in a public place, has
made his second appearance in the
Rotorua District Court. Brian Noel
Martin, 64, appeared before a registrar
yesterday but did not enter a plea. He
will appear in court on February 11.
NZME-Rotorua Daily Post
Port of Greymouth.
Jay Elaine, Thelma C, Tigerzeye,
one Greymouth vessel. Departures:
Cook Canyon, three Greymouth
vessels. In port: Jay Elaine, Tainui,
Tawera, Achernar, Okarito, Thelma,
Tigerzeye, 16 other vessels. Expected
departures: Jay Elaine, tomorrow.
Expected arrivals: Ocean Odyssey,
tomorrow; Galatea II, Sunday.
New museum sites pose problems
As schools start to reopen after the
holidays, police have urged parents and
drivers to be extra vigilant around school
buses on rural roads.
Senior constable Fred Ackland, of
Reefton police, said that after the long
summer break the first few weeks of
school were quite pressured for families.
That in turn increased the potential for
tragedy resulting from an impulsive child
running on to the road from a school bus,
Mr Ackland said.
“It’s a period of time where families are
under a lot of pressure to get their kids to
school, and kids haven’t worked out their
The fact that children were more
impulsive and that many West Coast
children travelled on school buses on the
open road was a lethal mix, he said.
While “the potential” for tragedy was
always there the risk was particularly
heightened now as families reinforced
good habits, and drivers needed to be
“The speed in any direction passing a
school bus (that is stationary) is 20kph.”
A small child struck by a vehicle even
at that low speed was still likely to have a
Mr Ackland said parents also needed to
ensure they were on the same side of the
road as the arriving or departing school
“They should pick up and drop off their
children on the same side of the road as
the school bus, and not on the opposite
side because it encourages the child to
cross the road. ”
Rural driver behaviour around school
buses would be a particular police focus
over the next week.
“The whole of the West Coast is going
to be targeted — particularly during
this very vulnerable time of the year.”
The Friends of History House group
has weighed in on suggestions of
relocating the museum closer to the
Greymouth central business district,
saying alternative sites would create
more problems than solutions.
The group last week looked at the
positives and negatives of any potential
relocation, mentioned as possibly part
of a ‘discovery centre’ and as part of the
Upon learning of the possible
relocation they did their own research,
looking at three alternative buildings
the old courthouse, the Civic Centre
next to the council chambers, or the
The study acknowledged that staying
in the current building — originally
the Grey County Council offices —
presented problems, with earthquake
strengthening required as well as
strengthening the connections of the
upper floor to the exterior walls. Toilets
needed to be installed on the ground
The old courthouse was located
within the CBD and was a “historically
important and imposing building”.
However, it belonged to the Department
of Justice and was on Mawhera
Incorporation lease. The building would
need considerable expenditure as the
foundations were not sound, the area
was too small to hold the collection, and
it had no specified parking.
The Civic Centre had more room but
was also subject to Mawhera lease and
also needed earthquake strengthening.
It was further away from the CBD than
the present site.
The discovery centre, currently an
undefined possibility, would offer a
“common drawcard” with the museum,
as well as the benefit of being in a
The drawbacks of this were the
likelihood of a probable location being
on Mawhera lease.
Moving to the discovery centre would
probably mean less space would be
available for the collection and the
concern was raised that “History House
will lose its iconic standalone image as a
‘must do’ in Greymouth”.
It was suggested, however, that the
museum could still have a presence in
the discovery centre.
The group concluded that the current
location in Gresson Street “has been
and still is and will be eminently suitable
for History House requirements and
conducive to presentation of archival
It had dedicated parking, was an
“ iconic building” and was “ very suitable
Responding, Grey District Mayor
Tony Kokshoorn said the council
wanted to lift the number of visitors to
“The museum as it sits, is not working.
It ’s a great little museum but what we’ve
got is not attracting the numbers you
The council welcomed ideas, but he
said it would come down to “cost versus
numbers through the door”.
Thursday January 29
Urgent Cases Only
Phone 769 9300 first
Grey Medical Centre
— January 5, 1992.
COWAN, Fay Violet.
— January 29, 2011.
Thinking of you Mum
and Dad as the years
without you pass.
We miss your lovely
smiles, sense of humour
and remember how kind
and hard working you
We hope you are now at
Your loving family.
PICTURE: Nicholas McBride
Coastguard southern region manager Cheryl Moffat and chief executive Patrick Holmes took a ride out over the Grey River bar yesterday afternoon with
Greymouth Coastguard skipper and training officer Doug Griffin, middle. “ You can’t tell how an organisation is working from behind a desk in Auckland,” Mr
Holmes said. The Greymouth Coastguard is planning to replace its rescue boat the Ivan Talley, and Ms Moffat said the cost of a new one would be between $1.1
million and $1.5 million. The Ivan Talley will need to be replaced within five years. It is currently nine years old, having been bought for Greymouth when it was
already five years old. Most funds came from community, however Ms Moffat recognised that the West Coast was not able to raise funds as easily as bigger towns
and cities. Funding was made more difficult by the fact that Coastguard was a volunteer organisation, she said.
Coastguard top brass check out Coast operation
Shantytown engineer manager
Ian Tibbles checks over the boiler
that was unearthed from an old
Greymouth rubbish dump, which
is being excavated at the site for the
Westland Recreation Centre, in
Shakespeare Street. Mr Tibbles said
it was interesting the boiler had been
left in the dump rather than scrapped
as the price for scrap metal in those
days would have been high. The
small vertical boiler is about 2m tall
and 1m wide. Mr Tibbles suggested
it was probably made of iron and
would likely have been used at the
gasworks to drive a small steam
plant in the days before electricity,
when boilers were commonplace.
The boiler could find a new home at
Shantytown as a static display along
the road leading into the heritage
park. “S hantytown is excited to have
this piece of Victorian technology for
education and preservation,” he said.
Also pulled up from the excavation
site were eight solid rubber tyres
and some old bottles. Mayor Tony
Kokshoorn said, with the exception
of the boiler, it had been the same
pattern as what was found next door
when excavating the foundations for
the aquatic centre.
Boiler found at old dump site
PICTURE: Nicholas McBride
Offenders complete 18,600 hours
Helping to create an
environmental reser ve,
maintaining the Westport
cemetery and upgrading a well
known historic tourist attraction
were just some of the projects
completed by community work
offenders on the West Coast last
Community Corrections West
Coast service manager Kelly Hill
said offenders completed a total of
18,600 hours of community work
for the year.
Ms Hill said that through
their work, offenders were able
to make a real difference to the
“For many local non-profits, the
availability of volunteers and costs
of labour make it difficult to get
the wide range of labour intensive
jobs done. The local groups we
work with really appreciate the
help of the offenders, and the
offenders can see the difference
they have made for someone else.
“Many offenders tell us they
have taken their families to see
the work they have been doing.
Offenders feeling the sense of
achievement and pride that comes
from a good day’s work, working
as a team and being able to see
the difference they have made are
important parts of what we are
doing through this work,” Ms Hill
Corrections had a close
relationship with the Department
of Conser vation, helping with the
maintenance of tracks and public
areas. Others had been supporting
the Cobden Island restoration
project, replanting native flax for
Some offenders also had skills
that we are able to utilised for the
benefit of the community.
In Greymouth, a traditional
car ver on a community work
sentence spent a large part it
completing carvings for the new
marae at Arahura.
Community work crews
also worked fortnightly at the
Shantytown Heritage Park,
maintaining and upgrading
grounds and tracks.
“Shantytown is an important
part of the West Coast story and
an important employer in the
area. This regular work helps the
trust financially and to physically
keep on top of the maintenance.
One track which had been closed
was able to reopen because of the
work done by local offenders,” Ms
At Westport, community work
teams had completed all the
regular maintenance at Orowaiti
and the Lyell cemeteries, and
had provided weekly support to
the Westport Salvation Army in
providing general maintenance in
parks and community spaces.
Maintaining the the Orowaiti Cemetery, at Westport, is one of the
projects completed by community work offenders last year.
Teen back at school after cancer battle
Greymouth teen Harry Foster
returned to school yesterday after
10 months fighting cancer.
His dad Garry and mum Francie,
along with their children Jordie,
Steve and L ea and Harry himself,
took the opportunity to thank
everyone who got behind Harry
and supported him and the family.
Much of the past year was spent
in Ronald McDonald House, in
Christchurch, while Harry was
in and out of hospital receiving
“ But all has worked out well and
Harry’s tumours have gone and (he
is) now on three-monthly scans
tests etc. But we will be forever
grateful for Dr Tristan Petit and
his team at Christchurch Hospital,”
Mrs Foster said.
She also acknowledged the help of
Ronald McDonald House. Friends
of the family had cooked and
cleaned for them, and son Jordie
took over and ran their Dobson
firewood business while his dad
A former student at John Paul II
High School in Greymouth, Harry
now attends school in Australia,
where his sister lives.
After battling cancer, Greymouth teen Harry Foster returned to
school in Australia this week.
PICTURE: NZ Transport Agency
Arthur’s Pass road widening work
Diggers work on widening State highway 73 just west of Arthur’s Pass village.
New Zealand Transport Agency regional performance manager Pete Connors
said work on the reconstruction and resealing of 600m of road was progressing
well. “Earthworks required to widen the carriageway are substantially complete
and the contractor will move on to completing the drainage works over the next
couple of weeks,” Mr Connors said. Work is on schedule for completion in mid-
Batchelor heads to Blackball
A former X-Factor contestant Tom
Batchelor and his band the River
Jesters will bring their unique sound to
The band is currently on a ‘Summer of
Love’ tour and will play at the Blackball
Batchelor said the tour, which had
included performances at Franz Josef
Glacier and Fox Glacier, was going
The River Jesters music had some
elements that people may have seen
during Batchelor’s solo performances
on X-Factor, but the band’s music was
largely different, he said.
He described the band’s music as blues
rock “with a gypsy circus feel”.
The shows were a mix of original songs
and a “modern take” on music from
classic rock bands such as Led Zepplin,
Pink Floyd and Cream.
The River Jesters had performed
as a duo of Batchelor and guitarist
Michael Morris for just over a year
before Batchelor appeared on X-Factor
They later added Sam McKean on bass
and Antonio Mercuri on drums.
Greymouth-born and raised X-Factor
winner Jackie Thomas also sang at the
band’s show in Wanaka.
Westport police are investigating the
alleged assault of an older man by a
Constable Paul Sampson said police
were called to a house at 8.30pm last night
after a complaint from the property owner,
where the alleged offender also lived.
Meanwhile, police attended a domestic
incident after a complaint from nearby
residents about a verbal between an
arguing couple at a Palmerston Street,
Westport, address about midnight.
Mr Sampson said police were taking no
further action but praised the fact that
people in the neighbourhood reported
the incident when they did.
It was becoming more common for
people concerned about what they were
hearing to call the police. In part, that
reflected the “positive outcome” from the
ongoing campaign to raise awareness of
family violence, which effectively meant
police could nip potentially violent
incidents in the bud.
‘Slow progress’ at Flock Hill
Westport assault inquiry
Tinder dry conditions fuelling the
scrub fire at Flock Hill, alongside State
highway 73, which remains volatile
today although it has not spread further.
The fire has covered an area with an
8km circumference since Tuesday, and
with the rugged terrain, creating an
effective 15m buffer was difficult, the
Department of Conser vation said late
Partnership ranger Sarah Ensor said
45 firefighters remained on the ground
today, supported by two helicopters and
Fire crews made “slow progress”
yesterday to dampen down the area and
conditions remained volatile given there
still had been no rain.
Another helicopter using specialist
thermal imaging equipment was
scanning the entire fire area of about
330ha late this morning to identify
hotspots. Ms Ensor said no West Coast
firefighters were on the ground apart
from the DOC crew from Franz Josef
While summer has
certainly arrived in
reports of a 31degC day
on Tuesday were wrong.
West Weather obser ver
Mark Crompton said
the One News weather
broadcast should have
shown a maximum of
The Metser vice had the
“ I don’t know how it
got through the system
but it was a mistake,” Mr
The warmest official
temperature recorded in
Hokitika was 29.7deg on
January 2, 1989. In 1999
the mercury also climbed
towards the 30s, getting
Mr Crompton said that
while the West Coast
was experiencing a sunny
January, the warmest day
so far in Hokitika was
22.6degC, on Monday.
“ Because of the bright
sun and light winds it
has felt a lot warmer than
what the thermometers
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