Home' Greymouth Star : April 2nd 2015 Contents www.greystar.co.nz
Suburbs faithful flock
home for jubilee
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THURSDAY, APRIL 2, 2015
Est. 1866 Phone 769 7900
Myster y raft find
at Jackson Bay
A deflated life raft or possibly
a whitewater raft has been found
near Jackson Bay. Acting sergeant
Paul Watson, of Hokitika police,
said they were investigating the
mysterious raft, measuring 2.4m
x 3m, after it was found in the
Waiatoto River by a local jetboater
yesterday. There had been no reports
of any incident in the vicinity
recently and it was not yet known
if the raft was a lifesaving craft or
stopped in bridge
A member of the public stopped
two tourist vehicles near Franz
Josef Glacier late yesterday
afternoon after they failed to give
way on a one-way bridge. Acting
sergeant Paul Watson, of Hokitika
police, said that followed a separate
complaint from another motorist at
3pm about the same two vehicles
seen dangerously overtaking on
State highway 6, towards Franz
Josef. The rental vehicles were
being driven in tandem by a
group of visitors, apparently from
India. “ The vehicles were stopped
and the drivers spoken to. Both
failed to give way,” Mr Watson
said. Police were following up the
incident but apparently the person
who confronted the drivers had
some difficulty helping them to
comprehend their actions due to
their “broken English”. The keys
were not taken in this instance.
Britain’s most feckless father has
had 40 children by 20 different
women, boasting: “God says go
forth and multiply — I’ll never
stop”. Mike Holpin, 56, from
Monmouthshire, says he can only
remember half their names. The
recovering alcoholic claims he tries
to keep track of all his children —
aged between three and 37 — by
having their names tattooed across
his back. He admits he would not
recognise many in the street and
16 were taken into care by social
ser vices because of his ‘drinking
and womanising’. Mr Holpin
says he wants even more children
because he “can’t live without
them”. He said: “In the Bible, God
says go forth and multiply. I’m
doing what God wants. I’m only
56. I’ll never stop (having children).
Never stop. I’m as fertile as sin. I
don’t believe in contraception and I
love sex.” — Daily Mail
Cloudy periods, drizzle in south
It is rare that six generations of
women grow up and stay in the
same district, but the descendants of
Moonlight pioneer Emma Turner are
proud to have done just that.
Gail Johnston’s (nee Buchanan)
Turner settled in Moonlight and
brought up her family there in the
pioneering days. Years later, her
great-granddaughter, and great-great-
granddaughter Amy Johnston are
continuing the family tradition.
“I don’t know what it is about
Moonlight. It’s part of you,” Mrs
Johnston said. “I’ve never been
anywhere else that I want to live.”
She said it must be a bit unusual to
have the direct line of descendants, in
a small district like Moonlight, stay on
— and all of them women.
Memories of life in Moonlight
are the topic of conversation as
the district prepares for its 150th
celebration this weekend.
More than 120 people have
registered for the event so far and
in typical West Coast fashion more
are expected. Mrs Johnston, a co-
organiser of the reunion, said they
would accept late registrations.
Celebrations begin on Saturday at
the Moonlight Hall at 11.30am with
old-fashioned games including sack
races, a gumboot throw, horseshoes,
and an egg and spoon race.
Some of the men will be sporting
healthy looking bushmen’s beards and
everyone is encouraged to dress in
There will also be a visit to the
Moonlight kiwi creche and later
that night an old-time dance with a
Christchurch band and a homemade
supper after wards.
A plaque commemorating the
Moonlight district men who fought
in the two world wars will be unveiled
after lunch on Saturday.
The last fun community gathering at
Moonlight was 11 years ago when the
school closed down.
Before that, the district also
celebrated the millennium at the
current hall, and the school centennial
in the old hall in 1989.
They also try to have a barn dance at
the hall annually or biennially.
Mrs Johnston said Moonlight had
remained close-knit and interactive
over the years.
“It’s probably because all the old
families are still around here and
we are trying to carry on family
traditions. In a way, we are a unique
Mrs Johnston’s own family has a
long history in Moonlight. Emma
Turner’s daughter Eleanor (named
after grandmother Eleanor Smith,
buried in the Ahaura cemetery),
married an Aynsley, producing Mary
Buchanan (nee Aynsley),
Mrs Johnston’s mother.
A number of cousins have also
stayed in the district.
She can recall a period at Moonlight
School when only one family
attending was not related to her, and
when she first started she was the only
girl of 11 children.
The 150th celebrations will finish
on Sunday with a barbecue and picnic
Mrs Johnston jokes that in some
ways it really is a family reunion.
PICTURE: Lisa Rangi
Four generations of female descendants of original Moonlight settler
Emma Turner, clockwise from left, Jessica Beckford, her mother Amy
Johnston, her mother Gail Johnston (nee Buchanan) and her mother
Mary Buchanan (nee Aynsley), ahead of the 150th Moonlight district
celebration this weekend.
Moonlight 150th like a family reunion
Greymouth’s oldest cafe
will ser ve its last cups of tea,
milkshakes and cream cakes
next Friday, when the ABC
Quick Lunch shuts up shop
Owner Michele Wilkins,
who has run the business since
she took over from her parents
five years ago, said the decision
to close was due to issues with
the lease on the Tainui Street
building, owned by Grey
“It’s not because of the
economic downturn at all, it’s
because of the building owners.
They asked us to leave a couple
of years ago, and we have a
lease, and they won’t honour
the lease. They want us to go to
month-to-month lease and we
don’t want to. We bought the
business on the understanding
we had a long-term lease,” Mrs
She had only started telling
customers this week that the
cafe would be closing down,
and had some “very upset
Regulars would miss the fact
that the cafe interior was still
much the same as when it first
opened on January 2, 1936.
“ It ’s an original cafe because
nothing much has changed.
We have kept everything
(authentic) the old milkshakes
and the old ice-cream sundaes
everything is pretty much
how it was years ago. ”
She had looked at other
Greymouth to set up another
cafe, but without the money
tied up in the lease she could
not afford to do so.
The cafe’s final day of trading
will include a celebration in
the afternoon with family and
PICTURE: Ben Aulakh
ABC Quick Lunch owner Michele Wilkins will shut up shop for good next Friday.
The Greymouth SPCA has run out of
room for cats after an explosion in the
kitten population, forcing a temporary stop
on accepting animals.
Centre manager Melanie Rutherford
said that for now, anyone who wanted to
surrender their cats to the SPCA would
need to phone ahead.
“O ur cat areas are all full, there is basically
no room for more cats,” Mrs Rutherford
The kitten population in the Greymouth
area was “out of control”.
“Already this year we have had to put
more than 60 kittens up for adoption.
“ Just this morning we had two kittens
delivered to us that had been found dumped
on the roadside and another five had been
left outside the vets, plus an adult cat, which
had been dumped was also dropped off to
“The best plan for now for anyone who
will help out, but we just don’t have the
room at the moment to take them in.”
She stressed they would do their best to
look after sick or injured animals.
“ We have plenty of cats and kittens ready
to be re-homed and would like people to
come in and adopt them, that would be a
PICTURE: Viv Logie
Greymouth SPCA centre manager Melanie Rutherford with some of the latest arrivals.
SPCA runs out of room for cats
Rabbits and hares will be culled after
burrowing into the athletics track at Anzac
Park, in Greymouth.
The Grey District Council announced the
cull today, saying the burrowing around the
track and park could cause an injury.
The police will conduct the cull over the
next three months, in consultation with the
Department of Conser vation and West Coast
Council chief executive Paul Pretorius said
the focus would be on maintaining public
safety at all times, including protecting
domestic animals and protected wildlife.
Activities would be undertaken during
daylight hours on weekdays when the athletics
field and netball courts were not in use. All
shooting would be carried out under police
super vision. A similar cull has been planned
for the Blaketown to Karoro section of the
West Coast Wilderness Trail.
Bunny cull ordered on sports field
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