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WEST COAST FEATURE
Greymouth Hospital: past and present
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SATURDAY, JULY 11, 2015
Est. 1866 Phone 769 7900
Rockwork was under way along
the cycle trail near the Greymouth
aerodrome on Wednesday after
more coastal erosion. Grey District
Council assets manager Mel
Sutherland said the latest work
followed recent high tides which
had washed driftwood over the cycle
trail and aerodrome. The erosion
had started to migrate north. Mr
Sutherland said they were focusing
on the area of highest impact, which
was halfway along the aerodrome
road. The rockwork cost between
$5000 and $10,000. Mr Sutherland
said the whole foreshore was
being monitored now. Meanwhile
Rapahoe Beach Road will be closed
until further notice as a result of
continual debris on the road from
the current high tides.
Bluebird is recalling batches of
plastic-contaminated potato chip
bags — for its second time in three
months. The company is recalling
five batches of its Original Cut
potato chips after it found some of
the products may contain plastic
pieces. In the current recall, the
affected products, which all carry
best before dates in August and
July of this year, are sold in foil
packaging ranging in size from 40g
to the 324g 18 multi-pack.
A gamer drugged his girlfriend
to make her fall asleep so he could
continue playing on his Xbox
uninterrupted, a court heard. The
boyfriend put a sedative into his
partner’s tea after she returned
home from work late one evening.
She fell asleep until noon the next
day, allowing him to keep playing
on the computer with his friend.
The 23-year-old, who has not
been named, was fined £350 by a
judge after he admitted the offence
at a court in the German city of
Castrop-Rauxel. The boyfriend told
the court that he “only put four or
five drops (of the sedative)” into her
tea. But the now ex-girlfriend, said
she slept solidly until lunchtime the
following day. — Daily Mail
Fine, severe morning frosts
A six-week closure to allow
sagging beams to be replaced in
the Greymouth aquatic centre
could be as far away as summer.
Grey District Council chief
executive Paul Pretorius said their
engineer and contractor were in
discussions about the beams and
how best to address it.
In October, when the council
resolved its long-running legal
dispute over the beams, Mayor
Tony Kokshoorn said he expected
work to begin early in 2015.
However, seven months into
the year the council is no closer
to setting a start date.
Mr Kokshoorn said the council
was talking with potential
which was working on the
adjoining Westland Recreation
“I’m not saying it ’s going to be
him either (but) he is the obvious
person to go to initially,” Mr
Replacing the beams would be
planned to coincide with similar
work at the recreation centre.
“The plan was always to get into
the stadium and do the beam
work there when they do work in
the aquatic centre, to save money.”
It was now “just a matter of
working in an appropriate time”.
Mr Kokshoorn said the out-of
- court settlement package with
the council included the loss of
profit for the estimated six weeks
of the pool closure while new
beams were fitted.
But he acknowledged they
could not be sure of the exact
timeframe until a method of
replacing the beams was settled
“ We don’t know until we find
out how they are replacing the
One way was to take the sheets
of iron off the roof, but “another
school of thought ” suggested they
could replace the beams from the
inside — keeping the roof intact.
Mr Kokshoorn said the council
had no alternative while the pool
“There aren’t any contingencies.
There is only one aquatic centre so
the objective is to get work done
as soon as possible. Ideally, work
will be done through summer
when other pools are available.”
Meanwhile, a year since it
started legal proceedings, the
council is still waiting to have
its day in court over the aquatic
centre spa problems.
On May 16, 2013, the spa
pool was closed when the tiles
started to lift. It was out of
commission for 15 months while
a comprehensive re-tiling was
done, finally reopening in August
“ We have done some interim
repairs to the floor surface but
have mats out in other places,”
Mr Pretorius said.
Born for the snow
PICTURE: Laurie Sinclair
In a West Coast winter wonderland, Max, a 10-year-old samoyd belonging to the Sinclair family of Greymouth, looks right at home in the snow atop Mount
Sewell on the Paparoa Range late on Thursday afternoon. Greymouth township peeks out from the Cobden gap at the top far left.
Jail ‘only option’ for prolific offender
A Christchurch man’s
past ” of offending, together with fresh
charges of theft, intentional damage and
breaching his prison release conditions
were enough to send him back to
prison when he was sentenced in the
Greymouth District Court this week.
Brett James Dreake was charged with
stealing petrol on March 2, damaging
a mattress, sofa and a car mirror,
possession of ecstasy and cannabis
for supply on March 18 and April 28,
receiving and two charges of a breach of
special release conditions.
Lawyer Marcus Zintl earlier submitted
to Judge Tony Couch that a sentence of
home detention and community work
would be suitable.
Dreake was also motivated to attend
alcohol and drug counselling as he
accepted he had an addiction to
amphetamines and cannabis. Although
he had served a “lengthy prison
sentence” in 2013, his sentencing this
time was “a chance” for Dreake.
Mr Zintl said the breaches of parole
were minor. One had resulted after
Dreake thought that talking to a
member of probation staff at the
Christchurch Courthouse meant he did
not have to report.
The other was because he was evicted
from his address by his landlord, and
did not have time to notify a change of
address because he was being chased by
However, Judge Couch said that
receiving an $11,000 stolen car and
keeping it was “serious”.
Mr Zintl said that was why the
receiving charge would be the lead
charge, which would capture the
“totality of the offending”.
On March 2, Dreake stole $109 of
petrol after filling up and promising the
service station worker he would come
back to pay for it. On March 18, while
at a woman’s home in Greymouth, he
became abusive, burned a hole in her
sofa with a cigarette and smashed the
wing mirror on her car.
When police searched him they found
29g of cannabis and 11 ecstasy pills.
Then, on May 4, Dreake was found
driving a car in Blenheim which
had been stolen in November. The
registration plate had been changed,
and the vehicle identification numbers
When he was remanded in custody
on May 20 he ripped apart a police cell
mattress, blocked a toilet and flushed it,
flooding the cell area.
Judge Couch said all that offending
was carried out while Dreake was on
parole from prison.
In addition, Dreake had an “extensive
past of drugs, dishonesty and breach of
court orders”. He had served a prison
sentence of more than two years for two
breaches of protection orders, assault
The judge began with a starting point
of 15 months in prison on the receiving
charge. He added three months for
the three intentional damage charges,
possession of drugs and theft charges.
“The aggravating features are that
these offences were committed while
you were subject to a sentence, and
it was a serious sentence, it was a
continuation of your sentence of
imprisonment. For all those factors
I apply an uplift of four months,” the
The “serious charges” of breaching
the Parole Board’s trust by offending
after being released early from prison,
added a further three months to his
sentence, although that was reduced by
six months to 19 months for his guilty
In total, Dreake was jailed for one year
and seven months.
As the end sentence was less than two
years, the judge was able to consider
if home detention was an alternative
sentence to prison.
“I have decided it is not. All of your
offending was while on parole, and
much while in breach of parole. You
simply cannot be trusted to carry out
a sentence in the community,” Judge
Couch told Dreake.
Historic steam train being rebuilt
Visitors to Shantytown over the
next three months will have the
rare chance to see a steam train
being rebuilt from scratch.
The Kaitangata, an improved
F-class steam train dating back
to 1896, is one of two fully
restored engines operating at the
heritage park and is currently
undergoing its 10-year sur vey.
Shantytown chief executive
Andrea Forrest said the trains
must undergo a full sur vey every
decade, involving a total strip
down of all components of the
train and re-certification of the
An ultrasound of the
Kaitangata boiler, built in 1922,
earlier in the year revealed it had
internal cracks, so it was sent to
Lyttelton Engineering for three
months of remedial work.
It was returned to Shantytown
on Tuesday to be fitted on to the
chassis of the Kaitangata.
The engine was originally used
for the Kaitangata Coal and
Railway Company in Otago, and
when the mine closed in 1969 it
was donated to Shantytown and
has since carried thousands of
passengers on the Infants Creek
Restoration work will be
carried out on site at Shantytown
and involves rebuilding and
repainting the engine and
steaming up for ser vice. Once the
Kaitangata has been rebuilt, staff
will sur vey the other operating
steam train, the L508, an 1877
Shantytown steam manager Ian Tibbles super vises
the return of the boiler to the Kaitangata steam train.
Corner of Tainui
and Guinness Streets
Phone 03 768 4075
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