Home' Greymouth Star : August 3rd 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Monday, August 3, 2015
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uLetters to the editor
1860 - The second Maori War begins.
1916 - Sir Roger Casement, Irish nationalist
leader, is hanged in London for treason.
1924 - Joseph Conrad, Polish-born novelist
and author of Lord Jim, dies.
1936 - Black US athlete Jesse
Owens wins the first of his four gold
medals at the Berlin Olympics.
1958 - Atomic-powered US
submarine Nautilus makes first
undersea crossing of North Pole.
1963 - After nearly 300
performances at the Cavern Club,
Liverpool, since 1961, the Beatles play there
for the last time.
1996 - UN report says Burundi’s Tutsi-led
army killed thousands of Hutu civilians in a
series of previously unreported massacres.
2007 - A 94-year-old great-great-
grandmother, Phyllis Turner, who left school
at the age of 12 becomes, the world’s oldest
recipient of a master’s degree from University
of Adelaide in Australia.
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
James Wyatt, English architect (1746-1813);
Elisha Graves Otis, US inventor (1811-1861);
Alfred Deakin, three times Prime Minister
of Australia (1856-1919); Stanley Baldwin,
British Prime Minister (1867-1947); Tony
Bennett, US singer (1926-); Terry
Wogan, Irish broadcaster (1938-);
Martin Sheen, US actor (1940-);
Martha Stewart, US lifestyle guru
(1941-); John Landis, US film
director (1950-); Jay North, US
actor (1951-); Sonny Bill Williams,
NZ rugby league footballer (1985-);
Charlotte Casiraghi, daughter of Princess
Caroline of Monaco (1986-).
“ We are healed of a suffering only by
experiencing it to the full.” — Marcel Proust,
French author (1871-1922).
“For I know the plans I have for you,”
declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and
not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a
future. ” — ( Jeremiah 29:11).
Pale, cold and
rambling days are
over, are two Cobden
15-year-olds Graham Neame and Malcolm
Williams who walked out of the bush this
morning. Last night they showed resource
and good sense by staying put on a ledge high
above the Tasman in a 5-degree frost.
Yesterday afternoon they wandered into
the bush near Point Elizabeth, north of
Greymouth, after setting out with their dog
on a Sunday bike ride. That was the last they
were seen till 8 o’c lock this morning, when they
found their own way out while searchers were
looking for them. Their parents were concerned
but not panicky as they were confident the boys
understood the dangers of moving when night
closed in after they realised they were lost.
As a bonus for a night in the bush, they
have a day off school today, but after their
unscheduled night out have lost all their love
for the bush. Both were sleeping soundly this
A 65-year-old Chinese, Mr Ng Yew (Tom)
Chuen, a well-known fruiterer in Greymouth
for many years, died in the Greymouth
Hospital on Saturday morning. He had been ill
for a long time prior to his death.
For most of his life he was engaged in the
greengrocery and fruit retailing business. He
had conducted a shop in Boundary Street for
many years. However, 14 months ago failing
health forced him to enter hospital.
A member of the Anglican community, Mr
Chuen was a keen supporter of the Nationalist
China regime of Generalissimo Chiang
Kai-shek. Burial will be in a plot in Karoro
Cemetery reser ved for Chinese.
uFood for thought
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ributes have poured in for
Cilla Black, one of Britain’s
presenters, following her
death at the age of 72.
Black’s publicist last night
confirmed her death in a brief statement,
and media reports citing local police said
she passed away at her home in Estepona
near Marbella in southern Spain.
Cilla Black was a 1960s pop star of
the Beatles era who became one of the
most highly paid and successful light
entertainment performers in the history of
Hers was a remarkable career by any
standards. Few of the pop singers of that
era lasted more than a decade in the
But Black, 72, whose rare talents were
matched by a phenomenal capacity for
hard work, remained in the public eye and
at the highest level for approaching half a
Her hugely successful tv series, notably
Blind Date and Surprise! Surprise! were
for years a staple diet for Saturday night
Black’s enduring popularity stemmed
largely from her amiable nature and her
proud Liverpudlian accent, addressing
people affectionately as “chuck” and her
breezy “lorra, lorra laughs” catch-phrases.
She was born Priscilla Maria Veronica
White on May 27, 1943 and was
encouraged to sing by her family. In the
early 1960s she got a part-time job as a
cloakroom attendant at the famous Cavern
Club in Liverpool where the Beatles
She quickly impressed the Beatles and
others with her talent, when she gave
impromptu performances at the Cavern.
At this time, she also worked as a waitress
in the Zodiac coffee lounge, where she
met her future husband and manager
Black was introduced to Brian Epstein
by John Lennon who persuaded him to
audition her. In September, 1963, Epstein
signed her up as his only female client.
Her debut single, Love of the
Loved, written for her by Lennon and
McCartney, was a relative failure. But her
second single the Burt Bacharach-Hal
David composition, Anyone Who Had
a Heart shot to No 1 and became the
biggest-selling single by a female artist in
the history of British popular music.
This launched her on an extraordinary
pop career, with 20 consecutive top 40
hits on the British single and EP charts,
including 11 British top 10 singles and
two consecutive No 1 singles in 1964.
Her hits included You’re My World,
Alfie, the theme song from the Michael
Caine film of that name, and Step Inside
Black’s pop career persisted until the
end of the 1960s, by which time she was
an internationally-acclaimed star, having
notably successfully broken into the
notoriously difficult United States market.
She branched into acting with 1964’s
Ferry Across the Mersey, which featured
Gerry and the Pacemakers, also out of
But by August 1967, only days before his
premature death, Epstein had engineered
Black’s switch to television. It was a
shrewd move and, largely through her own
sheer drive, she remained at the height of
popularity until the end of the century and
Her own variety show for the BBC
regularly commanded staggering audiences
of 22 million. So while her pop career
was declining she was developing into the
most popular figure on television.
It was this resounding tv success
which was eclipsing her musical career,
although she always said she preferred
to be remembered for her songs than for
Blind Date (1985-2003), Surprise!
Surprise! (1984-1999) and Moment
of Truth (1998-2001) never lost their
popularity during their long and successful
Black was awarded an OBE in 1997.
In 2005, her autobiography What ’s It
All About? became a best-seller. She has
been the recipient of many tv honours and
Willis, her husband and manager, to
whom she was married for over 30 years,
died in the late 1990s.
She is sur vived by three sons, one of
whom, Robert, succeeded his father as her
manager. — PA
PICTURE: Getty Images
Singer Cilla Black with her manager Brian Epstein (1934 - 1967), at a 21st birthday party for Cilla at the London Palladium in 1964.
‘Cilla’ , a pop icon
Ein Gedi (Israel)
A neglected grove of date palms, their
leaves long fallen, trunks drooping in the
searing heat at the lowest point on earth,
is the latest casualty of a dramatic rise in
sinkholes wreaking havoc along the coast
of the Dead Sea.
Workers had stopped tending the date
grove, fearing the earth might swallow
The Dead Sea is shrinking, and as its
waters vanish at a rate of more than one
metre a year, hundreds of sinkholes, some
the size of a basketball court, some two
storeys deep, are devouring land where the
shoreline once stood.
The date trees line a section of a two-
lane desert road — a main north-south
artery that cuts through Israel and the
Palestinian West Bank — that was shut
down six months ago when a gaping hole
opened up beneath the asphalt.
Once a rarity, hundreds of new sinkholes
are appearing every year, and the rate
is expected to rise. Officials have not
come up with a figure for the extent of
the damage, but power lines have been
downed and caravans and bungalows
engulfed. On at least one occasion, hikers
were injured falling into one of the pits.
“It’s not a problem we can handle alone,”
said Dov Litvinoff, mayor of the Tamar
region that covers the southern half of the
Dead Sea in Israel.
The main reason the sea is shrinking is
because its natural water sources, which
flow south through the Jordan river
valley from Syria and Lebanon, have
been diverted for farming and drinking
water along the way. Mining operations
account for the remaining 30% of the
deterioration, according to Israel’s
parliamentary research group.
Relocating infrastructure is a temporary
solution, the mayor said. The sinkholes
will only stop when the waters of the
Dead Sea are restored, and that requires
an international initiative, since it also
borders Jordan and the West Bank.
Even with everyone on board, he said,
it would take decades to reverse the
ecological damage to the ancient salt lake,
which sits more than 400m below sea
level, the lowest point on dry land, a basin
baking in the blazing heat.
The World Bank is promoting a much-
discussed project to desalinate waters
from the Red Sea to pump the brine
by-product into the Dead Sea, but it is
unc lear whether the project will take off,
and environmental groups say it would
represent a drop in a bucket.
The Dead Sea is a favourite spot for
tourists, who enjoy floating effortlessly
in its highly salted waters and treating
their skin with the mineral-rich mud that
lines its shores. But two popular beaches
have been forced to close and officials fear
tourism could start to be more seriously
It also supports a huge mining industry.
Israel Chemicals (ICL) and Jordan’s
Arab Potash Company extract minerals
like fertiliser potash and flame-retardant
bromine for export around the world.
It takes less than an hour to drive the
length of the lake, which is linked to
the Sea of Galilee in the north by the
River Jordan. Eighty years ago it would
have been a single, 70km lake. Today
the bottom third has dried up and what
is left is kept alive artificially by ICL as
But sinkholes are not appearing in
Jordan where the coast is steeper, said Guy
Dunenfeld, head engineer for the Tamar
regional council. The Israeli shore is flat,
he said, and waters recede at a much faster
pace as a result.
Deep beneath the newly exposed land is
a 30m layer of salt formed over thousands
of years. Without the Dead Sea waters
to protect it, fresh water from rain or
desert flash floods seeps underground and
dissolves the salt layer, creating a cavity
that eventually collapses, sucking in the
The Geological Sur vey of Israel has
started to monitor small contour shifts in
the ground with satellite images that could
signal forming sinkholes.
“They have on a few occasions given
us about a week’s notice, including the
sinkhole that wrecked the highway,”
Dunenfeld said. “ But there is nothing we
can do with the information other than to
send teams out, fill in each new hole with
dirt and fix the damage after it occurs.”
That is something, but not enough to
reassure the workers at the palm grove,
who remain too scared to return.
Dead Sea swallowed by sinkholes
A structure that collapsed into a sinkhole is seen at an abandoned tourist resort on the shore of the Dead Sea.
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