Home' Greymouth Star : December 21st 2013 Contents Greymouth Star
West Coast feature
6 - Saturday, December 21, 2013Seems like only yesterday
Bus accident closes pass
e weekend closure of the Haast
Pass as a result of a bus accident has
caused little impact on tourist hotels
in Greymouth so far.
e Gates of Haast Bridge will be
closed for a week after a bus hit the
southern left-hand abutment, bending
a king strut 700mm.
Of the three hotels that take the bus
tours --- Ashley Motor Inn, Kings
Hotel and Revingtons Hotel --- only
Kings has a tour in doubt.
"At the moment we haven't had
any cancellations although we are
requesting con rmation on one," Lyn
Anderson, Kings manageress said.
"Ashley manager, Phillip Groom said
that he had not had any cancellations.
Passengers on the bus had a lucky
escape according to Tra c O cer,
On board were children, parents and
teachers from Riverton, Southland.
Four were taken to hospital.
" e most serious injury was a
broken leg and the rest had cuts."
Reefton concern about
Venture Paci c r m's
Reefton businessman, Mr Bevan
Whealans today described the decision
of Venture Paci c to buy an existing
sawmill at Stillwater as a "betrayal of
the regional concept of the utilisation
of North Westland beech forests".
Venture Paci c's executive, Mr Robin
Goode, announced early this month
that the company was shelving plans
for the Reefton-based processing plant
in favour of buying Odlins Stillwater
operation. He said testing of the beech
resource had shown insect damage
and other factors which would make
it di cult to achieve a high quality
"Beech Industry for Reefton --- How
often have we read those headlines,
and still we wait," Mr Whealans said.
"Venture Paci c's decision to
buy the mill at Stillwater is more
than a disappointment to Reefton's
aspirations, it is a betrayal."
Mr Whealans described the absence
of comment from the West Coast
United Council on On Venture
Paci c's decision as "deafening" and
the Regional Development Council's
40-bed rest home for
A Blenheim-based company,
Brankin Holdings Ltd has been given
the go-ahead to buy three sections at
the top of Greymouth's readneedle
Street with a view to building a 40-
bed rest home.
Company director, Mr omas
Brankin sought approval to buy the
sections at the Borough Council's nal
meeting of the year last night.
Writing to the council, Mr Brankin
said that he would be grateful for an
immediate answer to his request so he
could be in a position to table working
drawings for approval at the rst
council meeting of next year.
e company owns and operates
a 30-bed rest home, Lakewood, in
Con dent Hospital will
West Coast MP, Mr Kerry Burke,
is con dent Reefton Hospital
will remain open on the basis of
recommendations in the report of
West Coast Area Health Board
consultant, Mr Tom McGuigan.
Mr Burke recommended that the
board engage Mr McGuigan to carry
out the consultancy into services
following its unpopular decision to
close Reefton and Westland Hospitals.
He said today that he was
disappointed the board had delayed
making a decision on Reefton
Hospital but he believed it would be
unable to close the hospital when it
considered the issue in February.
"I think the board could have
decided already not to close Reefton.
e point is raised in the consultant's
report that it will not be possible to
"He outlines the reasons why
Reefton and other hospitals need to
be kept open and he concluded that
far too little study had gone into the
earlier decision to close."
Green light for new
After years of dreaming and
planning the new Hokitika River
Bridge is to become a reality with the
National Roads Board yesterday giving
its nal approval for the $7.3 million
Construction will begin in the
middle of next year and the bridge and
new State highway is expected to be
open for tra c in 1991.
Meeting in Wellington yesterday,
the board approved plans and nance
for a two-lane 410m long bridge
with a culverted causeway to connect
between the end of Fitzherbert Street
and the middle island.
Timberlands sta are
e proposed sale of forestry assets
has left Timberlands sta on the West
Coast disappointed and uncertain
about their future says district
manager, Mr David Hilliard.
"If the assets of the Crown are going
to be liquidated there is no need for
the Forestry Corporation in the long
term. We are here to sell the assets
for the Crown and in the end will be
managing ourselves out of a job."
He said sta at Timberlands on the
West Coast were very disappointed
they had not been given the
opportunities they were promised
when they took employment with the
Mr Hilliard said the viability of
forestry assets on the West Coast
looked good in the long term. " ere
is no reason why individual sawmillers
can't bid for individual pieces of land
they are interested in."
e second week of December 1988 was notable for a bus full of students crashing into the Gates of Haast Bridge, Reefton was accusing Venture
Paci c of betrayal, and a Blenheim developer was seeking approval to build the Kowhai Manor rest home. Consent had just been granted for a new
bridge across the Hokitika River, West Coast MP Kerry Burke was predicting that Reefton Hospital would remain open, and Timberlands boss Dave
Hilliard was accusing the government of selling o its assets.
Constable Keith and puppet Sni on a visit to Greymouth. In 1986, Keith de Dulin was badly hurt in a helicopter crash at Franz Josef Glacier, that killed three police o cers.
Opening the playground outside the Greymouth library, with Neil Ellery, Elsie Perrie and Leonie Stenhouse.
With their certi cates in computing, Karen Todd, back, with Vivien Eastwood. Front: James MacKenzie, Shelley
Miles and Priyani De Silva.
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