Home' Greymouth Star : March 7th 2014 Contents 3
Christian, Muslim outrage
at Noah the movie
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FRIDAY, MARCH 7, 2014
Est. 1866 Phone 769 7900
Ski eld crash
e man killed when his four-
wheel-drive plunged 30m o
the Mt Hutt Ski eld access road
on Wednesday morning, lived
in Hokitika until moving to
Ashburton seven years ago. Barry
Whitcombe, 55, was working at
Mt Hutt as a contractor and was an
experienced grader driver. He was
driving to work when the accident
happened. His funeral will be held
in Ashburton on Monday.
on Haast day walk
A helicopter was expected to y to
Brewster Hut in the Haast Pass area
today to check on a tourist who had
not returned from a walk yesterday.
A Department of Conservation
worker raised the alarm after nding
the woman's rental van at a car park
near the summit. West Coast police
search and rescue co-ordinator
constable Mike Tinnelly said they
were waiting before mounting a
full scale search. "We are waiting to
nd out whether the woman spent
the night at the Brewster Hut." e
walk to the hut was about three
hours. "If she left later yesterday, she
may have stayed the night and be
coming out today."
Morning clouds gone by midday
(Supplied by Nelson Weather Service)
A British teacher has been
awarded £230,000 in compensation
after slipping on a tomato sauce
sachet while walking down a
hallway. e settlement was paid
by Essex County Council after a
secondary school teacher slipped on
the discarded sachet in a hallway.
e male teacher had been making
his way to the sta room when he
slipped on an "unspeci ed gooey
substance", causing severe injury. It
has since emerged the substance was
tomato sauce. --- Daily Mail
Aquatic spa pool
to reopen soon
e spa pool at the Greymouth
aquatic centre should be reopened
by mid-April. Contractors are close
to re-tiling after the original tiles
started peeling o . e re-tiling
should take two to three weeks.
Meanwhile, the aquatic centre will
close from May 4 to May 19 for
annual maintenance. e new boiler
will be installed during that period.
Huhu grubs, crocodile tails and
mountain oysters are back on the
menu tomorrow as the Hokitika
Wildfoods Festival marks a quarter
of a century.
Organiser Mike Keenan was
excited about the silver anniversary
and hoped for a good day.
"We are looking forward to it, the
weather is going to be kind to us,"
Mr Keenan said.
e festival has been scaled back
to a one-day event, rather than all
"We are going back to our
grassroots, there will be no dance
on the Friday night, we are putting
all our energy into the festival day
Mr Keenan hoped for more sales
today and some walk-up sales
tomorrow to bolster the numbers
up to about 7000 or 8000.
Entering into its 25th year,
Mr Keenan has seen the festival
change, sometimes due to necessity,
while at other times due to
" e biggest change when I came
on board was MAF (Ministry of
Agriculture and Fisheries). Before
that, you could go and get mussels
o the beach. We had to change
with rules and regulations."
e festival hit its peak in 2003,
when 22,000 people invaded the
festival and soaked up 20,000
litres of beer. Since then, festival
tickets have been capped at 15,000,
although numbers had not met that
in recent years.
Mr Keenan said the Christchurch
earthquake had hurt the festival
and he expected the recent weather
and ooding over the hill would
play a role this weekend.
"Christchurch is our target
market. We are hit by these things."
Over the years the festival has
attracted praise, being rated as
the best event by the NZ Tourism
Awards in 2003 and 2005, while
a previous Berl report found the
festival was worth $6.5 million to
the West Coast economy.
"We think the festival puts
Hokitika on the map," Mr Keenan
Wildfoods was not without
controversy, though, often seen as
encouraging intoxication in patrons.
Mr Keenan said the real issue
was with people pre-loading before
even heading into the festival
"And then the festival gets
labelled with getting everyone
e festival will have 49 stalls
this year and among all the
old favourite foods will be the
outrageous, including tarantula
spiders and a pate made of calf
Meanwhile, to cope with the
in ux of people and cellphone
tra c tomorrow, Telecom has rolled
in a cell site on wheels (COW) for
the duration of the festival.
PICTURE: Nicholas McBride
Peter Ensor with some of the crocodile and kangaroo meat that will be on o er at the Fair Dinkum Aussie Tucker stall at the 25th anniversary
Hokitika Wildfoods Festival tomorrow. Mr Ensor will be joined by a crew of friends and family as they cook up 120kg of meat for festival-goers.
While Mr Ensor originates from North Canterbury, the kangaroo comes all the way from Wulkuraka, Queensland, and the crocodile from Cairns.
Try me kangaroo meat, spor t! Chinese audit
to sort NZ
Chinese regulators will shortly arrive
at Westland Milk Products, in Hokitika,
amid concerns that limitations may be
put on dairy exports to China.
China's 2008 melamine scandal, which
also left about 300,000 babies sick after
the toxic chemical was illegally added
into the country's milk supply, resulted in
surging sales of imported infant formula
as Chinese parents panicked about the
quality of domestically sourced products.
In a rush to feed that demand, more
than 100 baby milk brands --- many
with links to Chinese business people ---
were created in New Zealand.
But major changes are taking place
in China as its government pushes to
restore consumers' con dence through
regulatory changes and a massive
consolidation of the world's fastest
growing infant formula market, where
retail sales are predicted to reach
$US25 billion by 2017.
Today, four o cials from China's
Administration are expected to begin
an audit of seven local baby formula and
dairy manufacturing facilities, including
some operated by Fonterra and Westland
It is the rst time Chinese o cials
have audited New Zealand dairy
manufacturing facilities and the industry
is on edge about the possible outcome.
Rumours swirling around the market
include speculation that our biggest
trading partner may allow only 10 New
Zealand formula brands into China, or
that only brands with retail sales in this
country may become eligible for sale in
the Chinese market.
Westland Milk Products exports bulk
formula to China from its $25 million
infant nutrition plant, in Hokitika.
Westland chief executive Rod Quin
said the Chinese government had
indicated that it wanted to do business
with dairy manufacturers that controlled
the entire supply chain, from the cows
through to the consumer.
at puts companies like Westland,
Fonterra and Synlait --- which control
their own milk supply --- in a good
position to deal with the regulatory
changes, he said.
"We think that's a real opportunity
for Westland, but quite how it plays
out and the requirements is still the
area that everybody's asking about."
--- New Zealand Herald
Greymouth will return to its roots in
July with a 'goldrush' to celebrate the
town's 150th anniversary.
On July 22, 1864, pioneer storekeeper
Reuben Waite sailed across the Grey
River bar, along with a boat full of
diggers headed for the Greenstone
gold eld. Among them were the Watson
brothers, who along with two friends,
started digging on the beach at Karoro,
recovering 1800 ounces, the equivalent
of $3 million in today's money. at area
is now known as Watsons Creek.
To celebrate the 150th, the Grey
District Council has decided on a gold
hunt on the beach between Watsons
Creek and the Suburbs Rugby League
ground, further north at Karoro.
Rather than burying gold, they will
bury gold stones, entitling the nder to
cash it in for the real thing.
"A minimum of 3oz of gold in 1oz
lots will be available," Mayor Tony
Kokshoorn said today.
e council also wants businesses
to come on board, with more stones
entitling the nder to a lucky dip prize.
Everything will be buried above the high
e 150th weekend, July 26-27, will be
promoted in Canterbury and organisers
say there is the potential to make it into
a large event.
e council is also working with West
Coast Speedway, which has indicated it
may run its major reworks display for
"We will also be encouraging shop
owners to work a theme around their
shops in that week," Mr Kokshoorn said.
Reefton promised own GP
A 100-strong public meeting in
Reefton last night was told the
West Coast District Health Board
had nally managed to secure a
permanent GP for the township.
Reefton has had to rely on locums
for years, and at times nurses.
Concerns are also felt about the
future of Reefton Hospital, which
was so short-sta ed last year it
stopped accepting patients for a time.
DHB chief executive David
Meates, programme director Michael
Frampton and board member
Michelle Lomax, of Westport, were
among those who fronted the public
Buller district councillor Dave
Hawes said the main concern was
the lack of a permanent GP, and
the problems that occurred when
people trying to get diagnosed had
to consult a string of locum doctors.
Mr Hawes said the meeting was
told the board had now employed
a doctor, who would start there in
about two months.
"( ey) did indicate that their intent
is to maintain that GP coverage.
ey are also looking at employing
another GP for downtime cover,
holidays, sick days, training days."
Mr Hawes said another concern was
travel allowances for people heading
to Greymouth for appointments.
Currently, to qualify a patient
had to live 80km away, but the way
Reefton was measured --- possibly
post o ce to post o ce, rather than
hospital to hospital, and also due to
road improvements over the years
--- the journey to Greymouth was
Mr Hawes said those attending last
night left generally feeling they were
being listened to, and he was pleased
the board came and engaged.
ey were also told that Reefton
health services would probably be
reviewed mid-year, after Greymouth
e board indicated GP services
had been changed in South Westland
in an 'innovative way' and people
were happy there, he said.
A petition with over 1000
signatures calling for a permanent
GP was handed over at the meeting.
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