Home' Greymouth Star : June 7th 2014 Contents Greymouth Star
West Coast features
8 - Saturday, June 7, 2014
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May 29, 1989
Farmer’s deer loosed in
Greymouth police are appealing for
information on what they describe as a
malicious act involving the release of deer
belonging to an Iveagh Bay farmer last
Some time on Monday, hinds to the value
of $20,000 were driven through vandalised
fences on the property of Mr Thomas Trevor.
Offenders had cut six sections of fence at
the east end of the farm and driven the deer
from a middle paddock out of the farm and,
possibly for a further three to five kilometres
as far as Rotomanu where they were seen
the next day.
The deer were not insured and amount to
slightly over half of Mr Trevor’s herd.
“The police believe it was carried out as
some sort of vendetta. It was a deliberate
and malicious act which amounts to theft,”
senior constable Laurie Anderson of the
Greymouth Police said.
May 30, 1989
Keystores Shop set to close
Keystores in Tainui Street looks set to
close unless a buyer can be found for the
store within two months.
But the Cobden store is to be kept open by
grocery wholesaler Rattrays Ltd if a buyer
cannot be found for the business.
Rattrays, which bought out former
Keystores owners, Dingwall and Paulger,
a year ago has placed all the South Island
businesses on the market, but has yet
received no firm offers for either of the two
Buyers are also being sought for the
Hokitika and Westport stores.
Rattrays’ retail operations manager, Mr
Martin Howman said the Tainui Street store
would close if a buyer could not be found.
The store would be a profitable business for
a husband and wife team but was not big
enough for the company to retain.
It was keeping Cobden open because it
ser ved a need in that area.
“There is nothing else in Cobden and it ’s
probably more of a conscience thing than
May 31, 1989
Top honours for four
Four West Coasters are among seven
people to receive top honours from the New
Zealand Historic Places Trust in recognition
of their outstanding contribution to historic
The honours were announced this week by
the trust chairperson, Mrs Dinah Holman.
All four Coasters are long-ser ving members
of the trust ’s regional committee and have
been awarded certificates of Meritorius
They are Mr Arthur Evans (Greymouth)
and Mr John Grassman, Mr James Keenan
and Mr Ian Fraser (Hokitika).
Their voluntary work has assisted the
preser vation of many historic cottages
including Green’s Cottage at Burke’s Pass,
Red Hills at Lake Rotoiti, Molesworth,
Whitewater at Nelson and Eskhead in
June 1, 1989
Search today for missing
‘copter and Coast men
An aerial search continued this morning
for a deer recovery helicopter carrying
two West Coast men which went missing
between Greymouth and Oxford late
The missing men are the pilot, Mr David
McIlroy, 38, of Greymouth and his shooter,
Mr Bruce McDonald, 28, of Arahura.
The last positive sighting of the helicopter,
a Robinson R22 was at 1.30am when the
men stopped to refuel at Aickens.
It was believed the helicopter was then
heading towards Mt Thomas where they
were intending to shoot deer.
Police this morning were trying to confirm
sightings of the helicopter in the Mt
Thomas, Esk River area at 4pm yesterday.
An RNZAF Orion flew over the area last
night in an unsuccessful attempt to pick up
the helicopter’s emergency locator beacon.
June 2, 1989
Coast pair on ‘copter safe
after “freezing” bush trek
A Greymouth helicopter pilot and his
passenger walked out of the Cox River
Valley near Arthur’s Pass last evening after
spending a “freezing” night in the open
when their helicopter ran out of fuel.
Mr David McIlroy, 38, and his passenger
Mr Bruce McDonald, 28, were found fit
and well by search and rescue personnel
at 5.15pm on their way to the Mt White
Station after walking for 13 hours yesterday
after a sleepless night in the snow.
During their long trek through the
bush the two men were aware that several
helicopters were searching but were unable
to signal to them.
June 3, 1989
Guarded optimism about
IPL’s Gladstone mill
South Australia Timber Company
(SATCO) chairman Mr Graeme Higgins
yesterday expressed guarded optimism about
the future of the Gladstone plywood
Mr Higgins was one of five SATCO
directors who flew from Australia for a
board meeting at the International Panel
and Lumber mill.
He said the fact that SATCO brought the
whole board to the West Coast indicated
it was happy with the situation, but
warned that there were many factors which
influenced the profitability of the mill which
is now privately owned by SATCO, a South
Australian state Government enterprise.
“The whole operation is a bit of a knife-
edge situation and many things, such as
the cost and availability of logs, cost of
transport, quality of workmanship within
the mill and the fluctuations of exchange
rates between New Zealand and Australia
can effect us.”
In 1989, the Business and Professional Women’s Club donated a microwave over to Hannan Ward at Grey
Base Hopsital. Pictured are members Betty Stone, left, and Joyce Blair, nurse Helen Rzepecky, club president
Cindy Williams and principal nurse June Mann.
Deer were in the news 25 years ago after a farmer lost $20,000 worth of stock, while a search
was mounted for a helicopter which went missing on a venison recovery trip. The future of
the Gladstone plywood factory was also in doubt. Read more from the yellowing pages of the
Greymouth Evening Star of May-June 1989.
oss McLennan has lived
all his life in Ikamatua
and says the Anglican
Church was always
just part of the
“The Mirfin family
supplied all the timber to build the
church. I attended church there at a
young age, along with my brothers. As
youngsters, going to the church was our
“It was originally a Presbyterian church
and the Anglicans took it over. My wife,
Marjorie, used to teach Sunday School
at the church, so it has a lot of fond
memories for me,” Ross said.
“My daughter Carolyn was married in
the church and three of my grandchildren
were christened there — those sort of
things you always remember.
“The community basically looked after
and maintained the church.
“As I recall there was no resident vicar
there. Reverend Hodge, who lived at
Ahaura, would come up each Sunday and
take the ser vice.
“ It was a nice little church and always
well maintained, and in the later years I
used to mow the lawns and keep an eye on
Yvonne Mirfin has lived in Ikamatua
all her married life and says the little old
church has many memories for her, too.
“ In the earlier times there was a good
turnout with the local families, but over
the years numbers dropped.
“The Mirfin family supplied all the
timber to build the church and for the
pews as well.
“ Both the Presbyterians and the
Anglicans used the church originally.
“The last ser vice held at the church was
for my husband Donald ’s funeral ser vice,
which will be eight years coming up this
“Our four sons were all christened in
the church so to us it was a special little
church where we had ser vices, weddings,
funerals and christenings.”
The Ikamatua Anglican Church closed its doors
in early 2008 and is now a private residence. PAUL
McBRIDE talks to the Grey Valley families who had
a close relationship with this old relic of a bygone era.
Faith of our Fathers:
Old West Coast churches
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