13 March 2024 The Blenheim Sun

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successful event was a fundraiser for Marlborough Four Paws.
Golden Retriever cools off in the water fountains at the Stadium 2000 on Sunday afternoon.
Mixed breed Lucy has eyes on the water.
LEFT: Nala, a
Photos: Nicole Harris.


Marlborough stopbanks at ‘catastrophic’ risk of failure

Two stopbanks protecting a small Marlborough settlement are at “catastrophic” risk of failure.

Repairs and upgrades of the stopbanks - along Peninsula Rd in Spring Creek - are expected to cost $8.7 million.

The stopbanks are critical for protecting the township of about 600 people. The town is also near State Highway 1 and KiwiRail’s main north line.

One of the stopbanks started showing signs of cracking after the 2016 Kaikōura earthquake. Cracks started to appear in the lower section of the other one in the July 2021 floods.

Andy White, the rivers manager at the Marlborough District Council, said the stopbank also had “significant overtopping” in the flood - the first of back-to-back winter floods - which was the first stage of stopbank failure.

A report prepared by White for the council’s long-term plan budget meeting in February said until the work was undertaken, the stopbanks remained at an elevated risk of failing.

“At the peak of the flood, rivers engineers reported feeling a swelling movement in the bank,


suggesting an internal loss of stability,” the report said.

“Without a timely response, the situation will only worsen, both in repair/upgrade costs, and risk of catastrophic failure.”

Most of the funding would not be needed until after the next financial year, which meant the work had minimal impact on the 2024-25 draft rates rise, which was 12.65%.

The council had consulted with engineering company Beca, and Land River Sea in June last year to complete the required site investigation and survey work, ahead of concept design, White’s report said.

“Initial estimates suggest approximately 30-35,000 tonnes of rock will be required for armouring purposes alone, equating to over


half the budget requested.

“Reconstruction and upgrade of the stopbanks is expected to cost the remainder of the budget after accounting for design costs and enabling works.”

Wairau-Awatere ward councillor Gerald Hope said the money needed to be spent given the risk to human life. He reminded council of flooding in 1983, when the Wairau River, north of Spring Creek, broke its banks, and wrecked havoc in Tuamarina.

“Luckily no lives were lost but it was that close,” Hope said.

“So these things have got to be put right. The sooner the better.”

Fellow Wairau-Awatere ward councillor Scott Adams said it was an important piece of work locally, but also for transport that used

State Highway 1 and KiwiRail.

“I don't like spending money but this is a key part of council responsibility. We do have to spend some big dollars,” Adams said.

Marlborough mayor Nadine Taylor said the upgrades were needed to protect the community, which from her memory had to evacuate during the July 2021 flooding.

The stopbank repairs were mooted as part of the council’s longterm plan 2024/2034 and would go out for public consultation from April 4 to May 6.

The council had submitted to the Government’s “Before the Deluge” for co-investment, but it had been unsuccessful at two previous funding rounds. LDR is local body journalism co-funded by RNZ and NZ On Air.

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Byrne simon@blenheimsun.co.nz Sales Manager
katrina@blenheimsun.co.nz Sales Consultant Rebecca Sampson rebecca@blenheimsun.co.nz Sales Consultant Chris Valli news@blenheimsun.co.nz Journalist Want to earn money and get fit, become a Sun deliverer!
Katrina Whiteside
Spring Creek, north of Blenheim, borders the Wairau River, where two stopbanks need major repairs. The Ferry Rd bridge, Spring Creek, during flooding in July 2021.

Warning sounded over lack of EV mechanics

As the number of electric vehicles on Marlborough’s roads continues to increase, EV drivers in need of repairs might have a hard time finding a mechanic qualified to fix them.

The country now has an EV fleet of about 73,000 - an increase of 166 percent since 2021 - and the Ministry of Transport expects that number to more than double by the end of the year.

The industry is calling for electric vehicle repairs to become part of the standard mechanic training programme and fast.

One in every four new cars registered in New Zealand last year was either hybrid or fully electric, as motorists continued to turn away from gas guzzlers, and increasingly EV owners are struggling to find someone qualified to fix theirs.

Redwoodtown Service Centre mechanic Patrick Perkin says most franchises have been ‘quietly training their staff’ to meet the needs of their models.

He says a lot of mechanics and auto electricians are ‘throwing their hands up in frustration’ as to the lack of training.

“There are courses available for those who like the challenge as I have,” he says. “We have to adapt and stop being senseless, push our brains and embrace the technology – just wait til hydrogen

Martin Grzelka, an electric vehicle training consultant, says without proper training, customers could end up with costly repair bills. Redwoodtown Service Centre mechanic Patrick Perkin agrees and says a lot of mechanics and auto electricians are ‘throwing their hands up in frustration’ as to the lack of training.

arrives, it will be a total game changer again.”

Motor Trade Association Chief Executive Lee Marshall says most of the fleet is relatively new and the issue would only get worse as it aged.

“We’ll see more once those vehicles become second and third hand vehicles.”

Marshall said they sounded the alarm about a shortage of EV mechanics years ago.

“We identified the need three years ago for something standalone required for electric vehicles, fast forward to today we’re still some time away from that which has been incredibly frustrating.”

If the industry was to keep up with changing technology, EV training needed to become part of a basic automotive apprenticeship, Marshall says.

“If you average out all of the global projections on where we’re going with EVs, which you know changed through time, we’re probably headed toward one in three newly registered vehicles will be electric by 2030.

“The need to know about this is not going to go away, it’s only going to grow and it’s going to grow very quickly.”

Martin Grzelka is an electric vehicle training consultant who has been working with car dealerships around the country, teaching staff how to manage high voltage technology service and repair EVs.

Grzelka says it took around six months to teach a mechanic how to do this, depending on their existing skill set.

But he said there was a lack of information about who could work on an EV in New Zealand and the industry urgently needed

to roll out a training programme with a focus on health and safety.

“So that every person in the workplace, whether you are trained on a high voltage vehicle or not, but you have an understanding of what it is and how to safely handle it, especially when it comes down to when electrocution happens, for example, or when there has been a fire.

“There are several safeguards in the vehicle that actually can prevent that from happening, however accidents happen.”

Without proper training, customers could end up with costly repair bills.

“If someone is not well trained on the technology the technician doesn’t really know what to look for and how to diagnose certain things as technology has changed, the misdiagnosis can be a costly thing.”

Sun The

Alleged workplace incident

A rescue helicopter landed in the middle of a Blenheim road Wednesday evening after an alleged workplace accident that left a person with critical injuries.

It is understood the person was injured in an accident involving Marlborough Lines on Alfred Street. A Hato Hone St John spokesperson said they sent one ambulance and a helicopter to the incident.

A spokesperson for Marlborough Lines said the individual injured was not one of its employees.

Charity Quiz night

The Woodbourne Tavern in Renwick is hosting a charity quiz night for Cure Kids on Friday 22 March from 7pm.

Cure Kids is the largest funder of child health research in New Zealand, with their goal of helping to save, extend and improve the lives of children with serious life-impacting and life-limiting health conditions.

Tables are $160 per team of 8. Under 18s to be accompanied by a legal guardian.  All money goes directly to Cure Kids.

To register a team, or donate a prize, please contact kayceemariepolkinghorne@gmail.com

Backyard cricket champs

The Great Marlborough Backyard Cricket Champs is on 10am - 4pm Saturday, March 23. The Queen Charlotte Tavern is aiming to provide Marlborough’s good, great and mediocre backyard cricket enthusiasts with a chance to show off their repertoire of skills.

If you would like to register a team: 027 263 7940 or andy.theqc@gmail.com

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‘A lively mural for children to learn from’

A project two years in the making has come to a colourful, engaging fruition with the children/tamarki of St Mary’s School completing a mural on an old container.

Artist Mieke Davies says she is pleased with the result in what is ‘a beautiful, bright, lively mural full of native NZ flora and fauna for the children to enjoy and learn from’, she says.

The second half of the project started earlier than the first year says Mieke with Term 2 consisting of the planning and in Term 3, the painting process.

“But even with extra time for the project - weather, sickness and a smaller group of Year 8s to work with in 2023 meant the project still wasn’t quite finished by the end of the school year. A smaller group meant that in the Christmas holidays, very few were available to help finish it with me, and the final stage took much longer because of this. While this mural was tough, it was well worth the effort and perseverance for the outcome achieved.”

Mieke says the group involved focused on continuing the theme from the previous side of the container but included animals and plants that had not yet been featured.

“A few capable artists were able to sketch out on paper the layout to copy from. So the mural began with seal pups under a waterfall on the south end, then around the corner on the long east side there are blue penguins, gecko, katapo spider and blue mushrooms

on the rocks with five fingers bush, glow worms, ruru and falcon in the beech forest, kereru in a massive pohutakawa tree, with weka, pukeko and takahe in the grasses.”

Mieke says a kea flies above harakeke, cabbage tree and toetoe bushes.

“We would have added in extra insects like cicadas, but we ran out of time,” she says.

“On the long side, we only had a gap of about 80cm between the container and the school fence to squeeze into, which made the project physically difficult, but the young people didn’t complain, and were very enthusiastic about the project the entire time. Teachers from the school brought their classes over while we were working, to ask

questions and learn about the process.”

Former student Oscar Brew says being involved with the planning and painting was a reason he got involved in the project and the inclusion of the kereru in the tree on the mural. “We brainstormed and had to cull quite a few ideas. I quite like the cave painting,” he says.

Meanwhile, Dakota Webb says the sketching of ideas was the fun part. She says she hadn’t been back at the Stephenson Street kura until today (last Wednesday).

“It looks better than I expected,” she says. “It has a lot more detail than what I thought.”

Meike says on reflection, it has been the most rewarding mural project she has

worked on adding the St Mary’s community now have a beautiful and interesting mural that brightens up a previously bland area. What was a boring large white container in a crucial part of the school, facing the carpark, is now a focal point of interest and brings joy to the children, and families. The youth involved in painting it gained experience in brainstorming, planning and executing a professional mural, learning how colours work together and practical application like how to use a specific brush in a certain area to achieve the desired effect.” Funding for the project came from Creative NZ, the Creative Communities Scheme, through the Marlborough District Council.

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Class of 2023 and former St Mary’s students admire their collective work on the school’s mural which has been completed. From left: Sofia Cooke, Casey Twidle, Oscar Brew, Lilly Black, Freda Duan and Dakota Webb.

Dinner and Dance for Tyler

A fundraising dinner and dance for Blenheim’s Tyler Barnett is another opportunity for the Blenheim community to show their support.

Tyler and Mum Lorissa, left for Germany last week, for what is potentially lifesaving treatment for Tyler. The 16-year-old has Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, hypermobility type. EDS is a group of inherited disorders that mostly affect the skin, joints and blood vessels.

Tyler has also developed gastroparesis and abdominal vascular compression syndrome, meaning Tyler lives daily in agonising pain, mostly bed bound and dependent on a feeding tube. A ‘Turn Up for Tyler’ fundraiser was held at Marlborough Girls’ College recently with various Nelson & Marlborough groups showcasing and offering their support for Tyler, who is a dancer.

Spokesperson for the up-and-coming fundraising event Bryan Patchett says along with his wife Jo, they have a long history with Tyler’s family through the Renwick Fire Brigade, engineering trade and music, so they wondered ‘what could they do’ to help raise the huge amount of money needed to pay for her surgery and associated costs.

Wheelie bin rollout starts

“With our music connections I approached local bands to see if they were available and would donate their time and met with Stacey and Rowan at the Woodbourne tavern to discuss options. Ideas flowed and it has all grown from there,” says Bryan.

‘Acoustic Boomtown’ (Phil Johnston and Brad Pope) will be playing easy listening music throughout the auction proceedings and ‘Bitter End’ (Bryan Patchett, Vincent Van Kuyk, Steve Kennett and Darryl Kennett) will top off the night with Rock Classics. The option of corporate tables is available which will include meals and refreshments for groups (or individuals to join a table), an option, Bryan says is proving to be a popular choice.

“We’ve had an amazing response to date from local businesses, particularly from our trade and outdoor experience communities. We have contractors donating their time and equipment, including helicopter pilots, digger operators, and builders, motorbike apparel, workshop and home handyman products plus pamper options all going to the highest bidder. There will be something for everyone to have the opportunity to make some form of contribution from major, blind, and silent auctions to a variety of product and meat raffles,” says Bryan.

Wheelie bins are now being delivered, area by area, to Marlborough households. Delivery will continue until all areas have been covered, in time for the 1 July launch of the new and expanded kerbside collection service.

Please keep using your rubbish bags until the end of June - the wheelie

Locals looking after locals

Blackmore Audiology, Marlborough's only locally owned and operated independent audiology provider has been supporting the Marlborough community with hearing and ear health for almost 2 years.

The friendly and caring professionals at Blackmore Audiology understand the Marlborough lifestyle and have a range of options and the expertise to help you find the best solution for you.


World Hearing Day was held on 3 March to raise awareness on how to prevent deafness and hearing loss, and promote ear and hearing care across the world.

5pm, the auction starts at 5.15pm and 6pm for the buffet dinner. Corporate table tickets are $100 per person (minimum two tickets or maximum of 10 for a table which includes a 3-course meal and wine for the table).

The fundraiser is on Saturday, March 23 at the Woodbourne Tavern. Doors open from

bins will not be emptied until the new service launches on 1 July.

The first area to have bins delivered is Dry Hills and the area between Alabama Road and Wither Road, and west to Howick Road. Wheelie bins will be delivered to the kerbside where residents should place them for collec-

• Changing mindsets related to ear and hearing care is crucial to improving access and mitigating the cost of unaddressed hearing loss.


This year’s World Hearing Day was focused on changing mindsets and making ear and hearing health care a reality for all. There are some key messages for the public and health care providers:

• Globally, over 80% of ear and hearing care needs remain unmet.

• Unaddressed hearing loss poses an annual cost of nearly NZ$1.64 trillion globally.

• Deeply ingrained societal misperceptions and stigmatising mindsets are key factors that limit efforts for preventing and addressing hearing loss.

To assist with this Blackmore Audiology is having and Open Day on March 21 where people can drop in and meet the team. You'll be able to find out about their range of hearing aid options, and have a listen to some hearing aids through a hearing loss and hearing aid simulator.

You can even have a free hearing and/or wax check if you want to, and there will be nibbles and refreshments throughout the day.

There's no need to book a time, just pop in.

Music from ‘Acoustic Boomtown’ followed by ‘Bitter End’ from 8:30pm.

tion when the new service rolls out.

Solid Waste Manager Mark Lucas said there are about 36,000 bins being delivered and people should not worry if they think they’ve been missed.

If you have not received your bin by the beginning of June please contact Council.


9.30am - 4.30pm

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 5
hilip Taylor for Power Trust
Bryan believes a good outcome would be people coming together, enjoying a great community event and in the process raising a large chunk of the $180,000 needed to assist Tyler in getting the medical help she needs. The band ‘Bitter End’ will be playing at the fundraiser. Left to right: Bryan Patchett, Steve Kennett, Vincent van Kuyk (absent Darryl Kennett).

Big day out for Flower Ladies

Raelene Rainbird is one of the three convenors of the Picton Flower Ladies.

She, and the other two convenors Yvonne Rigby and Margaret Frisken are making a request.

“To thank us for what we do for Picton, Cougar Line is taking us on a free day out to Furneaux Lodge on April 4.”

The convenors are hoping that enough businesses will be grateful for the many hours of voluntary work and make a small contribution to the costs of their lunch.

The Flower Ladies are actually famous world-wide.

They put Picton up at the top of the friendliness ratings of New Zealand destinations made by the thousands of well-travelled international cruise ship tourists who visit.

As they step off their ship they are greeted by smiling women who hand them a buttonhole.

That isn’t just a welcoming gesture, it enables locals to identify and welcome the visitors as they move around the town.

It all started in 2003 when Margaret and Yvonne Rigby developed the group out of an initiative within Picton Lionesses. They had supported

Interislander’s promotion of domestic travellers’ cruises in the Sounds.

The obvious next step was welcoming the growing number of international travellers on cruise ships coming in.

A huge amount of planning is involved in what has become a demanding logistical exercise.

Raelene joined Margaret and Yvonne to co-ordinate a second group, with the work being done in her home as well as Margaret’s. Hundreds of women have taken part over the years. In any one year, over thirty locals gather two or three times a week for several hours each time.

The late Pam Linten originally showed how to make professional corsages and other experts have also helped the teams who create several hundred to a thousand buttonholes a week.

They provide flowers and foliage from their own garden and there’s some foraging from secret sites. “The police must see me on the CCTV, but by now they know what I’m up to,” says Raelene.

Costs of tape and pearl-headed pins average about $4000 a year.

“Fortunately, the Port Authority gives us a donation of several thousand each year to cover costs, and to thank us for what we do,” says


What’s left over after the pins and tape are paid for – and there’s no luxuries like coffee or tea which convenors can supply themselves - is distributed to good causes within the community.

“That has included Picton Kindy, Kiwi Ranch, Cactus, the Papatuanuku Independency Trust and the Medical Centre Pharmacy, who use the money to cover costs of simple remedies for such complaints as scabies or lice where parents struggle to provide them.”

Two supportive businesses include the Shell service station which provides chiller space for the buttonholes and the Cougar line, which also understands how they raise the profile of the community.

On April 4, they are therefore taking fifty of them on a day cruise to Furneaux Lodge, with the volunteers expecting to pay for the lunch themselves.

But the convenors are hoping that local businesses that understand what they do for Picton and the wider Marlborough community, provide small donations to help them.

You can deposit your gift in the bank account 02-0740-0096650-00. If you want a receipt please contact Raelene at raelenerainbird@xtra.co.nz

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Picton Flower Ladies convenors Yvonne Rigby, Margaret Weston and Raelene Rainbird, ready to move out to greet yet another group of international cruise ship tourists to Picton.
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Inner Critic to Inner Coach

It’s estimated 70% of people will experience imposter syndrome at some point in their lives. Blenheim’s Dr Bex Hill releases her new book Inner Critic to Inner Coach on Thursday, March 14 and talks to Chris Valli about ‘changing assumptions.’

Rebecca (Bex) Hill has always been drawn to the helping professions. Growing up, she wanted to do medicine and be a surgeon.

“There’s just something about helping people at their most vulnerable that I’ve always been drawn to. When I was 16, I attended a careers seminar and heard a psychologist speak. It was then that I realised how fascinated I was by the human experience and needed to study psychology,” she says.

“Forensic psychology was just something I was inherently drawn to - I’ve always wanted to understand all aspects of what makes people do the things they do - including the darker side of the human experience - and I wanted to understand how to apply the science of psychology to help people turn their lives around for the better.”

Born in Wellington, Bex attended boarding school at Nelson College for Girls before embarking on a PHD in Forensic Psychology from Victoria University. She has family in Blenheim and moved home about five years ago from Wellington to have her son, Hunter.

Writing a book has always been a bucket list of hers.

The topic of Impostor Syndrome is something she is passionate about because of years of her own lived experience.

“I’ve seen the havoc it can wreak in my own life and the lives of coaching clients I’ve worked with so I feel compelled to share everything I’ve learned over the years about what we can do to help ourselves out in those moments when we don’t feel good enough,

and like we’re fluking our way to success.”

“The book writing opportunity came about in such an unexpected way though,” she admits. “I thought it’d be like the movies where you write a proposal and pitch it to publishers. But it was the other way around, publishers asked me to write it.”

Bex says she received an email one day from ‘my amazing commissioning editor’ at Upstart Press, Alison, who said she’d love to chat with her further about the prospect of writing a book. The first thing she did was google the publisher because she thought she’d been punked and someone was playing a prank on her.

“Ali saw some of my Impostor Syndrome-related posts on LinkedIn that a friend of hers had shared. She liked the sound of them, so followed my social media trail, found out a little more about me and basically said “how about it, Bex?” Upstart Press have been an absolute dream to work with. So flexible, supportive and have made the whole process enjoyable and straight forward.”

So what made her think she is an imposter?

“Valerie Young’s research shows that what sits at the heart of this experience are five core beliefs about competence that we learn and absorb from the world around us as we’re growing up,” she says. “These beliefs set us up with unrealistically high performance standards for ourselves such that, even if there’s a successful outcome, we never feel like we’ve done a good enough job.”

“It’s OK that there’s a part of you that doesn’t feel good enough sometimes,” she says. “There’s nothing wrong with you for feeling like an impostor fluking your success sometimes too. It’s just a normal part of the human experience that so many of us share.”

“You don’t need to prove or achieve your

way to worth, or value. You are worthy simply because you exist. Your ‘you-ness’ is your greatest asset and most unique selling point. Get to know yourself. Celebrate who you are and own the greatness that’s been there all along.”

If Sun readers would like a copy of Dr Bex’s book, answer the following question, ‘what did Bex study at Victoria University?’ and email to news@blenheimsun.co.nz by Friday, March 15.

Prostate Cancer info evening

If you would like to know more about prostate cancer or prostate health in general, you are invited to attend the Prostate Cancer Public Information Evening, featuring expert speakers from various organisations within the Marlborough Nelson medical fraternity. Hosted by Grey Power Marlborough, this event is being held at the Nativity Church Main Hall, Alfred Street, Blenheim at 7.15pm on Tuesday 19th March.

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Dr Bex Hill with her new book Inner Critic to Inner Coach.

Diversity of culture was showcased at the Marlborough Multicultural Festival held at Pollard Park on Saturday.

We asked, ‘What does belonging mean to you?’

My heart and my soul feel happy and at peace and I feel like I can contribute and thrive.

Belonging is feeling comfortable and fitting in – it completes you as you be-

come part of a community.

Belonging is blending in with surroundings. I like the people, things and culture around me. I love Blenheim.

Belonging to me means being accepted, staying true to yourself and feeling connected to the people and place where you live.

Proposed 12.6 % rate increase

Dear Editor, Well the MDC has certainly out done itself this year with another record breaking double digit proposed rate increase. But don’t say I didn’t warn you.

This has been the costliest CEO and Mayor we have ever seen. Constantly building with no thought to on going running costs and maintenance, plus additional staff. Yet it can’t even afford some new rubbish bins or a second rubbish pick-up in Picton. But it can afford on-going architect and consultant fees galore for the same old London Quay redevelopment, where the artist’s impression always looks better than the realty.

No longer is MDC a tight ship, more like a ship without a rudder. But wait, mention is made of a 5.11% covid rate relief subsidy, which now needs to be repaid. First anyone has ever heard of it, certainly would have been useful, last year, when our rates went up 7.8%. Where did it come from? Certainly not borrowed as it said it’s from reserves. What reserves? Why does it need to be paid back, if all they’ve done is drawn some funds out of the rainy day account.

Some really good answers would really be appreciated, as in case the council hadn’t noticed, a good percentage of ratepayers are fully retired and our pension only goes so far.

Response: I acknowledge Mr Davies’ concern about a relatively high rates increase this year. However, our proposal is below the national council average and reflects common challenges: high levels of inflation and high interest rates. Council is also maintaining record levels of infrastructure investment and unwinding its Covid rates relief fund, which kept rates increases down over the last three years. Inflation contributed to the Government’s cancellation of the combined colleges and new ferries projects. However Council does not support a reduction in our capital expenditure investment in core infrastructure - roading, drinking water treatment, flood protection, sewage reticulation - which are vital services. We’ve seen the consequences of underinvesting in core infrastructure elsewhere in New Zealand, such as burst pipes, health and environmental issues and an inability to provide for new residential growth.

A larger rates increase for 2024/25 was foreseen in our Long Term Plan 2021-2031. However, since then inflation has increased well above the forecasts of that time. In 2021 Council consulted on its Covid rates relief measures, which helped our community get through the economic impacts of Covid. It provided rates reductions for three years but now

Belonging is having my family here – my husband, his family and our children. I belong because they are here with me, I feel welcomed by the community.

the Editor Letters

we’re proposing to repay the deficit, which makes up 2.9% of the proposed increase for 2024-25.

Future staff numbers and level of service increases have been minimised. The new wheelie bin collection starting 1 July will however provide a much higher level of service for Marlborough residents.

Everyone has the opportunity to make a submission on the Long Term Plan. A Consultation Document will be available from 4 April and hearings will be held in June. Final decisions will be made by the full Council in late June.

Yours sincerely.

GREAT HAIR DOESN’T HAPPEN BY CHANCE, IT HAPPENS BY APPOINTMENT. BOOK NOW: Txt - 027 437 0671 CALL - 03 5795470 Jo Lorraine Debby Arthur
the Marlborough Electric Power Trust. POWER TO THE COMMUNITY
bEll Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 8
Sun readers have their say... with the WORD on the Street.
Cathie Bell for
Tettra McDonald Blenheim Chuncheng Li Blenheim Mandy Li Blenheim Xuemei Zhang Blenheim Enny Leong Blenheim Belonging is where you feel at home. Anastasia Shumqo Blenheim
Letters on issues of community interest are welcomed. A maximum of 150 words please. They must be signed and a street address provided to show good faith, even when a nom de plume is provided for publication. The editor reserves the right to abridge letters or withhold letters from publication. Email them to news@blenheimsun. co.nz or drop in to our office at 72 High St. Please note that your name and street address MUST be provided with emails. Letters/Opinions not necessarily those of the Sun management.

Sun The

I read with interest - and dismay – Chris Valli’s story on the closure of the NZ Post outlet in Springlands. Another postal outlet gone.

I had previously written to NZ Post on the closures in Redwood Village (first the Post Office and then the outlet at Countdown) and, apart from the condescending, inaccurate and erroneous comments in the response from NZ Post’s Complaints Communication Officer, there was an assurance that the citizens were

not being let down. Yeah, right.

With the intensive growth in the Marlborough region, and NZ Post’s apparent policy commitment to the public (that’s questionable), being left with one very small postal hub, in the very centre of the CBD, with little close car parking available, is an abandonment of an essential service and the community.

Kind regards

One Forty One spin doctoring

I have noted forestry giant One Forty Ones pathetic attempts to gloss over the almost total closure of access during the last eighteen months to the Richmond Forest Park with a couple of articles in the Marlborough Express over the last fortnight which amounted to little more than spin doctoring.

The Crown before the privatisation of the Crown forests put in place “Public Access Easements” to give the local and wider communities legal and enduring access across

Paua decline

The Marlborough Sounds are a “jewel” for Marlborough and an area of scenic beauty, an outdoor recreation playground, a tourism asset and with a unique ecosystem in its drowned valleys.

Unfortunately there has been a conflict between commercial users and the natural values.

Often any adverse effects are not obvious

the then to be privatised forests, in this case to give access to the Richmond Forest Park.

I have allowed easements over time across my property, that is I have given the right for these easements to be utilised for the stated purpose which includes legally binding unhindered use for the stated purpose of the easements. Any future purchaser knowingly accepts the existence and obligation to these easements.

One Forty One purchased the forests

being underwater and therefore out of sight. The much discussed matter of heavy and increasing siltation runoff from clear felling of logging commercial pine forests is apparent in over a dozen scientific studies done since 1980.

Very recently the advocacy organisation the Marlborough Recreational Fishers Association has learned of observations by

Alzheimers Book-A-Fair

knowing there were public roads and Public Access Easements through out the forests which were specifically put in place to allow free and enduring access to the Conservation Estate.

We now have this foreign owned entity denying the local and wider communities access to the Richmond Forest Park for recreational activities.

This needs to be challenged and urgently addressed as they are not allowing the ease-

underwater divers of a decline in paua.

Opinion - in the absence of research - from some experienced divers is that the decline could be linked to runoff from pine monocultures. Pines induce an increased acidic chemistry in runoff.

The association would welcome any information from experienced divers and Sounds residents, preparatory to writing to relevant

Alzheimers Marlborough is holding a Book-AFair on the weekend of March 23rd and 24th and is welcoming donations of books which can be

ments to be legally utilised for their stated purpose “Public Access”.

It’s now got to the stage where collectively the local and wider communities need to come together to look at legal avenues to address this situation of Kiwis being shut out of our lands.

Murray Chapman

Marlborough alpine tramper

government ministers and the Marlborough District Council about likely or possible reasons for the paua decline.

Lawrie Stevenson



Recreational Fishers Association.

dropped off at the Alzheimers Centre, 8 Wither Road, Blenheim.

Any money raised stays at Alzheimers Marlborough.

VO E Philip Taylor for Power Trust
NZ Post
Wednesday March 13, 2024 9
A tree branch fell


Graeme Percy’s new car parked

in his Houldsworth Street driveway

causing extensive damage. The tree in question belongs to the Marlborough

District Council.

Branches of the said tree have grown out over neighbouring properties with no action being taken. Graeme takes up the plight with Chris Valli.

All Graeme Percy is wanting and asking of the Marlborough District Council is for someone to tidy up some branches on trees.

Indeed, his biggest gripe is the lack of action in replying to an issue that he deemed as urgent from some personnel at the Marlborough District Council.

On November 14, 2023 Graeme rang the Council on behalf of his tenant (as landlord) and neighbours who were concerned about the ‘decaying state’ of the trees which border Horton Park and their respective properties. It took MDC Graeme says, 38 working days to reply – December 23 - after Graeme sent five emails.

It didn’t help matters when he received Council’s email 48 minutes prior to the MDC offices closing for 12 days during the festive season on December 23 with ‘no option’ to seek professional opinions until January 23.

“I’ve challenged them before and I get a feeling that they would just ignore me. It was classed as urgent and was supposed to be answered but they didn’t give me the courtesy.

I asked for a report on the trees and they sent me one which was 22 months old when the trees were very healthy. It appears, according to the arborist, that the trees have been poisoned along with the native tree across the road,” says Graeme.

He firmly believes and suggests Council ‘knowingly withheld the latest arborist report carried out in late December 2023 and says he is yet to receive that report.

Four years ago, one of the tree branches fell on Graeme’s new car parked in the driveway causing extensive damage - $2000 worth no less

to his roof.

“I/we still await a reply as to why a perfectly healthy tree was felled? The reason given by Council is different to what was stated by the tree feller on the day and witnessed by others….what does three large black rubber bands a while back tell you about the state of this particular tree?”

“I’ve challenged them before and I get a feeling that they would just ignore me”

Graeme says the Council are wrong when they suggest that neighbours want the trees felled. Quite the contrary he says.

“We only request that the trees be cut back to the boundary. During the year of the Wither Hills Boxing Day fire the neighbours watered the trees and gave them homemade liquid seaweed in order of their survival.”

Under the Marlborough District Council Tree Policy (June 2020), the legislation stipulates Council may require removal of overhanging trees if; the Council may, by notice in writing under the hand of the chairman or the principal administrative officer, require the owner of any land abutting upon any road within the district to do any of the following act such as:

To remove, lower, or trim to the satisfaction of the Council any tree or hedge overhanging or overshadowing the road in cases where, in the opinion of the Council, the removal, lowering,

or trimming is necessary in order to prevent injury to the road or obstruction to the traffic thereon or to any channel, ditch, or drain appertaining thereto.

“Council appears to have double standards when it comes to trees overhanging a neighbouring property or public thoroughfare,” says Graeme. “I am sure many ratepayers have been served notice that they have a certain time to trim back to the boundary. If you fail, the Council may do it and charge you and vice versa. The Council appears to have no obligation, even with a court order there is every possibility you will have to pay the cost.”

Graeme made a complaint to the ombudsman (handles complaints about the administrative conduct of public sector agencies) on January 25 on behalf of his neighbours and members of the public.

He adds and says it should be noted on numerous occasions, he has publicly praised the MDC as being amongst the most highly rated Councils within New Zealand. In his opinion, this still applies.

However, he firmly believes there are some senior members in the Council earning high salaries who are failing the rate payers of Marlborough with their cavalier attitude.

“The lack of communication in part betrays the trust we all have within the MDC,” he says. “We have seen this with the recent library debacle and now this. Performance and transparency are paramount. We as ratepayers are entitled to feel safe in our homes and secure in the knowledge that the trees are safe.”

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THE TREES IN QUESTION: Landlord Graeme Percy says their only request to the Marlborough District Council is that the trees be cut back to the boundary.

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With easy access to the nearby Blenheim shops, beautiful parks and the local farmers market, it is easy for friends and family to pop by or for you to enjoy the local area.

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Sun The REDWOOD For residents 65 years and above.
Wednesday March 13, 2024 11

Iona – ‘translation of music to an audience’

Iona Panoho was in the audience when she saw the production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat back in 2013 when Blenheim Musical Theatre last staged it.

Eleven years on, the 21-year-old is now the leading lady and principal as the narrator for the show which takes to the ASB Theatre in May.

“I loved it and knew Jacinta (Riordan) who played the Narrator then. I’ve always enjoyed the music with the various scenes and genres, all the songs are fun to do with jazz, folk and rock,” she says.

“I hadn’t yet played a lead role in a BMT production and I thought I would love to audition for the part. She is on stage a lot and it’s a lot more demanding than what I’ve done before.”

The role of the Narrator tells the story through song, guiding the audience gently through the story of Joseph and his brothers.

“The role tells the story to the children and brings the audience into the story as well. She’s engaging with the characters which she loves.”

With rehearsals in full swing, she is doing up to 9 – 12 hours a week honing her craft through ensemble, character and vocal work.

Iona was home schooled and has grown up in a family where music and performing has been the constant, the stimuli.

“We all grew up doing music, in community concerts or rest homes. Mum and Dad were in BMT’s The Sounds of Music (2010), we’ve always been performing and over the last few years I’ve been diving into it a bit more with the storytelling and musicality. Performance and music is all about translation. About having the work you are doing but communicating through or with an audience in a way people can understand,” she says.

She confesses she is her own critic and says she often looks back on a performance with regards to what can be improved or better. A lot of the technique she says is not as important for a performance, as the storytelling and the connection with people is of utmost importance.

Working alongside Spencer Kingi as Joseph has been wonderful she says through observation and performance.

“He’s great at telling a story purely through his voice which is such a skill. You can feel the whole story of emotion and drama through the sound of his voice,” she says.

Iona says the key learnings have been in the primary role as principal and how that gels with the ensemble, the dynamic and balancing the relationships with the cast and being focused on the role.

“The selling point of the show is how all-inclusive this show is. It involves everyone, younger kids, older people, the costumes are looking spectacular. It’s a fun all-round show.”

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 12 For people living in Marlborough who are not currently enrolled in a General Practice, phone Marlborough Primary Health on 03 520 6200 and ask to be placed on a waitlist. We will help you enrol in a local General Practice. Not enrolled with a GP in Marlborough? Needing Healthcare? For people requiring urgent care, including people who are not a permanent resident, you may visit Marlborough Urgent Care Centre between 8am to 8pm Monday to Sunday. For people wanting free health advice, information and treatment from a healthcare professional, you can contact Healthline 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 0800 611 116. Ph 03 520 6200 | 22 Queen St, Blenheim | www.marlboroughpho.org.nz
Iona says performance and music is all about translation. “About having the work you are doing but communicating through or with an audience in a way people can understand,” she says.

Marlborough kids embrace Nature Connection

Council’s environmental educators have been working alongside teachers and students from Springlands Kindergarten and Spring Creek School to set up Nature Connection Programmes.

Nature Connection is a programme that fosters a more intentional approach to being in the wider environment, encouraging participants to slow down, observe and interact with the physical space.

Environmental Educator

Ramona Millen said Council’s environmental education team hosted a professional Nature Connection educator last year to develop their skills in this area.

Two of the team were also involved in a Nature Connection Community of Practice with the New Zealand Association for Environmental Education (NZAEE), where they gained further knowledge around practical ways to engage students.

“Nature Connection has some well researched benefits, including using our senses more, improving our wellbeing and building a better understanding of the natural world,” Ramona said.

“If they connect with the natural world, research shows children will want to look after it more.”

In term four of 2023, educators teamed up with Spring Creek

School and Springlands

Kindergarten to help them establish their own Nature Connection Programmes.

The schools run the programmes slightly differently, but they use the same philosophy and teaching strategies.

Ten of the oldest children from Springlands Kindergarten are taken to Shep’s Park for three hours once a fortnight, while Spring Creek School students use their own environment, with some extension into a neighbouring property. The whole school is involved for up to four hours on a Monday.

“Invitations to explore are set up in each session to support children in connecting with the environment. This could include magnifying glasses, tarps and ropes for hut building, clay or nature scavenger hunts.

Children are empowered to lead their own exploration and engage with the environment in ways that interest them,” Ramona said.

Both programmes have had multiple positive outcomes for all involved.

“Children’s confidence has grown, relationships have developed and strengthened. They are more observational and take notice of what is around them and are active,” Ramona said.

Funding available to insulate Marlborough homes

If you are a Marlborough homeowner living in a home built before 2008, you may be eligible for home insulation funding.

The Warmer Healthier Homes Te Tau Ihu Charitable Trust (WHH) is providing top up funding to a Government-funded initiative that provides funding for ceiling and underfloor insulation, taking the entire cost away for some homeowners.

The Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority’s (EECA) Warmer Kiwi Homes programme provides up to 90 per cent of the cost of ceiling and underfloor insulation for homes that meet the criteria.

Thanks to WHH, people living in Marlborough Deprivation areas 8, 9 and 10, or Community Service Cardholders can have their homes insulated at no cost.

The initiative is designed to help make homes warmer, drier and healthier for residents.

Despite the recent hot weather, now is the time to start thinking about creating healthy homes for the winter, Economic, Community and Support Services Manager Dean Heiford said.

Funding is available to help eligible homeowners insulate their homes. Credit: Warmer Kiwi Homes

all homeowners to take the time to check their eligibility and apply for funding to help keep themselves and their families healthy, and their homes in good condition,” he said.

“We know that when people are living in well-insulated homes, they have lower energy bills, are faced with fewer colds and flu, and are less likely to be taking extended time away from work or school due to illness.”

Eligibility criteria includes:

• the homeowner must permanently occupy the home

• the homeowner has a Community Services Card or SuperGold combo card, OR the home is in an area identified as low income. As well as funding for ceiling and underfloor insulation, homeowners may also be eligible for a heating grant if they meet the above criteria and don’t already have an efficient heater or fire in the main living area.

• the home must have been built before 2008

• the home does not have adequate insulation

Mayor meets with Rural Communities Minister

“This is a collaborative programme designed to help our communities keep warm, and most importantly healthy, throughout our cold Marlborough winters. We encourage Mayor Nadine Taylor met with Rural Communities Minister Mark Patterson during a visit to the province last week.

Mr Patterson, who is also Associate Minister of Agriculture and an Otago farmer with more than 30 years’ farming

Autumn Events

experience, was Chairperson for Otago Federated Farmers from 2021 to 2023. He was here to meet with members of the Marlborough farming community to discuss the current drought situation and hear their concerns.

You can check your eligibility at: www.eeca.govt.nz/cofunding-and-support/products/ warmer-kiwi-homes-programme/ check-eligibility/ or contact Marlborough contractor Absolute Energy on 0800 423 454 directly if you think you may be eligible.

Autumn Events

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 13
follow-me.co.nz 1 March - 31 May 2024 Pick up your copy from Marlborough District Council FOLLOW-ME.CO.NZ
Mia Vienings from Springlands Kindergarten takes part in the Nature Connection Programme.

‘Active and singing at 100’

New Zealander Arthur Porritt won the bronze medal in the 100 metre sprint at the Paris Olympics in 1924 with the race later dramatised in the film Chariots of Fire. More importantly, in 1924, Gwendolyn (Gwen) Nilsen was born.

The centenarian celebrated her 100th birthday on Monday with afternoon tea at Ashwood Park.

Gwen was born on 11 March 1924 at Wakatu, Nelson where she grew up on a small farm with three brothers and a sister. One of her jobs was to churn the butter and sell it around the neighbourhood. Although she was dux of Hampden Street School in 1936 she did not go on to college but initially stayed home to help her mother run the household.

During the war, at 18 she was sent

to Wellington to become a telephone operator and remembers the joyous celebrations down Willis Street when the announcement was made that the war was over. She returned to Nelson and met and married Peter, celebrating 70 years of marriage before he sadly passed away two years ago. Together they had three daughters and a son and led an adventurous and happy life moving around New Zealand for Peter’s career. Gwen was a devoted wife and mother.

Since last year Gwen has been a resident of Ashwood Park. She is still active and particularly enjoys their singing activities.

Gwen has five grandchildren and 11 great grandchildren. Extended family from around New Zealand are gathering over the weekend to celebrate her milestone achievement.

Relocation grant –‘attractive option’

Some of Marlborough’s early childhood teachers are ‘potentially’ being poached by the Australian state of Victoria, with promises of incentives and financial relocation support.

The ‘Best Start, Best Life’ campaign by the Victorian government, encourages people to move from New Zealand to teach kindergarten, with the quote “come for the career, stay for the lifestyle”.

Kiwis are told there is a job for everyone, from the big city of metropolitan Melbourne to rural areas across the state.

“With record investment and significant reforms there is a high demand for head teachers and teachers within kindergarten services,” the advertisement campaign states.

Location incentives for Victoria range from $9000 to $50,000, depending on the location and services.

Two local early childhood teachers spoken to the Sun Newspaper last week, who didn’t want to be named, say the campaign is a ‘no brainer’ and suggest there needs to be similar incentives to stay in the region.

One teacher spoken to says the relocation grant was an attractive option and says she was in talks with a potential employer in the coming weeks, adding she had to think about her financial future with the cost of living crisis in this country a reason to relocate.

However, New Zealand Ministry of Education workforce leader Anna Welanyk pointed out the overseas relocation grant provides up to $10,000 towards a teacher’s costs of moving to New Zealand.

“In any year we would expect some teachers to leave New Zealand and others to arrive from overseas to teach in New Zealand,” she said, adding that choice is based on many factors, including personal circumstances.

“We have confidence that New Zealand is actively positioning itself as a destination of choice for international teachers.”

Kiwi ECE teacher Imogen, who didn’t want her surname published, is one of the many people looking to make the move across the ditch.

Imogen says ECE has been in crisis for years and says ‘with the direction this new Government seems to be taking us in, we appear to be going backwards.’

The early childhood educator added teachers “left the sector in droves” following prior funding freezes.

A survey conducted by NZEI Te Riu Roa shows over the past six months, 68 per cent of workers in the sector have considered leaving.

Imogen hopes ratios of teachers to students are “changed”, calling the current system “unsafe and unworkable”.

Early Childhood Council chief executive Simon Laube said there was “really strong demand from parents” for ECE teachers to remain in New Zealand.

“Just look at Wellington - we’re still losing services in Wellington. Let’s face it - there is a huge teacher shortage in New Zealand.” Council of Trade Unions Economist Craig Renney believes it “makes perfect sense” for Australia to try and pinch Kiwi workers, with support for people wanting to make the move and additional funding promises for families.

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 14 [Type here] Living Well with Dementia Course Wednesday 10th and 17th August 10am until 12.30pm At St Andrews Presbyterian Church 5 Henry Street, Central, Blenheim be to one Please phone Alzheimers Marlborough 03 5776172 before the 5th of August 2022 to register. Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th of March 2024 9am – 3.30pm At Alzheimers Centre, 8 Wither Road, Blenheim $3 a book - huge selection! Donations of GOOD quality books (all genre welcome), puzzles etc. Please drop donations off at our centre. Book – A – Fair
Two local early childhood teachers spoken to the Sun Newspaper, who didn’t want to be named, say the campaign is a ‘no brainer’ and suggests there needs to be similar incentives for teachers to stay in the region. Ashwood Park resident Gwendolyn (Gwen) Nilsen celebrated her 100th birthday on Monday. PHOTO: Jo Patchett

2024 Te Pūkenga Festival Chef

The Havelock Mussel and Seafood Festival is proud to be partnering with local Te Pūkenga Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology (NMIT) for another year to bring the 2024 Te Pūkenga Festival Chef cooking competition.

Scheduled to take place in the NZ King

Eclectix Fix

Eclectic Fix is a proud Marlborough bunch of musicians who started as a four-piece group and grew.

Some have been playing together since 1992 and have a wide range of skills includ-

Live entertainment on the Gascoigne Wicks Main Stage:

• 10.00am Gates open

• 10.30am MC Tasha and Official Opening

• 11.00am QCC Kapa Haka

• 11.30am Eclectic Fix

• 12.45pm JOLA BURNS

• 1.45pm Brad Stanley

• 3.30pm Hollie Smith

• 4.45pm Lost Tribe Aotearoa

• 6.00pm Festival closes

In the New Zealand King Salmon Culinary Tent:

• 10.15 - 10.45am Te Pukenga NMIT Festival Chef Cooking Comp (u18)

• 11.00am Marlborough Oysters Demo

• 11.45am Te Pukenga NMIT Festival

Salmon Culinary Tent at the 2024 festival on March 16.

The community cooking competition is open to all ages and all abilities, with the focus being on creating a Kai Moana dish highlighting NZ King Salmon and/or NZ Greenshell Mussels.

ing arranging their own versions of songs and playing multiple instruments. The band loves playing a variety of genres to meet most music tastes and their set lists are always eclectic.

Chef Cooking Comp (over 18)

• 12.45pm Chef Zennon Wijlens

• 2.00pm Crafting the Ultimate Mussel Experience The Mills Bay Mussel vision

• 2.30pm Regal Salmon “aburi” - the art of torched salmon

• 3.30pm Mills Bay Mussels Raw Shucking Competition

Go Media Mussel Opening Competition

Intercompany mussel opening competition. See some of the industry guns at work!

• 11.15am Competitions Start

• 12.20 - 12.50pm Lunch break

• 1.45pm Prize giving

• 2.00pm Guinness World Book of Records attempt


Grant and Christine are proud to support the Havelock Mussel and Seafood Festival on the 20th anniversary of this iconic event.

68 Main Road, Havelock | foursquare.co.nz

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Prostate cancer information evening

A sharing of knowledge and information is the focus of an upcoming information evening for men in the Marlborough region with prostate cancer.

Prostate cancer occurs when abnormal cells develop in the prostate. These cells have the potential to continue to multiply, and possibly spread beyond the prostate. The growth of cancer cells in the prostate is stimulated by male hormones, especially testosterone.

Marlborough Prostate Cancer Support Group and Prost-Fit Coordinator Murray Eyles says there will be guest organisations from within the medical fraternity of Marlborough, Nelson and Christchurch for the evening.

“To me a good outcome is even if we help one man then it’s well worth it, but it’s more about sharing information as one thing that I’ve learnt is that once a man gets the diagnosis then not much else gets past the word Cancer,” says Murray.

“Hopefully the evening will allow any men and their partners to talk without having to stand-up and ask questions, with a cuppa in

Text your thoughts to:

027 242 5266

their hand they can just go and chat with the appropriate person,” says Murray.

Meanwhile, The Prostate Cancer Foundation Prost-FIT programme is a nationwide network of exercise classes for men to help them before, during and after prostate cancer treatment. Prost-FIT classes are built around the aspects of training that research has shown are beneficial for men with prostate cancer.

They include pelvic floor strengthening exercises, cardiovascular fitness and strength training routines. The programme also combats fatigue, facilitates mental well-being, provides social support and is, most importantly, fun!

The feedback Murray says from local men that attend Prost-FIT classes at the Stadium is as important as the monthly meetings as they are in amongst men who have the same diagnosis but maybe different treatment.

Prost-FIT classes are held in Blenheim on Mondays at 6.00pm and Wednesdays at 10.30am at Marlborough Lines Stadium 2000 on Kinross Street.

To find out more about coming along to a trial class, contact either

Murray on marlborough@prostate.org.nz or 027 608 5667, or Phil Taylor on tiger90phil@gmail.com or 021 935 644.

Murray says he would like to acknowledge the amazing response he has received from the sup -

porting organisations and groups willing to share their knowledge with the people of Marlborough Prostate cancer is the country’s most commonly diagnosed cancer (apart from skin cancer). Every year more than 4000 men are

‘Supporting Marlborough’s economy’

Port Marlborough remains focused on driving success for Marlborough, through their strategy of People, Planet, and Prosperity through Partnerships.

A Port Marlborough half year report released last week says despite the disappointment around the iReX project discontinuation, key deliveries over the reporting period included launching the Waitohi Container Yard and the official opening of Waikawa North West marina, with both supporting Marlborough’s economy and

responding to market needs.

The report says the port’s focus on safety has included work with the RMTU (Railway and Maritime Transport Union) on fatigue management and a deep dive into critical risks with ‘zero lost time injuries for the period’.

Recruitment efforts brought in additional expertise to the team to align the management structure to strategy, as well as extending opportunities for cadets and apprentices.

The port’s environmental team began work on establishing a native forest in the port’s Shakespeare Bay

land holdings and bolstered the environmental skillset of the team with the employment of a new Environmental Manager.

A highlight was the kawenata signed with manawhenua iwi of Waitohi Picton and Waikawa, Te Ātiawa o te Waka a Maui, demonstrating the port’s commitment to being a good iwi partner.

The kawenata focuses on collaboration and finds ways to coordinate efforts for projects of mutual importance, such as environmental initiatives, and in opportunities to co-host manuhiri (guests).

diagnosed with the disease and over 700 die.

The Prostate Cancer Information

Evening is on Tuesday, March 19, 7:15pm at the Nativity Church Hall. The evening is open to the public, all welcome.

EBITDA for the period is up 9% on the previous comparative period (HY2022), at $9.5m.

Despite economic challenges, the port’s diverse business portfolio has led to a strong result, showcasing effective strategy and operations.

The reports says the outlook for the remainder of the year is positive.

CEO Rhys Welbourn says they express their gratitude to the community, customers, and partners for their support during this period.

“A special thanks to our port team, whose efforts were essential in achieving these results,” says Rhys.

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 16 If you know a farmer, grower, or rural services provider that deserves to be recognised – nominate them today. Scan the QR code or visit www.odt.co.nz/rural-champions. Nominations close May 15, 2024. RURAL CHAMPIONS WE ARE ON THE HUNT FOR A ���� SOUTH ISLAND RURAL CHAMPION Scan here VO E
hilip Taylor for Power Trust
Marlborough Prostate Cancer Support Group and Prost-Fit Coordinator Murray Eyles says the evening will allow any men and their partners to talk and learn about prostate cancer.
txt talk

Being part of a Volunteer Fire Brigade is probably more different than you think.

Almost anybody can join a brigade, male or female, young or old, those looking for adventure or those just wanting to contribute to their community.

There are opportunities for people from all backgrounds within a Volunteer Fire Brigade.

The role you play in a brigade depends completely on what you would like to do.

You can be hands-on at an emergency, or you can provide support to those people who are. You can even

have a role that doesn’t expose you to emergency incidents.

The one aspect the roles all have in common is that they require you to attend a weekly Brigade training night, and that you participate in brigade activities

Operational Firefighter

These people respond to emergencies. They drive the Appliances, make up the crew at fires, medical, hazardous substance and other incidents.

They are the front line members of the brigade. Training is supplied to ensure they can do their jobs safely, and to the best of their ability.

Operational Firefighters carry rank, which is related to their qualifications and skills. Often the qualifications and skills that people gain from being a Volunteer Firefighter are beneficial in other parts of their lives.

Operational Support

As the title suggests, these people support operational Firefighters on the incident ground, by carrying out tasks that are non-hazardous to free up Firefighters for more specific tasks. These duties include: people and traffic control, transporting of equipment, assisting the incident

controller, and other duties that are not in the incident hot zone.

Training is supplied and operational support staff carry rank to ensure structure at an incident is maintained.

Brigade Support

This role allows people who want to contribute to the brigade and community the opportunity to do so without having to face the challenge of responding to emergencies. It can be an important role, like providing administrative support for the day-to-day running of the brigade, or more hands-on, like presenting fire safety programs to

‘Being able to help the community’

The Marlborough community certainly relies on volunteers across various organisations. When it comes to Volunteer Firefighters you can’t go past Seddon’s Johnny Everett for the impact he has had on the community.

Johnny has been involved as a volunteer firefighter in the wider Marlborough community for 16 years after joining in November 2008. Johnny helps the region prevent, prepare, respond and recover from emergencies. He is also a Senior Fire Fighter with the Seddon Fire Brigade.

The Havelock Volunteer Fire Brigade attend around 70-80 calls a year ranging from MVAs (motor vehicle

accidents), fires, false alarms, weather event, boats sinking and line rescues.

Johnny says the greatest buzz about being a volunteer firefighter is being able to help the community and being there to help people in need.

One of the more unique callouts he recalls is when he had to rescue a dog off a cliff and being bitten for his troubles.

Johnny says he has found that all the brigades in Marlborough ‘all look out of each other’ when they are on a job and says often they take the mickey out of each other the rest of the time.

He has lived just outside of Seddon since 2007 and commutes to Havelock where he works as Operations Manager and Senior Skipper for

Johnson’s Barge Services. Day to day operations is undertaken by the management team consisting of Johnny, Kim Weatherhead and Jared Rowe.

Johnsons Barge Services work with the Marlborough District Council to provide services for Sounds residents, farmers, visitors and contractors affected by recent flood damage, road closures and restrictions.

“We have an awesome team at Johnson’s who all work really well together,” he says. “Being able to help training the young guys to get their Skipper’s tickets and giving them the confidence to step up and have a go at skipping the barges is awesome,” says Johnny.

community groups like schools or the elderly.

For all of these roles, people bring with them skills and attributes that benefit the brigade. They all in return gain many skills and attributes that benefit them in other parts of their life.

The Firefighters’ role includes the roles of Operational Support and Brigade Support.

The Operational Support role includes the role of Brigade Support. Essentially, you get to choose your level of involvement.

To find out more contact your nearest Fire Station.

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 17 Firefighters & Emergency Services Supporting the community • Saving lives • Making a difference • Driveways • Culvert Installation • Site Excavation • Soak Pits • Farm Drainage • also Vineyard Development & Maintenance GRAVEL & TOPSOIL SUPPLIES NEWMAN EXCAVATIONS 14 HIGH STREET, RENWICK PHONE WK 027 446 4230 PHONE A/H (03) 572 8758 FAX (03) 572 8896 EMAIL: newman.excavations@xtra.co.nz NEWMAN EXCAVATIONS 14 HIGH STREET, RENWICK PHONE WK 027 446 4230 PHONE A/H (03) 572 8758 FAX (03) 572 8896 EMAIL: newman.excavations@xtra.co.nz SPECIALISING IN... Proud to employ a Renwick Firefighter 14 HIGH STREET, RENWICK | PHONE WK 027 446 4230 | PHONE A/H (03) 572 8758 FAX (03) 572 8896 | EMAIL: newman.excavations@xtra.co.nz Become a volunteer
Volunteer Fire Fighter Johnny Everett says being in the brigade is like a brotherhoodm with plenty of good natured banter. Proud to employ a Volunteer Fire Fighter

Employers also play a vital role

When the fire service calls it’s not just the volunteer firefighters who answer, it’s also their employers.

Every working day businesses across Marlborough support local brigades by allowing their volunteers to respond to incidents.

By employing a volunteer firefighter these businesses become an essential part of the support crew because without their support, it would be difficult for

Check your alarms

Mark Sunday night, April 7, in your diary.

That’s the night you turn your clocks back an hour as daylight saving ends.

Traditionally it’s the date the Fire Service uses to remind you to check your fire alarms and batteries.

And for those who can’t reach theirs easily, fire brigades all over the country offer a special service. They will come and check your alarms and their batteries, ensure they are in the right place and if necessary advise you about replacing them with up-to-date and safer models.

Just contact your local fire service to ask about this.

volunteers to attend emergencies during work hours.

Not only do businesses gain a sense of community pride, but their volunteer firefighter employees also offer a number of transferable skills they’ve developed during their training with Fire and Emergency.

The training, skills and experience gained by emergency services volunteers are transferrable to the workplace. Emergency services volunteers are not only

trained in technical activities, but develop high levels of personal skill and competencies. Emergency service volunteering requires commitment, the ability to cope with high pressure, and the determination to help others.

Volunteers gain training in areas such as:

• Confidence and teamwork

• Navigation and problem solving

• Emergency management and


Josh Gregory has been a firefighter since April 2021, with both Picton and Koromiko Fire Brigades.

Josh lives in Picton and works as a CNC waterjet operator at Gregory engineering. The role involves Josh preparing and operating high water pressure jet to process and produce high quality products.

Like firefighting, the job he says is fulfilling when it comes to helping customers when they have an emergency job come in, being able to fit it in and get it out as fast as he can, can be very satisfying.

He says there is great fulfilment from responding and helping someone on their worst days and ‘being there’ for the community.

“I’d say there definitely is a brotherhood between most brigades in Marlborough. It is good to see how we can all turn up on a scene and together, rather seamlessly, put our training into action working

decision making

• Effective communication (both oral and technical)

• Health and safety

• Technical and mechanical training

• Leadership, delegation and following instructions

• First aid

Thank you to all of the Marlborough businesses who support Fire and Emergency by supporting their volunteer firefighter employees.

together cohesively. Camaraderie for sure.” Josh is part of a crew that are climbing the sky tower in full Firefighting Gear in May to raise funds to go towards awareness for Leukaemia & Blood Cancer New Zealand. Link for donations is https://firefighterschallenge.org.nz/t/picton-volunteer-fire-brigade

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 18 Firefighters & Emergency Services Supporting the community • Saving lives • Making a difference When experience counts talk to us P: 578 0850 | 47 Grove Rd, Blenheim www.viridianglass.co.nz We are proud to employ a Volunteer Firefighter Come to us for the right adviCe. 24 hour serviCe Internal & external paint work Roof painting • Internal plastering Water blasting • Spray painting Wallpaper hanging General ManaGer Shawn PurSer 027 766 5724 shawn@masterpiecepaint.co.nz Find out more about our courses and how we can help you at www.reapmarlborough.co.nz Phone 03 578 7848 65 Seymour Street, Blenheim Supporting our community through Education Grateful for the efforts of our local firefighters Servicing Marlborough and beyond for over 40 years 15 Kent Street, Picton | P: 03 573 6223 gregoryengineering.co.nz
us online at blenheimsun.co.nz
Gregory Engineering’s Josh Gregory is in training for the Firefighter Sky Tower Challenge 2024 in May.

Nelson/Marlborough Firefighter Challenge

Last month, the Havelock Volunteer Fire Brigade hosted the 2024 NMPFBA (Nelson Marlborough Provincial Fire Brigade Association) Firefighter Challenge. Teams from as far afield as Takaka, Motueka and even Gisborne took part in hot conditions, in full gear whilst wearing breathing apparatus. The competition involves five disciplines – carrying

a 20kg hose to the top of a tower then using a rope to pull another 20kg hose to the top of that same tower, followed by shifting a 60kg steel bar with a rubber mallet, slalom run, a run with a fully charged hose and, the grand finale, dragging an 82kg dummy a distance of 30 metres.

The individual winner on the day was Kyle Gardiner from Takaka in an unbelievable time of one minute 30 seconds.

At the conclusion of the indi-

vidual races came the teams’ event with completion of the same tasks being done in a relay by up to five competitors from each brigade.

In the final, Blenheim Station held what looked to be an unassailable lead over Havelock going into the last leg, the dragging of the dummy.

However, spurred on by the roar of the crowd Havelock seemed to pull off the impossible making up significant ground then catching and pass-

ing Blenheim on the finish line. Their jubilation was shortlived when a judge ruled one of their team, through no fault of their own, had slipped on the tower and incurred a time penalty for what was deemed to be an uncontrolled descent.

It was enough to give Blenheim the win.

Some of the competitors now turn their attention to the South Island Regional champs in March which this year are hosted by Invercargill.

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Firefighter Ryan Anderson of Blenheim Rural Brigade is pushed through his paces in the Nelson Marlborough Provincial Fire Brigade Association Firefighter Challenge last month. Photos: Sue Henley Photography. A Firefighter completes a drill at the recent Provincial Firefighter Challenge.
news tips Send your tips to news@blenheimsun.co.nz

MEPT candidates have their say

Voting is now underway in the 2024 Marlborough Electric Power Trust Election. There are three trustee positions to fill. The Blenheim Sun contacted the candidates for their view on what is important to Marlborough power consumers, and what they will bring to the role if elected.

Voting closes at 12 noon, Monday 25th March.

The MEPT holds 100% of Marlborough Lines shares on behalf of the beneficiaries - the people of Marlborough - and its role is to act in their best interests.

Together with my colleagues, Simon and Brendon, I will bring transparency and accountability to ensure every decision is in the best interests of the community, both as a power supplier and as a community-owned investment.

We will prioritise wise allocation of investment capital and paying down debt to restore business profitability. We will not over-promise and under-deliver, as has happened in the past.

Current trustees approved/ support the Yealands investment with the failed promise of a month’s free power, so important to many in our community.

Yealands ongoing $90m debt continues to make life difficult for us all. That includes Marlborough Lines where it puts pressure on its ability to fund upgrades, keep lines charges down and develop solar and wind options.

My co-candidates and I will do what the trust is there for – represent our interest as owners and ensure directors comply. Please vote for all three of us to achieve this – Brendon Burns, Belinda Jackson and Simon Bishell.

Reliable, resilient, cost-ef fective electricity supply to as much of our region as practicable is vital to our continued quality of life, and regional growth.

Challenges exist with climate change, carbon emissions, and increased demands for electric vehicles, light industry, and population growth. I look forward to being involved with Marlborough’s future energy development.

The Yealands investment has become a distraction; whether it should have been purchased is irrelevant. Focus must now be on the future, and I believe there is a prudent, financially responsible way forward, based on commercial facts and informed intelligence.

Vote Brian Nicholas for impartial honest governance.

I help people in Marlborough tell their stories, as a self-employed communications specialist.

I’ve worked at many levels in the energy sector, including working for the Minister of Energy during a high-profile electricity supply crisis.

I’m on the national board of Energy Trusts New Zealand and I’m active in many community organisations, including as chair of Mistletoe Bay Trust. I’ve got a track record of delivering on my promises.

I am focused on ensuring electricity is available through a reliable supply, that we explore renewable opportunities, and making sure all of Marlborough can share in the opportunities possible by decarbonising and electrifying our region.

I’ll continue to ensure Marlborough Lines is successful, helps our community and benefits our consumers.

• Last year Marlborough Lines gave $11.4 million in discounts and dividends to consumers.

• Local community received over $400,000 in sponsorship and scholarships.

• The value of our shares has doubled in 9 years, reaching $516.7 million.

• The network is safe and reliable, supporting our region’s growth.

• New investments in renewable energy support a greener future and good returns.

As a current trustee, I represent your interests. I’ll keep working to keep things affordable and ensuring Marlborough Lines is a company we can all be proud of.

I am standing for MEPT due to concerns about financial pressures being placed on Marlborough Lines, resulting from the chronic underperformance of its investment in Yealands Wine Group.

When Yealands was bought, unrealistic promises were made to consumers regarding profits. Not only are you missing out on meaningful distributions off your power bill, a lack of cash flow back to Marlborough Lines means it now must fund some network maintenance with bank debt, to keep your lights on.

Along with Brendon Burns and Belinda Jackson, I will fight for consumers to ensure Marlborough Lines Directors have beneficiaries’ interests first and foremost.

My main reasons for standing as a candidate for the Marlborough Electric Power Trust, is to ensure Marlborough Lines remains 100% owned by the Trust for the benefit of the consumer.

Secondly, to encourage the Trust and Marlborough Lines to pursue alternative energy sources such as solar power and to conserve energy. Furthermore, to ensure the continuation of the discount credited to consumers accounts each year, and to receive better returns.

We deserve better. For better accountability please vote for Philip Taylor.

I am standing for the power trust to create change.

I spent many years as Chair of Marlborough Lines so have a complete understanding of the Company.

I am a Lawyer by occupation and well qualified on administering Trusts and the role of a Trustee.

The main change I would seek to bring about is an emphasis on recruiting young Marlburians for both training and appointment to the Board. We owe it to our future leaders to find them and back them.

Marlborough Lines needs to improve its investment outcomes also once again by backing the right people with skills.

Held at Woodbourne Tavern, Renwick

Doors open from 5pm for 6pm Buffet Dinner

Music from Acoustic Boomtown followed by Bitter End from 8.30pm

Live Auction, Silent Auction & Raffles

Tickets $100pp (Min. 2 tickets of max of 10 for a table)

Don’t fancy the dinner? Pop along from 8.30pm for the Dance. Koha on the door to show us your moves!

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 20 80 High Street, Renwick | Phone 03 572 8007 info@woodbournetavern.co.nz www.woodbournetavern.co.nz It’s always a GOODY at the WOODY!
Belinda Jackson David Dew Brian Nicholas Philip Taylor Brendon Burns Nicki Stretch Cathie Bell Simon Bishell

Death Notices

Re My fight to get health care in Blenheim

I hope Natalia has laid formal complaints against all the doctors concerned. And next time please name said doctors in your article.

Our Local MP

Sun leads the way with monthly death notices ... great to see ... I try to read every week but sometimes I miss ... well done.


Lovely to see Chantilly Cafe in Queen St open now on Saturdays. Lovely people and food also


Is anybody else affected by the horrible dust from the Summerset village construction site on Old Renwick Road?

Re Stands for

You ask how can Luxon morally stand before the people of NZ when his govt are forcing others into poverty - well don’t blame him. Blame the idiots that voted in labour at last election. It was they who caused the downward spiral of NZ along with Jacinda.

Big ups

Article in the news on some fathers hiding income so they don’t have to pay as much child support. This is nothing new having experienced the very same with my own children 25yrs ago. Plummeted to $5 per week. What decent father does this? Bitterness. Not thinking how it affects their own flesh and blood. Sad but it happens.

Big ups to the good parents that do still provide adequately after a marriage split.

Picton Streets

PLEASE can we in Picton have our streets back, Broadway, Dublin, Dorset, no work being done so we need our access again.

Re Kenepuru Residents

How about no one out that way pay your rates until roading is repaired. Council can’t take you all to court!

America today

Has anyone noticed how America today looks like the fall of the Roman empire?

Does anyone remember who our local MP is? Silence and invisibility has struck since his Govt has hit the Electorate hard.

Are we going to get there?

When our very important leader, Baron Luxon boards the Airforce 757 to head away somewhere, his first thought would be, “are we going to get there”, and there is outrage when once again the aircraft breaks down and there are cries for something better. It’s an embarrassment they cry.

But so too do 1000 or so Interislander ferry passengers have the same thoughts each time they venture out on the Cook Strait crossing. We need something better, they cry. But Dame Nicola sniffs. A second hand Toyota Corolla type ferry is all that’s required here she states, “let’s not go getting above our standings” she says. Who are we all to question that then!


I have found the Lines Trust’s website informative and easy to follow. Perhaps the Troika should visit it, read and better still understand what the Trust Deed allows Trustees to do.

Re: Marlborough Roads

The text was referring to the site rails barrier fence on the State Highway 1 at Riverlands and Grovetown nothing to do with signage.

Re: Humorless

For a start it’s humour, who are you referring to? I’ve looked and can’t find the text.

Re: Opportunity

The Stadium Cafe in Blenheim definitely has ice creams and possibly Table Top Cafe in Scott St.

Debate taken

A recent text from one of your readers regarding a group of regulars at one bar in town who lacked a sense of humor seems to have attracted different reactions from your readers. I’m wondering whether the person who sent in the original text, Humorless, could be one and the same who sent in the text, reel them In, just a thought.

Bizarre cat

To the people in Kinloch Cres & Milford Street who know about the bizarre cat that steals our shoes, gloves, t-shirts, almost anything. If you find ‘odd’ shoes or garments in your garden PLEASE don’t throw them out. Please place in the box outside No. 18 Kinloch Cres on the grass so we can get our items back. We have lost many pairs of good shoes as 1 is often stolen and lost.

Thank you !

Post Shop Closure

Really disappointed to see NZ Post closing at Springlands at end of month. Ladies said pharmacy not renewing lease. So much easier to get a park out there than town. And lovely staff loosing their jobs. Thank you ladies for your wonderful service

Supporting the Supporters

Supporting families is an amazing community service.

I was surprised to hear the staff are funded by the ministry of health but all other costs they have to apply for local funding to lease their building and bills etc.

It is situated in Henry Street in the old women’s refuge building . If you could spare some $ to help this awesome service, I am sure they would welcome your kind donation .

Chesterton’s fence

Don’t take down a fence without understanding why it was put up in the first place. GK ‘Chesterton’s fence is the principle that reforms should not be made until the reasoning behind the existing state of affairs is understood (Wikipedia). Too late for our wild species, beaches and forests.

Nothing wrong

What is wrong with Blenheim’s water supply, nothing. It’s like chlorination by stealth. Who is that moves the bar for safe water leave us alone in blenheim

User pays?

Sad that our rates going up for something that most Most Marlborough people will not use but Council decides ratepayers will have too pay, sad. Why do we not have user pays in the form of toll roads. That way user pays. Come on council think about it instead of hitting ratepayers all the time.

Talk of the week

Very cute

Lovely to see the children from Springlands Best Start Kindergarten with their beautiful sunhats on. They all looked very cute. Well done!

Springlands Post Shop

So sad this will close, I use this Post Shop regularly as I live nearby and appreciate the parking right outside. Will be painful to have to go to town to post packages etc when this closes.

Seymour Square Beauty

Yeah we all do a bit of moaning of what’s going on around the town.

I am no exception. But I went to pay rates the other day, and while walking back to my car, I stopped and looked at the beauty of Seymour Square, fountain going, immaculate gardens. So well done to the gardeners. What a treat for visitors arriving to Blenheim. I would sooner walk the parks than the roads counting potholes.

We welcome your texts on 027 242 5266.

Limit to 70 words please. We reserve the right to publish at our discretion. Please note the opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the Sun management.


Maybe this substantial rates rise will include the small area of New Renwick Road Burleigh being upgraded and connected to the town sewer system,

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 21
maka EARLY LEARNING CENTRE OPENING MID 2019 Visit www.omakaelc.nz
Providing quality care and education for children aged 3 months - 5 years, Omaka is a space for children to grow, explore and flourish as unique individuals, through a child-led, nature play based environment, where children are given the wings to fly.
Got an important issue to share with Marlborough? Text your thoughts to 027 242 5266 Sun The txt talk with


minutes with...

Patrick Perkin

Old school mechanic Redwood Service Centre

 Are you a dog or cat person?

Definitely a dog person.

 My friends would say I am…


 The best advice I ever received was?

Don’t fix what ain’t broken.

 What would you buy if money was no object?

A chance.

 Local coffee haunt?

Haven Café.

 Favourite takeaway?

Fresh seafood cooked over a fire.

 The shop you can’t walk past is...? Henderson’s.

 What’s the most thoughtful gift you’ve ever received?


 Where is your happy holiday place?

New Zealand bush off the beaten track.

 Favourite programme or series currently watching?

Outback Car Hunters.

 What’s one thing on your bucket list?

Travel as many 4wd tracks on mainland NZ as I can.

Potting mixes: By Wally

Having been part of the horticulture industry for most of my working life I have noted many changes and one which I and others find most annoying is that potting mixes are now of very poor quality followed by poor quality compost purchased in bags.

One of the reasons for such poor quality in potting mixes is the lack of them using peat moss which has increased in price and restricted in harvesting because of possible CO2 released into atmosphere.

In fact I thought it was not available anymore till I did a web search and see that you can obtain it at a price.

Bark fines which are a by product from the forestry industry are cheap and that is what most potting mixes have as their base material these days, often along with bits of the trees as well.

Compost is not much better. Compost made from green waste should be good stuff, that is except that people using herbicides and taking the grass clippings and herbicide effected plants to the green recycling places means you get a nice dose of chemical herbicide to affect plants in your gardens.

Put that around your roses, tomatoes, beans and potatoes and see the funny feathery new growths that appear.

That effect is not noticed on many plant or vegetables but certainly another poison in your food chain.

Potting mixes for your indoor container plants, you need to make your own out of suitable materials such as sphagnum peat moss or coco coir.

Recipe: 2 parts pre-moistened peat moss or coco coir, 1 part perlite or pumice, 1/4 – 1/2 part vermiculite.

You can purchase some or all the above from either Garden Shops or Mitre 10 gardener places.

You can also purchase on line from the likes of https://seaclifforganics.nz/

Then you need to add some nutrition for the plants to grow on.

The likes of worm casts, kelp powder and Wallys Neem Tree Powder which also helps control soil insect pests such as root mealy bugs.

Another one is to add a little sieved garden soil to your potting mix that you make.

To do this get a sieve - the one you use in the kitchen will do and put about a hand full of dry soil from a vegetable garden into the sieve.

Place over a bucket and work the soil through the strainer. You should have soil fines as a result then discard the soil left in the sieve.

There maybe some small weed seeds that also escaped into the bucket so best keep the sieved material a little moist for a couple of weeks to see if any germinate.

Soil can be added to your home made potting mix at the rate of 1: 10 to advantage but no more than that.

In days gone by nurseries sending out plants in bags or containers used to add one tenth of clean top soil to their container mixes.

They stopped doing that when freight costs went up and the extra weight increased the cost of shipping.

Making a batch of home made potting mix

and keeping it in a plastic rubbish tin with lid for future use is a good idea.

This week I purchased from Egmont Weeds a special cucumber that I love to grow called Cucumber Iznik Mini F1 Hybrid which I have now planted in one of my glasshouses.

I have grown this cucumber in the past and found that it will preform very well giving finger sized to medium size cucumbers well into winter.

If picked at finger size they are a lovely crisp, crunchy cucumber with a tangy flavour.

If allowed to keep growing you have a medium size cucumber to slice for eating.

If you have a glasshouse and a 20cm or larger container like a black plastic bucket then plant the 5 seeds (thats what is in the packet) and enjoy cucumbers in a couple of months time.

Last weeks article on Serious Stuff brought a number of confirmation replies from gardeners that have also noticed that things in the garden and sky are not what they used to be.

Only one gardener complained that she had joined the gardening article list for ‘SENSIBLE’ gardening information not what I had written about.

This is amazing only one person where in the past I would have at least a dozen or more jump up and down if I wrote about something that they did not approve of.

Maybe more people have started to realise that things over the past few years are not what they should be and are starting to question what is happening.

One reader emailed me with the following:

Hello Wally

I read your last newsletter with interest. I have noticed some strange things happening here in Kaeo, Northland where I live.

We get hammered with the trails here and some days our eyes flare up and feel like sandpaper, we can taste the metals in the air.

One strange thing I noticed about a month ago and I wish I had marked it on my calendar the day it happened....we have a huge cicada problem on this property due to a past owner planting multitude gums and Macrocarpa which they love.

The cicadas here in summer are so deafening you can’t even talk to another person outside. They would start on day break and not stop until dusk.

Visitors would complain and I was glad to leave the property at times.

About a month ago they stopped, over night, just like a switch, was so strange. I have noticed some “normal” clouds this last month or so, it’s actually been so long since I’ve seen a normal sky I can’t stop staring up when they do come.

We have also had a mirade of traffic accidents here, people driving into shop windows (Kerikeri), accidents all happening within a short time frame, like they have turned up a switch or something.

Bees are very few here even with hives on the farm next door.

Our white butterfly’s have been in plague numbers, I’ve never had so many aphids and our capsicums and tomatoes this year look like they have some deformity.

Shriveled up stalks and leaves.

We have a glasshouse now and have covered a lot of our gardens with plastic roofs and water from a spring due to the multitude of unknowns falling from the sky.

We make our own compost and have a worm farm but it just doesn’t seem to be enough.

Our chickens are also feeling whatever is going on as the egg numbers are way low on last year and we have young chickens coming thru as well.

The wheat we normally sprout for them is rank and the chickens no longer want to eat it, it’s meant to be GMO free.

It seems people are falling asleep at the wheel with so much happening at the same time we have lost the will to stand up for ourselves and mother earth.

Anyway I thought I would share my experience with our sudden cicada experience. I find your newsletters interesting, thank you for the effort you put in to write them.

Regards Chantelle

This morning (Sunday) a reader emailed me a link to an editorial in a Northland Newspaper which is interesting in the fact that some journalists actually do question and write about what is happening. They are as rare as hen’s teeth.

We need more Main Stream Media to actually do honest reporting so more people will start to realise things are no longer what we would consider Normal. https://www.nzherald.co.nz/northern-advocate/news/opinion-geoengineering-truth-darkens-horizon/ICD7WEAWK4JKT6EOIATR4IDYHA/?mibextid=xfxF2i&fbclid=IwAR3BXXKpF0rJ8oE0KWO3zIswFo8OiDOyLL--kj0OrDirVHC1kzPlbW34-j8

The article raises some important questions and why our Government obviously allows it over our skies and yet denies it is happening?

Dimming the skies increases UV heat and prevents that heat from escaping into the atmosphere so it creates global warming but not having direct sunlight means plant’s growth suffers which is putting the global food chain into jeopardy.

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 22 Ashwood Park offers all the choices and amenities you could ever ask for in one convenient location. STUDIOS AND APARTMENTS Available now from $185,000 118 - 130 Middle Renwick Road, Springlands | ph 03 577 9990 | ashwoodpark.co.nz Independent living in a beautiful environment • Superb outlook - Tastefully refurbished • Ground floor indoor/outdoor flow • Care packages to suit individual needs Available now from $205,000 gardening this week
Exclusive Interview!

Marlborough Multicultural

was held at Pollard Park on Saturday between 11am - 3pm. The festival was yet again, a huge success, with the theme celebrating many cultures, one home.

Photos: Chris Valli and Bruno Cyrillo.

Have an event ? Contact 03 5777 868 ...with The Sun your local paper & & Out Ab O ut Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 23
Festival Mother and daughter team: Liz Anderson and Karyn Delves on the Security Alert stand at the Senior Expo. Mila, a Springer Spaniel enjoys the fun and games at the Stadium. Louis, Jack Russell in his element at the Dogs Day Out. The Red Hat Society was well-represented at the Senior Expo. Geoffrey T Sowman’s Barry Holmwood with the Red Hat Ladies at the Senior Expo. The Barden Party perform Romeo & Juliette by Shakespeare to around 90 people on Saturday at Raetihi Lodge. A Filipino performance takes to the stage. Liz McKay leads the CREATIVE VOICE CHOIR. SIVA 101: Pasifika performers light up the stage at Pollard Park on Saturday.
Advertising Advertise your business & services in Marlborough’s best read newspaper Delivered into over 19,000 Marlborough homes every week. Ask us about our fantastic cost effective packages that really work! simon@blenheimsun.co.nz katrina@blenheimsun.co.nz Sun Blenheim Marlborough The Ph 5777 868 Advertise on the sun’s Trades & services pAge CAll us todAy 577 7868 for detAils PROMOTE YOUR BUSINESS Wednesday March 13, 2024 24 Sun The tree CAre Tree Removal Height Reduction Trimming/Thinning Branch Chipping Hedge Trimming Line Clearance Stump Grinding Mulch Supplies Fully Insured FREE QUOTES Ph. 03 578 0083 (Lance) 021 361912 cts@xtra.co.nz CArpet instAll & serviCe Building Air Conditioning FOR ALL YOUR PAINTING & DECORATING Ph 0800 080096 or 021 264 8235 steve@premierpainting.co.nz MARLBOROUGH’S ONLY DULUX ACCREDITED PAINTING TEAM RESIDENTIAL COMMERCIAL INDUSTRIAL Call now to arrange an obligation-free quote deCorAting Moving / storAge Let us help you get to where you want to be! Phone us on 03 579 5154 www.marlboroughmoving.co.nz Local, National, International Moves and Storage Blenheim’s only locally owned movers! forklift hire SERVICES LIMITED Locally Owned and Operated Phone: 579 2921 21 Redwood St, Blenheim www.forklifthireservices.co.nz Casual or Long Term Rentals Maintenance & Repair Services gArAge doors • Sectional Doors • Roller Doors • Tilt Doors • Commercial Doors • Gate Systems • Garage Door Openers GARAGE DOOR SYSTEMS 41 Grove Road BLENHEIM Ph 578 8251 info@dominatorblenheim.co.nz eleCtriCAl For all your electrical needs We service all Commercial Kitchen & Laundry equipment. Local agent for Starline Dishwashers. Ph: 579 4445 www.cmelectrical.co.nz MonuMentAl Headstones Plaques Restoration Installation Ph 03 578 0088 11 Maxwell Road ar tisanmemorials.co.nz Approved installer pluMBer WHETHER YOU NEED GAS, DRAINAGE OR PLUMBING SERVICES, WE HAVE GOT YOU COVERED. Call Steve today 021 625 378 BLENHEIM TRUSTED PLUMBERS, GASFITTERS AND DRAINLAYERS ConCrete FOR ALL THINGS CONCRETE Complete Site Preparation and Excavation Services RESIDENTIAL & RURAL Concrete Placing Driveways • Form Work Exposed Concrete Concrete Stamping Concrete Cutting Core Drilling 027 334 4720 • 03 577 9238 detAiling ExcEllEncE in AutomoBilE DEtAiling • Professional Exterior & Interior Detailing • Upholstery Shampooing • Buffing & Polishing • Pick up & delivery 30+ Years in the Automotive Industry Ph Aaron 027 256 0808 aaron@carspa.page carspa-detailing.com gAtes GATES Classic Gates ENGINEERING MARLBOROUGH POWDERCOATING See the experts for: Sandblasting Powdercoating Gates, Fencing Furniture Pool Fences 6 Nelson St, Blenheim Ph/Fax 578 0374 a/h 021 838 550 lAwns call 027 275 9100 roblopez30@gmail.com lAwn mAintEnAncE!! landscaping and general House maintenance lawn turf maintenance and installation Annual lawn care weed spraying De-thatching Fertilising • Coring Bringing Turfcare and Hydroseeding turf installation to the top of the south gAsfitting paul.rodger2022 @gmail.com Gas Appliance Installation & Servicing Gas Water Heating General Plumbing Maintenance Blocked Drain Cleaning CCTV Camera Inspections 021 445 489 MeChAniCAl • Cylinder head problems, broken a timing belt? • Blown a head gasket? • Burnt or bent valve? • Vehicle over heating • Motor reconditioning and restoration Bring it into THE HEAD SHOP. All labour and maching done inhouse Vehicles kept indoors Courtesy car available Got Head Problems? PHONE Cole/Jonsey 021 501 994 THE HEAD SHOP Advertise on the sun’s Trades & services pAge CAll us todAy 577 7868 for detAils PROMOTE YOUR BUSINESS CoMputers Ph: (03) 577 9498 17 Kinross Street sales@bpcomputers.co.nz Call us now! For all your home & business IT needs

Relief Teachers

Any registered teachers wanting day relief or anyone with teaching skills willing to apply for a Limited Authority to teach, to become a relief teacher.

If you are interested please contact Campbell Hart on 021313 7131 chart@qcc.school.nz or the school office 03 5736558 for more information.

Relief Bus Drivers

If you have your Class 2 Bus Licence and/ or P Endorsement and would like some casual relief work, please contact Debbie O’Connell doconnell@qcc.school.nz

Technology Technician




This position will suit an organised person who can manage setting up and maintenance of working areas in our technology department. Duties include:

• Monitor supplies and maintain stock levels.

• Maintain and track resources, including end of year stocktake.

• Preparation of material that may be needed prior to a class starting.

• Assist with functions or catering jobs if required.

• Maintenance and cleaning as required.

• First aid as required.

Applications are to be made by submitting a cover letter, CV and completed application form to vacancy@mgc.school.nz . An application form is available by contacting us by email.


Springlands School

We are looking for a new caretaker to join our team. If you have the skills to manage and maintain a large school then we have the role for you. A good skill set of building maintenance and the ability to develop a work plan for yourself is a must. This permanent position is from 8am until 3pm, Monday to Friday.

Pre-employment checks will be needed. Please provide a covering letter and CV to the Principal, Springlands School, 20 Murphys Road Blenheim or principal@springlands.school.nz.

Applications close on the 28th of March.

Renwick Arms Country Club

Casual Bar Person Wanted

Are you or someone you know looking for casual work? Thought about bar work but have never actually done it? We are looking for a casual superstar to help cover weekend shifts and sickness. We are a small country club with 140 members, working here you will get to know your friendly locals. No experience needed as full training will be provided by our friendly team. Pop into the club at 92 High Street, Renwick from 2.30pm daily and ask for Kelly or leave a message on 0275728597

Aotearoa Care Services - Supervised Contact Requiring Supervisors

Aotearoa Care services is a Ministry of Justice provider of supervised contact in the Marlborough/Kaikoura areas. We are pleased to be able to offer our service locally.

We are seeking to appoint supervisors. If you are interested in working to support children and families and are wanting to make a difference in the community, then we are interested to hear from you. Ideally applicants will have a social services background, but this is not essential. Administration experience and an ability to write reports is desirable. Applicants are required to have a clear police record, integrity and good boundaries, training will be provided to the right applicants. There is also the possibility that a candidate with the right aptitude may be offered future advancement within other areas in the business.

The hours can be discussed with the applicant and workload will be dependent on referrals to our service; Possible hours are Monday-Friday (4-12 hours), fortnightly weekend work (3-6 hours some Saturday mornings or Sunday’s dependant on a case-by-case basis request).

To request further information or a job description please email aotearoa.care@outlook.com

Address all applications to: Veronica MayManager/Coordinator, aotearoa.care@outlook.com

Regional Manager Practice

Full Time - National Office

Upper South Region (Nelson & Marlborough)

"Supporting Families – Caring for Children”

The Open Home Foundation is a Christian Community Response and has a vision that every child and young person has the opportunity to grow up in a secure, loving family and receive a depth of care which will bless them throughout their lives.

Do you want to make a real difference for New Zealand’s children?

The Open Home Foundation, a national Child and Family Support Service, is currently seeking a person to support and develop a strong practice focus in our Service Centres and to help develop a range of local partnerships.

Responsibilities include managing Service Centre Practice Managers, providing strong practice leadership and ensuring that practice is continually improved.

The successful applicant will have:

• A Social Work Degree qualification as a minimum

• Social Worker Registration with SWRB (or be registerable)

• Good knowledge of The Oranga Tamariki Act 1989 and its Family Court processes

• Experience with contemporary social work practice approaches (e.g., Signs of Safety, Trauma theory, Attachment, Resilience and Child Development theories)

• A good understanding of contractual requirements

• High levels of motivation and a proven record of solving problems

• Proven leadership skills

• An in-depth understanding of how the role recognises the special relationship between Māori and Tauiwi and strong empathy with the organisation’s special character.

• A full current New Zealand Driver License is essential.

If you would like more information on the role, please contact: cindy.searle@ohf.org.nz Or apply online at https://ohf.bamboohr.com/careers/472?source=aWQ9MTg%3D

Public Notices

Kaikoura LEC AGM

Venue: 3/19 Henry Street, Blenheim

Public Notices 2024 Trustee Elections

7.30pm Thursday 28 March

Guest Speaker: Damien O’Connor Buddy MP




Notice is hereby given that the annual general meeting of shareholders of the above company will be held on Friday, April 19th 2024 commencing at 10am at the Marlborough Saleyards, Main South Road, Blenheim.


1. Constitutional change.

Nominations for the position of Director must be delivered to the registered office of the company, P.O. Box 1057, Blenheim not later than 5pm, April 3rd 2024. Nominations must be signed by a shareholder qualified to attend and vote at the meeting, and a notice in writing signed by the person of his/her willingness to be elected.

A shareholder may appoint a proxy, not necessarily a member of the company, to represent him/her at the annual meeting. Proxies must be delivered to the registered office of the company, not less than 48 hours before the meeting.

Marlborough Saleyards Company Ltd P.O. Box 1057


Voting is now underway for three trustee positions on the board of Marlborough Electric Power Trust.

Retiring Trustees Nicki Stretch and Cathie Bell have been nominated for a further term.

Nominations have also been received from Simon Bishell, Brendon Burns, David William Richard Dew, Belinda Jackson, Brian Nicholas and Philip Taylor.

Voting papers will either be emailed or posted to all eligible consumers named on the consumer roll and identified as connected to Marlborough Lines Ltd network as at 5.00pm on the 22nd January 2024.

Consumers may vote by:

• Voting online (using the unique voter credentials shown in their email or on the voting paper); or

• Posting their completed voting paper to the returning officer using the pre-paid envelope; or

• Hand delivering their completed voting paper to a ballot box at Blenheim Accounting, 66 Seymour St, Blenheim.

To be counted all completed voting papers must be in the hands of the returning officer by 12 noon, Monday 25th March 2024.

If you require to confirm that you are on the consumer roll or require a special vote paper contact the Election Helpline 0800 666 033 or assistance is available at the offices of Blenheim Accounting, 66 Seymour St, Blenheim during their normal office hours of Monday to Thursday 9am to 5pm.

To confirm eligibility for a replacement voting document you will be asked to provide your name, address and your ICP number/(s).

Ensure your vote counts by mailing or emailing your vote paper early or delivering to Blenheim Accounting, 66 Seymour St, Blenheim before 12 noon on the Monday 25th March 2024.

BJ Munro

Returning Officer

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 25 Classifieds Advertising Ph 03 577 7868 Situations Vacant Situations Vacant Situations Vacant
2021 START OF YEAR PROGRAMME Welcome back to new and returning students Wednesday 27 – Thursday 28 January Enrolments to Deanery 10.00am–12.00noon Timetable changes with Deans for Senior Students 9.00am–2.00pm online via: www.sobs.co.nz. This will open on 20 January for bookings. Monday 1 – Tuesday 2 February All Day Mentors Training Thursday 4 February and New Students Pōwhiri 9.00am – 10.00am Parents, whānau and students welcomed to Marlborough Girls’ College. Meet at the front of the hall by the flagpole. 9 students (with device/pen/paper), Manutaki and STARS Mentors in school all day. School buses from this date. 5 February 8.45am–3.15pm students in school. Students to report to Level Assemblies – To Whānau Classes – Hall – New Gym – Old Gym – Old Library levels will have their Whānau Classes posted on the Parent Portal (a link from the MGC Website) in last of January. Monday 8 February Waitangi Day Observed HOLIDAY UNIFORM SHOP HOURS Monday 25 January 12noon–6.00pm Tuesday 26 to Wednesday 27 January 10.00am–2.00pm Thursday 28 January 12.00pm–6.00pm Friday 29 January 10.00am–2.00pm Monday 1 to Friday 5 February 10.00am–2.00pm 17 February Uniform Shop will be open every Monday/Wednesday/Friday 12.00pm–2.15pm until further notice (closed Waitangi Day Observed 8 February).
/ Part time -
hours per
(Term time
Date: as soon as possible
close: 8.00am Wednesday 20 March
SAturdAy 16 March
noon Cashmere Grove. Downsizing, reasonable offers accepted. Everything must go. Sunday 24
FREE TRADE & CRAFT SITES available on application Bernadette Gilmore flaxbourneshow@gmail.com Phone
Blenheim Renwick Picton Phone/Txt
Text your thoughts to: 027 242 5266 txt talk Visit us online at blenheimsun.co.nz
P SHOW Ryan Lawnmowing

Community notices

Lenten Season Hymns

Sunday 24th March from 2pm Nativity Church, 76 Alfred Street. Please join in the singing of a selection of favorite hymns accompanied by our talented Nativity organists. Afternoon tea included. Entry by donation.

Share your community events!

Community Noticeboard is for non-profit organisations!

For $10.00 + GST you can publish up to 25 words.

EXCLUDES: AGMS, sporting notices or special meetings. All notices must be pre-paid. Call into our office at 72 High St.

URGENT services

Urgent Care Centre: Wairau Hospital Grounds. Entry off Hospital Rd, Blenheim, 8am-8pm daily. Phone (03) 520 6377.

Ambulance: Urgent 111. Non urgent 578 0797.

After Hours Chemists: Springlands

Pharmacy: Monday - Friday 8.30am6pm. Saturday 9m - 5pm. Sunday 10am - 4pm.Closed Good Friday. Open Easter

Saturday 30th March 9-5pm. Open Easter Sunday 31st March 10-4pm. Closed Easter Monday.

Community Care Pharmacy: Within the Blenheim Warehouse, open 7 days 9am8pm. Only closed Christmas Day.

Lifeline Marlborough: 0800 543354, 24hr helpline.

Women’s Refuge and Sexual Violence Support Centre Marlborough: Crisis line number phone 0800 refuge or 03 5779939.

Victim Support: 0800 VICTIM (0800 842 846)

Alcoholics Anonymous: 0800 AA WORKS - 0800 229 6757.

Citizens Advice Bureau: Free, friendly, confidential advice. Mon - Fri 9.30am4pm. Phone 578 4272.

Wairau Hospital: Hospital Visiting Hours: Daily 2.30pm - 8pm, children under 12 may visit parents only.

Maternity Ward: 10am-noon, 4pm-7pm.

Children's Ward: Daily 10am-8pm. Visiting at all times is subject to the discretion of the nurse in charge of the ward.


Ambulance: Urgent 111. Non-urgent 579 4870.

Chemist: Picton Healthcare Pharmacy. Ph 573 6420 Mon -Fri 8.30-5.30pm, Sat 9-2pm. Medical Centre Pharmacy, Ph 928 4265, Mon-Fri 8am-5.30pm

Death notices

MacDONaLD, Taane William: Passed away on Wednesday, March 6, 2024, at Wairau Hospital. Aged 86 years. Dearly loved husband of Eileen for 68 years. Cherished father and father-in-law of Garry and Lesley, Dianne and Tom, the late Geoffrey, and Donna, Johnnie and Marie, Deb and Johnny. Adored grandfather and great grandfather. Special thanks to the caring staff of Wairau Hospital. Messages may be sent to the MacDonald Family, 1/9 Newbourne Crescent, Redwoodtown, Blenheim 7201. In lieu of flowers a donation to Hospice Marlborough would be appreciated and may be made to a/c 03-1369-0365207-00 Ref. MacDONALD. A farewell was held at Ukaipo on Monday, March 11 followed by private cremation at the Sowman Crematorium.

T: 03 578 4719

E: sowmans@funerals.co.nz

W: www.sowmans.co.nz

THOMPSON, Richard Gerald (Dick), RNZAF Flight Sergeant: Passed away peacefully with family nearby, on Tuesday March 5, 2024 at Waterlea Lifecare. Aged 75 years. Dearly loved husband of Ariel, loved father of Ricky (deceased), and Kelly. Stepfather of Sharlene, Ken, David, Susan and Colin. A loved grandfather. Messages may be sent to the Thompson Family, c/- P O Box 110, Blenheim 7240. A funeral service for Richard was held at Sowman’s Mayfield Chapel, cnr Hutcheson and Parker Streets, Blenheim on Friday March 8, followed by interment at Fairhall Cemetery.

T: 03 578 4719

E: sowmans@funerals.co.nz

W: www.sowmans.co.nz

YOUNG, Karen Victoria “Cookie”: Passed away on Tuesday March 5, 2024 at Wairau Hospital. Aged 67 years. Loved daughter of Maxwell and Moana, loved sister of Lance, Doug, Eugene and Cody. Loved mother of Jason (deceased). Special thanks to Wairau Hospital HDU unit for their loving care of Karen. Also special thanks to her loving friends Maude, Kay, MJ for caring and being there for Karen in her final moments and their support to her family - much love to them. Messages may be sent to Maude, 12 Clifford Street, Seddon 7210. A service for Karen was held at the Cosy Corner Cafe, Seddon on Saturday March 9.


TENNENT: Wilma Mary (Billie) (nee Kellaway): On February 26, 2024 passed away at Aberleigh Rest home, Blenheim, aged 79 years. A Memorial Service for Billie will be held at the Springlands Chapel, Cloudy Bay Funeral Services, 15 Boyce Street Blenheim on Friday 15 March at 1.30pm. Please visit our website for full notice.

Cloudy Bay Funerals

03 578 2004 F.D.A.N.Z.

a DDIS: Janice Theresa (Jan)

GODSIFF: Ivan Arnold

HILL: Bruce Irwin

TaYLOR: Elaine

Please visit our website www.cloudybayfunerals.co.nz for further information if available.

Cloudy Bay Funerals

03 578 2004 F.D.A.N.Z.


BRIDGM a N, Margaret Elizabeth: Brian, Leanne, Paul, Shona and Julie wish to extend their heartfelt thanks to all who expressed their condolences in many ways. The support shown has been much appreciated. Special thanks are extended to Dr Deidre Ahern, Access, District Nurses, Wairau Hospital, Hospice, and Maxwell Lifecare. A special note of thanks to Sowmans Funerals, particularly Faye Partridge and Bob Barnes, for extending their helping hands in farewelling Mum, and also Stacey Nicholas of Terracedale Florist for her perfect reflection of Mum’s life with the floral selection.

STRET c H: Patricia Ann (Pat, Tricia): Kate and Tom, Sue and Bill, Alan, Greg and Nicki, and families wish to thank everyone who showed such love, care and support at our loss of our dearly loved Mum and Nana. Thank you for the many cards, messages, baking and love. Your support has been a great comfort to us all. Please accept this as a personal thank you from us all.

The Stretch families

T: 03 578 4719

E: sowmans@funerals.co.nz

W: www.sowmans.co.nz


1. Inundate (9)

6. After birth. (9)

11. Rate in music(pl) (5)

12. Grease from wool. (7)

13. Disturb. (5)

14. Make less severe. (8)

17. Hackneyed convention. (10)

18. Pounds,shillings & pence(abbr)(3)

20. Heavy wooden hammer. (4)

22. Sets fire to. (7)

24. Halo round heavenly body. (6)

26. Consumed. (3)

28. Papal letter. (5)

29. Cotton fabric. (7)

32. Accustom. (5)

33. Parson-bird. (3)

34. U.S. Intelligence agency (abbr) (3)

35. Facial twitch. (3)

36. Ingenuous. (5)

37. One who urges wrongdoing. (7)

38. Muslim title. (5)

39. Electric fish. (3)

41. Tributary stream. (6)

42. Embellished. (7)

44. Agitate. (4)

47. The same. (3)

49. Paid motor-car driver (fem) (10)


51. Valet. (8)

55. Of sight. (5)

55. Of sight. (5)

56. Soaked in blood. (7)

56. Soaked in blood. (7)

57. Cooped up. (5)

57. Cooped up. (5)

58. Act of formally withdrawing from the church. (9)

43. Rubbish container. (7)

43. Rubbish container. (7)

44. Snow runner. (3)

44. Snow runner. (3)

58. Act of formally withdrawing from the church. (9)

59. Loathes. (9)

59. Loathes. (9)



1. Most favourable. (7)

1. Most favourable. (7)

2. Ant. (5)

2. Ant. (5)

3. Twists. (6)

3. Twists. (6)

4. Splendour. (5)

4. Splendour. (5)

5. Covering for horse’s head, -sheet. (4)

5. Covering for horse’s head, -sheet. (4)

6. Artist’s paint board. (7)

6. Artist’s paint board. (7)

7. Girls name (6)

7. Girls name (6)

8. Of the nerves. (12)

8. Of the nerves. (12)

9. Sapid. (5)

9. Sapid. (5)

10. Professional writer. (11)

10. Professional writer. (11)

15. Ailing. (3)

15. Ailing. (3)

16. Mine entrance. (4)

16. Mine entrance. (4)

19. Husband-to-be. (6)

19. Husband-to-be. (6)

21. Use. (7)

21. Use. (7)

23. Friendly. (6)

23. Friendly. (6)

25. Rich. (7)

25. Rich. (7)

26. Consequences. (5-7)

26. Consequences. (5-7)

27. Right of access. (6)

28. Well-doers. (11)

27. Right of access. (6)

28. Well-doers. (11)

30. Outfit. (3)

30. Outfit. (3)

31. Cafe. (6)

31. Cafe. (6)

40. Prepare for publication. (4)

40. Prepare for publication. (4)

45. Ornamental screen behind altar (7)

45. Ornamental screen behind altar (7)

46. Star sign. (6)

46. Star sign. (6)

48. Early cavalry soldier. (6)

48. Early cavalry soldier. (6)

50. Garret. (5)

50. Garret. (5)

52. Furnish. (5)

52. Furnish. (5)

53. Dusk, fall. (5)

53. Dusk, fall. (5)

54. Real name Ella Geisman, actress Allyson. (4)

54. Real name Ella Geisman, actress Allyson. (4)


For December 22, 2004

Wednesday March 13, 2024 26 Sun The
Public Notices ANTIQUE BUYERS Gold Jewellery, scrap gold Pocket watches, wrist watches Old bank notes & old coins Military & other medals Sterling silver, Ivory, old pens Paintings & Maori artifacts Clocks, Fun Ho & tin toys Moorcroft, Clarice Cliff etc. ph 0800 00 24 25 Eric Jackson Antique Buyers, PO Box 665, Picton Experience not necessary as full training will be given. Hours as required - 8.30-9.00am start. This includes some weekends and school holidays. Please contact 035779002 or call into Office. ASURE Phoenix Motor Inn, 174 Middle Renwick Road, Springlands, Blenheim CLEANER REQUIRED FOR BUSY MOTEL For your sewing requirements Quality Service Guaranteed Phone 03 578 1010 or 027 578 1010 Clothing Alterations: by Lynette Atkinson-Parker Wanted Health & Beauty Situations Vacant Ba B y gate to fit internal doorway. Phone 02108623223 MoBilE toenail cutting service with foot massage by registered nurse. ph 022-281-6647 to book Solution Last Week 7 March 2024 CROSSWORD By Russell McQuarters SOLUTION For December 22, 2004 ACROSS 1. Inundate (9) 6. After birth. (9) 11. Rate in music(pl) (5) 12. Grease from wool. (7) 13. Disturb. (5) 14. Make less severe. (8) 17. Hackneyed convention. (10) 18. Pounds,shillings & pence(abbr)(3) 20. Heavy wooden hammer. (4) 22. Sets fire to. (7) 24. Halo round heavenly body. (6) 26. Consumed. (3) 28. Papal letter. (5) 29. Cotton fabric. (7) 32. Accustom. (5) 33. Parson-bird. (3) 34. U.S. Intelligence agency (abbr) (3)
Facial twitch. (3) 36. Ingenuous. (5) 37. One who urges wrongdoing. (7) 38. Muslim title. (5) 39. Electric fish. (3)
Tributary stream. (6) 42. Embellished. (7) 44. Agitate. (4)
The same. (3)
Paid motor-car driver (fem) (10)

Game on for mountain bikers

120 riders from around the world convened at Nelson at the weekend for the inaugural NZ MTB Rally.

The week long Enduro event for the majority of racers was their first visit to the Top of the South.

There was no time to ease riders in gently and first up was a 30-minute shuttle from camp down a narrow gravel track deep into The Wairoa Gorge. The deep, rugged valley was hand-built over several years by a trail crew picked-out from amongst the world’s best. The entire site was recently gifted to DOC who in turn handed it over to Nelson MTB Club for operational management.

‘The Gorge’ is home to over 70km of

world class hand-built single track. Trails start at grade 3 and go all the way to grade 6 culminating in 1000m descending on every top to bottom run.

Race Director and experienced MTB Guide Ali Jamieson says anyone thinking 2800m down of descent in a day is no big deal, she suggests riders reserve comment.

“These are 100% hand built tracks and while they are amazingly ‘flowy’ and rewarding if you work hard, they will physically punish you if you don’t,” she says.

In the female category, local champion and eighth best in the world, Rae Morrison took the lead after the first day, with a total racing time of 52min and 58sec, followed closely by the French rider Morgane Jonnie.

Marlborough fisherman dives into latest challenge

You’ll rarely find Private Jacob Radon too far from the water’s edge. His family runs an aquaculture farm in the heart of the Marlborough Sounds, growing blue pearls in paua shells.

As a third-generation abalone diver he’s passionate about the ocean and sustainable fishing and serves on the PAUA3 executive board liaising between industry and central government.

However, it’s on dry land where Private Radon’s taken on his latest challenge with the New Zealand Army Reserve Force, having signed up just over three years ago.

Last weekend, he joined with reservists from around the South Island as he ventured to Waimate to take part in the Eric Batchelor Cup sports tournament, alongside members of 2nd/4th Battalion Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment (2/4 RNZIR).

Private Radon says it was quite symbolic to hold the competition in Waimate, the hometown of the tournament’s namesake and local war hero.

Batchelor received the Distinguished Conduct Medal and Bar for his efforts and bravery in Italy during the Second World War and died in 2010.

“There was a great response from the township who turned out to support us, including the Mayor who officiated the competition finale, the tug of war,” he says.

It’s a far cry from his life growing up in the Sounds where he and his siblings were home-schooled by their mother through Te Kura Correspondence School. The chance to participate in team sports didn’t come up too often.

“It was a bit confusing at first but my team was supportive, and it’s always good to challenge yourself with something new,” Private Radon says.“The weekend was fun with lots of friendly competition from all the teams, including the local teams from Waimate High School, the Rugby Club and Cadet Forces.”

Private Radon remembers listening to his father share stories of people he knew in the armed forces, but he’s the first member of his family to serve.

“You’re part of something bigger and grander, and it will challenge you in ways you’d not expect, but you’ll grow as a person from all of it,” he says. “I knew I wanted to be challenged, and wanted to be able to serve others within the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF), but my family’s business is very important to me. The reserves offered the best way for me to accomplish all those requirements.”

Private Radon says some of his highlights with the Army Reserves have included flying on an NH90 in a joint exercise with the Royal New Zealand Air Force, and being deployed as part of Exercise Bardia in Australia last year.

“I was part of a platoon of Army Reservists who were selected to train with the Australian Reservists, riding in their Bushmaster armoured personnel carriers, conducting clear-

ance patrols for improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and assaulting in urban terrain. It was about a monthlong exercise with nine days in the field, and it was a great learning experience to train alongside our Aussie counterparts.”

Working for the family business, Private Radon says he’s lucky to have a very supportive environment where he’s able to balance time away with his unit with his work on the farm.

“We can be swamped in the summer with tourism, which means at the start of the year I have to pick and choose what I can do. But I prioritise showing up to everything I can.”

But arguably one of his biggest challenges is just linking up with his unit in the first place.

“I’ve adapted to the challenge of taking an hour-long boat ride to the local marina, then driving to Nelson usually takes 90 minutes to two hours. There are a few regular routes for water taxis and mail boats that take me near my home, which I can ride along to Picton to save on fuel costs.

Allan Scott Tournament

One of the biggest three day ladies tournament in the country took place this week with the 24th version of the Allan Scott Family Wines tournament at Fairhall.

Women golfers come from all over the country to participate and although the numbers were slightly down on last year’s at 160, Chairperson Jane-Anderson-Bay says it is well received.

“We have a separate competition on each day with prize giving and a member of the Scott family attending,” she says. As it’s harvest time and very busy we often have a different member of

the family each night.”

Jane says the 18 hole Stableford competition on the Monday, the person with the highest score receives the Allan Scott Trophy.

The competition had three divisions as well as Wednesday when the competition of the day is a gross and net, so it means players of all handicap levels get a chance to win a prize.

“Tuesday they played in pairs and they choose the best score between them on each hole, commonly known as ‘4 Ball Best Ball’. With the dry conditions the ball runs a lot further so we could expect to see some great scores over the three days.”

Sun The Wednesday March 13, 2024 27 sport
72km of exquisitely crafted beech-forested goodness accessed all day long by a fleet of 4x4 shuttles. Marlborough fisherman and Reserve Force soldier Private Jacob Radon (right) competes at the Eric Batchelor Cup sports tournament in Waimate. Women golfers from across the country will be vying for the coveted Allan Scott Trophy at the Marlborough Golf Club at Fairhall. The three day tournament started on Monday. Photo: File image.
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