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24 April 2013 #363

Published fortnightly by CXpress (Pty) Ltd - PO Box 1449, Plettenberg Bay 6600 - 6 Park Lane, Plettenberg Bay - Tel: 044 533 1004 - Fax: 044 533 0852 Email: / Web page: Printed by Group Editors


Photo: Ewald Stander

Knysna says:

Pull in! Knysna Tourism has pledged its full support to this year’s Pink Loerie festival, and last week tourism officials - from left are Nomhle Gcanga, Dorah Manewill, Charmaine Goddard, Janine Arendse, and Maëva Carabelli had great fun when taking to the town’s main street to promote the event. See the report on page 5.

Wilson-Forbes scot-free p3

What brides should know p12

Wheels spin on the Route p16




News & Views

April 24 - 2013

Security tips to shun brazen burglars BAR ALL: No exception should be made when it comes to home security – keep burglar proofing and security gates locked at all times, no matter how hot the weather or cool the breeze


EPORTS of burglaries taking place during the day, when home invaders know people are less vigilant about security, are on the increase countrywide. Brian Elliott, owner of the Trellidor Knysna franchise, offers some tips for local residents to avoid becoming part of the crime statistics. “The first point is to make sure that every door and window in your home is protected so that, even if thieves get past your other security measures such as a driveway gate or burglar alarm, they still have to break through your physical security, as well as a door or window, to get inside. “The noise will alert vigilant neighbours and is therefore a deterrent to would-be house breakers - and if you are at home, the time and effort this takes will give you ample time to call for help,” says Brian. The second point is to be disciplined about using your home security measures. In summer, we like to open doors and windows for a cool breeze. Brian advises that you keep

Bitou, ministers meet to keep Plett safe

your burglar proofing and security gates closed and locked at all times. “And if you have a portable panic alarm, carry it around with you. It’s a simple habit to get into and could be a life-saver.” If you are not sure that your physical security is absolutely reliable, call Trellidor assessment expert Bryn Elliott for a free security evaluation of your home. He will make recommendations to improve the situation, taking into account budgets, the risk profile of the area, and the style of your home. “We have a wide range of barrier options, from top-of-therange Trellidor Rollerstyle roller shutters and Trellidor Clear Guard security screens to Trellidor Retractable trellis-style gates or well-priced but highly effective burglar bars,” says Brian, adding that homeowners often opt for a selection of barrier styles, all tied together by powder-coating them in the same colour. Eqpvcev"ucngu"eqpuwnvcpv"Dt{p" Gnnkqvv"qp"266"5:4"83;7"cpf"ugg" vjg"cfxgtv"qp"rcig"60"

Ward 2 councillor Wayne Craig sent CXPRESS this photo, which was taken after an emergency meeting on April 13, when a provincial government posse drove from Cape Town to address Plett's escalating crime issue. 'It was agreed that we need the courts back in Bitou and that pressure should be applied to kick-start the construction of temporary courts. Bitou Municipality is committed to helping the police and all stakeholders in a combined effort to keep Plett safe for its residents and visitors.' Pictured from left are deputy shadow minister of Justice & Constitutional Development Debbie Schafer, Bitou mayor Memory Booysen, Education minister Donald Grant and Mireille Wenger, assistant to Community Safety minister Dan Plato. (See report on page 3)

News & Views

April 24 - 2013




Knysna estate agent walks free after state fails abused children The justice system has failed the little girl in the pornographic photographs that formed a central part of the recent George child rape case of which Knysna estate agent Adrian Wilson-Forbes was acquitted last week, writes YOLANDÉ STANDER


ELL-KNOWN antiabuse activist and executive director of the Masimanyane Women’s Support Centre Dr Lesley Anne Foster said it did not matter what the circumstances were, a little girl had been a victim of sexual exploitation and abuse. The 29 photographs depicting Wilson-Forbes in precarious positions with a naked eightyear-old girl at Herold’s Bay last year formed a key part in the case which involved 79 charges including child rape, abduction and creation of child pornography. Wilson-Forbes was acquitted of all charges in the Thembalethu Magistrates Court on Friday. The state alleged that WilsonForbes used the services of a young man who brought him young girls for sexual purposes. These sexual acts were allegedly photographed. Wilson-Forbes however testified that the young man, who he met as a young boy years

FREEDOM? Adrian WilsonForbes was relieved as he left court on Friday after being acquitted of all 79 charges including child rape and creating child pornography, but questioned whether he had a future left in Knysna Photo: Yolande Stander

ago, held him at knifepoint and forced him to pose for the photographs which he later used to blackmail him. He said the man wanted R50’000 for the images. Judge Patricia Goliath said on Friday the onus was on the state to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the accused was guilty, but that she had to accept that Wilson-Forbes’ version of what happened - “although improbable” could “reasonably possibly” be true. “What happened to that little girl was a violation of her rights. The justice system failed her. We should always be acting in the best interest of a child. The two men did not and the state did not, in this case,” said Foster. She added that just the fact that the photos had to be shown to others during the case, was already a violation of her rights. Foster said she was concerned about the impact the incident would have on the child. “It will be far-reaching. She needs help.” She vowed to gather all the information about the case and pursue the matter in a private capacity. Wilson-Forbes was however relieved and struggled to keep his emotions at bay after judgment was delivered. “I am so relieved, but now

Plett warned to ‘not let guard down’ as dangerous crimes increase John Harvey


LETT is experiencing an unprecedented crime wave, with serious incidents being reported to police and security companies daily. The Plettenberg Bay Crime Prevention Association (PBCPA) - constituting various local security companies - believes the escalation in serious crimes like home attacks and muggings, as well as armed robberies on beaches, could seriously hurt the town’s reputation should it not be curtailed. So concerning is the situation that a petition calling for Plett’s court to once again become operational after it was closed last year, obtained more than a 1’000 signatures after it was first circulated a fortnight ago. Southern Cape police spokesman Malcolm Pojie also confirmed the high incidences of muggings, beach attacks and house break-ins while the owners are at home.

“Even in the high season we had about four to five cases a day, but it is getting worse every day in the low season,” PBCPA chairman Andries Trahms said. “We had a case where a couple was attacked by a guy with a knife in their home. What is even worse is that the same guy attacked an elderly lady in Main Street three weeks earlier, but he was released.” In another attack on April 2, a man was stabbed on Hobie Beach while walking with his partner, before the suspect fled in their bakkie. This came shortly after a group of foreign tourists were held up and robbed at Poortjies Beach. “We drew up the petition for the court to be opened again because we need these criminals to be arrested, prosecuted and locked up as soon as possible. At the moment all these cases have to be heard in the Knysna court, and the process is taking too long.” Community Police Forum

vice-chairman Otto Olivier also called for the town to place CCTV cameras in as many areas as possible. “We have some that have been donated by sponsors, but the most pressing need is for cameras in Main Street, at the taxi ranks in town and KwaNokuthula, and on the corner at Piesang Valley. Very often these criminals commit offenses and then simply disappear by hopping into a taxi,” he said. Pojie said it was especially concerning that the elderly were being targeted. “These guys are opportunistic and brazen, you just can’t let your guard down. We are also very concerned that they don’t even care whether people are at home when they break in, which presents a very dangerous situation.” Ecnn" vjg" RDERC" qp" 2:4" 473" :356" vq" tgrqtv" uwurkekqwu" rgq/ rng"qt"cevkxkvkgu."cpf"xkukv"yyy0 hcegdqqm0eqo1RDERC"hqt"etkog" wrfcvgu" cpf" c" nkpm" vq" vjg" rgvk/ vkqp"vq"tgkpuvcvg"Rngvv‚u"eqwtv0

I need to start rebuilding my life,” said Wilson-Forbes. He added that he would take it “one step at a time” and consider what the future held for him. “I’m not sure we have a future

left here (in Knysna).” Goliath criticised both Wilson-Forbes and one of the main complainants - the 22-year-old hairdresser he claimed blackmailed him.

She said this young man, who claimed he was raped by Wilson-Forbes when he was 11 years old, was a very weak witness who manipulated police and tried to deceive the court.




News & Views

April 24 - 2013

SANParks and Stormsriver Adventures have their say Herewith the first statements received from SANParks and Stormsriver Adventures after the report of Yolande Stander’s investigation into the looming tender process between these two parties appeared in CXPRESS of April 10 SANParks dismayed at accusations of forced canopy tour closure


OUTH African National Parks (SANParks) released a statement on April 15 to clarify reports on its closure of the treetop canopy tours managed by Stormsriver Adventures in the Tsitsikamma section of Garden

Route National Park. Garden Route regional GM Jill Bunding-Venter said these reports were not only factually misleading, but placed the organisation’s reputation at risk. “SANParks as public institution has to follow National Treasury regulations as far as Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) are concerned. “In an attempt to address project continuity and protect jobs, SANParks has in fact renewed the contract which ended on December 31, 2004, on several occasions and cannot by law continue with the practice. “This was done specifically to ensure that no jobs were lost and seamless product offering continued. “SANParks has done all in its power to accommodate the current service provider as well as its reputation,” she said. Despite ongoing negotiations and legal processes, the

parties are yet unable to reach consensus on a structured way in which a tender process could be undertaken without halting operations. According to the statement, the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) prescribes that, when a PPP term comes to an end, the opportunity should be put out on an open and transparent tender. Management of the indigenous forests is a function assigned to SANParks by then Department of Water Affairs & Forestry, and the permit issued to Stormsriver Adventures has expired. Typically opportunities relating to state assets cannot be given out in perpetuity. “This is the case for all projects, even where the private sector has to invest large amounts of money for example in lodge concessions and restaurants. “The current service provider

will not be excluded from bidding for this opportunity - in fact, they will be encouraged to partake in the bidding process,” said Bunding-Venter. SANParks further stated that due processes would be followed to ensure no job losses, and expressed the hope that current operations would continue to run uninterrupted until a new service provider was appointed, “provided the current operator does not continue to obstruct the process of rolling out the tender”. If the Stormsriver Adventures bid proves unsuccessful, SANParks envisages a seamless handover of the current workforce to the new provider as per Section 197 of the Labour Relations Act. SANParks expressed its appreciation for the valuable contribution made to the local economy by this responsible tourism venture, and its commitment to ensuring that the successful canopy tours product continues into the future. The statement concluded by noting the successful PPP process completed at Storms River rest camp, and efficacious implementation of the timber harvesting concession. Other local opportunities being put out to tender include Tsitsikamma Restaurant (to be concluded by July 24) and Black Water Tubing (as advertised on April 18), as well as canoeing, kayaking and paragliding in the Wilderness Section.

Tsitsikamma Canopy Tour operations to continue


HE following statement was received from Stormsriver Adventures on April 19: Tsitsikamma Canopy Tour operates in a national park and in order to acquire a long-term operating contract, is required by SA law to complete a formal tender process. Following consultation with SANParks, the custodians of the state forest, we are confident this process will not disrupt the normal business operations of the Tsitsikamma Canopy Tour. All future bookings and vouch-

er redemptions will be honoured during this period. Should Stormsriver Adventures not be re-appointed to operate the Canopy Tour, clients may choose between receiving a full refund, or continuing with their Canopy Tour under the new third-party operator, if this option is available. Tsitsikamma Canopy Tour will confirm with all future booked clients as soon as the tender process has been completed and a long-term operating licence has been issued

- contact our office on 042 281 1836 with any queries. Please note that we are credible members of SATSA, TBCSA, FTTSA, PSA and have an impeccable reputation for professional and ethical conduct in all our business dealings over the past decade. We are pleased to announce that we have just received our Level 2 B-BBEE Certificate 2013. We will be well-presented at Indaba in May at stand number ICCC011 - thanks for your ongoing support!

News & Views

April 24 - 2013

Knysna prepares for pink wave John Harvey


HE Knysna Pink Loerie Mardi Gras & Arts Festival has courted its fair share of controversy since the Garden Route town was first “painted pink” in 2000, but after 13 years there can be little doubt that it has successfully weathered the social and cultural storm. The festival, taking place from May 1-5 with this year’s theme ‘Wicked Wonderland’, has managed to bridge the sexual divide with many “straight” people turning up each year to enjoy the festivities, even if only to witness the spectacle. In the past few years the Pink Loerie has attracted more than 30’000 festinos from all over SA, and organisers are hoping to have surpassed that number by the time the festival draws

to a close with the famous and proudly loud street parade. “We are fortunate in many respects this year because Kalula has a R1’400 Johannesburg return air fare special on at the moment, in addition to the fact that Joburg Pride (Africa’s largest gay pride parade) faces an uncertain future,” said Pink Loerie organiser John O’Neil. “For these reasons we are certainly hoping to build on our numbers, and we expect to see a lot of people from all around the country coming down for the event. We are aiming to make the Pink Loerie the biggest thing on the South African gay calendar.” The controversies that have dogged the festival in its 13 years spilt over in 2008, when Knysna preacher Jerome Nel rallied his 200-strong congrega-

Acknowledge our nation!

tion to protest the event, arguing that its participants were going against the teachings of the Bible as they were advocating sexual perversity by engaging in homosexual relations. But according to O’Neil, antigay activism and calls to boycott the Pink Loerie have all but disappeared. “Look, there are two Knysna shop owners who have lodged complaints with us, saying they want nothing to do with us. “That is their right, but we also have the right to boycott their stores. I will however be flying down to meet with them next week to discuss their concerns,” he said. “For the most part everyone has accepted the Pink Loerie as a fun event for the whole town.” Ugg"vjg"cfxgtv"qp"rcig":"hqt" cffkvkqpcn"kphqtocvkqp0

Garden Route drivers might have done a double take last week when spotting six people dressed in authentic Khoisan garb walking in a westerly direction on the N2 highway. The 'Indigenous Liberation Walk' started in Port Elizabeth on April 13 and the group hopes to reach Cape Town by the end of this week to hand a memorandum on the rights of SA's indigenous people to parliament. A statement on their Facebook page explains that the liberation walk takes place against the background of an 'agreed understanding that a lot of our recorded history has been distorted and manipulated for a variety of reasons by people who sought to hide grave crimes committed against the Nama, Khoi-Khoi, Boesman, Korana, and Griqua'. A leaflet distributed during the walk further stated that they would demand the scrapping of affirmative action and black empowerment, while urging powers that be to up the standard of education and health care in the Eastern Cape, and fight the increasing crime rate countrywide. It concludes: 'The KhoiBoesman nation demands that government pay immediate attention to these matters and provide feedback within 30 days.' Call Khoisan SA on 081 316 6646 for more information, or if you want to donate to this cause.







Kom kuier langs die Keurbooms met kykNET


P die oewer van die Keurboomsrivier, in die hart van die pragtige Tuinroete, lê Plettenberg - ‘n Forever oord. Die span van kykNET SleepTV gaan die volgende paar maande al die lieflike Forever oorde besoek en verfilm, en beloof dat dit gaan voel soos familie wat in jou sitkamer saam met jou kuier. Een van die eerste besoeke is aan hierdie Kaapse juweel vanaf 3 tot 5 Mei, en lesers word uitgenooi om teen ‘n sakpas prys saam met die SleepTV

span uit te span vir ‘n heerlike naweek. Vergeet van die winter wat op pad is en alles wat duur word, en kom geniet hierdie spotgoedkoop naweek van lekker kuier en ontspan saam met vriende en familie. Nog daarby is dit die ideale kans om jou buiging op die kassie te maak! Moenie hierdie goue geleentheid misloop nie - hope kampeergenot wag op jou by Forever Plettenberg. Fkg" cfxgtvgpukg" qr" jkgtfkg" dncf"xgtumch"xgtfgtg"kpnkivkpi0

Forever team rakes in awards

Eco-friendly Idol sings for rhinos and his supper - at LM in Plett

IT’S ALIVE: This pic of Dave Estment, left, with Sam and Jason Hartman, right, was taken during a live stream broadcast with Ballz online radio on their visit to the Route in February

HONORARY LOCALS: This pic of Jason Hartman, second from left, and his band was taken at Enrico's in Keurboomstrand during a previous tour to the ‘hood

Photo: Naomi Estment

Photo: Naomi Estment


PLETT BOSS TOPS: Monica van der Linde of Forever Plettenberg receives her General Manager of the Year award from Forever Resorts MD Kobus Tait, left, and Financial & Operational manager Charl Kotze


HE Forever Resorts Group recently held its annual awards evening at the Boardwalk Convention Centre in Port Elizabeth. The group was represented by top management as well as the general managers of the many different Forever Resorts located all over South Africa. CXPRESS is proud to an-

nounce that Forever Resort Plettenberg scooped six awards in different categories, while Forever Plettenberg head honcho Monica van der Linde walked away with the night’s most coveted award when winning the prestigious General Manager of the Year title for her sterling performance during 2012 - congrats!


April 24 - 2013

ASON Hartman, who shot to national fame when winning SA Idols in 2009, rocks up in Plett at the end of the month for two fun events on April 30 and May 1. His Garden Route visit forms part of an epic conservation, community and communications project called Rock n Ride 4 Rhino (RnR4R) - a 10’000km motorcycle adventure on bikes sponsored by Yamaha SA, the route traces the shape of a rhino head on the map of Southern Africa. While in Plett, Jason will be furthering this conservation campaign, cooking and, of course, singing. The rhino-friendly bikers will visit Plett Primary School on April 30, when wildlife experts Damien Mander of the International Anti-Poaching Foundation, and Dave Estment of Wild Imaging Trust will join Jason in

telling the kids about the dismal state of South Africa’s rhinos, and the dangers of poaching to wildlife in general. On that same Tuesday evening, Plett Game Reserve will serve as perfect venue for a silent auction with cheese and wine when Jason, Damien and Dave will team up again to explain how fundraisers like the auction can make a difference to the plight of our rhinos. Tickets cost only R40, which includes a welcome drink, and will give locals the opportunity to bid on and buy great bargains while helping the RnR4R Foundation’s cause. Some proceeds will also benefit Plett Primary as part of the school’s secondterm fundraiser and shuttle busses will run from town for those choosing not to drive. Then, on Worker’s Day, the fun moves to LM in Plett for

two events on this welcome public holiday. On the morning of May 1, bikers from Plettenberg Bay and further afield will congregate in the Main Street where members of the public will be able to buy a ride on the backseat for R50 (which will be donated straight to RnR4R). After a quick word from Bitou mayor Memory Booysen, the bikers and passengers will embark on a Plett round-trip, heading off towards Wittedrift, past New Horizons, KwaNokuthula and Kranshoek before returning to LM in Plett, where Jason and his band will rock the Main Street. In the evening, the grand finale of So You Think You Can Cook on a Cadac takes place between two finalists who will both cook on the Cadac Meridian 3 gas cooker, while Jason

will be cooking on the grand prize for this season’s competition: the Cadac Meridian 4. Jason’s culinary offering will be sold to the highest bidder on the evening, and he promised to sing a song or two for his supper! A delicious buffet dinner will be served, featuring some of LM in Plett’s favourites, and MCs Paul Deans and Bruce Noble will entertain the crowd in anticipation for this season’s winner to be crowned. Call Matuschka Sinclair on 082 774 3942 if you would like to contribute goods to auction, or with enquiries regarding RnR4R (also see www.rnr4r. org), and book your table for the So You Think You Can Cook on a Cadac final at LM in Plett by phoning Sue on 073 845 4141 or Luiz on 044 533 1420. Ugg"vjg"cfxgtv"qp"vjku"rcig"hqt" hwtvjgt"kphqtocvkqp0

Entertainment Diary The Rose hosts the last literary evening at its current location on Crtkn"47, after which the restaurant moves to a new location. The riveting guest speaker is accomplished Knysna author and historian Ian Uys. A masterful story teller, Uys has the innate ability to capture snapshots of history. The evening’s festivities, skilfully conduct by South African food evangelist François Ferreira, will start at 6:30pm and include dinner and wine. Tickets cost R200 per person – contact mimi@gojipr. net or 084 583 3144 to book. Join Plett Arts Association at Bosky Dell Rose Farm for an exhibition and last chance to enjoy the roses in their final flush of colour before the gardens close for winter on Crtkn" 49 from 10am to 5pm. Entrance is free and a percentage of art sales will benefit Plett Cansacare. The Bosky Dell entrance is on the N2 opposite The Heath. Email for more info. On Crtkn" 52 from 1pm, Royal Orange Day will be celebrated at Simola in Knysna, kicking off with a direct transmission of the inauguration of king Willem Alexander on big screens, and followed by a braai buffet and live music by DaveyMac. All Dutch nationals who live on the Route, as well as Belgians and others who feel a bond with Holland, are invited to attend. Tickets cost R195 and can be bought at Sotheby’s branches in Plett, Knysna and Sedgefield. Email oranje.knysna@gmail. com or phone 082 256 7091 for more information. PS: The annual Nederlandse Oranje Markt takes place at Eden Place (old Radermacher’s restaurant) from 9am to 1pm on April 27.


April 24 - 2013


There's light at the end of the real estate tunnel AM Golding Properties too much clutter and furniture mer season in Knysna and Plett P (PGP) will be opening new make rooms seem smaller. Refrom both South African and inpremises in Plett’s busy Milkvisit the walls. Do you need a ternational buyers. wood Centre, bordering Central Beach, and readers are invited to visit and enjoy their relaxed office environment - with ample parking to boot. The PGP Plett team comprises experienced, professional and knowledgeable agents whose passion, energy and optimism define their way of working. Says area principal for Knysna and Plett, Ling Dobson: “Being a leadership brand that operates countrywide, Pam Golding Properties believes that success is about courage, tenacity and humility. To make a difference in the marketplace, we need to be knowledgeable and abreast of all market trends. “Our Knysna office is successfully established and showing excellent sales results. With this ethos and commitment, we will strive to be driven to showing the same success in the Plettenberg Bay market.” She adds that it seems real estate is at last, after six dreary years, starting to climb out of its hole. “There is no doubt that at last we are witness to growing activity in the property market. This is reflected by the increased confidence we have experienced over this past sum-

“We have also experienced sales in the higher-end properties. Knysna and Plett indeed remain chosen destinations for ‘semi-graters’ from the cities, as well as for holiday homes, and many international buyers are looking at these jewels on the Garden Route as their retirement homes,” she says. Latest statistics from ooba - SA’s biggest bond originator - continue to reflect positive year-on-year price growth, up 3.4% in March this year (R903’922) compared to March 2012 (R874’228). However, the average house price is 0.5% down on February 2013. The average house price for first-time buyers was strongly up by 9.6% year-onyear to R690’474, but down 1.2% month-on-month from R698’721 in February. First-time buyers made up almost 52% of ooba’s applicants in March. The average approved bond size increased 8% to R782’986 this March from R725’260 in March 2012. So where does this leave you and your property right now? If you are selling, consider your strategy very carefully.

DYNAMIC: As the Pam Golding area principal for Knysna and Plett, Ling Dobson has valuable information to share

• Are you correctly and competitively priced? You only have ONE chance to present your property to the market, and sitting on the market too long can stigmatise a house. • Make sure your valuation is market related. • Make sure that all repairs are done and the house presents well to potential buyers. • Clean and unclutter! Make sure the rooms present well -

fresh coat of paint, or to take down old pictures? • Is the garden well attended? • Are the kitchen and bathrooms appealing? • Always keep in mind that the buyers in today’s market are aware and do their own research before buying. • Finesse your timing, list competitively and make sure you are not over-exposed with too many agencies. • Make sure the websites exhibit correct information. • The right estate agent will ensure that once the house has been photographed professionally, it is presented to the agent’s internal client base first before being exposed to the world at large. If not sold in the first 10 days, the house is exposed to media at the right level. • Remember that ‘For Sale’ boards are responsible for at least 35-40% of sales. Potential buyers drive around suburbs to ascertain that access to schools and shops are what they are looking for, and very often fall in love with the surrounds and neighbourhood in the process. Ugg" vjg" cfxgtv" qp" rcig" ;" hqt" cffkvkqpcn"kphqtocvkqp."nkuvkpiu." cpf"eqpvcev"fgvcknu0"



The Plettenberg Hotel to undergo a restructure


HE Plettenberg Hotel, part of The Collection by Liz McGrath, is contemplating a major restructure at the end of April due to the ever-increasing seasonality of Plettenberg Bay as destination for high-end leisure travellers. The hotel will potentially close for the winter months and re-open sometime in the future under a new format and vision. “In recent years it has become increasingly evident that luxury tourist travel to Plettenberg Bay is almost non-existent in the winter months, meaning it is no longer economically viable to operate at our level during this period. “This trend is common in Europe, especially in the highend luxury market and similar Relais & Chateaux member hotels in seasonal holiday destinations,” says The Collection by Liz McGrath CEO Tony Romer-Lee. “The decision to possibly close for a portion of the year has not been taken lightly. We

are in consultation with the staff and management and a final outcome will be decided at the end of April. “Our management team will reassess our guest experiences bearing in mind the new emerging markets, and the trends that are changing travel as we know it,” says Romer-Lee. The Plettenberg will use the period of closure as opportunity to do extensive maintenance on the property, including some soft refurbishing and the creation of inter-leading rooms for families which, over the last season, has evolved into an important market for the hotel both in the local and international markets. “We are extremely confident that this way forward will allow us to consolidate and re-open stronger and better equipped to embrace the traveller of tomorrow. In the interim, we will be taking bookings until the end of April and provisional bookings for the summer months,” concludes Romer-Lee.




Social Scene

April 24 - 2013

People, places & events

DANCE MAGIC: These students of Ann du Plessis Dance Studio in Trotter Street, Knysna participated in ‘A Magical Journey’ on Saturday April 13 – at back from left are Cayley Lottering, Rebecca Pretorius, Chelsea Hawley, Luka van Schoor and Mirren Sharp, and in front of them from left are Leah Spencer, Emma Heinen, Kacey Wallace, Lathi-Thaa Guga, Zukhanye Sigwela, Ronitha Nell, Robin Spencer, Brigitta Narbonese, Andrea Collins and Amrita Thagunna.

A LUTA CONTINUA... At the sixth run-off of So You Think You Can Cook on a Cadac, held on April 4 at LM in Plett, Torquil McNicol went head to head with Michael Pead, right – and won! The culinary action was enjoyed by, above from left, Ashley & Wincina Clarke, and Bianca & Taswald Vergotine from Zeekoevlei in the southern suburbs of Cape Town. - Photos: Timothy Twidle

ALL DOWNHILL FROM HERE! Congrats to Nathan and Kim Hill, who tied the knot on March 21. After a wedding ceremony at the beautiful Hunters Country House chapel, the couple and their guests retired to the award-winning Zinzi restaurant to celebrate the auspicious occasion. - Photo: Adri Hurter

BRILLIANT BEACH WARRIORS! Plett’s young lifesavers in training participated in the Nipper Nationals Carnival at Durban’s Addington Beach from April 4-6, competing against 22 clubs from all over SA’s coastline. In fact, the 37 Plett Surf Nippers - just over half the regular team - did such a good job that they scored an amazing overall seventh place, with the U10s coming in third in their age group, U12s eighth, and U14s 13th. Says club secretary Lisa Taylor: ‘We are extremely proud of our kids, who pulled out all the stops to perform to their absolute best. Some of them participated in four events in a row - absolutely exhausting - but they pushed on, finished their events, and got the necessary points for a fantastic finish. Their sportsmanship and attitude to Nippers who beat them was commendable. I saw handshakes, hugs and smiles shared with competitors, instead of the hung heads of many other teams. Well done!’ The commitment of coaches and parents who accompanied the Nippers to KZN was also laudable, as was the support of Plett Surf Club. - Photo: Martin Hurwitz

SPORT WELL SERVED: Athletics SWD elected a new board for 2013-15 on Monday April 15, headed by Moses Gericke and ably assisted by vice-president Shireen Noble - both pictured seated at centre - treasurer David McKinnon and Maryke Sass, seated at right, as secretary. With them in the pic are fellow outgoing board members, at back from left, George Kock (commissioned as Track and Field vice-chair for 2013-15), Amanda Stripp (Race Walking vice-chair) and Joe Arendse (Cross Country chairperson), and Ad Cole seated at left.


April 24 - 2013







Let’s see your pets through YOUR eyes!


April 24 - 2013

Theme no. 9: ANIMAL SMILES... and the winners are: Start shooting NOW for the next theme - see the bottom of this page



Over R20 000 worth of prizes to be won! Sponsored by:

Svenja Gernand from Plett

This theme-based competition is open to all Garden Route residents. Your photographic abilities should not be a stumbling block - we will be looking at your ability to portray the personality of the animal you capture. Follow the Challenge in CXPRESS and on the CXPRESS Garden Route Newspaper Facebook Page. HOW THE CHALLENGE WORKS • The CXPRESS PICTURE YOUR PET CHALLENGE is a theme-based competition with the focus on domesticated animals. There are 10 themes and four categories (dogs, cats, birds, and other domesticated species), and a prize per theme for the winner in each category is announced in every alternate edition of CXPRESS. A grand prize winner in each category will be selected from the 10 theme winners at the end of the Challenge. • A theme (see below) is announced at the onset of each Challenge. The judges select any of these themes at random at the start of each new Challenge, and readers then have two weeks to capture and submit photos that they consider best depict the theme. • Winning entries with the judges’ observations are published in CXPRESS and on the CXPRESS Garden Route Newspaper Facebook Page. THE PRIZES • Dog Category: Theme winners - A Rogz voucher and 3kg Propac veterinary food and toys valued at R400. Grand prize - An Axiss Dog-powered Scooter valued at R3 999. • Cat Category: Theme winners - Hagen Catit Senses toy, cat accessories, and Nutrience veterinary super premium food valued at R350. Grand prize - Cat bed, scratching post, food & treats valued at R650. • Bird Category: Theme winners - Daro pet supplies voucher and Petline voucher to the combined value of R400. Grand prize - Daro bird cage suited to bird size up to the value of R1 000. • Other Domesticated Species: Theme winners - A R250 Pet Pool Warehouse voucher. Grand prize - A R500 Pet Pool Warehouse voucher. • Each winner will also receive an A3 full colour print of their winning photo, courtesy of Kodak Express. HOW TO ENTER • Submit no more than two entries per theme to or post directly on the CXPRESS Garden Route Newspaper Facebook Page – a new EVENT will be created for each theme (please enter your photos on the wall of the EVENT and not on the page wall) - or deliver entries on CD at the CXPRESS office at 6 Park Lane, Plettenberg Bay. • Entries must be in Jpeg (.jpg) format and no larger than 400KB. • Provide your name, location, and contact details. THE RULES • Only Garden Route residents may enter • All photos must be taken by the person whose name is submitted with the entries • Entries will only be accepted in electronic format • Entries that have no relation to the theme whatsoever will not be considered • No late entries will be accepted • For layout purposes, CXPRESS reserves the right to crop photos published in the paper • The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. THE THEMES (which the judges select at random) • Animal smiles • The little ones • Owner/pet look-alike • In relax mode • Feeding time • All eyes • Cuddles with the family • At play • A moment to remember • Funny pics with captions

‘This is our smiling kitten, Bandit,’ says Svenja, who captured this charming image. We love Bandit’s pose and especially the way that serene little grin reaches all the way to its eyes. Lovely!

Christy Strever from Plett


Monty more than just smiles at the camera – it looks as if he’s ready to swallow it! Such a happy dog surely deserves a special treat. Well done, Christy!


Jeannine Stopforth from George

‘Just kidding!’ says Jeannine of this delightful entry, which shows that smiles come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Enjoy lining up those prizes, Jeannine!

Mariska Brink from Knysna

Just when we thought it’s impossible for a bird to smile enters this little chap who, from the right angle, seems permanently happy. Many congratulations, Mariska!

Visit the Events tab on the CXPRESS GARDEN ROUTE NEWSPAPER Facebook Page to view more entries.




April 24 - 2013


Peter’s encounter with the elephant I

N 1986, Peter Davies embarked on a holiday to Kenya after graduating from Louisiana State University. On a hike through the bush, he came across a young bull elephant standing with one leg raised in the air. The elephant seemed distressed, so Peter approached it very carefully. He got down on one knee, inspected the elephant’s foot,

and found a large piece of wood deeply embedded in it. As carefully and as gently as he could, Peter worked the wood out with his knife, after which the elephant gingerly put down its foot. The elephant turned to face the man and with a rather curious look on its face, stared at him for several tense moments. Peter stood frozen, thinking of

nothing but being trampled. Eventually the elephant trumpeted loudly, turned and walked away. Peter never forgot that elephant, or the events of that day. Twenty years later, Peter was walking through the Chicago Zoo with his teenaged son. As they approached the elephant enclosure, one of the creatures turned and walked over to near where the pair was standing. The large bull elephant stared at Peter, lifted its front foot off the ground, and then put it down. The elephant did that several

times, then trumpeted loudly, all the while staring at the man. Remembering the encounter in 1986, Peter could not help wondering if this was the same elephant. He summoned up his courage, climbed over the railing, and made his way into the enclosure. He walked right up to the elephant and stared back in wonder. The elephant trumpeted again, wrapped its trunk around one of Peter’s legs and slammed him against the railing, killing him instantly. So it probably wasn’t the same elephant…

Gatiep en Meraai


ATIEP sit op die eqwej" en kyk ‘n video. Skielik skree hy vir die man op die skerm: “Moenie innie kerk in gattie! Djy moenie da’ in gattie, sê ek vi djou! Djy gat blêr-

rie spyt wies!” Meraai vra uit die kombuis: “Watter oqxkg kyk djy dan nou, Gatiep?” Gatiep antwoord: “Dis onse trouvideo... ”

The hospital bill


man suffered a serious heart attack while shopping in a store. The paramedics rushed him to the nearest hospital where he had emergency open heart bypass surgery. He awakened from the surgery to find himself in the care of nuns at the Catholic Hospital. A nun was seated next to his bed holding a clipboard loaded with several forms and a pen. She asked him how he was going to pay for his treatment. “Do you have a medical aid?” she asked. He replied in a raspy voice:

“No medical aid.” The nun asked: “Do you have money in the bank?” He replied: “No money in the bank.” “Do you have a relative who could help you with the payments?” asked the irritated nun. He replied: “I only have a spinster sister, and she is a nun.” The nun became agitated and announced loudly: “Nuns are not spinsters! Nuns are married to God.” The patient replied: “Perfect. You can send the bill to my brother-in-law.”






April 24 - 2013

Wedding feature


Mungo makes it easy to choose the perfect wedding gift

WITH LOVE FROM MUNGO: The new Mr & Mrs Harding chose a rustic forest theme and used Mungo’s Barras runners to accent their dinner tables, while their guests received Mungo’s iconic cotton and linen tea towels as wedding favours


EETING all requirements for the perfect wedding day is a tough task. You’ll want perfect weather - neither too hot nor too cold but, as Goldilocks would have it, just right. You’ll want the perfect venue featuring sea, sand, forests or mountains. “Fortunately,” says Tessa Holding of Mungo Design, “we know just the place... Plettenberg Bay! “Those who tie the knot right

here in our sunny seaside town are a lucky bunch. And luckier still are those who, with the addition of beautiful locally woven fabrics, locally made eats and locally produced wines, can truly say ‘Plettenberg Bay made our day!’” The planning, however, is not only up to the bride and groom. Wedding guests often want to give the wedding couple the perfect gift as they start off on their new venture together.

Exquisite accessories and Sheena Ridley exhibition at Tsikama Artworx


SIKAMA Artworx in Plettenberg Bay is a one-stop shop for any bride-to-be, and likewise for her guests as a bridal registry is available for their absolute convenience. Tish le Roux, owner of Tsikama Artworx, is proud to stock exclusive ranges such as Ayala Bar - an exquisite collection of designer jewellery - and Alessi Italian-designed accessories for the home. Says Tish: “The Diana Carmichael exclusive designer tableware range is a must-see for brides and their guests, as is our extensive range of unique Maneki designer tableware, jewellery and gifts.” Now this veritable den of delights is gearing up for an art exhibition by Sheena Ridley to complement its beautiful wares. After studying at Michaelis School of Fine Art at the University of Cape Town, Sheena worked as a scenic painter for Capab (now Artscape). She was trained and practised with David Vickers as an antique porcelain restorer. “Sheena works in oils, which are impressionistic in style, and uses mainly the palette knife, concentrating on stances of the

people and the wonderful light effects our weather and country treats us to,” says Tish. These traits are also found in her softly worked chalk pastels, showing figures and farming areas in differing environments. Sheena has mastered movement, a mere suggestion of a line creating a flow or effort of her subject. Twelve years ago Sheena began to work with cement as a sculptural medium, and has become renowned for the large, slightly abstract style shown in her Ferro-cement sculptures, which are often coloured with oxides and finished in various textures. Each sculpture is an original one-off piece, with no moulding process involved. For ten years Sheena had a permanent exhibit of her sculptures in her show garden - one of the Elgin Open Gardens while living in Grabouw. She has also exhibited in the Netherlands (2009) and her works are sought after by local and international collectors. Vukmcoc" Ctvyqtz" ku" pgzv" vq" Rngvv" Qrvkecn" kp" Ockp" Uvtggv" ⁄" ugg"vjg"cfxgtv"qp"vjku"rcig"hqt" eqpvcev" fgvcknu" cpf" hwtvjgt" kp/ hqtocvkqp0

“And kitting out your home is the perfect start,” says Tessa. “Guests want to give something beautiful and unique - something to remember their special day, that they will treasure for years to come and maybe even pass on to their children.” Great news for wedding guests (and for couples!) is that weddings can now be registered with Mungo, allowing soonto-be-weds to choose whatever takes their fancy from a large range of homeware products. These registry choices are then noted in your own special file. “Your guests can either purchase these items online or in our shop,” says Tessa. “This will ensure that you’ll LOVE your gift, while making it really easy for friends and family intent on giving you both the perfect present. Congratulations!” Ugg"vjg"Owpiq"Fgukip"cfxgtv" qp"vjku"rcig"hqt"eqpvcev"fgvcknu" cpf"hwtvjgt"kphqtocvkqp0"

Home & Health

April 24 - 2013

Wake up and smell the roses Gigi Lewis took this spectacular pic and wrote: ‘Some roses for you from the Knysna Rose Show last Friday - can you smell them?’ We scratched and sniffed and... Voila! The successful event, hosted on April 12 & 13 by Knysna Rose Society, saw a whopping amount of 489 entries competing for prizes in various categories. After an intense judging session by experts Alta Nel and Sheenagh Harris, Hugh Collier’s rose was deemed the show’s most beautiful, while best rose prize went to St John's College for the second year running. Knysna Rose Society chairperson Stefanie Seydack won overall with 48 points. Floral felicitations to everyone involved!

Meet the latest of the Reitz clan One-time CXPRESS contributor Melissa Reitz sent the gorgeous photo below of the latest addition to her family with us last week. Mother of twins Charlotte and Anabelle, 5, and better half of big-wave surfing legend Charles Reitz, Missy gave birth to adorable Adam André (pride and joy to his famous vet grandpa of the same name, no doubt) on February 23 at Plett MediClinic. We share the joy of the Reitz family - including grandmothers Isabel and Estelle, and granddad on mom’s side, Jon van den Heever - and wish y’all many years of loving togetherness in the beautiful bay.

Plett’s TB & HIV/Aids Association is in dire need of any donations, and especially bedding, clothing, food and veg, and toiletries to help unemployed sufferers in Bitou. Contact Shaun on 073 513 5119 or to discuss collection, or for more information about this local organisation. Photo: Halszka Covarr







Read CXPRESS online @

April 24 - 2013


On the Soapbox

April 24 - 2013

Letters to the Editor

Email: - Fax: 044 533 0852 - PO Box 1449, Plett 6600

Thanks are due after the attack There are not enough words to express our thanks for all the kindness, help and friendship that we experienced following the attack on ourselves on Wednesday April 10. To mention everyone would be impossible, but we would like to say a big thank you to the following people and organisa-


tions: Smhart Alarms and Plett Security; Bitou Police, detectives and investigators; all the other security companies; Warren and his ambulance staff; doctors Skowno, Brouckaert, Maree and Van Vuuren and the medical staff at Plett MediClinic; St Thomas Methodist Church; Plett Medicine Depot;

Fran for her professional support; minister Donald Grant and his legal team; Bitou mayor Memory Booysen and councillor Wayne Craig; Plett NSRI volunteers and the GAA. We thank our children who arrived in relay to support us Freya, Renee, Carey and Eddy, Mark, Nick and Kim.

All honour and glory go to our Lord who saved our lives and carries us through this traumatic time. Thank you to all those who have signed the petition to say we, the citizens of Bitou, have had enough of the criminals in our area. We live in a beautiful town with beautiful people and may it always stay the same. Igtcnf"("Xkx"Ftg{gt."Rngvv

Welcome back, Lookout! Now please pick up that poo... At last Lookout Beach is back and judging by the number of people enjoying themselves there, it looks sure to regain its former glory. However, this will be spoilt if people do not control their dogs, and result in the rest of us being banned from this beach as well. Last Sunday my wife and I, with our small, well-behaved dog, spent three hours sitting out of the way, watching the comings and goings. What per-

turbed us was the amount of dog owners who arrived at the beach and simply let their dogs run riot, while they walked off in the opposite direction. Many of the dogs rushed up and harassed other dogs on leads, or otherwise controlled by their owners. Quite a few of them used the beach as toilet without their owners taking any notice whatsoever. One well-known Plett surfer just watched as his large dog

deposited a huge pile right at the bottom of the walkway onto the beach. Would he pick it up? NO! He just dug a shallow hole and covered it with sand, ready for someone to step into the mess. What would have happened if he had trodden in it? Not too happy, I would guess. Many people control their dogs and clean up behind them, so why should a handful of people spoil it for everyone else?

We have seen orange PAWS poo bags dispensed at other beaches, so perhaps one of these stands could be erected at the access points to Lookout Beach. But I suppose there will always be those who choose to refuse using them. Humans and dogs are alike in that we all love going to the beach. Let’s try and keep it that way, and not allow Lookout to become forbidden ground, too. Fqi"Qypgt."Rngvv

Brave new era ahead for Plett’s Formosa Primary School What an honour it is so be part of the history and development of Formosa Primary! The 44-year-old school building was originally erected by the Cape Provincial House of Representatives in 1969, according to instructions of the Group Areas Act. After the completion of New Horizons township, the school came into being on July 1, 1969 with a staff of 16 teachers. Both my parents, as well as my grandma, Bertha Dunn, served as teachers to 485 learners. Tuition was given to learners from Grades 1 (Sub A) to 8 (Standard 6), some of whom travelled from as far as Cold Stream in the Tsitsikamma. In 2000, the Cadbury Schools Development Initiative, now known as the Bitou 10 Foundation, set out to help develop the infrastructure of local schools. Formosa was already overpopulated at that time, with only two toilets for its many learners. B10F did much work to upgrade our school, even building wooden seats at our outdoor

MOVING ALONG: The building used by Formosa Primary School since July 1969 will be vacated next week, when classes move gradually into brand new premises

assembly area so that learners no longer had to stand when attending these meetings. In 2002, our school started experiencing a tremendous influx of learners from Bossiesgif, Qolweni and KwaNokuthula, when parents started walking past schools in those suburbs to enrol their children at Formosa. The school now really began to burst its seams. In 2005, it was so densely populated that all of the building’s sewerage pipes were blocked.

Burglaries started increasing and people even carried away the aluminium parts of the roof. In January 2009, former headmaster Lloyd Koeberg could not wait for an answer from the WCED regarding the upgrading or re-building of our school any longer, so he approached then Bitou mayor Lulama Mvimbi for help. The ANC Youth League came on board and together with Denron decided to erect two classrooms as temporary re-

lief. Current Education minister Donald Grant later pledged that his department would rebuild the school premises as top priority in the province. The project was finally approved in 2011 and the turning of the first soil took place in April last year. We await with great anticipation the official handover of keys to the brand new R32.5million school building on April 26. Then, the week thereafter, the classes will be moving into the new building one by one. For the first time, our learners will have their own school hall for assemblies and concerts! I thank everyone who forms part of the colourful history of one of the oldest schools in our town. May God’s blessings rest on the new school building and on its proceedings. May our academic results improve drastically because of a new vision, renewed pride and self-discipline, and the new culture of learning sure to be created within this bright new space. Ngkij"Fwpp."Rngvv



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Sport & Adventure

April 24 - 2013

Petrolheads prepare to convene in paradise... ... now that’s classic!


HE annual charity Garden Route Classic Car Show takes place on Saturday May 4 from 9:30am to 4pm at the

Knysna High School sports fields on Waterfront Drive. The event has become a magnet for local and national

petrolheads, featuring a wide spectrum of classics originating from all over the world and including a display of various famous marques - Porsche, Mercedes Benz, MG, Jaguar, Austin Healey, Morgan, Triumph, Lotus and Aston Martin - as well as golden oldies from the States and elsewhere. Whatever revs your motor, the emphasis is on showcasing interesting cars and paying tribute to these machines while bringing together people who share a similar passion. The Garden Route Motor Club (GRMC) has committed to a vision for its annual car show to become the Pebble Beach of South Africa, and even emulating this famous event. (The Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance auto show has been held since 1950 and focuses on classic cars, each year showcasing a particular marque.) A picturesque resort town on the Californian coast, Pebble Beach also boasts a famous golf course so similarities between these two car show hosts abound. Knysna is of course ideally located in the heart of the Garden Route, offering supreme natural beauty and a myriad of things to see and do. Says GRMC chairman Peter Pretorius: “For the first time this year, we have formed a partnership with the Knysnabased House of Classic and Sports Cars, enabling us to offer a trading platform for classic cars by auction - some proceeds of which will benefit our nominated charities.” This year’s show will feature a special display of great collector’s cars parked in a VIP area, as well as a section depicting the evolution of certain car marques – not to mention the super cars and focus on contributing car clubs. “And,” says Peter, “negotiations for participation

of car collectors are at an advanced stage.” The national motoring magazine Encuuke" cpf" Rgthqtocpeg" Ect" Chtkec will sponsor two Concourse d’Elegance trophies, for which all classic cars entered in the show will automatically qualify. Judging will be simple, based on the car with the greatest appeal, voting being shared between the public and independent judges. The Garden Route Classic Car Show is particularly popular with the motor trade, as it offers an opportunity to display latest models and related products to a captive audience, and is considered an effective shop window especially by companies without local showrooms. To add to the country fair atmosphere, a bar service and variety of quality food stands will ply their trade, as well as a couple of activities to keep kids entertained. Entrance fee is only R20 for adults and R10 for children, with under-10s spoilt

with free entry. “With your support, we look forward to an interesting and enjoyable car show this year,” says Peter. “Remember that our purpose is not solely to provide a fun day for classic car enthusiasts and the general public, but

also to raise money for Knysna Animal Welfare and Hospice, and the E-Pap children’s feeding scheme.” Contact him on 082 321 4724 or at with queries, and see the advert on this page for more information.

GOTTA LOVE THAT MACHINE: The likes of this Bugatti Type 37 of 1927 will be on display at the Garden Route Classic Car Show in Knysna on May 4

Extreme off-roaders kick up dust in George


PINNING wheels, flying stones and powered dust storms featured prominently at George’s Rebel 4x4 Club event on April 6. Held in a rugged quarry inland from Great Brak River, the day-long trial saw drivers in a wide selection of machines tackle rock faces, mud puddles and near vertical ascents and descents. While all the vehicles were four-wheel drive, the variety included standard showroom cars up to purpose-built specialist all-terrain autos. The competition used 10 marked routes through various difficult sections of the quarry to test the drivers’ skills and the abilities of the machines. Scoring for each timed run included avoiding the course marker poles, not allowing the vehicle to roll back to reposition itself, and the fastest run. Among the purpose-built machines in action one stood out as arguably the most sophisticated vehicle of its type in SA. Built

Words & photo: Bob Hopkin DUST BUSTER: A highly modified Land Rover tears up the track trying to avoid hitting a course marker

by Paarl resident Klaus Lutzeler, it featured a space frame chassis, a Nissan 3-litre V6 power unit, four-wheel steering and air suspension. This combination of features meant that it had more than adequate power, light weight,

low centre of gravity, the ability to turn on a sixpence and even crab sideways. Said Klaus: “It certainly is a very capable piece of machinery but sadly for me, the judges penalised me for its sophistication by giving me 150 penalty points before I even started.” Although the courses were demanding, there was little evidence of serious damage to either vehicles or drivers with just one rollover, with no injury, and one mechanical breakdown among the 30-plus entrants. The highlight and finale of the day was the vertical rock face challenge where a sheer cliff face some 20m high had to be climbed before a descent of similar magnitude.

Tight Lines Graeme Pollard

Start mixing!


OOD fishing was had in the Bay over the busy Easter period but, now that things in Plett have slowed down a bit, so has the fishing. Hake made a brief appearance but catches have been poor of late. Reefs have also been on the slow side with very few red romans hooked. Thank goodness for silvers and pangas, as these reliable fish have at least kept the rods bending and fisherman happy. If you mix ingredients like cooler water and winter, you’re bound to produce fish like hake and gurnard so get out there and start mixing... or go hungry. Until next time, cheers and tight lines. Ugg"vjg"Rngvv"Hkujkpi"Ejctvgtu" cfxgtv"qp"vjku"rcig"hqt"fgvcknu0