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ISSUE 182, JUNE 2019

community news, issues, arts, people, events


The Fringe JUNE 2019

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Out of the Blue – a personal experience and a lesson for all...... 4 Our place: New Lynn Tennis Club and Titirangi Beach................. 5 Locals want more tracks............................................................... 6 ‘Terrible stigma’ can equate to living in fear................................ 7 Art and about with Naomi McCleary......................................... 8-9


At the libraries............................................................................ 10 Places to go: Events listing................................................. 12 – 13 Bandstanding: Meet Lucas Kewell.............................................. 14 On stage: news from local theatres............................................ 15 St John gets second health shuttle............................................. 16 Feature: Education................................................................16-17


Sea Cleaners – Raking in the rubbish......................................... 18 High hopes for treated kauri...................................................... 19 Naturally West: geckos and skinks.............................................. 20 Soft plastic recycling bins return; Weather by the moon; Cartoon corner...................................... 21 Live @ the lounge...................................................................... 22 Advertisers’ Directory................................................................. 23


On our cover: Nīkau blossom and berries are among the preferred foods of the kererū (native wood pigeon), a special local resident. Photo by Bevis England.

Back to the 80s – Dance Party Fundraiser

On Saturday August 3, the NorthWest Financial Hub is to present Back to the 80s, a fundraiser for Hospice West Auckland. Building on the success of last year’s event, The Boathouse at The Riverhead is again taking you back in time to the era of big hair, fluoro and spandex. This will be the ultimate 80s night with The BackTracks playing the best 80s covers, guaranteed to keep you footloose on the dance floor. Raid that wardrobe and bring along some friends for an 80s dance-off and support a worthy cause at the same time. Funds raised will support Hospice West Auckland to help ensure that end-of-life services remain free to patients and their families across the West. Tickets are $25 each and will go on sale on June 4. Purchase tickets at iTicket by searching ‘Back to the 80s’. This event is strictly R18. Bar snacks will be provided as part of the ticket cost or contact The Riverhead (09) 412 8902 for prior dinner bookings. Get in quick as tickets sold out fast last year!

Every issue of The Fringe (and the Titirangi Tatler before it) since April 2011 is on-line at Like us on Facebook ( FringeWest) to hear when each issue is available and get other updates. please support our advertisers – they support us 21,000 copies delivered free to letter boxes, post boxes, libraries and selected outlets throughout Titirangi, Glen Eden, Green Bay, New Lynn, Kelston, Konini, Wood Bay, French Bay, South Titirangi, Waima, Woodlands Park, Laingholm, Parau, Cornwallis, Huia and Oratia.

Published by: Fringe Media Ltd, PO Box 60-469, Titirangi, Auckland 0642

Editor: Bevis England 817 8024, 027 494 0700


Features: Moira Kennedy 021 723 153

Writers and contributors: Jade Reidy, David Thiele, Naomi McCleary, Susannah Bridges, Fiona Drummond and Mick Andrew.

Advertising deadline for July 2019: June 14 The Fringe JUNE 2019


our place

Out of the Blue – a personal experience and a lesson for all On Monday April 8 my life changed profoundly. That I am writing this account is, in itself, a miracle. My reason for sharing this most personal experience is that it is not unique and that my survival is inextricably tied to three things: a colleague’s rapid response, a new surgical technique and the simple fact of car-pooling. On that day I went into Central Auckland for a meeting at AUT. I felt well and energised and engaged fully in the meeting, as is my wont. I came out onto Queen Street with a colleague who had car-pooled into town with me. As we stood waiting in brilliant sunshine for the crossing lights, I experienced a slight but perceptible shift in my vision. Imagine a Van Gogh sky, but translucent – the air seemed to swirl and part. As I crossed the road I felt the world close in on me. I started walking towards the wrong car park entrance. My colleague sensed something was wrong. I knew he was talking to me but I could not answer him; I was vaguely aware that I didn’t know where my car was and I couldn’t keep hold of my bag and files. By this stage my friend was supporting me and somehow got me to the car, retrieved my keys and drove West on the motorway. I can recall putting my hand to my face and feeling that only one side was moving. Within half an hour he had me at Waitakere Hospital A&E. So yet another miracle was that I was there within the ‘magic hour’ for treatment. By this stage I was drifting in and out of consciousness, unable to speak or follow commands. I became aware that my family was there, but that made no sense to me. The emergency team administered a clot-busting drug and scanned my brain to establish whether the fully-fledged stroke I was experiencing was caused by a clot or a brain bleed. Apparently 70% to 80% of strokes are caused by a clot breaking away and traveling up to the brain and these are more easily treatable than brain bleeds. Fortunately for me, there was a large clot in my left frontal lobe which explained the right-sided symptoms of paralysis, total confusion and loss of speech.

I was rushed by ambulance to Auckland Hospital where there was a team waiting to perform what is described as a ‘clot retrieval’. At one level the procedure sounds simple; a micro-catheter is inserted into the groin and is fed through the arteries up into the brain where a device grabs the clot and ‘retrieves’ it. But in reality, it takes enormous skill and precision by a team of neurologists and radiologists. If you are interested, Google ‘clot retrieval’ where you will find videos which demonstrate the complexity of the procedure. It is also time-critical and can only be done within four to six hours of the initial stroke. And here is the miracle that I am still coming to terms with. Within a few hours all my stroke symptoms were reversed; my speech was back, facial paralysis gone, confusion gone – and, as far as one can ascertain, intellect and memory intact. Clot retrieval is a relatively new procedure and is being constantly improved and refined. There are simply no words that can possibly express my gratitude for the gift of this treatment. I have been truly blessed. What is left? A degree of psychological and emotional shock and some tiredness – both of which are improving every day; a very intense awareness of the vulnerability that we all share; and an immense appreciation of life and love and the preciousness of whatever time I have left in this crazy world. But here’s the kicker! None of this would have happened if my, now very special, colleague had not recognised that I was having a stroke and raced me to hospital. It is not always totally straightforward; the real-life situation was not quite a case of taking one look and knowing clearly that this was a stroke. Initially I couldn’t speak but was still on my feet and in the heat of the moment he had to make some judgement calls. His decision to drive me towards hospital was a brilliant one. The car was there and we were down in a car park. It saved me. In general, a 111 call for an ambulance would be the appropriate response. If you’re unsure, still call 111. There is no embarrassment in being wrong. Paramount is the need for speedy treatment. There are TV advertisements that promote the ‘FAST’ response to strokes: Face – is it drooping on one side? Arm – is there weakness on one side? Speech – is it mixed up, slurred or lost? Take Action – Call 111 immediately. Watch for these symptoms with extra care – and go to the Stroke Foundation website for more information. And if you are with someone who is having a stroke, first make the emergency call, but keep talking to them. In all the horror of what I was experiencing, I could see the faces of my family and hear their voices. It made a huge difference. My story has one purpose; if reading this means that someone, in the future, gets to hospital in time for life saving treatment, the somewhat exposing sense of sharing my experience will be worthwhile. – Naomi McCleary

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our place

Here’s to the next 100 years ... As they say, ‘good things take time’ and it’s taken New Lynn Tennis Club 100 years from its humble beginnings at the Shaw’s home in Rata Street, New Lynn, in 1919. The club recently celebrated its centenary at its present premises at Mason Park, Fruitvale Road, New Lynn with 140 current and past members, families of those who have Some of the younger players were died and even the astonished that anyone would use wooden rackets for tennis. granddaughter of the Shaw family. Age didn’t stop those who love the game and players ranging from seven years old to those in their 80s and 90s were out on the courts in their Wimbledon Whites using the wooden rackets which are more likely to be known as vintage these days. Although it was all about tennis on the day, it was also a chance to catch up with other members who hadn’t been seen in years, look through the photos of past tournaments and sit and chat over a glass of Pimms and a plate of berries and ice-cream. The day ended with a sit-down dinner, cutting a celebratory cake and raising a toast to the next 100 years. The club is very grateful to the local business and community groups, and its members, who put a lot of time and effort into making the day such a great success.

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The Waitākere Ranges Local Board recently a coastal bird workshop at Titirangi Beach. Over 25 people gathered on a foggy morning to learn about the coastal eco-system and its inhabitants. Among the many species to observe were Black-backed gulls (karoro), Red-billed gulls (tar punga), Pied oystercatchers (tōrea) and a Caspian tern (taranui).

The Fringe JUNE 2019


our place

Locals want more tracks 8-14 Henderson Valley Road Henderson

Now Showing- Live on stage Fabulous Family Fun! The Mad Hatter believes there’s always time for a tea party – but will anyone come? Did Alice deliver the invitations? Can his dear friends the Caterpillar and the March Hare prepare in time? The Mad Hatter finds himself feeling in a funk on the day of his very important Tea Party. This slightly mad and heartwarmingly fun story highlights the importance of friendship, self-love and kindness. Join the Mad Hatter, as he discovers friendship and funk can help him find his happy place. A 45-minute visual and musical delight! The Mad Hatter’s Funk is a high energy interactive experience which will have you dancing in the aisles and giggling al immersed in a visual wonderland. A colourful celebration of how friendship and fun can help you find along your fun-k! Featuring music from international and NZ artists. Best Suited to ages 3+

For show times and to book visit

Locals don’t approve of Council’s plan for access to tracks in the Waitākere Ranges Regional Park (WRRP), a report has found. Released last month, the report analysed feedback from a public consultation exercise earlier this year. The public was invited to submit feedback online or in person on the council’s draft plan which identified the tracks that would be upgraded and reopened or remain closed to stop the spread of kauri dieback. More than 700 pieces of feedback were submitted with half of the respondents disagreeing with the plan, saying that it did not adequately balance recreation opportunities and forest health. Most of these respondents were Waitākere residents who felt the track closures deprived them of their connection with the forest and significantly affected their well-being. A number of submissions, including a 106-signature petition, came from the Spraggs Bush and Anawhata communities. They said in their feedback that access to the Waitākere Ranges was a core reason for living where they do and under the council’s plan there would not be any open tracks in their neighbourhoods. Piha Valley Track, Cutty Grass Track, Odlins Timber Track, Walker Ridge Track and Spraggs Bush Track were the five tracks most commonly mentioned as ones the locals would like to see reopened first. Others expressed a desire for the Hillary Trail and longer loop walks to be given priority. The report found that while many of these residents value kauri, they want more tracks opened faster and community well-being made a priority. Although nine percent of respondents disagreed with the plan because they felt there weren’t enough track closures to guarantee kauri protection the remaining submitters agreed with the plan, with some offering suggestions or ideas for improvements. The majority of tracks in the WRRP were closed on May 1, 2018, after an Auckland Council report found that up to 20% of kauri in the park could be infected with kauri dieback. A controlled area notice (CAN) came into effect and legally restricted anyone entering closed tracks under the Biosecurity Act. Since then the Auckland Council, along with the Department of Conservation, have been upgrading low risk tracks to a prevent kauri dieback spreading through soil movement. Six tracks have been reopened in the year since the park closed. Auckland Council regional parks manager, Rachel Kelleher, said the Council is taking the feedback into consideration. “Kauri dieback protection is a serious and complex biosecurity issue and one that we must do our best to manage,” she said. “While we will never be able to make everyone happy, we are committed to providing a realistic balance between recreation and conservation outcomes.” Both the Zig Zag Track and Slip Track should be reopened in the near future. – Michael Andrew


The Fringe JUNE 2019

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our place

‘Terrible stigma’ can equate to living in fear “Literacy levels are shockingly poor in New understanding interest rates, how to vote in an Zealand and that comes through in the poverty, election, etc. deprivation and unemployment figures we have. “Think about the census and the issues with These kind of things all come with low literacy. people not answering it,” says Jane. “45.3% It’s a significant problem.” of New Zealanders are below level three in Literacy is a basic human right (under Article computer literacy. People aren’t confident about 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights) going on the computer like that, or their literacy and Literacy Waitakere manager, Jane Gilmour, skills aren’t sufficient to understand the questions says more than a million Kiwis have literacy issues and know how to answer them. with 44% of adults below level three in literacy, “Young people are digitally literate but they’re the level needed to succeed in everyday life. In not literate with formal computer skills like Excel, numeracy, the level is 52.3%. “That’s pretty poor,” Word and Powerpoint. They know how to get says Jane. (Literacy is defined as written and around the Internet and games and apps but oral language people use in their everyday life, if somebody wants to change their job, email learning and work.) their children or grandchildren, do banking, book The problem starts when children go to school Jane Gilmour, manager, Literacy Waitakere: a flight or all the other things you want to do – or before that – through no fault of their own. “Talk, sing and read to your babies.” online, it’s a problem. They just can’t do it so they “Sometimes people missed out on schooling as children and don’t may miss out on entitlements, money, all kinds of things,” she says. have the basics to succeed,” Jane says. “Maybe the school system Then there is the “terrible stigma because people grow up believing failed them, there were family problems, they felt they didn’t fit in, they’re dumb, believing they can’t learn and that people don’t respect were unable to handle school or were bullied. them because they can’t read or write. They know they want help but “2,500 Auckland students leave school every year with low literacy. think they’re the only one because nobody talks about it.” It starts in their early years and through into high school. The schools Some live in fear for decades, afraid they’ll be found out. “They might know this but they can only do so much. The kids try hard, the teachers have a form put in front of them and will say they haven’t got their try hard, but perhaps there aren’t the resources of time or people to glasses with them so will take it home to fill it in, and get a friend or help the families to help their kids. And the kids may fall through the family member to fill it in for them. cracks.” “Some people may be dyslexic and have problems with reading. They Based in New Lynn, Literacy Waitakere is an adult literacy provider may start businesses but their partner may be the one who does the helping adults to read, write and do maths better. There is no charge paper work, the numbers and the books so they work around literacy to the learners with funding coming from donations and grants. issues.” Students are all ages (from 16 years) and from all walks of life. Jane says it’s now been proven that talking to babies has a positive “When adults seek literacy help, they’re going back to a time in their effect on adult literacy. “Talking matters. Talk, read and sing to your childhood when learning stopped. We let them spend as much time babies from year 0 to three years, when all that brain development is as they need to get to the level of literacy that is their goal. Some happening. They’re just sponging it up. people are here for years. Some people achieve one goal and then set “Whether it’s parents, care givers, children, aunties or grannies, themselves another one. Everyone has different goals and reasons for just talk and interact with babies even before they understand what wanting to come and for many it’s to improve their job prospects. Not you’re staying. All that language is laying the foundation for language every adult literacy learner wants to go to university,” Jane says. acquisition. There are myriad reasons people pursue literacy. Some want to “That benefits the child before they start school so all through obtain a driver learner licence or apprentices who are good working education and also as adults, they have that foundation.” with their hands might struggle with off-job course work. Others worry For more information phone Literacy Waitakere on 825 0220 about filling in forms – in hospital, for WINZ, for insurance, bank loans, – Moira Kennedy


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The Fringe JUNE 2019


art & about with naomi mccleary

Get With It! This month I will briefly ignore all trying that out, finding the creative the wonderful exhibitions in our arts spark that may have been crushed at institutions created by professional school or by a careless or inadvertent artists who have embraced their art comment. It may not lead to work that form with commitment and courage. will stop the world in its tracks – but That all sits there waiting for the it can create a calm place where the important but more passive response cares of the world (and particularly from you, their audiences – and the online world) fade from our view. it’s vital that we value and support There has been quite a lot in the the contribution artists make to news media recently about ‘safe’ our view of society. I’m constantly levels of exposure to the online world amazed and impressed with the for babies and young children. It’s not curatorial excellence of our two such very new information – but the main art galleries, Te Uru Waitakere currently recommended exposure is Contemporary Gallery (Te Uru) and actually very limited and one knows the Corban Estate Arts Centre (CEAC). without a doubt that vast numbers of In both places you will always find children are on devices way in excess something to inspire, challenge and of that advice. Take the opportunity to find that creative spark. provoke. The impacts are many and varied. I’m equally impressed with the creative hub that is the Upstairs One anecdotal example comes from the Pacific Mamas at the Corban Gallery in Lopdell House, which provides exhibition opportunities for Estate. Some years ago they began to notice that young children in community artists. It is a critical link in the chain for new and emerging their cultural classes were having difficulty using scissors and that the artists. ‘thumb to index finger’ grip needed for holding weaving materials And for sheer authentic community creativity, check out Avondale’s was weakening. The Mamas call it ‘ipad hands’ and it applies to both Whau the People, centred around ‘All Goods’, which is a working space primary and high school students. They talk of 14 year old students supporting artists to make work and run workshops and co-working who can’t tie shoelaces. And there are all the other related issues: lack projects. Note that the Whau Arts Festival will take place over the of empathy, lack of fitness, obesity and so on and so forth. month of June. We don’t talk about safe levels for online exposure for adults – I want to stay with our arts organisations and talk about the more although we are painfully aware of the extremes in content and where active engagement they offer through their public and educational that can take us. But even the addiction to being constantly connected, programmes. It’s that one step further into learning a new skill, from which I suffer to an embarrassing degree, creates an unhealthy

Focussed on the issues: Open Workshops West Aucklanders deserve open and transparent decision-making. We want to see our elected Local Board Member’s discussion and debate brought into the open. We deserve genuine public discussion, not the final passing of pre-prepared ‘Draft Minutes.’ No organisation I know of produces ‘draft meeting minutes’ prior to the meeting taking place, as Auckland Council does. Council’s Democracy Adviser says this practice goes back decades and is one of the tools Auckland Council uses to expedite meetings. But when I discovered that draft meeting minutes are also referred to as ‘the chair’s recommendations’ alarm bells started ringing. How can any local board member draft preliminary decisions to upcoming resolutions when Council’s own Standing Rules dictate that board members must come to every public meeting without predetermination? For Council to stop issues (primarily contentious ones) from being bogged-down in debate at the board table, council staff first ‘workshop’ them with board members in a closed meeting. Board member’s suggestions are compiled into agenda items for the monthly public meeting. Then, prior to the public meeting, staff carry out an ‘agenda run-through’ with the chair-person

(some boards include all the members, other boards only a selected few) and ‘draft minutes’ are prepared which contain predetermined ‘resolution options’ for elected members to vote on. So at a Local Board Public Meeting members are in reality debating the draft minutes not the agenda. Some of you will be well aware of this, but it’s been a revelation to me and despite all the helpful training Council staff fall over themselves to give newly elected members, no one clearly explained this to me. I requested, and have been allowed to attend these agenda runthrough meetings, that I had not known about. When the discussions surrounding public issues are hidden, it is counterproductive to a good outcome and leads to individuals feeling irrelevant within their own communities. Moreover Council’s meetings across Auckland don’t have consistent standards. Some other local boards conduct their weekly workshops in an open manner, why not Waitakere Ranges. Our local board ‘workshops’ and any meeting (no matter where the location) attended by a quorum or more of elected members should be open meetings and not behind closed doors and it’s an objective I will be pursuing. Ken Turner, WestWards Advertisement


The Fringe JUNE 2019

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art & about with naomi mccleary Do the bus stop alertness and vigilance. Cafés, doctors’ waiting rooms, public transport: everyone is on their phone and eye contact is rare indeed. It’s not all bad. I just have to look at my 80 year old sister-in-law’s face as she daily FaceTimes her baby grand-daughter in Mumbai – a relationship that could never have thrived in earlier times. So, where this is heading is thus: we all need to consciously disconnect and put our minds and bodies into creative pursuits, whether that is at the simple end of the creative spectrum – gardening, knitting, Tai Chi, collecting ‘stuff’ or joining a book club, a writing group or a choir. The next level of commitment is to look at what Te Uru, the Corban Estate Arts Centre, the Upstairs Gallery and Whau the People are offering. I’m not going to list the wide range of community projects, classes and workshops that they provide for both adults and young people. A simple visit to their websites will reveal that. Both Te Uru and CEAC have a comprehensive schools programme, which is marvellous, given that our overstretched education system cannot always provide that creative space. Beyond that, they offer opportunities for adults and children to explore their creativity in a supportive and relaxed environment. Don’t waste the chance to scratch the creative impulse.

Entries are now open! Entries for the Portage Ceramic Awards 2019 are now open. The Premier Portage Ceramic Award carries a prize of $15,000. Up to three Merit Awards totalling $3,000 are also on offer, along with a People’s Choice award of $1,000. The Awards Night will be held at Te Uru on Thursday November 21. You can enter online or download an entry form from the Portage Ceramic Awards page at Submissions close on Monday August 12 at 4pm.

Stop Press! June 8: Wananga Raranga at All Goods in Avondale. Join Waipuia Teddy and Roopu for a day of traditional weaving demonstrations and hands on contemporary Maori weaving practices with resident artist Evelyn White. $40 (includes kai). June 15 to July 18: The Whau Arts Festival. Programme out soon ...

Anyone who has ever ventured downstairs from Te Uru’s reception to visit our Learning Centre – Pokapū Akoranga – will know the high priority we place on education programmes, whether it is youth exhibitions, artist talks, family workshops or adult classes. Some of our busiest Learning Centre activities are our muchacclaimed programmes for schools, where children are able to visit the gallery, participate in curriculum-based art programmes and experience the joy and sense of achievement that comes from hands-on creativity. Since we re-opened in November 2014 as Te Uru, more than 5,000 school children per year have participated in our workshops. Some local schools are able to walk here while others come by bus. But we’re mindful that participation in the arts should be available to all our rangatahi and research tells us that the biggest barrier to lower decile schools attending our activities is the cost of bus travel. We’ve found a solution and we’d love you to help. Launching a ‘Book a Bus / Sponsor a School’ fundraising initiative is something we’ve dreamed about for some time, encouraged by the generosity of a singularly passionate patron, who has already helped subsidise several school visits. In April, we’d barely conceived a new scheme to extend this support when the Lopdell Trust, the volunteer-led governing body that manages the Lopdell Precinct, heard about it and immediately voted to contribute, pledging ongoing support for up to six annual bus trips and workshops, lunch included, further enabling children from low decile schools to access the arts at Te Uru. If you would like to contribute in any capacity to this worthwhile initiative, please contact our fundraising coordinator, Emmy on 817 8087 or Ngā mihi nui, Andrew Clifford, Director|Kaitohu

Have your say ... Watercare’s resource consent application for the replacement Huia Water Tratment Plant has been lodged with Auckland Council and should now be open for submissions. Visit and search for ‘Notified resource consent applications’ to read the application and have your say.

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The Fringe JUNE 2019


out & about

At the Libraries


Titirangi Library

Green Bay High School musicians will host a community jam on Thursday June 6 at 5pm and you are invited to bring an instrument, sing along or just come along and enjoy the atmosphere. On Saturday June 22 at 11am Peri Hoskins will discuss his novel East based on his 1994 road journey around Australia. East has become a reader favourite, gathering five-star reviews and being compared to the writing of Jack Kerouac, John Steinbeck and Cormac McCarthy. Auckland Libraries will celebrate Matariki from June 22 and Titirangi Library is running a variety of events for all age groups, including: Thursday June 20, 6-7pm or Tuesday June 25, 12-1pm: Do you want to learn to pronounce te reo with confidence or improve the te reo you already know? Experienced coach Kim Muriwai shares simple pronunciation tips and learning resources. Registrations preferred. Saturday June 29, 11am: Ruatau Perez will discuss traditional Māori philosophies around healing and plant medicines including rongoā, mirimiri and romiromi. Registrations preferred. Thursday July 4, evening: The library will welcome members of the International Dark Sky Association to talk about light pollution and what you can do about it. More details will come in the next Fringe but there will be telescopes! The library will also host a family Matariki disco, craft sessions and rock painting. Collect an event booklet from the library or follow it on Facebook to keep up to date with all the activities. All the regular after-school programs have resumed, all starting at 3.30pm, with ukulele on Monday, LEGO Masters on Wednesday and social gaming with the Minecraft Club on Thursdays.

Glen Eden Library

Saturday June 8, 2-3pm: Glen Eden Poets hosts Titirangi poet Mike Lipschutz who started off writing and reading poetry in the 1960s with the Beat poets in San Francisco, including Allen Ginsberg and Lawrence Ferlinghetti, and has loved writing poems with jazz rhythms and imagery ever since. In addition, there will be a round robin where everyone is encouraged to read a poem of their own or someone else’s. Saturday June 15, 1.30-2.30pm: Book launch for Whispers the Wind. Friends of the Waikumete Cemetery will be in the library to launch this new book commemorating the lives of the many men and women lost in our wars. Many of the people who have walked through the cemetery have been unaware of the vast repository of stories that these graves hold. Saturday June 22, 1.30-3.30pm: Do you often feel overwhelmed, tired and stressed? Irene Joseph a certified instructor of the Silva Method presents an adult meditation workshop. Attendees will learn effective relaxation techniques, as well as experience deep guided meditation. The library’s regular programmes include Toddler Time, every

Thursday at 10.30am; Wriggle and Rhyme, every Friday at 9.30am and 11am, Makerspace, Tuesday May 14 at 3:30pm, and Lego Club, Wednesday May 15 at 3:30 pm The Book Chat group, an opportunity to share what you’ve been reading, meets on June 5 at 10.30am and Stitching Together, a gathering of knitters and other needlecraft enthusiasts meets on June 8, 10am-12pm.

New Lynn Library

New Lynn Library is planning lots of children and adult events for June including the opportunity to catch a classic animated Disney movie every Friday, 3.30-5.30pm. The library’s Embroidery Workshop continues on Saturday June 1, 1-3pm. Spaces are limited for this beginner embroidery workshops and booking are essential. Suitable for ages 14+. Thursday June 6 sees a baby and children’s clothes swap from 10.00-11.30am and everyone is invited to bring in their old baby and children’s clothes to swap. A ‘zine’ workshop is to take place on Thursday June 13 from 3.305pm. Make your own mini-magazine or comic at the first of three zine workshops. Library staff will be sharing ideas, teaching you how to fold a zine, and getting creative. Suitable for ages 14+. On Tuesday June 18, 3.00-5.00pm the library invites you to add to the library mural and a Matariki Rhymetime on Monday June 24, 10.30 -11.00am is an opportunity to enjoy music and dance on the green in front of the New Lynn Community Centre. Tuesday June 11 and June 25, 4-5pm offer the chance to craft and create for an hour and at MakerLab (June 6 and June 20, 4-5pm) you can try your hand at everything from crafts to technology. Gabrielle Blazer was born in Invercargill before moving to Auckland and living in Waima for many years. She formed the Auckland Concert Orchestra in the early 80s and was a brilliant violinist and a prolific composer and arranger. One of her better-known works was her Waitakere Suite for piano and orchestra. Although Gabrielle passed away in 2017, a CD of this suite has now been produced and is available to borrow from the Titirangi Library. It has also been archived at SOUNZ in Wellington.

WE’RE PART OF YOUR COMMUNITY Whether it’s planning a funeral for someone close to you, or preplanning your own service, we are here to offer compassion, guidance and support.

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The Fringe JUNE 2019

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The Fringe JUNE 2019


places to go


Event organisers: Do you have an upcoming event you’d like listed in The Fringe? Send the details, including a contact person and number, to Readers: While we take care to ensure listings are correct, errors may occur. Check with the contact person wherever possible.

june w – June 2, The Homely II, an exhibition by Gavin Hipkins; Te Uru, 420 Titirangi Road. Phone 817 8087. w – June 2, Shifting landscapes, works by Dieneke Jansen, Qiane Matata-Sipu, Jean Stewart and Emily Hartley-Skudder exploring social and political themes; Corban Estate Arts Centre. Phone 838 4455. w – June 2 Attitude towards encountering nature, an insight into Sena Park’s recent residency in Mongolia; Corban Estate Arts Centre. Phone 838 4455. w – August 25, Rooms found only in the home, Marie Shannon’s sensitive, authentic and funny photography and video works exploring objects and evidence of personal interactions; Te Uru, 420 Titirangi Road. w 1 – July 7, Matariki – group exhibition; West Coast Gallery, Piha. Phone 812 8029. www.westcoastgallery. w 2, Live Music featuring Gin & Kronic; Titirangi RSA, 502 South Titirangi Road; 1-4pm; Free. Phone 817 6415. w 2, Pony Rides, Huia Road Horse Club; 436B Huia Road, Laingholm; 3-4pm; $5 per child per ride. Phone 027 499 1732. w 2, Rockin the Rāhui, featuring Swamp Thing and local musicians; Barnett Hall, North Piha; from 6.30pm; Tickets $20 from Email toitoimusic @gmail.

w 5 (and every Wednesday), Five Hundred Club, a

friendly group playing this popular card game; Blockhouse Bay Community Hall, 524 Blockhouse Bay Road; 12.30pm; Free. Phone Noel 627 8306. w 7, West Auckland Men’s Rebus Club, interesting guest speaker and morning tea; Kelston Community Centre, Corner Great North and Awaroa Roads; 9.3011.30am. Phone Roger 834 7945. w 7 – July 21, Re-generation, Jude Robertson investigates the relationship between people and their environment through photographs; Corban Estate Arts Centre. Phone 838 4455. w 7 – July 21, Shall we work together? A call for collaboration curated by Ariane Craig-Smith and Chris McBride for The Kauri Project collective; Corban Estate Arts Centre. Phone 838 4455. w 9, Live Music featuring Dave Doyle; Titirangi RSA, 502 South Titirangi Road; 1-4pm; Free. Phone 817 6415. w 11, West Auckland Historical Society Family History Group meeting; Henderson Central Library West Auckland Research Centre; 10-11.30am. Phone Gary Snow 832 5098, 021 618 434 or email w 11, QUIZ NIGHT; Titirangi RSA, 502 South Titirangi Rd; 7pm. Phone 817 6415. w 13, Waitakere Grey Power Association AGM with guest speaker, Chris Fougere, Orthopaedic Surgeon; Te Atatu South Community Centre, 247 Edmonton Road, Te Atatu South; 12.30pm. Phone 838 5207. w 14, Ladies’ Probus Club; St John’s Hall, Te Atatū South; 9.45am-Noon. Phone Betty 09 832 0484. w 14, ZZ Top tribute Band; Titirangi RSA, 502 South Titirangi Rd; 7pm; $20. Phone 817 6415.

w 15, Lions Club Book Sale; New Lynn Friendship Club

Hall, 3063 Great North Road, New Lynn; 8am-4pm. Phone Mary 027 487 0639. w 16, Live Music featuring Bevis England and Friends; Titirangi RSA, 502 South Titirangi Road; 1-4pm; Free. Phone 817 6415. w 18, SeniorNet West Auckland, speaker, morning tea and chatting about computers; Kelston Community Centre; 10am. Phone June 021 179 3635. w 18, Titirangi U3A with a range of activities including study groups, discussions, speakers and more; West Lynn Garden, 73 Parker Avenue, New Lynn; 1pm; gold coin. Contact 817 5519 or w 19, LIVE AT LOPDELL, a fund-raising music and film night featuring ‘Toby and the Rest’ (see page 14); Lopdell House Theatre; 7.30pm; Tickets $12 ($7 under 14yrs), family ticket $30 from Text bookings to 0210 222 5558. w 19 – 23, Midwinter Christmas Wonderland, themed venue for lunch or dinner; Rifleman Restaurant, Titirangi RSA, 502 South Titirangi Road; group (10+) discounts available. Phone 817 6415. w 20, Waitakere Forest & Bird Talk – Todd Landers from Auckland Council’s Research and Evaluation Unit discusses the first regional seabird monitoring and restoration programme; Kelston Community Centre, corner Awaroa and Great North Roads; 7.30pm; Koha appreciated Phone Liz on 027 476 2732 or email w 21, Flicks presents The Ideal Palace (PG), billed as a beautiful, romantic work that looks like a master painting; Lopdell House Theatre; 10.30am, 2pm, 6pm and 8.15pm; Tickets from and on door. Text bookings to 0210 222 5558.

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places to go w 23, Live Music featuring Pete Leenen; Titirangi RSA,

l WHERE IT’S AT: • Corban Estate Arts Centre, 2 Mount Lebanon Lane, Henderson; 10am–4.30pm daily. 838 4455. • EcoMatters Environment Trust, 1 Olympic Place, New Lynn; Wednesday – Sunday 10am-2pm. 826 4276, info@ecomatters. • Flicks cinema, Lopdell House Theatre. 818 2489, • Kelston Community Centre, corner of Awaroa and Great North Roads, Kelston. • McCahon House Museum, 67 Otitori Bay Rd; Wednesday – Sunday, 1-4pm, except public holidays. 817 6148, mccahon@ • Playhouse Theatre, 15 Glendale Road, Glen Eden. 818 5751. • Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery, 420 Titirangi Road, Titirangi; 10am–4.30pm daily. 817 8087, info@ • Titirangi Theatre, Lopdell House Theatre; Titirangi. 817 5812, infoline 817 5951, • Upstairs Gallery, Level 1, Lopdell House; 10am–4.30pm daily. 817 4278, www. • West Coast Gallery, Seaview Road, Piha; Wednesday – Sunday, 10am–4pm. 812 8029,

7pm. Phone 817 6415. w 26, West Auckland Historical Society Members’ Night: an evening of short talks presented by members – offerings welcome; Waitakere Gardens, Henderson; 7pm; Contact Vivien Burgess 833 4692 or email vivienb@ w 28, The Combined Probus Club of Glen Eden, fellowship, speakers, monthly trips; Ceramco Park Function Centre, Glendale Road, Kaurilands; 10-11.30am. Phone Brian Holt 838 5857. w 28, Titirangi Folk Music Club presents John Egenes and Donna Dean; Titirangi Beach Hall; 8pm; $7 members, $10 non-members. Phone Tricia on 818 5659. w 28, OPEN MIC NIGHT; Titirangi RSA, 502 South Titirangi Road; 8.30pm. Phone 817 6415. w 30, Titirangi Village Market: art, craft, produce and music; Titirangi War Memorial Hall; 10am-2pm. Contact Tess on or phone 022 631 9436. w 30, Live Music featuring James Fromont; Titirangi RSA, 502 South Titirangi Road; 1-4pm; Free. Phone 817 6415 or @RnRMusicCountryBlues, There is so much happening in and around our community, including many weekly events, that we can’t fit everything into these listings. To find out more about whatever you are interested in, from Air Scouts to yoga and almost everything in between, visit:


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w 25, QUIZ NIGHT; Titirangi RSA, 502 South Titirangi Rd;

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bandstanding: music in the west with susannah bridges

‘... once I get playing I forget the audience ...’


You might have seen young pianist I put it on the piano where the sheet Lucas Kewell around and about in music normally goes and pressed play our neck of the woods. He’s provided and record. As I watched it I played the musical backdrop for local gallery the music, I just made it up as the film openings and performed at the went along. The first take was good Titirangi Market and Titirangi Festival but we did two more versions It was a of Music. And now he is fundraising very simple theme but they liked it. The to get to Australia to compete at an film was shown at Flicks in Titirangi and international music festival. you can see it online.” (https://vimeo. Now in year 11 at Avondale College, com/276972207, password: orpheus.) 15-year-old Lucas began playing Lucas has also played at Café piano in year 5. “I only play piano and One2One on Ponsonby Road, as well as keyboard now, but I was in the Pacific some private performances, of which Island drumming group when I was at he says he’s happy to do more. He Oratia Primary, which I think helped my Toby and the Rest are, rear, Lucas Kewell (piano/keyboard) with, plans to continue to study music and sense of rhythm. I started off playing left to right, Maxwell Barrett (drums), Toby Barrett (saxophone) go to University. classical, but now I play jazz. Most of it and Tyler Diprose (double bass). “I would love to be able to make is improvised and all my own ideas, and a lot of it sounds quite Spanish. music my career and produce music for films. I was lucky a few weeks I can read music but at the moment I don’t write it down, I memorise it. ago to get invited to the studios at Native Audio where I spent some This year I will be concentrating on writing my compositions and then time playing and recording with guitarist Arli Liberman, who is working recording some of the pieces I have come up with. on a score for a New Zealand movie to be released later this year. The “We are setting up a small studio in the basement of the house so studios are so amazing and many big movie sound tracks have been I can record my music. I will be using both Garage Band and Sibelius produced there. And I’ve been invited back there sometime!” music programmes so I can add other instruments to the pieces I Lucas has also recently formed a jazz quartet, Toby and the Rest, with compose. I have about four pieces that I would like to get written down three friends. They were awarded third place at the Avondale College and work out parts for other instruments.” Talent Quest finals just a few weeks ago. The quartet are Maxwell Like many performers Lucas suffers from stage fright, “but once I (drums) and Toby (saxophone) Barrett, Tyler Diprose (double bass) and get playing I forget the audience and get lost in my music, Dad [Robin Lucas on piano. Kewell] often has to tell me to find an end! I play most days for two In July, Lucas (accompanied by Tyler) will be off to the Aspire Youth to three hours as well as every day at college. I’m really exploring my Music Festival on the Gold Coast. The event is open to secondary music and playing as much as possible.” school students from all over the world and involves a competition, Robin says, “He is extremely talented. Recently, at the 42nd New masterclasses, workshops and playing a public performance. Zealand Youth Jazz Competition in Tauranga, Lucas played in Avondale To raise funds for this trip Toby and the Rest will play a fundraising College’s jazz combo and in the Big Band, and they took the Silver concert at Lopdell Theatre on June 19 at 7pm. Titirangi resident and Award. 350 students from 21 secondary schools took part.” international saxophone player Hanna Wiskari-Griffiths, will also be Although he doesn’t have too much time to listen to lots of other playing. Robin, who runs Flicks, will be showing some short films and music, Lucas says he’s inspired by musicians like Joe Zawinul and Chic challenging Lucas and Hanna to play along with the images, just like the Corea “but I feel the music I play comes from inside me, I am not sure old days of silent movies. “It’s going to be a great night of music and how or why, it just happens. visuals,” says Robin. “Last year two local film makers (Martin Sercombe and Britta Help Lucas and Tyler get to Australia by treating yourself to a great Pollmuller) needed music for an animated film they had made about performance by some talented locals. For more info check here https:// the wreck of the Orpheus. They gave me the edited film on an iPad and Harcourts Blue Fern Realty Ltd, Licensed Agent REAA 2008

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on stage

The cast of The Pink Hammer, left to right: Alison Foster, Pania Williamson, Karlos Wrennell, Vicki Cottingham and Karen Soulje.

– Phoebe Falconer

We have to take a precautionary approach I have had a number of heartfelt communications from residents about the closure of some local tracks, particularly the Bill Haresnape track and the Mahoe track. The decision to close the tracks was not an easy one and the board agonised over it. There was a rigorous process where a number of tracks were reviewed and measured for their use, proximity to Kauri and recreational characteristics. Those with Kauri dieback present have been closed so that the spread of the disease can be quarantined and those with uninfected Kauri closed so that the Kauri can be protected. Regrettably Titirangi is significantly affected by Kauri dieback. It is established around the War Memorial Hall, in French Bay and in Paturoa and around Park Road. I live locally and I know how important the tracks are, particularly Mahoe and Bill Haresnape. They not only provide scenic beauty and exercise opportunities but they also provide important pedestrian routes. The starting point for the board is that we are in a crisis situation with Kauri dieback. The way things are going unless we take drastic action we could lose all kauri over a period of time. I accept that the pathogen is water borne, is spread by a number of means, and we may not be able to stop its spread but I do believe that we have to take a precautionary approach. It is also clear to me that there is a clear link between human

activity, particularly walking, and the spread of the disease. The last Council report on the incidence of Kauri dieback showed a very clear correlation between the disease and proximity to tracks. The closure is part quarantine and part protective of the remaining healthy Kauri on the tracks. These are not permanent closures. As soon as the necessary work upgrading the tracks to a compliant standard has been completed they will be reopened. I have asked the officers to prepare a timeline and list of priorities and will insist that the work is progressed as quickly as possible. I have suggested to staff that the Bill Haresnape and Mahoe tracks ought to be given high priority because of their important pedestrian function. Okewa Reserve has also been the subject of comment and I have also asked staff to consider what needs to be done for this area. The good news is that the Zig Zag track is due to be reopened soon. And the Environmental targeted rate will provide the resources necessary to continue with track reopenings. Greg Presland, Chairperson Waitakere Ranges Local Board


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The next production at Titirangi Theatre will be The Pink Hammer, written by the late New Zealand playwright Michele Amas. Four women decide that their woodworking skills need updating, so they enrol in a women-only class, to be taught by a woman. On their first night, the instructor does not show up and a grumpy man agrees reluctantly to take the classes but is loath to let the learners touch his tools. Tempers become frayed and it’s not long before the wood chips fly. The play is being directed by Patricia Wichman, known to local audiences for her roles in The Bellbird and Kings of the Gym. Patricia is a professional actress and director, and her production of The Pink Hammer won an award at the Howick Little Theatre. The cast includes well-known Karen Soulje, last seen in A Bunch of Amateurs. It is a delight to welcome back Karlos Wrennell, who last appeared in Messiah on the Frigidaire, and our own Vicki Cottingham, who has not graced the boards since The Women, nearly 10 years ago. It’s also nice to see Pania Williamson back on stage, after Messiah. And we welcome Alison Foster to her first production in Titirangi and indeed in New Zealand! The Pink Hammer opens at Titirangi Theatre on Tuesday, June 4 and runs until Saturday, June 15. Bookings can be made at Titirangi Pharmacy or online at Our third play this year will be Treats by Christopher Hampton, to be directed by Liz Watkinson. The play is set in one-room of a flat in still-swinging ’70s London, where two men, one sweet-natured and the other an unscrupulous cad, battle to hold on to the affections of an indecisive woman. Witty dialogue and unsuspected twists look to make this play a sure winner. A read-through evening, which also provides an opportunity to meet Liz, will be held in the theatre on Monday, June 10 at 7.30pm, with refreshments provided. Auditions will be held in the theatre at 2pm on Sunday, June 16. The season is August 20-31. And don’t forget to keep an eye on our website for upcoming events, stories and pictures.

our place

feature: education

St John volunteer shuttle drivers are pictured with team leader, Lindsay Roberts (far right) following the dedication service for the St John West Auckland Area Committee’s second health shuttle. St John West Auckland has operated a free health shuttle service since 2006, transporting patients (including wheelchair patients) to and from pre-arranged appointments at Waitakere Hospital as well as medical centres, physiotherapy and radiology clinics, dental and specialist appointments. “This new vehicle will be based at the New Lynn Ambulance Station,” says Lindsay. “This will enable improved coverage of our existing area, as well as extending door-to-door coverage to Waima, Woodlands Park, and Laingholm.” The purchase and fit-out of the new vehicle was made possible by significant funding from The Trusts 2017 Million Dollar Mission, with additional support from Ray White (Austar Realty) and the Delaney Family Trust. “Although run as a free community service, donations are appreciated to help cover operating costs. The service runs throughout the year, and patients can feel reassured knowing all volunteer drivers are first aid trained, driver competency assessed by St John, and Police screened,” adds Lindsay. For health shuttle bookings phone St John on 0800 925 2672 and ask for ‘West Auckland Health Shuttle bookings’.

Auckland International College (AIC) offers students an academically-focused senior high school education. Established in 2003, AIC chose the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) as the College’s sole curriculum. The IBDP is being increasingly taken up internationally and in New Zealand, but AIC is the only school in New Zealand to teach this curriculum exclusively. The IB Diploma is one of the most sought after educational qualifications and is recognised by the very best universities in the world. AIC’s specific focus is to prepare students for the world’s top universities. The school runs a comprehensive university counselling programme and students are encouraged to research universities they wish to apply to all over the world. Local and international students will leave with a range of offers from top UK, USA and Canadian universities. The AIC school year begins in July so that students can be aligned with northern hemisphere university intakes. (Students can and do attend local universities as well.) As a small school, AIC prides itself on having a family atmosphere. Rules around attendance and uniform are strict, but relationships between teachers and students are warm. With a highly motivated student body, teachers can devote themselves to teaching. To find out more about AIC admissions, please call to arrange a visit. Email or call 09 309 4480.

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The primary focus of AIC is academic excellence. A mix of local and international students creates a rich and diverse atmosphere. Supported by outstanding academic staff, year after year our students deservedly achieve top marks in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. Every day is an open day at AIC. If you are interested in joining the new school year, beginning in July, or even if you just want to look around, you’re welcome! Please phone or email to make an appointment.



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feature: education

Academic success for Avondale College students Avondale College continues to celebrate record rates of academic success, with students having achieved excellent results in their NCEA, Cambridge International and New Zealand Scholarship examinations for 2018. Nearly 20% of Avondale College’s senior students sat the internationally recognised Cambridge Assessment International Examinations, with high success. In 2018 achievement rates rose to a 100% pass rate for Year 11 IGCSE students. The University Entrance pass rate of Avondale’s Cambridge students also increased, to 91%. One Year 13 Avondale College student, Jesslyn Chen, came first Avondale College’s reputation for academic success is supplemented by the recognition it has gained for its ICT and music education. in New Zealand in her AS History examination in 2018. This was Jesslyn’s second Outstanding Learner Award – she had also come The New Zealand Scholarship examination is widely regarded first in AS Psychology the previous year. as the most prestigious secondary qualification in New Zealand, Avondale’s NCEA results were once again well above national and 27 scholarships were awarded to Avondale College students, achievement rates, with a 94% pass rate at Level 1, 93% at Level across 13 different subject areas. These included two Outstanding 2 and 91% at Level 3. University Entrance achievement rates for Scholarships. Avondale’s NCEA students were also well above the national Congratulations to all students and their teachers. We look averages: 71% compared to the national pass rate of 60%. forward to celebrating more success as 2019 unfolds!


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Sea Cleaners – Raking in the rubbish Captain Hayden Smith (left) credits both his mother and his wife for his day job as a champion for clean harbours and coastlines. After an idyllic childhood growing up in Waima and in and around Little Muddy Creek, he was a reluctant student cooped up in a classroom. His mother Donna, frustrated at his disinterest in study, warned him that he would end up a rubbish man, a prophecy that would prove highly accurate in time. After school Hayden entered the family transport business, learning all aspects of running a company, but after a while he was looking for a new challenge. His wife Amy advised him to think back to when he was a child and what he did for fun.


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Hayden knew his happy place was in the outdoors so he turned to adventure tourism and landed a job with Fergs Kayaks on Tamaki Drive, taking kayak tours to Rangitoto. When one of these trips was cancelled he went for a paddle under the harbour bridge and was horrified by the quantity of rubbish that had accumulated via the various waterways. “The ferry managers used to call it the Waiheke raft, where plastic waste had clumped together and almost formed an island. I couldn’t understand why nobody was out there cleaning it up so that was all the invitation I needed to get started,” says Hayden. An approach to Sir Bob Harvey, then mayor of Waitakere City, and a retired vessel donated by Ports of Auckland and the Sea Cleaners Trust was born. Hayden began working with a team of volunteers hauling rubbish out of the Manukau and Waitemata harbours and now has four boats working full-time. On average the crew on each boat collects around six cubic metres of rubbish a day, equating to about 90 wheelbarrow loads. Hayden estimates that since 2002 Sea Cleaners has taken seven million litres of rubbish out of the waterways. Sea Cleaners boats cover from Northland to Waikato. Four deck hands are employed with each boat and the rest of the crew are volunteers ranging from one to five on a daily basis. In the 17 years since the first boat there has been some improvement in the rubbish problem, particularly in the Waitemata Harbour where the Royal New Zealand Navy has utilised its sailor humanitarian aid training programme to work alongside Sea Cleaners. Hayden believes that cleaning up estuaries and coastlines is about creating harbours for the future. “Our goal has been to clean up Auckland’s waterways, but also provide a public information and education programme that will hopefully prevent future generations from littering and dumping rubbish,” he says. He aims to have 10 boats operating soon, one in every major centre around New Zealand. Sea Cleaners has launched a youth ambassadors’ programme and in 2018, assisted by the Hawaiian Tourism Authority, Hayden took eight of these young ambassadors to Hawaii to help spread the Sea Cleaners environmental message to schools. This year Sea Cleaners, in collaboration with Hawaiian Airlines and Auckland’s Watercare Harbour Cleanup Trust organised a bicultural clean up effort on Rangitoto Island when Hawaiian youth leaders joined their local iwi youth counterparts to collect litter and highlight the global issue of marine plastics. In 2017 Hayden Smith was named Kiwibank New Zealand Local Hero of the Year. “There are over four million people in New Zealand. If we can get everyone to just pick up one piece of rubbish a day, that will make a huge difference,” he says. Hayden has proven that being a rubbish man is a most worthy pursuit. He is a local hero who identified an environmental issue, tackled it and inspired others to follow his lead. To find out about volunteering, to donate to this non-profit organisation or to find out when Sea Cleaners is next doing a clean-up in our area visit – Fiona Drummond

Volunteer Martin Turberville-Smith bringing in another load of rubbish removed from Auckland’s waterways.


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our place

High hopes for treated kauri Efforts to protect Awhi Awhi, the iconic kauri on Paturoa Road might have faltered with the lifting of its protection order last month, but hopes remain high for many other kauri thanks to the efforts of Kauri Rescue. Comprising of scientists, iwi and community groups, Kauri Rescue has been helping local residents treat trees infected with kauri dieback for the past 18 months, using a chemical called phosphite which has been shown to be effective at stopping the disease killing trees. Spokesperson Mels Barton said many treated trees are showing significantly less bleed, a common symptom of kauri dieback. “We are seeing bleeds that had been active start to dry up and become non active and in some cases disappear altogether. But it’s really early days. It’ll probably take four years or so before we see changes in the canopy.” Kauri Rescue helps local residents identify infected kauri on their properties and then provides them with the kits and training to inject phosphite into the trees and monitor the results. Canopy thinning, gum bleeding, peeling bark and moss cover are assessed periodically and the data is sent back to Kauri Rescue. While the phosphite treatment doesn’t cure Tamsyn Downes treating one of her kauri of dieback, trials have shown that it halts the disease kauri with phosphite. Image: Kauri that would otherwise starve the tree to death. Rescue Project. Laingholm resident Tamsyn Downes began using the treatment over a year ago after she discovered kauri dieback had infected over 100 trees on her property. Six months after the initial treatment, she hosted a workshop with a group of volunteers who helped her reassess all her trees. The data was sent to Kauri Rescue which collated it with data from other residents and presented it at a community “show and tell” late last year. While it didn’t differentiate by property, the data revealed that a significant portion of the 800 trees treated showed a reduction in symptoms. “The overall statics were that in that first six months of the trees being treated, there had been significant decline in the symptoms of kauri dieback,” Tamsyn said. “Everyone was pretty delighted and came away feeling really good about it.” She can see for herself that many of her trees look healthier, while many untreated ones on surrounding properties have deteriorated. “The trees on either side of my property are dead. I’ve seen none of mine get worse, but also some of them have definitely improved,” she said. However, she is realistic about the possibility that that might change. “We all knew right at the beginning that phosphite was not a cure. Respite & Day Care, Specialist Hospital Dementia It was billed to halt the disease until either a cure is found or the Care and Young Persons Disability Care symptoms start coming back.” Kauri Rescue’s initial plan was to reassess the trees every six months, We believe that inclusiveness, enjoyment and fun, but that has been extended to a year to allow more change to occur. contribute to a resident’s holistic well-being. If infected trees start to deteriorate in that time they may be injected with phosphite again. Phone: Resina Rakai on (09) 828 3741 / 021 835 743 “I just want to make sure they all survive. This is the only thing I’ve heard about that has actually shown results,” Tamsyn said. “The people 24 Coronet Place, Avondale FRINGEADLTD.pdf 1 15/11/16 16:33 at Kauri Rescue know so much. If anyone is going to save the trees it’s these clever people.” – Michael Andrew

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Tamsyn Downes and her daughter beside one of their kauri. Image: Kauri Rescue Project.

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Presland and Co provide a variety of legal services including conveyancing, family law, criminal law, wills & estates.

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naturally west with fiona drummond

Geckos and Skinks – our inconspicuous lizards If you live around the bush they’ll be there, but you’d have to be lucky to come across one of our local geckos or skinks. They’re elusive little creatures, having evolved to be cleverly camouflaged to their surroundings. Geckos tend to be more invisible than skinks as the latter tend to live under flower pots or in other ground-based, warm, dry, sheltered and concealed spots while geckos are more often tree dwellers. The forest gecko (mokopirirakau granulatus), pictured top, is an ornately patterned lizard that is able to change the intensity of its colouration from dark brown to light grey to keep it well camouflaged on lichen or tree bark. Like all lizards it is cold blooded so basks in the sun to gain heat. New Zealand geckos are unusual in that they bear live young, generally twins. (Most geckos worldwide are egg layers.) When my children were young, we once found a forest gecko immobile on the lawn below our big rimu tree so we took it inside. From a lifeless state, it warmed up after a while indoors and scampered off around the kitchen until we retrieved it and released it back outdoors. We also had one that would bask on our outside lounge wall in the sunshine, but it is some time now since I have seen one in the wild. Another gecko that is widespread in the North Island is the common gecko (woodworthia maculatus). This gecko spends much of its time on the ground in forest, scrub and grassland in habitat ranging from seashore to alpine vegetation zones. It is grey or brown, with paler irregular or stripy patches. The common gecko is long-lived with individuals known to live well into their 40s, particularly in a cool temperate climate. They have ‘sticky’ feet: their toes are covered with microscopic hairs that allow them to climb sheer surfaces and even walk upside down across the ceiling. A third local gecko, the Auckland green gecko (Naultinus elegans), pictured centre, is found in the northern half of the North Island of New Zealand, except north of Whangaroa. It favours manuka and kanuka scrub, where it basks in the foliage during the day. The best way to search for geckos is by torchlight at night when you can spot their reflective eyes in the treetops. Choose kanuka forest in our area as it is favoured by the forest gecko. However, spotting them is more easily said than done. Geckos hunt for food at night, eating insects, flies and moths but also nectar and the berries of plants such as coprosma. Geckos are able to shed their tails, a predator defence mechanism, with the cast tail continuing to thrash while they make their escape.

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The tail regrows over the next few years. They are vulnerable to the usual predatory mammals, including cats, rodents, mustelids and possums. To attract geckos to your garden provide rocks and large areas of dense shrubs e.g. coprosma and muehlenbeckia. These will provide both safe cover and food from their fruit All geckos are important contributors to native ecosystems, both as predator and prey, and play a role in plant pollination and seed dispersal. Most of them have ‘at risk’ status. The decline in gecko populations is a result of habitat loss and increasing predation from pest species but Auckland Council is working to reverse the downward trend in numbers and distribution. Dylan van Winkel Geckos are fully protected, and can only be handled, collected or kept in captivity under permit. The good news is you can easily see more than one close up at the Arataki Visitor Centre where forest and green geckos share an enclosure and are cared for by Brian Lawton from Creatures Unlimited. The most common skinks you might see are the native copper skink (cyclodina aenea), pictured bottom left, or the introduced Australian rainbow skink (lampropholis delicate). Due to its reproduction rate, the rainbow skink is classified as a pest as it is posing a threat to our native lizards. It lays up to eight eggs three times a year, breeding five times faster than our native lizards, with which they compete for food and habitat. It is more common in suburban gardens than native bushland. It looks very similar in colour to the copper skink but is smaller and has a rainbow sheen when seen in bright light. The best way to differentiate the two species is the scale pattern on their head. Rainbow skins have one large diamond shaped scale, whereas native skinks have two smaller scales. The copper skink is endemic to the North Island and is a highly alert lizard with exceptional senses of smell, hearing and sight. It grows to around 13cm in length. Unlike the rainbow skink, it produces live young and raises between three and six babies a year. Both skinks have the same predators as geckos but are more susceptible than geckos to predation by birds such as magpies, kingfishers and blackbirds. In the past Māori feared lizards Mokomoko (skinks and geckos), and to a lesser extent tuatara. Lizards were seen as representatives of Whiro, the god of darkness, evil and death. Ngārara (reptiles) were believed to be descended from Punga, a son of Tangaroa, the sea god. All descendants of Punga – including other creatures such as sharks and insects – were said to be repulsive, ugly or offensive.

Linda Cooper

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Soft plastic recycling bins return After a five-month hiatus, recycling of soft plastic has returned to Auckland writes FIONA DRUMMOND. As in many households, we had become diligent about separating our soft plastic, only to have the recycle bins taken away. We did continue to stockpile it, but not as conscientiously as we had before. Of course the ultimate is to try and avoid soft plastics in the first place. With fewer plastic bags in circulation, waste has reduced but there are still the other soft plastics – packaging, cling wrap, frozen food packets courier packs, etc. Using food covers, beeswax wraps and silicon lids for the fridge and microwave have reduced our cling wrap usage considerably, but the plastic packaging that is thrust upon us remains a major problem. Auckland Council have an ambitious goal of zero waste to landfill by 2040. This can be achieved with a ‘circular economy model’. While the world’s dominant economic model is ‘take, make and waste’, the circular economy offers a truly sustainable alternative as resources are never abandoned to become waste. Products Look for soft plastic recycling bins are designed to be safe and easy to manage in at local Countdown stores. Photo by Martin de Ruyter. cycles of production and reproduction. Materials that can be safely composted or otherwise returned to the environment circulate in one set of systems. Materials like plastics, metals and petrochemical based products circulate in another set of systems. Product design means these can be easily separated at the end of the product’s life. This allows the materials to be used for more products or to enhance the natural world. In New Zealand this process can be entirely powered by renewable energy. Our soft plastics had been going to Australia but since the suspension of soft plastic collection, new local processing partners have been able to build capacity and find new and innovative processing solutions. Two New Zealand companies have been utilising the stockpiled plastics. Future Post converts the plastic into fence posts and garden edging and Life Plastics manufactures cable covers, buckets, ducting and other products. Other companies are trialling further ways to use our plastic waste. Although we can make our own contributions to reducing our plastic consumption (visit for inspiration), we can also now recycle the pesky plastic that we can’t avoid. Soft plastic recycling bins can be found locally at the Countdown stores in LynnMall, Lynfield and Universal Drive, Henderson.

weather by the moon Ken Ring’s predictions for June June is a month of two halves, unsettled and wet for the first 15 days, then patches of clear weather with occasional showers during the second half. The heaviest rainfall may be in the second week, and a further dump around the 22nd. There are more days with cloud than with sun. The average wind direction is from the southeast. The windiest day may be the 6th. The average maximums may be 17-19°C and minimums may be 10-12°C. The warmest day may be around the 2nd with about 18-20°C max, and the coolest night may be around 15th with only 3°C. Average humidity is around 85%. Overall the barometer may average around 1015 mbs. The highest air pressure reading may be approximately 1030mbs on the 16th and 23rd, and the lowest about 1000mbs on or near the 5th. The best interval in June for outside activities should be the 23rd-26th. Highest tides are on the 4th and 17th with neap tides on the 12th and 26th. For fishermen, the best bite-times in the West are around noon on the 2nd-4th and 16th-19th. Chances are also better in the West around dusk on the 9th-11th and 24th-27th. South-easterlies predominate between the 8th and 24th. For gardeners, the best sowing interval is the 7th-16th, when the waxing moon is ascending. The best pruning periods are the 1st-2nd and 20th-30th, when the waning moon is descending. If harvesting for preservation and longer shelf-life, choose the lower water-table days of the 12th and 26th. Allow 24 hour error for all forecasting. For future weather for any date, visit © Ken Ring 2019.

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Minding my own ‘social enterprise’ Yeah gidday. Lizard here. My Dad always said: “Lizard, the world’s your Kina.” Unfortunately he died aged 45 of gout. Mum, on the other hand was fond of saying: “I’m looking forward to optimism.” Mum is now in her 90s. Me, I like to rely on good old fashioned luck. This brings us to the day Shaz dragged me along to the annual Baptist Bring a Bible to Bingo BBQ at Bethells Bash. Blimey. We bought a raffle ticket and blow me Brian, bloody well won. Turns out, the prize was some kind of electronic box thingy that the kids eventually fitted to the telly which made it ‘smart’. I could watch re-runs of all me old favourite shows. This was perfect because I had time to kill while Shaz was at work. She had started back at the Razza, dusting off the gym equipment and checking no-one had left any urine containers beside the pokies. (The true professionals never leave their machines. Not for a minute.) I began with Minder. You’d remember Minder? It starred Dennis Waterman as Terry McCann, a former boxer and Arthur Daley, played by George Cole, as a bit of a shady businessman. This inspired me. I’d always fancied myself as a ‘Jack the lad’ and it was while studying Arthur Daley I came up with the recycling business you all know me for. Yep, this is where Lizard’s Litter all started. Research took quite a while as the show ran from 1979 til 1994. 114 episodes but eventually the penny dropped. As you may know, South Auckland never adopted our policy on single use plastic bags. They, like most of us, truth be known, love them. So, I set up a meeting with the Papatoetoe branch of the Asian Pacific Open Market Seafood Taro and Tapa Consortium to discuss my proposal. After a few cups of kava and much back-slapping a deal was reached. They agreed to use my dropoff centre at the Avondale raceway which coincided with the weekly market day. Already hundreds of punters were gathered there, scoring well-priced veg and cheap x-box machines. Brilliant. I didn’t even need

to collect the thousands of discarded plastic bags. Fortunately, the prevailing winds blew most of the bags up against the hedges and fences making it very easy for my kids to gather up. A few hundred got away, but I saw those as free advertising by teasing the market. As Arthur Daley so wisely said, “Terry my son, it’s supply and demand.” The rest is history. I got together a few gangs of youths who had already started to congregate around the huge affordable apartment developments in Glen Eden and New Lynn and got them to door knock. As predicted, hundreds of residents needed our single use plastic bags for a multitude of reasons and were happy to pay handsomely. They had been so shamed into using larger multi-use plastic bags that their veggie peelings were out of control. At last they had convenient plastic bags to gather up the empty beer bottles that had been dangerously rolling around on the floor of their cars. As is now public knowledge, my door-to-door business has expanded into supplying the best knock-off sports apparel and genuinely similar to famous perfumes this side of Bali. I’m also very proud to have turned around some lives. As we all know, these tower blocks attract a certain undesirable element. I asked the leaders of the once rival gangs, Devils Wear Dentures and the Killer Possums to stop selling after-market brake pads to the St John ambulance people and forget about shipping used mobility scooters to over-sized kiwis living near the giant malls springing up around Surfers Paradise. Now these once troubled youth have a purpose. I can’t wait until they legalise marijuana. It will fly off my shelves making them truly ‘high’-rise towers. Tee hee. P.S. I’m in the market for a new motor. Anyone got a 70s Jaguar for sale? Later, Lizard


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The Fringe for June 2019  

The Fringe, formerly the Titirangi Tatler, is a community magazine serving West Auckland.

The Fringe for June 2019  

The Fringe, formerly the Titirangi Tatler, is a community magazine serving West Auckland.


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