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inations COVID-19 vaccr everyone fo are now open d over 12 years an ls t powerful too one of the mos ely free and are They’re complet us g givin 9. and ID-1 land against COV ryone in New Zea in protecting eve tion today. Play your part k your vaccina in the future. Boo more options

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Letters: kauri dieback and Titirangi toilets; Lockdown art ....................3 Get ready for another arty weekend in the Ranges ..............................4 Art under lockdown; Titirangi hosts the America’s Cup ........................5


Books: Kōwhai and the Giants, After Dark and Melt .............................6 Take the EcoMatters challenge ..............................................................7 Art and about with Naomi McCleary ...............................................8 – 9 Bandstanding: ‘Stinky Grooves Jim: way too clunky’...........................10 Mother India – responding to social issues .........................................11 Places to go: Events listing ..........................................................12 – 13


Covid comfort cooking.................................................................14 – 15 Our place: Our history Call for Muddy Creek’s history to see the light ..............................16 Boat-building in Titirangi ................................................................17 Titirangi Soldiers’ Memorial Church nears 100 years .....................18 Titirangi Beach general store and tearooms ..................................19 Sustainable solutions: Living lighter on the planet..............................20 Naturally West: Kōwhai heralds sunnier days; Weather by the moon .........................................................................21


Live @ the lounge................................................................................22 Advertisers’ Directory ..........................................................................23

On our cover: Atlas II, in storage in a boat-builders shed in Titirangi. Who would have known there was once had a boat-building business on our shores? (See page 17 for more.) Photo by Zoe Hawkins.


a book of your choice

The Fringe has a copy of After Dark or Kōwhai and the Giants to give away. (See page 6 for more information.) To go in the draw to win one of these special books, write your name, address and phone number on the back of an envelope, along with the title of the book you would like to win and post it to: Fringe Books Competition, PO Box 60-469, Titirangi, Auckland 0642 to reach us by October 15, or you can email your answer and contact details to (with the name of the book in the subject line).

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.


The Fringe OCTOBER 2021 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: David Thiele, Naomi McCleary, Susannah Bridges, Fiona Drummond, Michael Andrew, Cynthia Smith.

Advertising deadline for November 2021: October 15.

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Dear Editor, It’s over three years since Auckland Council locked the public out of the Waitākere Ranges, saying that human and animal foot traffic was spreading a newly introduced pathogen Phytophthora agathidicida (PTA) through the forest and that it was decimating kauri. It is becoming increasingly apparent that the council stance is not supported by science, history or observation. A recent investigation of PTA using genome sequencing found that it has been dispersed throughout North Island kauri areas for “between several hundred and several thousand years.” The same study notes that it is unlikely that PTA is spread by “human-mediated transport”. Similarly, pigs were initially touted as spread vectors. This rhetoric has faded after two studies of a large number of wild pigs have found no PTA on trotters or snouts. These two points, that PTA is endemic and that there is no evidence of human transmission, contradict the reasons that the Council used to close the park. Council says that PTA will decimate the kauri population of the Waitākeres. This is also not supported following observations made on Great Barrier Island. The influence of PTA on kauri ill-thrift was first recognised in New Zealand on the island in the early 1970s. 50 years later the same kauri stands are flourishing, not decimated as Council would have us believe. Aerial surveys from 2012 and 2017 have been used to justify the closure of tracks. These studies were critically reviewed, failed to identify causes of ill-thrift and drew unjustified conclusions. They also failed to mention that of the 149 very sick trees actually tested for PTA, 75% were dying from other causes. Since the 1870s the Waitākeres have been logged, burnt, farmed and supported major infrastructure developments. As the area recovers it does so from a new base – soil biochemistry, species dispersal, run-off patterns, wind exposure, and so on are all different. It is not surprising that some kauri will not be viable, and will die to make way for the more robust to survive. This is what we would expect in a regenerating ecosystem. Council has robbed the public of a major wilderness experience that sits on the edge of the country’s biggest city. We can’t take our kids down to the creeks to look for eels or to battle our way up the ridge lines. Walkers, runners and those wanting to reinforce their mental and emotional well-being in the forest, have all been denied their rights by a mis-guided Council.

Dear Editor, Was wondering if you could throw some light on when we may have operational public toilets in the Village. I am aware of a past article that indicated these would be located by the bus stop/ rimu tree, but that it was still going through the consent process. Bearing in mind we have not had a toilet in the Village for considerable time (two years?), I am getting to the end of my tether being reliant on the goodwill of local cafés for either myself or grandchildren. If the Memorial Hall is open that is another option but with grandkids not always a practical one – when they want to go they want to go now! I am also aware of the slow pace of the construction process, that will only be made worse with Covid lockdown. What I’m about to suggest is not something I ever thought would be necessary: Portaloos - but desperate times require desperate measures. Regards Chris Iszard, local resident of 56 years. Ed: The most recent information I have from Council is that “the team is working towards physical works commencing on site in March 2023 and construction will take approximately 8 – 10 weeks.” Can you hold on for another 18 months?

Delve into your photo albums – Titirangi School is turning 150! In 2022 Titirangi School marks 150 years as a formal school. The school is getting ready to mark the moment and has put a call out to the community for photos, video or stories from any time in the school’s existence - recent history too. Can you help? Email All original copies provided will be returned to you.

Lockdown Art

Yours, Bob Armitstead Ed: Observations in and around Titirangi suggest that kauri are indeed dying in surprisingly large numbers and the Village skyline has changed dramatically in the last 15 years. As kauri dieback disease appears the most likely cause, it seems smart to control its spread. And if PTA is not to blame, control is even more important until the cause is known. The closure of the Ranges has not been popular but there are times when civic responsibility outweighs concepts of ‘ownership’ or ‘rights’. And if that means allowing time for research to be conducted, so be it. N.B: A bibliography of the research cited above has been provided. Email info@ for a copy.

Lockdown saw many random artworks pop up around the West. The flowers were found in Kopiko Road and the extended family was in Seabrook Ave, New Lynn. Photos by Rick Mayne.

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The Fringe OCTOBER 2021


things to do

Get ready for another arty weekend in the Ranges

2021 set to be the biggest year yet for Open Studios Waitakere with many new artists extending an invitation for all to attend the Open Studios Preview Exhibition in November. The annual Open Studios Waitākere event has been running for the last six years. Renee Tanner who organises the event says: “Last year there were more than 80 artists involved, and 40 studios from Piha to Glen Eden, Titirangi to Te Henga opening their doors to the public. This year we have 16 new studios joining in which is phenomenal.” The event, funded by the Waitākere Ranges Local Board, provides a unique opportunity for attendees to meet local artists in the area, see art in action, purchase local artwork and learn about the creative process. Historically the west is well known as a haven for artists, and Open Studios brings that to life in a wonderful, participatory way. “It’s been growing in popularity each year and is something many people look forward to. In fact, we had more than 1000 visitors for two years running, and we constantly aim to increase that with the variety and scale on offer each time. The feedback we get is overwhelmingly positive thanks to the artists involved. “An enormous amount of work goes into making the event happen, with sculptors, painters, jewellers, illustrators, ceramic artists and photographers taking part, many also offering limited editions and one-off pieces, “ says Renee. The event has embraced technology to help attendees choose where they go with a bespoke app. Visitors can take a self-guided tour at their own pace by using the Open Studios Waitākere App, or by picking up a copy of the event brochure and map. “There’s also an Open Studios Bus Tour which visits a wide range of studios and includes a packed lunch, so however you want to get involved we’ve got the bases covered,” says Renee. The event launches this year on November 1 with the Open Studios Preview Exhibition Opening at Lopdell House. “This special exhibition features artwork from participating artists and is a great way to begin your Open Studios Waitakere experience. It might help you decide which of the many studios you’ll add to your list to visit over the weekend! “We are all very grateful to the Waitākere Ranges Local Board who fund and support the event and to Lopdell House for hosting the Open Studios Preview Exhibition,” Renee says. Look out for copies of the event brochure and map or contact Renee to receive one in the post. Visit the event website,, and start planning your arty weekend in the Waitākere Ranges. 2021 artists include (clockwise from top left): Desmond Burdon, Guy Clifford, Derek March, Pauline McCoy, Melissa Hastings, Hope Didsbury, Steve Tollestrup and Peter Force.

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The Fringe OCTOBER 2021

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our place

Titirangi hosts the America’s Cup

There was plentyto celebrate at the French Bay Yacht Club prize giving for 2021, held before Level 4 lockdown. This included the successful signing of a new lease that means the club has a home at its French Bay site through to 2046. There were also two years of sailing achievements to recognise: the 2020 prize giving was cancelled due to lockdown. The presence of the real America’s Cup at the clubhouse for the evening made it extra special. FBYC is grateful to the Royal NZ Yacht Squadron for making this possible – it’s a moment local kids (and many of their parents) will remember forever.

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Art under lockdown ...

The Fringe approached Te Uru Waitākere Contemporary Gallery to check on the major events that are coming up. Not surprisingly, the situation was rather fluid, as director ANDREW CLIFFORD outlined a few weeks ago. “Thanks for getting in touch. Each time I’m about to send you an update, things go and change again. Some events can be confirmed and booked only to be postponed a few days later when we go into lockdown! Rinse and repeat … “So right now our primary focus is trying to plan for the delayed installation of our spring season of exhibitions, which we could only work on once we were in level three, but they were all due to open earlier in September and will now have a much shorter run. “Of particular note is an exhibition of artist portraits by the late, great Marti Friedlander. She started out working in West Auckland and many of the photos in the exhibition happen to be of iconic Westies. It’s a major show and there might only be a month, if that, for people to see it. “Beyond that, Portage is ticking away. We were pleased to get a really good selection of entries despite Covid, and these are now all with the judge. The awards night should be on November 19, with the usual judge’s tour the day after. But this, one of our flagship events is still dependent on Auckland’s lockdown status ... “We’re still weighing up the next few month’s priorities and might be changing things around a bit to give some of the delayed exhibitions, particularly Marti Friedlander’s portraits, more time in the gallery. Let’s see how the next few weeks go.” We wish Te Uru, and all our galleries, music performers, thespians and other artists all the best as we continue to climb out of this Covid-induced hiatus!

Merger of West Auckland Law Firms We are pleased to announce the merger of David J Brown & Associates (lawyers in Titirangi) with Thomas & Co Lawyers Limited (lawyers in New Lynn). Thomas & Co already incorporates the practice of Ray Ganda (Titirangi Law Centre) from a merger in 2017. The original principals of the three practices, Ray, David and Don, have many years of experience working in West Auckland. The David J Brown & Associates team – Paula Fletcher, Legal Executive, Jaimee KirbyBrown, Lawyer and Danielle Norrie, Lawyer - join the merged team to continue to assist all their existing clients as well as the clients of the merged practices. See the “Our Team” tab on the website for the whole team. Our focus on service for our community and clients is behind the merger. The directors and staff of the combined practices can now offer an even wider range of skills and resources. This means we can meet your every legal requirement. There is always someone available with the necessary knowledge and experience to assist with any legal matters that might arise. Give us a call, or come in and visit us. We welcome enquiries and are happy to answer any questions. Details of our office location and on-site parking can be found under the “Contact” tab on our website. We have lift access and are also handy to the bus/train interchange. This means that visiting our office is easy and convenient.

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The Fringe OCTOBER 2021



Light and dark – winning works from local authors

Waitākere local, conservationist and ecologist Annette Lees’ third book After Dark: Walking into the Nights of Aotearoa is due out this month with the writer sharing discoveries from a lifetime of walking deep into the night, from dusk to dawn. Annette (pictured right) has been an outdoor and natural world enthusiast from childhood. With a MSc degree and a career in conservation, her book takes readers on a journey through the night hours in what is often a hidden world. She shares her experiences and observations about those who inhabit the night, from lighthouse keepers, trampers, navigators and ecologists to ghosts, kiwi and kākāpō. Tales of night-time activities include surfing, fishing, mountaineering, community gatherings, floodlit rugby games and voyaging on waka. Her other books also explore our connections to nature: The Deep Sky Waits on the Outskirts of Town (1996) and Swim: A year of swimming outdoors in New Zealand (2018). The latter, about wild swimming through the seasons was long-listed for the 2019 Royal Society Prize of the Ockham Book Awards.

Another local author, visual artist and theatre maker, Kate Parker (left) from Laingholm, has won the picture book category of the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young People. Kōwhai and the Giants was first released in March and tells the story of the decimation of forests following human habitation. The unique and intriguing artwork for the book was created from hand-cut paper, placed in a plywood box and lit from behind. It was first exhibited in 2016 at the Arataki Visitor Centre following Kate’s artist residency at Anawhata. Book Awards judges said their hearts were captured by “this gentle environmental story, both for its call to action and the original illustrations.” They described the book as a classic in the making, delivering an important message for future generations in an engaging manner. Fringe readers have the opportunity to win both of these superb books in our giveaway (see details on page 2). – Moira Kennedy.

What might our future be? Recent weather events have focussed the attention of many on the threats posed by climate change and the actions we need to take to prepare for and mitigate the challenges our future holds. Local writer and consultant, ROB TAYLOR has given this considerable thought over recent years, as has local author Jeff Murray. Here is Rob’s review of Jeff’s book Melt: At the beginning of this century, New Scientist magazine ran an article on the Earth in the year 2100. It included a map showing how each region could fare: the tropics were uninhabitable, the subtropics racked by storm, drought and famine. The entry for New Zealand was terse: “Unrecognisable. Population: 100 million”. Melt, a geopolitical thriller by author Jeff Murray shows how that scenario might come about. Set in 2048 and ranging from a low-lying Pacific island to New Zealand, the Southern Ocean and Antarctica,

it extrapolates from today’s climate crisis to a world divided into refugees, consigned to camps, and migrants, whose wealth and connections guarantee them a place at the table. A novel of ideas that are currently only whispered, it posits that the dominant economic and military powers of the northern hemisphere will quietly but firmly recolonise the nations that border the Southern Ocean, New Zealand in particular. As uncontrollable climate chaos looms, we are the ideal staging zone for a mass migration of wealthy Chinese and Americans to long-term refuge in Antartica. Our feisty heroine, Islander lawyer Vai Shuster, is tasked with making good the New Zealand government’s promise to resettle the entire population of her island, but she knows that the regions on offer, Northland and Hawkes Bay, are disaster zones, and is determined to do better for her people, no matter what. The assorted scientists, politicians, criminals and eco-warriors she meets along the way make for a gripping read, a harbinger of the climate realpolitik to come if business-as-usual prevails. Melt is available for $25 from

Embossed Lights 6

The Fringe OCTOBER 2021

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out & about

Take the EcoMatters challenge

EcoMatters is encouraging cyclists to discover the city’s street art scene during October, and be in to win $1,000 in prizes. The Street Art Bike Challenge, is a month-long photo treasure hunt by bike in which people are invited to look for street art across Auckland and share their photos. EcoMatters Bike Hubs manager Brent Bielby says a similar challenge in 2020, the Power Box Bike Challenge, was well received by the community. “This year we wanted to expand the event to encompass all public art, not just power boxes. “It’s amazing how much street art there is around Auckland. Once your eyes are open and you start to look around, you become hooked on trying to find different pieces, and the city never looks the same again. And it’s a great excuse to jump on your bike and explore your surroundings.” The challenge is a family-friendly event all ages can enjoy while adhering to Covid-19 restrictions and physical distancing. To enter, get on your bike and discover local street art; take a photo that includes the artwork, you, and your bike; and share your photo with the #StreetArtBikeChallenge hashtag in a public post on your Facebook or Instagram profile with the street name and suburb. Find out more at

WestWards Community Voice

Rational Planning I, like many, started September cleaning up storm debris and fixing flood damage. Again, this storm highlighted ongoing maintenance issues and shone a spotlight on Council practices. Our roads experienced multiple serious slips. Locations with poor roadside maintenance and blocked culverts and drains were particularly hard hit, while well-maintained areas came through the storm relatively unscathed. One of our Local Board Plan ‘Outcomes’ is ‘resilient communities’. Good maintenance is the basis of preparedness, and preparedness is resilience. It reminds me to keep focusing on the basics.

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The Trusts has announced that it is moving its entire workforce to a living wage, bringing forward earlier plans by almost two years. The move will cost the organisation almost $750,000 per annum and is set to benefit more than 300 staff across 35 retail stores, hospitality venues and hotels. The wage increase will be implemented ahead of schedule despite widespread disruption to the hospitality industry from COVID-19. All staff will see a new living wage rate of at least $22.75 per hour, which is $2.75 above the government’s new minimum wage level. All waged employees who currently earn above the organisation's starting rate will also receive an increase of $2 per hour. The increase will be in addition to a 10% support payment to acknowledge their front line staff working during the pandemic. Trusts CEO Allan Pollard says the living wage was originally planned for the second quarter of 2023 however new financial projections mean these plans can now take immediate effect. “It is our aim to ensure that our team members feel more valued and that this will make a material difference to their wellbeing and that of their whānau.”

service’ for example, more than doubled in cost. Of course, this also increases carbon emissions, which flies in the face of Council’s policy to significantly reduce CO2 emissions. The cost of transporting one bin or truckload of slip material 92 km (184 km round trip) easily goes unnoticed in Council’s budgets, but when big volumes are involved, the costs are breath-taking. A glaring example was the 2500m³ of slip material that fell on Te Henga Rd, Waitākere. To transport this material to Council-approved landfill (in large trucks) would have entailed 23,000 km of travel. I wrote to the Mayor and Councillors challenging this, suggesting the old Waitākere Quarry (less than 1km down the same road) could be used to process this organic material. The money saved would be significant and could be used to restore the Waitākere Quarry for public recreational use as long promised.. Council’s precautionary approach is neither rational or warranted. Kauri dieback disease is transmitted by a waterborne organism that can be carried on a single speck of soil. Floods wash vast quantities of suspended solids across the land, which makes Council’s precautionary demands ineffectual against localised spread. Moreover, Council requirements risk spreading kauri dieback further than flooding ever could. It’s impossible to reduce carbon emissions whilst demanding increased transportation, especially for questionable reasons. Council’s planning must involve practical solutions. Ken Turner – WestWards


This storm also highlighted the inefficiencies and unwanted impacts of Council’s current approach regarding disposal of organic material in Waitākere. For two years now Council has demanded that organic material like soil and weed vegetation from the Waitākere Ranges must be wrapped in industrial grade plastic and taken to a ‘contaminated landfill’ south of Auckland as a precaution against the possible spread of kauri dieback. You might have noticed the enormous plastic bags lining community weed bins. Similarly soil from the slips must be wrapped and taken to a rural site South of Auckland. The environmental and cost impact is significant. Our community ‘weed-bins

Move to Living Wage brought forward

The Fringe OCTOBER 2021


art & about with naomi mccleary

New in the ’hood

Two critical positions in the arts fabric of Waitakere, one at the Corban Estate Arts Centre (CEAC) and another at Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Art Gallery (Te Uru), have new faces. I know that each individual expected to take up these roles ‘live’ and on site. They are both dancing with the reality of arts leadership in our online world. Luana Walker (Waikato–Tainui) has taken on the mantle of directorship of CEAC. Despite our current lockdown, the excitement in response to her appointment has not diminished and she is relishing the time that she has to get to know her team without the distractions of the dayto-day running of the estate. Luana comes to CEAC after considerable time in arts management at Auckland Council and Auckland Museum. She has a track record of building strong and vibrant teams who can deliver across the spectrum of arts, education, event delivery and site management.

way. The return of Tendai Mutambu (pronouns: he/him/his) from the UK, where he worked as Assistant Curator of Commissions and Public Programmes at Spike Island in Bristol [an inner city and harbour area where artists, designers, writers, students, artist-led organisations and creative businesses work together], is one such blessing. Prior to going to the UK three years ago, Tendai had built a significant catalogue of curatorial project experience in New Zealand both in Tamaki Makaurau and at the Govett-Brewster/Len Lye Centre in New Plymouth. He has now stepped into the role of Acting Curator at Te Uru for the next year while Chloe Geoghegan takes leave. His wealth of knowledge and experience internationally and locally is a gift to the programme that Te Uru will deliver over coming months. In order to dig a little deeper into what these two new players in the Westie scene will bring to the creative life of our communities, I sent them each a set of questions. What are the wellsprings of your life and experience that have led you to your current profession? Luana: I would say that it is people. I’ve been very fortunate throughout my life to work alongside and for some incredible people. They have shared their expertise and experiences and supported me through numerous challenges. They have helped shaped my career through mentorship and opportunity. It’s my belief that the investment we make in people is one of the greatest gifts and the biggest responsibility we have. This might be a greenhouse analogy, but it’s the people that we grow and nurture today that will become our leaders of tomorrow. Tendai: I enjoyed making art well into my late teens but gradually I began to enjoy looking at, and writing about, other people’s work a lot more than making my own. I studied art history through the correspondence school – my school in small town New Zealand didn’t offer it as a subject. I was hooked immediately and I did quite well so I decided to pursue it at university. After a few internships, including at the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice, Italy, which had a stellar modern art collection, I realised I was more interested in contemporary art and working with living artists who are responding to our times.

Luana Walker. Photo by Tyler Te Ano.

But it’s the Luana, who last year sold her car and bought a glasshouse, that interests me. The first lockdown heightened her awareness that what once was deemed to be ‘up there’ suddenly seemed irrelevant when cooped up at home with no opportunity to go anywhere. At the same time global warming was front and centre on the news every week and while Covid-19 changed the world overnight, she shared that sense that our planet was taking a breath of fresh air while planes, trains and cars were grounded. Returning to work in a central city office lost its glow and after many months she suddenly realised that she hadn’t filled up her car with petrol, let alone driven it. That moment cemented the decision that the car could go. The pandemic had made seeds one of the most soughtafter products (along with flour and toilet paper). Blessed with a large backyard and piles of infamous Titirangi clay the idea of a greenhouse was born. The car was sold, the kitset greenhouse purchased and erected after long weekends in the pouring rain. She describes with relish the process of raising seedlings, composting, installing water tanks and the first ‘pickable’ crops. This woman does not do things by halves. In the global wash of talent around the globe, now pushed by currents of the Covid pandemic, good fortune sometimes comes our


The Fringe OCTOBER 2021

Within your arts practice, what are your passions? Luana: Early in my arts career it was all about creation. I loved to see artwork evolve and the hardest thing was deciding when a work was finished. As I moved into other roles throughout my career, creation was still front and centre, but I was fortunate to learn kaitiakitanga [guardianship] during my time at Tāmaki Paenga Hira. To care for and protect art resonated with me and as you consider the generations that will come after you, it becomes even more important that we ensure knowledge, narratives, and our history are preserved. Tendai: I’ve been working quite a lot recently with artists’ film and video – curating it into screenings for cinemas, galleries, and film festivals including the London Film Festival in 2018. I’ve also been working as an assistant producer for an artist in the UK who is making her first feature-length film. It’s a recent development in my interests but it’s been really rewarding. Beyond that I have a practice as a writer. Mostly I write essays for artists’ publications but occasionally I write criticism as well. What is your ‘go to’ R&R? Luana: At the time of building, I would never have said it would be the greenhouse, but now that it is complete, I find the tending of plants very relaxing. Sowing seeds, watching them sprout, waiting for flowers to emerge and seeing the insect world become part of the growing process is really satisfying. I’ll also admit that I frequent Bunnings a lot. Tendai: It gets a bit complicated working with art for a living and trying to use it as a tool to relax but I still find looking at and thinking about art – without the pressure of deadlines – relaxing. When I’m not doing that I turn to books. (I’m currently making my way through Percival Everett’s short stories, and re-reading Forty-one False Starts

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art & about with naomi mccleary

by one of the finest essayists of our time who died recently). I’ve had a subscription to the film service Mubi for a while but I’m only just starting to make the most of it this lockdown. What are your fears and anxieties about the Covid world - and what are your hopes and aspirations? Luana: I do worry what long-term impact Covid will have on our creative sector. What has always been a challenging space to make a living in, has and will become harder as community priorities and financial burdens are realised. However, I’ve seen first-hand how the creative arts bring hope. Coming together for a shared purpose and vision can inspire and ignite and as long as we continue to champion, remain strong and resilient, the sector will continue to flourish. Tendai: One of my fears is that the rhetoric of being ‘in this together’ is obscuring the impact this pandemic has on disadvantaged communities. It’s not difficult to see who this pandemic will affect most disproportionately and we can link that to a history of dispossession and poverty. Fortunately, I also see glimpses of people around me reflecting on what kind of world they’d like to build and be part of. My hope is this moment galvanises us all into action. Tell me a little about your more concrete plans for the next 12 months. Luana: Over the next 12 months, Corban Estate Arts Centre will undergo a lot of change. Earthquake strengthening is about to commence on our buildings which will cause many movements around the estate as we seek to create some sense of normality amongst the chaos. It will be a time of disruption in our already disruptive pandemic world and this is when leadership becomes essential. I lean into the challenges ahead with a positive view on our future and feel inspired about what CEAC will become and what role we will play as part of a creative precinct in west Auckland.

Tendai Mutambu. Photo by Erika Stevenson.

Tendai: For most of the next 12 or so months I’ll be working with the team at Te Uru to deliver projects with a stellar cast of collaborators. These include, among others, Stars Start Falling guest curated by Hanahiva Rose; The Banaba Project/Te Kaneati, guest curated by Yuki Kihara; and I’ll be working with the artist George Watson to stage her first major one-person exhibition in a public gallery at Te Uru. George is making a new video work that draws on literature and the life of Katherine Mansfield, in order to explore concepts of imagination, desire, and the politics of memory in settler Aotearoa. Continued on page 15 >>

Buckle up, this is going to get rough

The west has had a rough time recently. Not only do we have Covid to worry about but in the space of a week the West had to cope with a terrorist attack and being battered by another of those one-in-100-year storms that seems to happen every couple of years. There was some significant damage caused to local infrastructure by the storm. •

Bethells Te Henga was cut off for a period of time after a huge downpour caused the river to shift and undermine the road into the village. Urgent work undertaken by AT has reopened the road.

The Waitākere Ranges Local Board Future West team are (left to right) Mark Allen, Saffron Toms, Sandra Coney and Greg Presland.

Karekare has had a significant slip take out most of Lone Kauri Road and AT is addressing this particular slip. There are three other slips on the road and it will take months to remedy.

suddenly completely full. Water quality has plummeted as the sediment levels in the dams has built up and Watercare has recently had to purge the lower levels of two of its dams in an attempt to improve water quality.

Mountain Road has had two significant slips.

Huia was battered and Whatipu is still isolated.

Other parts of the roading infrastructure in the area have also suffered major damage.

This is a stark reminder that Climate Change is a current and ever present threat and that if we are to avoid the worst effects we do need to make fundamental change.

Watercare’s system also took a hammering. From a situation where the city was facing likely water shortages next Summer the west’s dams were

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These sorts of one-in-a-hundred-year storms have hit the west three times in the past three years. Buckle up, this is going to get rough. – Greg Presland Advertisement

The Fringe OCTOBER 2021


bandstanding: music in the west with susannah bridges

Stinky Grooves Jim: way too clunky ...

213 – 215 Woodlands Park Road, Titirangi, Auckland 0604 Phone: 09 817 8495 or 09 817 6188


The Fringe OCTOBER 2021

Jim had no real release intentions for any of his more recent creations. But “the combination of lockdown last year, Bandcamp Fridays (where Bandcamp forgoes its share of returns for one day a month so it becomes like a digital Record Store Day) and my better half giving me a nudge to actually get something out, all combined to get me chucking out a bunch of one-offs for free last year. Once that starts happening, you think about an album … and then this happens. “I upgraded my studio computer and did a stock take revealing over 200 songs. After over a week’s worth of going through, assessing and ranking I could see an album in amongst the rubble. “I did as much as possible here in Titirangi and then I took the 10 songs that make up the album down to (producer/engineer) Angus McNaughton in Dunedin and spent a few days mixing them at his amazing studio on the Peninsula.” Native Instruments’ ‘Maschine’ is Jim’s production weapon of choice “along with a lot of new toys and a few old delays, effects, synths and instruments. Who knows what these latest malodorous melodies grew out of, but everything I touch has a dubwise element. Beyond that it’s very much like Stinky Grooves – an intensive exploration into the sounds and feels that inspire, motivate and interest me. “I’ve been fortunate to work with some exceptionally talented, knowledgeable people over the last four decades but it’s a totally different ball game doing it on your tod. It’s daunting but ultimately very rewarding and humbling.” At time of writing Jim’s track Frying Symbols is number one on the 95bFM top 10. A couple more tracks should soon emerge. “I’ve been back down to Dunedin for a couple of DJ-ing gigs and to have two more tracks mixed. One of these should be getting a bit of a vocal version furnished from an overseas artist. The other is a nineminute dub track Runs On The Board dedicated to the Black Caps as it was finished in the haze of a day following the all-nighter of their World Test Championship win – and you can’t buy vibes like that.” A lover of our West in all aspects (“we never tire of the architecture, space and bush, the clean air, predominantly unpretentious locals and access to gobsmacking nature all around”), Jim’s latest lockdown best friend “is my Big Green Egg smoker. I’ve had it for over a decade and reckon I’m getting close to knowing what I’m doing. Nothing makes me happier than sticking some enormous, obscure cut of meat in there and leaving it for a ridonkulous amount of time – 24 hours is my record.” And of the moniker Stinky Jim? “When I started my radio show on 95bFM it needed a name pretty quickly as the station had a sponsor lined up. Stinky Grooves was a natural fit as everything stinks and no stink equals no funk. It also left more room to grow than calling myself a genre specific name or DJ Fantastico or whatever. It started appearing on posters as Stinky Grooves Jim, which is way too clunky so Stinky Jim it became”. (Search for ‘stink’ and ‘funk’ in relation to ‘music’ online and all will become clear.) Jim’s not a fan of streaming platforms like Spotify and YouTube but you can buy It's Not What It Sounds Like from “for a piddling $10”. Check out all things Stinky Jim at www.stinkyjim. com and subscribe at for early access to Jim’s Stinky Grooves show, as well as weekly exclusives, mixes and archive shows. Photo courtesy of 95bFM.

Resident in Tāmaki Makaurau for over three decades now, Jim Pinckney, aka Stinky Jim, arrived from London in ’88 and promptly immersed himself in our scene. The “recidivist record shop geezer” took up employment in our best-known stores, hosted a radio show on our coolest station, edited and wrote for our hippest mags, DJ’d live sets at our hottest clubs and bars and performed in some of our most progressive electronic live acts. Somewhere along the way he also established a record label and now it’s time for something more – which comes to us in the form of his debut album It’s Not What It Sounds Like. “I’ve always been obsessed with music. My earliest musical memory is probably Scottish pipe and drum bands which I loved as a nipper. Then Bowie, punk rock and everything sent me off to the deep end, dubious post punk bands and early experiments into dubbed out country music that were released on cassette in my teens.” Escape from family turmoil and the prospect of a lifetime of sitting on Tubes and dealing with London landed Jim on our shores but his obsession continued. His notorious 95bFM radio show Stinky Grooves began in 1990 and has been broadcast every week since. “I’ve been writing and reviewing since around the same time, first with Planet and The Fix, then Rip It Up, Real Groove, some overseas publications and finally The Listener.” Helping ’90s electronic act Nemesis Dub Systems out with some stuff spawned Jim’s live act Unitone Hi-Fi, which he founded with fellow Titirangian Joost Langeveld. Their sound was a mix of dance hall, hip-hop and local flavours that was new and exciting. Two more live acts Soundproof and Phase 5 grew out of Unitone HiFi. “It’s taken me from Aotearoa to Jamaica, New York, Fiji, all over Europe, Australia … I wouldn’t have it any other way but that’s the unsustainable past now.” Jim’s label Round Trip Mars was started in 1999 as a vehicle to release the music of Soundproof and Phase 5 “but there were a bunch of artists that didn’t fit in anywhere else who I loved and that distracted me for the next 15 years. The label is not active at present. Never say never but the idea of a discerning, non-commercial, creativity-led, genuinely independent label in 2021, in a world dominated by streaming and vanity vinyl, is too ridiculous to contemplate.” Making music every day “for the cathartic enjoyment of it”,

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art & about

Mother India – responding to social issues

Art as social commentary is a feature of local illustrator Anna Crichton’s work and Mother India – Embroidered Tales is an exhibition that reflects on her response to social issues of rural India, especially those that affect Indian women. Featuring hand stitched and beaded embroideries and wood block prints, this exhibition is sure to stimulate reflection and discussion. Working closely with local craftspeople through curious and patient translators (together with Google Translate), Anna provided the embroiderers and wood block carvers with the materials and detailed designs. The embroideries were then hand stitched onto hand loomed cloth. These were then sewn onto street-worn canvas backings – formerly pedal rickshaw canopies that Anna bought from their bewildered and amused drivers. After being exhibited in three New Zealand public galleries, the work will now be offered for sale, with a percentage going to the craftspeople Anna worked with in India. Mother India is planned to open on September 29, and runs until October 28 at The Railway Street Studios, 8 Railway Street, Newmarket.

Saturday 6 & Sunday 7 November 10am–4pm Visit some of Waitākere’s most celebrated artists including sculptors, painters, jewellers, illustrators, ceramic artists and photographers. With over 80 artists involved, and 40 studios from Piha to Glen Eden, Titirangi to Te Henga, it’s an inspiring weekend out and about. Take a self-guided tour at your own pace with our Open Studios Map and mobile App, or jump on an Open Studios Bus Tour. For more information visit or find us on Facebook and Instagram. Proudly supported by

Te Toi Uku is a museum which tells the stories of the West Auckland clay industry, from the early clay pipe-making days to the Crown Lynn era. Open Mon-Fri 10-4, Sat 10-3

7 Nov 2021 9am-1pm New Lynn Community Centre Gold coin entry

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The Fringe OCTOBER 2021


places to go – October 17, Wood and watercolour: paintings and sculpture by Len and Pamela Byles; West Coast Gallery, Seaview Road, Piha; Thursday/Friday 11am-3pm, Saturday/Sunday 10am-4pm; Phone 09 812 8029,


who, what, where, when in the west...

w – October 24, 1924 – works by Sosefina Andy, Ruby Joy Eade, Daphne Espiritu, Karen Rubado and Erica van Zon, a dynamic group of contemporary textile artists; Corban Estate Arts Centre, 2 Mount Lebanon Lane, Henderson. Phone 838 4455. www. – October 24, A Footnote on New Zealand History – Cindy Huang an object-based installation to recreate a market garden within the gallery space that reflects the sites where many historic Chinese and Māori relationships were cultivated around Aotearoa. By; Corban Estate Arts Centre, 2 Mount Lebanon Lane, Henderson. Phone 838 4455. www.


Do you have an upcoming event you’d like listed in The Fringe? Send the details, including a contact person and number, to info@


While we take care to ensure listings are correct, errors may occur. Check with the contact person wherever possible.

19, SeniorNet West Auckland, speaker, morning tea and chatting about computers; RSA Henderson, Poppy Restaurant, 66-70 Railside Avenue, Henderson; 10am. Phone June 021 179 3635.


22, Glen Eden Combined Probus Club: company and fellowship, interesting speakers, morning tea and monthly outings; Ceramco Park Function Centre, 120 Glendale Road, Kaurilands; 9.45am. Phone Brian Holt 838 5857.


22, Titirangi Folk Music Club presents Friday Folk, an informal gathering of musicians and singers; meeting by Zoom. Visit www. for details or text Cathy on 021 207 7289.



w November 2, Concatenation, a selection of artworks by senior students from Green Bay High School; Learning Centre Gallery, Te Uru, 420 Titirangi Road. Phone 817 8070.


w – December 5, Mercury in Retrograde, Iza Lozano, Zhu Ohmu, Maia McDonald and Te Ara Minhinnick present an exhibition of contemporary ceramics; Te Uru, 420 Titirangi Road. Phone 817 8070.


23 – November 21, Paintings by Mandy Patmore; West Coast Gallery, Seaview Road, Piha; Thursday/Friday 11am-3pm, Saturday/ Sunday 10am-4pm; Phone 09 812 8029, 26, Titirangi U3A – meet interesting people 60-years and older; West Lynn Garden, 73 Parker Avenue, New Lynn; 1pm. Contact 818 8809, 027 699 5480 or


29, Flicks presents TBC (check for updates); Titirangi Theatre, Lopdell House, Titirangi; 10.30am, 6pm and 8.15pm; $15, $12 and $10 from and on door. Text bookings to 0210 222 5558 or phone 818 2489.

w 3, Pony Rides, Huia Road Horse Club; 436B Huia Road, Laingholm; 3-4pm; $5 per child per ride. Phone 027 499 1732.

w 31, How removing animal products from our diet makes positive change for animals, the planet and our health facilitated by Amanda Sorenson (Vegan Society) and Josh Howell (ultra-athlete); Titirangi Library, South Titirangi Road; 11am – 12pm. Visit the library’s Facebook page for updates.

w 8, West Auckland Men’s Rebus Club, guest speaker and morning tea; Friendship Hall, 3063 Great North Road, New Lynn; 10am-12noon. Phone Laurie 820 2234.

w 31, Titirangi Village Market: art, craft, produce and music; Titirangi War Memorial Hall; 10am-2pm. Contact Tess on tvm. or phone 022 631 9436.

october 1, Flicks presents TBC (check for updates); Titirangi Theatre, Lopdell House, Titirangi; 10.30am, 6pm and 8.15pm; $15, $12 and $10 from and on door. Text bookings to 0210 222 5558 or phone 818 2489.

w 8, Ladies’ Probus Club, fellowship, fun, speakers, and a monthly day trip; St John’s Hall, Te Atatū South; 9.45am-Noon. Phone Betty 09 832 0484.


w 9, Titirangi Folk Music Club presents a virtual club night; visit for details or text Cathy on 021 207 7289.


w 12, 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 gary@


w 15, Flicks presents Comino Skies (G), a community film night brought to you by the Lopdell Trust, presented by film maker Fergus Grady (Limelight Films); Titirangi Theatre, Lopdell House, Titirangi;

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18, Henderson Falls Combined Friendship Club – fun, friendship and fellowship with monthly speakers and frequent outings; Henderson Bowling Club, 2/20 Alderman Drive, Henderson; 10am-noon. Contact Fern 416 0004 or 027 472 0378.


– November 14, Marti Friedlander: Portaits of the artists, 80 novel and compelling images of creative New Zealanders from the 60s, 70s and later; Te Uru, 420 Titirangi Road. Phone 817 8070.


Event organisers:

10.30am, 6pm and 8.15pm; Free. Phone 817 2583. Check flickscinema. for details. This will only go ahead at Level 2 or lower.

The Fringe OCTOBER 2021

november November 7, Pony Rides, Huia Road Horse Club; 436B Huia Road, Laingholm; 3-4pm; $5 per child per ride. Phone 027 499 1732. November 9, 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 November 12, West Auckland Men’s Rebus Club, guest speaker and morning tea; Friendship Hall, 3063 Great North Road, New Lynn; 10am-12noon. Phone Laurie 820 2234.


Book @ or Ph 09 242 1450

Yo u r L o c a l s i n c e 1 9 2 4

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places to go

November 13, Titirangi Folk Music Club presents Celtic Ferret, floor singers in the first half; Titirangi Beach Hall, bottom of Titirangi Beach Road; 8pm; $12, $8 for members, under 18 free. or text Cathy on 021 207 7289.


November 15, Henderson Falls Combined Friendship Club – fun, friendship and fellowship with monthly speakers and frequent outings; Henderson Bowling Club, 2/20 Alderman Drive, Henderson; 10am-noon. Contact Fern 416 0004 or 027 472 0378.


November 16, SeniorNet West Auckland, speaker, morning tea and chatting about computers; RSA Henderson, Poppy Restaurant, 66-70 Railside Avenue, Henderson; 10am. Phone June 021 179 3635.


November 21, Antiques, collectables and Crafts Fair (proceeds go towards upkeep of Armanesco House); Blockhouse Bay Community Centre, 524 Blockhouse Bay Road; 9.30am-2pm; $2 entry fee. Phone 445 1227


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, visit:

l WHERE IT’S AT: • Corban Estate Arts Centre, 2 Mount Lebanon

who, what, where, when in the west...

November 12, Ladies’ Probus Club, fellowship, fun, speakers, and a monthly day trip; St John’s Hall, Te Atatū South; 9.45am-Noon. Phone Betty 09 832 0484.


Lane, Henderson; 10am-4.30pm daily. 838 4455, • EcoMatters Environment Trust, 1 Olympic Place, New Lynn; Wednesday – Sunday, 10am-2pm. 826 4276, • Flicks cinema, Titirangi Theatre, Lopdell House. 818 2489,

• Kelston Community Centre, corner of Awaroa and Great North Roads, Kelston. • McCahon House Museum, 67 Otitori Bay

Road, Titirangi; Wednesday – Sunday, 1-4pm, except public holidays. 817 6148, mccahon@ • Playhouse Theatre, 15 Glendale Road, Glen Eden. 818 5751. • Te Toi Uku – Clay Works, 8 Ambrico Place, New Lynn; Wednesday – Friday, 10am-4pm, Saturday 10am-3pm. Phone 827 7349, www.

• Te Uru Waitākere Contemporary Gallery,

420 Titirangi Road, Titirangi; Tuesday – Sunday, 10am-4.30pm. 817 8087, • Titirangi Theatre, Titirangi Theatre, Lopdell House; Titirangi. 817 5812, infoline 817 5951,

• Upstairs Gallery, Level 1, Lopdell House, 418

Titirangi Road; Tuesday – Sunday, 10am-4pm, except public holidays. 817 4278, www.upstairs.

• West Coast Gallery, Seaview Road, Piha;

Thursday/Friday, 11am-3pm; Saturday/Sunday, 10am-4pm. 812 8029, www.westcoastgallery.

402a Ti t i r a n g i Road, Ti t i r a n g i Villag e Ph : 0 9 8 1 7-9937 w w w.t o n i c s pa . c o . n z



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covid comfort cooking Toaster Cheese and Onion Scones

After over a month of living in lockdown, many of us became very proficient in the kitchen – with plenty of time to experiment and come up with new ways to stay healthy and well fed. OK. Not all our experiments worked well and, sure, we really started to wish we could have a takeaway some time! But check out these creations from local readers ... And if you’ve got an recipe to share (your own concoction, not out of a recipe book – anyone can do that, LOL ). Send it to

Chicken or Sausage Tray Bake Here we go: Just chuck everything in one tray and bung it in the oven :) .

My baking rarely rises and these scones are no exception. Apparently you can use up to 4tsp of baking powder to get them up, or crush up a bit of Viagra and throw that in, LOL. Personally, I prefer the flat scone, that way you can just pop them in the toaster briefly to warm them up. Ingredients: • 1 ½ cups flour (can do 1 cup plain white, ½ cup of wholemeal) • 2 ½ tsp baking powder • ¼ tsp salt • 50g butter (more or less) • 1 ½ cups of grated cheese • 1 small onion (red or white) finely chopped • ¼ cup of milk Process: Rub the butter into flour, salt and baking powder. Add most of the cheese and all of the onion. Stir in milk (add more or less depending on the dough). Knead lightly. Pat out to about 1cm think. Cut rounds using glass rim or whatever suits. Put any remaining cheese on top. Place on greased tray and bake for 15 minutes at around 190 degrees Celsius fan bake. Make a cup of tea and eat scones immediately. Reheat as needed for a short time in the toaster. – Andrea Holmes

Ingredients: • Onions quartered. • Garlic chopped up. • Smoky paprika or your own selection of spices, etc. • Fresh ginger cut into matchstick strips. • Butternut pumpkin cut into chunks. • Tin of haricot beans and a tin of tomatoes. • Chicken thighs, and wings, bone-in skinon. Process: Preheat oven to 190 degrees Celsius. I usually start by doing a bit of frying on the gas hob. Put onions spices, ginger, etc. into a dry frypan and on the heat to char them a bit. Then judging by smells of charring add in the oil, pumpkin, tinned beans and tinned tomatoes. Add some water, (which will evaporate) and shake it all around to mix things up. Wriggle the chicken pieces, especially the bigger bits, to be closer to the top. Add a couple of bacon slices on top of the chicken bit. Now put it into the hot oven. Note that the frypan handle also gets up to 190degC, so when you close the oven door put an oven mitt on the handle as a reminder to use something to grab the handle with. Bake for 1 hour. Version 2 – Sausages: Unwind the bit between each one and pinch the ends (to make one really long sausage), call it a Catherine wheel – it’ll cook on top. Skewer the coil with a couple of rosemary twigs, stuff herbs in the gaps and balance the coil on some steel skewers so it’s raised up off the tray/frypan. – Brian Adam

Your local MP LindaLinda Cooper Cooper Dr Deborah Russell MP for New Lynn New Lynn Electorate Office 09 820 6245 1885 Great North Rd, Avondale, Auckland

Councillor for Waitākere Councillor for Waitākere Please feel free to

Please feel free to contact me with contact me with issuesissues or ideas or ideas

021 629 533

021 629 533

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covid comfort cooking Kat and Mego’s Good Dog Treats (for pets and their people!) My dog Mego, a 13-year-young Shiba Inu, was diagnosed with back issues earlier this year. Kym the Vet noticed that Mego appeared very ‘Yin’ heavy and suggested adding foods to his diet that would warm him up. This, along with some digging down a rabbit hole into Yin and Yang philosophies, led to the creation of this recipe. Mego and I hope you love these treats as much as we do!

What you need: • 1 ½ cups jumbo rolled oats (coarsely ground, i.e. not ground to a flour). Use buckwheat or coconut flour for a gluten-free alternative. • ½ cup activated buckwheat (coarsely ground). • ½ cup quinoa flakes. • ¼ cup ground flaxseed (coarsely ground). • ¼ cup hemp seeds. • ½ cup roasted pumpkin (mashed). (Banana could be used instead.) • 2-3 tbls of tahini or peanut butter. • 1-2 tbls finely grated fresh turmeric. • 1-2 tsps finely grated fresh ginger. • Optional – Handful or two of coconut flakes, sunflower or pumpkin seeds What to do: Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celsius. Combine all the dry stuff in a large mixing bowl. Add the ginger and turmeric to the mashed pumpkin with the tahini/peanut butter and mix together. Add the pumpkin mixture to the dry mix. Smoosh it all together by hand into an epic ball of superfood dough. Dump the dough onto a cutting board. (Use eco-baking paper or some oats or buckwheat ground to a flour for non-stickiness.) Using a rolling pin (or your hands) flatten the dough out to around 0.5cm thick. Get your favourite cookie cutter (I use twinkle, twinkle little stars) and cut out the dough into about as many stars as there are in the sky. Place treats on a

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baking sheet covered with eco-baking paper and bake for around 15-20 minutes (or until they’re golden at the edge and smell super yum). Grab out of the oven and leave to cool. Time for doggie (and human) taste testing! • • •

Try not to let the mixture get too wet or it won’t crisp up in the oven You can freeze the treats for up to two months Love planet Earth – Use organic, fair trade and locally sourced ingredients where possible.

– Kat Bridges >> New

in the ’hood, Continued from page 9

Te Uru will be developing some public programmes and events so we can bring our gallery audiences into discussions and workshops to build on the ideas in these exhibitions. I’m working on an exhibition for Circuit’s 10th anniversary which will culminate in an exhibition at Te Uru in June 2022. We’ve already partnered with a great film festival in the UK and Spike Island. The exhibition and an accompanying symposium will look at how artists have used animation in their film and video work. It’ll be a fun and lively exhibition with some interactive components as well. Finally, outside of my work at Te Uru, I’m guest co-editing, with Becky Hemus, a forthcoming issue of The Art Paper – a brilliant new art magazine based in Aotearoa but with a strong readership internationally as well. The theme of this forthcoming issue is ‘touch’ and we’re excited to share it with everyone next month when it launches.

The Fringe OCTOBER 2021


our place Out West we have a wealth of local history and local stories, and we are blessed with many local individuals and writers who are passionate about researching and sharing this legacy. The next few pages are just a brief snapshot of the past we all share.

Call for Muddy Creeks’ history to see the light “It’s our story. By us. For us.” Locals with a love of history, Wayne Mackenzie and Simon Rush, are working on bringing their close community even closer and asking them to join the “Muddy Creeks History Project” writes MOIRA KENNEDY. The project is to develop a documented historical record of Little Muddy Creek, Laingholm, Big Muddy Creek, Parau and Nihotupu. The aim is to create a book, including input from locals, with a targeted launch of April 2023. Wayne was managing a Facebook page called Laingholm History when, in April this year, someone suggested all the information being gathered would make a great book. Wayne has been writing about local history for a “long, long time” and soon he and amateur historian Simon Rush connected and the project was go, go, go. Simon has an interest in preserving local stories for the next generation so the pair are a perfect combination to bring together the stories of local areas often overlooked. “Simon’s awesome, has lived in Laingholm for 10 years, and has all the publishing and IT skills needed,” says Wayne. “History in the areas we’re concentrating on hasn’t been well covered in the past, although there are numerous books on Titirangi, Waiatarua, Piha, Huia, Whatipu and generic books on the Waitākeres.” While Simon and Wayne want to change that and will act as researchers, writers and editors, they’re calling on others who know more than they do. “My history knowledge is quite extensive but it’s not everything, so we’re looking for essays – and photos – from people who know local stories better than we do. “It will be like a big jigsaw. We’re hoping for surprises and already they’re happening. We have a photo of Willie the Whale that washed FRINGEADLTD.pdf 1 15/11/16 16:33 up at the end of Kauri Point Road from the 1950s. There’s a six-year old boy in that picture

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and we think that person is still contactable, so we’ll follow that up.” It was a huge story at the time with daily newspaper, The Auckland Star, running a feature that saw traffic backed up for miles. Then there’s the tale of the Laingholm sewage main line having a truck-load of concrete dumped into it as it was being installed. It’s believed that was done by people who didn’t like what was happening. “There will be all sorts of things in a melting pot and the completed project will be a collation of all those things. Simon and I will support it all with our nuggets of information. We’ll check the facts too as sometimes people’s memories can be fickle. This is an exciting opportunity to share and learn more stories of our past,” Wayne says. Subjects of particular interest include early history, natural environment, notable residents, cultural and sporting events, interesting stories, artefacts and modern life. While the original deadline for material was the end of this month, lockdown has changed the boundaries and Simon and Wayne are open-minded about dates at this stage. If you have things to contribute contact MuddyCreekHistory@gmail. com.

Anne Maree Gardens, Rest Home & Hospital

1 9 8 9



Gant cottage, located opposite Laingholm Primary School, overlooking Parau. 1926. Photo supplied by Joan Glasse.

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our place

Boat-building in Titirangi

It was Halloween eve, 10 years after we moved into the street, that I heard mention of a shed full of old boats and nautical equipment nearby and in plain sight, writes ZOE HAWKINS. Today the Davis boat shed is romantic and mysterious. On the outside, peeling paint and weatherboards; on the inside, a time capsule of a family’s love of boating and marine craftsmanship. Two boats, a trailersailer and a small runabout, are currently stored in the shed while a third was removed recently to be finished and launched (more later). Ivy grows through the interior and, along with dust and spider webs, hides decades of old tools and materials – once the boat-builder’s tools of trade. Carol Hinton kindly let me into the boat shed one sunny Sunday afternoon. She is the daughter of Harry and Linda Davis. Harry and his twin brother Alf made up Davis Bros Boatbuilders of TItirangi. Harry, who lived in a cottage next to the boat shed, died recently and Carol (inset in top right photo) has been visiting every week to check on the shed and the house, and to mow the lawns. Carol gave me a snapshot of the family’s history. I also met with local Wayne Bishop, who grew up in the area and has lived in the same house ‘just around the corner’ for 46 years, and the younger brother of Harry and Alf, Ian Davis, currently resident in Fosters Bay, near Huia. Ian and Wayne, now in the later half of their 70s, were childhood friends, born around 11 years after Harry and Alf. They started school on the same day and grew up around the coast, sailing P-Classes, and playing in the boat shed. These days the harbour is nearly devoid of boats (except when the local sailing club is in action) but in the 1950s, the northern beaches of the Manukau Harbour, in particular French Bay and Titirangi Beach, were teeming with sail boats and boat sheds. Harry and Alf made their living from boat building, mostly clinker dinghies and runabouts, but the shed itself was built to accommodate a 36-foot keeler called Sojourn. Her transom touched the back of the shed, and her bow the front, and she was magnificent. Sojourn was to take them to the islands – a dream that was sadly never achieved as Alf fell ill, Harry was unable to continue by

himself and the boat was sold. Sojourn, like other boats the brothers built, was made from kauri sourced from the local area including their back garden. Younger brother Ian remembers kauri being felled from behind a cottage about 1km away and trucked to the shed. (Today, kauri is highly protected in Titirangi.) Wayne, himself a lover of classic cars, tells of the day the brothers bought a 1930s car (Ian says it was an Oakland Automobile from America they found for sale in Mt Albert), jacked it up, took the wheels off, attached a fly wheel to another fly wheel, and started the motor to drive a blade that turned timber into planks. Ian says that remnants of his brothers’ planing machine are still in the grass outside the shed. The Davis Boatshed was thriving for a period. The family loved being on and around the water and sailed the full range of traditional New Zealand classes from P-Classes to Idle Alongs (two of which they kept at Westhaven, sailing with the Ponsonby Cruising Club) to mullet boats. An 18-foot mullet boat, Reremai, was bought by H & A Davis of Tanekaha Road, Titirangi, in 1953. Ian says that his big brothers built the first plywood P-Class at French Bay Yacht Club in 1956, a boat that was much lighter than others, and which featured a track up the top of the mast. It was named Springbok because it was the year that the Springboks toured New Zealand. Carol says that her father met her mother, Linda, at FBYC. The trailersailer still in the shed today is named Atlas II and was owned by Harry’s good friend Howard McDonald, a keen sailor who lived nearby. When Howard fell ill, Harry took on the project. Ian says that Harry’s craftsmanship was remarkable and the woodwork on Atlas II is testament to that. Even at the age of 80 he laminated two new fin keels, making moulds for the lead, pouring it, and managing to bolt one on. While Carol honours her father and uncle by caring for their shed and its contents, Ian recently took the third of the small runabouts to his cottage in Huia. There he has finished the boat, equipped it with a new trailer and outboard, and is looking forward to summer outings. His brothers will be watching, and, I think, smiling in approval. Do you know the whereabouts of Sojourn or any other Davis Bros Boatbuilders boats? Please let us know.

You Shop We Deliver

An earlier version of this article first appeared in Boating New Zealand.

Shopping delivered to your door

Titirangi Supermarket 429 Titirangi Rd, Auckland, 0604

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The Fringe OCTOBER 2021


our place

Titirangi Soldiers’ Memorial Church nears 100 years Titirangi Soldiers’ Memorial Church in Park Road is one of our area’s significant buildings. It was granted heritage status by Waitākere City Council in 1996, writes FIONA DRUMMOND. The church is one of only two churches in New Zealand that were planned to be memorials to soldiers lost in World War I. It may have been inspired by the South Titirangi war memorial that Henry Atkinson erected in 1917 to acknowledge all locals who served during the war. Back at this time, Park Road was the primary access to Titirangi, a pleasant fern-lined bush drive with extensive views to the Manukau. Imagine being greeted by this pretty church with its rustic fence, and a cuppa at Park Road Kiosk, now Tobys, on the fringe of the beautiful Atkinson Park. It was Mrs Emily Bishop who is credited with the suggestion that the church be an “undenominational” soldiers’ memorial church, recognising that the fallen soldiers from Titirangi (including her own two sons) were not all from one denomination. A trust board with equal numbers of Anglicans and Presbyterians was formed in 1922. The zealous ladies from the church committee met to brainstorm ways to gather funds for the church and three garden fêtes raised £450 towards the project. One of the later garden fêtes exhibited sample pews to solicit donations from the community. Other funding was raised through concerts, bush and beach carnivals and garden parties. Nelson Hawkins gifted two subdivision sections (from his new Ferndell Estate, fronting both Park and South Titirangi Roads) to be the land for the church.

The six-month anniversary of the opening of the Soldiers Memorial Church 18-11-1924. © Auckland Libraries Heritage Collections JTD-10A-05413

Further generosity came from architect Herbert Clinton Savage who wrote to the committee in 1922 offering his services to design the church which was to seat 100 people, an offer which was accepted. (He was also the architect behind the now demolished brick St Andrews Presbyterian Church in Margan Avenue, New Lynn.) Fifty years later, at the 1974 anniversary of the church, a Mr Souster was named as architect, a discrepancy that remains a mystery to this day, Local builder Harry Jenkin did the timber framing and interior finishing of the church while the stone mason was Mr Kershaw. He compacted scoria concrete into steel moulds to create the concrete blocks at the Kershaw Bros yard in Mayville Street in New Lynn. He also cast custom curved blocks for the windows. He then laid the blocks which form the structure of the church. (The use of hollow concrete blocks had begun around 1904 in New Zealand and, although their use had become less popular by the end of World War I, they were used for bungalows in Auckland at this time.) Governor-General Lord Jellicoe opened the church on Sunday, May 18 1924, to a large audience of dignitaries, returned servicemen, visitors from the city and the local community with the musical accompaniment


The Fringe OCTOBER 2021

of the Temperance Guards’ Band. The first interdenominational service took place that same evening. The cost of the church construction by opening day was around £850 but with £730 already in hand, thanks to years of galas and fundraising, the church was debt-free by December 1929. On April 18, 1926, Governor-General Sir Charles Fergusson unveiled a black granite tablet bearing the names of 13 local men who had lost their lives in the First World War and a further tablet was added a year later, courtesy of the Kershaw Bros, to recognise those who died at home as a result of war service. 1927 also saw the laying of a concrete block path and the construction of rustic style fencing. Native trees and ferns were planted to enhance the grounds in 1931. The original Marseilles tiled roof has been replaced with the tiles imported from the original supplier in Australia. Some repairs were undertaken in 2003 and other alterations over the years have included a double door entrance for ease of access and changes to the interior to improve the lighting. An Anglican parochial district covering New Lynn, Glen Eden, Titirangi, Laingholm and Huia was established in New Lynn during 1927. Anglican services were held at the church once a fortnight, celebrated by a curate from New Lynn, while the Presbyterian minister from Avondale conducted services on alternate Sundays. Both congregations went to all services. The Presbyterians talked about “Our Anglican Minister” and likewise the Anglicans would say “Our Presbyterian Minister”. Architect J. Park drew up plans for a new gateway to the church in which to install the first bell, imported from England and sponsored by J. Burns & Co. A dedication service was conducted in May 1940 by Reverend Bedford. Mrs Emily Bishop was given the honour of being the first to ring the bell but the electrician installing the underground wiring for it was ironically called up to the army the day before so the bell ringing didn’t take place. The bell was stolen in 2006 and was replaced at considerable cost with a smaller one, cast by Bettacast Foundry in Avondale. Hotel Titirangi (1930-1939) was an ideal reception venue for weddings in the early days of the church and, later, the Toby Jug next door made an ideal church and reception combo for those who wanted an entirely Titirangi wedding. (The Toby Jug had also opened in 1924 but was just a tea kiosk at this time.) The church was shared by the Anglicans and the Presbyterians until they both outgrew the space and moved to their present sites in the 1980s – St Francis Anglican Church at 96 Park Road and the Titirangi Presbyterian Church at 234 Atkinson Road. Since 1991, the Traditional Anglican Communion has held a regular Sunday morning service in the church while the Community of St Columba holds monthly Celtic, Christian and Contemplative services. In 1999, the church was further dedicated to locals who lost their lives in conflicts after World War I. The church has long been a popular venue for weddings, funerals and other events and meetings. My own parents chose the church for their wedding in 1958. [The editor’s parents were also married there, in 1954.] To enquire about hiring the venue, contact Beryl Sweeting at Early members of our community contributed to this unique building, and current church trustees would welcome assistance from today’s Titirangi community to remember them, and the locals who lost their lives in war and conflict, and to ensure that the building survives. Financial support through donations or use of the church would be welcome but you might also consider organising a working bee or helping to plan the 100 year anniversary in 2024. To get involved, contact Don Anton at

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our place

Titirangi Beach general store and tearooms From 1929 to 1975, a general store at 2 Mahoe Road, Titirangi, catered for day trippers, weekenders, and residents at the very popular Atkinson Park. This was a prime location, being almost on Titirangi Beach, writes LYNETTE SOLLITT-MORRIS. The store, or ‘The Beach Kiosk’ as it was known in the early days was opened by the Boyd family, and later owned for short periods by the Brights, a Mr Hall, the Clarkins, the Cunninghams and the Cooks. The three sets of owners who owned and operated the shop for periods of over 10 years each made quite an impact on the local community: Albert and Kathleen Davies (1936-1947); Mary and Frederick Landers (1948-1960); and Joyce and Bill Daniels (19651975). The shop was an important conduit of information, company and local gossip. Business was brisk and profitable during the summer months especially in ice creams and soft drinks but slow during the long winter so owners developed a number of other means to add extra income. The shop sold general goods to the small resident and weekender population who often shopped daily in the days before most people owned fridges and cars. Hot water, boiled on gas rings before electricity was installed at the beach, was sold to park visitors who would bring up their tea pots to be filled in the days before the thermos. A small camp site large enough for about three pitches was operating at the back of the shop in the 1930s and a small flat was built underneath the main shop building on the left hand side and later, another single room with no facilities was added on the right hand corner of the building. These were rented out as holiday accommodation for visitors to the popular ‘resort’. There was also a small, very basic one-roomed bach with a veranda built behind the shop sometime in the 30s that was also rented out over the years as holiday and semi-permanent accommodation. It was demolished in the mid 60s. The Beach Kiosk also served the small residential and weekender community as their hall, where the community would gather on a Saturday night for dances and at other times for meetings and community concerts, before the present hall was opened in 1961. A tearoom offering meals and afternoon teas operated in the cavernous building. It was very popular with the American soldiers stationed in Auckland during the Second World War. By the beginning of the 1960s, the shop had been renamed ‘The Fishnet Tearooms’ and the tearoom walls were decorated with fishing nets and raffia-covered Italian wine bottles. There were six kauri tables with four chairs to each to seat patrons and teas were served in good quality stainless steel teapot sets.

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The original kiosk, a small stall about 12 feet by 8 feet, was built right on the beach in the early 20s by Alec Bishop. It was situated in front of the site of the present hall on the large eastern picnic ground known locally as the ‘green’. The ownership and licence to operate were then held by successive shop owners. The kiosk sold ice creams, ice blocks and other goods such as potato chips, soft drinks and confectionery and was only opened in the summer on the weekend and on picnic days. This kiosk was demolished about 1966. Shopping was quite a different experience prior to the late 60s. Goods were held behind the counter and were handed to the customer as requested. Few products were prepackaged and the shop owner would, as Joyce Daniels recalled, for instance, slice a few rashers off the bone for the customer and then wrap them up, usually in plain newsprint. When the Daniels, the last owners, bought the shop, the counter was close to the shop entrance. They later reversed the counter to the other end of the room, closed the tearooms and placed many of the goods on shelves where customers could select the ones they wanted – more like today’s shopping experience. By the 70s the world was changing. More people had cars, the supermarkets at Titirangi and Kelston had opened, LynnMall was well established and people were able to shop and travel further afield. In addition, most people had fridges and home freezers and could store food safely for longer periods of time. The shop was no longer profitable and was closed in 1975.

Thanks to the Daniels family (Joyce, Greg, and Vicki) for permission to publish these photos. Top left: The old shop from the street before the mid 60s renovations. The door and window to the old apartment (bottom right) and the small rented room on the left underneath the shop are visible. The large window on the top storey facing the street marks the site of the tearoom. Bottom left: Pipe band members outside the original kiosk one sunny weekend after a performance on the beach Top right: Joyce and Bill Daniels in the original shop area near the shop entrance. Mid right: Inside the old tearooms. Bottom right: Vicki and Greg Daniels outside the old bach at the rear of shop.

More details on the Titirangi Beach store and the history of Titirangi Beach and Atkinson Park can be found in Atkinson Park and Life at Paturoa Bay: 1910-1980 by Lynnette Sollitt-Morris. Copies can be bought directly from the author for $45. Email

The Fringe OCTOBER 2021


sustainable solutions with fiona drummond

Living lighter on the planet

With our current climate emergency we should all find out what our carbon footprint is and how to reduce it. Auckland Council offers a tool to help: The survey on this web page provides a snapshot of your footprint and how it compares to the rest of New Zealand or around the world. I was a little shocked and disappointed to find that despite driving an electric vehicle and cycling to work, dealing responsibly with food waste, using an effective source of heating and being a minimal user of air travel, I still have a carbon footprint well above the estimated New Zealand average, albeit less than the world average. Let’s take a look at some of the areas the survey focuses on:

Diet/Sourcing Food/Food Waste

Being a meat eater was by far the biggest factor in my carbon footprint. Redoing the survey as a vegetarian brought my footprint down to the national average. A conscious decision to limit or eliminate red meat will have a huge impact on our footprint. Growing your own food, working with a community garden, sourcing food locally and eating food in season helps support local communities and reduces the energy used in food miles. With the average New Zealand family wasting $560 per year on food that’s bought but never eaten, cutting down on food waste is also a win for your pocket, and the planet. Search out Love Food, Hate Waste for inspiration and discover their online seasonal cookbook Easy Choice Family Kai with meal plans for four weeks. Composting using a bokashi bucket, worm bin or compost bin is the best way to deal with food waste. Compost Collective organises workshops and provides instructions on how to compost effectively.

Commuting and travel

Staying at home is a kindness to our environment as far as air pollution is concerned, with less fuel pollution entering the atmosphere, so let’s just all work from home. This won’t work for everyone but has become a new normal for many companies who have found it quite effective. This was an area of the survey where I ranked best, owning an electric vehicle and making cycling part of my weekly commute. Start saving money and see some quick health benefits by using your car less – even one day less makes a big impact. Public transport, carpooling, cycling or walking can reduce your carbon footprint in a big way. Take advantage of the Clean Car Discount while it’s on offer. It provides rebates of $8625 for a new and $3450 for a used import light electric vehicle (less for a hybrid) until December 2021. From January 1, 2022, this discount will be based on the CO2 emissions

of vehicles. See clean-car-discount/eligibility-criteria/. Air travel is one of the biggest contributors to our carbon emissions. When you have to take a flight, offsetting your emissions is a good option. Greening up your backyard, community or shared space not only helps improve local biodiversity and encourages more native species to thrive, it also helps to offset your unavoidable emissions.


The way you heat your water and your house has a major effect on your footprint. If you have a log burner or pot belly stove, add a wetback to heat water. Solar panels can also heat water. Inexpensive changes to your shower head and taking shorter showers to reduce water consumption will also reduce power use and save money. Home insulation limits power use and makes for a healthier home environment. Your use of lighting and appliances can amount to around a third of your power bill, or double that during winter when heating your home, so it’s important to make them eco-friendly. On winter mornings and evenings grid electricity has a higher mix of fossilfuel generation, so being energy efficient with lighting and heating makes a big difference to the planet and your wallet. If you’re living in a damp, cold house or paying too much for power, check your home's insulation. The Home Energy Audit Toolkit (HEAT kit) is available free of charge from your local library with your Auckland Libraries membership. Reserve one by searching HEAT KIT on the library site. HEAT kits can help you find out: • which areas of your home use the most energy • how you can make your home healthier and warmer • how you can save on power bills and reduce your carbon footprint You could also see if your home can satisfy healthy home standards by using the free HomeFit online check at

Shop Responsibly

Consider whether you really need the latest gadget or fashion, whether an existing item could do the job, or whether second-hand might be a better option. This is one of the easiest ways to save serious money and prevent the waste of many usable or repairable things you already own. And don’t forget our kids and grandkids. Our children will inherit our compromised planet. Introduce them to the eco-friendly activities that they might enjoy at

Despite the recent disruptions The Fringe is still building up to Christmas and the holiday season. We will be giving advertisers the opportunity to profile gift ideas and the products and services that our tens of thousands of local readers need. Editorial space and discount rates will be available to participating advertisers (conditions apply). Have you ever thought you could be a good writer? The Fringe is always interested in hearing from those who have articles to share ... Feel free to get in touch. The booking deadline for advertising and editorial submissions in our November issue is October 15 with artwork due by October 19. Please get in touch as soon as possible. Contact us at


The Fringe OCTOBER 2021

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naturally west with fiona drummond

Steve Kerr.

Kōwhai heralds sunnier days

Our native kōwhai (sophora) in flower is always a welcome site, especially this year as we escape the captivity of extended lockdowns. Kōwhai means yellow in Māori and the flowers are the happy colour of sunshine, heralding the promise of longer, brighter days. Kōwhai coming into flower traditionally signalled kūmara planting time and the time to harvest kina for Māori. There are eight varieties of sophora, but the one that grows naturally in the Waitākere Ranges is sophora fulvida, an at risk species and not that common. Sophora is actually part of the pea family (fabaceae) which also includes gorse, broom and kakabeak. Due to its colour and pretty leaves, kōwhai is unofficially considered our national flower/tree, alongside the pōhutukawa, and has been used as an icon for brands and items such as stamps and coins since our country’s earliest days. Kōwhai attract kererū, which delight in the tender new leaves, as well as the buttery flowers – to my annoyance as their greed can rob us of the enjoyment of the kōwhai in bloom. Tūī also love kōwhai but for its nectar and dozens of tūī will compete for their nectar fix in season. In addition to the damage caused by kererū, kōwhai are often attacked by caterpillars of the native kowhai moth (left). The caterpillars can strip off every leaf then either pupate and turn into moths and fly away, or die of starvation. For control of the kōwhai caterpillar, you can: • Lay a sheet under the tree, and pick them off or shake your tree and the caterpillars will fall off onto the sheet. • Spray with a homemade chilli spray • Spray with natural neem oil, although this is toxic to bees so only spray after dusk. For humans, kōwhai is both poisonous and medicinal. It has traditional healing properties for treating skin problems, wounds, diseases and even broken bones. No part of the plant can be consumed, however, as it contains a toxin known as cytisine, something that kererū clearly aren’t affected by. With its toxicity common knowledge today, you rarely find kōwhai planted in school grounds, though they are widely evident in parks and gardens. Kōwhai wood, one of New Zealand’s strongest hardwoods was an important, tough, dense and durable timber resource for both Māori

and European, and was used for tools, machinery, house piles, cabinets, sleepers, fencing and ship building. The flexible branches were also used by Māori for bird snares and roots were used for fish hooks. The flowers, seed pods, twigs and bark were all used to create yellow dyes. Kōwhai is present in Māori tradition and song. Te ura o te kōwhai (the glow of the kōwhai) is a Sophora fulvida in full bloom. common expression and the mystical Kōwhai-turanga ora” or Tree of Life, in the legends of the Waikato people, refers to the authority and powers held by people to whom they look to for help and life. Because its bright yellow flowers drew the attention of the first visitors to New Zealand, seed was taken to many places in the world. The Kew Royal Botanic Gardens botanist Joseph Banks (on Captain Cook’s 1768-1771 voyage) took kōwhai seed back to Kew where it was grown from about 1772. Flowering trees were recorded in London in 1779 and in Ireland in 1800. To grow kōwhai in your own garden, choose the Waitākere species, sophora fulvida. This will help an at risk species and is likely to give you the best results. It is available from Gordons Nurseries on Scenic Drive. Kōwhai prefers fertile, well-draining soils and positioning in full sun or partial shade. It is hardy and reasonably drought-tolerant but requires some wind protection when young.

weather by the moon Ken Ring’s predictions for October October may be much wetter than average, cloudier and with lower temperatures than normal. The first week is the sunniest and the warmest, the second week may be the wettest with lowest atmospheric pressures, the fourth week should have the lowest overnight temperatures, and the last week may have the highest pressures. The barometer should average about 1015mbs. Most rain may be around the 22nd. The 30th/31st could be the best weekend for outdoor activities. For fishermen, the highest tides are around the 8th. The best fishing bite-times in the West are around noon on the 4th-6th, and 18th-21st. Chances are also good for around dusk of the 11th-13th and 26th-28th. For gardeners, planting is best between the 7th and 12th (waxing moon ascending), and pruning is best between the 22nd and 26th (waning moon descending). For preserving and longer shelf-life, pick crops or flowers on neap tide days of the 14th and 30th. Always allow 24 hour error for all forecasting. For future weather for any date, visit © Ken Ring 2021.

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The Fringe OCTOBER 2021


live @ the lounge

Covid entrepreneurs

‘I’ll set up on some of that unused roadside land in Glen Eden. Sure I’ll have to move every couple of hours when a cyclist rides by but that’s cool.’

Yeah gidday. How’s y’all going? Man, how cool were those Olympics? Awesome! Gave me an excuse to switch on the telly during the day. Made me a bit body-conscious but. All those athletic types. Like when I pulled on me favourite hoodie the other morning, the one that, get this, instead of saying Jack Daniels, says Dak Granules. Classic Chrissy pressie. It fitted quite well until I had a few over lunch. Then I looked like I could enter the S13 Paralympics 100m dash for men over 60 with a visually impaired S16 woman shoved up my jumper. Moving on ... Chardonella and her bloke Eduardo have moved back into our bubble. We thought our daughter was finally going-it on her own but what’s a dad to do? She was renting a bedsit in Dorothy Place but felt it was too small for her, Eduardo and our grandchild. “Dad, I’m nearly in my 30s and don’t see why you and Mum should have to pay my rent out of your sickness benefit when I’m perfectly able to get my own.” I was actually quite proud of her. She had done quite a lot with her life. Had a child. Finished fifth form. Paid off the Falcon ute and still has points left on her licence. “I love being back with you and Mum, Dad. You have such a great relationship.” It’s true. We have reached a comfortable place with each other. Hell, I’d take a bullet for Shaz, partly because she once took a bullet for me. Well, from me. I was cleaning my rifle and accidentally shot off one of her toes. The one that goes, wee, wee, wee, wee, all the way home. “I’m actually starting up a business Dad, and was hoping to set up a space in the lean-to.” “What sort of business?” I asked. “It’s lingerie. I’ve made a bra and panties out of Covid masks. I’m going to sell them as a three piece set. If I can borrow your trestle table I’ll set up on some of that unused roadside land in Glen Eden. Sure I’ll have

to move every couple of hours when a cyclist rides by, but that’s cool. It’s even seen as an ‘essential business’ because, with every set you buy you get a free matching mask.” “Wow, that sounds like a bloody good idea girl. What would you call them?” “That’s the tricky bit. I was going to say Covid. We’ve got you covered but nah. Then I read about that Victoria Secrets online stuff and thought I’d call mine: Euphoria’s C Cups. Whattaya think? Mum thinks they’ll be essentially really beautiful actually.” Brilliant is what I thought. Really clever. Count me in. Well, moving on a few weeks, and mother and child have the Berninas sewing furiously in the lean-to. They have even taken on a staff member. A lady from Chile who had slipped into the Manukau Harbour on a yacht and kind of never left. She’s had all the shots and tests and the like. It’s nice having a positive buzz about the place. I guess belief essentially comes from longing and we’re longing to believe. On a personal note and a bit off track, I’m struggling to say goodbye to the comic genius Sean Lock. When Jimmy Carr asked what the dictionary would say if you looked him up in the dictionary, Sean said: “If you looked me up in the dictionary you’d get a fourlettered word. It’s got a ‘C’ in it, a ‘U’ in it and a ’T’ in it. That word of course is CUTE. “Really, I don’t think the dictionary has enough words to describe me. I’m so complicated. Like a sensation really. More of an idea. The way to describe me is a fragrance. When you smell it you say, ah, Sean Lock. It’d be like hot tarmac in a vet’s flannel.” Rest in peace Sean Lock and thank you. Later, Lizard.

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The Trusts

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The Fringe, October 2021  


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