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OUR COROMANDEL 2018-2019

OUR

2018-2019

COROMANDEL

MAGAZINE Fishing in paradise Explore recreational fishing clubs, charters and competitions.

Environment initiatives we love From kiwi care to harbour clean-ups, be inspired by the hard-working groups looking after our place.

Walks of life Thames-Coromandel District Council

Our parks and reserves team share their favourite local walking tracks.

The Coromandel - Good for your soul

Concerts, festivals, arts, adventure races and more‌ Find out what’s on offer for the next 12 months.


Cooks Beach

Coromandel

Hahei

Matarangi

Ngatea

33 Captain Cook Road

151 Kapanga Road

3 Grange Road

Shopping Centre

33 Orchard Road

07 866 5826

07 866 8900

07 866 3781

07 866 0322

07 867 7800

Paeroa

Pauanui

Tairua

Thames

Whitianga

54 Belmont Road

Shopping Centre

230 Main Road

556 Pollen Street

81 Albert Street

07 862 7888

07 864 8607

07 864 8968

07 868 6978

07 866 2373


The majority of Our Coromandel is produced in-house by the communications and marketing department of the Thames-Coromandel District Council. Meet the team: LAURNA WHITE. Laurna White is TCDC’s Communications and Economic

Development Group Manager. Laurna’s been with Council for the past six years after leaving a career in TV, radio and newspapers to move to the Coromandel with her husband and young family. While leaving the big smoke of Auckland for the small village of Kuaotunu was a real seachange, Laurna says she has no regrets on the decision and the learnings on rural life, which, down the line, could be the basis for a book.

GEORGINA BOND. Georgina is part of our Council’s marketing and

communications team and joined us in early 2018 from Auckland where she was the media relations manager for ASB Bank. She is a former business journalist with the National Business Review and New Zealand Herald. Georgina now lives in Pauanui where she’s enjoying coastal living, a vibrant community and opportunities for mountain biking and water sports on the doorstep.

AMBER BAKER. Amber is our Council’s Digital Communications and

Marketing Assistant and if you follow us on Facebook and Instagram, you will often be interacting with her in the virtual world. Before joining our Council and moving to Whangamata two years ago, Amber worked as a social worker at Oranga Tamariki in the Wairarapa. Amber is one of our many staff at TCDC who has enjoyed her lifestyle change and discovering all that the Coromandel has to offer, especially fishing. Check out her experience in the Fish ‘n Chicks competition on page 26.

MICHAEL DOBIE. Michael Dobie is our Senior Communications Officer.

Michael has called the Coromandel home for the last six years after an 18-year career in journalism that took him from Canada to China to the UK and finally to New Zealand. He’s a media all-rounder with experience in broadcasting, print and digital. When not at work, he enjoys spending time with his family, exploring the Coromandel, gardening and doing this and that here and there.

CONTRIBUTORS NICOLA MARTIN. When she’s not chasing her three busy daughters, Nicola

Martin can usually be found testing out recipes from all over the world in her Matarangi kitchen. The freelance writer and communications manager moved to Matarangi in 2017 and can be found blogging at www.worldtable.co.nz, where she’s also just written a cookbook that tells the stories of refugees and immigrants through their food. nicola.boyes@gmail.com

NICOLE CROFSKEY. Nicole is a researcher and producer for a television

production company. She also enjoys freelance writing and the privilege of telling people’s stories that these areas of work offer. Her greatest joy is her six-year-old daughter. For fun you can usually find her cooking up a storm. Other hobbies include photography and socialising. nicolewd77@gmail.com

LEE GILLILAND. Lee is a Coromandel-based news journalist who is

currently specialising in commercial content creation for news website stuff.co.nz. She’s a former editorial features supervisor for the Waikato Times and editor of the Hauraki Herald. Lee lives in Mercury Bay and was the owner/host of Bay Adventures Bed & Breakfast where she loved helping travellers make the most of their stay. By the sounds of the visitors’ book, she did a pretty good job. leegilliland61@gmail.com

TRUDI SHERIDAN. Former Hamiltonian Trudi Sheridan swapped London

for a tiny town on the Thames Coast, after more than a decade overseas. She loves the view of the Firth of Thames, being surrounded by pōhutukawa trees, and discovering more of the Coromandel and Waikato. She still gets a kick out of the fact the locals in her area say “hello” to each other, after spending 11 years learning to avoid eye contact on the Tube. trudiwords@gmail.com

SHAUN FAY. Shaun Fay is an award-winning copywriter of more than 30

years. He now runs his trans-Tasman marketing agency from Whangamata. As well as busy days with his commercial clients, he loves writing about what makes this part of the world so special. shaun@besidetheseaside.co.nz

FELICITY JEAN WITTERS PHOTOGRAPHER (FLEA). Felicity Jean is an

Welcome To Our Coromandel 2018-2019.

Creating this annual magazine is a pleasure for our team as we explore and share the joy of the people, lifestyles, natural beauty and events that make the Coromandel a great place to live, work and play in every season. Whether you’re a resident or among the nearly 60 per cent of our ratepayers who don’t live here full-time, we all share tremendous love and pride for our special place in the world. For our Council, 2018 has been a busy year with plenty of projects on-the-go. The Long Term Plan, which maps our priorities for the next 10 years, was a major focus and we were thrilled with the level of public feedback we received. Our Council is serious about creating vibrant, strong communities and stimulating economic development. So it’s heartening our Thames-Coromandel economy continues to grow at a rate that’s outpacing the wider Waikato region and New Zealand as a whole. And as our economy thrives, so does our visitor industry. Gone are the days when peak season was just a few weeks over summer. Businesses tell us the ‘peak’ now stretches from October through to March. This ‘shoulder season’ growth is a mark of success for our regional tourism organisation Destination Coromandel and we catch up with them inside to hear about exciting new activities and ways for people to experience the Coromandel. One thing’s for sure – people here love to fish. Our waters offer some of the most enjoyable fishing experiences you’ll find and we’ve prepared a special feature on the recreational fishing clubs, charters, competitions and characters across our district. Hardly a weekend goes by when there’s nothing on the calendar and exciting, quality events are making the Coromandel a year-round destination. Coming up, an event of national significance is the Tuia Encounters – 250 commemoration in October 2019, which will see Mercury Bay play a big role as the site of one of the first encounters between Europeans and Maori 250 years ago. Find out more on pages 112-113. And there’s plenty more inside: property, heritage, arts, walks, environment initiatives and profiles of inspiring people in our communities. Enjoy the read. The TCDC Communications Team Thanks to our advertisers: Coastwood Homes, Richardsons Real Estate Group, LJ Hooker, GJ Gardner, Whangamata Ocean Sports Club, Harcourts Coromandel Beaches, Dive Zone, Tairua Marina, Harcourts Pauanui, Hopper Developments, Grand Mercure Puka Park, Coromandel More FM, GBD Thames, Rennie Cox Lawyers, Pak’N Save Thames, Pamper Me, Driving Creek Railway, Coromandel Adventures, Platinum Homes, Fairview Windows, Santa Fe Shutters, NZ Motor Caravan Association, Fagans Whitianga, Bayleys, House of Knives, TotalSpan, Coastal Bins, Just Cabins, Whangamata Real Estate, Wharekaho, Jennian Homes, Voyager Trailers, Richmond Villas, Waikato Regional Council, Coromandel Marine Farmers Association, Versatile Garages and Homes. Our Coromandel also supports free advertising for: St John, Coromandel Rescue Helicopter Trust, Surf Lifesaving NZ, Safer Coromandel, Coastguard, Destination Coromandel and advertising of events and festivals in our events section (pages 94 to 103).

experienced and creative Coromandel photographer offering contemporary wedding, portrait, adventure travel and event photography here and around the country. Flea’s exciting career in photography started 15 years ago while she was working in the tourism industry. She lives in Kuaotunu and provided the cover photo for this year’s Our Coromandel magazine. Fleaphotos.co.nz

Our Coromandel is an annual publication produced by Thames-Coromandel District Council.

MELISSA MCGREGOR. Based on the Coromandel Peninsula, Melissa is a

• For advertising information contact Warren Male: warren@emale.me

graphic designer and owner of ModoDesign. Melissa has over 20 years in the creative industries and is passionate about communication through design. She is privileged to work alongside great clients and creative collaborators on a wide variety of projects. Melissa loves the ocean and nature, her family, cups of tea and adventure. melissa@mododesign.co.nz

• D esign and creative by Melissa McGregor, ModoDesign: melissa@mododesign.co.nz • Printed by PMP Limited: enquiries@pmplimited.co.nz • Editorial contact: communications@tcdc.govt.nz Cover photo: Our cover photo was taken by Felicity Jean Photography – Fleaphotos.co.nz A special thanks to Carl Muir Fishing for having us aboard ‘Provider’ for the photo shoot.


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60-63 44

108 -111

146-153


Contents FEATURES

66-73 76-87

9-19

Looking out for local – find out about projects going on in your neighbourhood

22-33

Fishing paradise – clubs, competitions, charters and adventures

34-35

Catch a wave with local surf schools

38-39

Golf getaway Coromandel

50–51

Championing our economy – our CEO shares his vision

60-63

Walks of life – Our parks and reserves team take us on their favourite local walks

66-73

Industry profile – Our tourism industry’s mark of success and new ways to experience the Coromandel

76-87

Landmark homes and baches

89-91

Building and planning information

93-103 Events 108-111 Heritage 120–123

Head students from around the district share their future

126–135

Environment

146-153

Arts – a small selection of our talented local artists

STORIES

128

93-103

4-5

Mayor Sandra Goudie’s year in review

40-41

Off the beaten track at Tangiaro Retreat

44-45

The Lost Spring resort’s expansion plans

46

World-class sailor takes helm of Whitianga ferry service

56

Food for your soul – local artisan food producers delight at the Food Show

104-105

Meet the couple behind the iconic Coroglen Tavern

112-113

Coromandel the place for 2020 historic commemoration

116-117

The Colville Project – a community vision takes shape

124

Digital detoxing on Slipper Island

136-137

Protecting our coast – meet our new coastal engineer

154-155

Motorsport legend who calls Pauanui home

158-159

Civil Defence – Thames Coast communities respond to the January 2018 storm

EXTRAS 8

Your Councillors

53

Broadband update

138

District Plan information

140-141

Major decisions planning our next 10 years

142

Growing with the flow – mapping our water services

162

Dogs – simple rules for when sharing our beaches and public places

163

Elections 2019 – what you need to know

164

Pool news

165

Library news

168-169

Kerbside collection information

170

Tips to keep our waterways clean


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Your Councillors Sally Christie

Jan Bartley

“I’m proud the lights are on most nights in the Jack McLean Community Recreation Centre; people are participating and connecting and that’s fantastic. I’m also proud Thames has embarked on a Thames Business Association. We need a vibrant business sector in Thames and its surrounds so that we can all thrive and young people have opportunities for employment. I want to acknowledge this Council’s progress in worthwhile conversations about the hazards produced by climate change, so that we get winwin results as much as possible.” sally.christie@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

“I feel social, economic, environmental and cultural values remain the foundation of Local Government. Representing the views and best interests of all residents, ratepayers and visitors to our region motivates my actions. Since my election as a Councillor in 2007 I have been advocating for the sealing of Wentworth Valley Road and am pleased it has now been approved under the LTP. My support for retirement village residents with ‘licence to occupy’ status has also been successful as the Rates Rebate Amendment Bill was passed by Parliament.” jan.bartley@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

THAMES COUNCILLOR

Rex Simpson

THAMES COUNCILLOR

“I’m proud the Long Term Plan (LTP) process was so robust, engagement from the public was great and we arrived at positive decisions. The LTP consultation means we can focus on the work we need to do around climate change and the Coastal Management Strategy. I’m really pleased with the Jack McLean Community Recreation Centre and seeing it well used.” rex.simpson@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Strat Peters

THAMES COUNCILLOR

“I’m pleased with the opening of the Jack McLean Community Recreation Centre, after having been involved from the initial concept with a local community group back in 2004 and continuing that involvement to completion. I’ve been lobbying for a Thames business coordinator role for the past few years, so I’m really happy to see the new Thames Business Association up and running and hiring a manager.” strat.peters@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Tony Brljevich

DEPUTY MAYOR AND COROMANDEL-COLVILLE COUNCILLOR

“It has been a satisfying year as I see projects that have been conceived and planned for years taking shape. The Whitianga town centre upgrade and the Jack McLean Community Recreation Centre in Thames come to mind. Being part of a forward-thinking team that is passionate about serving our communities is rewarding. It takes a team effort to balance wants, needs and costs. In Coromandel we’ve just completed the Barry Brickell Memorial Stage and the town streetscape plan; Hannaford’s Wharf has improvements and the sealing of the road at Te Kouma was approved for 2018, while the Citizens Hall restoration project is to begin in early 2019.” tony.brljevich@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

SOUTH EASTERN WARD COUNCILLOR

Terry Walker

SOUTH EASTERN WARD COUNCILLOR

“It’s great to see Whangamata being voted ‘Best Beach’ and Beach Hop ‘Best Event’ for New Zealand this year, and I am in support of rebranding Whangamata, Tairua and Pauanui to ‘Paradise Coast’. Flooding from weather events has to be front-of-mind for our Council and Waikato Regional Council as we work to ensure our communities can meet these challenges. Managing coastal erosion across the district is now part of a district-wide workstream. The launch of the Creative Coromandel Trust to advance our Council’s Arts Strategy, will assist with connecting artists throughout the Coromandel who provide a wide variety of key attractions.” terry.walker@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Tony Fox

MERCURY BAY COUNCILLOR

“The past 12 months have been particularly rewarding, with the LTP and Whitianga town centre upgrade being major pieces of work. Our Council staff need commending for the LTP – information provided to assist the consultation process was excellent. It is also worth noting the engagement and effort our communities put in to this process, helping deliver an excellent plan for our future. The Mercury Bay Multi Sport Park is now very well used and can boast some of the best playing surfaces in our district.” tony.fox@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Murray McLean

MERCURY BAY COUNCILLOR

“The LTP will help progress the development of some projects within Mercury Bay over the next 10 years, including looking at Hahei and Simpsons Beach/Wharekaho to connect them into our water and wastewater systems. I’m pleased to be involved with the Whitianga town centre upgrade and working on how this will tie in with the Tuia commemorations in 2019, which will see our part of the world being showcased nationally and internationally. A major issue we are facing here and around the country is coastal erosion, which is something that we can’t manage on our own as a local council with 28,000 ratepayers, but needs national attention.” murray.mclean@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz *For more information on our Council’s 2018-2028 Long Term Plan (LTP), see pages 140-141.

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Looking out for

Local

Meet your local Community Board members who have been busy over the past 12 months working with our Council staff on projects around your neighbourhood.

Here’s a snapshot of what’s been going on…

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THAMES COMMUNITY BOARD AREA PROJECTS Members of the Thames Community Board at the Jack McLean Community Recreation Centre. Absent: Diane Connors.

Jack McLean Community Recreation Centre

After years of work by community groups, the indoor sports centre was finally opened for use in February 2018. It’s named in honour of Jack McLean, a former Thames High School student and then a teacher, an All Black, and a formidable athlete. The facility is for the joint use of the community and the high school. Bookings can be made via our Council’s website www.tcdc.govt.nz/thamesgym or call our Customer Services team on 07 868 0200.

Thames goldfields 150th anniversary sculpture Thanks to a $50,000 grant from the Community Board, Ngati Maru commissioned a sculpture for the southern entrance to Thames, on the western side of the approach to the Kauaeranga Bridge as one drives into Thames. It is the work of Thames carver Darin Jenkins, who came up with the concept. The metalwork was completed by Thames artist John McKeowen and the basalt base was carved in the form of a mussel shell by Tapu stone sculptor Jocelyn Pratt. “For us this represents the coming together of two peoples, the iwi and the immigrants, when the goldfields opened,” says Thames Community Board Chair Diane Connors. To see the sculpture up close, park at Rhodes Park and walk over to the sculpture, or walk or cycle over the bridge from town.

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Your Thames Community Board Diane Connors

Jack McLean’s All Blacks cap.

Thames Connector public bus service After a successful six-month trial the Thames Connector bus service has been extended for another year - until May 2019 - with the possibility of it being extended for another two years if passenger demands holds up. The service is run by Thames Taxis through a contract with Waikato Regional Council. The service receives a 51% subsidy from the New Zealand Transport Agency. Fares are $2 per trip for adults and $1 for children 16 and under. Children under 5 travel free. Super Gold Card holders also travel at no charge on presentation of their card. www.tcdc.govt.nz/thamesconnector

Thames replacement pool and Rhodes Park grandstand and clubrooms Land at the south end of the Sir Keith Park Memorial Airfield has been identified as the site to build a replacement for the Thames Centennial Pool. The existing rugby grandstand and clubrooms at Rhodes Park are due to be rebuilt and could be co-located with the new pool facility to form the nucleus of a sports and recreation hub. Consultation with pool users and Rhodes Park sports clubs is taking place to work out the details. We’re also investigating the needs of our other communities in the Coromandel for swimming facilities and the funding options. This will be a major consultation as part of the 2021-2031 Long Term Plan, after which construction on the Thames replacement pool can begin. The Centennial Pool is nearing the end of its life and the current site cannot be used as it covers an urupa/burial ground. www.tcdc.govt.nz/thamesreplacementpool

Community Board Chairwoman “I’m really pleased the Community Board commissioned the Thames goldfields 150th anniversary sculpture at the southern entrance to Thames, which Ngati Maru received a Board grant to make. In the last year I’ve seen our local heritage groups and attractions make great improvements in what they are offering. I’m also happy with the successful competition the Thames Public Art Trust ran to find designs for their idea of a sculpture trail to lead people along the Hauraki Rail Trail into Thames township.” diane.connors@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Catherine Croft

“What I have most enjoyed this year is being a part of the Long Term Plan – seeing the community engagement, listening to submissions and seeing so many new ideas and possible projects come forward. What I am most excited about now is seeing them come to fruition.” catherine.croft@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Mike Veal

“Most would know, Council has just finalised the Long-Term Plan, which was a huge undertaking and, for me, was my first in-depth insight to this process. Being witness to the process and the outcomes certainly highlights the fairness of a democracy and the many benefits of public consultation. One project I’m pleased to see still being investigated is the possibility of Thames building a new aquatic facility, to replace the Centennial Pool. Although I’m not much of a recreational swimmer, I do realise the social and economic benefit such a facility might have for Thames and the district, just like the new Jack McLean Recreation Centre, which, this year, I was proud to be involved in the completion and opening of, and I see it is already in high demand – well done Thames. One of the highlights of my Community Board year has been the establishment of the new Thames Business Association, which will benefit Thames in many ways; economically, environmentally and socially. The association’s slogan of ‘Better Business. Stronger Community’ sums it up. I look forward to what the association will do for Thames and I encourage all Thames business owners/operators to join. (Membership forms are available at Carson’s Bookshop and Unichem Heather Moore Pharmacy).” mike.veal@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Lester Yates

“The high point for me has been the completion of the Jack McLean Community Recreation Centre. Having been on the Thames Community Board for eight years it has been good to see this project for the community finally finished and being well utilised.” lester.yates@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

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COROMANDELCOLVILLE COMMUNITY BOARD AREA PROJECTS Barry Brickell Memorial Stage Coromandel Town now has a new space to host events and outdoor concerts with completion of the Barry Brickell Memorial Stage in July, 2018 The memorial stage and surrounds, in Hauraki House Reserve, provide a tribute to Barry Brickell (pictured), the Coromandel potter, railway builder, conservationist and author who passed away in 2016.  The stage was a collaboration between the Coromandel-Colville Community Board, which funded consultation, design and planning requirements, and the community, with the community partner being the Driving Creek Railway Arts and Conservation Trust. Local artist John Madden, who came up with the original artistic concept (realised by Thamesbased architect Rob Johnston), and Driving Creek Railway’s Pete Sephton were closely involved with the project, adding their local artistic flair to the finishing concrete work.  Driving Creek Railway donated 12 small gauge train wheels incorporated into the stage design. Coromandel Community Board Chairman Peter Pritchard says the memorial stage was an exciting project and it was great to see the stage built so quickly. “The Barry Brickell Memorial Stage will be a valuable asset to the community and heritage values of our town,” Peter says.  Contact the Coromandel Service Centre, 355 Kapanga Rd, for information on booking the Barry Brickell Memorial Stage. Phone: 07 866 1001

Coromandel Harbour projects and interest in a marine facility development We’ve got a number of projects on-the-go around the Coromandel Harbour to upgrade our boat ramps and wharves as we prepare for more visitors and greater recreational and commercial use. Expanding and improving our harbour facilities in a safe and sustainable manner will help cater for growth in our aquaculture and tourism industries, with significant economic benefits for our district. We have been working with interested parties to facilitate the development of a marine facility in Coromandel Town. One proposal by Pita Street Developments (led by local Coromandel Town developer Gilbert James) is well advanced and is focused on establishing a marine basin and service facility near the centre of the town. Council’s role is primarily a facilitation role, which involves working with potential developers on projects that support community needs. We will keep working with the various parties until a realistic concept or concepts have been determined.  We’re also supporting the Coromandel Marine Farmers Association with their plans for expansion of the Sugarloaf Wharf (Te Kouma) as it is the only all-tide wharf for the aquaculture industry in the Coromandel Harbour, servicing up to 20 mussel barges per day. The wharf is also used by recreational and charter boats and is severely congested during peak times. See www.tcdc.govt.nz/coroharbourproject for more information.

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Pottery Lane extension Pottery Lane will be extended to reduce commercial traffic on Kapanga Road, the main retail street in Coromandel Town, and residents, ratepayers and visitors will see the benefit of reduced congestion. This is one of the major decisions our elected members made after consultation in the 2018-2028 Long Term Plan, and will cost $2.2 million.


Your Coromandel-Colville Community Board Peter Pritchard (Chairman)

“The last year has been all about securing some real progress for Coromandel-Colville through commitments for our ward being included in the Long-Term Plan. I’m very pleased with the outcomes, which see significant funding for coastal hazard identification, much-needed roading improvements including Pottery Lane extension, and funding for our Citizens’ Hall refurbishment, and all with a minimal rating impact, which is something I’m very proud of.” peter.pritchard@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Jan Autumn (Deputy Chairwoman)

Hannafords Wharf upgrade In 2018 we upgraded Hannafords Wharf - a popular tourist gateway to our region as the connector for the 360 Ferry between Auckland and Coromandel. The upgrade has improved access to the wharf and created a visitor shelter area for charter boat and ferry passengers, creating a better experience for visitors arriving and departing at the wharf. The work follows a successful bid to the Government’s Tourism Infrastructure Fund. Our Council matched the funding to ensure the work was finished by the end of June 2018. Our Mayor Sandra Goudie says the grant provided a much-needed boost for marine-related infrastructure within Coromandel Harbour. The Hannafords Wharf upgrade involved relocating the concrete wharf pathway slightly inland to improve access and to help mitigate erosion; new solar-powered lighting, a retaining wall and provision for better stormwater management. The turnaround area in the carpark was also sealed to formalise access to the wharf and to create space for busses and vehicles to turn safely.

Hauraki Road Bike Park

“I’m very proud of the achievements we’ve made this year – the Barry Brickell Memorial Stage is complete and we’ve made a start on implementing the streetscape design plan for Coromandel Town, which will preserve its artistic and heritage character, and I’m looking forward to seeing this continue to progress. Another project that excites me is plans for the Samuel James Reserve, which will create green space in the middle of Coromandel Town. We’ve also strengthened links with our communities in the northern parts of our ward, and held a Community Board meeting in Colville in 2018.” jan.autumn@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Keith Stephenson

“Community progress has a lot to do with partnerships. With honest commitment from elected members and the support from our local Coromandel-Colville ward, this partnership guarantees achievement and progress. Coromandel-Colville must have the greatest volunteer base per head of population on the Coromandel Peninsula. This is a very friendly, positive, proactive place to call home. There have been many achievements over the last year, benefiting business providers as well as local residents. It is an honour to serve as a Community Board member and I look forward to bringing our bike park to fruition in the 2018/2019 year. Keep volunteering. It makes things happen.” keith.stephenson@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz * Keith Stephenson was one of our 2018 Council’s Community Service Award winners, recognising his long involvement (20 years) with the Spirit of Coromandel Trust, which manages significant adventure races in our district including the K2 Road Cycling Classic, the Great Kauri Run and ARC Adventure Races.

John Walker

john.walker@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz No update was provided.

A bike park is proposed at the formerly rehabilitated landfill site at Hauraki Rd. The bike park is the initiative of the Spirit of Coromandel Trust and volunteers, with the financial support of the CoromandelColville Community Board. Plans are progressing with a number of working bees and volunteer hours being put into the proposal. It’s proposed the first track to open will be a pump track, which will resemble the one in Thames on Moanataiari Creek Rd (pictured).

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MERCURY BAY COMMUNITY BOARD AREA PROJECTS

New look for the Whitianga Town Centre The Whitianga Town Centre upgrade has been a major project that began in 2018 to redevelop the Whitianga main street to make it more pedestrian-friendly with alfresco-style dining available to the cafes and restaurants. The upgrade has been approached in two stages. Stage one started in April 2018 with a $4.7 million redevelopment along Albert St (from Hannan Rd to Campbell St), including a town square or plaza area on Taylor’s Mistake, linking through to The Esplanade. A significant part of the work involved replacing and upgrading the underground infrastructure, requiring road closures to vehicle traffic, while remaining open to pedestrians. Major works took place in the off-peak season to avoid disruption to businesses and the public as much as possible. Stage two is from the plaza down and along Taylor’s Mistake to The Esplanade and the wharf, and will include a new playground at The Esplanade. The town centre upgrade will also have a navigation theme based on the Kupe and Cook link to the heritage of the area. We are working with iwi and the local artistic community about how to incorporate these concepts through public art and other design features. Art will be a big feature of the new space and the project team is proposing to have art installations and murals from local artists. The upgrade of stage one is scheduled for completion by December 2018 with stage two ready for the Tuia 250 commemorations in October 2019. www.tcdc.govt.nz/mb250

Robinson Rd Boat Ramp upgrade We’re planning to improve the boat ramp in Robinson Rd, Whitianga as part of wider plans to improve existing boat and wharf facilities in the area over the next few years to cater for growing demand within this popular boating destination. At Robinson Rd, there are plans to widen the ramp immediately adjacent to the existing ramp. The old ramp will remain unchanged. This will allow all users of the existing ramp facility to keep using it as they always have while the new ramp will be at an appropriate grade to launch larger recreational vessels. The channel will be dredged from the ramp to the main river channel to enable alltide use. Separately, a proposed development for Whitianga Wharf to the Whitianga Marina is being looked at, which will improve health and safety and help spread the load of recreational fishers in the area. www.tcdc.govt.nz/mbboatramps

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Funding boost for Hahei visitor facilities


Your Mercury Bay Community Board Paul Kelly (Chairman)

Matarangi and Purangi Boat Ramp upgrades We’ve made some changes at the Matarangi and Purangi boat ramps, following upgrades at both spots. Recreational boat launching/trailer parking permit fees were introduced at the Purangi boat ramp in July 2018. After the first honesty box was vandalised at the ramp, a new honesty box is in place, accompanied by a security camera. Anyone caught vandalising the equipment will be prosecuted. Parking fees were also introduced at the Matarangi boat ramp in July 2018 after the new pontoon was built. At both sites, you can pay at the honesty box onsite: $10 for a day permit or $80 for a 12-month permit. For a list of where permits can be purchased and more information visit www.tcdc.govt.nz/boatramps

“It is hard to choose a highlight from this year as there has been many. The cooperation from the community on the Whitianga town centre upgrade is most pleasing. Meanwhile, Mercury Bay has been accepted as one of the four landing sites of Captain Cook and HMS Endeavour in 1769 and, with the Government-sponsored Tuia Encounters – 250 commemoration, will host some of the major events and projects in our area in 2019. Your Community Board has worked well together and I anticipate another productive year 2018 – 2019.” paul.kelly@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz *You can read more about the Tuia Encounters – 250 commemoration in Mercury Bay on page 116.

Rekha Giri-Percival

(Deputy Chairwoman) “It has been a busy year with the 2018 – 2028 Long Term Plan (LTP) adopted. Amongst other things, it’s great to see money set aside for investigation into the widening and raising of the bridge at Dalmeny Corner near Whenuakite and planning for the Mercury Bay Cycleway over the 2018/2019 year. It’s also exciting to see that as a result of the 2018-2028 Long Term Plan, we are looking into swimming facilities across the district and how some of our community pools can be improved. The Whitianga Town Centre upgrade started in 2018 and it has been wonderful to see the new open spaces created. It certainly feels very fresh and pedestrianfriendly. I’m sure all the new underground works will see us through for many years to come. I look forward to the completion of this project in late 2018 in time for our many visitors over summer.” rekha.percival@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz *For more information on swimming pools visit: www.tcdc.govt.nz/thamesreplacementpool

Deli Connell Hahei is one of our visitor hotspots that received a funding boost from the Government’s Tourism Infrastructure Fund (TIF) in 2018. A sum of $1,426,841 was awarded to upgrade visitor infrastructure in Hahei to respond to growing tourist numbers visiting the nearby Cathedral Cove. This will provide for an extra 250 carparks at the Hahei Village Entrance Carpark on Hahei Beach Rd, and improved walking connections between the carpark and the beach, through to Cathedral Cove. This is presently the best place for visitors to park as they can leave their car and get a shuttle up to the entrance of the walk. Visit www.go-kiwi.co.nz for more information on the shuttle. The TIF funding will also pay for a new toilet at the village shops close to the Hahei Community Hall.

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“Well into my second term, I am most excited to see the Whitianga Town Centre upgrade finally become a reality. It’s very satisfying to see businesses utilising the improved space, and I commend them for their patience under the construction period. A big thanks to contractors Dempsey Wood for mitigating disruption to shoppers and businesses as much as they possibly could. They’re a great team supported by some excellent local contractors. Looking forward, there are coastal erosion issues to seek solutions for working in partnership with the community, scientists and council staff, and plenty of fabulous new community initiatives for us to lend an ear, and our support to where we can.” deli.connell@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Bill McLean

“It is difficult to isolate personal highlights, but there is no doubt that we as a Community Board are making substantial headway with a variety of projects. We work as a team to ensure that ratepayers needs are understood and where practical, included for planning and implementation. For me, being in a position to make a positive difference in the community and being able to express my opinions on various issues is rewarding in itself.” bill.mclean@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz 15


TAIRUA-PAUANUI COMMUNITY BOARD AREA PROJECTS Pauanui recreation areas The Gallagher Park flying fox has been replaced and the Pauanui Waterways tennis courts (pictured below) were resurfaced.

Pauanui dunes In early 2018 we carried out a review of our dune restoration and maintenance programme in Pauanui. This identified a number of areas where improvements can be made, however we need to continue with some work to protect our existing dune plants. We’ve had a specialist dune care contractor from Tauranga who operated in and around the dunes, educating our local contractors and the community about dune care and planting. Our coastal engineer will investigate future work. The Tairua-Pauanui Community Board has asked for gazanias to be included in the Waikato Region Pest Management Plan (RPMP) as a pest plant. www.tcdc.govt.nz/pauanuidunes

Kennedy Park, Pauanui Work to formalise vehicle access and provide informal car parking spaces at two access points off Kennedy Park Drive east bound, and the McCormick Place extension is progressing.

Tairua Wharf Tairua has a new wharf, boat ramp and floating pontoons at Mary’s Beach – improving launching facilities for trailer boats and catering for larger recreational boats and commercial fishing and charter operators. In August 2017 the facility got final engineering sign-off and is open for public use. The budget for the project was $1.4 million.

Paku Hill, Tairua – Parking changes Signage has been installed to promote the use of the bottom carpark at Paku Drive, which is providing space for more cars and a bus. Carpark spaces at the memorial reserve carpark have increased from eight to 17. No stopping lines have been installed on Tirinui Crescent and Paku Drive as a result of a change to the Parking Control Bylaw to restrict visitors from parking on residential roads where it has hampered access to private properties and 16 caused safety issues. www.tcdc.govt.nz/parkingchanges

Left: Your TairuaPauanui Community Board at the Tairua Wharf. O U R

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Pauanui-Tairua Trail Stages one and two are complete – creating the first 4km of a cycleway and walking track between Pauanui and Awa Whio Whio (Duck Creek). The trail aims to connect Tairua and Pauanui. The TairuaPauanui Community Board allocated $10,000 to the Hikuai District Trust in February 2018, towards the cost of boardwalk repairs after a significant rain event. Resource consent for Stage 3 – Duck Creek to Hikuai – has been granted by Waikato Regional Council and work is underway. www.pauanuitairuatrail.org.nz

Your Tairua-Pauanui Community Board Bob Renton (Chairman)

“The LTP has consumed a large amount of the Board’s time this year. At a local budget level, the Board has continued to focus on the renewal of existing community assets. Last year it was the Tairua Wharf and launching ramps and this year it was to be the turn of Pauanui’s Royal Billy Point – replacing the boat ramp, building a new handrail and creating a floating jetty pontoon. Let’s hope the project can be delivered in 2019. We have also focused on issues that fall under the district funding programme: flooding , drinking water standards and supply. I would like to thank all the volunteers that work in our communities providing essential services and recreational facilities that make our little part of paradise so great.” bob.renton@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Warwick Brooks

Royal Billy Point, Pauanui The proposed design for the upgrade of the Royal Billy Point boat ramp and wharf has been finalised and the resource consent has been approved. We are working towards breaking the project up into three portions; the boat ramp and floating pontoon construction, shifting the access walkway, and replacement of the wharf pontoon. Construction is expected to be completed by October 2019. www.tcdc.govt.nz/royalbillypoint

Pepe toilets, Tairua Our Council has applied for Tourism Infrastructure Funding to investigate upgrade options for this facility.

Tairua Information Centre and Library New health and safety requirements meant there were some alterations at the Tairua Library and there are two new front desks in the same location as the old one. In June 2018, the Tairua Information Centre temporarily moved in to our meeting room at the library because its lease had expired and it was the only information centre in the Coromandel not in a council-owned or purpose-built building, paying commercial rent. Initially, there was some concern about moving off the main road, however the signage is up and staff report it’s worked well with tourists finding their way and encouraging people off the main thorough-fare. The Tairua Information Centre has secured a lease for a piece of land in the Tairua campground where it is anticipated an Information and Heritage Centre will be developed. www.tcdc.govt.nz/tairuainfocentre

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“In July 2018 my wife and I will have lived, worked and now retired in the wonderful town of Tairua. Our Community Board works tirelessly to upgrade amenities and facilities to make Tairua a desirable place to visit and to take time out, even if only for a while. Our Board sees a need to provide a Community Hub in the town’s centre. In time, this will be a place that will incorporate youth facilities, a heritage centre and a possible car-parking area that could be better utilised as an overnight site for freedom campers to park. We wish you all a great summer on the Coromandel Peninsula. Please remember to take care on our roads.” warwick.brooks@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Sarah Campbell

“The best part of being a Community Board member is working with residents and businesses, being an advocate for their issues and initiatives, and helping to set a vision and foundation for the future. We have developed a very strong community within Paradise Coast, and I particularly enjoy putting my support behind our information centres, community groups, and projects such as the Pauanui-Tairua Trail. Stage three of the trail is underway and a subcommittee is starting the trail from Tairua School to the cemetery. This walk is a worthwhile visit and a great asset. I feel privileged to be part of the collaboration in bringing our towns together and bringing awareness to what a fabulous place Paradise Coast is to live.” sarah.campbell@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Brent Turner

“It has been an interesting term for me, with some challenging issues. It has been great to see the development of a new parking design for the Paku Summit carpark and the smooth transition of the Tairua Information Centre to its new home in the library building. I also worked with the Hikuai Hall Society with their upkeep of that facility and assisted the Tairua Ratepayers Association with many of their varying tasks for the betterment of Tairua. The most significant matter for me was representing the community in resolving a dispute with NZTA about Tairua’s main road to the satisfaction of all parties involved.” brent.turner@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

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WHANGAMATA COMMUNITY BOARD AREA PROJECTS

Williamson Park proposed resource consent Public submissions were open 12 July – 10 August 2018 on the proposed 15-year resource consent to allow a total of 20 daytime and seven evening events to be held every year at Williamson Park reserve in Whangamata. Our Council applied for resource consent because Williamson Park is a council-owned reserve and the rules relating to festivals and events in our Proposed District Plan have recently been amended, which means resource consent is now required for any event where 500 or more people gather. The consent ensures that existing events such as Beach Hop, Brits at the Beach, Matariki, Anzac Day and markets are able to continue and grow. It will also allow for new events to happen at Williamson Park. You can view the resource consent application through our Consent Tracker tool www.tcdc.govt.nz/ consenttracker. #RMA/2018/203 If consent is granted, there will still be additional layers of compliance required before an event is able to be held. This includes food and alcohol licensing requirements and the obligations of the hireage contract between the promoter and Council as owner of the reserve.

Proposed Whangamata community facility The Community Board has been asked to consider the proposed Whangamata community facility project at the 101 Lindsay Road site in Whangamata. The business plan is being developed to present to Council. www.facebook.com/whangamatamarae

Our Council made a successful application to the Government’s Tourism Infrastructure Fund and $108,352 was received to upgrade the toilets at Onemana Beach.

Wentworth Valley Road sealing Council decided to proceed with the proposed sealing of the unsealed sections of Wentworth Valley Road under the 2018-2028 Long Term Plan. This upgrade will cost $1.3 million. www.tcdc.govt.nz/ltp

Whangamata’s Surf Board

The popular surf board on the reserve outside the Whangamata Council office, used by visitors and locals to take memorable photos, was damaged and has been replaced.

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Your Whangamata Community Board Ken Coulman (Chairman)

“I am proud of the co-operation and hard work of the Board over the last year. I would also like to thank the community for their involvement with the Board. I am delighted that Wentworth Valley Road sealing has been approved as it is long overdue for the community. It is also good to see the project for the shade structures at Williamson Park in place of the trees that were removed, as part of the planned improvements, are progressing.” ken.coulman@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Evelyn Adams

Williamson Park – shade structures Over the past 10 years the use of Williamson Park has grown substantially. Stage one of the park re-development has been completed and now the Board is keen to make good on its promise to provide shade as part of stage two, in place of the trees that were removed as part of the planned improvements to the much loved park. The Board is also very keen to see four shade structures, including two family BBQ areas, installed at the park before summer. Two small shade structures will be situated over existing BBQ tables by the surf club, with two larger family BBQ areas located close to the pond, where they will sit beside existing trees and the park contours to limit impact on the view. For more information see www.tcdc.govt.nz/williamsonpark

Paradise Coast

This community-led initiative to rebrand the South Eastern Ward (Tairua, Pauanui and Whangamata) is supported by both the Whangamata and Tairua-Pauanui Community Boards in conjunction with Experience Pauanui, Tairua Information Centre and Enterprise Whangamata. More than 50 businesses are using the free ‘toolbox’ of marketing material which enables them to use the united brand in their own signage and advertising. www.paradisecoast.co.nz

“I am pleased to have been part of the Board which has pushed through to get the Wentworth Valley Road sealing project approved. I have been involved in a few community projects with the Whangamata youth stock car programme and I also organised a local epilepsy awareness walk along our beautiful beach. I support the proposed concept of a community hub and can’t wait to see where that heads. I believe it will be a real asset to our community. If you haven’t already heard of or followed the Paradise Coast project, I urge you to look into it as there are so many benefits to all our communities by merging these three wards as one in our ‘Paradise Coast’.” evelyn.adams@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Ryan Thompson

“I am still enjoying teaching at Opoutere School and being the race director for the Whangamata Adventure Race and Whangamata Multi-Sport Challenge. The most significant achievement for the Board over the past year has been finally getting Wentworth Valley Road locked and loaded into our Council’s Long Term Plan and hopefully, completed in a couple of years. The proposed Community Marae Facility/ Hub has been a slow process, however we feel we have a lot of community support and look forward to taking our business plan to Council.” ryan.thompson@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

Kay Baker

“I am continuing to find ways to get our local Whangamata Community Pool covered and hope that the council initiative into all the regions swimming pools will see the benefit to our community for this to happen. I am continuing to enjoy being on the Community Board and being the liaison person on the library and swimming pool committees and working with others to get the shade sails and BBQ area set up for Williamson Park.” kay.baker@extranet.tcdc.govt.nz

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WHANGAMATA OCEAN SPORTS CLUB Club of the Year

Winners of the Club of the Year 2017, we are the Whangamata Ocean Sports Club with stunning views of the harbour and ocean. During the summer we host some of the largest fishing tournaments in the country: The New Year’s fishing tournament with junior and senior sections, the ever-popular Nauti Girls, the largest female-only fishing tournament in the country, and our flagship tournament the A1 Home’s Classic, which attracts some of the keenest anglers in the country and boasts over $60,000 in prizes! Our Restaurant, led by Head Chef Dennis Matthews, is one of the best on the Coromandel Peninsula. We serve over 70,000 meals a year with a wide range to suit our 6800+ members and their guests. Remember if you are not lucky enough to be a local or are visiting from overseas come in and try us out, we encourage visitors to trial our facilities before becoming a member and see for yourself how great the food and view is! Membership is currently available so visit our website oceansports.co.nz or email admin@oceansports.co.nz for more details. Hope to see you soon at the Club with the Million Dollar View! Ocean Sports, by the Wharf.

Phone 07 865 8704 manager@oceansports.co.nz www.oceansports.co.nz


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Kayak fishing in

PARADISE

I

Kayak fishing is on the rise in New Zeal and, and one of the pioneer s of the sport is found here in the Coromandel . Meet pro angler Rob Fort.

f there’s anyone who put the Coromandel Peninsula on the map for kayak fishing it’s local fishing legend Rob Fort. For more than 10 years Rob has been introducing people to the sport and the beauty of the Coromandel’s marine environment from his Coromandel Kayak Adventures store, just 2km south of Coromandel Town. These days however, you don’t have to have visited the Tiki St store or taken one of his guided tours to appreciate his passion and knowledge for hunting, fishing and spear diving from the kayak. Thanks to social media, Rob’s fans are found far and wide. His self-produced show on the NZ Kayak Fishing channel is one of the most popular in the world, ranked 26th in YouTube’s kayak fishing category, with more than 3000 subscribers. Rob’s also a regular on Radio Live’s fishing show, a columnist for the NZ Bay Fisher and NZ Fishing News magazines, and appears on various television fishing shows. Across everything he does for kayak fishing, Rob’s a big promoter of the Coromandel,

which he has tried for several years to name the kayak fishing capital of New Zealand. “It’s a mecca. With three coastlines, no matter what the wind direction, there is always somewhere you can go to find calm water and fish off your kayak,” Rob says. “Where else in New Zealand can you access safe kayak fishing in most weather conditions close to shore? Then there’s the uniqueness of our bays and the high concentration of islands on both sides of the peninsula – it’s fantastic to simply tour around and look at the scenery. “You can be as close to civilisation as you want, but it’s not hard to get somewhere remote when that’s what you want. In general, it’s just an awesome place.” Rob grew up in Wellington and originally came to the Coromandel to work on his marine art. He still makes sculptures and locals bring him their prized fishing catch from which he will make a replica. His love for kayak fishing began 18 years ago and he

can remember when he and his friend Stan Parkinson were the only anglers fishing from their kayaks in the Coromandel Town area. “Now, just about every third car heading up this way has a kayak on the roof,” Rob says. As the sport has exploded, Rob has been front and centre. He’s a former member of the New Zealand Berkley Pro team and is New Zealand’s longest serving member of the Humminbird Pro Team and Ocean Kayak Pro Adventure team. Rob’s most memorable catch from his kayak was hooking a 25kg kingfish caught on soft bait in 6m of water up against the coastline, and being towed around at speed by the fish for about 20 minutes. Rob has rigged his kayak with video cameras and a wireless microphone from which he captures footage for his blog. In typical kiwi fashion, this one-man-band content producer beat the big-budget US production companies to win the international award for best kayak fishing film at the 2013 Reel Paddling Film Festival.

Rob’s top five tips for kayak fishing on the Coromandel • Get current information on the conditions and fishing by visiting a local fishing store. • When fishing with soft baits and plastics, use natural colours such as brown and green shades. • Fish the western side of the peninsula for snapper during spring and summer then the east coast in winter. • Troll hard body lures for kingfish and kahawai between fishing spots. • When fishing mussel farms, keep your distance from working barges and use a proper hook to attach the kayak to them.

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Pro angler Rob Fort has helped put the Coromandel on the map for kayak fishing.

“We have a unique fishery here in New Zealand,

AND ESPECIALLY THE COROMANDEL …” The film featured kayak fishing in the Coromandel. Although Coromandel Kayak Adventures started as a fishing tour business, the rising tide of regulation in the adventure tourism industry put paid to offering tours and despite his years of experience, Rob no longer works as a professional guide. Now, the focus is on kayak hireage and some days the store resembles a bustling information centre as Rob advises tourists and keen kayak fishers on local conditions and fishing and diving hot spots. Rob and his partner Janet Hall, also an accomplished kayak angler, live on site and keep busy developing the Rob Fort Series kayak fishing accessory line, which currently has 64 products to cater to the growing sport. Time and energy is also spent educating others on the sustainability of the fishery. He has introduced many anglers to soft bait fishing and is recognised for his involvement and education on the use of lures rather than buying bait. Growth in the level of marine rubbish

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frustrates him, as does seeing people not show respect to the environment when out on water. “The most frustrating thing is seeing visitors come here and hammer it,” Rob says. “I promote taking enough for a feed; it’s not often we take our limit.” He points to the depletion of some fish stocks in Australia as the classic example of over-fishing and says habits here at home need to change to avoid a similar experience here. Rob is among those who backed calls for a total ban on catching crayfish so they can recover from their critically low numbers. (Read more about this on page 25) “I’ve seen a massive decline in crayfish around the Coromandel Peninsula and talking to others out there diving, they will tell you the same thing.

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“We have a unique fishery here in New Zealand, and especially the Coromandel, with a diverse range of species we can catch from rock, boat and kayak. “And we’ve got an awesome scallop fishery on both sides of the peninsula. This last scallop season was one of the best. “It all needs to be protected so it’s here for the next generation.” This summer Rob says he’ll continue to be getting people out on kayaks and promoting the Coromandel as paradise for kayak fishing. www.kayakadventures.co.nz You can catch ‘NZ Kayak Fishing’ on YouTube here www.youtube.com/user/ NZkayakfishing l

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Coromandel

SPORT FISHING

Shared values Whether they share facilities with the community fire station, or enjoy a ‘million-dollar sea view’, Coromandel’s sport fishing clubs are thriving stamping grounds for many fishing enthusiasts and are a key part of the history of the Coromandel. With colourful characters, dangerous adventures, indelible memories, and in some cases, scandals, the school of fishing stories belonging to our clubs seems endless. There are five key fishing clubs across the Coromandel. Each club is different, but all play a big role in their community and share an absolute love of the ocean and its treasures. You may imagine the very idea of a ‘sports fishing club’ is to pillage the ocean, yet nothing is further from the minds of the passionate members who know they are joint custodians of an environment we all need to protect. Our fishing clubs acknowledge that as fishing stocks become depleted, attitudes change, and as a desperate fishing industry becomes more desperate, their love of fishing must be more than just a selfish pursuit when the wind’s blowing in the right direction. Volunteers, general managers and commodores alike realise that if their club is to survive, everyone, from the trawler captain to the couple on a kayak, needs to start ‘limiting our catch’ and not, ‘catching our limit’.

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Matarangi Boat and Fishing Club This volunteer-based club plays an essential role in an isolated community on the southern end of Whangapoua Harbour.

With one of the most dangerous bars on the Coromandel to navigate, the club runs an annual advisory course between Christmas and New Year to teach locals and visitors the safety aspects and techniques required to cross the bar. The course grows more popular each year. (This 2018 course is on at 9am on December 28). Immensely proud of their club and their place in the world, the Matarangi Boat and Fishing Club has lobbied hard over the years for improvements on safety and facilities, which is why they’re thrilled to bits with their new boat ramp. The club also has full calibrated weighing facilities and conducts courtesy weighs for fishing enthusiasts. Address: 208 Matarangi Drive (The Fire Station) Membership: 119

Matarangi Boat and Fishing Club – left-right: Past president Harry Karl, committee member David Macdonald, secretary Wayne Davis, president Peter Murphy.

Mercury Bay Game Fishing Club Formed in 1924, the Mercury Bay Game Fishing Club is one of New Zealand’s oldest fishing clubs. In 1928, the famous American western writer Zane Grey arrived in the Mercury Bay area, bringing with him quality rods and reels, and it wasn’t long before his rave reviews stateside helped create New Zealand’s game fishing status and make this club world famous. After WW2, the stories and legends grew, including that of New Zealand’s first professional deep-sea fishing woman, Connie Simons (pictured). A former Miss New Zealand, Connie was a skilful skipper and her boat often took the yearly honours for catching the most fish. The Mercury Bay Game Fishing Club sits on premium Whitianga real estate, overlooking the wharf and ferry terminal. Surrounded by trendy cafes and restaurants in this fast-growing tourist area, the club clearly enjoys its historic role and loves playing host to the many thousands of fishermen and women who have visited this spectacular bay. Alan Proctor, the club’s general manager of five years, has many a story to share and invites locals and visitors to grab

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Annual fees: $40 seniors, $15 juniors (under-17) Tournaments: Famous for its Doris Day Tournament – April 20, 2019 an ale and inspect the walls of the club, where its history is recorded. “We’re all proud of our history and determined to protect and grow this wonderful, historic club for the generations to follow,” Alan says. Address: The Esplanade, Whitianga Membership: 2,200

A photo of Connie Simons – New Zealand’s first professional deep-sea fishing woman – hangs on the wall in the club rooms of the Mercury Bay Game Fishing Club.

Annual fees: Nomination fee – $40. $80 senior, $120 couple, $30 under-21, $15 under-17.

Tournaments: The club has several tournaments including the Ladies Tournament on Auckland Anniversary Weekend, the Tristram Marine Open in late February and the Stabicraft Trailer Boat in March. www.mbgfc.co.nz or www.facebook.com/MercuryBayGFC

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CLUBS Tairua Pauanui Sports Fishing Club President Warren Maher in the club rooms in Tairua.

Tairua Pauanui Sports Fishing Club Located inside the tranquil harbour between Pauanui and Tairua, the Tairua Pauanui Sports Fishing Club is renowned for its hospitality and great fishing. Shoe and Slipper Islands are close by and just a little further out and famous for its big game fishing are the Alderman Islands. These waters offer spectacular diving territory with a great reputation for spear fishing. Club president Warren Maher runs his own electrical business when he’s not “down at the club’ and is one of the many who have given a large part of their lives to making this place special. “Our club’s quite isolated from the town, which means we’ve had to create our own market – so we now have a courtesy bus, Sky Sport and two paid employees,” Warren says. “But, we’ve outgrown this place. Our next move is major alterations, and this will happen in the next few years.”

“You may imagine the very idea of a ‘sports fishing club’ is to pillage the ocean, yet nothing is further from the minds of the passionate members who know they are joint custodians of an environment we all need to protect.”

Whangamata Ocean Sports Club Voted the Best Fishing Club in New Zealand in 2017, ‘The Ocean’ guards the entrance to Whangamata Harbour. With spectacular views over the famous Whanga surfing bar and the wharf, the Whangamata Ocean Sports Club is a much-loved and visited local asset. It’s also the largest fishing club in the country and, with its newly expanded restaurant and bar, it’s one of the town’s largest employers. With a female commodore and a young general manager, this club is active and committed to conservation. While not forgetting its fishing heritage, the Whangamata Ocean Sports Club is also extremely conscious of its role in the community. Both board and management realise that because of its status and membership size, it has a leading role to play in the future of New Zealand fishing. Calls for a crayfish ban Whangamata Ocean Sports Club has been vocal in backing calls for a total ban on crayfish catching to save the species. General manager Phil Keogh says there needs to be a ban on anyone taking crayfish for two years, so the critically low stocks can recover. ‘It’s not about stopping fishing completely, but thinking about the future of fishing,” he says. In 2018, club members were asked in a survey (part of a broader consultation by the Ministry for Primary Industries) for Whangamata Ocean Sports Club their views on temporary restrictions on crayfish catching or an General Manager Phil Keogh outright ban. They were in favour of putting a stop to commercial and recreational catch completely, to allow stocks to replenish. Sustainability of fisheries and the club’s own environmental footprint is a big focus for the club, which has taken steps to reduce plastic and waste, using shells and bamboo for sauce containers, and paper straws instead of plastic. The club is also responsible for organising the annual community beach clean-up on Whangamata Beach. Address: 1100 Port Road, Whangamata

Address: 11 Tui Terrace, Tairua

Membership: 6,800

Membership: 600

Annual fees: Joining fee: $100 (includes affiliated fees for other clubs in New Zealand and overseas). Annual fee: $100 per couple, $55 single, $15 under-18.

Annual fees: $80 senior, $110 couple, $15 under-16 Tournaments: Many and varied during the year including the Shimano Stand-up, the infamous Fish and Chicks ladies competition and the Killwell Snapper Classic. www.facebook.com/tairua.fishingclub

Tournaments:The competition calendar starts with the New Year tournament followed by Nauti Girls – the largest fishing competition for women in New Zealand. The A1 Homes Classic is in February 2019; Tag-and-Release is in March and there’s a spearfishing tournament in April. Kids’ competitions run throughout the year including ‘Katch 4 Kidz’ (www.facebook.com/katch4kidz), which is held in August alongside the adults’ Surf’n’Turf competition which combines hunting and fishing. www.oceansports.co.nz or www.facebook.com/WhangamataOceanSportsClub

*Note – Competitions mentioned are only a small number of those held across the Coromandel. For more information on fishing competitions – check out the club websites.

Mercury Bay.

**Don’t be shy: All visitors to our sports fishing clubs are welcome. If they have the room they’re only too pleased to sign you in. (Note: Peak times may mean the club is full and it’s ‘members only’)

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Tairua Fish’n’Chicks

Coromandel Recreational Fishing Club The Coromandel Recreational Fishing Club was incorporated in 2002. President Allison Brown says it’s a small, friendly club, catering for families and anyone who enjoys their fishing and the odd competition. The club doesn’t have club rooms but holds its meetings at the Admiral Arms Hotel and conducts its competition weigh-ins at the Garden Bar, both in Coromandel Town. On Friday nights the club raises funds with a meat pack raffle at the Admiral Arms, with a monthly $100 prize for the largest fish of the month caught by a club member. Fish sizes are recorded for trophies and pins at the end-of-year prize giving and Christmas Party, where Santa gives presents to Coromandel Recreational Fishing the club members’ children. Club’s youngest member, Indi. New members are always welcome and are kept up-to-date with monthly email newsletters. Address: 24 Wharf Rd, Coromandel Town Membership: 70-100 Annual fees: $75 family of four (two adults and two children) $40 seniors, $15 juniors Tournaments: Popular annual tournament ‘The Classy Chicks’ is held in February and the winner receives a $1500 travel voucher. The club holds a number of smaller competitions throughout the year, open to members and non-members. www.facebook.com/Coromandelfishingclub

A member of our Council’s communications team, Amber Baker (pictured right), took part in the 30th anniversary of the Tairua Fish’n’Chicks competition in March 2018, hosted by Okuma and the Tairua Pauanui Sports Fishing Club. Here’s how she found the experience: It is fair to say that crossing the Tairua-Pauanui bar was a gnarly experience due to the big swells and generally rough conditions. Lucky for us, we had the expert knowledge from Okuma’s skipper, Stuart Hill and the local fishing club secretaries husband and wife duo Arthur and Tina Larsen. Being a newbie to fishing among 65 registered female anglers, I didn’t have high expectations of myself. Also on board was my partner Kaleb, a keen fisherman. However, the males on board were not allowed to fish. For those ladies out there with keen fishing hubbies, I highly recommend entering a female-only competition like this and getting them to come along so they can provide some coaching, rather than take over. With the guidance of all on board, particularly Stuart from Okuma, I learnt more about fishing in a few hours than I ever expected and even won a placing - third in the trevally species. Even if you wouldn’t consider yourself to be interested in fishing, heading out on a charter with expert knowledge and the best gear is a must-do activity for everyone living or visiting the Coromandel. Entering a competition is even more exciting because you have a chance of winning some great prizes as well as catching dinner. Ever since Tairua Fish’n’Chicks I have been hooked and can’t wait to enter more comps. For more information about the Tairua Fish’n’Chicks competition, visit: www.facebook.com/TairuaFnC

Our Coromandel asked local fishing clubs for their top five fishing tips for beginners. Here they are: 1/ Join a club. Or just pop in and be signed in. Usually, there’s plenty of room for visitors and chances are you’ll meet a skipper who will be happy to take you out in exchange for some petrol money. 2/ Take a day skipper’s course. Even if the boat isn’t yours, these skills are valuable to have. You’ll learn important information about safety, rules and regulations and gain confidence. Contact your local Coastguard for course dates and times.

Top fishing tips for beginners

3/ Learn the rules and fishing regulations. Often recreational anglers fail to know the rules. For example, what line or hooks to use in competitions, legal fish sizes and daily limits. 4/ Keep a diary. Knowing where you live, the tides, winds and what the weather was like the day you caught that five-pounder all helps build your local fishing knowledge. 5/ Catch your own bait. Rather than slip into the local gas station, pop down to the wharf and catch your own bait. Fresh is best and you’ll soon learn the best bait to use.

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Photography: Ryan Hansen

A DVERTORIAL

New discoveries await: Scuba diving with Dive Zone Whitianga The waters around Mercury Bay offer a huge range of outstanding marine experiences for scuba divers, free divers and snorkellers. And the team at Dive Zone Whitianga love nothing more than to introduce divers to this magical environment. The shop at 10 Campbell St is one of the largest diving training providers in the country, offering a full range of PADI dive courses on the Coromandel Peninsula. (PADI stands for Professional Association of Diving Instructors) These include the PADI kids programmes, PADI Open Water (learn to dive), Advanced Open Water and Rescue courses, through to fulltime and part-time NZQA dive career-based courses that take students through to PADI Specialty Instructor level (Diploma in Professional Scuba Instruction) which are internationally-recognised qualifications for employment in the diving industry anywhere in the world. Budding divers travel from across New Zealand and overseas to train at Dive Zone Whitianga’s ‘Academy of Diving’. The crew of skilled PADI dive specialists successfully pass more than 500 recreational and 20 instructor-level certifications a year. Dive Zone Whitianga owner and PADI Course Director Darrell Bird says the stunning coastline of Mercury Bay is the ideal place to learn. “We believe we offer the best training facility to become a PADI professional and some of the best of New Zealand’s dive country to train in,” Darrell says. “The magic of the Mercury Bay is such that even on a bad day, when the weather is a bit average, we know there will always be somewhere a bit sheltered from the weather and the diving will be spectacular.” Darrell opened the shop 14 years ago when he arrived from Hamilton and saw no dive shop in Whitianga. People told him he wouldn’t succeed. “Everyone thought I was a bit crazy, but failure was not an option. I did a kayak trip to explore all the locations in the bay and could see the opportunities and I took a punt,” Darrell says. Dive Zone also offers a charter service that caters for recreational divers. In the peak summer season, charters go to the Mercury and Alderman Islands and our outstanding marine reserve area daily. “A lot of our customers come to the Coromandel for the ultimate weekend. They come up Friday, and train with us Saturday and Sunday on one of the recreational courses,” Darrell says. It’s a dynamic environment – from the Marine Reserve right out to the many outer islands. With beautiful kelp forests, volcanic terrain, and a huge array of fish life providing an ever-changing experience. There are the typical Kiwi divers who like to hunt crays and more often now there are the photography buffs who find amazing things to photograph. “The facilities and training available to them at Dive Zone Whitianga and the accommodation, eating and great environment in our township make coming all the way to the Coromandel an attractive option.” Dive Zone also works with a lot of school groups and Darrell

Dive Zone Whitianga offers a full range of scuba dive training including: • Tertiary Training Course – Become a qualified PADI Speciality Dive Instructor with a one-year Diploma In Professional Scuba Instruction course with enrolments in February and August each year.  Dive Zone also offers part-time PADI Dive Master training courses. (Meets the Government’s fees free policy criteria for eligible students.) • PADI Recreational Dive Training – Learn to dive PADI Open Water, PADI Advanced and PADI Rescue training courses are offered all year round.

continues to be actively involved with organising and teaching these groups. These school groups come from around the country and the kids are able to gain NZQA credits through their dive training. Darrell says he loves seeing the growth in the kids’ faces when they come through one of the courses, and feels satisfied in opening their eyes to potential careers in the outdoors. www.divezone.co.nz/whitianga

The Coromandel offers world class diving opportunities and Dive Zone Whitianga are the experts ready to show you just how outstanding our dive country is. From our Marine Reserve to the Mercury and Aldermen Islands – we offer a range of opportunities for all levels of diver. Come and let us show you our world … Our dive store is stocked with a huge range of dive and freedive necessities. From wetsuits to spear guns and even a great range of kayaks and everything in between. We are your one stop dive shop when on the Coromandel Peninsula!

NOW at 10 Campbell St

Ph 8671580

OPEN 7 DAYS

Getintoit!

• Learn to dive through to instructor training • Top quality retail equipment • Full range hire equipment • Full service workshop • Tank fills and testing • Dive charter trips


RECREATIONAL FISHING IS THE 5TH MOST POPULAR RECREATIONAL ACTIVITY FOR ADULT NEW ZEALANDERS. – NEW ZEALAND MARINE RESEARCH FOUNDATION

The waters of the Coromandel offer some of the most enjoyable fishing experiences you’ll find. There are plentiful fishing spots for marlin, snapper and kingfish. Not to mention stunning coastlines, crystal waters and magical offshore islands including the Mercury Islands, the Alderman Islands and Slipper Island. A fishing charter is one of the best ways to experience fishing with experienced skippers who cater to seasoned anglers and novices alike. Most of the skippers have been fishing in these waters for a long time, so they have a wealth of local knowledge and experience to share - and the best tricks for attracting fish. On a fishing charter, you can enjoy the fishing, with the rest of the trip taken care of. The Coromandel has a wide variety of charters, offering different experiences. Here’s a selection of some of the charter businesses in our region.

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Coro Cowboys

Husband and wife duo Grant and Tracey Wykes have been the owners and operators of Coro Cowboy Fishing Charters for almost three years in Coromandel Town and pride themselves on offering a personalised service. ‘Oban Cowboy’ is day fishing boat with two five-hour trips a day leaving from Hannaford’s Wharf and taking up to 10 people on board. Coro Cowboy fishing trips are prominently based in their backyard on the mussel farms located around Coromandel Harbour and the Firth of Thames. These farms are a huge food source for fish, particularly snapper. And if conditions are rough, the mussel farms provide calmer waters due to the ropes and buoys, or the charter can tuck in behind an island for better conditions. The Wykes are committed to making sure you get the most out of your trip using local knowledge, including friends working on the mussel barges, and a great fish finder. They have everything you need including tea, coffee and biscuits, a toilet on board, rods and bait for hire and lowcost accommodation available at the Cowboy Fishing Lodge. Coro Cowboys cater for all levels of fishing experience. Experienced fishos will appreciate the local knowledge and techniques employed to target fish. Novices will benefit from the tuition and patience of skipper Grant. If you don’t like to touch the smelly bait or fish, Grant can also bait your hooks and remove your fish for you. Coro Cowboys has a group that comes every month and increasing numbers of tourists who have provided them with a great rating on trip-advisor. www.corocowboyfishing.co.nz

Coromandel Fishing Charters

Tom Meyers’ record catch is 100 snapper in 45 minutes. That was all it took for the 16 guests aboard his Coromandel Fishing Charters 51-foot vessel ‘Joint Venture’ to catch their bag limits while fishing around mussel farms in the Hauraki Gulf. “I was back at home having a cup of tea by 10am,” he jokes. The fishing around mussel farms is simply the best in the world, for the sheer numbers of fish, the variety of species and the amazing scenery – there is absolutely nothing like it,” Tom says. The mussel farms act as an artificial reef. They provide shelter for baby fish and are home to an abundance of marine life, so they’re the prefect hunting and breeding grounds for snapper, kawhai, kingfish, john dory and trevally. “Our skippers stay in constant contact with the farmers and we’ll follow the harvesters and come through after them,” Tom says. “We regularly get people on our charters catching snapper from 10lb to 15lb pounds, well up to 20lbers. “We’ll do eight charters in a weekend and have everyone catch their limits – that’s seven fish each. We have a boat minimum of 320mm and we don’t allow any throwbacks. You keep the first seven legal fish you catch. And once limits are reached, it’s lines up.” So prolific is the fishing among the lines that people are travelling from all over the country to experience it and it’s seeded a thriving spinoff industry that’s proving a boon for the local community. Coromandel Fishing Charters is one of seven recreational fishing charter companies operating out of the Coromandel Harbour who target the fishing grounds around the local mussel farms. www.coromandelfishingcharters2013.co.nz * Reprinted with permission from Aquaculture New Zealand

Carl Muir Fishing and Provider Charters Carl Muir has guided sport fishing trips out of Tairua and Whitianga since 2005 when he started his first charter business. Carl offers fishing trips and charters for kingfish, snapper, marlin, hapuka, swordfish and tuna out of Tairua and Whitianga on his 7.7m luxury charter boat Provider. Launched in 2017, Provider is custom-built with many features to make it the ultimate sport fishing day boat, including a fully-enclosed cabin with seating around a central lure rigging table to keep passengers warm and dry on the way to the grounds and top Furuno electronics to help Carl find the fish. Top-of the-line jigging, top water, softball and game fishing rods, reels and tackle is provided. Carl says – just bring a positive attitude and kick back on the ultimate fishing boat. Carl also ventures further afield around New Zealand and abroad with regular clients to other bucket-list fishing and diving locations. Carl says fishing with his family is top of his list and is what motivates his fishing these days. On his website you can sign-up to Carl’s blog to follow the adventures of Carl and his fishing-mad family: www.carlmuirfishing.co.nz * The Our Coromandel cover photo was taken on one of Carl Muir’s charters.

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Epic Adventures

Strikezone Fishing Charters

Strikezone can pick you up from the Tairua Wharf, Paku Jetty or Pauanui Wharf, and also travels to Whitianga. Owner and operator Jason Harris has been fishing out of Tairua since he could hold a fishing rod and wants to catch fish as much as you do, so rest assured you are in good hands. Tairua and its surrounds, Slipper Island and The Aldermen Islands, are famous for their often crystal clear waters, abundant fish life and a variety of locations to spearfish with shallow reef, weed lines, and deep pinnacles to explore. Jason’s knowledge of the area is intimate and he can turn his hand to many different styles of angling. His current passion is soft bait fishing for big snapper in shallow water and he can teach you the right techniques to be successful with this exciting form of fishing. Chasing big kingfish using different techniques is also his speciality. Strikezone is a purpose-built, 7.2m, sports fishing machine that gets you to the best spots fast. It’s ideal for up to five people and, being made of fibreglass, delivers a very comfortable ride and the hardtop ensures everyone on board stays warm and dry. Half-day (4 hour) and full day (8 hour) charters are available and Strikezone also offers a spearfishing experience as well as sight-seeing trips. “Every trip is customised depending on what you want to do. It’s a rare day we come home with nothing and you will find that our pricing is extremely competitive,” Jason says. “We also have an outstanding return rate, this means that 80% of our clients come back for another charter or more.” “We take people who have never been fishing before through to the guys that have their own boats but want to fish in a different location. We cater for all skill levels and experience,” says Jason. Jason’s top tip for those heading out on a charter is “to relax, go with the flow, take in the knowledge, enjoy the day and take it for what it is.” www.strikezonefishingcharters.co.nz

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The team at Epic are proud to say that after 13 years in the business, they still consistently land the biggest Coromandel Kingfish. Operating out of Whitianga (and offering full boat pick-ups from Tairua), Epic Adventures fish from the Mercury and Cuvier Islands through to the Alderman Islands, taking in the sights of Cathedral Cove, Hahei Marine Reserve (no fishing there of course!) and many other hidden gems on the Coromandel coast. Owners Bruce and Matt, both with surf life-saving and adventure backgrounds, took over Epic in late 2016 and have since expanded the charters to Russell and Paihia in the Bay of Islands, making Epic the largest Kingfish charter operator in the country. Epic operates three boats out of Whitianga, one out of Amodeo Bay in Colville and one in the Bay of Islands. Epic caters for kingfish adventures, family fishing trips, reef fishing, half-day snapper trips, tournament fishing and work or team building trips. Winter fishing is getting busier with off-season bookings no longer strictly off-season. “That’s mainly because the best fishing is often in winter for the largest target species,” Bruce says. Epic is popular with tourists. In Whitianga, more than half of the customers are Australian. The charters are also very popular with the domestic ‘drive market’ customers from the Waikato, Bay of Plenty and Auckland. Be sure to book early as it can be tough to get a spot during summer. Charters are of course weather-dependent, but Epic’s fleet of large Senator Boats are safe and provide that perfect fishing platform. “Epic’s skippers know where the fish are holding at any one time and the boats communicate well with each other to ensure they get the customers onto the biggest fish,” Bruce says. “It’s great to be on an Epic charter as you will learn new techniques and professional ways to target kingfish. You can’t beat the experience of the skippers who are out there, day in and day out.” Epic prides itself on fishing sustainably and respects the health of our fisheries with a strict one kingfish per person policy. It also provides the best, top-of-the-line equipment on its boats – adding to the truly Epic experience. www.epicadventures.co.nz • Facebook @epicadventuresnz Phone: 021-886-223

Fish n Tits Charters – Coromandel Town

Fish n Tits is a fishing charter tailored to the families who want to learn how to fish. Owner and skipper Kim Brett describes her charter services as specialising in “comfort fishing” which is great for older people and families, providing an atmosphere for people to relax and enjoy catching fish, without pressure and with like-minded anglers. Kim has more than 30 years fishing experience within the Coromandel Harbour and its outer reefs and channels. Once onboard the Evelynne J, the travel time to these spots is minimal – approximately only 20-25 mins from the launch site in the Coromandel Harbour. And with so many outer islands in close proximity, sea conditions are generally favourable to even the most novice of fisher-people. With a maximum of six people on board, Kim says she will attempt to teach, encourage and instill confidence in the most experienced and novice of anglers. Kim says demand for charters is growing for locals and tourists alike, and Kim says she has seen an increase in the volume of female anglers increase in line with growth in the annual, female-only “Classy Chicks” fishing competition run by the Coromandel Recreational Fishing Club. Fishntits.co.nz

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Fish On

If you are looking for a luxurious yet laid-back charter experience, then Fish On Charters, based at the Marina in Whangamata, is for you. Operating year-round, Fish On specialise in just about everything for group charters including fishing, game fishing, diving, kayak trips and island tours. Skipper Ian Johansen and his partner/deckie Julie Dennis are Whangamata locals who offer a fun fishing experience catering to a maximum of 16 people, with up to 10 people fishing at one time. Ian has more than 25 years’ experience with vessels on the ocean and a wide knowledge of the Coromandel East Coast waters. Julie is onhand to cater to your needs whether it’s a cup of tea or helping bait hooks. The impressive Roger Hill Power Cat is 12.8m long and 5.2m wide with a cruising speed of 14-16 knots, providing a stable and comfortable ride – ideal for those who normally get sea-sick. The Cat has plenty of space, full galley facilities, comfortable seating areas, a fridge, two toilets, two showers and berths for up to 6 people for overnight trips. Half-day, full-day and overnight charters are available, mainly around the Alderman Islands, Mayor Island, Slipper Island, Great Barrier and the Mercury Islands. Unique to Fish On is the option to charter the whole boat, so you can go where you want. If they spot something in the distance they will go over and have a look and stop for guests to have a swim or explore wherever the trip takes them by foot or perhaps to try your luck at kayak fishing close to the islands where larger boats can’t access. Fish On will also be offering a ferry service from Whangamata to Slipper Island over the summer period. www.fishoncharters.co.nz

WE ARE SPOILT IN THE COROMANDEL WITH MANY FISHING CHARTERS ON OFFER. HERE ARE A FEW MORE TO CHECK OUT: EAST COAST Whangamata: • Te Ra Charters – tera.whangamata.co.nz

Tairua/Pauanui: • Waipae Magic – www.waipaemagic.co.nz • Mad Max – www.facebook.com/madmaxsportfishingnz • R ick’s Spearfishing Charters – www.oceanhunter.co.nz

Whitianga: • Catch – catchcharters.co.nz • I sland Explorer – www.islandexplorercharters.co.nz • Star Trek – www.startrekcharters.co.nz • Whitianga Charters – www.whitiangacharters.co.nz • Marine Adventures – www.marineadventures.co.nz • Escapade NZ – www.islandcruise.co.nz

WEST COAST Thames/Coromandel: • L egionaire Fishing Charters – www.legionairefishingcharters.co.nz • Snapper Express – www.snapperexpress.co.nz • T hames Charters “Fish 4 T” – www.thamescharters.co.nz • M ussel Barge Snapper Safaris – www.musselbargesafaris.co.nz • Smokin’ Reels – www.smokinreelsfishing.co.nz • C oromandel Kayak Adventures – www.kayakadventures.co.nz • Anglers Lodge Fishing Charters – www.anglers.co.nz • The Mad Fisherman – www.themadfisherman.co.nz • M.V. Te Wairoa – www.coromandelboatcharters.com • W hy Worry Fishing Charters – www.coromandelfishing.co.nz • N adgee – www.facebook.com/NadgeeFishingCharters

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AdventureS under the Seven-time New Zealand spearfishing champion Julian Hansford found his love for free diving in the waters of Mercury Bay. Now, home from a successful international diving career, he’s passing it back with his new venture Spearo Camp New Zealand.

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Divers of any level are welcome to stay at Spearo Camp, which is Julian’s Kiwi bach-style home in Kuaotunu, to enjoy free-dive spearfishing adventures by day, and a meal together at night – fresh from the day’s catch.

free dive by some of the most respected watermen in the town.

Their host, Julian, has been diving in these waters for most of his life. Growing up in Whitianga; he was taught to fish and

Later, through the local dive club, the town’s older “spearos” taught Julian and his friends to spearfish.

His father Avon Hansford was a keen fisherman and Julian spent much of his childhood out in the boat, developing a natural enjoyment for the water.

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He later completed his diving apprenticeship under former top spear fisherman Peter Herbert (Herb), owner of Whitianga-based sea urchin export packhouse SUNZ, who Julian describes as one of the best commercial divers and spear fisherman the country has had. He also credits a lot of his seamanship to his time working as a deckhand under wellrespected local fisherman Phillip Clow.

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sea “I love to see all these keen young divers getting out there and doing it...”

At the age of 15, Julian started commercial diving – setting him on a course to travel the world working for underwater construction companies in New Zealand and Australia, pearl diving in Broome, Australia and tuna wrangling and abalone diving in South Australia. However, he wasn’t sure what he could do with his ocean skills when he returned home to New Zealand in 2015. With the sport of spearfishing taking off, he settled on instructing and that’s where the idea for Spearo Camp was born.

fish, to stop once you have enough, how to look after and fillet your catch and cook it,” Julian says. “It’s always rewarding to see how stoked a person is when they spear their first fish, or finish their first free dive. It’s just so much fun once you click, and become comfortable in the water.” Although Julian has dived all over the world, the Coromandel is his first love for spearfishing.

The spearfishing adventures cost $250 per person, or $350 per person for ‘spearo camp’ which includes diving, accommodation and breakfast. Gear hire and airport drop-off or pick-up can be arranged. Julian also offers private charters and caters for more elite spearos who want to travel outside the Coromandel to wilder waters, chasing trophy or record-size game fish. Clients are a mix: tourists, farmers from the South Island looking for a change of scenery and parents who want their kids to learn how to handle themselves better in the water. Julian says he doesn’t just teach people how to spearfish, but how to fish sustainably; how to get out of a bad situation and, when back on land, not wasting the fish. “We prepare the catch together, leaving nothing to waste. At dinner time we feast like kings with scallops, crayfish and sashimi.” What Julian loves most is passing on the same love of underwater adventures passed on to him as a kid. “I love to see all these keen young divers getting out there and doing it. I want to help teach them and train them the way I was shown. I want to help them understand the currents, the waves, the wind, how to hunt

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SpearoCamp is popular with all ages.

“The Coromandel waters are the most exciting with whales, dolphins, huge schools of kingfish and mantaray,” he says. “You can’t beat the cleanness and how well our fishery is managed. The community here is like one massive family with some of the best beaches in the world.” After Spearo Camp’s successful first summer in 2017/2018, Julian spent the winter pearl diving in Australia and exploring places in Fiji to offer an international destination for Spearo Camp next winter. www.spearocamp.nz l

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CATCH A WAVE in the Coromandel NZ Surf N Stay WHANGAMATA

Surf N Stay operates all year round and owners Katrina (Kat) Millar and Mauro Bender welcome everyone, whether you want to learn to surf or make their hostel on Beverley Terrace your base for exploring the surroundings. They have been operating surf classes for the last 12 years and are both Surfing NZ-certified.

Whangamata Surf School WHANGAMATA

Situated at beach access 8, Whangamata Surf School has direct access to the best waves for all conditions. They offer individual or group lessons to best suit you. With backgrounds in education and high performance sport, their instructors are local and Surfing NZ qualified to provide the best local knowledge, water safety skills and a great surfing experience. Website: www.whangamatasurfschool.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/whangasurfschool Phone: 021 297 5368

Outback Surf and S’UP School PAUA N U I

Five years ago they established the Surf N Stay in Whangamata, where Kat had spent many summer holidays learning to surf herself. “We have found it is a great town to raise our children and an added bonus has been the safe beach so we could teach our two sons how to surf,” Kat says. They also love teaching other children and therefore offer school holiday programs and afterschool surfing groups. “Due to sandy shores, no rocks and less rips, teaching on these waves with children is safe, inspiring and fun. We see them progress so fast.” The long and stunning main beach of Whangamata offers many waves for all levels of surfing. When the swell is right, the famous “Whanga Bar” comes to life and surfers can enjoy the endless, perfect left handers. “Progression is so important when learning to surf, it’s not easy and takes time,” says Kat. “You learn by feeling the right moment, timing and movements, continually and repeatedly. With regular lessons and a good coach you will also build confidence and awareness.” NZ Surf N Stay’s surf packages can also combine surfing, yoga, equipment and accommodation. They also offer island tours with kayaks or stand up paddle boards to one of the best kept secrets of the Coromandel, Whenuakura (commonly known as Donut Island). Website: surfnstaynewzealand.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/NZsurfnstay Address: 227 Beverly Terrace, Whangamata

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Outback Surf and S’UP School will be set up from December 26, 2018 to January 31, 2019 and can be found at beach access 6 to the right of the Pauanui Surf Club, or at beach access 12 – accessible from Mountain Vista Place (site varies depending on conditions). Group or private lessons are available for children, adults, tourists and corporate groups, providing a safe and enjoyable lesson for any standard of surfer or paddle boarder, run by qualified ISA instructor Hayden Roe. Beginners can get started with a one-hour intro to surfing or book a three-stage lesson plan covering surf safety and etiquette, prone to standing; paddling and traversing waves – i.e. riding along the white wash forehand and backhand. These lessons are all done in waist depth water and are the perfect introduction to surfing. Pauanui Beach is a great place to learn to surf as it’s reasonably flat, with a very gradual slope towards the sea, Hayden says. “Throughout the summer months the swells are generally smaller making Pauanui the ideal place to learn to surf in a safe environment.” Lessons can be booked at the beach or at the Outback Surf Shop in the Pauanui Shopping Centre. Board and wetsuit hire is available and the Outback team also offer guided SUP tours. Website: www.outbacksurf.co.nz Facebook: www.facebook.com/outbacksurfshop Address: Shop 13, 54 Jubilee Drive, Pauanui Beach

Hot Water Beach Surf School HOT WATER BEACH

Lessons and equipment hire are available from 1 November – 31 March. Contact the school on 021 421 649 or visit www.hotwaterbeachsurf.com

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The Coromandel is surrounded by great surf beaches. Grab a lesson with one of our accomplished local surf schools and you might just find you learn much more than how to stand up on a surfboard.

Te Puia Surf Co. HOT WATER BEACH

Te Puia Surf Co. is a locally owned and operated by a few local surfers wanting to spread their passion for surfing and share their beautiful piece of coastline. Te Puia Surf Co. is a seasonal business and operates during New Zealand’s warmer months, generally from November through to April. The company sets up their base in the car park known as ‘middle car park’ in Hot Water Beach.. Hot Water Beach is a must see destination when travelling New Zealand, this means they meet and teach people from all walks of life, from the far stretches of the world.

Surf Coromandel MATARANGI

The team at Surf Coromandel, located in Matarangi at the Village Green Reserve, believe learning to surf is one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences you can have with nature, no matter what your age or ability, there is a wave out there for everyone. Coaches and partners Kayne Duncan and Fleur Blackie have been coaching for more than five years in Whitianga, Raglan, Piha, Port Waikato, Kerotahi and Waipu Cove supporting Surfing NZ ‘have a go day’ programmes. “I enjoy teaching the grommies in the area and seeing them excited to progress their surfing, it keeps me young,” Kayne says. They offer beginner and private lessons all year round as well as after school and school holiday programmes in Term 1 and 4. They also host a yearly amateur competition for the ‘groms’ (children). In the peak season (December/ January) they have three lessons a day 9am, 12pm and 3pm. Surf Coromandel is Surfing NZ-approved with all instructors qualified as coaches with current first aid and bronze medallion beach lifeguard awards. “Usually there is always a small wave which is ideal for learning. The break in Matarangi is one of the best spots to learn because it’s safe as it gradually tapers off, which means the waves break further out and gives us the ability to teach more skills such as paddling and catching your own unbroken wave,” Fleur says.

Hot Water Beach is what surfers would call a ‘swell magnet’; there are almost always waves to be surfed. The beach is mainly sand bottomed with small clusters of rocks in certain areas. As the waves push in and wash out, sand bars and shallow areas are shaped and formed. These sand bars offer quality waves for surfers all along the beach. The shallow areas are often the places where beginners choose to learn to surf as it’s comforting to know you are able to stand up when you’re learning. Hot Water Beach is a great place to learn to surf as it has all the essential ingredients with the bonus of a natural hot pool afterwards. Website: www.tepuiasurf.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/Tepuiasurf Address: Domain Road – Hot Water Beach

TOP TIPS FROM

2) Good gear. Make sure you have the right board for you and a good wetsuit so you can surf all year round and not get cold.

Whangamata local and pro-surfer Ella Williams shares her top tips on learning to surf:

3) Observe. Watch as many surf videos as you can. When I’m not in the water this is how I spend a lot of my free time because you can then visualise and use these to inspire you to surf better.

Ella Williams 1) Persistence. Keep at it – it gets easier the more time you spend in the water.

Website: www.surfcoromandel.co.nz Facebook: www.facebook.com/surfcoromandel Address: The Village Green Reserve at the end of Kenwood Drive, Matarangi.

4) Ask for advice. If you know of someone that surfs or you see someone in the line-up out in the water, ask them questions. Or take a lesson. Knowledge is power and the more you know the better you will be. 5) HAVE FUN! Follow Ella’s surfing journey www.facebook.com/ellawilliamssurfer

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A DV E RTO RI A L

Tairua Marina sits nestled at the foot of Paku Hill ; perfectly positioned on the harbour’s edge, but protected from the ocean swell .

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ver summer, its 95 boat berths are full with small fizz boats through to large leisure craft coming and going from some of the best boating and fishing spots in the country, found right on the doorstep. In the heart of the precinct, the Marina Villas provide stylish dwellings in a boutique, secure complex and, with easy access to nearby berths, the perfect boating lifestyle. The bustling marina hub is home to boat charters, marine shop Dutchy’s and the onsite brewery for Paku Bay Brewing Co. Upstairs, guests dine on the balcony of the Marina Bar and Grill restaurant, overlooking the sparkling waters below. It’s hard to remember the time when this marina complex didn’t exist and this area of Paku Bay was a muddy backwater. The transformation was a long time in-the-making for developer and Watts Group managing director Craig Watts, who first started looking at the marina concept in 1999. It took 14 years to get a resource consent alone, involving an Environment Court battle that caused huge debate in the coastal town. The marina, now a solely-owned subsidiary of Watts Group, was eventually completed in 2014 offering 95 berths of varying lengths of between 8.4m and 25m and petrol and diesel facilities. Today the commercial hub is fully tenanted, with a location and view that Craig suggests boasts the best office space in the country. The first two stages of the Marina Villas were finished in 2017 offering 12 two-storey luxury dwellings, each with three or four bedrooms and double garages, built to maximize the north and west-facing views across

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the harbour. Two of the villas are boat sheds with direct access into the marina and off-water storage for the boats. Construction is expected to start in 2019 on a third stage of villas, bringing the total number of dwellings to 20. Villas in this stage range from $1.25 million to $1.45 million and are on sale now. Craig, who first bought a property in Tairua in 1985, had a strong belief in what this exciting development could offer, and his vision kept him pushing through the challenges to bring the project to completion. “In the early days, there were more people on the waiting list than we had berths. But as time went by, the global financial crisis stalled the development, and there were lots of issues going on as markets went up and down,” he says. “It would have been easy to give up but we had lots of supporters within Tairua and its surrounds who believed in what we were doing so we carried on.” Craig credits long-time Tairua developer Jim Mason for the original vision for the marina, which they achieved through a joint venture. It’s a triumph to see the marina full and Craig says he’s particularly proud of how the precinct fits well within the corner of the harbour. “It looks good and it’s an attractive place to go and visit. It’s hard to find someone with a nasty thing to say about it and I believe it will continue to become a popular precinct for people to enjoy.” Craig is now busy with the ‘Pauanui Green’ development in Tairua’s neighbouring town of Pauanui, being built by Watts Group affiliate Green Homes NZ. The $12 million development will offer architecturally designed, ecofriendly homes in the peaceful resort town. There are 16 sections of more than 600m2 to choose from, positioned nearby the Pauanui Waterways and adjoining the Lakes golf course. More information: www.tairuamarina.co.nz l

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M AA GG AA ZZ II N N EE M

22 00 11 88 -- 22 00 11 99


WATERS EDGE, LUXURY LIVING

Tairua Marinas & Villas Available Now

Craig Watts 021 922 936 Stephanie Watts 021 522 937

THE MARINA, TAIRUA www.tairuamarina.co.nz


GOLF

GETAWAY COROMANDEL In today’s fast-paced world, golf provides an ideal opportunity for some time-out in magnificent surroundings and it’s a great way to spend time with friends and family.

And what better place to play than on the courses found on some of the Coromandel’s most beautiful coastal locations?

The Thames-Coromandel District offers a range of golfing experiences: Our country nine-hole courses where the dress code is casual are the ideal environment to learn the game or hone your skills with friends. We also have a number of 18-hole resort courses offering a more traditional golfing experience, where collared shirts and challenging layouts are the norm. Joining a golf club is a great way to engage with the local community, meet people and play as often as you like, in a cost-effective manner. All local clubs allow casual access to their courses too, subject to availability. It’s usually fairly easy to access the courses, except for in the peak holiday seasons when it’s a good idea to contact the club and book your round. For the rest of the year however, tranquillity and birdsong is all part of the experience. Coaching is on offer at some of the clubs, but with a limited number of PGA professional coaches based in the area, this is often provided by volunteers. As golf tourism continues to grow across the country, the Coromandel is attracting its share of players. NZ Golf statistics record more than 75,000 rounds of visitor golf played in the Thames-Coromandel district in 2017, and with a large number of those rounds played in the summer holiday periods.

The Dunes Golf Resort, Matarangi.

1. Thames Golf Club: An attractive 18-hole course featuring flat, tree-lined fairways interwoven with fairways on more challenging terrain. Location: SH 36 Thames (7 km from Thames Paeroa side of Kopu) Course: 18 hole Green Fee: From $30 18 holes – bookings not required Membership: Contact club for membership options Website: www.sporty.co.nz/thamesgolfclub/home

2. Coromandel Golf Club: Location: Hauraki Rd, Coromandel Town Course: 9 holes Green Fee: $25 per round (9 or 18 holes) No need to book Membership: $215.00 first year membership (other options on the website) Website: www.sporty.co.nz/coromandelgolfclub/home Visitor comments: “Hidden gem”, “delightful course” and “picturesque setting”

3. The Dunes Golf Resort: Originally designed by New Zealand golfing legend Sir Bob Charles, The Dunes Golf Resort is a true golfing experience. The course is set in beautiful surroundings, bordering the tranquil Whangapoua Harbour and the beautiful four kilometre sandy Matarangi Beach, with sea and harbour views from most holes. Location: Matarangi Drive, Matarangi Course: 18 hole resort Green Fee: From $65 – bookings required Membership: Contact club for membership options Website: www.thedunes.co.nz/golf

4. Mercury Bay Golf Club: The course is set in a beautiful park-like setting, with an abundance of native trees and birds. Location: 12 Golf Rd, Whitianga Course: 18 hole Green Fee: From $30 18 holes Check website for up to date

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green fee offers. Bookings preferred Membership: $15 per week for full playing. Contact club for other membership options. Website: www.mercurybaygolf.co.nz

5. Purangi Golf Club: A 9-hole country-styled golf course at the base of attractive rolling farmland, only minutes from the popular holiday destinations of Cooks Beach, Hot Water Beach and Hahei. Location: 6 Hepburn Road Purangi Course: 9-hole country style Green Fee: $20 per day – bookings not required Full Membership: $495 (Check website for other options) Website: www.purangigolf.co.nz

6. Tairua Country Club: A challenging full 18-hole golf course set amongst the hills with natural water features and adjacent to the Tairua estuary. The club also has four standard golf croquet lawns. Location: 283 Main Rd Tairua Course: 18 hole Green Fee: From $25 (18 holes), Golf carts, clubs and trundlers available for hire (bookings recommended). Golf lessons available with our PGA professional (bookings recommended) Membership: Range of membership options available. Check website or contact our club manager. Website: www.tairuacountryclub.co.nz

7. Lakes Resort: This course is nestled in a valley setting and meanders its way through picturesque natural native wetlands and lakes. Location: 100 Augusta Dr, Pauanui (off Hikuai Settlement Rd) Course: 18 hole championship course Green Fee: From $49.00. Check website for up to date green fee offers. Bookings required Membership: Contact club for membership options. Website: www.lakesresort.com

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Falling in love with Coromandel golf courses

Golf and the holidays just seem to go together – especially when the weather isn’t quite right for fishing or the beach. NZ Golf regional support manager for Waikato Mark Webb says the Coromandel is becoming a popular destination for golf, particularly among casual golfing groups from Auckland visiting for a weekend ‘golf trail’.

Every summer Mr Suzuki and his friends hire a bach in Whangamata, take out a summer membership with the Whangamata Golf Club, then proceed to wear out their clubs playing every day. The local members enjoy the energy and enthusiasm of their Japanese friends, and they are becoming more and more involved in the club. Golf in many countries round the world is prohibitive. Courses are crowded and expensive and if you want to become a member, you’d better hope that your father put your name down when you were born. The golfing experience in New Zealand is of course very different, which is why more and more ‘Mr Suzuki’s’ are falling in love with our New Zealand golf courses.

“For example, they’ll drive down and have a round of golf at Thames, then drive to Whangamata and play two courses from there before heading off on Sunday,” Mr Webb says. “It suits them because it’s so close to Auckland and for everything else the Coromandel offers – the scenery of course and places to eat and drink.” But for the most part, Coromandel golf courses fly under-the-radar. “It’s a hidden gem. There’s such a great variety of courses, that’s the beauty of it. You can play a championship course at Matarangi and then nine holes in Coromandel Town the next day.” There are 10 golf clubs to choose from in the Coromandel – as shown on the following map. Enjoy your round. l

THAMES – COROMANDEL DISTRICT Service centre District boundary Port Charles

0

10

20 km

Little Bay Mercury Islands Colville

Whangamata Golf Course – Titoki Course. Photography: John McCombe

Tuateawa Waitete Bay

8. Pauanui Golf Club:

Kennedy Bay Papaaroha

Oamaru Bay Kikowhakarere Bay

3 Whangapoua

2

Wyuna Bay

Two beautifully appointed three and four-par golf courses, each offering its own set of differing challenges. Each course can be played as 9 or 18 holes or play both courses “combined” for the ultimate 18 hole Pauanui golf experience. Location: 31 Sheppard Ave, Pauanui Beach Course: 2 x 9 hole courses – ‘Pines’ and ‘Lakes’ Green Fee: $20 9 holes $25 18 holes Bookings required summer months Membership: Contact club for membership details Website: www.pauanuiclub.co.nz

Otama Opito

Kuaotunu

Rings Beach Matarangi Te Rerenga

Coromandel

25

4

Te Kouma

5

Wharekaho Beach Ferry Landing

COR

Manaia

Whitianga

9. Whangamata Golf Club – Titoki Course: 25

AN

Whenuakite

Coroglen

DE

Waikawau

Hahei

Hot Water Beach

OM

25

Cooks Beach

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Te Mata Tapu

RA

Tairua

NG

Ruamahunga Waiomu

Pauanui

7

E

Te Puru

8

Thornton Bay Ngarimu Bay Hikuai

Whakatete Bay

1

Tararu

Opoutere

THAMES

25A

Onemana

Totara

10

Kopu

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9 25 2 0 1 8 - 2 0 1 9 Whangamata

25 Puriri

This highly scenic and challenging 18-hole course provides an unforgettable country golfing experience ensuring differing options off every tee. The Wentworth River winds through the course adding to both the golfing challenge and scenic experience. Location: 2845 Waihi Rd Whangamata Course: 18 hole Green Fee: From $35 18 holes – bookings required Membership: Check website for membership options Website: www.whangamatagolf.net.nz

10. Whangamata Golf Club – Williamson Course: Located in the centre of town this beautifully groomed 9-hole course is ideal for anyone wanting to have a hit, with enough challenges in to make any player want to return to master it. Location: 421 Achilles Ave, Whangamata Course: 9 hole ideal casual/learner Green Fee: $15 – summer bookings required Membership: Check website for membership options Website: www.whangamatagolf.net.nz

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Off the beaten track

at Tangiaro Lodge There’s something about getting off the beaten track . It can soothe the soul , and feed it too, as the trappings of urban life fall away.

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erhaps that’s why some people eschew the busy pace of the Coromandel’s white-sand beaches and boutiques, choosing instead to escape further north to Tangiaro Lodge, nestled in the bush beneath majestic Mount Moehau. This hankering for a simpler life, if only for a day or a week, is bringing increasing numbers of visitors to this place, just a few kilometres from Port Charles. It’s no surprise to anyone who has ventured there, and certainly not to owners Bruce and Anne Clegg, who established Tangiaro 13 years ago, or to Peter and Jeanette McCracken who have managed it since December 2017. Tangiaro Lodge – the new name for Tangiaro Kiwi Retreat – was born out of the Cleggs’ desire to share with others the beauty of their 323-hectare paradise. They bought the land in 2000 and promptly set about protecting the lion’s share of it through the QE II Natural Trust. You see, this is home to one of the Coromandel’s biggest populations of the precious North Island kiwi on privately-owned land. Not to mention Hochsetter’s frog, pateke, weta, centipedes, Archey’s frog, kereru, tui, kaka, bellbird, fantail and banded rail. Programmes are in place to protect these, along with the stunning flora: kauri, rata, nikau, silver fern, mamaku, medicinal herbs, kawakawa, koromiko and harakeke. When Bruce and Anne first saw Tangiaro, they wanted to protect its natural beauty for future generations. It was only later that they decided to share it. In 2005, after much blood, sweat – and a few tears – they opened their “eco retreat” to guests. It has steadily expanded over the past 13 years to the point where it can now accommodate more than 60 people, and more chalets are planned. Summer is the busiest time at Tangiaro as people seek a romantic getaway, or an escape from the city, or a family holiday, or to tie the knot. Some come for just a day, enjoying lunch at the café; perhaps a bush walk, a swim, or just to see for themselves what is a little ways off the long and winding road that links Colville to Port Charles. What they find is the reason the lodge has claimed for itself the first half of US motivational speaker Zig Ziglar’s famous saying: “Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations. The best is yet to come.” Here, the little Tangiaro River trickles quietly through bush; birdsong, water and breeze-ruffled trees the only

Peter and Jeanette McCracken have taken the helm at Tangiaro.

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Kereru – wood pigeons – are one of the many native species thriving.

sounds. An inviting natural water hole lies beneath a little waterfall. Explore the silver mines along the way, wetas and all. Tangiaro is also close to beaches, fertile fishing grounds, renowned walkways and mountain biking tracks. And if you time it right, there is the opportunity to join a twiceyearly kiwi experience walk with Moehau Environment Group, which oversees the welfare of Tangiaro’s wild kiwi, estimated to number more than 50. Three of these are electronically monitored and their health checked as part of a programme funded by Tangiaro and open to inhouse guests and the public when spaces are available. The more faint of heart can treat themselves to a massage, or lie back in a hot bush spa under the stars, or just chill out on the deck of a little


chalet and listen to the birds, then wander down to the restaurant when hunger bites and enjoy Peter’s home-cooked food and perhaps a bottle of Stony Creek Craft Beer, brewed on site by local builder-turned-brewer Hug. He’s got a name, but Hug’ll do; everyone has a nickname here. Peter is in charge of the kitchen, bringing his donkey’s years of experience as a chef to the only eatery north of Colville. He and Jeanette were looking for a new challenge, “something to get our teeth into”, after managing a ski lodge in the South Island, and found it at Tangiaro. He’d never been to the Coromandel Peninsula, and Tangiaro is the smallest place they have ever worked, “but we love it; it’s beautiful”. The couple are relishing the opportunity to take the place in a more commercial direction, which included changing the name. “It was quite deceiving; many people saw ‘kiwi retreat’ and thought they could come and cuddle a kiwi. It led to misunderstandings,” Peter explains. Now, with the full support of the Cleggs, the McCrackens are focusing on the accommodation and functions side of the business, which they see as its strength. It’s early days, but they doubled the guest nights in their first summer season, and some first-timers booked again for this summer before they left, and are bringing friends back with them. Weddings are a focus too; they have at least six booked for summer 2018/2019. Day trippers are always welcome, of course, and the café is busy over summer as bach owners in the area drop in for lunch. All this translates to jobs, too, with up to 10 people needed to run the lodge over the busy summer season. Top: Tangiaro Stream leads www.kiwiretreat.co.nz l

to a waterhole popular with swimmers in the summer. Middle: The café caters to both in-house guests and day trippers. Bottom: Four spa pools nestle in a bush setting.

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A DVERTORIAL

The Harcourts Pauanui team: (L to R) Tylah Dix (administrator), Katie Wardenburg (salesperson), Alyce Rowe (sales consultant and business owner).

Next generation Pauanui When Alyce Rowe was approached almost three year s ago to open a Harcourts franchise in Pauanui she thought, “why not?”.

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ast forward to 2018 and her Harcourts Pauanui office branding “We were the new kids on the block, the next generation. adorns a black mini-convertible with license plate Da Grls, The opportunity to start something fresh was great,” says Alyce. and together with salesperson Katie Wardenburg they’ve sold Alyce says the big drawcard to Pauanui is the lifestyle. Katie almost $40 million in property. walks Mount Pauanui regularly and Alyce likes to cycle the “Harcourts approached me, they knew my family had a place here Pauanui cycle trail. and I loved coming here so I thought, why not?” Sometimes they paddleboard around the canals. Alyce’s partner It didn’t take much to convince Katie, who was also working in Thames, Connor Hayward works as a builder in the area and with building to make the leap with Alyce and move to Pauanui to open the office. picking up in Pauanui, Katie’s partner Tate Maxwell is now building Alyce says many in the industry thought the girls were game to take in the area having been commuting to Thames for the first few years. on a national franchise in a small town, but Alyce has also become involved in the Alyce says the biggest challenge was getting the community through the Pauanui Club, message out that Harcourts was back. “People where she’s on the board. Along with “We were the new kids on the block, Pauanui Supervalue, Harcourts Pauanui now know we’re here and we’re already starting to get repeat business.” helped sponsor comedian Urzila Carlson the next generation. Harcourts previously had a base in Pauanui to the club for a comedy night which THE OPPORTUNITY about 10 years ago and until the girls raised funds for the Pauanui arrived, a dominant player had a firm hold Pre-school. TO START SOMETHING on the market. Soon after arriving, Alyce “I think it’s really important to be able to FRESH WAS GREAT…” purchased the trademark mini and they got give back to the community that we’re now Tylah Dix on board as their administrator. a big part of.” l

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For a fresh-faced approach to the real estate market in Pauanui call the Next Generation Pauanui team today!

Pauanui Shop 21, Pauanui Centre, Pauanui Beach 07 280 0678 pauanui@harcourts.co.nz www.pauanui.harcourts.co.nz

Coromandel Beaches Realty Ltd Licensed Agent REAA 2008


Still dreaming big at

T he Lost

Spring

Alanna Kline has taken the reins at Whitianga’s spa resort The Lost Spring, building on her father’s vision with some great plans of her own.

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black and white photo of an old school house hangs in the foyer of Whitianga’s resort spa, The Lost Spring. You’d almost miss it amongst plush red and grey robes and cosily arranged seating overlooking tropical gardens and a steaming pool. It’s an illustration however of what can be achieved by people with big dreams and a little bit of crazy to boot. The building is the old Mercury Bay Primary School. A building saved by The Lost Spring founders, Alan and Trudi Hopping, and the same building that now serves as the entrance to the geothermal pools, day spa and restaurant. Alan’s daughter Alanna Kline says the building was moved onto the site when it was nothing more than a paddock with a few willows.

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The land was part of the Buffalo Beach Resort, a campground which Alanna’s parents took over in 1980. “When the school was closed, and they sold the land, my parents bought the building and moved it here. They saved it.” Then Alan got the idea that there was hot water under the ground. They employed diviners to use the ancient art and locate the spring, which they found in 1989, after it was thought lost for generations. Hot water now rises into the pools from 667m below the surface, through a small crack in the bedrock. Inspired by the likes of Walt Disney, Alan scrawled plans for his resort on a piece of paper and then spent 23 years building The Lost Spring from the ground up. It’s for that reason Alanna is reluctant to talk about taking over as chief executive of The Lost Spring. “Dad had this vision and he’s pretty much stuck to it. This is his creation, his love, his passion, so I would say it’s a partnership and not a take-over.” Alanna returned to Whitianga, from Florida, two years ago with her husband Jonathan and two children Noah (9) and Annabelle (7). It was with the intent of working with her dad. “Dad has been on site every day for the last 10 years. It’s a 24-hour job. We constantly manage the water. We have between 35 and 40 staff employed year-round. It’s a lot to manage.” And it’s a world away from the 23 years she spent managing super yachts with Jonathan. “In yachting you don’t have to turn a profit. Yachting is not good business,” she laughs. The couple did manage large budgets however and large crews and she says her passion is business and hospitality. “It was an amazing lifestyle, but I felt like this is where I was always supposed to be.” Jonathan now divides his time between captaining super yachts and living in Whitianga. “Sailing is his first love, that really is his

Now it’s her turn to add her own touch. Alanna is also back because “I think that’s the thing. The pools were built over such a DEEP DOWN IT’S WHAT SHE long-time people and didn’t ALWAYS WANTED TO DO. really understand the concept and they were suspicious of it. We were the first pool in New Zealand you could drink alcohol in. And this idea that it was a haven for adults and not children; I think some people still struggle with that.” However, in the last year 60,000 visitors came through the doors and now, Alanna says, they arrive with a look of anticipation. “It’s something our guests have been planning and looking forward to. We have a lot of proposals. It’s become a retreat for people and special in many The Lost Spring founder Alan Hopping and different ways.” daughter Alanna Kline. She says it’s taking time to adjust to life passion, and he knows this is mine,” in a small town again, but she can see an Alanna says. exciting future. Her decision to come home was also Engineers have just lodged permits for reinforced after the mass-shooting at another tree-top bure and clamshell pool, Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High, offering an exclusive spa experience. where 17 students and teachers were killed They are also looking to develop their happy in February 2018. hour on Fridays and bring in more music and “We saw the effects on friends’ children. artists as part of the experience. “We have These kids do real drills a couple of times a great plans too for this summer for holidayyear. That’s a stress you really don’t want to put weary parents.” on your kids.” Alanna speaks with real pride of the region Alanna is also back because deep down it’s and her father’s achievements. what she always wanted to do. “The Coromandel is an amazing place. “I remember as a family visiting Disneyland There’s all these slightly crazy, quirky people and Magic Mountain. Dad returned home who have created these amazing experiences. intent on building his own mountain I’m really proud to include dad as part of After, I remember being up on scaffolding, that group. surrounded by chicken wire, creating moulds “In these times I think a little crazy is very for what became a volcano.” important in any community and to all I would Alanna eventually went away to boarding say, don’t be afraid to go out there and do school and then overseas and each time she something a little bit different, a little bit crazy, returned her father had added some other and dream big.” dimension to the property. thelostspring.co.nz l

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PROFILE

World-class sailor

takes the helm

Whether he’s at the pointy end of an America’s Cup or Whitbread Round the World yacht, helping to drive Japan’s America’s Cup campaign, or sailing for a New York-owned syndicate, Jeremy Lomas is still a Kiwi boy who calls Hahei home. “Wherever we travel, we’ve always called Hahei home and we always consider ourselves New Zealanders,” he says.

When Our Coromandel meets with Jeremy, the world-class sailor is wearing a silver fern t-shirt and says a friendly hello to commuters waiting for the ferry at the Whitianga wharf. Jeremy and wife Louise took over the Whitianga Ferry business from Fred Acke in March this year. Soon after they took on the business, he was off sailing again and had recently flown home from Croatia. “I was sailing TP52s with a bunch of Kiwis for a US owner,” he says. Jeremy, considered one of the world’s best bowmen, had just finished a TP52 Grand Prix regatta in Croatia sailing for Sled, which is headed by the New York Yacht Club’s Takashi Okura. He’d been sailing against the likes of old Team New Zealand counterpart Dean Barker, who sails for the New York-based Quantum Racing. Jeremy certainly displays typical Kiwi modesty. While the TP52s are a step down from the America’s Cup supercars of the yachting world, they are still considered by some as part of the build-up for a cup campaign. Jeremy,

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however, is adamant his Cup days are over.

“I’ve always earned my living from sailing and I’m getting older, so I had been looking for a new opportunity for a long time.” Cue the Whitianga Ferry business which carries passengers daily from Whitianga towards the place he calls home at Hahei.

“This came up and it was perfect really. We always had the ambition to come back here and settle down, then this opportunity came along.” Jeremy grew up in Thames and learned how to handle boats at the Thames Sailing Club in Tararu. He sailed alongside Grant Dalton in the Whitbread Round the World Race, campaigned four times with Team New Zealand and was lured to sail for Japan, alongside Barker, in the 2017 America’s Cup. “It was while we took some time out after the last America’s Cup that this opportunity came up. It felt like the right time to come home.” Jeremy has always had a strong connection to Mercury Bay. As a kid he holidayed in the house opposite the Whitianga wharf, now known as Harbour House Café. Jeremy bought a property with his mother in Hahei in 2000, and in 2007, before the America’s Cup in Valencia, he and Louise bought a property at Hahei. “We came here to get away as a family (with children Jake and Chelsea), before the Cup campaign,” he says. Jake (10) and Chelsea (12) are now back at Whenuakite School where they started. “It’s really nice to see them back here. We love it here,” says Louise. Both children do a lot of sport so there’s

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always lots of travelling to practices and games. While Jeremy says he won’t do another America’s Cup he will still carry on with top class sailing which happens over the New Zealand winter. His plan works well for the new business. He’s away in the quieter season, and home for when the busy summer season starts. He says the couple are lucky to have longstanding, experienced ferry drivers who are well-liked by the community and who have helped bring them up to speed with the business. “We’re aware there’s a lot of history that goes with this business. It’s a part of the Mercury Bay community and its identity. It’s probably one of the most iconic businesses in the Coromandel really.” Louise manages a lot of the day-to-day running while Jeremy is away. “I was saying to her the other day, it really seems like it’s her business now,” says Jeremy. As Louise was standing waiting for the ferry recently, she discovered just how closely she is linked to the ferry’s history. Captain Ranulph Dacre, who established the wharf at Ferry Landing, was Louise’s greatgreat-great-grandfather. “It wasn’t until I was hanging around waiting for the ferry one day that I saw a plaque about the history of the area. He commissioned the wharf to be built in the 1800s.” “It was a really nice connection for us to make,” says Louise. l

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ADV ERTO RIA L

Living the lifestyle in your

GOLDEN YEARS By Leigh Hopper

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Much attention has been given to the topic of retirement and growing older of l ate, and it would appear that the term “elderly ” is no longer PC.

’d have to agree. At 63, I’m fit and can still do most of the activities I enjoyed in my twenties – it just takes me a little longer to do them, and a longer time to recover too. I certainly don’t consider myself old, but I am getting near to the ‘active retiree’ phase of life, where one looks forward to kicking back a little to enjoy the activities we like with a better worklife balance. I will still spend some time in the office and my home office, and am still adequately connected to the team at Hoppers HQ. I don’t see myself slowing down as such, but there’s been a shift around what, when and where I choose to do things, while still making a positive ongoing contribution to my work. I have made a ‘life plan’ and I intend to achieve it, which has required a move to one of the best places I know in the world – Whitianga. Admittedly, I have an interest in the area through Hopper Developments, but despite that, I have yet to find another place that best fits my lifestyle and the things I enjoy most. I have been fortunate to orchestrate and see the evolution of Whitianga Waterways and, moreover, I look forward to seeing the future plans come to fruition for what will undoubtedly become one of, if not the most desirable coastal location in New Zealand. Whitianga Waterways is nearly a third of the way through its master plan, and within the next few years we will see the development of some exciting new components that confirm that this is where I want to spend my retirement. And by accounts of recent demand for properties within the development, more and more people share this view. In the future as retail, commercial, hotel, marine, air transport, medical, professional and retirement services roll out in Whitianga, I and others who have discovered this wonderful place will be able to enjoy a lifestyle second to none. Gone will be the days of being gridlocked in city traffic, or rising before daylight and

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“I’m looking forward to getting to know my neighbours, making new friends, socialising,

TRAMPING THE MAGNIFICENT COROMANDEL GREAT OUTDOORS …” getting home after dark, with no time for breakfast, lunch at the office desk and getting home too late for dinner. I’m looking forward to getting to know my neighbours, making new friends, socialising, tramping the magnificent Coromandel great outdoors, much more boating, fishing and diving and perhaps most of all, relaxing and making the most of my new canal-front property and the diversity of the waterways environment. I intend to make the next 15 to 20 years the best years of my life and I see no reason why they should not be. Where else can offer such an amazing environment to do so?

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At some point in future, inevitably, the body and perhaps the mind will degenerate. Hopefully I’ll be satisfied with my life’s lot, however I do not expect the good times to stop there. Over the last 12 years our team has been honing their talents in the design of retirement villages in Maygrove Orewa, The Anchorage Marsden Cove, Country Club Huapai and Marlin Waters Whitianga, under our retirement lifestyle brand ‘Hopper Living’. The “life plan” will see yet another phase – a move into the Whitianga waterfront retirement village to be called ‘The Moorings’. I am regularly confronted by residents in our Maygrove village at Orewa, where they constantly espouse the values of Maygrove’s village life. We now have three other villages under development. You can bet the Moorings will offer its residents the best lifestyle available for that stage of life, and should I or my partner ever need a higher level of care it will be readily available. Friends and family might have to slip in the odd G&T at that point. Ain’t life grand. I wouldn’t be dead for quids! Leigh Hopper is the managing director of Hopper Developments. l

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D I S C O VER T H E P R E MIE R

W A TE RW

Whitianga Waterways is destined to become the most desirable coastal location in New Zealand. This stunning development home to New Zealand’s first man-made residential island offers a lifestyle like no other, with future plans to include a new dockside retail area,100+ room hotel and marine precinct it will ensure a growing and prosperous community. Whitianga Waterways the ultimate lifestyle. Sections priced from $285,000 Canal front sections from $630,000

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AY S L I FESTY L E

Pauanui Waterways is renowned as the home of premier canal front lifestyle in New Zealand. Pauanui now offers something special within the waterways community, the exclusive and stylish villas in The Quays. New villas are under construction now with an anticipated completion late 2018 and early 2019. These desirable 4 bedroom stand-alone homes are for sale now. Completed villas from $1,630,000 Limited canal front sections from $820,000

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Championing

the Coromandel’s economy The Thames-Coromandel region is a wonderful area to live, work and visit. I moved here to take up the role of chief executive of Thames-Coromandel District Council (TCDC) in 2016, and I’m very proud and honoured to call this beautiful pl ace home.

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also feel very positive about the opportunities for our region. It’s a great place to do business – full of innovative people with cando attitudes – and it’s a place that others outside the region are recognising as a great place to invest in. Our Council takes an active approach to economic development and growth, from supporting new start-ups and entrepreneurs through to encouraging large, established companies to invest in or set up operations here.

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There are exciting projects happening in key industries across the region, supported by new developments in infrastructure and facilities. Local engineering business Kopu Engineering is one example I’d call out as a great, home-grown success story that’s investing in our region and the next-generation. Run by brothers Vaughan and Andrew Austen, Kopu Engineering has a strong reputation for problem solving among the local dairy and heavy transport industries, and this year entered the marine industry after building a specialty trailer to bring a 90-tonne mussel barge to its local yard. At the same time, the business has an eye on the future, employing six local apprentices in 2018. Our resident population in the Coromandel continues to thrive, as do the number of visitors. Our resident population has swelled to 29,000, while our visitor industry continues to expand as we attract greater numbers of international visitors to our district. We certainly punch above our weight here, with our gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate outpacing that of the New Zealand economy. Economics consultancy Infometrics estimates GDP in ThamesCoromandel was $1,092 million for the year to June 2018. That’s 3.3% higher than the same time last year, representing our most rapid growth rate in three years. Our annual growth also exceeded that of the wider Waikato region (2.6%) and New Zealand as a whole (2.7%). We can also be proud of our low unemployment rate. Averaging 2.8% across the June 2018 year, unemployment is at a 10-year low. The data and the vision is positive. However, there are a number of challenges facing our region, and more investment is always needed to support innovation in our local economy and to make the most of the opportunities available to us. That’s why I’m really excited about the new Waikato regional economic development agency ‘Te Waka’, which launched in July 2018. I had the privilege of being appointed to the establishment board of this new entity, which fills a much-needed role in helping to advance collaboration within the Waikato region, in order to move us to the next level of economic and social prosperity. Te Waka aims to be the “front door” for the region (which includes us) and is influential by helping tell the Waikato’s story, lobby government and business movers and shakers, and to attract interest our way. It’s important to take a collaborative approach to get our voice heard and build a stronger, more resilient regional economy, and I’m confident that Te Waka will help do that for us. On our own, it’s hard to have impact. So, being part of this new economic development agency will help our Council, and the wider Waikato region, have a stronger collective voice in Wellington and to get our share of funding from investors and available government funds such as the Tourism Infrastructure Fund and the Provincial Growth Fund. Unfortunately in the past, without this sort of regional voice, we’ve suffered. We’ve had low investment over the years, particularly in terms of our state highways and internal roads. We are within a two-hour drive from Auckland (and the airport),

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what our youngsters would like to see around the place in years to Tauranga and Hamilton, but key transportation links to our district come, then we will be doing most things that we need to help our need to be much better. economy to grow. With so much potential for tourism and business growth, our state And of course, this growth goes hand-in-hand with social prosperity. highway network needs more investment to make our roads more Ultimately, economic development and job creation will help keep resilient and safer. SH25, SH25A and SH26 are in need of attention, families closer as mums and dads don’t have to leave the area to work, and unsealed roads and single-lane bridges within the region need and our young people have more opportunity to stay here after they upgrading to improve accessibility for visitors and ratepayers, and to leave school. support business enterprise. Our team at TCDC is already very busy helping new and established Investment is needed in other key areas too, to help our already businesses to grow and improve, and thriving industries such as Te Waka gives us another way of aquaculture, which employs 800 supporting regional growth. It people across our region and “WE CERTAINLY PUNCH ABOVE also gives us an opportunity to contributes almost $70 million implement and realise an overarching to GDP. I’d like to see investment OUR WEIGHT HERE, strategic vision developed by leaders, in marine facilities to support with our GDP growth rate outpacing that councils and organisations across the the aquaculture industry. Marine wider region. links to Auckland could position of the New Zealand economy.” It’s an exciting time, and I am sure us as another eastern suburb the benefits will flow our way here in of Auckland, offering access to the Coromandel. l affordable land and housing. Rob Williams is the Chief Executive of the Part of that is getting the right balance between land zoning, land Thames-Coromandel District Council. availability and brown-field regeneration to create affordable housing opportunities for investors and individuals. Have you got some ideas on entrepreneurship for the Coromandel? In the long-term, I’d like to see some serious corporate investment in Email rob.williams@tcdc.govt.nz the district and attract top-tier companies that would, in turn, attract Find out more about our Council’s economic development strategy on other smaller businesses to the area. There is huge potential for a hotel our website: Economic Development Strategy – Towards 2028 or a full-time ferry service, and I hope Te Waka will help us tell the www.tcdc.govt.nz/business story and make the case to attract significant players such as these to the region. To make that happen, we need collaborative, big-picture thinking. Setting up in business? We’re here to help It’s about everyone working together towards a common goal to help our region thrive. It’s about respecting and including all parties – both We want to help keep our local economy buoyant and one of the major large and small business operators, iwi and community groups – to give ways we strive to do this is by supporting new and existing business. voice to our vision. I believe the future is bright and there are opportunities on the If you’re setting up or growing your business, our Council’s economic horizon for our region to thrive, working together under the Te Waka development team is here to help guide you through the steps of any umbrella. It’s also important to acknowledge that Te Waka builds on Council processes that may be required, so you’re not having to deal the hard work, research and legacy of many organisations and people – with lots of different departments, unless it’s absolutely necessary. including folk here in our region. Our staff understand the importance of economic growth to our At the end of the day, economic development is not so much an local community, and the impact the cost of council processes can activity but a mind-set. If we behave in a way that is welcoming, if we have on businesses. work in a way that is friendly, business-focused and open-minded to progress and change, and if we continually ask the questions about We can also help point you to other services that may be critical to your direction, with one of our partners being Waikato Innovation Park, which has a business growth advisor dedicated to the Coromandel. Waikato Innovation Park, providing services under Te Waka, can help provide business mentors, research and development opportunities and free access to the government funding programmes offered by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, Callaghan Innovation and Business Mentors NZ. The Park’s business growth advisors can also facilitate business access to the Food Innovation Network, which provides services and facilities for food manufacturing businesses developing new products. Our economic development team is well-placed to help, and flexible enough to respond to opportunities as they arise. Come and have a chat with one of us. Phone our main office 07 868 0200 or email: • Laurna White – Communications and economic development group manager: laurna.white@tcdc.govt.nz • Y vonne Franklin – Commercial consent planner economic development: yvonne.franklin@tcdc.govt.nz • C olleen Litchfield – Economic development programme manager: colleen.litchfield@tcdc.govt.nz O U R

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Harry and Ruth Harry RuthMikaere, Mikaere: communityadvocates, advocates, community healthservice servicepioneers, pioneers, health marinefarmers farmers marine

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Injecting about $69.6 Injecting $31.4 million million into into the the local local economy economy and and providing providingjobs jobsfor forover over 400 400 locals‌ locals‌ Aquaculture is a vital part partofofthe theCoromandel Coromandel community. community. www.coromfa.co.nz O U R

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Ultra-fast broadband is extending its reach About 3,000 premises in Thames can already connect to super-fast broadband, since Chorus completed the fibre build in June 2018. As part of the Government’s Ultra-Fast Broadband initiative, another 13 communities around the Coromandel will have fibre installed, ready for residents and businesses to connect to, by 2022. “Bring it on!” says our Mayor Sandra Goudie. “Thames is now plugged into the global mainframe at high speed. We’re very excited about how ultra-fast broadband will make a difference for doing business and being connected at home and work.” Fibre is the core technology used in the Government’s UFB initiative. Under this scheme, fibre is installed to the premises, and then those wishing to connect contact their internet service provider to have it brought into their home or business. This connection is generally free in areas where fibre has been installed.

The UFB build schedule: THAMES – build completed June 2018 TE PURU – completion scheduled for April 2019  WAIOMU – completion scheduled for May 2020 TAPU – completion scheduled for March 2020 COROMANDEL TOWN – completion scheduled for January 2020 MATARANGI – completion scheduled for October 2020 WHANGAPOUA – completion scheduled for January 2020 KUAOTUNU – completion scheduled for January 2020 WHITIANGA – completion scheduled for August 2020 FERRY LANDING/COOKS BEACH – completion scheduled for May 2021 HAHEI – completion scheduled for September 2019 TAIRUA-PAUANUI – completion scheduled for March 2022

The advantage of fibre over copper telephone lines is that upload and download speeds are much faster and don’t diminish with distance from the cabinet. You choose what speed of access you want to pay for and that’s what you get – it is not dependent on the quality of the line. Fibre is also one of the most future-proof technologies because you can get faster speeds from fibre as the equipment at each end is updated – no need to replace the fibre cable. “We still would like Hot Water Beach to be included on the UFB build schedule because it’s a huge visitor destination and is in a bit of a network black spot,” Mayor Sandra says. “We’re still lobbying for this to happen while investigating what other solutions could work,” she says. We’d also like other areas, including Wharekaho, more of the Thames Coast and the 309 Road, to have improved broadband and mobile network coverage. These areas and others that aren’t part of the UFB build may benefit from Phase Two of the Government’s Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI) and the Mobile Black Spots Fund. RBI Phase One brought faster broadband to some non-urban areas of the Coromandel through a combination of upgrades to phone lines and new fixed wireless coverage, for example cellphone masts. The Government hasn’t specified a technology for Phase Two, so more of what was delivered in Phase One could be used as well as wireless point-to-point radio links and 4G-based cellular radio technology. The Mobile Black Spots Fund will deliver mobile coverage to a section of the Kopu-Hikuai Road (SH25A), the Coromandel Coastal Walkway and Port Charles. Why the need for (internet) speed? If you stream online video (eg Netflix, Lightbox, YouTube) you’ll probably recognise the benefits of a super-fast broadband connection. You don’t get delays and buffering and multiple people can use the same broadband connection on different devices without performance suffering. Fast broadband also benefits businesses which need their staff to connect to the internet on a regular basis. And there are opportunities for new business models, including working from home or in remote locations, once the internet is delivered quickly and reliably. For more on the Government’s UFB, RBI and Mobile Black Spots Fund go to www.crowninfrastructure.govt.nz

WHANGAMATA – completion scheduled for June 2021 MATATOKI – completion scheduled for March 2020 O U R

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A DVERTORIAL

Year-round welcome for NZMCA members There are many reasons holidaymakers from all over New Zealand flock to the Coromandel all year round – the gorgeous beaches, the unspoilt bush, and the wide variety of activities.

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ew Zealand Motor Caravan Association (NZMCA) members love the area and it’s no wonder. Not only are they spoiled for choice when it comes to parking their certified self-contained motorhomes, they love the welcome they get from the locals. As well as the NZMCA Parks in Coromandel Town and Whitianga, members report how much they enjoy the DOC campsites dotted around the district. One member from the South Island, who travels with three other couples each year, says the decision to set aside several weeks to explore the Coromandel was one of the best decisions they ever made. “Thames-Coromandel had been on our list for a while – it was everything we hoped for,” Kevin says. Because all the motorhomes in the group were certified self-contained, they came across some genuine Kiwi hospitality when a Colville farmer offered them the use of his paddock for several nights. Meeting such helpful locals are some of the best memories the group took away from their trip. “We didn’t encounter any negativity to us as freedom campers in the whole two months we were on the Coromandel. We all take our hats off to the Thames-Coromandel District Council for making areas like this so accessible and user-friendly.”

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Here are spots favoured by NZMCA members – and the reasons they enjoy visiting: • Fantail Bay: It may be known as ‘the fisherman’s campground’ thanks to the great boat launching and deep water close to shore, but the level terrace sites make it ideal for motorhomes and caravans. The sunsets are pretty memorable, too. • Port Jackson: Camping on the water’s edge is always a treat and this camp has great waterfront sites. At the eastern end of the campsite, the Muriwai Coastal Walk leading up the headland towards Wharekaiatua Pa and along the coast, provides stunning coastal views. • Fletcher Bay: The beachfront campground in a farm setting is a favourite for many, thanks to its great fishing, diving and swimming. The Coromandel Coastal Walkway to Stony Bay starts here and offers a three-hour walk (one way) through awesome bush and coastal clifftops. • Stony Bay: This picturesque campsite, with its own beautiful bay ringed with pōhutukawa, and Mt Moehau rising in the background, is particularly spacious. It’s the starting point of the Coromandel Coastal Walkway to Fletcher Bay, as well as the mountain bike track. • Waikawau Bay: “Awesome beach with great fishing,” say members. The powered motorhome sites are popular, as is the store that opens in summer. • Kahikatea Campsite: The Kauaeranga Valley has got it all, and this campsite is all about location. It’s just 20 minutes’ drive from the centre of Thames, less than 90 minutes from both Auckland and Hamilton, and approximately two hours from Tauranga. It’s a great launching pad for a touring holiday. Enjoying the beaches and bush are top of nearly every visitor’s to-do list, but there are several other activities NZMCA members like to recommend to each other. Driving Creek railway is a must, as is the open-cast Waihi Goldmine. The latter can be combined with a ramble through the Karangahake Gorge and the rail tunnel walk. Some activities, such as the ‘bucket list’ Whangamata Beach Hop, require scheduling and a little forward-planning, but the great news is that the Coromandel is a dream destination for NZMCA members all year round. l

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HOME-GROWN COROMANDEL FOOD PRODUCERS RETURNED TO

Omahu Valley Citrus owner Caroline Marriott (left) and daughter Emma Marriott.

THE FOOD SHOW IN AUCKLAND IN JULY 2018, SHOWCASING THE QUALITY AND DIVERSITY OF ARTISAN FOOD PRODUCTS MADE RIGHT HERE ON THE COROMANDEL. Our Council was once again right behind our producers, creating the Coromandel Food Collective exhibition space within the show’s ‘Artisan Village’ for handmade, high-quality goods. The five exhibitors representing the Coromandel Food Collective network in 2018 were: Thames Valley Bacon, Omahu Valley Citrus Products, Mercury Bay Creamery, Chocolates Are Us and Castle Rock Café. The four-day Food Show at the ASB Auckland Showgrounds is the largest food show in New Zealand and in 2018 attracted almost 30,000 food lovers through the doors to keep up with the latest trends in food, stock up on premium, innovative ingredients and to learn to cook like a celebrity chef at home. Our Council’s economic development and communications group manager Laurna White says the Coromandel Food Collective continues to have a strong presence at the show and it creates opportunities for our niche food businesses to network and develop new markets for their product. “The show is a wonderful opportunity for local producers to get their products known further afield and in front of chefs, media and buyers, and to raise the Coromandel’s profile as the pantry of artisan and locally-grown organic produce,” Laurna says. Being involved with the show has also been a great way to promote the Coromandel as a destination for good food. “Food is becoming more and more important for tourism across our district. Increasingly, as people learn about the great, home-grown, fresh artisan products produced right here, it’s becoming another strong reason for people to visit us,” Laurna says. “We have so much to offer in this space with our aquaculture, craft beer, honey and local organic produce.” Our Council created the Coromandel Food Collective network of niche food producers on the Coromandel and supports the collective at the Food Show as part of our economic development strategy. Find out more about the work of the Coromandel Food Collective in our Coromandel Food Trail Guide – one of the most popular downloaded items from our website. www.tcdc.govt.nz/foodtrail

Thames Valley Bacon’s Chelsea Clarke.

Mercury Bay Creamery’s Carl and Jeannette Storey.

Chocolate makers Leanne Peterson and Trevor Stewart from Chocolates Are Us.

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Castle Rock Cafe’s popular dressings and chutneys made by Andy Corles and Margaret Briggs (pictured left).


The five food producers showcased at the 2018 Auckland Food Show were:

Omahu Valley Citrus Products Omahu Valley Citrus is an artisan maker of award-winning citrus products, marmalades, chutneys, cordials and more. Recently, a jar of Omahu Valley’s lemon and ginger marmalade was included in the gift hamper sent to the Queen by Prime Minister Jacinda Adern. All products are preservative-free and made from citrus fruit grown in their own orchards near Puriri. You’ll also find Omahu Valley Citrus at the Thames Market in Grahamstown on a Saturday morning and the products in several other outlets around New Zealand. www.omahuvalleycitrus.co.nz

Thames Valley Bacon Thames Valley Bacon specialises in Manuka-smoked bacons, hams, salamis and their own shop-recipe sausages with gluten-free options, as well as Christmas hams cured, smoked and cooked to perfection. The Matatoki-based business was the overall winner of the 2016 NZ Bacon awards. www.thamesvalleybacon.co.nz

Mercury Bay Creamery Mercury Bay Creamery hand-crafts its organic, artisan cheeses from its own milk supply. Visit the shop, just 1km from the Whitianga township, and you can look through a large viewing window to see the cheeses being made, including Camembert, Brie, merlots, manchegos, feta and butter kaze. Cheese tastings are available Thursday to Sunday. www.mercurybaycreamery.co.nz

Chocolates Are Us Whitianga-based Chocolates Are Us specialises in hand-made chocolates customised with messages or logos for promotions or events. At the show this year the team showcased its small-batch confectionery range, including the best-selling cashew nut brittle with sea salt and the classic coconut rough. See the full range of memorable chocolates created by Chocolates Are Us at the website below: www.chocolatesareus.co.nz

Castle Rock Café Down the road from Whangapoua and the famous New Chum Beach, Castle Rock produces an assortment of dressings and chutneys all made with New Zealand fruit. A new tamarillo and cinnamon dressing was launched at the show, and the hot chilli lime chutney is a particular favourite which, just like all of Castle Rock Cafe products, is packed with flavour and is gluten and preservative-free. www.castlerockcafe.co.nz

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WALKS of Life

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Our Thames-Coromandel district has about 2000 hectares of parks and reserves. Some of this land is under the guardianship of iwi, administered by the Department of Conservation or managed by QE2 covenants or public trusts.

Our Council’s parks and reserves are overseen by a small team of field representatives who are passionate about our environment, our biodiversity and the outdoors. They make sure the upkeep and maintenance of our green spaces is to a high standard, that the playground equipment is safe and the sports fields are in top condition to play on. Here’s a few of our team at some of their favourite spots.

Scott Farrell – Matarangi Bluff Walk/Rings Beach Loop Track

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cott Farrell knows a thing or two about walking and wildlife. Over the past 40 years he’s covered huge tracts of the country working for the Department of Conservation, and more recently, with our Council for the last five years, where he’s responsible for our parks and reserves from Whitianga to the northern tip of the Coromandel. How many kilometres do you reckon you’ve covered on foot in your career Scott? “You couldn’t count it,” he is quick to respond. That fathomless distance is partly down to mountain climbing around the South Island and hunting and hiking on his days off – much of it around the Wairarapa where he and wife Debbie brought up their family. The rest would be time spent working for DOC where he was involved in projects like helping to establish Zealandia, the first fully-fenced ecosanctuary in Wellington. Here on the Coromandel, adding to kilometres on Scott’s boots is walking the Rings Beach Loop Track, between Kuaotunu and Matarangi, which is one of his favourite recreational trails. The Loop Track is a 4.7km back-country trail, which can be accessed at both ends of Rings Beach. “It’s a walk that’s got something for everyone,” explains Scott. “There’s

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Rings Beach

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Matarangi Bluff some hill climbs, one of which Scenic Reserve takes you up to the trig point with a great view overlooking Matarangi, there’s native bush 25 which is regenerating thanks to a tree planting programme which started back in 2010, there’s birdlife, there’s wetland and it can all be done in about two hours.” The track was the brainchild of the late Bruce Smith of Kuaotunu, built entirely by volunteer labour and is now managed under the umbrella of the Coromandel Peninsula Coastal Walkways Society. And if you wander along and start to feel a little tired, you can always take a breather on Bruce’s seat, built in his memory at one of the scenic vantage points he enjoyed and would want to share with everyone. l

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Sue Costello – Maramaratotara Walk – Ferry Landing, Whitianga

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ue Costello oversees the maintenance and development plans for walking tracks in Mercury Bay South. Her favourite walk in the area starts at the historic wharf at Ferry Landing in Whitianga, one of the oldest working stone wharves in New Zealand. As well as the rich history that stems from the 200-year-old wharf, the walk is also enjoyed for its sweeping 180 degree views across Whitianga to Motutere/Castle Rock, with a new look-out point built there this year providing a spot to stop and soak-in the vista. The Ferry Landing wharf was built by Sydney timber merchant Gordon Davies Brown and was central to supporting kauri logging activity back in the 1800s. The timber mill, shipbuilding yard and wharf saw the area become the first European IT’S DEFINITELY permanent settlement on the A WALK DOWN Coromandel. Work to the wharf was ‘MEMORY LANE’ restore completed in 2016. From the wharf, FOR ME …

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the track takes you in the direction of the river inlet (walking time approximately 10-15 minutes), down to Back Bay. The walk continues through the wetland and over a wooden walkway through Back Bay before returning to the native bush and through a stand of Karaka trees, where the path through the steep section is formed using tree roots for steps. As you come down through the bush, near the top of the tracks, a stairway leads to the new Maramaratotara lookout platform, where the view across the harbour and over to Motutere/Castle Rock is breath-taking. All up, the walk is about 3km and our Council’s Local Walks Guide estimates it will take 1 hour 30 minutes to complete both ways. Due to some of the steeper sections, it’s most suitable for people with good fitness levels. “I used to do this walk as a kid with my parents and I remember as we set out we used to see the local kids coming back with John Dory from Back Bay,” Sue says. “It’s definitely a walk down ‘memory lane’ for me and I love taking my own children on the walk now and to spend time at the lookout – spotting areas of interest in the landscape. The views are just amazing.” l

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ALONG THE WAY YOU’LL PASS MANY REMINDERS OF THE GOLDMINING HISTORY

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Ric Balfour – Karaka/Waiotahi circuit ee n

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view across the Firth of Thames Rd hi and then the track dives into ta io Wa the hills. Thames After about two hours Waiotahi Track meets the Karaka Track and one can either carry on for several more hours to Crosbies Hut and other tramping tracks down the main range of the Coromandel, or return to Thames via Karaka Track and the Red Rocks. These are about an hour or so after the junction, or if you’re coming from Thames, about two hours from the trail head. At the Red Rocks, the trail crosses a bluff and there are impressive views over the Karaka Valley all the way to Table Mountain. While the Waiotahi Track is generally well developed, the Karaka Track is rougher and has many boggy sections. There are also a few tricky stream crossings. Along the way you’ll pass many reminders of the gold-mining history of Thames, especially on Karaka Track, with many shafts dug into the hills to access seams of gold. Be careful with these, as they do sometimes experience rock falls. The whole walk took us about 4.5 hours. The DOC website describes the circuit as a tramping track taking six hours, and suitable for fit, experienced, and adequately-equipped people. Wear good tramping/ hiking boots and expect some rough sections. l Qu

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ou couldn’t ask for a better guide to the Coromandel Forest Park than Ric Balfour. Ric is our Council’s Parks Project Officer and has an impressive resume in backcountry management in New Zealand and the United States. He also seems to know what every bush, bird, tree and weed is in the Coromandel hinterland. Our Coromandel Magazine put Ric’s knowledge to the test recently on a walk into the hills and gullies outside Thames following the Karaka/ Waiotahi circuit, taking in the Red Rocks – also known as Red Bluff. The rocks are red because of lichen that grows on them and the effect, even on the cloudy day we saw them, is striking. We left one car at the parking area up Karaka Road in Thames and then took the other one to the small car park at the beginning of the Waiotahi Track, up Waiotahi Road. There is an initial steep climb through regenerating bush before the track levels off as it winds through the hills. At one point there is a great

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Lou Mackwell – Whenuakite to Sailors Grave Track Coromandel Forest Park

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Otara Group has work underway to ou Mackwell has lived in the Coromandel since the 1980s Bay protect and reverse the decline and is one of our field representatives covering the east coast: 25 of kiwi on land between Tairua Whangamata, Pauanui and Tairua. and Hot Water Beach. For this Lou has a lot of history working in horticulture, including Te Karo Bay reason, you can’t bring your a National Diploma in Horticulture. Those who work alongside Lou dogs on the walk. quickly see his passion and deep knowledge of New Zealand’s flora Thanks to the voluntary efforts of the local walkway group, you can and fauna, which makes his recommendation for the best walk in the now complete this walk on any tide. district a reputable one. This trail offers a shorter one-hour option, the Whenuakite Kauri Loop The main access to the Whenuakite to Sailors Grave track is Walk, which was recently upgraded so you can enjoy an easier amble approximately 7km north of Tairua at the car park off State Highway 25. that showcases some wonderful kauri trees. From here, it’s a 3-to-4-hour walk one-way to Te Karo Bay, Sailors Or take the Lynch Stream Track to the left, which takes you 2-2.5 Grave Historic Reserve (where you could leave a car if you don’t want hours to get down to the coast. There, you can follow the coastline to the to return on foot) with a few shorter tracks to choose from. picturesque sandy shore of Otara Bay. The final stretch of the walk takes At points along the walk, the ocean views are equally as breath-taking you to Te Karo Bay, commonly known as Sailors Grave, another hidden as the better-known Cathedral Cove coastal walk, with look-out points gem and popular surf break for locals. positioned to views of Slipper Island and the distant Aldermans. Ever wondered how Sailors Grave got its name? In May 1842, 22-year “I love how this track takes you through forest and then along the old William Simpson, a sailor on board the British Royal Navy ship coast, so it’s a real mix,” Lou says. “What I like most about this walk HMS Tortoise, was accidentally killed while loading kauri spars onto is the fact you are experiencing a good example of regenerating the ship in Te Karo Bay. According to the original kauri forest, so it gives you an kauri headboard on his grave “he drowned in the appreciation of what our forests surf ” and was buried here. This grave is thought to must have been like originally.” be the oldest sailor’s grave in New Zealand. The track winds its way through part of IT GIVES YOU AN “Due to this history the New Zealand Navy has a 4000ha Kiwi Recovery Programme, and APPRECIATION strong ties to this site. We had a great time at the is one of the biggest uninterrupted blocks OF WHAT OUR 175th anniversary event here last year,” Lou says. l of coastal native bush in the country. There are still magnificent mature kauri FORESTS MUST For more information: to be seen deeper in the bush, alongside • Help stop kauri dieback. Read more on page 135 HAVE BEEN LIKE rimu, flowering rewarewa, rata and www.kauridieback.co.nz beautiful nikau palms. Most of the track ORIGINALLY. www.doc.govt.nz is Department of Conservation (DOC) www.kiwisforkiwi.org land and the Whenuakite Kiwi Care

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A DV ERTO RIA L

Ahead of the game Beaut y therapist Pauline de Thierry well remember s the day she received the keys to her new business – a single-therapist salon in a small space, buried in the main street of Thames.

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ive years on, Pamper Me has transformed from a back-street beauty salon to a modern, street-facing and award-winning advanced skin therapy medi-spa in the heart of Thames. At the 2017 Hauraki Coromandel Business Awards, Pamper Me won the People’s Choice Award and the Retail Award. It was also the first clinic in New Zealand to win the ‘DMK Pure Award’ at the 2017 DMK New Zealand Awards – run by DMK Skincare. A medi-spa is a niche that Pauline (pictured right) describes as a combination between a beauty clinic and internal health and wellbeing provider. Services include traditional beauty treatments through to advanced skin revision and cosmetic and corrective skin and body treatments for men and women, including post-surgery rehabilitation. It’s the local Thames community that has helped drive Pamper Me’s development and diversification. The services cater to locals who were getting sick of travelling to larger cities just for a beauty service. In a role-reversal, Pamper Me now counts out-of-towners among its regular clients, as well as holiday-home owners who stop on their way to the bach and visitors seeking a treatment during their holidays. “It’s been an amazing experience to have built the business from what it was, to what it is today,” Pauline says.

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Employing locals and developing her staff has also been a focus of the business. In 2017, Pamper Me apprentice Machaela Robbins won National Apprentice of the Year in the industry training organisation HITO Industry Awards – a first for the beauty therapy industry – and the medi-spa is now a proud ambassador for HITO’s national campaign. “Learning is at the heart of the business and without it we would have plateaued years ago,” Pauline says. “I have a team of skilled beauty therapists who continually challenge themselves to excel, alongside our significant investment in training, personal and professional development and my drive to encourage a positive culture across the industry.” Pauline credits supportive family, friends and the Thames community for her success as a small business owner. “There have been days when it has been a juggling act to balance the demand of growing the business and the team, together with the very real needs of raising four children, and supporting my husband while completing his post graduate training to become a teacher, all while he was learning to lead, manage and ride the wave and to stay focused on the now while dreaming of our future,” Pauline says. “Our achievements have exceeded even my wildest dreams and we are more than simply beauty therapy the way it used to be. We are ahead of the game and we are in Thames.” Pamper Me Medispa, 537 Pollen St Thames www.pamper-me.co.nz l

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DrivingCreek Railway


When Luke’s Kitchen opened its door s in 2009, the rustic seaside café restaurant in Kuaotunu enjoyed a peak summer period of about six weeks.

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en years on, owner Luke Reilly considers the ‘peak’ season to run a good six months, extending from October through to March. Visitor growth in the ‘shoulder season’ around the prime summer months is a mark of success for the Coromandel’s tourism industry. And it’s something our regional tourism organisation Destination Coromandel has been working hard to achieve. General manager Hadley Dryden (pictured, left) has been with the marketing organisation for eight years. During this time visitor spending has increased by approximately $80 million thanks to the contribution of the tourism industry and Destination Coromandel’s focus on shoulder season growth. The value of visitor spending now exceeds $30 million a month in the Coromandel for October through to April (with January the highest month, recording $91 million). For the rest of the year, monthly visitor spend remains in the $20 million mark. “The minute we get to the $30 million mark on a shoulder season month, you hear anecdotally that businesses are seeing more visitors and things feel buoyant,” Hadley says. In 2018, Destination Coromandel put together its first brief for a winter campaign, seeking to elevate its ‘good for your soul’ brand tagline and promote home-grown food, arts, shopping and the wellness factor to appeal to people to visit over the colder months. Promotion of the Coromandel Coastal Walkway has been another tactical marketing initiative to encourage year-round regional spread of visitors, and spend. The Coastal Walkway campaign

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Luke Reilly, owner of Luke’s Kitchen in Kuaotunu, which serves wood-fired pizzas and locally-brewed craft beer with epic beach views.

encourages people to base themselves in Coromandel Town, where they’re more likely to stay at least one night, eat out, experience other attractions and use the local tour operators to access the walk. “We know from experience they tend to drive the loop [of the Peninsula] so there is more opportunity for the wider region off the back of a tactical campaign such as this one [for the Coromandel Coastal Walkway].”

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The Coromandel Coastal Walkway takes in the remote northern part of the Coromandel Peninsula.

The route takes in the ‘last frontier’ – the remote northern Coromandel coastline between Stony and Fletcher Bays. As the Destination Coromandel website describes: “It’s like walking through a 10km film set.” More information about the Coromandel Coastal Walkway can be found on the Destination Coromandel website: www.thecoromandel.com The Hauraki Rail Trail is another activity that’s been successful in encouraging year-round travel to the area, and regional spread of visitors to the southern part of the district, with the trail extending from Kaiaua to Thames, Waihi, Paeroa, Te Aroha and Matamata. The cycleway has approximately 81,000 visitors each year, and these numbers are expected to grow to more than 120,000 with the new $7 million extension to Matamata and Kaiaua due to be completed in early 2019. A MATTER OF SPEND

While the success of the tourism industry is often judged on growth in visitor spend, Hadley is quick to point out it’s not all about the money. “Benefits to the local community and preserving the environment we live in need to come first. Our advertising campaigns are all off-season and are typically based in areas that have the existing infrastructure to cope with growing numbers,” Hadley says. Added to the challenge of seasonality is

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yield. Regardless of the time of year, one of the industry’s biggest challenges is providing value to our visitors. The Coromandel remains a low-spend destination, compared to many other parts of the country. “We get more visitors than Rotorua, but we don’t get the same value of tourism spend overall,” Hadley says. “That’s a big challenge for the Coromandel, because people associate us with summer and beaches and those perceptions influence behaviour. There is a real opportunity to add value through quality visitor experiences, which should ultimately benefit the local economy.” In contrast, the perception of Queenstown is of luxury and adventure, wine and food. “Spend a weekend in Queenstown and you know your hand will be in your pocket, constantly,” Hadley says. The Coromandel recorded $436 million in visitor spend in the year to June 2017, a gain of $36 million (9%) on the previous year. (Source: Destination Coromandel 2016/2017 Annual Report)

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In terms of the industry’s contribution to our economy, tourism contributed $180 million (17.2%) to the Coromandel’s GDP in 2017. That compares to $459 million in Rotorua and $637 million in the Queenstown-Lakes district. KEY TOURISM MARKETS

The Coromandel’s fan base is 75% home-grown. Domestic travel represents 76% of total visitor spend for the Coromandel, with 60% of that coming from the ‘drive market’ (Auckland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty) alone. But while domestic visitors contribute the bulk of our visitor spend, it’s those from overseas who are providing much of the growth in spend in our region. Destination Coromandel explains in its annual report that this is off the back of a 10.2% increase in international arrivals to New Zealand, years of investment in travel trade marketing (by Destination Coromandel) and successive joint ventures with Tourism NZ into our most valued offshore market – Australia, which contributed $26 million into our local economy. China contributed a modest but healthy $2 million, despite Destination Coromandel not targeting this market outside of its baseline international activity. Destination Coromandel works closely with the travel trade industry, so international travel sellers are equipped to sell the Coromandel. In addition to Australians, visitors from the UK, Europe and North America make up the majority of our international market. Destination Coromandel also captures South America, China and South East Asia via New Zealand-based trade marketing activity.

GROWING OUR RANGE OF PRODUCTS

A significant challenge around maximising visitor contribution on the Coromandel is the relatively small number of tourism products on offer compared to other regions such as Northland, Rotorua, Queenstown and Wanaka. Destination Coromandel has been championing the need for quality product development, to improve seasonality and the overall quality of the offering. As the marketing organisation for the region, they can then encourage visitors to stay longer and spend more. “Visitor spend in the local economy should come back to benefit the locals,” Hadley says. The Hauraki Rail Trail is a great example of a popular tourism attraction that is well used by locals, for exercise and wellbeing, he says. “Tourism development can be a great way to improve the natural environment, the appeal of a place (to live and work), community assets and to contribute to the local economy” Hadley says. “We don’t always need more visitors, but we do need to add value to enable a positive impact from their time here.” At Luke’s Kitchen, Luke suggests there are plenty of opportunities for food establishments across the district. “I feel it really comes down to the way the business is run by using fresh ideas that add to the tourist’s experience, rather than relying on them. Food-based businesses are so heavily judged and reviewed via online sites, and these can really make or break a business amongst the tourists,” Luke says. “As the Coromandel grows, I feel the biggest

challenge is employment. While there are plenty of great long-term and seasonal workers out there willing to work on the Coromandel, often there is nowhere temporary for them to live, as rents are on a daily price tag.” Luke shares a word of caution as to how tourism is approached. “I think tourism is a great part of the Coromandel. Many people are blown away by what we have here. But after recently travelling to Queenstown and seeing how overcrowded it was, it made me realise the importance of how we approach our tourism and look after what we have got. Tourists are great for the economy and a lot of businesses rely on them, but I feel we should be mindful of the growth. We don’t want to sell out our home.” OPPORTUNITIES FROM THE NATIONAL TUIA ENCOUNTERS – 250 COMMEMORATIONS

Hadley suggests commemorations to be held in Mercury Bay in 2019, as part of the Tuia Encounters – 250 event, present strong opportunities for the Coromandel to leverage the national event and to communicate to the market about desired visitor behaviour. The event marks 250 years since the first meetings between Maori and Europeans during Captain James Cook and the Endeavour’s 1769 voyage to Aotearoa, New Zealand. “When Captain Cook visited the local iwi Ngati Hei in Mercury Bay, he received the first powhiri, or welcome, which we have replicated with visitors ever since,” Hadley says. “There will be opportunities off the back of Tuia to talk about the desired way you should visit the Coromandel.” Read more about what’s happening on the Coromandel with Tuia 250 on pages 112 and 113.

The Hauraki Rail Trail is a popular tourist attraction, and well-used by locals.

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The Coromandel is renowned as a top holiday spot for Kiwis, blessed with a range of natural hideaways, which make it the ideal place to escape. Here is a selection of new experiences to be had on the Coromandel, or new ways to experience the Coromandel.

GO FURTHER on two wheels Bush e Bikes is an electric bike hire and cycle tour business based in Coromandel Town. Owners Gavin and Leanne Jeffcoat provide a range of quality electric bikes to explore the many great sights in the area – from town, to beach, to bush – with much less effort than a standard bike. However, if you prefer a bit more exertion, the team have standard bikes too, with ten quality Avanti Competitor mountain bikes now in the fleet.

BUTTERFLY FOREST The Coromandel’s butterfly wonder world is opening its wings on a new chapter in 2018, moving to a new, larger site. Butterfly Forest is due to open the doors at its new home at Aeroview Garden Centre, 382 Ngati Maru Highway, near the entry of Thames, in 2019.

Old gold trails, quiet roads and forestry tracks proliferate the area and are ideal for bike riding. Bikes can be hired on an hourly rate or for multi-day tours, which typically start from Bush e Base at 105 Wharf Road, Coromandel Town. A range of tours can see you explore this unique colonial town, the tranquil inner harbour, Castle Rock or perhaps to Colville and beyond.

Butterfly Forest is a popular attraction for school groups, retirement centres, clubs and tourists.

For those with more time, the three-day ‘Coastal Contrasts’ supported tour takes you around the complete northern Coromandel Peninsula. Covering 130kms of quiet, remote roads and tracks including the Coromandel Coastal Walkway, this tour has an incredible range of diverse scenery and experiences. You travel light and safe in the knowledge that support is nearby and your personal belongings are delivered to your accommodation. This tour is priced to suit a range of budgets and you can hire a bike or bring your own.

butterflyforestnz@gmail.com

www.bushebikes.co.nz

The home to hundreds of butterfly species was previously located near the Dixon Holiday Park, where it was known as the Butterfly & Orchid Garden. Owner and co-founder Daniel Adam says the larger site will house a greater range of butterfly species, with new species being imported regularly, more plants and a self-sustaining ‘eco house’ – the first of its kind in this country. A 40m butterfly tunnel house will be surrounded by a parrot aviary and tropical plants and species such as frogs, blue tongue lizard and gecko.

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Pure sailing fun Boom Sailing offers the opportunity to live your America’s Cup Dream in Whitianga. Founder Mat Collicott and the team at Boom will be in full swing taking charters from Spring 2018 on the original prototype catamaran that Team New Zealand honed their skills on, providing the chance to experience the thrill of America’s Cup foiling.

“As far as conditions go, Whitianga would rate as having some of New Zealand’s best sailing charter conditions”

Boom Sailing provides a range of sailing charter and boat trip options for individuals, couples, families or team events. These include an action-packed or chilled out exploration of Mercury Bay by sail taking in Coromandel icons Cathedral Cove, Hahei Marine Reserve, Cooks Beach and beyond.

EXCESS is an SL33 high performance racing yacht and was critical for Team New Zealand in the testing and design of the big 72 foot America’s Cup foiling cats in San Francisco.

Boom also offer 2-hour sunset trips where you can sail the boat or relax on the deck on a beanbag at the end of the day. The trip includes a local brewery beer and some local smoked seafood snacks.

This trip offers a fast-paced exhilarating sailing ride, experiencing foil-assisted upwind hull flying and bearing away for some downwind short foiling runs.

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“As far as conditions go, Whitianga would rate as having some of New Zealand’s best sailing charter conditions,” Mat says. www.boomsailing.co.nz

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Zipline adventures at Driving Creek Railway HAURAKI RAIL TRAIL The Hauraki Rail Trail currently has approximately 81,000 visitors per annum, and this is expected to grow beyond 120,000 with the new $7 million extensions to Matamata and Kaiaua due to be completed in early 2019. As a grade one cycle trail, the Hauraki Rail Trail is suitable for all fitness levels and cycling skills. The 160km track is made up of five scenic one-day rides to comfortable three-to-four-day rides. The trail boasts some of the best scenery New Zealand has to offer from the Shorebird Coast through lush green Waikato farm lands to areas rich in pioneering history. Highlights include: the stunning Karangahake Gorge, historic gold mining towns, intriguing shore birds, RAMSAR wetlands of international significance and luxurious mineral spas. The trail has been a great collaboration between our Council, Hauraki District Council and the Matamata-Piako District Council. Visitors are encouraged to visit the official website to get updates on the trail status before they ride and to find out what other things are happening alongside the trail such as local farmers markets and music, car and food festivals. There are great experiences along the Hauraki Rail Trail such as kayaking at Te Aroha, an alpaca farm at Hikutaia and great foodie experiences along the way with Matatoki Cheese Factory and funky café The Refinery at Paeroa. haurakirailtrail.co.nz

A zipline that strides through regenerating native bush, three kilometres north of Coromandel Town, is the region’s newest tourism offering this summer. Driving Creek Railway was due to open the zipline on their 60ha property by late 2018/early 2019. Eight lines were being strung during winter, the longest 184 metres, designed to guide visitors through the bush canopy alongside kereru, korimako (bellbirds) and tui. Driving Creek’s general manager John Gurney says Driving Creek’s founder, New Zealand potter Barry Brickell, enjoyed his previous zipline experiences at Rotorua, hence the inspiration to bring one to Driving Creek. “We used a spud gun with Agria potatoes, fishing line and number eight wire to string the zipline and guide wires over trees and gullies in the valley,” he said. The method seems fitting for a venture built organically at the hands of Barry, who passed away in 2016. When John took over as general manager at Driving Creek he spent time with Barry before he died, to understand his vision for the property. “He wanted the zipline to show people the true beauty of real New Zealand native bush,” John says. Founded by Barry in 1961, Driving Creek’s clay-laden hills were ideal for potting and the ferry at Coromandel provided access to his Auckland market. The venture expanded to include the railway used to extract his clays, resident potters, a museum housing a large personal collection of artwork, including pieces by Colin McCahon and Ralph Hotere, and a conservation project which extended to the adjoining property – scrubby and pineinfested at the time. Brickell planted nine thousand kauri and 23,000 native plants. The bulk of the property is now in QEII National Trust covenant. “Barry said to me, ‘John, leave the core exotic pines on the property, don’t cut them down’, so there’s this ring of exotic pines in the centre. Barry wanted people to see and feel the difference between New Zealand native bush and exotic forests.” Once briefed and harnessed, zipline visitors will be taken on a 14-seat rail car to Crown Flat, halfway towards Driving Creek’s pinnacle, the Eyefull Tower. The guided zipline tour down the valley will take about 2.5 hours. “There will be some walking, tree to tree or pole to pole. It’s designed for them to take in and appreciate the surroundings,” John says. They will also pass the old slipway that used to bring kauri logs down the valley and an area where the region’s first gold was found in 1852. The zipline is the first step in realising Barry’s vision for the property. Also included in the 10-year plan is a guided, sculpture park walk, within a 2-hectare predator-proofed area on the property, resurrecting pottery workshops and kilns for up to seven potters in residence and offering curated exhibitions from Barry’s collection. “Barry had a vision for this property and we’re staying true to that, this is the first step,” John says. www.dcrail.nz

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A DVERTORIAL

Connection, authenticity at heart of business Coromandel Adventures was born out of a simple philosophy: connectivit y. “It’s about connecting people to our places, our stories, and each other while providing a seamless travel experience,” Sarni Hart explains. “It’s our place, your way.” Sarni and husband Willie Lochore launched Coromandel Adventures seven years ago, and their passion for both the town and the Coromandel has seen it grow by more than 30 per cent a year. It’s now the Coromandel’s leading tour and transport operator, with a team of nine: Sarni, Willie and seven personable local guides who share their zeal. The idea for the business was planted while Sarni was working at Coromandel’s iSITE office. “I realised quickly that there was a huge gap in connectivity; trying to help visitors without a car make the most of their trip to the Coromandel was challenging. Visitors Perfect finish for the Coastal Walkway tour. would arrive on the ferry from Auckland, wanting to experience the promise of the Coromandel that afternoon, but there was no one offering a flexible service. There was no regional perspective.”

After six months of ground work, they launched Coromandel Adventures in October 2011, and their connection with the 360 Discovery Cruises ferry service was critical from day one. The result is a customised tour and transport service that connects Auckland, the Coromandel Peninsula and now other places on tourists’ must-see lists like Waitomo, Hobbiton and Rotorua. “We provide seamless itineraries around the Coromandel, to and from Auckland, and Central North Island, without doubling back all the time,” Sarni says. “It’s amazing how many people plan to base themselves in Auckland and do day trips – driving that motorway twice every day is not an ideal visitor experience.” They aim to put a two-day Coromandel Peninsula section in every fourday tour, using Coromandel Town as the hub while taking in the “coast to forest” biggies like the Coromandel Coastal Walkway between Fletcher and Stony Bays, New Chums Beach, Driving Creek Railway, Cathedral Cove, Hot Water Beach, 309 Kauri Grove, and Hauraki Rail Trail. Willie explains that expanding their tours outside the peninsula is essential to continue growing the business, without sacrificing authenticity and connectivity. And they’re doing something right. They have won tourism awards and their TripAdvisor reviews are overwhelmingly positive. “The comments are so great, they’re almost embarrassing,” laughs Willie. Coromandel Adventures, 90 Tiki Rd, Coromandel www.coromandeladventures.co.nz Blog: coromandeladventures.blogspot.co.nz

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Destination Coromandel Your Regional Tourism Organisation The Tourism Industry on The Coromandel delivers $444 million to the region. (For Year Ending 2017. Source: Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment).

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The showhome that never was

Michelle Mayo is accustomed to people stopping outside her Whitianga home to gawk . She takes it as a compliment that they are as captivated by it as she is, with its striking cedar and bl ack board-and-batten exterior .

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f they were invited in, they would be equally as captivated. The home – designed as a modern take on a traditional Kiwi bach – was built to capture the sun, which drenches both the north-facing living area and master bedroom from morning till night, thanks to vast expanses of double-glazing. The airiness is accentuated throughout by a soft, Scandi palette of grey and white and in the living and master bedroom by raked tongueand-groove ceilings. All doors and ceilings in the rest of the house are also over-height. Black accents punctuate, in joinery, door and cupboard handles, taps, the double-sink and light shades. “My favourite part of the house is the living area,” Michelle says. “People are just blown away when they come in here; it’s so light and airy.” At one end of the open-plan space is the keen cook’s kitchen with its island bench, stainless steel appliances and scullery. At the other is the lounge, furnished with an inviting oversized suite, modern rocking chair, soft rug and thoughtfully chosen accessories that make a house a home: throws, cushions, lamps, candles, flowers, books. Separating the two areas is a stunning bleached oak dining table and six chairs, beneath a cluster of stylish naked bulbs. Underfoot, the concrete floor has a dual purpose – it’s easy care in Right, top: Slatted awnings over the lounge and master bedroom add architectural interest. Right, bottom: A sleek modern look is achieved in the bathroom, ensuite and powder room with a mix of subway and oversized square tiles, black accessories and white fittings.

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Opposite page: Sliding doors open wide to connect the living area with the sunny outdoor patio. Pretty mandevillia vines will cover the pergola in time. Until then, a sail provides summer shade. Right: The kitchen features benchtops in engineered stone and stainless steel, subway-tiled splashback, a scullery housing crockery and the tea-making station. The island’s easy-care tiled front matches the feature wall above the fireplace. The open-plan living is light and airy, thanks in part to the grey and white palette (Dulux Manorburn and Okarito) used throughout the house.

a house that welcomes with open arms both grandchildren and dogs, and it also acts as a thermal mass, soaking up the winter sun, and releasing it into the room as night falls. To help keep this warmth inside, the double glazing sports extra-thick glass, and insulation that’s well above building code requirements is nestled in the extra-wide walls and ceilings. in the autumn of 2017. Embracing her But she can’t take full credit for these fresh start, she also left behind most of her valuable thermal features. The house was “People are just blown away seventies-townhouse-inspired furniture, originally designed as a showhome, and which would have looked out of place here. her subsequent ownership was a happy when they come in here; Only precious things made the cut, such as accident; a combination of job loss and the oak plant stand in the lounge; the pretty family ties. heart-shaped mirror in her bedroom. “I was Michelle has always intended to move to pretty ruthless,” she admits with a smile. “I Whitianga, where her builder son Andre wanted to keep it minimal.” and his family live, however it happened Outdoors, the look is also minimal and easy sooner than expected after she was made care, with swathes of lawn, native hedging, potted plants and a raised redundant from her Auckland job in 2016. “It was a really good job, vegetable garden, the contents of which are cooked up in the kitchen. but I realised redundancy was a gift; I was almost retirement age Eighteen months on, Michelle is enjoying retirement and is busier anyway,” she says. than ever, happily pitching in to help Andre and wife Cedah on the Payout in hand, Michelle bought a section in Whitianga Waterways, homefront as they juggle business and family. She also returns to but there was a hitch: Andre was too busy to build her dream home Auckland regularly to visit her daughter and granddaughter, and travels because he was working on the flagship showhome for his company overseas every year. Cassa Homes. “I just love it here,” she says contentedly. “I’m absolutely so pleased I Like the redundancy, that turned out to be a blessing, too; Michelle made the move.” l fell in love with the showhome that never was, bought it, and moved

IT’S SO LIGHT AND AIRY.”

Michelle Mayo’s Whitianga home is a showstopper.

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beach living with a bit of polish One of the newest homes on the Pauanui Beach front is a fusion of kiwi beach living and contemporary Polynesian st yling.

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orty years of holidaying in Pauanui has come together in the design of this beach-side escape for a family of six. With a 255m2 layout, the house plan was inspired by a collection of tents surrounding a fire. Three wings open-out on to a central courtyard, the communal heart of the home, with an outdoor fire and a traditional Rotuman ‘lovo’ outdoor oven, surrounded by lush tropical landscaping and a boardwalk. Inside, open plan living and full-height glazing maximise full-frontal ocean views, with effortless flow between the outdoor living areas on the east and west sides of the house. While the house perfectly suits the family’s beach lifestyle now, flexible design plans ahead for the future when the four young teenagers grow up. With five bedrooms, four living areas and three bathrooms, the house has plenty of room for entertaining and is scalable for extra family and friends. Despite the open spaces, there are plenty of cosy places to be separate if desired. There’s a self-contained guest wing and in the

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kids’ rooms, fold-down beds tuck into the wall cavity, providing beds for 15 people. The mezzanine master bedroom takes in wide views of the beach and a skylight looks through to the stars overhead at night. The shower in the ensuite faces out through a full length glass window to the beach, but is made private at the flick of a switch, at which the glass becomes opaque. The home’s contemporary Polynesian feel reflects the cultural roots of the owners and the feel they wanted to create. Inside, a small palette of hard wearing and durable, natural materials have been used – giving warmth and texture to the rooms. The chunky, engineered big slab timber structure and band-sawn, dark-stained pine contrasts with easy-care waxed concrete floors,

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while unobtrusive furnishings add pops of colour, yet don’t detract from the view. High stud vaulted ceilings with exposed rafters provide a unique ambience, especially at night when the uplights enhance the mood. Stairs leading to the master bedroom feature coconut wood treads, and the modern island feel is continued with coconut wood furnishings in all the bedrooms. Other surprises include the in-ground wine cellar with an opening glass ceiling and the hi-tech ceiling fans to cool on those humid summer nights. This is beach living with a bit of polish. l

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The open plan living and full-height glazing

MAXIMISE FULL-FRONTAL OCEAN VIEWS ‌

Architect: Richard Goldie, Peddle Thorp Architects, Auckl and

This home has an in-ground wine cellar, pictured.

Engineer s: Mott MacDonald, Auckl and Builder s:

Hol ah Homes, Hamilton

Photography: Simon Devitt

This Pauanui beachfront home impressed judges at the Waikato Registered Master Builders 2018 House of the Year Competition. Builders Holah Homes took out seven awards for the project, including Waikato Supreme House of the Year, the Craftmanship Award, the Outdoor Living Award, the Heart of the Home Kitchen Award and a category win for a new home over $2 million.

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Photo credit: jamie@jamiecobel.com

The

Lookout

This holiday home may be perched on a cliff, but with the waves crashing on the rocks below and the salt spray drifting upwards… there’s a strong sense of being at one with the ocean, which is just how the owner s like it.

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he Lookout on Tairua’s Mount Paku is recognised by Bachcare as one of its most upmarket holiday homes on offer in the Coromandel. The elevated location and full-height glazing offers a stunning 180-degree view of the ocean, beach, and the Tairua township. While the view means there is always something happening, privacy is a main attraction of this contemporary two-bedroom house. From the beach below, it reads as a simple dark box on the hillside. You can unwind indoors and watch the world from the lounge or set yourself up on the deck for private alfresco dining while enjoying the stunning scenery. Both bedrooms also open onto the deck. While the house is perfectly suited for couples, the king bed in the second bedroom splits into two single beds to cater for smaller families. Owners of ‘The Lookout’ Mike Tee and Susan Gilmour live in Auckland but have been spending their holidays in Tairua for more than

50 years. Mike, an automotive engineer, was introduced to Tairua by his uncle who settled in the town in the late 1940’s on the main street. Mike says he lives for the great outdoors, diving, fishing and surfing and his beach house is designed to show his keen attitude towards the sea. Architect Darren Jessop designed the house as a three-part project. What’s there now, on the lower level of the site, will become a holiday studio when the owners eventually live in a new house above. When it’s finished, the house will resemble a series of stepped boxes, with the two main buildings separated by a swimming pool. The pool structure has already been built, and has a temporary roof so it can be used for storage in the meantime. The house is something of a dream realised for Mike, who used to look up at Paku when he was a child and always think about how nice it would be to one day own a house up there. “We rent it out because we want other people to enjoy it as much as we do,” Mike says. The Tairua property has been managed by Bachcare for almost three years and has received rave reviews. Here’s an example from the Bachcare Website:

“Amazing location and house. We had a great time and loved looking down over the beach. Perfect for a small family.” Photos credit: jamie@jamiecobel.com

The property is very popular with bookings throughout the summer months from November through to March. To find out more and check availability for The Lookout, head to www.bachcare.co.nz/property/3829 l

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‘F loat homes’ proposed FOR THE WHITIANGA WATERWAYS

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A neighbourhood of floating homes could soon be found in Whitianga.

aterside Sustainable Developments is moving ahead with what could be New Zealand’s first floating community within a new marine district at the Whitianga Waterways. What’s proposed is 12 architecturallydesigned homes, each with a private 18m berth attached, providing residents with quick and easy access to their boats. Waterside Sustainable Developments director Kerry Martin has been involved in pioneering floating structures in Europe and Vancouver, where ‘ float homes’ have been a fixture in communities for decades. Floating homes are an emerging market for New Zealand, but Kerry believes the water-loving community of Whitianga has the potential to take up this type of on-thewater living. “Can you imagine how beautiful it will be to come along the harbour and see a row of floating homes and yachts,” Kerry says. “For avid boaties, the concept of living waterside in this way is lively and beautiful. It’s magical to wake up to fantastic views every day.” Whitianga Waterways, by Hopper Developments, has been supportive of

Artist impression of the floating home development in the Whitianga Waterways. O U R

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the concept and its project manager Peter Abrahamson says the proposed community will be an exciting project within the Whitianga Waterways future marine precinct. ‘The Whitianga Waterways Marine precinct aims to incorporate two new products currently unavailable anywhere else in New Zealand, being the stylish and innovative floating homes and live-aboard berths for larger vessels with an adjoining garage and accommodation unit,” Peter says. The precinct will also incorporate a range of marine services, including boat maintenance and haul-out facilities, re-fuelling, barge sliding maintenance and marine retail. When Our Coromandel went to print, the team was making an application for a show home to be consented, and was planning to start construction in October. The show home had been pre-sold, with a further two buyers willing to place deposits for homes in the precinct. Kerry says the first serious buyers coming to the table are from Whitianga, and he expects existing Coromandel residents more broadly to be the biggest market for the new homes. All going to plan, the floating home project is scheduled for construction within the next two years. It will then be a case of all eyes on Whitianga

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Aerial – artist impression.

as new, innovative ways of living are explored in other parts of the country. Kerry says Christchurch is looking at plans to repopulate parts of the red zone with areas of inventive housing such as float homes. It’s intended that the design for Whitianga’s floating homes will achieve superhome star ratings. “This is due to their fantastic installation and use of the concrete that forms the base to heat and cool the building,” Kerry says. Floating homes have the potential to be energy self-sufficient, and have a much lower energy consumption, as the water provides a natural heater and cooler, Kerry says. Kerry is also working on bringing other innovative amenities to Whitianga, such as an inflatable splash track obstacle course for kids to use over summer. www.watersidedevelopments.nz l

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The Jessen’s 1958 Liteweight Kiwi caravan ‘Daisy Mae’.

y a d i l o h a o t Stepping inwith Daisy Mae For Whitianga-based author s Don and Marilyn Jessen, being able to combine their passion for all things vintage and retro, as well as travelling, has been a dream come true thanks to some very special t wo-wheeled friends.

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he Jessens, who have a longstanding connection with the Coromandel region, are avid caravaners – with a keen interest in restoring them. Their current pride and joy is a 1958 Liteweight Kiwi caravan ‘Daisy Mae’, named after Marilyn’s aunty. Daisy Mae caravan features in their latest book ‘Vintage and Retro Caravans Downunder’, with a beautiful illustration by local artist Monique Bush. The Jessens had been looking for a 14foot caravan to do up and found Daisy Mae on Cheltenham Beach on Auckland’s North Shore. After dragging her out by a digger, Daisy Mae was brought to the Coromandel to be restored. The van is now fitted-out in retro-style. They’ve left no stone unturned making sure it features all the comforts of home. ‘Daisy Mae’ comes complete with a shower and toilet, solar panels in the roof for off-road travels, battery-powered fridges and hidden charging systems. The Jessens say their vision for the van is for everything to be useable, so while everything has a beautiful vintage feel, it’s very much a practical caravan.

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Don and Marilyn Jessen.

Time and care has been taken to find the last special pieces to finish the restoration, which has included commissioning local Tairua sculptor Kate Gervase to make a pottery standup hand basin for ‘Daisy Mae’ from scratch. “Our vans never get 100 per cent finished as we keep finding new things to add,” Don says. What Marilyn particularly loves about restoring caravans is the freedom to explore designs and decoration you wouldn’t try in your permanent living space. “As a woman I can be over the top with décor and this allows me to experiment with things that I couldn’t live with in my own house, as it would be too overwhelming to handle,” Marilyn says.

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“I feel like I am stepping into a holiday with ‘Daisy Mae’. Even when the things were packed away and I opened the cupboard at home and saw them all; it just puts a smile on my face. It’s so different and quirky and quaint.” Marilyn, a former specialist teacher in photography, television and film says restorations provide a great outlet for creativity. “All of sudden I have found myself doing handcrafts and mimicking the 50’s styles,” she says. Born into a caravanning dynasty, Don’s early holiday memories are fond ones, centred on caravan trips in the early 1950s to Long Bay, just out of Coromandel Town. His father, Tek, was the founder of Liteweight Caravans in the 1940s, so “vanning” has always been in his blood. Don himself became a director of Liteweight Caravans at the age of 24. For their first caravan weekend away, more than 40 years ago, Don took Marilyn to Long Bay. Her family came too and by the end of the weekend her mother had decided to buy a place in Whangapoua – and the home remains in her family today. “There’s something pretty cool when your future partner says, see that ponga over there – I carved that,” Marilyn says.

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The pull of the Coromandel area saw them finally buy property in Whitianga nearly 10 years ago. Initially, the idea was to buy somewhere where they could put a caravan on the section. “We fell in love with the house and suddenly everything made sense,” Marilyn says. “We have a beautiful home with beach views to the hills over Buffalo Beach and are really happy to be able to retire here,” Don says. Life in retirement is anything but slow for the Jessens, with their time spent on the restoration of their vans and travel to research their books – their latest profiling beautiful vintage cars and caravans from around New Zealand and Australia, including several from the Coromandel area. Marilyn says the only way to holiday for them now is by caravan. “For us, it truly is the only way to holiday. I don’t feel it so much with motels or hotels – I associate them more with business. Caravans just make me feel like I am going to step out and smell the bush or sea,” Marilyn says. “It’s amazing what can be stacked and packed into caravans if they are designed well. They can take a lot of stuff and are very comfortable. It’s so much easier to travel in a caravan versus a motel or a hotel, where you have to pack inand-out,” she says. For anyone wondering if “vanning” is for them, the Jessen’s advice is to “just do it”. “Hire a caravan and try it out first if you are worried. Particularly if you are making the jump from tents to caravan,” Don says. “It’s a great way to holiday as a family – you can chuck the kids in the awning and away you go. It’s a more social way to travel. Kids entertain themselves and you just have a magic time.” The Jessens also recommend checking out the Whangamata Beach Hop. A long-time fan of the event, Don says it’s a great way to meet new people. “When the Beach Hop started its vintage caravan shows, there were around a dozen vintage vans. Now, that number has exploded to over 100 at last count and rapidly growing.” They both believe you are spoilt for choice if you want to caravan in the Coromandel area. “Both sides of the coast offer gorgeous spots to park up and enjoy the atmosphere and

“… IT JUST PUTS A SMILE ON MY FACE. It’s so different and quirky and quaint.”

surroundings,” Don says. “These days we like to do a day trip from Whitianga to Kennedy’s Bay, then on to Port Charles and across to Cape Colville and back – it’s a long day, but worth it for the scenery.” For more information about Don and Marilyn you can visit: http://donandmarilynjessen.co.nz For stockists of their books visit: www.mercurybay-artescape.com/mosaic www.paperplus.co.nz l Below: Inside Daisy Mae – fitted out in retro-style.

The Jessen’s range of coffee table books reflect their love for all things vintage and retro.

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On the Beach Whangamata was named as BookaBach’s Supreme Bach of the Year. PHOTO: JOHN MCCOMBE

d e m a n d a p t n Beachfro h c a b p o t It’s been a big year for one of New Zeal and’s favourite destinations, Whangamata.

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t has received accolades and awards from all corners: Best beach, best event (Beach Hop) and best fishing club (Whangamata Ocean Sports Club). And now one of its beachfront baches has been named Supreme Bach of the Year by private accommodation rental website BookaBach. The national competition had eight categories, with the winner of each category going up for the supreme award. After winning the category for the best setting, ‘On the Beach Whangamata’ won the top title, receiving more than 13,000 votes from the public and the approval of two Kiwi design experts. The beach-side unit ticked a number of boxes for the judges: Indooroutdoor flow, use of space, view, value for money and consistently solid guest feedback combined. With unobstructed views of the beach, location is definitely its drawcard. As one guest review states: “It is almost on the beach, rather than by it.” The unit is beautifully balanced with everything you could need for a great holiday and a view that touches every sense. With two bedrooms plus pull-out beds in the garage you can sleep a maximum of six guests. There are two bathrooms and a hot outdoor shower for when you step off the beach. The loungers on the deck are a great place to enjoy a glass of wine and relax and soak in the view.

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Here’s now BookaBach describes this property: “Warning – this bach may cause a serious holiday addiction! Forget “beachfront”, this Coromandel beauty makes it feel like you are literally right on the beach. Just two steps off the deck will have you on the soft white sand of Whangamata beach. Keep the French doors to the deck open to take in the world class view. The loungers are a great place to enjoy a glass of wine and relax, or if you fancy dinner by candlelight on the deck, with the sea lapping the front lawn, the fabulous hosts can organise a ‘romance package’ for a romantic treat with your partner.” Owners of the property Liz and Bert Laing are retired dairy farmers from Waitakaruru and have been coming to Whangamata since 1966. They had their first bach in 1980, eventually buying this spot of paradise in 2007 and redecorating it six years ago. Bert and Liz now live in Whangamata permanently, and the bach is rented year-round. While Bert still loves his duck shooting and fishing, Liz has been busy for the last 14 years with her home interior store ‘Bella’ located on Whangamata’s Port Rd. Bella has been a favourite spot for gift buyers for many years and her eye for interior design is reflected throughout the bach. ‘On the Beach’ has always been busy with bookings and is now even more so since the award, with repeat customers coming back year-afterAd2 year. Residential Bins.pdf 1 19/07/18 1:27 PM Many ofWheelie the guests have become good friends.

But despite their ‘bach star status’, they certainly haven’t inflated the prices. “It’s not about the money,” Bert says. “We love where we live, and we love to share that.” BookaBach general manager Peter Miles says this property received the highest number of votes from the public to the BookaBach site, making it a very well deserving winner of the Supreme Award. If you’d like to know more or make a booking, go to www.bookabach.co.nz Listing number 8091 l

NO MORE BAGS - GET A WHEELIE BIN

From as little as

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Michael Barlow and Murray Bain

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Terms & Conditions apply


PROPERTY MANAGEMENT AND HOMES FOR RENT

“I have pre-approved tenants waiting to move in. More rental properties needed now.”

3 Evaluate property 3 Market property 3 Tenant screening

3 Rent collection 3 Inspections 3 Property maintenance

“Our expertise in property management will ensure your investment property is well looked after. You can just sit back and relax. We also offer a selection of quality rental homes for tenants.” We welcome your enquiry.

Property Manager – Whitianga Chloe Cater 021 048 6113 chloe.cater@bayleys.co.nz

Property Manager – Thames l Sales Robyn Turner 027 550 0120 robyn.turner@bayleys.co.nz

7 The Esplanade, Whitianga 3510 07 866 0098 bayleys.co.nz

459 Pollen Street, Thames 500 07 869 0632 bayleys.co.nz

MH REALTY LTD, BAYLEYS, LICENSED UNDER THE REA ACT 2008


BUILDING / PLANNING

When is a structure a vehicle or a building? Holidays are all about friends and family, so when you own a holiday home – the more guests you can fit in, the merrier. Bach owners are often looking at different ways to house the overflow over the peak summer season. While the main options used to be caravans and mobile homes, there is now a wider assortment of structures promoted on the market to help maximise capacity on your property. Our Council often receives complaints about various structures on properties, which

Is it a building?

If a structure isn’t a vehicle, the test for whether it is a building falls within the general definition of a building set out in section 8(1)(a) of the Act. Under this definition, ‘building’ means “a temporary or permanent moveable or immovable structure...” The examples in the box above were all considered to be moveable structures, and not vehicles. This means they were buildings under the Building Act, and needed to comply with the requirements of the Act and Building Code.

When is a

If a structure is a vehicle also vehicle, it can still be a building? considered a building under the Building Act if it is “immovable” and “occupied by people on a permanent or longterm basis.” Caravans or mobile homes are vehicles used as accommodation. However, they are

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we need to investigate. Home owners often think if they have a ‘vehicle’ on a property, or a moveable structure with wheels, this does not require a building consent. But that’s not necessarily the case. To make sure you don’t end up in a situation with an un-consented structure on your property, check out the following guidelines. Section 8 of the Building Is it a Act considers the meaning of a building. vehicle? Section 8(1)(b) (iii) states a building includes “a vehicle or motor vehicle (including a vehicle or motor vehicle as defined in section 2(1) of the Land Transport Act 1998) that is immovable and is occupied by people on a permanent or longterm basis.” Just because a structure has some vehicle-like features, such as wheels, it doesn’t necessarily make it a vehicle under the Building Act. The distinction between a building that is movable, and a vehicle, is that a vehicle is used for transporting people or goods, or must be powered by some form of combustion or be self-propelled. If in doubt, check with Council.

clearly designed to move on roads and are generally moved from site to site. A vehicle such as a caravan or mobile home would only be considered a building if it were both immovable and occupied permanently or on a long-term basis.

When is a Building Consent required?

4 When a vehicle does not meet the meaning of a vehicle as defined in Section 8 of the Building Act 2004 and is a building. 4 W hen a vehicle is immovable and occupied on a permanent or long-term basis; 4 W hen an owner wishes to connect their vehicle to the Council infrastructure (water, sewer, stormwater). Note: Any structure connected into our infrastructure requires foundations which comply with the Building Code. 4 Any building that contains sanitary fixtures (this includes your utility setup, or selfcontained habitable buildings).

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Recent determinations from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment have considered whether the following structures were vehicles or buildings: • a shepherd’s hut with wheels and tow bar • a shed registered as a trailer under the Land Transport Act • a structure with wheels • a structure previously fitted with wheels. The determinations found the structures had some features of vehicles, such as wheels, and could be moved on-site, but had very few other characteristics in common with vehicles (eg suspension, chassis, brakes, lights). The structures weren’t used for transporting people or goods, and weren’t road vehicles powered by internal combustion engines or self-propelled. Generally, there was no evidence of the structures being used as vehicles.

Also consider • B efore considering your next project, please check with Council as to our District Plan requirements as the Resource Management Act may differ from Building Act requirements. • F or any building that is built in another district and is intended to be relocated into the Thames-Coromandel district, you will need to check that the building construction is suitable for the wind zone and corrosion zone for its intended location, and you need to ensure it has a Building Consent and a Code Compliance Certificate from the council where it is being built. This helps us allow only quality structures into our district. A second building consent is required by Council for its foundations, siting and its drainage. So in summary, two building consents are required – one from where it is built and the second from where it is being located.

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FAQs

Some questions we get asked a lot What height does my handrail need to be on my deck?

What about making changes to garages, sleep-outs and sheds?

To comply with ‘F4 Safety from falling’ of the New Zealand Building Code, a balustrade needs to be 900mm high for stairs or ramps, 1m high on all decks above 1m in height on residential properties, and 1.1m high for commercial properties and all other locations.

Some of these do not need a building consent and others are exempt. However, all must meet the Building Code and the requirements of our District Plan (e.g. site coverage, height to boundary, distance to boundary).

Can I put a container on my section for storage?

Do I need consent for my marquee?

It’s very likely resource consent is needed. A building consent is not required if the container is temporary, used for storage and meets spread-of-fire regulations. If the container was to change its use from temporary storage to another use e.g. workshop, retail store or habitable situation a building consent is required. A shipping container that is permanently founded or connected to services also needs a building consent.

• A ny tent or marquee up to 100 square meters (10 x 10 meters) in floor area, provided it does not remain for more than one month, does not need a Building Consent.

What are the rules for garden sheds?

Trade waste is any liquid that is discharged from trade premises to a Council’s wastewater system in the course of any trade or industrial process. Discharging trade waste to the wastewater system places an additional load on the system. To protect the wastewater system and the environment, Council needs the help of businesses to provide trade waste that can be safely accepted and treated. Trade waste that is discharged directly into council wastewater systems without pre-treatment, can cause blockages or overflows and can introduce hazardous substances that can be a health risk to the public and could discharge into a nearby stormwater drain, or river system. If you have a potential discharge please contact our infrastructure team to be advised on trade waste requirements.

You can erect a shed of up to 10m2 in floor area, with maximum height of 3.5m above floor level. The shed must also be its own height away from any residential building or any legal boundary. All roof water must be disposed of on-site and in a manner that it does not have any effects on neighbouring properties.

• A Building Consent is required for a tent or marquee greater than 100 square meters if it is to remain up for longer than one month.

What is trade waste?

Fences and retaining walls What height can I build my fence? You can build a fence up to 2.5m in height from the supporting ground level without a Building Consent. If you want to build a fence over 2.5m, you will have to get Building Consent and Resource Consent. Please contact our Council’s planning team for more information.

Does my neighbour have to pay half? This is a civil matter and we recommend that you seek legal advice from your local Citizens Advice Bureau or the NZ Law Society.

Do I have to find the boundary pegs before building a fence? Yes, it is the only way to be sure that the fence is built on the boundary.

If I build a fence on my side of the boundary do I need to get my neighbour’s permission? No, not if the fence is less than 2.5 meters in height from the supporting ground level. If they object this is a civil matter, so consult your Citizens Advice Bureau.

My boundary is next to a Council park. Does the Council pay for half the fence? Yes, your Council may contribute to a shared boundary fence on such places as Council parks, reserves or car parks.

What height can I build my retaining wall? You can build a retaining wall without a Building Consent so long as it is no higher than 1.5m (and does not support any surcharge or any additional load to the load of the ground). But it must still comply with the Building Code.

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online

Building consents now available We have moved our building consent applications to a new online system. Now you can apply anywhere, anytime and it’s much easier and quicker than our old paper-based system. Applying online will allow you to attach plans and specifications electronically, then you can track progress of the application and if further information is required, you will be contacted via email. Approved consent documents will be distributed by email. This new system also allows a Code Compliance Certificate to be issued by email once a final inspection has been completed and approved – provided all the documentation including any additional fees have been received.

What are the benefits?

• Easier to use – No more printing out forms, manually filling them out and then posting them back to us. Simply log in to your secure customer portal in our new system to apply, provide information, and track your progress all in one place. • Less paper – Upload plans and other documents directly into the online system. They’ll all be in one place for your reference, and that means fewer stacks of paper in your office. • Faster – Other councils that have adopted similar systems have seen benefits for the customer, such as cost savings from transferring documents electronically, rather than delivering or posting. See www.tcdc.govt.nz/buildingconsents for more information.

Top result for our council building team

Our Council’s building team has received top marks for the way we carry out business in our latest building accreditation audit. In 2018 we had the country’s premier accreditation body IANZ on site assessing our process for issuing building consents and making sure we meet the standards required as a registered Building Consent Authority (BCA). IANZ had high praise for our team, who achieved the best result for a BCA since the new Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) rules were introduced in July 2017. The auditors found TCDC had no serious non-compliances with the new standards. Just one general non-compliance was identified, but swiftly resolved on site. The national average for general noncompliances for a council audit, under the new MBIE rules, is 15. “You have strong procedures that are generally well defined. Inspection records are well maintained,” the auditors said. “The recommendation is that accreditation will continue.” Our Council’s regulatory services group manager Barry Smedts says this is an exceptional result. “This is easily the best result in the country since the new regime has been in place,” Mr Smedts says. “Maintaining building accreditation is one of our key activities and this result demonstrates that what we are doing is at the highest level. “Council building control teams often get a lot of flak, but to get such a clean record on compliance is a credit to the work everyone in the team who have lifted our game once again.” The next assessment is in 2020. l

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EVENTS

Our Council is serious about creating vibrant, strong communities and stimulating economic development. Establishing the Coromandel as a nationally significant events destination is an ambitious yet achievable objective, given our track record in hosting events such as the K2 cycle race, the world-famous BeachHop event, and the Whitianga Scallop Festival. Our economic development strategy recognises the need to pull more visitors to the Coromandel and to attract our large holiday-home owner population here more often. Quality events are one way to do this. We host hundreds of events each year and there is usually something on most weekends – this includes motorsport, cycling, multisport and adventure race events and summer concerts. In 2019 there will be a number of new events in our district with the Tuia 250 commemorations in Mercury Bay (see page 112-113), while exciting recent events The Gathering and the Whitianga Half Marathon have confirmed their return in 2019.

Council support for events There are two main sources of event sponsorship funding from our Council: • Major events sponsorship: We have created a contestable major events fund. • L ocal community event sponsorship: Grants made available by each Community Board to support local events, either through a dedicated event fund or via the community grant programme. Event funding has strict criteria. You can find out more on our website: www.tcdc.govt.nz/events We can provide marketing support for key events and we have staff dedicated to help people book our reserves for special occasions. See more information at www.tcdc.govt.nz/events Our Council has a dedicated district events coordinator, Kirstin Richmond (pictured). Previously, Kirstin worked for Spotless Services, based at Mt Smart Stadium and Eden Park in Auckland, where she was responsible for game day and event operations within the finance team, working alongside concert promoters, Rugby World Cup organisers and the Vodafone Warriors. “We live in such a fantastic place with great beaches, beautiful landscapes and yet so close to the busy population centres of Auckland and Hamilton – the perfect combination to attract major events to our district,” Kirstin says. Get in touch with Kirstin if you are interested in bringing your event to the Coromandel: kirstin.richmond@tcdc.govt.nz Sign up to our weekly events newsletter to keep up with what’s happening in the Coromandel: www.tcdc.govt.nz/subscribe

Whitianga Half Marathon

TASTE OF MATARANGI

FAT FREDDYS DROP

Organiser Kelly Simmonds was hoping to attract 500 entrants for the inaugural Whitianga Half Marathon in May 2018, but was overwhelmed with entries for 960 runners and walkers.

Held on the Village Green at Matarangi Beach, ‘A Taste of Matarangi’ is a fabulous familyfriendly day of food, wine and music by the beach.

HEADLINE INAUGURAL CONCERT FOR THAMES RACECOURSE The Fat Freddy’s Drop concert in January 2019 heralds a new era at the Thames Racecourse.

“It was an awesome turnout for a first event. We were stoked the weather was good, and amazed by all the support from the local businesses and Whitianga community,” Kelly says. “It’s great to have something that brings people to the town at a quiet time of the year.”

Each year, the event strives to give back to charitable causes that benefit the community. Since its inception in 2013, the festival has raised $72,000 to it’s benefactors through fundraising initiatives and donations.

The seven-piece band will perform on January 7, as part of a summer tour around New Zealand.

The 21km run and walk course offered a fast and flat scenic loop of Whitianga on pathways and sealed roads. There was also a 10km run and walk, a 5km course and a 2km kid’s beach dash to create a fun event for all the family.

For the 2019 event, the organisers will once again be supporting the Kuaotunu Land Search & Rescue (KSAR) and its work to save lives on the Coromandel.

The event will return to the Buffalo Beach Reserve on May 25, 2019. whitiangahalfmarathon.co.nz

Our events team has been working with the Thames Jockey Club for several months on a resource application to hold major events at the racecourse on Parawai Rd, following approaches by several promoters about using this facility for large concerts. Tickets are available at eventfinda.co.nz

atasteofmatarangi.co.nz

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iconic

country pub The Coroglen Tavern has long been synonymous with the Coromandel summer . Meet the couple behind the local institution where thousands flock to see-in the New Year .

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uying the Coroglen Tavern five years ago was largely a homecoming for Jed and Michelle Harper. The couple were living in Wanaka after several years travelling overseas and were eager to return to the Coromandel, where they grew up, to raise their children Slade and Meg. “We both felt we’d had a rad upbringing here in Whitianga and wanted our kids to have that too and to see them grow up fishing and kayaking in their back yard just as we used to,” Michelle says. Michelle’s parents owned the tavern for a year-and-a-half, having bought it off receivers in 2011, and were putting it up for sale to focus on their other restaurant Frankies Sports Bar and Grill in Whitianga. For Michelle, a graphic designer, and Jed, a green keeper, their first year in hospitality had its share of challenges. But two years later they had bought the land and the building too, and were bringing their own charm to what has been a local institution since the country pub first opened its doors in the mid-1940s to serve the kauri gum diggers living in the area. Each summer, thousands flock to the Coroglen Tavern to hear Kiwi bands on the summer tour circuit and its stage area out the

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Michelle and Jed Harper and family Slade and Meg, with the America’s Cup at the Coroglen Tavern.

The Coroglen Tavern’s famous lamb burger .

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back can heave with up to 1800 people seeing in the New Year. This year the tavern hosted its first off-peak concert on Queen’s Birthday weekend, headlined by Salmonella Dub, attracting more than 1600 people – a huge turnout for a winter event. The numbers demonstrate the growing number of visitors to our area beyond the peak summer season. “When we first started out here we definitely had a pumping summer and a winter slump. But over the last three years the summers have kept getting longer and longer. There doesn’t seem to be a time of year without lots of campervans on the road,” Jed says, The tavern is on a national tourist app and the steady flow of tourists during the week means no two days are the same. Many local bach owners can’t drive past without stopping for a drink on the veranda, looking out over farmland and passers-by on State Highway 25. Bike groups from Tauranga and Auckland regularly stop-in for a bite to eat, as do more Coromandel locals out exploring the area on the weekends, where the fire roars in winter and it’s a popular spot for a Sunday lunch.

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Jed and Michelle have worked at creating more of a family environment where people can bring their kids with them for a meal. While the pair initially ran themselves ragged, trying to offer too much, they have learned to stick to the formula of what they do best. “We were trying to offer too much, we introduced brunch and tried to change the menu frequently. But then people would complain when we took things off the menu,” Michelle says. Now, guests can be assured they will find the favourites: The scallop burger, fresh fish, house recipe mussel fritters and chicken wings with the tavern’s secret sauce. “We’ve got all the things people love on the menu. We’re a country pub. We do fresh, simple food that’s cooked well.

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“We’re all about making it a place where everyone can come and feel awesome,” Michelle says. And they do. The tavern is home to the Whitianga Pig Hunting Club and the Coroglen Tavern Darts Club who meet on Thursday night. Week-night regulars also include local farmers, teachers, and orchardists; sawmill workers, retirees and the local rugby team. Jed drives the courtesy van if anyone needs a lift home. However, tougher liquor laws have led to a change in the drinking culture, he says. “People are getting more moderate with their drinking. It’s less about booze and beer and more about a social setting,” Jed says. Summer concerts will remain a fixture at the Tavern. The line-up for summer 2018/2019

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was not confirmed when Our Coromandel went to print, but Michelle says they have been working hard behind the scenes and are confident this will be another huge summer for the tavern. Jed and Michelle live on site and say returning to live on the Coromandel was hands-down the right decision. And they’re not alone in coming home, with many other school mates returning to live in the area. Employment isn’t a barrier to living on the Coromandel, Jed says. “There are plenty of jobs in town. If you want to work, there is a job.” When Jed and Michelle are not working they are out spending time with their two children and enjoy fishing, golf, kayaking and bike riding. coroglentavern.co.nz l

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411 Ocean Road, Whangamata 607 Port Road, Whangamata 101 Bambury Place, Onemana

0800 658 499

Why Choose Whangamata Real Estate? • For more than 60 years Whangamata Real Estate has been buying and selling Whangamata, we are very proud of the fact that we are the oldest real estate company on the Coromandel Peninsula. • With over 145 years of combined experience in selling real estate our committed and qualified sales team focus on achieving the best possible outcome in

the best possible time. Our market share of sales in Whangamata has remained consistently higher than other companies. • Belonging to a nationwide group of independent companies offers our clients a full nationwide referral network with direct links to 160 offices and 2500+ salespeople making us one of the largest real estate groups in the country.

www.whangamatarealestate.co.nz


“…And for anyone thinking the site is just for big kids,

THEY CAN THINK AGAIN…”

Caption to go here.

Stamper battery heard again in Thames The newly refurbished Stamper Battery at the Thames Goldmine Experience site is an increasingly popul ar attraction for goldmining enthusiasts and those with a fascination for old machines and history.

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he 19th century processing plant machinery was restored by volunteers and supporters over a 50-year-period and opened to the public in August 2017 as part of the 150th anniversary celebrations of the goldfields being proclaimed. Originally opened in 1899, this still-operational electricity and steam-powered gold-processing plant is the only fully operational plant of its kind in New Zealand. The restored site attracts tourists and locals alike, eager to experience New Zealand’s rich goldmining history. Paul Bensemann, author of the book Lost Gold and a member of the Hauraki Prospectors Association (HPA), played a key role in the project and is hugely proud of what everyone has achieved. Paul, who comes from a family of gold mining fossickers, has high hopes for the future of the site and says the commitment of those involved to make this happen has been unwavering. “The volunteers are crucial to the success of the operation, offering their labour and time free.” Stamper Battery offers tours daily in spring, summer and autumn and every weekend in winter. Our Council has helped support the project, with a financial contribution to materials. Being one of the main tourist attractions in the Thames and Coromandel region isn’t something anyone involved takes lightly. “For many people, we are the first place they have visited since arriving in Auckland. This is a great privilege, but with that comes a great responsibility. We don’t want to turn this into Disneyland – this needs to remain authentic,” Paul says. He is excited by the growing range of nationalities that visit the battery. Traditional visitors from England, Germany and France are now being joined by those from Eastern European countries including Russia, the Czech Republic, Lithuania and Hungary. “We find a lot of our United Kingdom visitors come especially to the battery so we meet many interesting people that have a true fascination for old machines and history.” For years the site has also offered the opportunity for high school and university students with an interest in the area to guide with them over the summer months.

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Former volunteers have gone on to become environmental scientists, geologists, history teachers and archaeologists, with an explosives expert who works in quarries among the group. Paul relocated to Thames in 2002 to work for the Green Party. He was excited to explore the famous gold mining region and to soak up the wealth of knowledge the locals had in an area he was already so passionate about. “I went and talked to the Goldmine Experience people when I was new to the area. I went on many field trips, then began volunteering with the HPA organisation as a guide as well as promoting the area to tourists,” he says. “I got information about hard rock mining by talking to the older and more experienced members – I still have a lot to learn about history.” Alluvial gold mining, or river gold mining, is still the most popular form of gold prospecting in New Zealand and it’s Paul’s area of expertise. He is happy to show people his samples, many of which were discovered by his family. Now Stamper Battery is operational and the site’s steam engine is up and running, the HPA team are focused on tidying up some of the site’s displays. And for anyone thinking the site is just for big kids, they can think again. Children make up a large chunk of the visitors, with school children from as far as Hamilton and Auckland coming to experience a guided tour. “There is a gold panning area which is popular – especially with toddlers who like to swish their hands around in the water. A class of 30-40 children will be split into groups and have three guides who will take them each panning, underground and then to watch the machines running.” In between working on a new book about the history of the conservation movement, Paul still has much to do with the group as possible, attending working bees when he can, as well as being a part of the Heritage Trust to help promote tourism in the area. For more information about the site and for tour information, please visit: goldmine-experience.co.nz l

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H E R I TA G E F E AT U R E

Tribute to a Coromandel suffragette ut back in her day, early last century, Meri was one out-of-the-box when it came to standing up for women’s rights, and we can look back now and thank her for paving the way for women in leadership roles. One of Meri’s main claims to fame was being the first woman to speak to the Kotahitanga

(Maori) Parliament, requesting the right for women to vote and to be members of the parliament. She was concerned that under colonial law, Māori women landowners were losing their rights to inherit and manage their lands. She believed the appeals of the chiefs to Queen Victoria to protect Māori lands had not helped Māori women. Meri Te Tai felt

ILLUSTRATOR: KATE HURSTHOUSE (WWW.KATEHURSTHOUSE.COM / @KATEHURSTHOUSE)

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If Meri Te Tai Mangakahia (1868-1920) was living today, she’d be prominent on an ever-growing list of strong female political leader s to admire.

the Queen would be more likely to listen to requests from women. In 1897, Māori women won the right to vote in the Kotahitanga parliamentary elections. You may have seen Meri’s image commemorated around the country. In Christchurch she’s one of four faces in the Kate Sheppard Memorial statute that was unveiled in 1993, as well as being immortalised in the tiles on the Khartoum steps in Auckland City. Here on the Coromandel, where Meri and her husband Hamiora Mangakahia raised their four children in Whangapoua, a plaque has been placed at the Meri Te Tai Mangakahia reserve, near the Whangapoua Beach Store and the local reserve. This year, celebrating the 125th anniversary of women’s suffrage in New Zealand, Meri is being featured alongside the likes of Nancy Wake, Dame Valerie Adams, Dame Ngaio Marsh and Jean Batten in the publication ‘Our Wahine’, an illustrated history of New Zealand’s extraordinary women. Created by New Zealand artist Kate Hursthouse, Our Wahine pays homage to 125 women from New Zealand’s history. The text has been researched and written by Kate’s mother Karen Brook, with the mother/ daughter passion project creating a visually exciting and accessible overview of the role of New Zealand women throughout history. “There are so many New Zealand women role models, but their stories have often been hidden in the history books or, at times, forgotten,” Kate says. “Picking just 125 from hundreds of inspiring women in New Zealand’s history has been a hard task, but we have endeavoured to represent and tell these women’s stories to the best of our ability. We have a huge amount of respect for every woman we depict in this project.” Meri Te Tai’s story has been one of the most popular in the series so far and we’re proud to have such a famous person from New Zealand history with ties to the Coromandel. www.ourwahine.nz l

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H E R I TA G E F E AT U R E

Exploring the Bella Street Pumphouse M

Merv Grafton’s life of intrepid journeys and his continuous desire to discover things means visitor s to the Bell a Street Pumphouse Museum in Thames get a little something extra.

erv’s explorations of the Thames and Coromandel region have turned up all sorts of interesting relics and mining paraphernalia, which now call the Pumphouse home. “I’m a finder, not a collector and I like that the Pumphouse offers a place to preserve these treasures for others to enjoy,” Merv says. Merv has gone back to many places most of us don’t go to and the footage and images that document his adventures have been compiled onto a DVD and displayed in the photo room at the Pumphouse. These can also be viewed at the Treasury. “There are a wonderful selection of underground pics and items now on display that are quite rare to see, let alone find,” he says. Merv has personally explored all mines that it is possible to get into around the museum, and is particularly fascinated with seeing what nature has done to the areas after the miners have left. As one of the many tireless volunteers that donate their time and efforts to the museum, Merv and the team offer full guided tours of the remains of the building and the outside pump site. It has been nearly 100 years since the pumphouse engines last operated, but its history lives on through the museum. Originally built in 1870, The Queen of Beauty mine operated until 1885. When the mining stopped, it was then rebuilt as the present Pumphouse which became the powerhouse for Thames – pumping water into the Firth of Thames non-stop, night and day for 20 years. The famed ‘Queen of Beauty’ shaft started operating in 1986 and was famed for its amazing mechanical capabilities in its day. The shaft was so powerful it could lift water from a recordbreaking depth of 1000 feet, and pump 2000 gallons-a-minute to the surface. Merv says visitors from all over the world still marvel at the technological expertise New Zealand had at the site, from the boilers to generate steam to the mechanics of the pumps. “We’ve had engineers from the USA come and look in awe at the little old country of New Zealand and the amazing expertise and machinery the Pumphouse has – keeping in mind this was all done with no electricity – just steam power.” The Pumphouse was the first building in Thames to have electricity and the generator and pelton wheel are still located beneath the pumphouse. Everything about the Pumphouse is huge and impressive – particularly the recreated five-metre diameter flywheels which Merv and the museum’s president Malcolm Sowman restored over an 18-month period, finishing in 2006. The original wheels inside were made of mild steel and taken away for scrap metal in 1918. Merv and Malcolm jointly resurrected these on-site using timber. “The wheels are a huge drawcard for visitors to the museum. At 17-foot each in diameter – they are monstrous in size. The drive wheel

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weighs in at 40 tonnes and the fly wheel at 30 tonnes,” Merv says. Kids visiting the museum particularly love to manually turn the handles, getting a big thrill, and many people can’t quite believe how they were restored by the two men. Merv happily directs them to the footage to see for themselves the painstaking process and care taken to get these back to pristine working condition. The next venture for the museum is the long-awaited ‘poppet head’ project. The group has been given the go-ahead so they can begin fundraising to build a replica poppet head, which is the framework above a mining shaft that supports the winding mechanism. The annual Steampunk the Thames event, held in November, has tripled in size over the last three years and the Pumphouse is the popular site for the conclusion of festivities. The Bella St Pumphouse is located on the corner of Waiokaraka Rd and Bella St, Thames in the north-eastern corner of Thames, known as Grahamstown. For more information visit: www.bellastreetpumphouse.com l

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Thames Hospital celebrates

150th anniversary In its 15 decades of existence Thames Hospital has cared for the digger s of the goldfields and successive generations of the wider Coromandel and Thames Valley communit y. This November it celebrates its 150th anniver sary.

Above: Thames Goldfield Hospital in 1868. It’s the building in the centre right of the photo within the square fenced-off area. Below: Thames Hospital in 2018. An integral part of the Coromandel Peninsula community, in what is now the centre of Thames.

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he diggers’ hospital in Thames was officially opened on 2 November 1868, and called “Thames Goldfield Hospital”. Gold mining had been in full swing for just over a year and the town of Thames itself didn’t even exist – it wasn’t to be formed until 1873 when the settlements of Shortland and Grahamstown merged. The hospital is one of the oldest operating

was a dirty, noisy, dangerous business, local historian Kae Lewis writes in True Tales of Thames Hospital in her chapter on the establishment of the hospital. The miners faced cave-ins, rocks falling from mines further up the hills, falls down shafts, and industrial-type accidents while tending the steam-powered stamper batteries that crushed the gold-containing ore. There were also the illnesses present in any frontier settlement of the 1860s: typhoid fever, dysentery, It was founded 150 years ago not because the government of the day thought there should be tuberculosis, diphtheria, whooping cough and measles. a hospital here – but because members of the Severe cases were sent to hospital community saw the need and got the job done. ” in Auckland by boat, and many ~ Mayor Sandra didn’t survive the passage. A committee was set up and began in New Zealand and has been an enduring the task of fundraising. Ngati Maru donated a part of the Coromandel and Hauraki Plains one-acre block of land – where the hospital is community through natural disasters, today located. war, epidemics, economic downturns and The hospital was opened at noon on 2 boom times November, and was built, furnished and The hospital is a major employer in the equipped at a cost of £230, all of it raised by district and dominates the skyline of Thames. the community, with no contribution from The history of the hospital has been the central or provincial governments. chronicled in True Tales of Thames Hospital, In 2007-08 the hospital underwent a 150 Years 1868 – 2018, written by a dedicated major redevelopment with the demolition of group of people with a connection to the buildings dating from 1900. hospital, both past and present. By 2010 a new Emergency Department, A launch for the book was to be held Inpatient Unit, Clinical Centre and Radiology during the 2 – 4 November 2018 weekend Department had opened. A few years later celebrations of the anniversary. a new CT scanner and echocardiography service were added. In 2011 the new Thames DIGGERS NEED A PLACE TO HEAL Birthing Unit was opened. Digging in the goldmines of “the Thames” “We’re always looking at the needs of the

community and how best to respond to those,” Jacquie Mitchell, Service Manager for Thames and Coromandel Rural Health Services, says. “Our population is elderly, we have one of the highest over-65 populations in New Zealand. Our services also keep in mind other priority groups such as maori and children,” she says. “Thames Hospital services are in good shape. The future is bright.” l

Thames Hospital in numbers Total staff – 351, including the birthing unit Babies born – about 120/year Emergency Department patients – 18,000/year Outpatients – 19,000/year Top five inpatient admissions: • Elderly unable to cope at home • Congestive pulmonary disease • Infections causing sepsis • Cancer for palliative care

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• Cardiac chest pain

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A N AT I O N A L C O M M E M O R AT I O N

In 2019, New Zealand will mark 250 years since the first meetings between Māori and Europeans during Captain James Cook and the Endeavour’s 1769 voyage to Aotearoa New Zealand. A national commemoration, Tuia – Encounters 250, will acknowledge this pivotal moment in our nation’s history as well as the exceptional feats of Pacific voyagers who reached and settled in Aotearoa many years earlier. The commemoration uses a Māori name (Tuia) and European concept of time and commemoration (Encounters 250). Tuia means to ‘weave or bind together’ and is drawn from a whakatauki (proverb) and karakia (ritual chant), which refers to the intangible bonus established between people when they work together. Mercury Bay will play a significant role as it was one of the four locations around New Zealand where Captain James Cook made landfall, and marks one of the first encounters between Europeans and Māori 250 years ago. Themes for the national commemoration are focused around dual heritage, shared futures, the meeting of two great voyaging traditions (Pacific and European) and 1000 years of Pacific voyaging and celestial navigation. It’s also about creating legacy and presenting a balanced and honest history to better understand each other and to build a strong foundation for a shared future.

Tuia karakia Kia whakarongo ake au

I listen

Ki te tangi a te manu nei

To the cry of the bird

A te Mātūī

The Mātūī

“Tūī, tūī, tuituia”

Calling “tūī, tūī, tuituia”

Tuia i runga

That it be woven above

Tuia i raro

As it is below

Tuia i waho

Woven without

Tuia i roto

As it is within

Tuia i te here tāngata

Interwoven with the threads of humanity

Ka rongo te pō

Felt in innocence

Ka rongo te ao

And in consciousness

Tuia i te muka tāngata

Intertwined with the threads of humankind

I takea mai i Hawaiki-Nui

Born from Great-Hawaiki

I Hawaiki-Roa, i HawaikiPāmamao

From Far-Hawaiki, from Long-Distant-Hawaiki

Oti rā me ērā atu anō Hawaiki And hence all other Hawaiki Te hono a wairua

The merging of spirits

Whakaputa ki Te Whaiao

Out in to the world of light

Ki Te Ao Mārama

Life, knowledge, and illumination

Tihe mauri ora!

Sneeze oh living spirit, dynamic life-force, life-principle!

A pōwhiri will be held at Wharekaho, where the voyaging fleet ‘Te Pōwhiri’ will visit during Tuia Encounters 250 commemorations within Mercury Bay.

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Artist impression of the replica HMS Endeavour at Cathedral Cove.

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he arrangements for Tuia are gaining momentum with the hope everyone takes part in the national commemorations. Within the Mercury Bay area, the Mercury 250 Anniversary Trust has been formed to oversee the local commemoration activities. The trust is co-chaired by Paul Kelly (also Chairman of the Mercury Bay Community Board) and Joe Davis (Ngati Hei) with support from an events coordinator and cultural advisor. The highlight of the local commemorations will be a five-day visit from a voyaging fleet ‘Te Pōwhiri’ from 16 October 2019 to 20 October 2019. This will include waka and vessels from the Royal New Zealand Navy. There is a possibility that the fleet will also include the replica of HM Bark Endeavour, Cook’s ship. The Endeavour replica is currently based at the Australian National Maritime Museum in Sydney. The five-day voyaging fleet visit is to be known as “Te Pōwhiri.” The fleet will land at the northern end of Wharekaho (Simpsons Beach) where they will be met by Ngati Hei and proceed to the southern end of the beach to the historic Ngati Hei pa site where the pōwhiri will take place.

media expected to attend. This community is invited to share this historic event for Mercury Bay. Several other local commemoration events are being planned. Creative Mercury Bay is organising an expo of local music and poetry to take place in the Whitianga Town Hall on Saturday 19 October 2019 from 11:00am to 11:00pm. Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, an indigenous composer, has been commissioned to compose a piece of choral music to be performed. Another special feature will be a group of musicians, led by well-known Māori artist James Webster, playing taonga puoro – traditional Māori instruments. A fireside storytelling evening is being planned for on Buffalo Beach and the Mercury Bay Art Escape is working on several murals to be created throughout Whitianga. There is opportunity for more local events to mark Tuia Encounters 250 and anyone with ideas for the commemorations should get in touch with the Mercury Bay 250 Anniversary Trust. You can contact the Trust mercurybay250@gmail.com More information: mch.govt.nz/tuia-encounters-250

Mercury Bay Area School students will be involved in the pōwhiri, with about 2,500 people, including dignitaries and national

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A DVERTORIAL

Heart Foundation home

up-for-grabs

Jennian Homes Coromandel has this year been busy building another dream home for the Heart Foundation Lottery, this time in Pauanui.

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his fully-furnished Jennian Home, valued at $850,000 is the first prize in Heart Foundation Lottery No 115 to be drawn on Friday January 25, 2019, (subject to DIA approval). The three-bedroom home sits on a 604m2 section at 594 Waterways Parade in Pauanui. With 182m2 of living space it has a double, internal-access garage, two bathrooms and open-plan kitchen, dining and living. The house is furnished by Whangamata furniture store Bella, in a coastal theme. Jennian Homes Coromandel sales manager Haley Trebilco says all previous lottery homes built in the Coromandel have been popular, and the team expects the same for this beautiful new home. “People love the Coromandel and dream of having a holiday home to enjoy over the summer,” Haley says. Lottery No. 115 closes on January 18, 2019. See below for viewing details.

FIRST PRIZE HEART FOUNDATION LOTTERY NO. 115

Jennian dream home Beach 594 Waterways Parade, Pauanui

on • Open Home: Sunday’s 10am – 12no each 0 • Tickets: $15.0 e during open home times • Tickets can be bought at the hous n. datio Foun t Hear the from and directly dation.org.nz/lottery • For information visit www.heartfoun or call 0800 750 150 or 09 951 5980

HEART FOUNDATION PARTNERSHIP Jennian Homes is the proud partner of the Heart Foundation Lottery and this home will be the 59th first-prize dream home to date. Proceeds from Heart Foundation Lottery tickets help provide support in communities for the 186,000 Kiwis living with heart 114

disease, and contribute to life-saving heart research and training for heart specialists. Heart Foundation direct fundraising manager Gail McIntyre says the lottery programme is one of the charity’s most significant revenue-generating activities. “As a charity, the Heart Foundation relies on the generosity of everyday New Zealanders to continue much of its life-saving work. Often our lottery supporters have experienced a heart problem themselves, or may know the devastating effects of losing a loved one to heart disease, so they want to contribute to the prevention, treatment and support work the Heart Foundation offers,” Gail says. The Heart Foundation runs six lotteries per year, each with a first prize of a fully-furnished Jennian home and other prizes including overseas holidays, a new car from Toyota and $10,000 cash. Jennian Homes Coromandel builds two of the six lottery homes each year. RARE SUCCESS FOR JENNIAN HOMES COROMANDEL The Jennian Homes Coromandel team is based in Whangamata, led by husband-and-wife owner-operators Stephen and Haley Trebilco. This year the franchise won Jennian Homes’ Supreme Franchise award – a rare feat as it’s just the third time the award has been presented in Jennian’s 35-year history. To be eligible, a franchise needs to have been a top-three finalist for Franchisee of the Year for five out of the past eight years. Haley says that like all Jennian Homes franchisees, the team works hard to build a reputation for excellence in customer service, design and craftsmanship in every home they build. Any accolades are secondary: “Owning a quality home is an incredibly important goal for most families, and our greatest reward is making that dream come true. This award is a wonderful tribute to our team of professionals who take enormous satisfaction out of making homeowners happy.” For more information about Jennian Homes Coromandel, please contact the team at 626 Port Road, Whangamata or phone (07) 865 6767. l

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Proudly building our community. Community wellness and the health of all New Zealanders is very important to us. We're proud to support the Heart Foundation.

Jennian Homes Coromandel 626 Port Road, Whangamata P 07 865 6767 E coromandel@jennian.co.nz jennian.co.nz


ADVANCING THE

t c e j o r P e l l i v Col

A fundraising campaign to buy l and for a significant wellbeing and education facilit y in Colville has made good ground during 2018.

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he Colville Project’ aims to provide the remote northern Coromandel region with a wide range of medical, social, education and training facilities, and to create a health and wellbeing industry which will support opportunities for employment. The region has about 700 permanent residents, but numbers swell by more than 10,000 in the summer, putting pressure on medical and other services. Colville’s doctors and nurses currently work from a rented house that doesn’t have running water in the rooms, and small

medical procedures are carried out in a purpose-built tin shed extension. The same clinic also provides after-hours care along with accommodation for some staff of the ambulance support service. The Colville Project team has a vision for a multi-purpose centre that will house the GP clinic, St John Ambulance hub and other essential social and community development services, alongside education and skills training facilities to upskill local residents including youth, and train post-graduate medical students in rural practice. It’s intended the centre will evolve to

provide housing options and supported living for the elderly needing community care, including a commercial kitchen for meals on wheels, alongside accommodation for visiting medical professionals and students. A community partnership The Colville Project was formed in 2016 and is a partnership between the Colville Community Health Trust and the Colville Social Service Collective. It’s estimated $3 million is needed to complete the first stages – buy the land, design, build and fit-out the wellbeing and education centre.

The site proposed for The Colville Project.

What is the Colville Project? The Colville Project has a vision for a wellbeing village that will provide the following facilities for the northern Coromandel: • A wellbeing and education centre, providing a range of medical, social service, education and other services. • A ccommodation for visiting medical professionals and students. • H ousing options for the elderly and families wanting to live and work in the area. • Y outh recreational facilities and skills training.

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Colville Community Health Centre is located at a rented house on Colville Rd.

“We hope our project will SHINE AS A BEACON TO OTHER SMALL, RURAL COMMUNITIES …”

A 32-hectare site above the flood plain on Wharf Rd, Colville has been identified as ideal for all stages of the project and a fundraising campaign launched in 2018 has been focused on raising $670,000 to buy the land. As at the end of July 2018, fundraising for the land purchase had reached about 28 per cent of its goal. With the successful progress of a further campaign that encourages 100 of the people who arrived to live in the region during the 1970s-1980s (The 100 Hippies Campaign), fundraising is expected to reach 40 per cent of the target. The project team say securing the land is critical to the launch of the project, which is strongly backed by the northern Coromandel Peninsula communities and supported by an independent feasibility study. Colville Project spokesperson Bronwyn Blair says the project is all about a small community of people pulling together to make something great happen. “Our communities have raised around $170,000 towards the land purchase and a further $170,000 targeted specifically to the building of stage one, which is amazing,” Bronwyn says. “However, we know Colville’s small rural community can’t raise this sort of money alone, so we are reaching out to the wider Coromandel community to help. “We hope our project will shine as a beacon to other small, rural communities seeking to regenerate and build a sustainable future where people can thrive.” The team has until early November to raise the remaining $500,000. For more information on the Colville Project and how to donate, visit: www.thecolvilleproject.nz l

Respected GP shares passion for integrated medicine

to train doctors who want to be rural GPs, of which there is currently a shortage across the country as the majority reach retirement age themselves. CCHC hosts fourth and sixth-year medical students for two weeks’ work experience in rural practice, but there is potential to offer more training, she says.

Dr Kate Armstrong (left) and The Colville Project spokesperson Bronwyn Blair speak for The Colville Project at the Colville Easter Festival.

Dr Kate Armstrong is Colville’s local GP and a key figure involved in the Colville Project as a trustee, representing the Colville Community Health Trust. At the Colville Community Health Centre (CCHC), she sees first-hand the pressure on the medical services, and says the proposed centre is greatly needed as Colville’s retirement-aged population grows. Since the 2006 Census the area has seen a 61% increase in people aged 60-69 and a 32% increase in those aged 70-84. “More people are retiring at their baches and moving to the area, putting pressure on social and health services,” Dr Kate says. “Eventually, the baby-boomer bulge will mean we reach a point where we can’t care for our own people.” It’s a problem facing many parts of rural New Zealand: How can you care for the community as they age? “With the Colville Project we want to develop the infrastructure and the carers to hold on to our aging population,” Dr Kate says. An honourary lecturer at the University of Auckland, Dr Kate says Colville is a great place

“Colville is very popular [with students] because of the experience they get here. You deal with whatever walks in the door. They are also exposed to mind-body training, exercise and the outdoor environment.” Showing students the benefits of living in a small community is one of the key ways to grow the number of rural GPs, Dr Kate says. She has lived in Colville for 22 years after working as a sixth-year medical student in Coromandel Town. “It’s an awesome lifestyle and a rewarding work experience.” Another passion Dr Kate wants to share is for integrated medicine – combining orthodox or standard medicine with other health paradigms such as herbalism, Chinese medicine and mind-body treatments. Dr Kate is a fellow of the Australian College of Nutritional and Environmental Medicine and her patients come from afar to receive her integrated medicine. For this reason, the Colville Project is also looking at housing and training qualified GPs who want to learn about providing integrated care as part of their practice. “The Colville Project, in my mind, has the potential to be an inspirational village around the wellness industry and to support rural New Zealand to have experienced nurses and GPs,” Dr Kate says. “We can be valuable to New Zealand, not just our own community, with this concept and help other rural areas develop these sorts of projects for themselves.” l

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NIPPERS junior surf programme Coromandel Surf Life Saving New Zealand offers ‘Nippers’ programmes across the Coromandel during the summer holiday months, teaching kids how to be ‘surf smart’.

Nippers encourages kids to have fun and develop their water safety skills and confidence in the surf. It’s about developing tomorrow’s lifeguards and equipping kids with water skills for life.

Nippers programmes are provided by the following Surf Lifesaving Clubs: CLUB

JUNIOR SURF PROGRAMME DATES

Tairua

Registration: Mid October (start of school term four) Dates: December 27, 2018 to January 11, 2019 Ages: 6-16 years.

Pauanui

Registration: Online at www.pauanuilifeguards.org.nz Dates: Monday to Friday from December 27, 2018 – January 18, 2019 Ages: 7-13 years Special Event: Pauanui Junior Surf Carnival – January 4, 2019

Onemana

Registration: December 26, 2018 Dates: Every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday from December 26, 2018 – January 28, 2019. Ages: 5+ years Special Event: BBQ and prize giving on Sunday, January 28 (Auckland Anniversary weekend)

Whangamata

Registration: October 21, 2018 Dates: Weekend program runs every Sunday 10am-12pm until Christmas Day. Full time 6-week program starts December 27, 2018. Ages: 7-13 years

Whiritoa

Registration: December 27, 2018 Dates: December 28, 2018 – January 12, 2019 Ages: 7+ years Special Event: Whiritoa Junior Surf Carnival January 6, 2019

Waihi Beach

Registration: Sunday October 21, 2018. Dates: Every Sunday from October 21, 2018 until late February 2019. Ages: 6-13 years Special Event: Waihi Junior Surf Open day – Sunday. October 21, 2018.

NOTE: Dates for each programme may change, so remember to check with your local club direct regarding their Nippers programme. You can find their details and phone number on surflifesaving.org.nz

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Our Coromandel

Roll growth strong across Coromandel schools There are 21 schools across the Coromandel, including five high schools, which are experiencing strong growth in enrolments as the face of Coromandel communities change.

a School Whangamata Are

Mercury Bay Area School’s roll continues to climb as it caters to the growing number of families in the area.

GABRIELLA PITCHER – HEAD GIRL

Principal John Wright says in 2018 the school in Whitianga opened with 975 students, and was up to 1000 students by mid-year. The school has added between 35-40 new students each year for the last five years and he doesn’t expect this pattern to change in the near future. “The growth is all across the school, from five-year-olds right up to 19-year-olds, so it’s consistent with the number of families and young people coming into Whitianga and Mercury Bay,” Mr Wright says. Mercury Bay Area School has just opened six new classrooms this year and is seeking further classroom development. Whangamata Area School has also seen a huge leap in numbers, with the roll up by almost a third in the last two years to 480 students, as at July 2018. School principal Alistair Luke says the increase has come with the changing face of the town, with a number of young families moving to Whangamata and choosing to educate their children at the school. “It’s also due to the changing face of how people can work. You can be connected here, with broadband, and people are considering lifestyle. If you can do your job remotely, why wouldn’t you live in such a fantastic place?” Alistair says.

What do you love about living in the Coromandel and where is you favourite place? I love that the beach is so close – right there on our back doorstep – and it’s great in the summer because we don’t have to do anything, everyone comes to us. Whangamata is my favourite spot because of the beach and also the rivers. For a change, I love swimming in the fresh water at Wentworth Valley and Parakawai. What do you like about your school? That students range from age 5 – 18 so we get to share our life experiences with people of all different ages. I love the full school assemblies and spirit days where we get to hang out with the younger kids. I have 22 students in my year (year 13) and about 10 of us have been here since we were five years old, so we’ve been together most of our lives which is really cool.

REUBEN FLEETWOOD – HEAD BOY

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I will hopefully be going to Canterbury University to do civil engineering. We went to Vanuatu last year on a youth trip and built a water tank for one of the churches, which was an amazing, life-changing experience, so once I have completed my degree I would like to travel to undeveloped countries and do more work like that.

What have you enjoyed most about being head boy this year and do you have any advice to fellow students? PHOTO: JU-C IMAGES

Tairua School principal Brendan Finn says the school opened with 74 students in 2009 and had reached 164 students in July 2018.

“The Coromandel does provide a unique place to bring up a family and people are starting to see that now, and that life’s not all about work. Family is important.”

What’s next for you?

I like the fact that we are an area school so you don’t have to move schools as you get older and therefore you have life-long friendships and support. Now we are seniors, we are like a close-knit family.

Expansion has enabled the school to employ more teachers, run more sports teams, and get property projects off the ground, such as astro turfing the courts and a new roof and lighting for the gymnasium.

The school has seen an influx of young families moving to the area, with technology enabling them to relocate from larger cities and work remotely.

I had the opportunity to experience Anzac Day with our community. It was really cool to represent our school by holdings flags in the morning service and making a speech. My advice to other students would be to take all the opportunities you are offered, even if they are scary. I’ve learnt so much from these.

What do you like about your school?

The school gets regular enquiries from families looking to relocate. While the first round of growth was almost exclusively out-of-Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga are now catching up.

“We’ve had steady growth over the last four-to-five years of about 10 per cent a year,” Brendan says.

What have you enjoyed most about being head girl this year and do you have any advice to fellow students?

What do you love about living in the Coromandel and where is you favourite place? I’m a surfer so I love living here because we have world-class waves. I was born in Whitianga, but Whangamata would have to be my favourite place because of the surf and the people that are here. It’s a small town and you get to know everyone.

Moving into a role with more responsibilities has been a challenge for me, and I like a challenge. My proudest moment is the same as Gabriella’s, making a speech and representing the school on Anzac Day. My advice to fellow students would be don’t be scared to step up into leadership positions because you will end up regretting it if you don’t. I’ve also learnt so much from taking opportunities the school has given me and it has opened up so many doors. What’s next for you? Travelling and playing music. I will most likely head to Auckland and enrol in a music school there. Reuben is a talented young singer and song writer, check him out: www.facebook.com/ReubenFleetwoodofficial

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HIgh School leaders ELEANOR ‘ELLA’ TOMKINS – HEAD GIRL service. Writing this really made me think about what Anzac Day meant to me. I felt that when I spoke I was able to show the people there at the service my perspective and hopefully did my school proud. I’m just like a vast majority of 18-year-olds trying to figure out life and making that awkward, weird transition from teenager to adult. I would probably just say to explore everything that you can to find out what you enjoy, be kind to everyone and try to connect with people around you.

Mercury Bay Area School What do you like about your school? The opportunities you get offered. There are a wide range of choices and I have found the staff easy to get along with and they create a good vibe at school.

What’s next for you? What do you love about living in the Coromandel and where is you favourite place? I love the lifestyle that comes with living in the Coromandel. I was born in England and lived there until I was seven. I’m so lucky my parents made the decision to move here. It’s full of things to do, the weather is amazing and the coastal areas are breath-taking. My favourite place is Crayfish Bay. I go there often with family and friends. It’s such a picturesque place, not easily accessed and feels detached from the rest of the world. What do you like about your school? It is just an amazing thing to have been at one school your whole life. It gives the school its own community feel. Our school is always looking for ways to improve how they can make learning a better experience for us. I feel the teachers are dedicated to our learning and always want us to do our best. What have you enjoyed most about being head girl this year and do you have any advice to fellow students?

I am not sure of what I will be doing next year. There are many possibilities and I just haven’t found one that I am really passionate about yet. I am a competitive swimmer and would like to continue with swimming, so wherever I go there will definitely be a pool.

FLETCHER BALE – HEAD BOY What do you love about living in the Coromandel and where is you favourite place? I love the adventurous lifestyle you can have here – some of my favourite activities are scuba diving, fishing, surfing, tramping and camping. The ocean has a lot of opportunities to experience and it is a big part of my life. I also enjoy the climate and close-knit community we live in. Otama Beach is my favourite place because of its beautiful scenery, tranquil location and of course, awesome fishing and diving.

The opportunities the role has given me to be a part of the school and wider community. In particular, for Anzac Day this year I was asked to speak at the Matarangi

What have you enjoyed most about being head boy this year and do you have any advice to fellow students? Being part of the leadership team and being able to create opportunities for other students, as well as myself. My advice is to work hard, enjoy it and to make the most of it while it’s there – before going out into the real world. Take risks, because with risk comes reward. What’s next for you? I have created several opportunities for myself but I am unsure of which one I will choose yet. I would like to continue with my outdoor adventures, sport and recreation is what I thrive on, and Whitianga is a great place to experience a wide range of activities.

Mercury Bay.

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Our Coromandel HIgh School leaders What have you enjoyed most about being head girl this year and do you have any advice to fellow students?

h School Thames Hig

Our school ball in May was pretty big for me. The theme was ‘oriental starry night’. I had a role in organising it and had to give a speech to thank the people who helped. We invited the head students from other schools around the district. My advice to other students would be to make the most of being young, when you don’t have any major decisions to make.

SOPHIA CLARKE – HEAD GIRL What do you love about living in the Coromandel and where is you favourite place? I love that there’s so much to do – particularly in summer. I really like getting out in the environment – places like the Pinnacles, the local waterhole and the beach. Basically, everywhere in the Coromandel is a playground. Pauanui is my favourite place as it has been my home for 10 years. I love Pauanui Beach and Mount Pauanui.

VINCENT LEE – HEAD BOY What do you love about living in the Coromandel and where is you favourite place? I like that since the Coromandel is made up of heaps of small towns, I know lots of people from across the district. Tairua is my favourite place because a lot of my mates live there and I have had so many good times there on the beach. What do you like about your school? I love the people here. The students are all nice and friendly. Our teachers care about our students and will go out of their way to help us.

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What’s next for you? What do you like about your school? There are lots of opportunities and everyone is very inclusive of everyone – and there’s lots of support to have a go at everything. The teachers are really nice and everyone is friendly.

It’s a really big decision and I haven’t made it yet. I am thinking about engineering, which is why I took a lot of sciences this year, and I would like to continue living in Pauanui or a rural community.

What have you enjoyed most about being head boy this year and do you have any advice to fellow students? Being head boy has given me a lot of confidence. It has certainly taken me out of my comfort zone – for example giving the speech on behalf of the school at the Anzac Day public service – that’s probably been the best experience I have had so far as head boy. I’ve really enjoyed representing the school. To fellow students, if something is offered to you, grab it. This is something I started to do in the last couple of years and I wish I’d done that from when I started school. And remember to have fun. What’s next for you? I’m still trying to work that out but I will probably still be studying. Over summer I will be working as a beekeeper all over the Coromandel to help in our family business, Lee’s Bees.

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Pohutukawas, Thames Coast.

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Coromandel Area School EMMA O’BRIEN – HEAD GIRL

What do you love about living in the Coromandel and where is you favourite place?

What have you enjoyed most about being head girl this year and do you have any advice to fellow students?

There are lots of outdoors activities to do if you know where to look and I enjoy hunting, fishing and climbing. My favourite place would have to be a toss up between Fletcher’s Bay, away from the influx of tourists, or Crayfish Bay – a well-hidden gem of the Coromandel.

The team has been pretty onto it in getting activities done, so leading the team has been relatively smoother in comparison to the year before. My advice is to finish your final year (Year 13, NCEA Level 3) so you always have something to fall back on.

What do you like about your school? That it is small and therefore we are able to get a valuable one-on-one teaching experience. The school also offers ‘zoom classes’ which is a video conferencing software that enables us to learn a subject not offered at our school.

What’s next for you? So far I’ve got a trip planned with World Challenge to the India Himalayas. Then I will go to Norfolk Island with my friends and later England with my family. After travelling I would like to go to Wellington and study film at Victoria University.

Kereta Hill overlooking Manaia Harbour.

NATHAN JAMES – HEAD BOY What do you love about living in the Coromandel and where is you favourite place? The outdoor opportunities that we can do after school and during weekends such as fishing, hunting, kayaking, cycling and camping. We can easily do these without needing to travel large distances and we can do them whenever we want. It’s hard to pick a single place in the Coromandel as my favourite, but it would have to be between Waiau Falls or anywhere out on the water, either in the harbour or out in the gulf. Both of these places are good to get away from people for a while and just relax. What do you like about your school? As it is an area school, the interaction that happens between the seniors and juniors during sports days, school events, and everyday school life is great to see and be a part of. Another aspect I like is that because it’s not a large school most of the students know each so it’s easy to interact. What have you enjoyed most about being head boy this year and do you have any advice to fellow students? I’ve been a student here since Year 1 and as head boy it’s been enjoyable working with the rest of the student leadership team to organise and change things within the school. Also, having the chance to both represent my school at events and meet with other school leaders from around New Zealand. For those students who go to a small school and think they may be disadvantaged because of it, it’s not the

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size of the school and the range of subjects being taught that affects your education, it’s how much effort your willing to put into your own learning and whether your able to take control of your education to get the high marks. You can get excellence grades whether you’re at a school of 100 students or 1000. What’s next for you? I will likely be based in the Waikato Region either attending Waikato University studying towards my Bachelor of Engineering, or working at an engineering firm starting a cadetship working towards my qualification. I would hope to remain in New Zealand working initially, but if an opportunity to explore and work in other parts of the world comes along I would like to take it. Either way, I intend on making my way into the engineering industry.

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Te Wharekura o Manaia Te Wharekura o Manaia lies at the heart of the small community of Manaia which is about a 10-minute drive south of the Coromandel Township. The school is the only kura ā-iwi in the Hauraki region. It was designated as a kura ā-iwi in 2006 for years 1 – 8, then in 2008 gained Ministry of Education approval as a composite school for years 1 – 10. In 2009 this was extended to years 1 – 13. Te Wharekura o Manaia was invited by Our Coromandel to participate in this feature but declined.

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Digital detox

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Slipper Island, 3km off the eastern coast of the Coromandel, has been chosen as the spot for ‘digital detox’ retreats for teenagers, aiming to help them disconnect from technology and reconnect with themselves. Auckland yoga teacher Doug Moores has created the retreats to offer students an escape from the addictive nature of technology and negative distractions in order to reflect on who they truly are, learn new life competencies, and find their unique life purpose. Doug, who left the advertising industry in pursuit of his purpose, is running the camps through his company Y&X — set up to help young people discover their ‘Y’ purpose and ‘X’ – the possibilities available to them. “When you give people a purpose and remove the distractions holding them back, anything is possible,” Doug says. The first seven-day camp was planned for October 6-12, 2018 during the school holidays, after Our Coromandel went to print, with a second camp to be held over the summer months. Y&X plans to hold these camps regularly during school holidays, with Ohui Lodge in Opoutere being another potential site. Doug says he wanted to find the most inspirational place possible to host the camps. “I can’t think of much more beautiful beaches than Slipper Island and Opoutere,” he says. On the retreat, students will learn the principles of thinking, meditation, mindfulness, creativity and financial literacy – considered the core competencies for health, happiness and resilience in the modern world. A typical day will involve: Waking up with the sunrise, yoga and meditation, journaling, workshops, activities such as dance and watersports and helping with food preparation. In the evenings the students will be inspired by

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magical evening festivities featuring music, film and celebrations around the campfire, before ‘glamping’ or sleeping under the stars. The camp will incorporate fasting and a silent day. It should be challenging, mentally, physically and emotionally, Doug says. “This will be a life-changing experience.” A SPIRITUAL AWAKENING Working as a creative for advertising giants such as M&C Saatchi, Colenso and DDB in his twenties, Doug recalls feeling compromised working on campaigns for energy drinks and hamburgers. A “spiritual awakening” saw him quit advertising to become a yoga teacher, seeking to create a life of purpose and meaning. In his process of self-discovery, he explored research suggesting links between addictions to digital devices, particularly smart phones and social media, and mental health. Doug was behind the national ‘Digital Detox Day’ on July 1, which encouraged people to switch off their mobile devices and social media for the day. The point was to encourage healthier choices about the space given to digital devices in our lives. “We all should be taking some time off our phones and taking time to do what we love and time with family,” he says. Part of the plan of the digital detox retreats is to help teenagers re-direct their relationship to technology towards something that serves their goals and purpose, rather than something that can be a distraction and can depress. Doug gave a number of school talks about mindfulness and yoga during 2018. His digital detox retreats may not stop with teenagers or millennials. Down the track, he would like to extend the camps and courses to adults too. www.yandx.co

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Doug Moores.

Doug Moores’ tips for your own ‘digital detox’

Reconnect

People get addicted to digital devices because they want to feel connected and have positive emotions. Addictions interfere with our goals and the things that truly make us happy. So rather than connect with your smartphone, connect with what you love to do and the people you love to be around. A great place to start is to write down your goals, what you love to do and who you love to be with, and go do that.

Set boundaries

Did you know 80% of smartphone users check their mobile device within 15 minutes of waking up? To change our behaviour we must change our environment and set responsible boundaries. Remove smartphones and screens from bedrooms and during meal times. And create accountability with friends and family to enforce these boundaries.

Tell the truth

All behaviour change starts with telling the truth. Most people don’t understand how much time they spend on their devices and the alarming ways that technology has invaded our lives. You can find out how much you’re using your smartphone with apps like Moment. If you’re spending 3+ hours a day on your smartphone (which is average), and your time is worth $50 an hour that’s $150 a day or $54,000+ dollars a year! And that doesn’t include the cost to relationships, mental and physical health and other missed opportunities. l

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ENVIRONMENTAL FEATURE

'Bird Lady' Kuaotunu’s

Annemieke Kregting A ceramic pukeko sits on top of Annemieke Kregting’s mailbox and a little blue sign hanging on the side of her Kuaotunu home tells visitor s; “A crazy bird l ady lives here.”

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er children had the sign made for her, she says, as she scoops up a handful of banana peels from the kitchen bench and wanders towards her quarter acre backyard. Three bird aviaries are nestled amongst her vegetable gardens and the property’s original, tiny two-bedroom skyline bach has been converted into a bird rescue clinic.

Inside the clinic, bags of half-used intravenous fluids, donated by the local midwives, hang on the back wall and single-use hospital surgical equipment, donated by Waikato Hospital, sit in a neat shelving system. Annemieke tosses the banana skins into a plastic container filled with sawdust. “These are mealy bugs,” she says. “When birds come in we often have to figure out their diets. I was buying containers of these bugs for $60, then I figured out how to grow them myself.” Annemieke, known to many as Kuaotunu’s bird lady, is resourceful, not crazy. The former vet nurse moved from West Auckland to Kuaotunu with her husband Ben and their three children in 2005, intending on a quieter life. Soon after, she raised a rescued duckling and word of her nursing skills spread. “We raised the duckling and then more and more birds started turning up. It was all happening in our laundry at one stage.”

“SHE TREATS EVERYTHING FROM KERERU, DRUNK ON BERRIES, TO KINGFISHERS AND HOUSE SPARROWS that have flown into windows or sea birds that have crash-landed in the bush …”

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As a vet nurse Annemieke had worked with Auckland Bird Rescue so she turned to them for help. She is now one of 30 bird rescuers nationwide, part of the Wildlife Rehabilitators Network of New Zealand (WReNNZ). She also holds a wildlife rehabilitation permit from DOC. While Whitianga’s Mill Creek Bird Park provide some care services, Annemieke is the only bird rescuer working on the Coromandel Peninsula. She treats everything from kereru, drunk on berries, to kingfishers and house sparrows that have flown into windows, or sea birds that have crash-landed in the bush. Annemieke once treated an albatross found grounded on Waitaia beach. Unfortunately, with a broken and dislocated wing, it was unable to be saved. “We give them the three R’s. Rescue, rehabilitation and release. If they can’t make that last R, then we will have to let them go. Depending on the bird we may still release them and let mother nature decide.” The albatross now hangs, preserved in full flight, from the ceiling of the Mercury Bay Museum. Last summer Annemieke treated more than 50 fledgling penguins. Only five were able to be released. Storm surges and strong currents interfered with the baby penguins fledging and warmer water temperatures drove spawning fish, their food, further offshore. “It’s terribly sad. People ask, ‘can’t you just feed them some fish?’ They don’t realise by the time they’re rescued they have been so long without food their kidney and liver are already failing.” As numbers of birds coming into the clinic grow, Annemieke has created drop-off points for rescued birds around the Peninsula. Peninsula Vets in Whitianga and the Coromandel Pharmacy are two. She is currently looking for a volunteer in Tairua to bring rescued birds across the hill to Whitianga. The entire operation is funded by donations from locals, our Council’s Mercury Bay Community Board, koha from bird rescuers and a Napier op-shop called Wild Wings, which distributes funds throughout the WReNNZ network. Annemieke’s current patient is Harriet the harrier hawk (pictured). Harriet is suffering from lead poisoning after most likely eating a shot rabbit. Annemieke initially thought the hawk had been hit by a car. Its talons were fused shut and although it couldn’t tear its food, it was devouring mice whole. Annemieke called an avian specialist in Dunedin who said it looked like lead poisoning. “We tested its blood and the lead levels were sky high. It had obviously been feeding on something shot with lead pellets. You never stop learning in this job,” says Annemieke. The WReNNZ network means support or answers for Annemieke are often only a phone call, or mouse-click, away. She removes Harriet from her cage and wraps her in a pink towel. Annemieke’s skill is obvious as she gently finds Harriet’s fleshy underside and injects medication. Taking a bag of fluids off the back wall she smoothly inserts a feeding tube down the hawk’s throat and slowly syringes in fluids. She removes the tube and dabs Harriet’s mouth with the towel. “We don’t know if the treatment will work, but for now we are learning a lot. That’s the hardest part of my job, knowing when to carry on or when to stop. I don’t feel it’s for me to make that decision. There’s a point where I have done all I can, and mother nature has to take over.” Kuaotunu Bird Rescue has a Facebook page. To report sick, injured or dead wildlife call the DOC emergency hotline 0800 DOC HOT (0800 362 468) l

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kiwi

Caring for Coromandel

The grow th in the kiwi popul ation on the Coromandel is a great success story and a tribute to a number of hard-working voluntary groups across our region.

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hanks to the tireless work of many passionate and dedicated volunteers across the Coromandel, population growth for kiwi in our region is well above government targets, with no sign of slowing. The government has set a kiwi population growth target of two per cent. However, with a growth rate of 4.8 per cent in the Coromandel, the region is well and truly surpassing that. Paula Williams, project manager for the Project Kiwi Trust, is one of many people whose dedication to kiwi conservation is helping to ensure the numbers of the North Island brown kiwi in the Coromandel continue to rise. The Project Kiwi Trust was set up in 1996 to help manage kiwi conservation on the Kuaotunu Peninsula, north of Whitianga. It was born out of a desire by the local community to take charge and protect the rarest of the species, the North Island brown kiwi, and work on innovative ways of trapping their predators. A variety of methods and programmes are helping ensure the kiwi population grows, including a range of successful pest and predator management programmes. Similarly, Joanne Richards, involved with community relations at Thames Coast Kiwi Care, is proud of the work being done with her organisation to help save our humble national bird.

She acknowledges the community who came together in 2006 to fight for the survival and recovery of the small, declining remnant population of Coromandel brown kiwi on the Thames Coast – which was fast approaching extinction. “Fast-forward to 2018 and we now have a growing population of kiwi that have quadrupled in numbers, along with a growing community of people investing their land, time, money and support to this very important community conservation project,” Joanne says. KEEPING PREDATORS AT BAY Major predators for wild-hatched chicks include stoats and ferrets, weasels and cats, although Project Kiwi says it is yet to catch a ferret in its traps on the Kuaotunu region. Sadly however, the most preventable kiwi deaths are caused by uncontrolled dogs. Joanne says the message needs to be clear that kiwi need to be kept safe from dogs. “Dogs find the smell of kiwi irresistible, and as kiwi have a very weak chest structure, even a gentle squeeze by a dog can kill a kiwi,” Joanne says. Paula agrees dogs are one of the key threats to kiwi. “There is a misconception that it’s pig dogs causing the deaths, but we don’t believe they are. Pig dogs don’t go creating jobs for themselves as they already have one – they’re chasing a pig. It’s more likely someone’s pets At 3kg, this is the largest Operation Nest Egg (ONE) bird to be returned to Te Mata in April 2018.

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whose attention gets averted,” she says. What is particularly frustrating for kiwi conservation workers is that the needless deaths of kiwi have a much wider impact on the population than people realise. Paula believes kiwi deaths could be reduced by 70 per cent if people would learn more about how to control their dogs. Sadly, in June 2018 two kiwi were found dead at Port Charles, confirmed as the result of dogs. “We know of four losses due to dogs and what people might not know or understand is how that impacts on the big picture moving forward. It is particularly upsetting for kiwi pairs. It can mean the loss of potentially four eggs per year for 40 years, so that’s a number of chicks not being hatched which is a massive number not being born,” Paula says. Like other organisations, Thames Coast Kiwi Care promotes the Kiwi Avoidance Training (KAT) programme, run by the Department of Conservation (DOC). Find out more at www.kiwisforkiwi.org.nz This provides simple guidelines people can follow to ensure their dogs don’t become a problem for kiwi. These include: Follow kiwi safe dog rules, get your dogs KAT trained, keep your dogs on a lead in the bush, don’t let your dogs wander and keep dogs under control at all times on the Coromandel, especially in kiwi zones. Another good guideline is to avoid walking your dogs in areas where you are likely to encounter kiwi. OPERATION NEST EGG One very successful programme that Joanne and Paula are both part of is the collaborative initiative of Operation Nest Egg, a group effort to save wild kiwi eggs and chicks. Partially funded by Kiwis for kiwi, Operation Nest Egg sees groups such as The Project Kiwi Trust and Thames Coast Care work alongside DOC, other community kiwi conservation groups, researchers, various iwi, as well as captive-rearing facilities, to save this precious bird and ensure it’s around for future generations. Initiatives are underway throughout the year, with a specific focus each month. Between September and December of each


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year, the first clutch of eggs is lifted for hatching and rearing at Kiwi Encounter in Rotorua or the Auckland Zoo. From November through to March they work on transferring fourweek-old chicks from Kiwi Encounter or Auckland Zoo to Motutapu Island in the Hauraki Gulf which can only be achieved with the help of the many committed volunteers. The rest of the year involves lifting second clutch eggs for hatching and rearing at Kiwi Encounter or Auckland Zoo, releasing juvenile kiwi above 1kg in weight to mainland sites, transmitter re-straps, kiwi call surveys and trapping and reporting. The environment, as well as the kiwi in it, is of utmost importance to Project Kiwi. “We need the kiwi. If they were to become extinct we’d lose something that naturally occurred in a whole eco-system,” Paula says. “You would upset the balance, which upsets forest health over time. We need that balance, it’s really important,” Paula says. “With everything the land has seen, the one constant is kiwi. They want to be here. “This is a great environment for them so we may as well help them. They have adapted over time and shown a real thirst for survival,” Paula says. CARING FOR THE VOLUNTEERS A great thing about volunteering for these organisations is that people of all ages and abilities are welcome to put their hand up.

Photo: Department of Conservation Te Papa Atawhai (DOC Photographer)

A newly hatched Operation Nest Egg chick at the incubation facility at Auckland Zoo.

“Some of the older people who may not be as physically capable and can’t dig weeds or haul traps can still help, for example, by driving some of the distances we need to travel to pick up chicks,” Paula says. She is adamant about the care taken for not only the kiwi but the volunteers. “These are all community-based workers. They are making a difference and you must look after your people,” Paula says. Likewise, Joanne gets enormous satisfaction from the work she and her organisation does. “Making a positive difference to conservation and kiwi recovery on the Thames Coast, in helping wild kiwi thrive, is what drives us,” Joanne says. “We have a fantastic team, including landowners, trappers and volunteers, supporters and donors and together with our iwi, DOC and ONE partnership we achieve great rewards in kiwi recovery as a community.” Joanne urges anyone who is thinking about becoming a member or a volunteer to give it a go. “Being a member means you are a part of helping to maintain, upgrade and grow the project,” she says. “You will get to connect with individuals and communities to do our kiwi recovery work, attend public kiwi release and really make a difference to kiwi recovery. “Our supporters, volunteers and members come from far and wide, so if you have the heart for kiwi recovery on the Thames Coast, we’d love for more people to join us on this very rewarding and important conservation journey.” There are several organisations in the Coromandel region doing amazing work alongside The Thames Coast Kiwi Care and The Project Kiwi Trust. You can visit them all at the following websites, where you will find information about events and ways you can volunteer or become a member: www.thamescoastkiwicare.org www.projectkiwi.org.nz/ meg.org.nz/ www.kiwiretreat.co.nz/ www.kiwisforkiwi.org www.naturespace.org.nz/groups/kapowai-kiwi-care-group www.mahakirau.co.nz l

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Fields

of plenty An impassioned speech about saving the world, one tree at a time, pl anted the seed for what has become a successful partner ship that’s growing education and employment opportunities on the Coromandel Peninsul a.

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n 2017, Wintec partnered with local iwi Ngati Hei to establish a horticulture course at the old Whitianga Hospital site. Since then, more than 35 previously unemployed students have graduated, with many gaining employment. The course has also expanded to include arboriculture and landscape construction. It’s something lead tutor of the course Howard Saunders is immensely proud of. The resident of Hot Water Beach, who has close links to Ngati Hei, was asked to help establish the Whitianga course after he gave an impassioned speech at Wintec’s Thames campus about saving the planet one tree at a time. He spoke in his former capacity as head gardener for our Council and Wintec snapped him up. “They obviously liked what they heard because now I’m working for them. Everyone always thinks the problems are too big, that we can’t improve things like water quality. The truth is we can. People just need to start. It can be as simple as planting one waterway,” Howard says. Since the course started, Howard and his students have been involved in community maintenance work around Mercury Bay and are also working towards the restoration of Wharekaho Wetland, in preparation for the Captain Cook Tuia 250 landing commemorations in 2019 (read more about this on page 112-113). Wintec regional programme coordinator Fiona Taylor says students get involved in community projects as part of their work experience, which is a win for the community and the students. The courses are open to anyone and

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Wintec horticulture tutor Howard Saunders overlooking the Wharekaho Wetland.

are fee-free. They’re funded as part of the Government’s initiative to stimulate regional growth and encourage people back to the regions. The youngest student to date was 16 and the oldest was 72. “Howard helped identify a need for this education in Whitianga and he had the connections to Ngati Hei, which has provided the old hospital site venue,” Fiona says. “From a tiny acorn a mighty oak has grown.” The horticulture course covers soil science, plant establishment, weed identification and control, and foundation skills for continued specialist study, including a second term Applied Horticulture Services course specialising in landscape construction or aboriculture. The Horticulture General course teaches

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ENVIRONMENTAL FEATURE

Opposite page and this page: Wintec Aboriculture students working on trees at the Wharekaho Homestead.

Thinking differently about how we use our land Wintec is not the only education provider on the Coromandel offering learning opportunities in horticulture.

students how to grow native plants from seed and gives them the foundation skills to develop horticulture projects in their community, including ecological restoration. Along with work on the Wharekaho Wetland, Howard, who has 40 years industry experience, has also slowly been weaving his own knowledge of Maori herbs and plants through the curriculum. “Ngati Hei have a history of horticulture so we’re also sharing methodologies,” he says. The plan is to create a community garden on the old Whitianga Hospital site using Maorifocused horticulture principles. At Wharekaho, the wetland is nestled beneath the iwi’s homestead and old pa site, looking towards their maunga. More than 3000 natives provided by Waikato Regional Council are still to be planted including 1000 active manuka. Walkways will eventually weave their way out onto Wharekaho Beach. Howard says the site is particularly special for the iwi. A stand of pohutukawa on the Wharekaho Reserve marks the spot where Captain Cook received an official powhiri onto land in 1769. “We’re regenerating (the wetland) back from hard farmland to something like it once was. I think there is a slow growing awareness of how what we do on our land impacts not only our waterways, but our whole ecosystem. People are slowly wanting to learn more,” Howard says. More information: www.wintec.ac.nz l

At the other end of the coast, Pakaraka Permaculture in the Kauaeranga Valley is also encouraging people to think differently about how we use our land and source food.

grow $100 worth of produce on 100 square metres, easily saving $10,000 to $20,000 a year. Their own quarter-acre yields an astonishing eight tonnes of organic produce each year. “If you’re committed to producing food sustainably you can totally do it. It does take hard work. It’s not a way to make easy

Yotam and Niva Kay started their courses at Pakaraka, an off-the-grid organic garden, in 2016. Their workshops cater for home gardeners and beginners through to the more experienced gardeners wanting to run community or market gardens using permaculture principles. From October through to March they run one and two-day workshops on home gardening. They also offer a 10-week permaculture training programme with two students living on site for the duration.

Yotam and Niva Kay, with daughters Lily and Dina and dog Luna, at their Pakaraka Permaculture gardens.

“We’ve found that many of the people coming were looking to upskill for running community gardens. They come from all over the North Island,” Niva says. About 200 people have been through the courses. Niva says interest has also extended to restaurants with a shifting focus towards where food is being sourced. “The more disconnected we become through things like social media, the more we yearn for stories to connect us to the things like our food and the locality of food,” Niva says. Yotam says a good, efficient system can

money, but if you’re committed to doing something meaningful there are ways to make things happen,” Yotam says. Pakaraka also has chickens, ducks, a fruit forest, olives, chestnuts and 180 acres of regenerating native bush. The couple’s next steps include providing improved facilities, so they can run more courses year-round. “We want to empower people and to give them the skills to grow food and manage systems that will be good for their lifestyle and the environment,” Yotam says. www.pakarakafarm.co.nz l

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Environmental initiatives

we love

in the Coromandel

Community groups across the Coromandel are doing great things to help reduce our impact on the environment. Be inspired by some of these initiatives to help change our environmental path.

Take 3 for the sea this summer Colville Harbour Care (CHC) wants everyone – residents and visitors alike – to give the planet a helping hand this summer and “take 3 for the sea”. It’s not hard – just pick up three pieces of plastic rubbish and bin it, before it gets into the sea.

Kids walk the talk Whenuakite Country Kids (WCK) is urging its wider community to think twice before discarding used toothbrushes toothpaste tubes, floss containers and associated packaging. Instead, the early childhood centre wants people to drop them into the collection station in its carpark for recycling by Australasian firm TerraCycle.

CHC was formed in March 2017 with the aim of empowering its communities to work together to create a healthy harbour now and into the future. The team – two paid staff and more than 50 committed volunteers – do this by planting trees (about 2500 to date, grown in the group’s nursery) in the catchment and along the foreshore, controlling weeds and pests that prey on shorebirds, monitoring shellfish populations through its Marine Meters Squared project with Colville School, and picking up countless bags full of rubbish off beaches. Co-ordinator Beth Pearsall says people are welcomed with open arms at its beach clean-ups, monthly working bees and fundraising events.

As well as diverting rubbish from landfills, the centre receives a small donation for every piece sent away. WCK joined TerraCycle’s scheme this year as part of its passion for sustainability, says teacher and environmental and sustainability coordinator on the WCK governance committee, Rochelle Palmer.

www.colvilleharbourcare.org.nz www.facebook.com/colvilleharbourcare

“We compost food scraps, grow some of our own food, give excess food scraps to local chickens and sometimes are rewarded with eggs. We reuse vast amounts of materials and resources, we recycle, we have a worm farm, we make some

Beach cleans are an important part of CHC’s work. Photo: Colville Harbour Care

Boomerang Bags

2017. The group’s oldest member, octogenarian Phoebe MacDiarmid, was making reusable bags long before the group formed, and has attended every bee since. Phoebe takes unfinished bags home, too, regularly returning with 20 or 30. Another devotee doesn’t come to the bees, but often drops off 50 or so that she has sewn at home, says grateful group co-organiser Trish Hatfield.

Twice a month, volunteers young and old armed with scissors and sewing machines gather in Thames to transform pre-loved fabric into reusable shopping bags. They’re the Boomerang Bags Thames group – just one of several on the Coromandel, 70-plus nationwide and many hundreds internationally taking practical steps to stamp out single-use plastic bags. By summer 2018/19 the Thames group alone will have crafted well over 1000 bags since it held its first sewing bee in June

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From left: Phoebe MacDiarmid, daughter Hilary Rodley, and youngest helper Lillian Balfour turn out Boomerang Bags at a sewing bee.

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Despite this, the group can’t keep up with demand from local shops for the free bags, so would welcome with open arms more sewers and donations of fabric. www.boomerangbags.org/community/thames

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ENVIRONMENTAL FEATURE

Moehau Environment Group – protecting our natural environment Dogs may be man’s best friend, but they’re not a kiwi’s best friend, so keep your canine pals on a lead when you’re out and about this summer, urges Moehau Environment Group (MEG) – a non-profit volunteer organisation dedicated to protecting and enhancing the northern Coromandel Peninsula’s natural environment. A participant in last summer’s Cabbage Tree Family Fun Run at Little Bay, part of the summer programme.

Co-ordinated possum and rat control over 13,000 hectares of mostly private land is a huge part of its work, leading to the recovery or reintroduction of endangered species such as kiwi, kaka, North Island robin and pateke (brown teal). Education is important too. MEG’s hugely popular all-ages summer programme (which comes out in December 2018), will include Twilight Maori Legends & Puppets at Coromandel, a Kiwi Night Adventure at Port Charles, Starlight Cinema at Waikawau and Meet a Gecko. MEG’s school programme is back in 2019, with tree plantings, weed control, and pest monitoring and control. If you’d like to help MEG, but its backyard is a little far away, consider sponsoring a stoat trap in the kiwi sanctuary. It all helps towards its vision: “To become the largest open sanctuary in New Zealand; a remote coastal landscape where people live, work and holiday; wetlands and forests are regenerating; the birdsong is deafening; and treasured species such as kiwi, pateke, bellbird, whitehead thrive.”

Whenuakite Country Kids pupils, from left: Digby Palmer, George Semmens and Beaudyn Yearbury with a TerraCycle bin. Photo supplied by TerraCycle/WKC

*Read more about kiwi conservation on the Coromandel on page 128.

Fascinating finds are part of the fun in the summer programme.

www.meg.org.nz

of our own paper and our own beeswax wraps for lunch boxes, and encourage conscious decisionmaking around waste within our families. These initiatives are all driven by our children.”

Kitschy CAT Whangamata’s vintage-themed fundraising store Kitschy CAT is a great place to browse an eclectic range of décor and giftware. The story behind the store is not always known – that it was set up to help fund the efforts of the Whangamata CAT (Cat Adoption Team) – committed to helping lost, stray and feral cats in and around Whangamata and improve the local environment. The work involves rescuing and spaying and neutering the stray cats around Whangamata with what Kitschy Cat’s founder Victoria Cordery calls ‘TNR Intervention’ (trap, neuter, return). Special attention is given to the Whangamata TNR colony at the refuse station on the outskirts of town, where the TNR sustains an array of bird life. Many of the younger cats found there have been successfully socialised and fostered, while older ones, unable to be socialised, are released back after being de-sexed. Victoria cares for the homeless cats with the motto: Feed but don’t let them breed.

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Initially the feeding and rescue work was self-financed and Victoria’s budget was stretched to the limit, so she created Kitschy CAT for fundraising purposes. Staffed by volunteers, items sold instore are either donated or upcycled. Sales fund rescues, colony care and financial assistance for neutering family pets and this year Whangamata CAT celebrated the milestone of spaying more than 125 cats. Kitschy Cat: 310 Casement Rd, Whangamata Follow Whangamata CAT on Facebook: @WhangamataCAT

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Environmental initiatives we love Seagull Centre spreads its wings

The centre’s official logo.

With 12 staff; an average of 150 customers a day; an estimated revenue of $2.2 million over 12 years (with 80% reinvested into the community); and an estimated 125 tonnes of waste diverted from landfill annually, including a hovercraft – it’s fair to say the Seagull Centre in Thames is thriving.

But the award-winning resource recovery centre, which opened at the Thames Transfer Station in 2004, is not resting on its laurels. It runs fortnightly auctions, plans to expand on its successful trial last summer of the Re-Think upcycling trading unit, and its Resource Recovery Park expansion scheduled to open in November 2018 will effectively double its waste-diversion operations. Now the centre is in the throes of establishing an education and training facility. It will offer volunteer-run workshops to teach people how to repair and “recover” their own possessions, from furniture and sports equipment, to appliances and mechanical items. The education arm will include an environmental management and sustainability curriculum, all related to reducing, reusing and recycling waste. But there’s more. Future plans include taking the Seagull

Centre social enterprise concept to other regions, allowing them to benefit from the team’s vast knowledge and experience in establishing and running the centre, says business Seagull Centre Thames business manager Rick Brown. manager Rick Brown with a “This will be good for the customer. Photo: therubbishtrip.co.nz country as we all need to take responsibility for more effectively managing the resources we generate and consume.” The Seagull Centre began with a $50,000 start-up grant from our Council and a lease of council land. It was registered as a charity in 2008 and is overseen by a dedicated group of trustees. Domestic traffic bound for the Refuse Transfer Station to dump unwanted goods is directed through the Seagull Centre where staff help customers sort out furniture and equipment that can be sold at the centre’s shop or reconditioned in the new workshop. Seagull Centre Thames, 104 Burke St, Thames Opening hours: 9:30am-4pm Monday – Sunday Contact number: 028 406 2756 seagullcentrethames@gmail.com

Share and share alike Thames Produce Swap began in the summer of 2015, based around a simple but effective concept: bring something home-grown that you want to share with others, and take away what you need. Founder, Kauaeranga Valley resident, designer, keen gardener and motherof-three Sarah Anderson, was inspired by a friend in Taranaki who started a similar group, and loves how well it works, with 20 to 30 people regularly taking part.

Sarah designed the group’s poster.

“People are very generous and we have to encourage them to take stuff; they’re not greedy at all,” Sarah says. Anything home grown or homemade is welcome; expect to see fruit, vegetables, seedlings, seeds, flowers, herbs, preserves and baking. The swap days will kick off again in February 2019, on the first and third Saturdays of the month at Bright Smile Community Gardens in Mackay Street. Keep an eye on the group’s Facebook page for the start date: www.facebook.com/thamesproduceswap

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Thames Produce Swap founder Sarah Anderson, pictured with daughter Neesa, carted her produce by wheelbarrow to the early swap days.

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ENVIRONMENTAL FEATURE

FOREST SLAYING OUR GIANTS

THE TINY KILLER

Trees infected with kauri dieback.

K

auri dieback is a disease that is killing our mighty kauri trees. There is no known cure. In June 2018, a sixth site in the Coromandel was identified as having infected kauri trees. An aerial survey carried out by Waikato Regional Council (WRC) last year showed kauri with signs of poor health. WRC and the Department of Conservation (DOC) took samples at the site and confirmed the disease. The site is in forest on private property at Tairua. The disease had already been confirmed at five locations in Hukarahi, near Whitianga, and in the Whangapoua Forest. In response to the Tairua discovery, DOC closed the nearby Twin Kauri and Sailors Grave tracks until further notice. Check the DOC website www.doc.govt.nz for updates on these and other tracks that could be affected by kauri dieback. “Unfortunately, there’s no known cure for kauri dieback," Patrick Whaley, Waikato Regional Council's integrated catchment services manager says. "But we can stop it from infecting other kauri by limiting soil movement. That means fencing kauri from stock, keeping people out

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of the bush, killing feral animals, and having good machinery cleaning practices,” Mr Whaley says. Scientists think the disease may have been present in New Zealand since at least the early 1950s but the pathogen that causes it and its role in killing kauri was only identified in 2008. It can take years for the visible symptoms of kauri dieback to appear, so we can't assume any area where kauri grow is free of the disease. Symptoms include a yellowing and leaf loss in the canopy – although these can also be caused by drought, poor soil conditions, high winds, cattle and other animal movement under the tree. Often – but not always – lesions that bleed resin form at the base of the trunk. Kauri create shelter and nourishment for other species to grow and are a cornerstone of the indigenous forests of the upper North Island. A number of plants are found only, or primarily, in association with kauri – when kauri disappear, the kauri forest goes too. WHAT IS KAURI DIEBACK? • It's caused by a soil-borne, fungus-like organism called Phytophthora agathidicida (PA) that lives in soil and feeds on the

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• •

roots of kauri trees, eventually starving them to death. PA swims through soil on its own, but the main way it spreads is through human activity – for example through the movement of soil on people's boots or on vehicles, machinery and tools. It takes only a pinhead of soil to spread it. Hikers can unwittingly spread the disease by walking through mud or standing on the small feeding roots of kauri that have been infected. These roots extend to three times the distance of a kauri tree's canopy. PA can also be spread through wild animals or stock carrying infected soil.

HELP STOP THE SPREAD OF KAURI DIEBACK Cleaning stations for boots and equipment have been set up at track entrances. Use them to clean off mud and disinfect your gear. The disinfectant is non-toxic and biodegradable. Stay on the track and off kauri roots. See more about what is being done to protect kauri and how you can help on the Kauri Dieback Programme website www.kauridieback.co.nz/doing-more-toprotect-kauri

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PROTECTING Covering 400 kilometres, our Coromandel district has one of the largest coastlines in the country, stretching from our white sandy east coast beaches to the rugged rocky contrast of the western Thames coast up to Coromandel Town. Coastal living, here and in many other parts of New Zealand, involves being aware of and prepared for the natural processes changing our coastline, and hazards that can arise more suddenly. In 2018, a year of heavy storms with flooding, slips and damage to property has highlighted for many in our communities, and us as the Council, the impact serious weather events can have on our district. Our Council is focused on building ‘resilient’ coastal communities that can respond to and recover from these sorts of hazards that are common to many parts of New Zealand. Part of this involves looking at our preparedness for natural disasters, which sees us work closely with a range of other groups including Civil Defence, DOC, NZTA, Waikato Regional Council and iwi. All the planning and work we are doing to support our communities in this way comes together in our Coastal Management Strategy (CMS). We engaged with communities about our CMS last year, and we adopted it in June alongside the Council’s Long Term Plan. In 2018, as part of the CMS, our Council approved a budget of nearly $2.6 million over the next three years to investigate what coastal erosion and hazards we need to take into account around the Coromandel. We are also working in with new guidance for councils, from the Ministry for the Environment (MFE), setting out how to plan for climate change and the potential for rising sea levels.

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ENVIRONMENTAL FEATURE

OURCOAST In line with this guidance, we will consider a potential sea level rise of 1.88m by 2150 before approving any major new council infrastructure or renewals.

Our Council welcomed the guidelines, as we’ve been asking for Government-help to devise more sea level-proof planning rules. But we haven’t been shy in saying there’s more work to do in this space. Our Mayor Sandra Goudie says while the MFE guidance is a start, she wants to see more guidance from central government around projected sea level rises. “Central government needs to take the lead and set the direction, including providing mechanisms to help local governments financially,” Mayor Sandra says. “This is because so much of this type of risk is directed and controlled at a national level, and smaller councils such as ours need help.”

Here’s what else we’re doing around coastal management Our Council has also established a coastal engineering section within our infrastructure team and this year we hired a coastal engineer who has been out meeting with our communities to understand the different challenges we face across the district. As well as weather events, these include erosion, accretion, sea level rise (inundation) and tsunami. The knowledge our coastal communities share with us is invaluable. Please keep sharing what you know about what’s happening where you live. The best way to do this is to email: customer.services@tcdc.govt.nz We also have a project page on our website www.tcdc.govt.nz/coastalmanagement which provides more information on coastal management. One of the biggest challenges we face around coastal management, which we share with councils across the country, relates to the diverse ownership of coastal assets and, at times, the lack of clear ownership. In our area, ownership is spread across the Waikato Regional Council, New Zealand Transport Agency, the Department of Conservation and other public and private organizations, each with their own

performance drivers for managing coastal assets and environments. We have started a process to work with all groups to ensure a unified approach

to managing our coastline. Our Council appreciates the support from our communities while we work through all this involves. l

Meet our new coastal engineer Jan Joseph van der Vliet BSc EUR ING We now have a specialist coastal engineer Jan Joseph van der Vliet employed to implement the Coastal Management Strategy through the development of shoreline management plans. Jan is a civil engineering professional with more than 35 years’ experience across Europe, Africa, central and south-east Asia and the Pacific. Jan completed his engineering degree in the Netherlands and spent several years working with the Netherlands Development Organisation in places such as Zambia, Nepal and Cambodia, and eight years at the UK Environment Agency working on catchment and shoreline management plans. He joined our Council in January 2018 from the Marlborough District Council where he was the rivers investigation and planning engineer. On Jan’s first day with us in January 2018, the Thames Coast was reeling from a summer storm that brought wild weather, king tides and flooding. The Thames Coast Road (SH25), north of Thames, was ripped apart after massive waves pounded the road and many residents and holiday-makers in lowlying areas were evacuated. Needless to say, Jan went straight to work with the assessment of the storm damage in conjunction with all key stakeholders. Despite the challenges the Thames Coast communities faced, Jan says the response and recovery demonstrated communities can be resilient, which is ultimately what our Coastal Management Plan aims to achieve. Jan continues to roll up his sleeves, averaging at least two days each week

on site with coastal communities across the Coromandel, to see how they and nature has adapted to the changes and challenges they face on the coast. The Coromandel’s east and west coasts are vastly different in their nature and challenges. Adopting our Coastal Management Strategy in 2018 has been a positive step by our Council, Jan says, providing a more coordinated approach to how we manage and protect out coast. “This strategy sets us up to manage our coastlines for the next 50-100 years.” Jan says he feels privileged to live on the Coromandel and work with our communities every day. “Working on our coasts, I do remind myself how lucky I am. It is an outstanding area of natural beauty with very strong communities that are willing to roll up their sleeves for each other. The nature of my job provides me with the opportunity to visit our amazing beaches and coastlines,” Jan says. Jan is no stranger to the beauty of the Coromandel. Five years ago he was the centre manager of the Mahamudra Buddhist Centre in Colville Valley and he remains a member of its board of directors. He now lives in the hills above Ngarimu Bay, 10km north of Thames. When Jan’s not at work he loves to get out and enjoy the Coromandel outdoors particularly sailing, kayaking, hiking and exploring other countries and cultures. l

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Property planning made easy with our District Plan After a comprehensive review, our new District Plan will soon be fully operative.

District Plan review Every council in New Zealand is required to have a district plan. These plans manage the way land is used and subdivided and what natural, historic and cultural features should be protected. Our Proposed District Plan was publicly notified in December 2013 and it has gone through a thorough process of public consultation, submissions, hearings, variations and now appeals. • 7 2 individual appeals were lodged on the Proposed District Plan, containing 165 separate appeal points; • 4 10 other persons joined the appeals, as they had an interest in an appeal point; • T he appeals and appeal points were separated into 25 topics.

Councils must review their plan every 10 years and our review has been going on since 2013. We now expect the final appeals to our Proposed District Plan to be settled very soon and once this has happened then it becomes the Operative District Plan.

Using the District Plan To see how our District Plan applies to your property, go to our Line of Enquiry tool. You’ll find it on our Council’s website at www.tcdc.govt.nz/dpd

You can use Line of Enquiry to search the District Plan, using a property address or a zone as a starting point. Just type in the address, or select a zone from the menu. The relevant rules are extracted and provided in a printable document. For example, the rules around subdividing a property; or which rules apply in a zone or overlay, such as the Coastal Environment Line or the Natural Character overlays. Line of Enquiry also shows the planning maps for the selected property that are generated in our SMART Maps system. SMART Maps is an online map application that allows you to explore a collection of maps focused on property, planning, parks and reserves, hazards and much more. See it at www.tcdc.govt.nz/smart

As Our Coromandel Magazine 2018-19 went to press, we were expecting almost all the appeals to have been settled through Environment Court-assisted mediations and hearings. The Environment Court has been driving the process forward to try to settle all the appeals quickly to enable Council to make the Plan fully operative as soon as possible. Where an appeal has not been settled, the rules of the old (Operative) District Plan relating to that appeal will still apply. Check with our Customer Services team on 07 868 0200 or email customer.services@tcdc.govt.nz if you’re not sure which Plan’s rules apply in your circumstances.

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Long Term Plan

maps the journey

The Long Term Pl an (LTP) is the key budget and pl anning document every council in the country prepares to serve as a roadmap for budgets, projects and services for the next 10 year s. Every three year s it is renewed. In June 2018 our Council adopted the 2018-2028 LTP, with an average district rates increase of 3.32% in the 2018/19 financial year. “We’ve struck the right balance between financial prudence on behalf of our ratepayers and paying for the maintenance and upgrades to essential infrastructure that we need,” Mayor Sandra Goudie says. “I’d like to acknowledge the work our Councillors, Community Board members and Council staff have put into preparing this Long Term Plan – it’s been many months in the making,” Mayor Sandra says.

The LTP went out for public feedback in March and April 2018 and the engagement we had was phenomenal: • 620 people came to 19 public meetings • 785 submissions – more than we’ve had on an LTP for some time • 128 submitters spoke at Council hearings • Our publicity campaign included billboards, polls on social media, emails, direct mail to all our ratepayers and ads in print, radio and online Read the full 2018-2028 Long Term Plan on our website at

www.tcdc.govt.nz/ltp

Here is a summary of some of the major decisions our elected members made following the consultation:

Sub-regional aquatic facility, Thames:

Pottery Lane extension, Coromandel Town:

Work on a replacement for Thames Centennial Pool will continue, as it’s due for replacement by 2027. As the pool covers an urupa/burial site, a location at the south end of the Sir Keith Park Memorial Airfield is being investigated for the new pool. With sufficient external funding, a sub-regional aquatic facility could be built, instead of a like-forlike replacement. It was clear from submissions to the 2018-2028 Long Term Plan that people in other parts of the district would like improved swimming facilities – so we’ll look into how this can be funded. Both projects will be a major consultation as part of the 2021-2031 Long Term Plan.

Pottery Lane will be extended to reduce commercial traffic on Kapanga Road, the main retail street.

Road maintenance on 29 currently unmaintained roads: Council decided to examine whether maintaining each of them to a standard to receive the NZTA subsidy is feasible. If it is, that’s what we’ll do; if not, we’ll consider the alternatives for any given road.

Wentworth Valley Road, Whangamata: The seal on this road will be extended to where the road ends at the Department of Conservation campground.

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Dalmeny’s Bridge (Hot Water Beach Road): $50,000 has been allocated by Council to investigate widening and raising the bridge over the Whenuakite River on Hot Water Beach Road, known locally as Dalmeny’s Bridge. If widening and raising the bridge is considered cost effective, this will be consulted on as part of the 2019/20 Annual Plan or the next Long Term Plan.

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Where is your rates money spent? Water Supply 11%

Solid Waste 6% Council 17%

Photo: WRC

Wastewater 16%

Planning & Regulation 5% Stormwater 4%

Coastal erosion works: A budget of $400,000 is available in 2018/19 to undertake coastal erosion protection in Flaxmill Bay. We will also be investigating a longer-term solution for coastal erosion protection in Cooks Beach. Coastal erosion works will be confirmed each year, with priorities for funding based on risk profiles.

www.tcdc.govt.nz/coastalmanagement

Protection of People and the Environment 2%

Roads and Footpaths 23%

What we build and maintain:

Photo: Nathan Howes

481 km Sealed roads 216 km Unsealed roads 152 Bridges 9 Water treatment plants 48 Reservoirs

Coastal hazard risk assessments:Â Council decided to budget $2.6 million over the first three years of this Long Term Plan to examine coastal hazards. Both Council and our communities are clear that we face great risk and expense from storm events and coastal inundation in our district, and it is important that we operate with the best information to be able to respond to these risks.

www.tcdc.govt.nz/cms

Rates bill date change We have changed our rates instalment dates to 15 October, 15 February and 15 May and we’ll be sending out the rates notices in September, January and April. This is to avoid a rates bill just before Christmas. We have recalculated direct debits and written to the affected ratepayers to tell them the new payment amounts.

www.tcdc.govt.nz/rates

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Community Spaces and Development 15%

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545 km Water pipeline treatment plants 10 Wastewater

pump stations 134 Wastewater manholes 5846 Wastewater

2 Airfields pool 1 Swimming

15 Cemeteries

(8 are operational)

and jetties 13 Wharves managed boat ramps 21 Council

and skateparks 43 Playgrounds

91 Public toilets

centres 14 Community and public halls

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detention ponds 6 Stormwater Stormwater pipelines 221 km

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G

We’re surrounded by water on the Coromandel, so it’s easy to think of it as a free resource that will never run out. But the population in some of our communities multiplies 10-fold over our summer months, which is also when the ability to keep taking water from our streams and bores comes under pressure from dry weather. We have some significant projects underway to ensure we keep providing safe and reliable drinking water and wastewater services for our communities year-around. Here is a map of our water and wastewater treatment plants across the district, and the volume of water they produce or wastewater treated each year.

OAMARU BAY WASTEWATER

3,796m3

Water treatment facilities We provide safe, potable, fresh water supplies to our communities via nine urban and three rural water supply schemes. The work our Council is doing to reduce water consumption and wastage is outlined in our Water Demand Strategy, which was adopted by our Council in September 2017. www.tcdc.govt.nz/waterdemandstrategy We rely on the cooperation of households and businesses to meet our water savings goals. Some of the things you can do to help us manage demand and reduce water wastage over our peak summer months are outlined in the box below.

Wastewater treatment We have 10 wastewater treatment plants across the district that treat water and solids that go into our wastewater network from bathrooms, kitchens and laundries to return it to the environment in an eco-friendly way. In recent years we have built three modern wastewater plants to service Tairua-Pauanui, Whangamata and Whitianga. Treated wastewater from these plants is amongst the highest quality produced in New Zealand and is re-used for irrigation in our forests, parks and golf courses. Remember, only human waste and toilet paper should be flushed down the toilet. Everything else, including things such as wipes, sanitary products, dental floss and nappies, and fat, oil and grease from cooking, should be put in the bin.

COROMANDEL TOWN WASTEWATER

208,686m3

COROMANDEL TOWN WATER

388,379m3

WHITIANGA WATER

1,260,510m3

WHITIANGA WASTEWATER

901,092m3

Top 5 smart water conservation tips 1. Wait until you can do full loads before you wash dishes or use

THAMES WATER

1,208,015m3

the washing machine.

2. Don’t run the water when brushing your teeth. 3. For cool drinking water, fill a jug and keep it in the fridge.

Running water to cool it down can waste 10 litres a minute.

4. For lawns, apply the ‘step test’ – if grass springs back after you walk on it, it doesn’t need watering.

5. If your toilet has a dual flush button, use the half flush. * Please report water wastage and water leaks to our customer services team on 07 868 0200. www.tcdc.govt.nz/water

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THAMES WASTEWATER

1,590,738m3


ROWING with the flow MATARANGI WATER

228,946m3

KEY

MATARANGI WASTEWATER

126,203m3

Wastewater treatment plants Total wastewater treated (m3) 2016/2017 year

COOKS BEACH WASTEWATER

93,9093

Water treatment plants Total volume of water produced (m3) 2016/2017 year

HAHEI WATER

19,137m3

HAHEI WASTEWATER

48,885m3

MAJOR PROJECTS Here are some of the projects we have underway across the District.

Drinking water Our Council has major projects underway to upgrade our water treatment plants to ensure compliance with drinking water standards set by the Ministry of Health. This essentially involves the installation of membrane filtration at our treatment plants.

TAIRUA WATER

356,877m3

PAUANUI/ TAIRUA WASTEWATER

600,961m3

In total, $16 million, as set out in our 2018-2028 Long Term Plan, is being spent to fund upgrades at all our plants over the next three years. Our plant at Thames has already been upgraded, and Whitianga is where we are working currently.

Wastewater PAUANUI WATER

241,193m3

We have just awarded a contract for closed-circuit television (CCTV) inspection and assessment of the hundreds of kilometres of wastewater and stormwater pipes we maintain across our district. This gives us the ability to see into the pipes to inspect their condition and identify where we can be proactive with maintenance, renewals and repair work. Consent renewal will also drive significant projects to upgrade wastewater treatment plants to comply with increasing quality requirements of disposal treatments.

ONEMANA WATER

44,382m3

ONEMANA WASTEWATER

71,666m3

WHANGAMATA WASTEWATER

692,132m3

WHANGAMATA WATER

1,065,239m3

FLUSH YOUR TAPS The Ministry of Health reminds all of us to flush a mug of drinking water from our taps every morning, to help remove metals that might have dissolved in plumbing fittings overnight. The Ministry recommends this simple precaution for all New Zealand households, including those on public and private water supplies.

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Surf Life Saving New Zealand

On patrol in the Coromandel The red and yellow flags of Surf Life Saving New Zealand go hand-in-hand with the Kiwi summer. Across New Zealand, more than 5000 surf lifeguards patrol our beaches, keeping people safe at what is New Zealand’s favourite playground. On Coromandel beaches last year, 189 people were rescued from potentially life-

Keeping surf safe • Choose a lifeguarded beach • Swim between the flags • Keep your children within arm’s reach • Ask a lifeguard for advice as conditions can change regularly along the beach

threatening situations and a further 265 people were helped to safety. Coromandel surf lifeguards put in a whopping 27,554 hours of volunteer patrolling during the summer alone. They also performed first aid to nearly 700 people on our beaches. Find out more about how you can help support our lifeguards and the huge contribution they make to our coastal communities below.

Supporting your local lifeguards Surf Life Saving New Zealand is the charity representing 74 Surf Life Saving Clubs, who patrol up to 94 beaches across New Zealand. Since 1910, extraordinary New Zealanders have been volunteering their time to patrol

New Zealand beaches. They rely on public donations to train and equip surf lifeguards to save lives and help keep their local community safe at the beach. This summer, Surf Life Saving Clubs in the Coromandel area will be carrying out fundraising activities as part of the Surf Life Saving Summer Appeal during the Christmas and New Year period. Keep an eye out for them at local campgrounds and festivals, and please show your support to your local lifeguards. If you don’t see a fundraiser, you can still show your support by donating online at www.surflifesaving.org.nz

Get involved Anyone can become a Surf Life Saving NZ volunteer. Their clubs need people to help in a range of areas - be it keeping an eye on the surf from patrol towers, helping teach young kids surf safety or simply driving support vehicles. To find out more about becoming a lifeguard or a patrol support member, take a look at www.surflifesaving.org.nz or contact your local club.

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• If you’re caught in a rip – lie on your back and FLOAT. Put your hand up and call for help • If you spot someone in trouble, call 111 and ask for Police • If in doubt, stay out!

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www.surflifesaving.org.nz


ADVE RTO RIAL

Taking the hassle out of holiday rubbish It’s a problem holiday home owners are all too familiar with.

It’s Sunday night and you’re packing up to leave after a weekend at the bach, when you remember about the rubbish. Perhaps you’re out of prepaid rubbish bags and the transfer station is closed. The best option seems to be to put the smelly bags of rubbish in your car and take them home to deal with. Coastal Bins Managing Director Murray Bain (pictured) saw this scenario play out time and time again when staying with friends around the Coromandel and thought, there’s got to be a better way. The solution is the innovative on-demand backdoor service newly launched by Coastal Bins. When it’s time to leave the bach, home owners simply text the word ‘bin’ and an allocated service number to the Coastal Bins hotline, and the bin is booked for collection the following week. There’s no need to leave the bin out on the street. It gets collected from the back door, emptied, and returned with a fresh bin liner – ready to go when you return. It also stops the unsightly created by 9:53 seagull-ravaged rubbish Ad1 Holiday Home Owners 2.pdf mess 1 24/07/18 AM bags, when these are left kerbside well ahead of collection date.

(Check out the local community Facebook pages to see how this raises the ire of the locals who end up cleaning up the mess). With a high percentage of absentee holiday home owners on the Coromandel, Murray believes there’s a big market for the on-demand rubbish collection service. Coastal Bins entered the market in June 2018 offering residential wheelie bin, skip bin and commercial bin services. The waste collection company services the entire Coromandel as well as Northern Waikato and the Hauraki district. Murray is an industry long-timer with 19 years’ experience in waste management, holding senior roles with some of New Zealand’s largest waste companies, and a period setting up his own waste company Red Bins in Te Awamutu (sold in 2012). Business partner Michael Barlow, born and raised in Thames, also has 10 years’ industry experience and sits on the establishment board of the Thames Business Association. Being back in a start-up company is energising, Murray says, and Coastal Bins is all about “doing things better” and taking advantage of technology. The team has received positive reception to the new service, with frequent comments on the tidiness of the trucks, great customer service and an easy-to-use website. Coastal Bins’ white trucks are washed every weekend. “Just because we work with rubbish, doesn’t mean we have to look rubbish,” Murray says. coastalbins.co.nz

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One of our fortunes on the Coromandel is our wealth of talented artists whose works are showcased internationally. You can check out our local painters, weavers, carvers, jewellers and mixed-media artists and entrepreneurs throughout the year at the Mercury Bay Open Arts Tour www.mercurybay-artescape.com which is held the first two weekends in March, the Coromandel Arts Tour www.coromandelartstour.co.nz in October or regular exhibitions held by local galleries or organisations such as the Thames Society of Arts www.thamessocietyofarts.org.nz In this feature, feast your eyes on the creative works of a small selection of some of our wonderful Coromandel artists. Interested in the arts? Creative Coromandel is your go-to destination for work opportunities, event listings, artist profiles and creative inspiration. www.creativecoromandel.co.nz

FATU FEU'U

PAINTER & CARVER THORNTON BAY and SAMOA Fatu Feu’u’s three majestic mo’ai stand guard over Thornton Bay, watching the Firth of Thames. Their colour is the bold red of Samoa’s high chiefs and orators, signifying their stature. Standing at around five metres tall, Fatu says they are small compared to the famous Rapa Nui mo’ai: the giant chisel-faced carvings of Easter Island.

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You’ve likely noticed the mo’ai if you’ve driven the Thames Coast Road. Fatu says tourists often pull over to photograph them. Some have even wandered onto the property thinking the carefully-kept garden, with the modern fale on the lawn, is a cafe or gallery. Fatu’s story begins in Samoa, where he spent his childhood in and out of hospital with meningitis. Home was, and still is for much of the year, in the village of Poutasi, on the southern side of Samoa’s main island Upolu. His early memories shape his work now. When he paints he thinks of women in the village making tapa in the fale, the traditional open-sided buildings. When he carves, he thinks of his father and uncles building houses without nails.

To a certain extent, he did that at his next job at a commercial textile company where he became involved in design, as well as

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He got a break, finding good dealers to represent him, and found his groove creating paintings of contemporary Polynesian icons and symbols. His work is now exhibited and collected all over the world. finding

He got a break, good dealers to represent him, and found his groove creating paintings of contemporary Polynesian icons and symbols.

Fatu came to New Zealand in the mid-sixties with dreams of art school, but there were bills to pay and then children to feed. So, Fatu worked as a labourer, in a dry cleaner’s, and in a factory in Otara to make ends meet. But his determination to make art never wavered. He painted at weekends, and made it his mission to meet as many artists as possible. In what became a kind of informal apprenticeship, he got to know people such as Barry Brickell, Tony Fomison, Pat Hanly, and Colin McCahon. Their key message was “just go and do art!”

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doing the marketing. But eventually he got sick of it, leaving the good pay and the company car to go and paint.

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In 2009, the Samoa earthquake and tsunami caused extensive damage to Poutasi. Dozens of people were killed and most of the buildings destroyed. Fatu, who has a large studio in the village, is dedicated to helping the people build a sustainable future through art. He’s set up an art centre there, with funding from The Warehouse founder Sir Stephen Tindall. It’s a place where future artists are mentored and taught, and where they can sell their art. Fatu’s artist friends from New Zealand and further afield come to help. He’s developing a destination sculpture garden linking several villages, which will lead to local employment and valuable tourist dollars. Back in New Zealand he founded Tautai, an organisation that supports and promotes Pacific arts and artists. They also do workshops in schools, universities, communities and prisons. He says he’s happy that it’s now part of his life to help other people. l Fatu Feu’u’s work in on display at The Miranda Art Gallery www.mirandafarm.co.nz and you can learn more about Tautei at www.tautai.org

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KAY OGILVIE POTTER WYUNA BAY Kay Ogilvie has always had some sort of craft project on the go. Pottery is her main focus these days, having fallen in love with clay twenty-five years ago. Kay works in her studio, tucked under her home, high up in Wyuna Bay. There’s an almost 360 degree view of water stretching towards Coromandel Town and Waiheke Island. Sometimes, when it’s still, she can hear dolphins playing in the water below. Kay works with her back to the idyllic view; not just because it could prove a little distracting. “It’s because of the light. It comes over my shoulders on to my table [where she does her potting]. This environment makes me happy. I love bright colours. I love the light airy feel.” Those bright colours are evident in many of her pieces; there are carefully rolled flowers, bowls and cups in turquoise, indigo and bright rose. Her favourite projects at the moment are bowls decorated with several different glazes and pieces of coloured glass.

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When she moved to the Coromandel, Kay was hugely motivated to be self-sufficient. She founded the Coromandel’s first craft shop, which is now Weta Design. She sewed. With children tucked into bed, she would cut, sew and iron three dresses all in one evening in order to stock her shop. She made jewellery, did leatherwork, made little ashtrays and bowls, and crocheted her hand-spun garments. Once in the electric kiln next to her studio, this glass melts and swirls into the glazes. Her creations include birds, bats and figurines of women. Before she worked with clay, Kay had many crafty pursuits. When her now-adult children were tiny, she earned a living by spinning wool and crocheting it up into all kinds of items. Whenever she had time, even when watching the kids at the beach, she worked her hook and yarn to create long, flared, hippyish jerkins, tank tops, shawls, hats – all in earthy colours and natural fibres.

Pottery came later when, as an adult student, Kay went to polytech in Whangarei to learn some specific technical skills after years of working on instinct. There, with a supportive tutor and a key to the studio, she’d pack three meals and work for hours, producing coffee cup after coffee cup until she got it right. Turns out her husband Chris is a dab hand at making things too; he’s a former mechanic and founder of The Waterworks "... this environment makes in Coromandel; a hands-on me happy. I love bright theme park, full of upcycled water-powered contraptions. colours. I love the light www.thewaterworks.co.nz

airy feel."

Their home is full of things they’ve designed and produced themselves. Wooden window frames, smooth and curvy wooden drawers, an internal wooden staircase, the outside concrete stairs complete with a slide for the grandkids, and even a stained glass window – “My first and last!’ says Kay – in their front door, which was made by Chris. And she’s now turned her hand to painting. l You can find Kay in her studio at 1800 Wyuna Beach Road. Her work is for sale there, as well as at Weta in Coromandel Town, Mosaic in Whitianga, and The Thames Society of Arts in Tararu, as well as galleries in Hamilton, Whangarei, Mount Maunganui and Helena Bay in Northland. And she’s on Facebook: www.facebook.com/Kay-Ogilvies-Pottery-work-101517966558735

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JOHN BOYD

PAINTER & ILLUSTRATOR OPITO BAY How can you define your style when you’re skilled enough to paint anything and everything? In John Boyd’s case you don’t. His motto is ‘just have fun’ and that’s how he goes about his art. Close-up sketches of native birds, painted sunsets at the beach, illustrated pukekos playing pool; if that’s what grabs him on the day, he’ll go for it. As a teenager John says he couldn’t get out of school fast enough. Aged 15, he knocked on doors up and down Queen Street in Auckland looking for a job until he landed a spot at the Smith and Brown furniture store. That’s where he started to learn the trade of signwriting. The team was in charge of window dressings and in-store displays. One day, that might have meant painting backdrops of the Auckland night sky to hang behind furniture in the window. The next job might have seen him hefting huge rolls of carpet up around the store for a display. He spent hours making flowers out of crepe paper. At one point, live chicks even made it into a window. Variety is what he loves, and he found it at Smith and Brown. After a similar role at Hannah’s shoe shop on Queen Street, John went on to work for The Coca-Cola Company, where he painted and put up signs for the company’s drink brands all over town. He went on to lead the team.

Opito Bay, which John calls home.

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And after a day’s work, he’d often paint at home, for himself, into the night. John and his wife Rachel moved to Opito Bay twenty years ago. After their children had left home in Auckland, they decided they’d relocate instead of driving back and forth from Mount Albert. They’re among just a handful of permanent residents in the bay. The view’s a constant inspiration for John, who takes lots of digital photographs to capture a moment. With a regular supply of photogenic sunsets and ever-changing views, John’s been known to charge over the road to the beach with his iPad to snap a particularly interesting wave for future reference. John also teaches art through the Whitianga Art Group. The classes are based around what other artists in the group are interested in, and his main advice for them is to have After a day’s fun. He also takes commissions, such as drawing cartoon portraits from photos. work, he’d You might even find him with a brush in often paint his hand, giving one of the neighbour’s at home, for baches a fresh lick of paint. l

himself, into the night.

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GUITY EVELYN PAINTER OPOUTERE There’s a room in Guity Evelyn’s house dedicated to the application of gold dust. It’s where she carries out the delicate task of adding a fine layer of metallic dust to her works, giving them their light-catching shimmer. It means she doesn’t have to move her equipment around when she’s adding a new dimension to a piece. It’s that kind of focus that’s important to Guity. A lack of distractions means she can fully dive into her work. She cherishes the peace, quiet and beauty of Opoutere, where she can preserve her energy to concentrate on painting. Gold dust and gold leaf feature in many of her pieces, as well as beautiful, rich colours such as turquoise and scarlet. She creates conceptual landscapes, dancers, pretty faces. Some pieces nod towards Pasifika.

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Her husband David is also creative, producing his own range of jewellery. He’s an important part of Guity’s work as he sources materials for her. That includes stones such as quartz and lapis lazuli from Afghanistan which he grinds down for her to use in her painting. Guity describes herself as a French-Kiwi. She’s spent the last few decades straddling the globe, between Nice in her native France and Opoutere. Home here is a on piece of land with an incredible, ever-changing view across the Wharekawa Harbour. She and David fell in love

with the place as tourists. They’ve developed the property from the original log cabin to a big family home, with a dedicated space for visitors and art collectors to visit and view the art. Their four children grew up there and in France, surrounded by art and artists. Guity’s paintings line the walls of the studio. The garden too is a place for art; pieces by Barry Brickell and Fatu Feu’u are in the grounds. There are also 3,000 natives they planted on their 10 acres, and some flavours of Provence, such as rosemary and lavender. Her inspiration, she says, is fueled by her international life. She says the south of France and the Coromandel have similar geographic beauty. While their time in Nice is more people oriented, back here it’s a “delightful, quiet life” where she has time to transfer her inspiration onto canvas. Guity says “an artist’s calling is to share.” She enthuses over her work and her journey as a painter. She often uses the word “blessed” to describe her life. She has also been able to support herself living off her creativity, even as a student.

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Guity believes the role of artists is to inspire others, to guide them to fall in love with art.

She spent her childhood in and out of hospital after an accident. Stuck in a hospital with a broken back, painting became her solace and her passion.

People travel from all over the world to collect her art. She no longer exhibits because her reputation means people seek her out. Her pieces can found in all corners of the globe, including one that hangs next to a Picasso on a superyacht.

Guity believes the role of artists is to inspire others, to guide them to fall in love with art. She feels, having mentored other artists, it’s possible to live a life dedicated to art. l You can view Guity’s work at her studio Topadahill Art Studios, 289 Opoutere Road, Opoutere Beach. Phone 07 865 7266

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The life story of

a lucky bugger A sk motor sport enthusiasts of the 1960s and 70s which Kiwi touring car driver made the biggest impression on the sport and the answer is, resoundingly, Paul Fahey.

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hether it was in smaller engine cars, such as his Cortina and Escort, the V8 Mustangs or the V6 Capri, Paul Fahey was the dominant figure in New Zealand saloon car racing for close to a decade. During that time, he had more wins at Pukehoke, Levin, Bay Park and Wigram than any other driver, and he defeated all of the Australian touring car champions of the period. The saloon car legend is now in his mid-eighties and lives in Pauanui with his wife of 60 years, Kath. More than 40 years since he last raced, his legacy Paul and Kath Fahey. continues to inspire and is now documented in a book: ‘Paul Fahey – A Celebration of a Kiwi Motorsport Legend’, published in 2017. In retirement, Paul is often asked to speak to car and motorcycle clubs and service groups, and on one occasion a member of the audience said if he ever wrote a book, it should be titled: ‘The Life Story of Lucky Bugger’. “I suppose I have been a lucky bugger,” Paul says from his deck in Pauanui on a winter morning in 2018. “I’ve been a lucky bugger all my life and that

luck has seen me achieve an awful lot.” In his book, Paul writes: “I was lucky to survive when I was racing motorbikes. The year I was racing in Europe, 11 riders died – including my teammate Bill Aislabie. There are about 150 riders buried in the Isle of Man cemetery. The Manx GP and the TT on the Isle of Man have taken the lives of 252 riders. “Looking back, I was young, fearless and bulletproof. I believed it wouldn’t happen to me. I knew motor sport was dangerous, but it was in my nature. It was what I wanted to do. I sit and watch the Isle of Man now and think, ‘How bloody dangerous is that?!’ If you gave me ten million dollars I wouldn’t’ go and do it today. It’s strange watching it now and having to remind myself that I’ve actually done it. I’ve done it and I was one of the lucky ones – I survived.” STARTING WITH MOTOR BIKES Paul’s career in the motor industry started when he left Mt Albert Grammar School at 15 to pump gas. The petrol station offered him a motor mechanic apprenticeship and when his parents moved to live on the North Shore, he bought a motorbike to get to work. The motorbikes got bigger and faster. Paul’s racing career started on the beaches and grass tracks of Auckland on a rebuilt 350 Matchless. He worked at night in his parents’ garage repairing “anything with a motor” to buy money for a road racing bike, while the

dream of The Isle of Man – one of the most dangerous racing events in the world – started to dominate his life. In 1956, Paul was nominated for selection for the NZTT team for the Isle of Man and raced at the Snaefell Mountain Course, after which he went on to the European Grand Prix circuit, with the best result of a fifth in the 1956 Dutch TT at Assen. In the same year at the Grand Prix in Leipzig, East Germany, Paul won the 350 class race but suffered a serious accident on the first lap of the 500 race and a badly broken leg put an end to his motorbike racing. He hung up his leathers and returned to New Zealand. He still has rods in his leg from hip to knee and another rod from knee to ankle. GETTING INTO BUSINESS… AND CARS Back in New Zealand, a new chapter began when Paul started selling cars and, in 1957, bought a car yard in Papakura, marking the start of a successful car dealership career. Paul Fahey European Cars in Otahuhu thrived during the 1980s and was sold for the St Heliers Mazda franchise he ran until he was 70. The car business provided his introduction to motor car racing. As a spectator at the Ardmore Grand Prix in 1957, he got the urge to start competing again. He joined a car club, racking up enough points in Kath’s 1956 Volkswagen Beetle to gain a competition licence in the early 1960s. Early adventures in the Volkswagen led to 10 years of very competitive saloon racing and the start of a good 10 years winning at Pukekohe, leading a strong field that included Australian champions Bob Jane and Pete Geogheghan. In his early races he drove in shorts, tee shirt and sand shoes, later adopting the safer flameretardant overalls. Paul used his success in the motor trade to his advantage, which gave him the means to race. He had a Shell station on the Papakura car yard and was successful enough to get Shell sponsorship, which helped him buy a series of cars and assisted with travel to the US. During the 1968/69 season Paul Fahey won on every track in New Zealand, winning a total Paul Fahey in the PDL Mustang.

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Paul had a plane for 20 years but a health scare curtailed his flying and heralded the move to Pauanui full-time. His prostate cancer diagnosis at the age of 70 was only detected when he went for his pilot’s medical test. He says he is “one of the lucky ones” as he caught it early.

“WE HAVE ALWAYS CALLED PAUANUI ‘PARADISE’. We’re lucky enough to have travelled extensively and we haven’t found a place where we think we would rather live than Pauanui.” of 18 out of 20 starts. In 1968 he was a tour leader for a group of Kiwis to see Indy and four Formula 1 races in Europe. His feats behind the wheel of well-known cars the Shelby Mustang, the Lotus Cortina and the Ford Escort, here and overseas, soon saw him established as this country’s foremost saloon car driver. Paul Fahey was also among the founding fathers of the V8 muscle cars that race today, helping introduce the genre to New Zealand of what is now a multi-million dollar business. New Zealand racing driver Jim Richards writes in the foreword of Paul’s book that it wasn’t just Paul’s racing speed that was

Paul Fahey at Ballaugh Bridge on the Isle of Man.

impressive. “He was also smart in the way he went about his racing. “Paul always had the right car at the right time for whatever class he was competing in, but just as importantly, he surrounded himself with great people to ensure he had the best possible chance of success.” Paul says in his book: “When I was racing, I copped some flak for being too professional, but when I compare myself to today’s V8 drivers, I was a novice in most ways…” Paul doesn’t consider himself a dare devil. He says he believes his skills came from learning to drive a motorbike fast, then transitioning the two-wheel skills to four-wheel drive. LIVING IN PARADISE After retiring from motor racing in 1975, Paul hankered for two things: flying and boating. Yet Kath wanted a bach. She thanks the Pauanui air strip for helping Paul to agree to her wish and in their early years of owning a property in Pauanui, Kath made the journey in her car while Paul flew his Harvard. If the back seat was free he would bring the chilly bins and the golf clubs.

Paul Fahey at home in Pauanui.

REFLECTING ON A CAREER Kath and Paul enjoy their life in Pauanui, where they say they have wonderful neighbours and friends. “We have always called Pauanui ‘paradise’. We’re lucky enough to have travelled extensively and we haven’t found a place where we think we would rather live than Pauanui.” Paul is a regular figure on the local Pauanui golf courses, playing one or two times a week. He watches motorsport on television and says if he could race a car tomorrow, it would be a Ford Falcon in the V8 series, similar to those Scott McLaughlin and Fabian Coulthard drive. As he reflects on his career, there’s no sense of unfinished business. He’s content. “When I look back… yeah, I have been incredibly lucky and done everything I wanted to do in life. I’ve survived lots of scares and accidents and I’m still here, so someone was looking after me.” Paul and Kath have a daughter Karen who lives in Canada and a grandson Charles. Throughout the years, Kath has been his biggest supporter. “I’ve always said the biggest piece of luck I ever had was meeting her.” l

Paul Fahey • One of few that represented New Zealand internationally on both two wheels and four. • W on the first production car race at Pukekohe, which was a precursor to the Benson & Hedges series. • Dominated saloon car racing for a decade between 1965-1975, winning the greatest number of races of any driver during that decade and defeating all Australian touring car champions in that period. • C redited with being one of the pioneers of V8 racing which continues to thrive today. • H ad more wins at Pukekohe, Levin, Bay Park and Wigram than any other saloon car driver. • Book: ‘Paul Fahey – A Celebration of a Kiwi Motorsport Legend’ published in 2017. • F avourite car from racing years: The Alan Mann Escort. • Favourite track: Bay Park.

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We are all

Civil Defence

When a civil defence emergency strikes a community, the first people on the scene to help are always survivors who rush to help their neighbours. It’s what Craig Fugate, the director of the US Federal Emergency Management Agency under President Barack Obama, calls the “wholecommunity response”. For the first several hours, or perhaps 24 hours to several days, survivors of a major natural disaster such as an earthquake, storm or tsunami, will probably be on their own. And in that period, who’s going to help them with their urgent needs? Communities are on their own until help from outside can arrive. That is why New Zealand Civil Defence says, “We are all Civil Defence”, and that’s why the agency pays so much attention to educating us about the kinds of resources we will need for the first 72 hours after a disaster strikes.

After the Canterbury earthquakes of 2010 and 2011, most assistance came from people close by. From neighbours, existing community groups like faith-based organisations, or other voluntary organisations. This underlines the importance of emergency management being community-driven. The storm that hit the Firth of Thames on 5 January 2018 highlighted the fact that all of our communities need to be better prepared and ready to self-activate during an emergency. Most of our communities are in low-lying coastal areas and residents and visitors have to consider that they may be isolated for several days after an emergency event. Utilities and infrastructure such as drinking water, electricity, phone lines, and roads may be out of action.

Te Puru on 5 January 2018.

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Thames (Shortland) Wharf on 5 January 2018.

Te Puru Community Response Group The 5 January 2018 storm tide put the Te Puru Community Response Group to the test. The group consists of a core of residents who are in contact with Thames Valley Civil Defence and Emergency Management staff. In co-ordination with Civil Defence they had done an audit of local resources and set up a community phone tree.

Essentially, individuals, organisations and communities have to own and be responsible for their own preparedness. No one knows a community better than the people that live and work within it, so this is why our Council, in conjunction with Civil Defence, is bringing communities together to prepare Community Response Plans. A Community Response Plan is a plan that includes local known hazards, notification/alerting options, contact information (phone trees, for example), evacuation plans, what resources are available and who are the vulnerable members in the community. It is important that this plan is shared with the entire community and regularly updated. Our Council and Civil Defence will educate and guide each Community Response Group (CRG) through the process and facilitate training and offer support; however, it is vital that plans are owned by each community. Each community’s plan should cover how the community plans to self-activate and respond in the first 72 hours of a large-scale emergency. If the processes and structures set up are working well, then the “official” Civil Defence response will support what is already underway, not override it, once it’s up and running. In March 2018, Helen Flynn (of the Civil Defence Thames Valley Emergency Operating Area) and Pamela Balt (from our Council’s Emergency Management Unit) visited Manaia School, Kikowhakarere Bay, Oamaru Bay, Papa Aroha, Waitete Bay, Port Charles, Tapu, Ngarimu Bay, Thornton Bay and Whakatete Bay to talk about community response planning. They met very passionate and interested people who were prepared to work together to establish Community Response Groups. We are now working with these groups to help formulate their plans. In time, we’ll be working our way around the entire district to help all our communities come up with their own emergency response plans. To learn more about community response planning and emergency preparedness in general, go to the Waikato Region Civil Defence Group website: www.waikatoregioncdemg.govt.nz

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Slips and damage to the Thames Coast Road (SH25) both north and south of Te Puru cut the community off for most of the day, and stranded about 60 motorists. The response group mobilised, and tried to help residents in the path of the extreme high tide move possessions away from the rising water. A valuable lesson from the day was that the community phone tree broke down because many people were outside their homes, either helping themselves or assisting their neighbours. People whose homes were uninhabitable quickly found shelter with nearby friends or relatives, but there was another group of people who needed assistance – the motorists stuck on the Thames Coast Rd. “They were all lined up on the side of the road with nowhere to go, in the pouring rain, and lots of children, so our community hall became the place for transients to be,” response group member Lois McCullough says. They opened the community hall and residents who lived up the hill and were unaffected by the storm brought food. “It was safe and dry. We ran around and grabbed things for the kids to do, like colouring books and board games. Even the adults were a bit bored in the end, so they were playing Scrabble,” Lois says. “Then we thought, well, you potentially could be here all night because we can’t get out ... so a lot of the local community offered up spare bedrooms and beds and mattresses and so we were billeting people around the community if necessary.” A few days after the storm, Civil Defence Minister Kris Faafoi drove up the Thames Coast Road for a look at the damage and met residents of Te Puru. “Speaking to that small group in Te Puru, in the heat of an event they were able to respond because they were organised,” he says. See the Te Puru Community Response Group describe in their own words how they reacted on 5 January: https://youtu.be/Ht-YFxDJY_Q

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We are lucky to be able to take our best canine buddies almost anywhere, whether it’s down to the beach or for a stroll into town for a bite to eat. However, to make it a place for everyone to enjoy, we have a few simple rules for dogs and handlers when sharing our beaches, reserves and public spaces. We need to balance safety in public spaces between dog people, non-dog people and the environment. Everyone should be able to feel safe. Even if your dog is a good, obedient dog, some people aren’t dog people, so that’s why dogs must be on lead in most areas unless specified. Remember, dogs are not allowed in cemeteries, sports fields and within five metres of playgrounds. Our bylaws team will be spending more time stopping and talking to dog owners if dogs aren’t on-lead where they should be. They will have information to share on our dog control bylaw and a free dog lead for you to take home. Make sure your holiday accommodation has somewhere to keep your pet safe, secure and under control (and in the shade) where they will not be a nuisance to neighbours. We have a Dog Control Bylaw to strike a balance between our diverse community needs and preferences. We also have legal requirements under the Dog Control Act 1996 for community health and safety, and providing exercise and recreational opportunities for dogs and their owners. We also need to protect indigenous wildlife such as New Zealand dotterel and kiwi. Dogs are usually prohibited from protected bird habitats from Labour Weekend to 1 March, which is during dotterel breeding season. In between 20 December and 31 January and public holiday weekends, most beaches have time restrictions for when dogs are allowed on the beach, if at all. If you’re in doubt about when and where you can walk your dog,

Alcohol Control Bylaw

We reviewed our Liquor Ban Bylaw this year and are replacing it with the Alcohol Control Bylaw. This went out for public consultation in July and our Council was due to adopt the final bylaw on 30 October. The bylaw will regulate where and when people can possess or consume alcohol in public places through a mix of permanent and seasonal bans on alcohol in our bigger town centres, beaches and reserves. For more information and to see the final bylaw once it’s adopted, visit: www.tcdc.govt.nz/alcoholcontrol

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A responsible dog owner… • Picks up their dog’s poo. Please carry bags with you or use one of our dog poo bag dispensers across the district. • Carries a lead at all times and has their dog under control when off-lead. Unless you are in a designated dog exercise area, you must have your dog on a lead. • Ensures their dog is registered and wears a registration tag at all times. If your dog is registered in another district, an ID with your name, address and mobile phone number will help if your dog gets lost or picked up by a Dog Control Officer. • Makes sure their dog has access to shade, fresh drinking water and never leaves their dog in a hot car. • Remembers the five-second rule: Whenever you take your dog outside, place the back of your hand on the pavement. If you can’t hold it there for five seconds, it’s too hot to walk your dog.

keep an eye out for signs and maps, pop into one of our Council offices or head to our website www.tcdc.govt.nz/dogrules For information on dog access to conservation land check www.doc.govt.nz

Fire Permits

Our Council no longer issues fire permits. Fire and Emergency New Zealand has taken over responsibility for issuing all permits for fires in the open in the Coromandel and overseeing fire safety as a result of a change in legislation. • T o apply for a fire permit, go to the FENZ website www.checkitsalright.nz • I f you see an out-of-control fire, call 111.

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Elections 2019

r u o y e k a M d r a e h e c i o v

Should you run for Council or one of the Coromandel’s Community Boards? ABSOLUTELY! Why? No matter who you are or what you do, you have something to offer. So give it some thought. As an elected member you would be one of the decision-makers who will help define the future of our communities. You would be able to have a say in helping the Coromandel achieve its full potential and participate in meeting the current and future needs of our district for infrastructure, services and regulations such as bylaws.

vote in our district’s local elections. If you’ve been registered on our Ratepayer Electoral Roll previously and own the same property, you’ll be contacted by our Electoral Office by post around April 2019. You need to confirm you still own the property, so fill in and return the form you are sent and you will automatically receive a voting pack for the 2019 local elections in the Coromandel.

You’ve got until July 2019 to decide.

If you’re already on the Ratepayer Electoral Roll but have moved, contact our Electoral Office to update your details in order to vote:

Visit www.tcdc.govt.nz/elections for more information. The Department of Internal Affairs website www.localcouncils.govt.nz has information about the 2019 local elections, including key dates.

Post:

Come October 2019, should you vote? ABSOLUTELY! Why?

TCDC Electoral Office, Level 10, 45 Queen Street, Auckland

Phone: 0800 922 822 Fax:

• E very election matters and the choices you make at voting time make a difference.

+ 64 9 307 7443

Email: info@electionservices.org.nz If you’ve recently bought a property on the Coromandel and don’t live here, contact the Electoral Office.

• Y our vote sends a message about what sort of district you want and expect. • Th e greater the participation levels in communities, the more likely Council decisions and actions will match short and long-term community objectives.

If you live here permanently, you are automatically enrolled on the Residential Electoral Roll if you are registered as a Parliamentary elector.

So make sure your voice is counted.

Not sure you’re registered to vote? Check by:

Don’t live on the Coromandel but own a property here? You can vote here too.

Check the Electoral Commission website on

Phoning 0800 ENROLNOW (0800 367 656); or

www.elections.org.nz

You, or a representative from a group of joint property owners, can

Women voting in a 1913 by-election. In 1893 New Zealand became the first selfgoverning country in which all women had the right to vote, after a new Electoral Act was signed into law. But it didn’t come easy, supporters of women’s suffrage, including Kate Sheppard, campaigned for years for the right for women to vote.

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’ n i h s a l p S around

Swimming is a skill that opens up a world of incredible experiences and our Thames Centennial Pool, on the corner of Mackay Street and State Highway 25, offers a range of learn-to-swim and training opportunities, as well as a space for relaxation and a bit of fun. The 25m, wood burner-heated, Council-staffed facility has a growing reputation for producing some of the country’s best competitive juniors, with youngsters who’ve moved through the lessons now attending squad training. By using a dome over the cooler months, the pool is able to operate year-round and is used by people from across the Coromandel and Hauraki Districts for various activities such as scuba diving and surf life saving training. Local school students visit the pool daily over the summer period, and almost 55,000 individual swim sessions were recorded over the 2017-18 summer season. The pool currently hosts the Thames Valley swim sports competition. The Thames Swim Club recently received funding for electronic touch timing pads at one end of each lane, used in swimming competitions to record a swimmer’s race time and place. This will open up opportunities to host higher-level swim meets and the swim times that are logged will count towards national qualifications. Here are some of the programmes available at the Thames Centennial Pool: • Swim Cool Swim School ~ Pre-school – Active movement in water: Encourages babies and children to develop vital skills while becoming confident, capable and safer in the water. Lessons are available for babies from age six months to five years. ~ School-age learn to swim: Courses are available to children aged five years and older. There are normally 300-400 students enrolled each term. The course can cater for all ages and abilities, from beginner to competitive. Private one-on-one lessons are also available. • Swim Academy: Offers squads for swimmers from beginner to competitive level and open water squads that cater for masters, triathletes, ocean and social swimmers. • Lane swimming: Why not swim before work, or take the time to have a lunchtime swim? There are always lanes available for swimming. • Aqua aerobics: A low-intensity aerobic workout suitable for all ages, which allows you to work at your own pace while having fun in the pool. • Giant pool toy: You’ll find a giant, fun, inflatable pool toy up on weekends in the summer months.

Summer Hours

Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri: 6am - 8am/11am - 6:30pm Wednesday: 6am – 6:30pm Saturday: 11am - 5pm Sunday: 11am - 5pm

Winter Hours

Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri: 6am - 8am/11am - 6:30pm Wednesday: 6am - 6:30pm Saturday: Closed Sunday: 10am - 4pm Closed public holidays For more information on the pool including prices and lessons see www.tcdc.govt.nz/swim or phone 07 868 8441

Community Pools There are also community pools across the District, located at the local schools. Check out their Facebook pages for updates, opening hours and prices: ~ Whangamata Area School www.facebook.com/WhangamataCommunityPool ~ Mercury Bay Area School www.facebook.com/MercuryBayCommunitySwimmingPool ~ Coromandel Area School www.facebook.com/CoromandelCommunitySwimmingPool

Thames replacement pool The Thames Centennial Pool is due for replacement by 2027. A new site at the south end of Thames airfield has been found as the current location covers an urupā/burial ground. Consultations with pool users and other stakeholders are being held to formulate a master plan for the new facility. It was clear from our 20182028 Long Term Plan submissions that people in other parts of the district would like improved swimming facilities – so we’ll look into how this can be funded. This will be a major consultation as part of the 2021-2031 Long Term Plan. www.tcdc.govt.nz/thamesreplacementpool

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Our Mayor Sandra Goudie at the Thames Centennial Pool for a photo shoot during the Thames 150 commemorations.


DISTRICT LIBRARY NEWS

Love your Library Our district libraries have far more to offer than just a good book. Membership is open to anyone, so if you are just visiting for your annual summer holiday you can access all our three district libraries in Thames, Tairua and Mercury Bay and what they have to offer while you’re here. Our libraries can provide a world of discovery, with information and services that will engage, educate and entertain you. Whether it’s the latest best-selling fiction novels, special New Zealand non-fiction works, magazines, movies and TV series or children’s books – you’ll find something for everyone. And if you can’t find exactly what you need, it is likely our librarians can assist with our inter-loan service where we can usually borrow on your behalf from a library elsewhere in New Zealand. You don’t have to be a member to pay a visit. With printing and photocopying facilities, free wifi and publiclyavailable computers, our libraries are a great place to get things done in the digital world. Thunder is getting into the spirit Our libraries of Lego, practising for the school holidays Lego activities. have become a community hub, a space where people can meet and share ideas as well as a place for work or play. Our libraries are also home to a range of regular events where people can learn new things and socialise. Monthly book clubs in Whitianga and Thames are a great chance to meet other book lovers over a coffee and discover your next favourite book, while

the family history sessions with the New Zealand Society of Genealogists can help you solve those mysteries in your family tree. In Thames, hear some great pearls of wisdom from our resident knitting group, who drop in every Tuesday for a ‘knit and natter’. For kids, they also hold popular Lego Clubs, hands-on school holiday activities and exciting reading challenges. Toddler Time is also a great place to meet other parents and introduce your little ones to life at the library. Not mobile and can’t make it to one of our district libraries? Our libraries can come to you. The housebound service matches volunteers to patrons who cannot visit the library and deliver books or talking books to the home. Our libraries continue to expand the collection of things they lend. At the Thames library this now includes musical instruments, tools and games. Keep an eye

Matariki at Mercury Bay Library.

out for new collections and events as well as more information on what our libraries have to offer at www.tcdc.govt.nz/libraries or follow on Facebook www.facebook.com/tcdclibraries

Community libraries Libraries in Coromandel Town, Pauanui, Whangamata, Hahei, Kuaotunu and Ferry Landing are community libraries; run separately by groups of volunteers and each have their own separate rules and registrations. www.tcdc.govt.nz/communitylibraries Whangamata Library 620 Port Road 07 865 7416 Mon to Fri: 10am - 4pm Saturday: 10am - 12pm

THAMES LIBRARY 503 MACKAY ST, THAMES 3500 07 868 6616 thameslibrary@tcdc.govt.nz

Coromandel Town Library 130 Kapanga Road Mon, Tues and Thurs: 10am - 1pm Wed and Fri: 10am - 4pm Saturday: 10am - 12pm

TAIRUA LIBRARY 2 MANAIA RD, TAIRUA 3508 07 864 7960 tairualibrary@tcdc.govt.nz

Pauanui Library 23 Centre Way 078648105 Mon to Sat: 9.30am - 12pm

MERCURY BAY LIBRARY 22 VICTORIA ST, WHITIANGA 3510 07 866 4776 mblibrary@tcdc.govt.nz

OPENING HOURS: Mon, Tues, Thurs and Fri: 9am - 5pm. Wednesday: 9:30pm - 5pm. Saturday: 9am - 12pm. O U R

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If you see an issue with the State Highway call The Transport Agency on: 0800 44 44 49. For local roads call: Thames-Coromandel District Council: 07 868 0200 Hauraki District Council: 07 862 8609

For emergencies call: 111 Note: some areas have limited cell phone coverage.

Colville

HaHei KuaotunU Whangapoua Whitianga Matarangi coroglen Coromandel

SLOW DOWN WHEN WET

Tapu

TAiRua Whenuakite

PAUANUI

Whangamata

WHIRITOA

Waihi

Te Puru

Thames Kopu

Paeroa Waitakaruru

SH25A, often called the Kopu Hikuai Road opened in 1967. SH25 has 270km of fully sealed road and approximately 983 curves. Over 500,000 people visit the Coromandel each year.

Everyone wears SEATBELTS

Keep LEFT

NO talking on Mobile Phones

NO overtaking on yellow lines

1.4 million vehicles drove on SH25A in 2016. On average, 40-50 motorcycles ride the Coromandel loop each day.


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Summer Kerbside Collections Onemana & Opoutere

Whangamata

Pauanui

SH25 to Kopu-Hikuai Road

Monday

Monday

Monday

Wednesday

Wednesday

Saturday

Saturday

Saturday

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 9:00am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 9:00am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 9:00am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Summer Weekly Kerbside Collection

Summer Weekly Kerbside Collection

Summer Weekly Kerbside Collection

STARTS 27 December 2018 ENDS 9 February 2019

STARTS 29 December 2018 ENDS 9 February 2019

STARTS 27 December 2018 ENDS 9 February 2019

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

Mercury Bay North Kuaotunu to Whangapoua

Coromandel Rural North

Coromandel Town & Te Kouma Wednesday

Tuesday

Tuesday

Friday

Friday

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 9:00am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 9:00am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 9:00am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Summer Weekly Kerbside Collection

Summer Weekly Kerbside Collection

Summer Weekly Kerbside Collection

STARTS 26 December 2018 ENDS 9 February 2019

STARTS 26 December 2018 ENDS 9 February 2019

STARTS 27 December 2018 ENDS 7 February 2019

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

Summer Refuse Transfer Station Hours Monday 17 December 2018 – Sunday 24 February 2019 All seven of our Refuse Transfer Stations are open Saturday 10:30am to 5:30pm Sunday and Public Holidays 10:30am to 6:30pm For locations and weekday hours go to www.tcdc.govt.nz/rts 168

www.tcdc.govt.nz/rts O U R

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Collections will be one day later following the Christmas Day, Auckland Anniversary and Waitangi Day public holidays – except the Saturday collections, which don’t change.

Tairua

Whitianga Town

Mercury Bay South

Including Whenuakite and SH25 north to Wade Road

Including Centennial Heights and Wharekaho

East of SH25

Monday

Monday

Tuesday

Thursday

Thursday

Friday

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 9:00am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 9:00am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 9:00am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Summer Weekly Kerbside Collection

Summer Weekly Kerbside Collection

Summer Weekly Kerbside Collection

STARTS 28 December 2018 ENDS 8 February 2019

STARTS 28 December 2018 ENDS 8 February 2019

STARTS 26 December 2018 ENDS 9 February 2019

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

Thames Coast & Manaia Wednesday 26 December 2018

Thames and Surrounds Puriri Village North to Tararu

Week 1

007

Bond Street Bin 1

Do not remove from this address

Tue 1

Thursday

Tuesday 1 January 2019

27 December 2018

1 or 2

Week 2

27 December 2018 Wednesday 2 January 2019

Wednesday

Wednesday 9 January 2019

Wednesday

Wednesday 16 January 2019

Wednesday

Wednesday 23 January 2019

Wednesday 30 January 2019

Thursday

Thursday 31 January 2019

Tuesday 5 February 2019

Thursday

Thursday 7 February 2019

Tuesday 8 January 2019

9 January 2019

Tuesday 15 January 2019

16 January 2019

Tuesday 22 January 2019

23 January 209 31 January 2019 7 February 2019

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 7:30am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Summer Kerbside Collection STARTS 26 December 2018 ENDS 5 February 2019

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

Please put your Kerbside collections out by 7:30am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Summer Kerbside Collection STARTS 27 December 2018 ENDS 7 February 2019

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

South of Puriri Village

Friday 28 December 2018

Thursday

Wednesday

2 January 2019

Thames South Rural Thursday 3 January 2019 Thursday 10 January 2019 Thursday 17 January 2019 Thursday 24 January 2019 Friday 1 February 2019 Friday 8 February 2019 Please put your Kerbside collections out by 7:30am We only collect glass left in official Council crates.

Summer Kerbside Collection STARTS 28 December 2018 ENDS 8 February 2019

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

Kerbside rubbish and recycling collection top tips Please place your blue Council rubbish bags on the kerbside by your property for collection and not hanging from trees or utility poles. If you’re worried about pests getting into your bags and strewing rubbish about, you can get a gullinator (pictured) from one of our offices for $15. These are made from sturdy mesh and sit over rubbish bags to protect them from gulls and other pests.

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Please don’t fill your crate for recyclable glass to overfilling. You can put out more than one crate. If you need extras, you can get them from our offices for $25. Please don’t put out broken crates – we’ll replace them free if you bring them into one of our offices.

www.tcdc.govt.nz/kerbside

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SAVE THE DRAIN FOR RAIN

Most people are unaware that the stormwater grates on the street outside their house are for rainwater only.

Anything else that goes down these drains goes directly into our waterways – our streams, ponds, estuaries and harbours – and can pollute the places we love to go swimming, boating and fishing.

Here’s how you can help prevent stormwater pollution Many of our everyday activities can pollute stormwater, such as washing the car or washing paint brushes. Here are some things we can all do to help keep our stormwater clean: • W ash your car, boat or bike at a proper facility connected to the sewerage system. If you need to wash your car at home, wash it on the grass as far away from the drain or roadside as possible. The pollutants will soak into the grass rather than washing directly into the drain/waterway. • W ash your water-based paintbrush at an inside sink or on the lawn or garden. Dispose of unwanted paint or oil responsibly.

• E mpty swimming/spa pools into the council sewerage system. • C lean up any chemical/oil spills by soaking up the spill and discarding at an approved transfer station. Don’t just wash it down the stormwater drain. Drop off your old waste oils and unwanted batteries at the transfer station too. • D on’t hose housewashing, concrete cleaning or any other chemicals down the drain. • A t work: Follow best work practices for managing any run-off. • I n rural areas: Install proper holding ponds for animal wastes and fence off streams from cattle. • Put your litter in the bin.

REMEMBER: Stormwater drains to the sea. Help keep our beaches and waterways from becoming dirty and degraded. Don’t allow unwanted products, paints, oils, chemicals, animal waste, car/boat wash scum, swimming/spa pool water, campervan wastewater, cleaning products, litter, grass clippings, leaf litter, smoke butts, cement slurry, industrial waste, food grease, water blasting runoff, sediments, construction materials, dairy products, effluents or anything else you wouldn’t want to swim in or have your children play in down the stormwater drain.

Improvements to stormwater discharge Our Council maintains a 221 km network of stormwater pipelines across our district. As part of our annual renewal and replacement programme of these pipes, we are investigating ways to improve the quality of the discharge to our waterways. For example, we are reviewing the discharge into the Whangamata Harbour on Port Road.

REPORT ANY POLLUTION OF STORMWATER TO TCDC: 07 868 0200

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Take care of our place We try to look after our natural environment the best we can, and we need you to help us while you’re visiting our special place. Here’s what you can do to help.

OTHER WALKS TO TRY

RUBBISH/RECYCLING ~ Rubbish and recycling collection dates www.tcdc.govt.nz/rubbish ~ Sites to drop off unwanted waste www.tcdc.govt.nz/rts or www.tcdc.govt.nz/compactors

FREEDOM CAMPING? ~ For camping and dump station sites www.tcdc.govt.nz/freedomcamping and www.tcdc.govt.nz/camping

VISITING CATHEDRAL COVE OR HOT WATER BEACH? ~ For best places to park and parking costs www.tcdc.govt.nz/parkingchanges

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~ Check out www.tcdc.govt.nz/localwalks ~ Sadly we have kauri dieback in the Coromandel. You can help stop the spread www.tcdc.govt.nz/kauri ~ And if eating and drinking is more your thing: food trail guide www.tcdc.govt.nz/foodtrail

BRINGING YOUR DOG? ~ Your dog needs to be registered to a Council. ~ For places to walk, summer and public holidays restrictions www.tcdc.govt.nz/dogs

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Profile for Thames-Coromandel District Council

Our Coromandel Magazine 2018-19  

Our Coromandel is the annual magazine from Thames-Coromandel District Council. Get the inside track on New Zealand's beautiful Coromandel Pe...

Our Coromandel Magazine 2018-19  

Our Coromandel is the annual magazine from Thames-Coromandel District Council. Get the inside track on New Zealand's beautiful Coromandel Pe...

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