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Auckland Central 19/143 Quay Street

Marina haven - Deceased Estate

We are sailing…..calling all entertainers! Sell the boat! A picture paints a thousand words. Undeniably fantastic. Unbelievably spacious. One of the cities most spectacular positions to live.

Located on the second floor of the well-known Shed 24 at Princes Wharf, just opposite The Hilton Hotel, so is your tandem car park and storage, life couldn’t be easier. Enter through your own private vestibule into a marine haven. Imagine yourself living here. Surrounded by water to the east and to the west. You are right at the front of the best ‘landboat’ in Auckland. The harbour bridge view is spectacular! And that’s just the start. bayleys.co.nz/1672257

For Sale By Negotiation Phone for viewing times Suzie Paine 021 976 008 suzie.paine@bayleys.co.nz BAYLEYS REAL ESTATE LTD, PONSONBY, LICENCED UNDER THE REA ACT 2008 3 2 2.5 2



On the edge of the Waitematā Harbour overlooking Mechanics Bay, a beacon of luxury living is emerging. You may not yet have heard the name Elysian, but it is soon to be on everyone’s lips as Auckland’s newest and most opulent apartment building.

On 20th April at 25 Balfour Road in Parnell, construction will begin on this masterpiece, which features only 16 apartments including two penthouses. Size over quantity ensures luxury and exclusivity for a building that promises to elevate apartment living to previously unseen heights.

Designed in part by two Ponsonby-based businesses, Jerome Buckwell of Crosson Architects and interior designer Sarah Foote, these penthouses transcend the typical.

"Our goal with Elysian is to create spaces that are experienced," Buckwell shares. The meticulous design, from the panoramic harbour views to the custom finishes, showcases their mission to establish new luxury living standards in New Zealand.

A standout feature of these residences is their expansive northfacing outlook, offering residents a canvas of the harbour that transitions beautifully from day to night. Buckwell emphasises, "Integrating the beauty of our surroundings into the penthouse design is crucial. We intend to make Auckland's natural splendour a constant in our residents' lives."

Sarah Foote's interior design brings timeless elegance and modern luxury together. "True luxury lies in the details," Foote remarks, pointing to the penthouses' bespoke cabinetry,

Gaggenau appliances and luxurious materials like natural stone and marble that create an unparalleled sense of sophistication.

Elysian’s commitment extends beyond design, to preserving Auckland's heritage, illustrated by the careful relocation of a historic villa to Matakana, rather than its demolition. "This decision is reflective of our broader vision for Elysian," Buckwell notes, "marrying the old with the new in a development that honours its roots while embracing the future."

As the construction date nears, excitement builds not just among potential residents but within the wider Auckland community. Foote adds, "Elysian is set to redefine what's expected of luxury apartment living in New Zealand. These penthouses, especially, offer an unparalleled opportunity for indulgence."

Elysian looks to stand as a testament to exquisite design, meticulous craftsmanship, and a luxury lifestyle that's second to none. With the penthouses promising breathtaking views and unmatched elegance, Elysian is a legacy for the discerning few. For those in search of the ultimate in luxury, the doors to Elysian are open.


























Editor/Publisher: MARTIN LEACH M: 021 771 147 martinleach@xtra.co.nz or martin@ponsonbynews.co.nz

Distribution Manager: JAY PLATT M: 021 771 146 jayplatt@xtra.co.nz or jay@ponsonbynews.co.nz

Advertising Sales: JO BARRETT

M: 021 324 510 joannebarrett@xtra.co.nz

Advertising Sales/Ad Designer: MELISSA PAYNTER

M: 027 938 4111 melissapaynter@me.com

Operations Manager: GWYNNE DAVENPORT

M: 021 150 4095 gwynne@ponsonbynews.co.nz

Fashion & Beauty Editor: HELENE RAVLICH

M: 021 767 133 helene@mshelene.com

Contributing Music Editor: FINN MCLENNAN-ELLIOTT

M: 021 134 4101 finn.huia@gmail.com

Graphic Designer: ARNA MARTIN

M: 021 354 984 arna@cocodesign.co.nz

PONSONBY NEWS is published monthly, excluding January by: ALCHEMY MEDIA LIMITED, P.O. BOX 47-282 Ponsonby, Auckland 1144, T: 09 378 8553, www.ponsonbynews.co.nz

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Annual Subscriptions: Within New Zealand $49. By cheque or credit card in NZ$. Please note: we do not hold back issues of Ponsonby News. Our archive is all online as pdfs. Please visit www.ponsonbynews.co.nz

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P28 - Melissa Fergusson says, “with apartment living I love the lock up and leave and no maintenance aspect best."
LOVING, LIVING & SELLING GREATER PONSONBY BLAIR HADDOW Blair Haddow 021 544 555 blair.haddow@bayleys.co.nz bayleys.co.nz/blair-haddow BAYLEYS REAL ESTATE LIMITED, PONSONBY, LICENSED UNDER THE REA ACT 2008 Westmere 194 Garnet Road SOLD Ponsonby 10 John Street SOLD Ponsonby 2 Wanganui Avenue SOLD Ponsonby 39 Ardmore Road SOLD ALTOGETHER BETTER Residential / Commercial / Rural / Property Services SOLD SOLD SOLD SOLD


I feel that 'Rewards for doing what WE wanted Awards' would be a more appropriate description.

I understand David Batten and Brandon Wilcox got Good Citizens' Awards after receiving a Waitematā Local Board ‘grant' (read ‘gift') for $10,000.

This $10,000 was to cover their costs for a full design of an alternative to the hideous Great North Road Cycleway ‘improvement' designs from Auckland Transport ‘experts' (now shelved, thank goodness).

Where was the due diligence and the research that confirmed that the design Batten and Wilcox submitted was specific (ie, minutely detailed), measurable (ie, with visible benefits for ALL), achievable (ie, cost affordable), relevant (given the changing political environment), timely (years too late), feasible (clearly it was not), and more affordable (it had to be less expensive than the $30,000,000 odd million AT were proposing)?

They do not appear to have achieved any of these criteria, as their submitted design was totally unviable.

These two newly encouraged supporters of the Waitematā Local Board and Auckland Transport then immediately followed Genevieve Sage’s lead and flipped through 180 degrees and moved from objecting to AT’s equally ridiculous and hideously expensive design, to publicly and privately supporting it.

I attended the AT Board meeting and watched in disbelief while Batten and Wilcox abandoned all decency and left Mike Lee, Councillor (and AT Board member at the time) dangling high and dry after he had made every possible effort to support them.

They did this by changing to supporting the AT design when challenged by the AT Board at that meeting.

They supported the original AT design, now shelved as it should have been all those months ago (but after ‘earning' $10,000).

I guess $10,000 in the pocket was all that Genevieve Sage and her supporting City Vision troupe needed to pass over in order to encourage 'vociferous and principled objectors' to move into the 'committed supporters' camp.

Thankfully, most of the residents and ratepayers of Waitematā are not so easily manipulated.

The key question that WLB should answer is: How does this performance make Batten and Wilcox ‘Good Citizens’?

It most certainly would not be recognised or rewarded in any decent business or organisation – so why would WLB make such an obviously self-serving award at a cost of some $10,000 and deny others who did deserve recognition and who do not expect remuneration?

Roger Hawkins, Herne Bay


Thanks for a good summary of AT's mess. I totally agreed with everything Gael Baldock wrote in the latest Ponsonby News. But I was disappointed that she didn’t mention the ridiculously SMALL car park for dog walkers and others at Meola Reef, which is totally inadequate as it is – and many people park on the road which is dangerous enough now but will be much worse when narrowed. Will parking still be allowed?

Diana Ferguson, Herne Bay


I attended an event called Leap Year Speakeasy 2024 at Garnet Station on 29 February. Mayor Wayne Brown attended as well as many who wanted to stand up and talk with regards to concerns with Auckland Transport, Eke Panuku and the removal of trees from out of volcanic cones. It was the first time I had met the Mayor. During one person’s articulate speech on the removal of trees, I was disgusted with the Mayor talking to the person beside him with comments of, “Is he going to go on all night?” or “Who cares about the #### trees.” When another stood up to put her point of a four year battle to save trees in her area and the lack of care of Auckland Council, again the Mayor carried on talking and muttering rude comments.

He did , however, hug her and thank her for the work she has done over the last four years. One ex Local Board member for North Shore spoke and the Mayor decided he had more than enough and only came “for the party.”

He announced his intention to leave before others had the opportunity to talk and the evening was drawn to a close early. I was disgusted with what I heard and saw of the Mayor. The language used I could have excused due to his consumption of too much alcohol.

I could not, however, excuse his rudeness, nor the insults thrown about him “working with idiots” who do not support him. An appalling example from a Mayor of this country’s biggest city. No wonder nothing has been achieved in the last 15 months and I sincerely hope he will be a one-term Mayor, with the attitude I witnessed that night.

Any talk of answers of concerns raised was met with babble of it’s everyone else’s fault except his own and went on to blame governments from the past. Most definitely not a man to lead our biggest city. He admitted he only cares about what he campaigned on but as we watch our rates squandered, it might pay for Mr Brown to remember the old saying, "look after the cents and the dollars look after themselves" — sadly other people’s money is not spent very wisely.

The positive news was upon asking the Mayor why were Auckland Transport funding Bike Auckland, he said, “We are giving no more funding to Bike Auckland.” We shall see.

I would like to thank the hosts and organisers of ‘Occupy Garnet Road’ for putting on the event and especially thank Gael Baldock for her work in recording the evening and attempting to bring the Mayor into some sort of order before his early departure. It was a pleasure meeting Gael who has a wealth of knowledge on local politics. She really is a breath of fresh air.

Tracy Ryan, Herne Bay

PS: LOVE the Ponsonby News, thank you to all staff!


Why? I hope it’s not false economy and they end up putting them back.

A friend walking his dog told me of a local park that has a stack of dog poo dumped in plastic bags in a pile where the bin used to be.


CONTINUED ON PAGE 10 Opinions expressed in Ponsonby News are not always the opinion of Alchemy Media Limited & Ponsonby News.

There are 20 letters to the editor this month and they cover seven and a half pages with issues like the Good Citizens’ Awards, Auckland Transport, Cycleways, the 10 year plan, Meola Road, The WLB and others.

Please keep them coming as we enjoy reading about the issues of the day. We want to know how people are feeling.

It was nice to see Kourtney Kardashian and drummer Travis Barker of Blink-182 having a plant-based burger at Wise Boys in Grey Lynn. They ate the signature burger - the Wise Boy with a side of onion rings. The locals were so impressed and excited to see international A-listers in our ‘hood. It was nice of the pair to give a shout out on social media about their meal.

This month, we asked eight of our readers to tell us their experiences of living in apartments.

Twenty years ago these were harder to sell with many Kiwis wanting their dream of a family house on a quarter-acre section. But now virtually it seems like every corner has apartments on them or has them planned as our city grows.

Our eight interviews include a marketing director, a retailer, the Mayor, a real estate agent, a maximalist and a semi retired couple.

Paris Butter's Chef Nick Honeyman has recently been awarded his first Michelin Star for restaurant Le Petit Léon. Situated in the heart of Saint-Léon-sur-Vézère in the South of France, Le Petit Léon is one of 52 eateries in France that has been awarded a prestigious Michelin star this year, the first for Honeyman and his team.

Jay Platt and Martin Leach

Boujee night of Boogie coming to Auckland – 16 May. Get set to groove the night away to disco tunes performed by a full symphony orchestra, plus enjoy fabulous food and cocktails at Auckland Philharmonia’s newest event – Boogie Wonderland: Disco Ball on 16 May in the Auckland Town Hall.

Competition to mark National Farmers Markets Week…Tricia Reade was delighted to learn that she was the lucky winner of the Ponsonby News competition to mark National Farmers Markets Week. On a Sunday last month, Tricia and her daughter, Kirsten Morrell, visited Grey Lynn Farmers Market to collect her prize of $100 market vouchers and to spend some of her winnings. (MARTIN LEACH)  PN

Photography: Connor Crawford



David Fisher, of the NZ Herald, wrote an excellent exposé of the quiet but relentless growth in surveillance camera tracking, saying, “The NZ Police have never invested in a network of cameras in this country,” begging the question, “Who has?”

Whose cameras are photographing us on every stretch of road we traverse and, more importantly, who gave them permission to grossly intrude in this way on our privacy in the public space? Any suggestion that this is entirely for our safety is naive.

This is of particular interest to me as I raised similar concerns in the Ponsonby News June and July 2023 letters to the editor on the subject. It amazes me that most people haven’t been curious enough to question the seeing-eye following their movement each time they leave the house and some seem not to notice or care at all.

In the city, especially at junctions, it is now common to find cameras that are specifically designed for facial recognition.

So, it’s clear that the afforestation of our streets with cameras is not only restricted to the purpose of traffic management but also to identify and track the people who transit these locations, both by car and on foot. These functions extend to much wider possibilities of controlling movement as well as collecting revenue.

Which brings me to a project that, according to their council website, Hamilton is show-casing. Councils may now have enough camera-infrastructure in place to take their ‘war' on your private motor vehicle to the next level of effectively ring-fencing the range you’ll be able to travel from your home without, say, losing carbon credits or having your bank account docked in real time. That is if you choose to take your car rather than walk or use public transport. It’s called, 'The 20-minute City' or zone. The 20 minutes refers to walking distance, not driving distance. Including electric vehicles, because you are, 'saving the planet’ – yeah, right?

In the Herald article, Clive Matthew-Wilson, editor of the car review website 'Dog & Lemon', said, “Most motorists are completely unaware that their movements may be monitored in this way.”

He said surveillance would get worse, and predicted, “Compulsory transmitters in your car that can track your every movement and can switch your car off anytime, anywhere, without you being able to do anything about it." I think that’s called 5G connectivity.

Interestingly, central Auckland was designed with 15 to 20 minutes walking distances between Queen Street, Karangahape Road, Ponsonby Road, Grey Lynn, West Lynn and Jervois Road already. So, people have always been able to walk. What if soon the choice of taking the car comes with a penalty?

Grant Mountjoy



When Lambs Pharmacy was established in 1839, Karangahape Road was serviced by horse and cart, then came trams, then trolley buses, then regular buses all bringing customers and trade.

My family has owned Lambs Pharmacy for 30 years. It is also a postal centre and an Ayurvedic natural health clinic.

Each of the changes to K' Road have impacted our loyal customers: cycleway construction; removing parking, adding a second bus stop to the block, and only leaving a loading zone; the cycleway making loading access dangerous between moving cycles and a lack of trolley access across the garden; now only four hours per day loading zone access, without bus lanes 11am and 3pm.

The imposed restrictions do not coincide with the real traffic flow or the Mayor’s rush hour times – 7am to 9am (northern side) and 4.30pm to 6.30pm (southern side).

NZ Post pickup was 6pm, but after parking removal, it became 4.30pm, with bus lane restrictions it is now 2.30pm.

Inconveniently, my customers have effectively lost half a day to prepare legal documents and other courier services. Auckland Transport is interfering with the ‘King's Mail', impacting people’s lives and livelihoods, whilst sitting in their ivory towers making these decisions on a whim without practical knowledge. A stopping exception for NZ Post would allow it to go back to the end of the day for those legal practices.

There is one disabled car park across the busy street but AT’s designs and decisions lack common sense or compassion for those who are ill or disabled. Pharmacy patients, who are often less mobile, can no longer stop to quickly pick up prescriptions.

Clinic patients used to be able to park close by or be dropped off outside the pharmacy. Restricted stopping hours and the dangerous obstacle course from the road (mount a kerb, cross a garden, mount another kerb, cross the cycleway with bikes and scooters whizzing in both directions) before they get to the safety of the pharmacy, means many have chosen to go elsewhere.

K' Road has already lost 30-year businesses including O’Malley’s Menswear after the cycleway inception and the Army Surplus at the end of February.

We were told that restricting the road to one lane would mean that heavy vehicles would no longer travel along K' Road. We weren’t told that nearly empty buses would outnumber the rest of the vehicles. Some of these buses were meant to return to their old route down Pitt Street. Hopefully, they will do so once the CRL opens but we can’t continue like this for two years.

Suresh and Anish Rama, Lambs Pharmacy, K' Road



To the 20 people who nominated me for a Waitematā Local Board ‘Good Citizen Award’ (apparently including Deputy Mayor Simpson). These nominations were initiated three years ago by my biggest supporter, Martin Leach, before I became a regular contributor to the Ponsonby News. You are amazing, Martin. Also to the six people who wrote letters to the editor disappointed that I was not awarded it, and all the members of the community who stop me in the ‘hood’ to compliment me on my articles explaining what is actually going on in our city.

I am humbled by this overwhelming support of the work that I do for my community.

My parents taught me many great things that I am grateful for. But they believed it was rude to talk about religion or politics, which I don’t agree with. The former is really about spirituality and compassion, while local body politics affect us in our day to day lives. I call it ‘the mud on the doorstep’. I love having robust conversations with people with different views as long as it is cordial and civil.

The community also showed support previously when they bought me an iPad to do my advocacy work/calling. I love my iPad and the community.

Apart from hard core politics, I love mixing it up with edgy things that are a different level of political statement. I was pleasantly reminded of the ‘guerrilla art’ installation that a group of artists did in 2009. We used an abandoned construction site on Vinegar Hill (now Countdown Williamson Avenue) as a ‘set’ to stage a ‘Pool Party’. A group of women acted out synchronised swimming on the concrete of one of the levels of a carpark and the lower level, filled with rainwater, became the ‘pool’ for my inflatable crocodile pool lilo and kayaking. When asked the purpose behind it, I responded “does there need to be one?” but that was lost on the reporter who made up a reason. I have spoken with one of the fellow organisers about doing another event and will keep you posted.


It was with shock that her family, her friends and her former work associates learned of Philippa’s sudden death on 8 December 2023.

Philippa Tait (nee Russell) was born in Christchurch on 17 March 1944. On leaving school she trained as a nurse and later as a journalist. Her journalistic and public relations career included work with the Auckland Star, the Rotorua Daily Post, Eagle Marketing Services and the Auckland Tourist

Times. Later, she wrote community stories for Ponsonby News and contributed to the same magazine a column describing the monthly meetings of Ponsonby U3A.

Described by her friends as a deep thinker, Philippa had a wealth of experiences to draw on. As well as raising her family and being a helpmate to her rheumatologist husband Barrie, she was one of four panellists for Beauty and the Beast, a show presented by Selwyn Toogood in the 1980s. This was a kind of 'agony aunt 'chat show and with her quick wit and innate insight into human nature, she was in her element.

As part of her varied background, she was a maker of stylish Florentines that sold in Merivale’s exclusive cake shop. In 1990s she left the kitchen to become Public Relations Officer for the Canterbury Medical Research Foundation. Later, Philippa was part of the Mental Health Review Tribunal and on the Professional Conduct Committees for the Dental Council of New Zealand and the Nursing Council of New Zealand respectively.

Throughout much of her career, Philippa was battling serious health issues. Her customary courage led her to set aside the pain and disruption to write a chapter in the book, 'Beating Our Breasts' edited by Margaret Clark, Cape Catley, 2000 where 20 New Zealand women told their breast cancer stories.

When Philippa and her family relocated to Auckland, she joined Ponsonby U3A when meetings were held in the Leys Institute. Willing to give anything a go, she quickly became a valued member, always ready to contribute in whatever way needed.

She was a much-loved President of the society and a popular member of special interest groups like the Writing Group where she combined her intelligence and well-honed writing skills with her wicked sense of humour and perception. A selfdescribed news junkie, she was widely read and devoured both fiction and nonfiction.

Philippa was a gifted raconteur. Along with her quick and clever mind, she had a phenomenal memory, and her riveting stories were delivered with detail, imagery and humour.

As well as having a sharp intellect, Philippa was wise, kind, loyal, empathetic and trustworthy. She had a way of making one feel that they were at the centre of her universe and therefore they could tell her anything. Not surprisingly, she became an important mentor for many people. Perhaps the greatest attribute that contributed to Philippa’s humanity was her ability to listen and to put herself in the shoes of others.

She is missed.

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 11
LETTERS CONTINUED CONTINUED ON PAGE 12 Opinions expressed in Ponsonby News are not always the opinion of Alchemy Media Limited & Ponsonby News.



My recent interactions with Auckland Transport (AT), have made me wonder whether or not this organisation is totally corrupt from within.

Back in April of last year (2023), my car broke down at the top of Tuarangi Road, Grey Lynn due to the engine over heating and leaking oil. As I was coming up to the top of Tuarangi Road, the car stopped in the middle of road and would not start again. Luckily, there were two members of the public passing by who kindly stopped to assist me and push the car to the side of the road.

Unfortunately, the only parking space was on the right hand side of the road, so I had to park the car facing the wrong way. I left a note on the front dashboard stating I had broken down and would be back next morning with a tow truck to pick up the car. Next morning, I returned to find the car had been ticketed by AT and been fined $40. When the fine arrived in the mail, the warden had only taken a picture of the back of the car and not the front.

Normal practice is they take a picture of the front of the car with the infringement on windscreen, and if they had taken photos of the front, they would have seen the note saying I had broken down. So, I requested a court hearing, which was set down for November last year – the hearing was put off a couple times until finally the matter was heard on 1 March 2024.

To cut a long story short, the outcome of this case was that AT seemed dishonest about this matter. The parking warden denied ever seeing a note on the front dash of the car when questioned in court. If he had taken a photo of the front of the car, as is their common practice, he would have seen the note saying the car had broken down. He conveniently did not do this in my opinion, so he could claim he was justified in giving the infringement.

The final outcome of this was that a $40 fine was turned into a $300 fine. This makes me question whether this was legal or not. How can this organisation justify turning a $40 fine, which should never have been issued due to the circumstances, into a $300 dollar fine? I don’t see any justification for this.

To me this just shows how corrupt Auckland Transport really is and how they don’t care about the community or the people in the community but only care about themselves and making money. To this end, I have no doubt that they appear corrupt, not just their Parking Services department but the whole organisation. I would be interested if anyone else has had similar experiences with AT as I have had.

The current Mayor and councillors recently voted (from my understanding) to disband Auckland Transport and put it back in the hands of the people of Auckland like it used to be back in the days of the ARA and before the Super City.

My question, therefore, to the Mayor is: if this is the case, why has this not been done and why is it taking so long to disband this totally corrupt organisation? I would also ask the councillors the same question and also ask why they are not pushing for this to be done, as they are the ones who voted to disband Auckland Transport.

DEAR OLGA, The footpaths in Ponsonby and the CBD are uneven and dangerous...

You are correct, the footpaths in Ponsonby are uneven and dangerous. My left knee has a scar in evidence of that. But they are not the only ones. I was walking into the city from Ponsonby to visit friends, when I tripped over in Victoria Street East at the corner of Queen Street.

Three kind people helped me to my feet. I was so shaken that I didn’t think to take a photo of what caused me to fall. My right knee has a large gash as you can see. It’s very sore and I know it is going to have a matching scar to the other knee.

Why did Auckland Transport spend their budget on making a mess of Three Lamps and replacing the footpaths down Williamson Avenue, where it only had some minor cracks, instead of making repairs where they are needed in the city?

Call me 'Multiple Tripper'


In the Auckland Council Long Term Plan currently out for consultation, there are a number of proposals relating to the disposal of significant public assets (or, more accurately ,what little now remains of them).

One such option involves the possible demolition of North Harbour Stadium and the sale of the land. This is being advanced by Tataki Auckland Unlimited (the council CCO which has ‘managed’ the stadium since 2014 and who also manages Western Springs).

In this consultation, all of Auckland is asked to give their view on North Harbour, including the good people served so well by the Ponsonby News. You have exactly the same say as locals do. For the sake of our region we need people making informed choices.

In the documentation, however, people filling in the feedback form are largely guided by the self-serving commentary of the proponents of this ‘redevelopment’ and by a series of loaded statements in the options. That hardly amounts to rigorous contestability when it comes to the future of a $450 million public asset.

If adopted, this would mean the entire northern part of Auckland will be without a stadium capable of hosting any major sporting, cultural or music event as occurred regularly under previous management. And this for the fastest-growing sporting and development region in Auckland with a population fast approaching 500,000.

In the case of North Harbour, most people will be unaware that from 1997-2014 the stadium was managed by the North Harbour Stadium Trust.

That Trust was very successful in attracting a wide variety of content to the stadium including numerous All Black and Kiwi rugby league tests, NRL games, Super Rugby games, FIFA matches, an A-League soccer franchise and a variety of concerts and cultural events. The Trust also built up a healthy reserve fund to ensure the ongoing maintenance and capital replacement.


Around 2014, however, that Trust decided the transfer of the stadium into the new ‘Super City’ CCO would be in the best interests of the stadium going forward.

The Trust was initially circumspect but was eventually persuaded by assurances that Council resources and management expertise would ensure the ongoing attraction of events to the stadium both on the field and in the stadium’s extensive lounge facilities.

Since that time, however, the original trustees along with many in the North Harbour community have watched in dismay as TAU has not only failed to attract anything like the content that characterised the performance of the previous Trust but have severely compromised the use of the ground with some disastrous operational decisions.

The most graphic example of these failures was the $2.5 million spent in 2019 demolishing a large section of the western half of the ground to accommodate a baseball franchise that subsequently went bust owing money. In so doing, TAU effectively removed the ability of North Harbour Stadium to attract major sporting events.

Remarkably, no subsequent effort has been made by TAU to reinstate the western half of the ground despite there being a relatively straightforward fix. That means half the stadium now looks like an ordinary suburban ground while the other side retains the look and facilities of a modern stadium, the equal of any in NZ in fact. If it wasn’t so sad, the incongruity of the current configuration would be comical.

Instead of addressing these glaring shortcomings for which they alone have been responsible, Tataki Auckland Unlimited is now promoting the demolition of Auckland’s newest stadium, ironically enough one they previously trumpeted as,“the country’s finest mid-size community stadium.”

This is the same CCO, it should be noted, who only a few years back also proposed demolishing a large part of Mt Smart Stadium in order to turn it into a speedway track. And in the case of Western Springs, by just allowing it to progressively run down.

That means the entity running Auckland’s stadiums actually has a penchant for demolition and degradation when it comes to the ‘management’ of those stadiums!

There are other options in this consultation – to keep the stadium as is and to change the operational management. That might well be a better place to start for North Harbour and for Western Springs.

Auckland Councillor


How is this an improvement to Three Lamps? You promised to stop this sort of thing. Let’s see some action.

Frustrated Ratepayer


On 14 March, Waitematā Local Board held a public meeting, where feedback could be offered on Auckland Council’s Long Term Plan, which is the budget for the next 10 years.

Only members of the community who had presented to council on matters previously, had been sent an email inviting them to present at this meeting. So, why is a meeting on public spending for the next 10 years by invitation only? How was the general public to know this event was on? They didn’t, and perhaps there was no intention to let them know.

Where’s the democracy in this?

One of the presenters duly noted that there were no figures in the budget to allow us to compare past spending to the projected spending. This is almost laughable! Without figures, how can it be a budget? It isn’t.

When we asked if the meeting would be recorded for the public to view on social media, we were informed that, in this instance, it wouldn’t be.

A comment from one of those who presented at the meeting described the experience as like “presenting to a wall,” as no interaction with the elected WLB members present was intended to be a part of this meeting.

Councillor Mike Lee attended and also explained his view on how selling assets to create a 'future fund' would result in that fund becoming nothing but a slush fund that would be frittered away by an over-spending council.

So, a budget that isn’t a budget, and presentations heard only by the few in the room. Will it change a thing? That’s ‘democracy' down at the Town Hall. A big thumbs down!

Rock The Vote NZ www.rockthevotenz.com


Someone on the Point Chevalier Community page shared this photo of the construction works on Meola Road.

This is how tight it is going to be for two buses to pass each other on the new narrow road. The Ponsonby News article that was shared on the community page said there were 352 times that buses could stop. How am I going to get home from work? You promised to stop Auckland Transport so I voted for you.

I know the kerbs are already built but can you please instruct them to put the bus stops back how they were before when the buses pulled over to stop?

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 13
LETTERS CONTINUED CONTINUED ON PAGE 14 Opinions expressed in Ponsonby News are not always the opinion of Alchemy Media Limited & Ponsonby News.


I'm a musician, and recently I wrote a song about a roughsleeper named Ari. I heard about her via a friend who's a chaplain. Another friend, who was moved by my song, urged me to share it.

What struck her was the juxtaposition – which we've come to take for granted – between the opulence of those of us who are comfortably off compared to the poverty of those at the other end of our social spectrum. If we stop taking this divide for granted we can change it.

Her name is Ari, she sleeps outside the gallery in the rain

All the pretty pictures snug inside can't wash away her pain

If Picasso and Van Gogh could step outside that door

They would paint her picture and hang it on the wall

They'd call it Ari In The Rain

Ari walks the streets all day, and no-one says hello

Even if you try she'll turn away like she doesn't want to know

If Chekhov wrote her story she would be the heroine

But she's not telling anyone the trouble she's been in

Her name is Ari and she sleeps outside the gallery in the park

None of us quite knows the fear she feels, especially after dark

Picasso and Van Gogh, they did their best to please

But beauty isn't quite enough for wounds as deep as these

If you see Ari just smile, and maybe say her name

She won't let you come too close, but at least she'll know you came

All the pretty pictures and fine stories that we knew Point in the direction of the one thing we could do Do it for Ari In The Rain.

("True art arises from love, and points toward love." - ML)


Having attended the latest Waitematā Local Board meeting, I had the displeasure of seeing the Chair, Genevieve Sage, voting against the very team and mandate that she as a councillor was voted in on, namely Communities & Residents. (C&R)

The vote to yet waste more money to make Ponsonby Road ‘safer’ is now going ahead thanks to Gen Sage’s casting vote as Chair. By the way, with no empirical data to support that the proposed expenditure will actually achieve any additional safety. Ponsonby Road is already a 40km/hr zone.

Here’s an idea, if you want to make Ponsonby road safer, how about banning electric scooters and bicycles from the footpaths?

Included in this motion that the Chair endorsed with her casting vote, were the ‘Parnell and Newmarket Town Centre Safety projects’ and ‘any projects or programmes for Auckland Transport to review that are not supported by the local community’. Yes you’ve read that right: not supported by the local community.

So not only are AT and City Vision supporting overpriced Grey Lynn cycling projects that nobody asked for, but they are ignoring the democratic process and the Local Government Act that demands consultation. Furthermore, all this nonsense is going on during a cost of living crisis that we the ratepayers are expected to pay for.

We need to get rid of these duplicitous public officials who are running on their own ‘hidden agenda’ pontificating at any given moment with all their glib rhetoric.

My only question to the Waitematā Local Board is when is the next local board election?

We need to get rid of these people and ensure that these local board members are held to the mandate they are voted in on.

Shame on you Gen Sage.

Pete Mars, Concerned Ratepayers, Herne Bay


Auckland Transport announcing a reduction of only 30% to the number of raised pedestrian crossings being built after the Mayor’s recent public criticism says to the public: “We were always right, but we will ‘start' reducing these idiot raised pedestrian crossings only because we have been forced to!"

Dean, as a practising CEO, you know very well that you have the executive authority and the ability to say to all those internal AT zealots ‘STOP', (or is it ‘SOTP'?) and your staff will immediately stop wasting our money and ruining our communities.

To do anything other than this, Dean, is demonstrating how bureaucratically obtuse you and your AT team are choosing to be, and that option is simply unacceptable to the ratepayers.

The only thing stopping you and your team from stopping these unpopular 'speed calming measures', is your personal inclination to act – as indeed the public demand of you.

Dean, and Andrew, please immediately tell your staff to ‘STOP' all work on raising pedestrian crossings citywide. (Indeed, starting to take them out would be the much-preferred option for your ratepayers.)

Dean, could you also please instruct Andrew Allen and his team to restore Ponsonby Road to two lanes in each direction at Three Lamps intersection with Pompallier Terrace?

I met with Andrew and his cohort on site at Three Lamps to show them all the problems that their obviously flawed design would cause, well before construction commenced.

It was immediately apparent that the AT executive, had no intention of stopping this idiot project and had turned up to both 'tick the consultation box' and explain that nothing would change – as opposed to turning up to listen and learn, as they should have.

They were fixed in their views that they were right and nothing would change. I had the OIA-sourced statistics that proved that there had been zero deaths and just a couple of minor incidents at those pedestrian crossings during the last 10 years.

Yet AT’s argument to proceed was (as always) ‘safety’, but clearly the statistics told a completely different story – there were no safety issues, NONE.

(If there are no dsi’s on these pedestrian crossings in the next 10 years, then AT will not have achieved anything except wasting $1,500,000 of ratepayers’ hard-earned dollars.)


Deliberately taking one lane out of the perfectly functioning left turn into Pompallier Terrace, as they well know it, is another case of AT deliberately creating chaos and congestion for absolutely no valid reason.

One lane served Pompallier Terrace and traffic proceeding west to the Harbour Bridge, Herne Bay, Westmere and beyond – while the right lane offered easy access east to College Hill and the CBD. An obvious question for AT to answer is: Why change it? It is working perfectly and always has.

All the locals I’ve discussed this with absolutely hate the deliberate destruction of our local community and our roads and the hideous waste of our money by an obtuse AT management and staff. The re-designed ‘solution' is anything but, indeed it creates problems rather than fixes them.

Auckland Transport – we want our Ponsonby Road returned to its original form, as it has happily been for the last 50 or so years, please. Now!



Dear fellow ratepayers, Recently, I read Gael Baldock's article in the March edition of the Ponsonby News and there was one paragraph that left me both astonished and aghast.

It was the paragraph that began with the sentence, "The experiment to move Kiwi's out of cars onto bikes has failed" and went on to quote an NZ Herald article with Auckland Transport's CEO Dean Kimpton where he states that cycling was supposed to rise to 17% of all trips but instead has remained at just 1%!

Auckland Transport and Auckland Council have literally spent millions and millions of ratepayers' and taxpayers’ hardearned money on cycle lanes for nothing!

This is where Auckland Transport's ideology has collided with reality. How can Auckland Transport and Auckland Council continue to justify this enormous waste of money?

And now we will be asked to pay huge increases in our rates during a cost of living crisis where so many people are really struggling.

Auckland Transport needs to stop this nonsense – or is there another agenda going on here?

Michael Avenell


Last October, the Waitematā Local Board resolved to proceed with the restoration and upgrading of the Leys Institute Library and Gymnasium. 2024 was supposed to be the year for obtaining all the necessary consents and getting the detailed plans ready, with a view to work starting in 2025.

However, we were dismayed by Mayor Wayne Brown’s public statements last November that there should not be any more seismic strengthening of council buildings. We sought assurances from council staff and the Waitematā Local Board before Christmas and were told that work was ongoing on the Leys.

Checking with council staff this month, we find that there has been no progress at all. No architect has been engaged and no consents have been sought. We are extremely concerned that the Leys Institute restoration has been halted.

It’s now over four years since the buildings were closed and they are sadly deteriorating as we watch.

Remuera Library, with a lower council heritage listing than the Leys Institute, will soon be closed for seismic strengthening.

What about the Leys? Is Auckland Council shaping up to be guilty of demolition by neglect?

We have encouraged all Friends of Leys Institute members to advocate for the Leys in the Long Term Plan consultation process, which closed on 28 March.

You can show your concern by emailing Mayor Wayne Brown at mayor.wayne.brown@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz Councillor Mike Lee at Mike.Lee@aucklandcouncil.govt. nz and Local Board chairperson Genevieve Sage at Genevieve.Sage@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

You can join the 232 members of Friends of Leys Institute by emailing helen@geary.nz

Helen Geary, Friends of Leys Institute Co-ordinator M: 021 208 7490


PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 15
LETTERS CONTINUED Opinions expressed in Ponsonby News are not always the opinion of Alchemy Media Limited & Ponsonby News.
Photography: Connor Crawford



I am a working artist and photographer with a colourful and rhythmic perspective. I enjoy shooting the front covers of Ponsonby News.


For the last 53 years I’ve been a freelance entertainment journalist and author. I’ve lived in the Grey Lynn area for over three decades; I have met and interviewed some amazing people.


We each follow our moral compass shaped by training. Mine is sculpting, architecture, sociology, anthropology and betterment of our shared world by community advocacy… and saving trees.


A freelance writer and copywriter for almost 20 years, I have written for publications all over the world and couldn’t imagine myself in any other job.


My yearly NZ Weather Almanacs began in 1999. During the tragic 2011 Christchurch earthquakes, my work created international interest. I currently live in Ponsonby.


A life long advocate for community issues, I am passionate about protecting and enhancing our natural environment and built heritage.


I am a young local writer who loves to read! Each month you will find my reviews of new books for people who love to read as much as I do.


I am the councillor for Waitematā & Gulf. A former seafarer, former chair of the ARC, conservationist, PT advocate, and author. I have represented the Ponsonby area since 1992.


Journalist and published author, I have had a career involving both wine writing and hosting boutique wine tours in the Auckland region.


I am an Aucklander of Indian origin, Punjabi and Sikh. I have a keen interest in food, wine and politics.


I am a passionate Ayurveda practitioner based in Ponsonby for the last 15 years. Inspiring others to live a healthy and fulfilled life is my higher purpose.


I have had a wanderlust for travel ever since I was old enough to own a passport. Since I discovered cruising, I have become unstoppable.

SIDART, Level 1, Three Lamps Plaza, 283 Ponsonby Road T: 09 360 2122 www.sidart.co.nz
photography: Alex McVinnie

Find your top spot

Whether it’s a brand new architectural feature like 56 Pollen St, or a classic character refurb, we’ve got special spaces to suit all kinds of businesses.

Retail and Office spaces available for lease now:

PH 09 522 0039


This month we talk with {Suite} Gallery about their exciting upcoming exhibition featuring 35 new photographs by internationally renowned photographer Ans Westra.

Can you share with us the inspiration behind this specific exhibition?

This exhibition honours Ans’s work one year after her passing, and is also timed to coincide with the launch of Paul Moon’s biography about Ans’s life, out on 9 May. This exhibition introduces 35 new images that have just been printed for the first time in the modern era, so it will be exciting to see people’s reactions to images that they've never seen before.

How has Suite Gallery provided a platform for artists like Ans Westra to showcase their work?

The Westra archive is managed by a company established by Ans and Suite Director David Alsop in 2013. As well as cataloguing and guardianship of the archive, and print sales and copyright management, we run the @answestra instagram account (well worth a look) and hold regular exhibitions of Ans’s images in our Wellington and Ponsonby galleries. See suite.co.nz/answestra

How does Ans Westra's work resonate with the audience?

Ans’s work operates on many levels. There’s the documentary aspect, the cultural significance, artistic merit and a feeling of nostalgia when one looks at her work. Generally, Ans has seen beauty in people and places, and recorded that in an artistic way.

What unique elements do you think Ans Westra brings to the art world as a photographer?

Ans thought of herself as an artist first and foremost, not just a photographer. We notice, particularly when we take Ans’s images overseas, that she is revered as an artist on any stage. When we look at her images as New Zealanders, we bring with us a context that informs (partly) how we read the image. Without that context, the images operate mostly as artistic creations. Ans’s photography is widely praised as was seen with tributes being published in The New York Times and The Guardian.

Can you speak about any challenges or highlights faced during the preparation for this exhibition?

A constant challenge with such a massive photo archive is the selection of images to show! We wanted to include a few images photographed in Ponsonby and other parts of Auckland.

How do you think Ans Westra's style has evolved over the years, and what can viewers expect to see in this current collection?

The style of the images in this exhibition will be familiar to people who know Ans’s documentary work. The images are all black and white images photographed across the 1960s –80s. In the early 2000s, Ans moved away from photographing people to what she called her creative work: photographs of gardens and the landscape, sometimes to demonstrate what a mess humans and climate change have made.

Lastly, how do you envision the impact of Ans’s work on art enthusiasts and aspiring photographers?

Ans is so iconic that many aspiring photographers want to be like her. In the Westra Vault that we have set up in Wellington (where the archive is stored) we have displays of Ans’s cameras, proof sheets and ephemera. When we get more organised we’ll be able to take visitors there. Stay tuned!

{SUITE} GALLERY, 189 Ponsonby Road, T: 09 218 4399, www.suite.co.nz

Ans Westra, Ponsonby, 1971, courtesy of {Suite} Gallery Ans Westra & David Alsop outside Ans’ house at Tirohanga in 2020, photographed by Joseph Kelly Ans Westra, Mangere, 1963, courtesy of {Suite} Gallery
Ans Westra, Wellington, 1974, courtesy of {Suite} Gallery Ans Westra, Rotorua, 1963, courtesy of {Suite} Gallery Ans Westra, Kaikohe, 1982, courtesy of {Suite} Gallery Ans Westra, Rangitukia, 1981, courtesy of {Suite} Gallery Ans Westra, Wellington, 1971, courtesy of {Suite} Gallery Ans Westra, Ruatoria, 1963, courtesy of {Suite} Gallery

Cam Millar Manager The Estate at Webb’s

Since its inception in early 2023, The Estate at Webb’s auction house has been somewhat of a hidden gem both for bargain hunters and connoisseurs of enduring design objects full of uniqueness, pedigree and personality.

The Estate at Webb’s is a fortnightly, online auction and physical gallery/showroom space presenting a diverse range of design treasures varying from decorative homewares to rare and large pieces of furniture by local and international makers. It’s the ultimate vintage market and the best place to buy second hand and vintage in New Zealand.

Situated adjacent to Webb’s primary gallery in Mount Eden, this locale offers a unique chance to experience furniture and lighting from a variety of design eras, glassware, ceramics, art, and more all available for purchase via online auction at exceptionally affordable prices.

According to Cam Millar, manager of The Estate, “we are often graced by objects from some of New Zealand and the world’s most well-known designers. The Estate is an Aladdin’s cave of Scandinavian. American and even local New Zealand design.

“We have seen objects from the Memphis Revival movement, gems of industrial design, as well as more every day, utilitarian homewares and objects that are one offs or incredibly rare,” continues Millar.

What makes The Estate interesting is that sometimes these items are being auctioned with no reserve, by motivated vendors who would like to see these objects passed on to people who truly appreciate them, understand

their significance or can give them the care and attention they deserve.

“If all the planets align, buyers can walk away with significant design pieces at prices that are hard to believe, from B&B Italia sofas to sublime Italian lighting and everything in between,” Millar continues, “obviously, other times we have sellers who are very wellversed in the importance of their items and want to reach the best prices. In those cases we do everything in our power to set realistic reserves and reach the highest hammer prices for them.”

While these are online auctions, the space is curated and on view for a week leading up to the auction closing. This provides our bidders with an opportunity to engage with the pieces and speak with our specialist team – who are on hand to assist with any queries.

contact Cam Millar Manager, The Estate +64 9 529 5601 +64 22 342 5610 cameron@webbs.co.nz

The Estate at Webb’s

Buying With Us

+ Select your objects of desire either by visiting our online catalogue or exploring our gallery space

+ Go online to auctions.webbs.co.nz

+ Either ‘Login’ to your account or ‘Register’ a new account (it is easy!)

+ Find ‘The Estate’ auction currently in progress

+ Click ‘Register’ and follow the prompts

+ Now that you are all set: Just find the items you wish to bid on and put in your highest bids

+ If you have been outbid we will send you an email — before bidding closes — to see if you would like to increase the amount you are willing to pay

+ If you win the auction (congratulations!) you will receive an email with payment and collection instructions

+ Enjoy your new treasures and… see you again in a fortnight when The Estate unveils yet another impressive treasure trove of unique and incredibly enticing items.

Selling With Us

+ Take a picture of what you want us to sell. If it is a large collection, call us and one of our team will come to you.

+ Email it to us with a description of what you have. We will reply to you with an estimate of what you are likely to get at auction

+ If you are keen to go ahead, just bring us your item, sign a contract and we take care of the cataloguing, photographing, marketing and (hopefully!) selling of your item

+ We deal with shipping your objects to their new owner

+ Your proceeds are deposited into your designated account, minus our competitive fees

Upcoming Auctions at The Estate

5 — 9 April

The Estate Showroom Open

19 — 23 April

The Estate Showroom Open

3 — 7 May

The Estate Showroom Open


The Estate at Webb’s 31d Normanby Road Mount Eden

Auckland 1024

viewing times Fri/Mon/Tue, 10am – 5pm Sat, 10am – 4pm


Private Sales Valuations webbs.co.nz

Request an Appraisal


Proxima Residences, a striking addition to Uptown’s skyline, is an unmissable landmark. Comprising of 67 meticulously crafted apartments, these elegant residences exceed expectations with their commitment to quality.

Nestled in the heart of Ponsonby, Mt Eden, Newmarket, Kingsland and Upper Queen Street, Proxima Residences boasts an enviable location amidst Auckland's finest suburbs. Residents will relish the tranquillity of its fringe setting while enjoying convenient access to the city's premier cultural hubs, cafes and restaurants. Situated just minutes from major motorways and a short stroll from upcoming City Rail Link stations, its location is unparalleled.

As the scaffolding comes down and the façade is unveiled, the neighbourhood buzzes with excitement, marvelling at the elegance and boldness it brings to the area.

Construkt Architects have meticulously designed each apartment. "Total apartment areas are generous and living areas dynamic, with all apartments including large, covered balconies," explains Russell Cannons, director and lead architect. "The balconies of the two-bedroom apartments on the Randolph Street façade, enjoy almost all-day sun and the city skyline, while those facing Newton Road offer extensive views through to the Waitakere and stunning sunsets." Cannons finds immense satisfaction in witnessing the gradual reveal of the building to the Newton skyline, noting how the design has surpassed expectations. "Leading a project that contributes significantly to the urban regeneration of Auckland's city fringe is extremely rewarding," he adds.

Prospective buyers now have the opportunity to view fully staged apartments before purchase. Feedback from early purchasers has been overwhelmingly positive. "First impressions of the finished apartments at Proxima were outstanding, with exceptional attention to detail," remarks Josh, a satisfied buyer.

Each apartment is equipped with Miele integrated appliances, a Blum kitchen cabinetry system, Grohe tapware, and heat pumps. Carpark options, including EV charging infrastructure, are available.

One-bedroom apartments start from only $699,000, two-bedroom from $1,115,000, and three-bedroom subpenthouse from $1,850,000, with penthouses also available upon request. With an estimated completion in May, now is the time to take advantage of pre-completion pricing.

For a tour of our fully staged apartments, contact Aaron Cook from Barfoot & Thompson on M: 021 612 642 today.


Construkt Team - Jaco Fourie, Jade March, Russell Cannons, Leticia Silva and Francois Breedt



Ponsonby News asked eight of our readers to tell us their experiences of living in apartments.

Twenty years ago these were harder to sell, with many Kiwis wanting their dream of a family house on a quarter-acre section. But now, virtually it seems like every corner has apartments on it or has them planned as our city grows. Our eight interviews include a marketing director, a politician, the Mayor, a real estate agent, a maximalist and a semi retired couple.

Mayor Wayne Brown: View from our apartment at start of the round world yacht race.

We live about halfway up the Metropolis building, so we have a view of the north and east of the city, the harbour and the North Shore. Opening our double sliding doors we can see straight down to Freyberg Square. We love that, but we have had quite a few visitors who couldn’t handle the height at all!

We like our level because we get the view plus the entertainment of watching the action in the streets and on the sea. We also get to see the sun and moon rise on the eastern horizon.

Our building has a gym, swimming pool, sauna and they are great for getting to know people. It’s quite social if you are open to it. Even the lift ride is a good way to get to know people. There are a few social events every year for apartment owners. Our building has about 400 apartments so has about 600 people? That’s like a small village.

Everything is handy when you live in the city. Dentist, doctor, copy shop, gift shop, $2 shop, library, supermarket, cafes, cheap eats. Power walking in the city is great. An hour's walk goes by quickly because there’s always so much to look at. You come across buskers, events, markets, demonstrations, the weird and wonderful!

Noise – our building is very well built with thick walls, so we don’t get disturbed by neighbours at all, but we’ve heard people in other buildings complain of noisiness from neighbouring apartments. That’s something to check if you are going to buy one.

The occasional party happens in a nearby apartment but security is onto it quite quickly.

Friday and Saturday nights can be noisy in the city, so we shut the windows those nights, but otherwise we like the fresh air feel of them open.

We would definitely avoid apartments relying solely on aircon. Of course, it’s a luxury for sure to have the option of air conditioning and heating with a flick of a switch. We like that.

A body corp fee, like it or not, is part and parcel of apartment living. Residents certainly need people on their body corp

committee who have the right experience and committee members who get on with each other. Our body corp has never failed us in the last eight years.

They arrange regular visits of police drug dogs to keep on top of drug cooking and crime. That’s another important question to ask if you have a plan to live high rise.

Maybe on the down side in our building, pets are not allowed and our guests have to pay for parking in the city when they visit us. Our apartments are mostly too small to accommodate big dinner parties. But, on the plus side, we observe that people in wheelchairs can live in an apartment and use the city very successfully.

Other positives… house work is minimal. There are no outside house maintenance jobs to do like mowing, window washing, de-spidering. No pruning, HRV, water or septic tank responsibilities. No kindling to cut. We also regularly go away camping without worrying about security.

Sharing a building – our power bill is very low as the building is always quite warm. The water bill is included in the body corp fees and we all share in the building insurance.

We are in the hands of the generic building facilities, so we keep a giant bottle of water in case of a water supply emergency. It’s never happened though.

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 27
Michael and Kathryn Avenell

Occasionally, people do things like burn their toast and we all know about it because the fire alarm goes off. The morning begins with a collective moan. We have ear plugs for that. We’ve never had to actually leave the building thank goodness, except for a drill.

Space is limited in an apartment of course so we use every little nook and cranny to store things. It’s an exercise in creativity. Our lifestyle helps. We don’t use a microwave, so that makes for extra kitchen shelf storage. We use the twin drawer dish washer as storage instead of dish washing, so the kitchen is not a place where we feel cramped at all.

We don’t use a clothes drier (because the clothes mostly dry overnight on a clothes horse), so we have a small freezer instead in that space, (on top of the washing machine in a cupboard), much more useful.

Ours is an open plan style apartment. We have a kitchen bar instead of a dining table. Shared dining with guests is round the coffee table. We use the second bedroom as a second living room. Michael’s desk is in the lounge by the TV. Luckily, we hardly watch the TV.

Kathryn’s desk has three jobs – office workspace, sewing base and workspace for remote spiritual energy healing, which she does by phone.

We have no balcony, so Kathryn grows sprouts and a few greens in pot plants by the window. She shed tears in the first week, “Where are my lemon tree and my kale garden?” But you find ways round that.

So many people told us, “You can put a lemon tree in a pot,” but it only takes a week to eat six lemons and then you have to keep it alive till the plant can come up with six more. No, too much work. Even if we did have a balcony, it’s too harsh

an environment for plants. But you get used to buying a few bits in the organic shop, and foraging for wild edibles like dandelions in wild park spaces adds nutrients to what the supermarket offers.

We have one carpark (a carpark is worth about $100K so one is enough for us). We also have a big storage cupboard downstairs for garage-type storage.

Healthwise… when you live in a city apartment building, I believe you need to get a balance by walking in nature. I do barefoot walking in Abert Park, in the dewy grass. It’s so beautiful there under the big trees.


Are you currently living in an apartment and where are you based?

Yes – I reside in Vinegar Lane in Ponsonby/Grey Lynn and have done so for a while now.

What motivated you to buy or rent one?

I’ve lived in apartments for the past 10 years in Auckland and have always really enjoyed the experience.

What do you like most about this way of living?

It’s great to be able to ‘lock and leave’, with no garden or ground maintenance, no unexpected visitors can come to your door and, most importantly, I like the secure access to the apartment building and parking my car in a gated garage.

Is the body corporate affordable and what does it include?

The body corporate costs are pretty standard, and include the annual external window clean, weekly rubbish and recycle collection, general maintenance and the upkeep of the shared green space.

Any downsides?

The only inconvenience is when you have lots of shopping bags to carry, you can’t park right outside your front door! Other than that, apartment living has many positives.


Are you currently living in an apartment and where are you based?

Yes, I live at the top of Shortland Street.

What motivated you to buy one?

I was motivated to buy for convenience, it being only five or six minutes mostly under cover walk to and from work.

What do you like most about this way of living?

Low maintenance, secure and super convenient is what I like most about this way of living. Having Albert Park nearby is wonderful to get some fresh air in and I don't have to mow the lawns or pay someone else to do it.

Is the body corporate affordable and what does it include?

The body corporate is not too bad for a boutique building of only 29 apartments, it's part and parcel of this way of living. I understand there is a lot of compliance these days on buildings to keep everyone safe with lift servicing contracts, fire sprinkler system surveys and alarm testing, to the building warrant of fitness, not to mention insurance costs which everyone who owns a property just has to accept.

Any downsides?

The building I live in and bought into some time back is a little bit older so no double glazing, air-conditioning and a bit of maintenance comes up from time to time. The newer ones like Proxima Residences in Eden Terrace, however, have

Melissa Fergusson

good peace of mind being built to meet or exceed the latest building code so provide even greater comfort, ease of living and have super low body corp levies in comparison.


We live in Westmere in a three-level townhouse. We left our villa in Ponsonby, as our two boys were off to live their lives and we were keen to travel. Low maintenance in a lovely suburb not too far out. (Then came Covid.)

We do have a house in Northland where we can spread out and feel the grass on our bare feet. It is an old house so we still get our fill of maintenance and it does soothe the renovation bug.

What motivated you to buy or rent one?

We left our Ponsonby villa for a lockup and leave to spend more time out of Auckland. We liked the idea of new for a change but keen to stay on this side of town. You can see and smell the sea.

What do you like most about this way of living?

It’s easy. Little or no maintenance, you get the community closeness of traditional Ponsonby and the convenience of design made for today's style of living and entertaining.

In moving to Westmere, we’ve found a lot of familiar faces from Maryjane’s long involvement in Kelmarna Gardens and mine with Western Springs football. It’s a great community here and we finally have a sea view.

Is the body corporate affordable and what does it include?

We were keen not to be part of a body corporate and we’re lucky to find a property which is a duplex on strata titles.

Any downsides?

In the summer months, we miss the sense of space and privacy we had in our large villa and the fact we can’t fit a pool in the front yard.


Are you currently living in an apartment and where are you based?

Yes, I am in Ockham's Aalto in Morningside, a brand new build that opened its doors in September last year.

What motivated you to buy or rent one?

A series of extremely fortunate coincidences led me to my first home, a story that could begin with 'It started with a kiss...', and traverses debt, connection with family and optimism through tough times. Intrigue aside, I love the tiny home living. I think high-quality apartments are important in creating a thriving modern city. They elevate a community's diversity, give people access to otherwise unaffordable suburbs, and for those of us who don't actually want the so-called Kiwi quarter-acre dream, it literally opens the door to small footprint living.

Aalto's building design has community at its heart. We have access to a sun-soaked penthouse lounge with a full kitchen and dining area and generous roof deck with stunning rooftop views, a shared work from home office on the same floor (my company's based in Wellington) and a bookable guest bedroom. And we're pet friendly.

What do you like most about this way of living?

I lived in Saint Marys Bay for 12 years and I probably wouldn't know the majority of my neighbours in a line-up. In contrast, living just six months at Aalto, I've met probably half the building's residents (and pets) and we even managed a successful Christmas pot-luck. Finch Street has welcomed us into the fold too, inviting us to its community fiestas and a local

brewery meet-up. Some of us in the building are creating plans to enjoy the winter months too, like games nights, wine and dine evenings, brunch club and maybe a few Sunday sessions. I love being near a train station, which will connect to the City Rail Link, a varied bus network and having easy access to the motorway.

Is the body corporate affordable and what does it include?

The body corporate levies are among the more affordable in the city – several thousand less than others I have seen – and less than the money a homeowner would need to set aside for ongoing building maintenance. They pay for insurance, our gardens, cleaners, lifts, building electricity, free wifi in the lounge and WFH office, our building management team, rubbish removal and exterior window washing.

Any downsides?

So far, no. After being Ponsonby-centric for decades, I am obsessed with this little gem of a suburb, and I'm loving discovering more and meeting more neighbours every week. Pasifika was just a stroll down the road, and Mt Eden concerts are a 15-minute walk away. Our Aalto community contributes financially and socially to the neighbourhood, and I can't wait for more high-quality apartment buildings to join us – emphasis on 'high quality'.


My wife and I have owned and lived in apartments in various parts of Ponsonby all this century. We started in Blake Street, the Hopetoun and currently are in 8 Hereford up 16 stories with lovely city and harbour views. If we moved again it would be to an apartment.

We like apartments as we don’t need lawns and love being close to the city and its restaurants and bars and experiencing what a city offers, especially compared to suburban living that involves so much daily travel.

Body corporate fees are reasonable and allow us to have a swimming pool and gymnasium that we wouldn’t have individually on our own.

On the selfish side, we are happy that mostly there aren’t kids everywhere. When ours were younger, we had our own place with lots of room for them but now they have left home the apartment is an ideal living solution.

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 29


Ponsonby has always been a special place for Steve Gustafsson, landscape designer and owner of Natural Gardens Limited.

While living here in the nineties and landscaping his own villa, he realised a passion for garden design that facilitates outdoor living.

“Basically we had a beautiful house, with a terrible backyard,” recalls Steve. “There were French doors, but they opened out to nothing.

“I wanted to be able to use the outdoor space. We created an outdoor room that we then virtually lived in.”

He discovered his passion for integrating the outdoors and indoors.

Since then, Steve has owned and operated his own landscape design and build service, Natural Gardens, delivering tailormade garden designs for homeowners across Devonport.

Steve and his team are now offering their services in Ponsonby and surrounding suburbs, where it all began.

“I know and love Ponsonby,” says Steve. “We are there daily, with both my children working there. The similarities to Devonport mean it’s a natural fit for us.”

Prior to creating Natural Gardens, Steve renovated and landscaped many of his own Auckland properties. As a result, he always sees house and garden together as an integrated whole. His hands-on experience results in practical solutions, and he recycles materials wherever possible. A particular strength is using edible and native plants within designs in inventive and intentional ways.

“Good design is purposeful design,” states Steve. “Every client is different and it’s a pleasure seeing their unique needs and personality reflected in the end result.

“Our homes have a unique dual function. They’re practical — shelter, food and day-to-day living. What an integrated outdoor space does is remind us that life is about more than just surviving and functioning. Being outdoors reminds us that we are part of nature, that resting, regenerating and relaxing are equally important.”

For further information: M: 021 345 694; www.naturalgardens.co.nz

APARTMENT LIVING Whether you are planning a garden refresh or a full renovation, let us work with you to define your vision so that you can proceed with a plan. LANDSCAPE DESIGN PONSONBY CALL STEVE ON 021 345 694 steve@naturalgardens.co.nz @natural.gardens
YOUR ICONIC AUCKLAND RESIDENCE. A special project by Finished. Ready to move in. Welcoming the final members of The Greenhouse community. Situated in the heart of Ponsonby, Auckland’s premier dining and retail strip. Named for its 150,000 iridescent, green-glazed, handmade bricks from Italy’s Sant’Anselmo — and inspired by the landscapes of Tāmaki Makaurau — it’s a once-in-a-lifetime project for awardwinning Ockham Residential. Beautiful, timeless luxury in Auckland’s most irresistible suburb, this elegant edifice is the very best we could imagine. Whether you’re after a new home in a dazzling metropolitan neighbourhood, or an Auckland bolthole to suit your lifestyle, The Greenhouse is a building you’ll be proud to call home. www.ockham.co.nz Zara Kehoe Ph: 021 162 4451 E: zara@ockham.co.nz Lisa Redgrove Ph: 021 415 980 E: lisa@ockham.co.nz Contact: 20 WILLIAMSON AVENUE


New Zealand’s tourism industry has gained considerable momentum over the last year, with Covid-19 restrictions now a thing of the past.

Short-term rentals, in particular, have experienced a boom in business, with the rise of business travel, working remotely and the demand for more intimate accommodation coming off the back of the pandemic.

Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky has said the platform would not have seen such a sharp recovery from the initial Covid-19 impact had it not been for millions working from Airbnbs – a trend that has only increased now the hustle and bustle of the global travel industry has returned.

At The Stay Hub, Auckland’s largest short-term rental management company and one of New Zealand’s fastest growing, we have already experienced a significant uptick in nights booked and an increase in check-ins compared to the beginning of 2023.

Short-term rentals do not need to achieve 100% occupancy year round to see higher returns than long-term renting, and results so far are tracking strong. Regarding regional performance for February, the best areas across our portfolio included Westmere and Mount Eden, achieving a solid occupancy of 97%, Herne Bay with 88%, Ponsonby and Point Chevalier sitting at 84%, the CBD coasting in at 86%, Upper Harbour at 82%, and areas out towards Howick coming in at 84%. Additionally, Devonport and Takapuna sat at 81%.

Whilst we saw an average occupancy of just under 84% for all areas across Auckland, the local market took in under 70%, highlighting the value of professional property management. For the past six months, The Stay Hub’s overall occupancy has sat at 86%.

Property owners looking to explore short-term renting will find that apartments, townhouses and family homes all perform

well in the market, depending on location and amenities. Apartments in Auckland’s CBD and around the city fringe can be particularly lucrative when paired with fully equipped kitchens and additional amenities such as parking, balconies and building facilities like pools, spas, saunas and gyms. A view never goes unmissed, whether you own an apartment or freestanding property.

Aside from the benefits of having an in-house team of pricing optimisation specialists, property managers and maximised global marketing exposure, an enticing pull to move into professional management is that a team of seasoned experts will take care of everything, so you don’t have to. If you are interested in getting back the value of your free time and seeing what the market can offer you as a property owner, reach out to The Stay Hub to learn what you could earn.


Auckland’s largest Short-term Rental Management Company Why should you join The Stay Hub? Reclaim your weekends and leave the work to us. Contact our expert and learn what you could earn www.thestayhub.co.nz 027 265 1136 or freephone 0508 782 9482 ⌂ Your gateway to hands-off property management ⌂ Heading overseas? Lock it and leave it - we manage the rest ⌂ Fixed pricing is in the past with dynamic rates & optimisation ⌂ Short-term, long-term? We’ve got you covered on both fronts ⌂ Need a short-stay in your pad? Short-term rentals - yes, you can Kickback and unwind in your free time with our complete management services.


Twelve opulent apartments in a popular location, with unobstructed ridge-line views, within a building imagined by internationally recognised architects Fearon Hay. This is Ponsonby personified.

Tell us the backstory for this development?

Ponsonby Road has been the area’s principal thoroughfare since the 1850s and the main commercial strip was historically concentrated at the Three Lamps end, where PoP will be built. Originally owned and operated by Walter Lambourne, the wooden building on the corner of Cowan Street was destroyed in a fire in 1901. The replacement heritage building at 286 Ponsonby Road has plans dating 1908, the likely date of its construction. We believe this site is both iconic and significant, and the long-standing history has formed the basis for the concept and design of the development.

Why develop in Ponsonby?

Ponsonby is close to home and close to our hearts. We live in the area, walk our dogs here, buy our coffees here and raise our kids here. This is a real legacy project for us and one that we envision will carry this significant site far into the future.

We have a track record now exceeding 60 projects, with the majority of these sitting in and around the city fringe. Ponsonby is vibrant, eclectic and stylish – the perfect location for the coming together of living, work and play.

How long is the building process?

The building process will likely take 22 months from the first spade in the ground to owners moving in.

Are there any testimonials or client reviews?

We are proud to have ‘repeat’ customers who have bought multiple apartments from our developments and keep coming back for more. We‘ve been in the apartment business for 20-odd years, and have won a bunch of awards along the way but we are most proud of creating good homes for good people that stand the test of time.

“Amazing group of people who have made the purchase experience fun and exciting! The team at Urban Collective really knows how to design and build a quality modern group of homes, not just apartments” – citizen owner

What type of businesses will occupy the commercial spaces?

Rodd and Gunn’s international flagship retail, bar and restaurant will be featured in the northern end of the building, spilling out onto the landscaped terrace. Offices are across both buildings at Level 1. For the remaining commercial offerings we have a curated mix of fine dining restaurant operators, health and beauty and boutique bars and eateries. Think European laneways, outdoor dining, greenery and bespoke architecture. It’s going to be pretty special.

For more information, please contact Steve Groves on M: 021 308 000. For more information please visit www.pop.nz


Twelve opulent apartments in a premier location, with unobstructed ridge-line views, within a building imagined by internationally recognised architects Fearon Hay.

This is Ponsonby Personified.

Pompallier on Ponsonby Exclusive offer —12 luxury apartments for sale —40% under contract Visit PoP.nz
quality project by Urban Co.
Urban Co
308 000
Steve Groves


Top performing Auckland real estate salesperson Blair Haddow of Bayleys Ponsonby is taking a philanthropic approach to supporting the next generation of Aucklanders.

Blair is underwriting a scholarship for one hard-working student aiming to complete Bachelor of Business studies at the Auckland University of Technology.

Blair was motivated to underwrite the scholarship sponsorship after initially meeting with Auckland University of Technology’s vice-chancellor to look at potential mentoring, career advisory opportunities, on-the-job placement and guest lecturing invitations at the education provider.

However, delving further down into the student nurturing opportunities, community-spirited Blair was motivated to sponsor a scholarship, which will in due course be awarded to a worthy recipient who has shown a commitment to undertaking tertiary education which, without financial assistance, would possibly not be attainable or achievable.

“Community support comes in many shapes and forms –from sponsoring a local school, sports club, team or cultural organisation, through to supporting the next generation of Aucklanders in helping grow a better city and life… for both the recipient and the Auckland community as a whole,” said Blair, who has been selling real estate across Auckland’s inner-west suburbs for two decades.

“Ironically, I was talking about my AUT scholarship sponsorship with a couple of clients recently and it transpired that she is, in fact, an AUT professor/lecturer, so there’s quite a bit of synergy between real estate and education.

“One of AUT’s Bachelor of Business degree course focuses is the positive social impact and the difference which graduates can make to society as a whole. That very much resonates with my personal beliefs and ethos.

“For me, selling real estate in the locales of Ponsonby, Herne Bay, Grey Lynn, Westmere, St Marys Bay and Freemans Bay, is about creating a positive change for both vendors and buyers. So, sponsoring a degree course which shares how I view business and life in general was a perfect fit.”

Blair’s scholarship is to be awarded to a ‘role model’ Bachelor of Business student who has demonstrated excellence in both effort and achievement during the first year of studies. Disciplines under AUT’s Bachelor of Business degree classification range from accounting, IT, economics and finance, through to management and marketing – giving students not only an insight into how businesses operate, but also giving them visibility on the issues they will face as future decision makers.

While academic achievement will be assessed as part of Blair’s scholarship sponsorship, grades will not be the sole defining factor, with applicants having to demonstrate an innovative and entrepreneurial mindset to their studies and course content.

“Those aspects really resonated with my and the way I do business,” said Blair.

”When you’re marketing a home for sale, you have to take an innovative approach to every listing. While we do use

templated and proven marketing programmes at Bayleys Real Estate, every listing must be treated individually within that paradigm to take account of the unique and special features and attributes it may have and how those characteristics will appeal to different buyer niches.

“Simultaneous to that, real estate sales people as selfemployed contractors have to be entrepreneurial – always looking for new opportunities, using our networks of contacts and thinking outside the square on how we can deliver successful solutions for our clients at any time of year, in any phase of the property cycle.

“While I never undertook tertiary education at a university level, I feel like every day at work I’m doing something I would have no doubt learnt about if I had gone down that route before eventually settling into a real estate sales career. Saying that, you never stop learning which, ironically, is something I’m always learning at Bayleys Ponsonby,” laughs Blair.

Blair said he was looking forward to meeting his AUT scholarship sponsorship recipient in due course and potentially mentoring them through their studies.

In the meantime, Blair is spending countless hours with his talented Bayleys Ponsonby sales associates preparing new marketing collateral for the latest portfolio of beautiful innerwest Auckland homes he has just brought onto the market for sale – all available to view on Blair’s pages within the Bayleys website, or by registering directly with Blair to be on his email database which provides potential purchasers with ‘early bird’ viewing opportunities before those dwellings are officially brought to market.



Rose and Heather are relocating to a purpose built workshop and studio display space at 102 Onehunga mall, Onehunga.

Combining both as a workshop and showroom the site offers great light, great space and the opportunity to see firsthand the craftsmanship on hand , taking you through the journey of creating beautiful pieces.

Located on the corner of Neilson and Onehunga Mall, it offers quick access off the motorway with ample onsite parking.

Our new studio showroom will open in April , by appointment weekdays

For our workshop open weekends please check our website for upcoming dates... offering both the opportunity to see our ranges and a bespoke service for any pieces that require a tweak or redesign to fit your specifications.

With our craftsman’s expertise now on hand this is a simple, exciting process.

PONSONBY NEWS+ July 2021 79 78 PONSONBY NEWS+ July 2021 PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH(except January) 366 Great North Road Grey Lynn t:09 376 2895 www.roseandheather.co.nz THE BAILEY TABLE HOMEWHERETHEHEARTIS WE’RE MOVING TO A NEW HOME www.roseandheather.co.nz 102 Onehunga Mall, Onehunga, t:09 376 2895
38 PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH (except January) meluka.co.nz SHOP ONLINE OR IN STORE Furniture. Simply B Y D ANSK E M ØBL E R 15 % OFF ALL BOOK SHELVES APARTMENT LIVING @ MELUKA Shop Meluka’s wide range of accessories, books, homewares, bookshelves and more. Hurry online to shop the full range now www.meluka.co.nz

As one of our customers recently shared, the blinds were only part of it.

"I knew I wanted to create a modern yet comfortable look for our new home.

"With no window furnishings, I knew I needed some blinds. However, I didn’t think about it much more than that – I wasn’t sure if I wanted verticals, Roman or rollers. So, when the team at The Blinds Experience suggested I take advantage of their free offer to meet with an Independent Interior Consultant, I said yes.

"Whilst I had seen in magazines and online those great home makeovers on a budget, how does that all come together? Who has the time to think of all the elements?

"The Blinds Experience booked me some time with Kylee from The Style House. She came to my house and found out what look and feel I liked, then we focused on the lounge, entrance and hallway. I learned so much about how to bring those elements ‘in the magazines’ together, on a very tight budget – a simple mirror placed in the right spot in the hallway to bounce light in, keeping my hallway simple and uncluttered with some sleek roller blinds, and other simple yet effective suggestions. I chose roller blinds in colour and texture that tones with the overall décor – but with just the right amount of contrast. The Blinds Experience team then came and fitted the blinds super quickly with no mess. The blinds were only one part of my small makeover."

Natalia – North Shore, Auckland


The Blinds Experience’s simple 3-step proposition:

Step 1 – Take time to connect with our truly independent interior designer – Kylee Murphy from The Style House. 6090 minutes is often all that’s needed to get your ideas out of your head and bounce them around with Kylee – there is no charge to you for this valuable time with a truly independent interior consultant.

Step 2 – The team at The Blinds Experience picks it up from there, taking the ideas from your session with Kylee and turning them into reality with locally made, quality window furnishings.

Step 3 – Finally have the feeling that you did some ‘good in the hood’ in a simple and yet meaningful way. On your behalf, we will donate 5% of the value of your purchase to one of two of our partner charities – you simply choose which one and we send you a certificate of your donation.

Our Total Care Package ensures that your blinds work as you expected them to, or we fix them for free.

So, if you feel that you don’t have time to bring a fresh new integrated look to your home space, touch base with the team at The Blinds Experience, as our customers have found out… the blinds are only part of it!

Call for more information: M: 021 139 2317, www.theblindsexperience.co.nz

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 39
WORKING WITH YOU TO ENHANCE YOUR HOME Experience our range of Blinds and Independent interior designer. Be part of our social mission giving back to the community. Phone 021 139 2317 or visit us online now theblindsexperience.com



Welcome to Whangarei Heads where the beauty of nature converges with the warmth of human connection.

Unexpected tenants are rarely welcome when purchasing property, but the noisy guest was a delightful surprise for Whangarei couple Neil and Janeen Rabone. "When we first moved into 2050 Whangarei Heads Road, a kiwi lived in the bush next to the house,” says Janeen. "He would wander around at night, calling his name. We've loved all our neighbours, but he was particularly special!"

The couple purchased the waterfront home in 2016 after moving north from Mangawhai. "The first time we saw the property, it was a tumbledown home in desperate need of TLC. We immediately knew that we were the people to do it.

“We couldn't walk away and leave it as it was," says Neil. The couple have carefully restored the four-bedroom home to capture comfortable coastal chic; it's fresh, modern and inviting. Wholly re-wired and re-roofed, the property's singlelevel layout effortlessly merges indoor comfort with outdoor allure. But what truly sets this property apart is the vibrant community spirit.

From New Year beach parties to impromptu fishing trips, McLeod Bay is where camaraderie flourishes and memories are made. Life comprises simple pleasures: neighbours sharing their catch of the day, shopping bags of feijoas shared from laden trees, and hands lent when needed.

"We've never lived somewhere like McLeod Bay. The community can't do enough for you. They'll help look after the place and look after you simultaneously. It's always fun; we leave our interactions with a big smile."

As one chapter ends, another begins, and for Neil and Janeen, it is time to move closer to their beloved family. The couple have entrusted the sale of 2050 Whangarei Heads Road to experienced local agents Sam Swinburne and Jude Copland from Bayleys Whangarei.

"Waterfront properties such as this are rare opportunities, particularly in McLeod Bay," says Sam. "These homes are heirlooms, often held by generations of the same family. This is a chance to create your legacy and own a quintessential Kiwi property." 2050 Whangarei Heads Road is the ultimate beach retreat with a four-ton mooring, private boat ramp, high-stud garage and fish filleting station.

Contact the agents to discover more about this exceptional coastal offering.

Sam Swinburne, Residential, Lifestyle and Coastal Sales

M: 027 246 5504


Jude Copland, Residential, Lifestyle and Waterfront Sales Whangarei

M: 021 747 411



Whangarei Heads 2050

Whangarei Heads Road

Beachside bliss with mooring

Discover the enjoyment of waterfront living in the heart of McLeod Bay. Here is your opportunity to secure a beach-side paradise, complete with four tonne mooring, that seamlessly blends style and comfort with stunning natural beauty. Step inside this charming 1960s beach house, Meticulously renovated to modern standards while retaining its timeless coastal character. Three spacious bedrooms plus office or fourth single bedroom offer ample space for family living or hosting your many guests. Entering the home, you're greeted by a beautifully crafted modern kitchen - an exceptional space where design meets practicality. Comfort and quality are paramount here.


4 1 2 2

Asking Price $1,785,000

Jude Copland 021 747 411 jude.copland@bayleys.co.nz

Sam Swinburne 027 246 5504 sam.swinburne@bayleys.co.nz




This grand dame could undoubtedly tell some great stories. Initially located at Upland Road in Remuera, it was later moved to Waimauku.

Upland House is right at home, positioned with elevated poise just minutes from Kumeu and surrounded by the North West's most famous vineyards, golf courses, Muriwai Beach, Riverhead and Woodhill Forests, and stunning wedding venues.

The tone is set with serene and rolling green vistas. Upland House offers a place to unwind and rejuvenate the soul. The stately and expansive grounds are a place to breathe and relax in your country retreat. Altogether incomparable, this estate offers a world of privacy and lifestyle in Waimauku's idyllic countryside. The land is a gently rolling tapestry of pocket orchards, eleven paddocks, wooded glades, shelterbelts and clipped lawns. It is set on approximately 14 acres and offers two entrances on Hamilton and Fletcher Roads in Waimauku.

This property exudes elegance upon entering through the marble pillars with wrought iron gates. The foyer showcases a stately kauri staircase and a chandelier composed of 42 lights, the first of many marvels. The upper level is reserved for the opulent bedrooms, including two primary suites, which are generous in size.

The uppermost terraced balcony is one of many alfresco connections you will enjoy. The resident suite includes a luxurious ensuite, walk-in wardrobe or nursery; one guest suite reveals an ensuite and a few supply ambient fireplaces.

Two formal living areas are characterised by lofty ceilings and flow to a terrace overseeing the expansive grounds and pool. The dining room is decadent, dramatic and moody, with French doors leading to the contemporary kitchen. One will


enjoy the internal access garaging, large enough to fit six Rolls-Royce with additional storage.

The meticulous vendors are well-acquainted with owning classic homes and have tastefully preserved the traditional aspects while embracing individual style and bespoke comfort. In all the spatial splendour and refurbished transformations, this is a homestead to enjoy, share and entertain with at whatever scale the occasion calls for.

A pond at the end of the property irrigates the land; this property lends itself to whatever the imagination or dream stretches to – be it your private golf course, weekend retreat, wedding venue or a spectacular home for the family to enjoy in class.

Upland House is a refined offering in the Auckland rural market. Initially purchased as a weekend house, it quickly became a permanent home and, now, after 15 years, they offer this magnificent property to the market for someone else to enjoy.

Embrace a serene lifestyle and book your private tour with Lani today.

Deadline Sale Thursday 18 April 2024 (unless sold prior) Lani Allard Barfoot & Thompson Waimauku l.allard@barfoot.co.nz

M: 021 281 8700

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 43


Golden Fingers Thai Massage is owned and operated by Nicha in Kingsland, who started her business to share its healing benefits with the community.

Her motto for her business is very simple – a relaxing place where you can be… you! So why be anywhere else?

What inspired you to start your business?

I founded Golden Fingers Thai Massage because I have a deep love for massage and believe in sharing its benefits with others. Massage not only promotes relaxation but also imparts the importance of self care, which has numerous positive effects. Taking care of oneself empowers us to make positive contributions to our families and society.

Is what you do traditional Thai massage, and have New Zealanders taken to massage?

Yes, we are all trained in traditional Thai massage. A lot of our clients have travelled in Thailand and we try to provide a better standard than they have experienced there. Most people enjoy massages.

What do you like the most about Ponsonby?

Ponsonby's vibrant culture, diversity and community spirit seem very appealing.

How have you survived the pandemic, and has it changed your life?

As a Thai massage shop owner, navigating the challenges posed by the pandemic required adaptability and resilience. Implementing safety measures, such as enhanced cleanliness protocols and ensuring compliance with health guidelines became paramount.

Embracing technology for online bookings and promotions also played a crucial role in staying connected with clients during lockdowns. Additionally, offering virtual wellness services and creating unique packages to entice customers helped to maintain revenue streams.

Can you complete the sentence – I will die happy if...?

I have made a positive impact on people's lives, promoting relaxation, healing and overall wellbeing through my Thai massage business.

If you could star in a movie with any living or dead actor or actress, who would it be and why?

I’d choose Keanu Reeves because of his humility and versatility as an actor.

Where would your dream holiday internationally be?

A wellness retreat in Bali, Indonesia. The rich cultural heritage, tranquil landscapes and emphasis on holistic wellness align perfectly with the values of my Thai massage shop.

Most Kiwi thing about you?

My appreciation for nature and the laid back, friendly attitude that defines New Zealanders.

What is the best day of your life to-date?

The grand opening of my Thai massage shop, where I saw my vision come to life and experienced the joy of providing a haven for relaxation and rejuvenation.

If you were reincarnated, what would you like to come back as?

I would really like to come back as a tranquil and serene tropical garden.

How would you like to be remembered?

As a dedicated and passionate entrepreneur who brought the healing benefits of Thai massage to the community.

What do you love most about your age?

I appreciate the experience and wisdom that comes with age. Over the years, I've gained valuable insights into running my business effectively.

Tell us something that you really disapprove of?

I strongly disapprove of dishonesty and lack of integrity, both in personal and business relationships. Trust is essential in all aspects of life.

If you could give your teenaged self some advice, what would it be?

I would advise my teenaged self to embrace challenges as opportunities for growth, stay true to my values and always strive for continuous learning.

Which item of clothing can't you live without and why?

Comfortable and practical footwear is essential for me, especially given the nature of my work.

Where is your favourite place to holiday in New Zealand?

If I were to holiday in New Zealand, I might be drawn to the beautiful landscapes of Queenstown. The serene surroundings would provide a perfect retreat.

What are you insecure about?

Everyone has moments of self doubt, but I work to overcome them.

Who is your favourite hero of fiction and why?

My favourite fictional hero is someone who embodies resilience and adaptability, qualities that are essential in both business and life. Characters like Iron Man or Wonder Woman, who overcome challenges and evolve, resonate with me.

Your greatest weakness/indulgence?

Occasionally indulging in gourmet desserts.

What is your comfort food?

My comfort food is Thai papaya salad.

What is the best thing your parents taught you?

The value of hard work, integrity and kindness.

How would your friends describe you in three words?

Caring, driven and adventurous. (DAVID HARTNELL, MNZM)




We welcome you to view The Old Police Station, designed in 1909 by renowned New Zealand architect John Campbell.

Located near the heart of this vibrant community, the police station was decommissioned in 1989. This imposing triple-brick building has formerly been a wellness centre, a successful B&B and is today a private family home.

Downstairs there are four rooms, currently used as bedrooms/library and study. There is also a dining room, kitchen, storerooms and family bathroom. Upstairs has been sympathetically modified to create a large living room, a master bedroom and another full bathroom.

Adjoining the Police Station is the Cell Block – formerly the jail, now a unique living space with a double and single room, full bathroom and kitchenette.

The fully fenced plot of 953 sqm extends to two street frontages comprised of a swimming pool, mini orchard, gardens, outbuildings and ample parking.

This is a fabulous opportunity to own a piece of New Zealand’s history and a prestigious home. Buy and expect to be envied. View on TradeMe ‘The Old Police Station Thames’. Private Sale – phone for an appointment to view: Michele Farnham, M: 0272 334 408 or Damon Shelly, M: 0274 333 151 FOR SALE


Watercare’s refusal to install equipment to measure overflows into the harbour from the soon-to-be-constructed Herne Bay (sewage) Tunnel has been strongly criticised by experts and this association.

The effect will be that the public won’t know when and how often sewage overflows into the harbour. This means we won’t know whether the system, that is projected to produce less than two (2) overflows p.a., from the eight Herne Bay Engineered Overflow Points, into the harbour every year by 2030, will comply with Watercare’s own brief.

No reason has been given by Watercare for refusing to install this equipment, except that it is “not in the current budget.” Why is this, we ask?

The measurement tool, a ‘weir' or small dam, is installed close to sewer overflow outfalls with sensors that detect water levels, is projected to cost about $1000 to $2000 per ‘outfall’ or overflow point.

The new sewer tunnel will retain the eight outfalls in Herne Bay –two in both Marine Parade and Sarsfield Street, and one in Herne Bay Road, Argyle Street, Sentinel Road and Hamilton Road.

So, say $20,000 for the equipment and $5000 for installation, minor in the overall multi-million-dollar cost of the project, means we won’t know if Watercare will meet its own water quality targets.

When construction of the St Marys Bay Sewerage Tunnel was completed in 2021, monitoring data, similar to what we want for Herne Bay, was installed to check whether the objective overflows into the Waitemata Harbour would reduce from an estimated 99 per year to a projected 20 per year.

Following completion of the project, Dr Ian Wallis, a worldrenowned Australian Engineer, was asked to report on the success or otherwise of the project.

Because data had been collected from installed monitoring equipment as part of the project, he found that in fact discharges into the harbour actually occurred on 49 days in the 12 months following the commissioning of the tunnel.

The Herne Bay Tunnel will run some 1.5 kilometres from Marine Parade to Pt Erin and there connect to the Central Interceptor. It will collect sewage and stormwater from the St Marys Bay Tunnel

and the new Herne Bay Tunnel for transmission to the Mangere Treatment Plant.

If the Central Interceptor Tunnel, that carries both sewage and stormwater, is full, as will occur at times of high rainfall, the connection from the St Marys Bay and Herne Bay Tunnels will be shut for a period.

Then the flows will discharge via the St Marys Bay Tunnel outfall. If that surcharges, then overflows from the eight outfalls located in Herne Bay will result. Without telemetry, it will not be possible to assess the results or optimise the system for maximum efficiency.

Watercare has estimated the frequency of these outflows with complex computer models. However, Dr Wallis says his experience in other cities shows a range of outcomes can occur and monitoring data at the St Marys Bay tunnel enabled potential remedial action that could be undertaken.

Herne Bay Residents Association co-chair Dirk Hudig has been actively trying to get the best quality outcomes for Herne Bay residents from sewage and stormwater projects for over 10 years. He is a member of Western Isthmus Water Quality Improvement Project Community Liaison Group.

The Project members are Watercare, Auckland Council and local resident associations.

“We have to know how this proposed new system performs,” he says. “Herne Bay currently has a combined sewer/ stormwater system that overflows often.” The Herne Bay Project had predicted some ambitious outcomes, he said.

“With overflow projections of less than two annually, Watercare must install overflow measuring telemetry to keep faith with the public and maintain its public credibility.”

To this end, HBRAI has demanded that overflow telemetry be a condition of the Resource Consent for the Herne Bay Trunk Sewer Project currently being considered by Auckland Cityappointed commissioners.  PN




In the past month I have had the enormous privilege of becoming Co-Leader of the Green Party alongside Hon. Marama Davidson.

I joined this party to be in the company of people who work day in and day out to fight for a healthier environment, a safe and stable climate, a fairer and more equal economy and opportunity for all, and to uphold Te Tiriti o Waitangi, and now I have the privilege of helping lead that movement.

I put my hand up for this role after being asked to by a number of people I admire and respect, and I’m asking New Zealanders across this country to also step into our politics. As my friend and colleague the Hon. Julie Anne Genter often says, genuine climate action is going to take community cooperation at a scale we haven’t seen since war time efforts. Changing this system is going to take all of us. We cannot leave politics to the politicians, or we’ll get what you’ve always got.

As your local MP, I see abundant examples of local solutions that we can scale up to solve problems at a national scale. I see local leadership and homegrown answers to big problems that didn’t wait for top-down permission to make it happen. Whether we recognise that as political or not, the reality is that in frequently having to go around current bureaucracies to make things happen, they role model our communities taking back our power.

In the climate-change-charged Auckland Anniversary flooding and Cyclone Gabrielle last year, it was evident that our current urban infrastructure approach _ that is, paving over surfaces endlessly – only compounds an everaccelerating problem. One local solution is the work of local hero Mark van Kaathoven. His creation of an oasis on the berms running down Freemans Bay not only showcases that sponge-city green infrastructure can be beautiful and enjoyable in its own right, adding to biodiversity, creating a cooler microclimate and bringing back birdsong, but also sequester carbon, reduce city noise that otherwise amplifies across concrete slabs and improve our quality of life. What if we made it possible for local governments nationwide to take the lessons from this flood resilience, streets-beautifying and air-purifying approach? There was a pathway available under the Natural and Built Environments Legislation which empowered a National Policy Statement to do just this, but as the new Government took it to the shredder, we’re back to the drawing board.

Likewise, as our country battles a cost of living crisis, a rampant supermarket duopoly and a mounting waste dilemma, here too we can look for local solutions to the associated problems. This won’t be the first (or last) time I raise the amazing work that has been done by volunteers at Sunday Blessings, led by Danielle Le Gallais. Each Sunday, a group of volunteers comes together to make hot food for increasingly many who’ve fallen on hard times. They feed sometimes hundreds, with the extra food often escaping landfill in donations from local businesses and cafes, while Orange Sky washes laundry and sparks conversation and Koha Apparel provides new clothing for those visiting. It’s a testament to ‘less talk, more do’, and an entry point to support our most vulnerable to connect at a trusted, grassroots level to get sustainable, long-term support.

For the Love of Bees offers another example of a community initiative solving a larger problem that I’m excited to see already inspiring other communities. The Uptown urban farm generates enough kai to feed dozens of local families each week at an affordable price point (reducing reliance on supermarkets), regenerates soil, offers a live classroom in biodiversity and kai sovereignty and is interconnected with other amazing near and far initiatives like Kelmarna Community Farm.

This is how we change our world. From Auckland Central to across Aotearoa, we will transform our politics, our economy and the systems we live within when all of us realise our power to remake the man-made rules of ‘the way things are’, If you want inspiration it’s possible, just look around our neighbourhoods to the leadership that far exceeds anything I’ve ever seen contained within the so-called halls of power.

chloe.swarbrick@parliament.govt.nz www.greens.org.nz/chloe_swarbrick
378 4810, E:
Kia ora Ponsonby! Let’s talk about our community. Get in touch about any local issues or if you need support. I’m here to help and would love to hear from you. chloe.swarbrick@parliament.govt.nz | 09 378 4810 Chlöe Swarbrick MP for Auckland Central Funded by Parliamentary Service. Authorised by Chlöe Swarbrick, Green MP for Auckland Central. 76 Karangahape Rd, Auckland.
Green Party MPs Marama Davidson and Chlöe Swarbrick walk down the halls of Parliament together as Co-Leaders for the first time in March.


This month, we asked C&R Elected Member on the Waitematā Local Board, Sarah Trotman, ONZM, to share two key thoughts on the issue of accessibility to those who are elected to represent us.

Have you felt invited to have your say? Have you felt heard by the Board?

Consultation on Auckland Council’s Long-term Plan 2024 –2034 closes shortly. This consultation is important. However, based on the few residents who attended the Waitematā Local Board #HaveyourSay hearing, residents appear not to have confidence in Auckland Council’s consultation process. Nor do they seem to be confident that their views will be authentically heard, even if they take the time to present their views. This is disappointing and needs to be addressed.

One resident recently commented, “if the regulars, who attend, your Local Board meetings are repeatedly ignored by the Chair, who with City Vision members hold a majority, why would I waste my time coming before you? You don’t even offer me a cup of tea, let alone make it easy to get into the orange coned city.”

It is most certainly time for the entire Board to reflect on how we engage in a more constructive way with our community.

During the Long-Term Plan consultation we focus on:

· The overall direction of the Long-Term Plan The transport plan

· Major investments

· North Harbour Stadium Local Board priorities

· Port land and ‘Changes’ to rates, fees and other charges (‘changes’ should have read ‘increases’).

These are complex long-term issues. Busy, or less informed, residents need an environment where they can comfortably share their views and be supported through the process of providing quality feedback on matters that impact their day to day, and the future state of Auckland.

I have heard concerns from within the community, that the process of coming infront of the Board is at times intimidating and that the boardroom is too uninviting. Community are also concerned that speaking before the Board is limited to only five to 10 minutes. Further, that there is no conversation allowed, the Board members are simply able to ask ‘questions of clarification’. These questions are often cut short if they do not suit the political agenda of the Chair.

One Local Board Business Meeting per month is open, weekly Workshops are not.

On Tuesday 19 March, the Local Board held its monthly Business Meeting. As always, agenda items have already been briefed, and then discussed by the Board at Workshops. These Workshops are held behind closed doors, the public cannot attend Workshops. All briefing papers are marked confidential, so not to be shared outside of the Workshop. It is my opinion that all information should be freely available to our constituents, except when there is a legal, or regulatory, reason for it to be withheld.

It is noted too that the chat function is disabled during the monthly Business Meeting. Therefore, communities and residents who are online cannot share thoughts on matters

before us. Enabling the chat function would provide us with a wider variety of views, particularly ones from those not willing to wait for hours on end to have their five to 10 minute window of opportunity.

There is a lot of hard work to do to rebuild trust and confidence in the Waitematā Local Board. That trust and confidence seems to have significantly diminished since the start of the term when Genevieve Sage ‘crossed the floor’ to secure herself the position of Chair of the Board.

It is evident, from the Letters to the Editor of the last issue of Ponsonby News, that there is still deep upset in the community as a result of Sage continuing to vote with the minority City Vision team.

The place to start building back trust and confidence of our community is Chair Sage having a better understanding of the role of the Chair. Also understanding a key aspect of chairing the meeting is ensuring the will of the meeting flows, rather than the will of the City Vision team who are just one part of the make-up to the Board. (SARAH TROTMAN)  PN

Sarah Trotman can be contacted at sarahtrotman@ outlook.com, or on M: 021 487 583. If writing to her in her capacity as a Local Board Member at sarah.trotman@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

Sarah Trotman, ONZM, of Communities and Residents with two publications, the Ponsonby News and Auckland Council's consultation on the Long-Term Plan. We know which one is a more enjoyable read!

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Clay Works is 10-years-old this year! Started by St Columba in 2015, it has grown from quiet beginnings to being recognised as New Zealand’s largest pottery event, drawing talented potters from around and beyond wider Auckland and buyers from even further away.

Aside from becoming known as the place to buy quality pottery, the proceeds from Clay Works have provided ongoing financial support both for the potters and for St Columba Church’s work in the community. A free weekly community lunch has been provided since 2017, initially for between 15 and 30 people, then with numbers growing steadily as the need arose.

Now the hall buzzes with well over 60 people each week. They come not only for the food, but for conversation, fellowship and a sense of community. The vibe is calm and happy – one of acceptance and inclusion. It is open to all, and supported by many, including the Kiwi Harvest rescue food truck.

When parishioner Rebecca first advocated for the lunches, having recognised the need for food support in the local community, Rev Brent Swann was quick to support the idea. Under his guidance, it and other community-oriented activities have been incorporated into the life of St Columba.

In the past year alone, cooking classes have been held, and the garden has become home to three beehives. Several of the Friday whānau have been learning the art of beekeeping and the Super G’s seniors group learns vicariously from a safe distance. This year, the hives will yield honey for the first time.

As the 10th annual Clay Works approaches, Rev Brent sees this milestone as a cause for grateful celebration. “It is such a wonderful coming together of community and I want to acknowledge those who make it the success and blessing it is – the potters, the buyers from the wider community and the Clay Works team.

"On behalf of St Columba and the community we serve, thank you so much. Nga mihi maioha ki a koutou katoa.”

EVENT: Clay Works Potters’ Market, 10am – 4pm, Friday 10 and Saturday 11 May 2024 @ St Columba, 92 Surrey Crescent, T: 09 376 9119, www.saintcolumbas.org.nz

For April, expect more than normal rain, but average sunshine and warmer than average temperatures.

The first three weeks may be wettest, the third week may be the cloudiest, while the fourth week looks to be the driest with most sunshine.

The barometer should average around 1015mbs. The best weekend for outdoor activities may be 27th/28th.

For fishermen, the second highest tides for the year are on 10h. The best fishing bite-times in the east should be around dusk of 7th-10th, and 22nd-25th. Bite-chances are also good around lunchtime of 1st-2nd and 14th-17th.

For gardeners, pruning is best on 3rd-8th and 30th (waning moon descending), and planting is best on 15th-23rd (waxing moon ascending). For preserving and longer shelf-life, harvest crops or flowers around the neap tides of 3rd and 18th.

Allow 24-hour error for all forecasting. (KEN RING)

For future weather for any date, and the 2024 NZ Weather Almanac, see www.predictweather.com

Opinions expressed in Ponsonby News are not always the opinion of Alchemy Media Limited & Ponsonby News.



They’re lining up to lease our Auckland Port from Dubai to NZ Superfund. Why?

Because there’s obviously a lot of money to be made. Giving this profit to foreign investors is foolhardy when we could use it to reduce our $12.4 Billion debt.

Port Turnaround

By mainly importing, the Port has a low carbon footprint. It has paid council a $20M six monthly dividend. Their ‘Statement of Corporate Intent’ predicts continued profits. This revenuereturning-asset could generate more by building a larger cruise liner wharf, keeping Bledisloe Wharf for expansion and operating the ferries.

Stop the Slush Fund

Our ‘once-in-250-year-flood’ and ongoing unpredictable weather are cause for concern. We can guarantee our longterm financial resilience for a rainy day, only if we resurrect the highly competent ‘Auckland Council Investments Ltd’ to manage our $2.3B council’s assets, instead of Panuku. Those inter-generational investments are our ‘Future Fund’. Selling and cashing up would result in a ‘slush fund’ that would be spent, as happened with the $400M ‘Diversified Asset Fund’ inherited from the ARC.

Enough ‘Future Investment’

Aucklanders are afraid to come into the city they paid to renovate – the Viaduct, Wynyard Quarter and CRL. The ‘City of Sails’ has turned into a ‘city of orange cones’. Time to stop the construction zone and experience the good, bad and the ugly decisions, allowing ratepayers to access and enjoy the city they financed. The ‘Centre City Master Plan’ must go along with Panuku. They are responsible for turning our Civic Centre into a maze and creating a $20M fine trap for AT; narrowing Queen Street, K' Road and arterial roads to single lane causing congestion; and dividing the city in two with the Victoria St Linear Park.

Decrease Debt

Mayor ‘Mr Fix-it’ was voted in to surgically remove the cancer, not the family silver. To cauterize the money hemorrhaging from a broken system that is gorging itself on rates. It’s totally dysfunctional with the wrong upcycled personnel appointed to key positions. The budget’s ‘pay less, get less’ scenario, threatens core services instead of carving up the beast and cutting the waste by restructuring out middle management and dysfunctional CCOs.

Cancel CCOs (requires legislation)

Council-controlled organisations consume $490M and AC $609M in yearly salaries. Why are CEO’s salaries twice the Mayor’s?

· Eke Panuku Development has the worst real estate sales track record, eg, selling ex-AC building on 5000 sqm land for $3M (worth $54M) and Downtown Carpark $133M

less than the counter offer. Panuku alleges “to deliver ‘urban regeneration’, the planning and improvement of neighbourhoods to strengthen communities around thriving town centres.” They’re miserable failures at this ‘social engineering’ as proven by Henderson blue-road-graffiti. Yet the Budget proposes $100M for Panuku’s “strategic development fund to enable faster regeneration of rundown parts of Auckland,” these communities don’t want.

Tātaki Auckland Unlimited claims to “push Auckland towards a bright future, creating world-class major events and supporting Auckland businesses to grow and thrive.” TAU mismanages venues and allows road narrowing and AT’s restricted parking in shopping villages that is detrimental to ‘thriving'. Council departments and other CCOs all run events making TAU redundant.

· Auckland Transport is spending $1.058B on our transport network during next financial year. This is the highest ever annual spend on building infrastructure but these ‘traffic calming’ techniques and cycleways have wasted ratepayers' funds, without maintaining roads and footpaths. The ‘Regional Transport Plan’ will be released.

Stadium Dominos

As Auckland intensifies, all areas need their own amenities. The non-viable waterfront stadium appears to be part of a real estate land-grab by defunding Eden Park. The domino effect, starting with moving cricket from Eden Park to Western Springs, replacing Speedway, including the unnecessary $20M demolition of North Harbour Stadium to sell the land, after TAU ran it into the ground.

Trees Please

Funding Tupuna Maunga Authority to cut down mature trees is counterintuitive to the city’s 'Urban Ngahere Plan’ goal to increase the tree canopy to 30%. The removal of ‘Tree Protection’ has decimated our engendered nature bat population by 70% in 10 years. Treescape was paid $722,461 for Mangere Mountain and $917,800 for Mt Wellington (LGOIMA) for ‘exotic’ tree removal. Stop this bird habitat removal.

Rubbish Decision

Adding recycle bins rather than removing bins from parks and beaches would allow less frequent emptying. Who wants to take bagged dog poo home to their household bins? Consistency issuing the whole of Auckland red top wheelie bins, with larger bins for households over four inhabitants, and weekly collection of smelly food scraps, could reduce collection to fortnightly.

Ratepayers aren’t ‘cash-cows’

The LTP is full of gems like “$171M to achieve positive Māori outcomes.” (GAEL BALDOCK)  PN GaelB@xtra.co.nz

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 51


SPCA’s one-of-a-kind Boutique in Ponsonby is celebrating its second birthday and locals are invited to pop in and pull together a party outfit.

Like many of us, the team at Boutique believes it takes at least a week to celebrate a birthday so from the 15 – 21 April there will be spot prizes instore for customers who donate or purchase items. Dogs are welcome too. How very on trend.

“This community has a made a huge difference over the past couple of years and we’re blown away by the generosity of people who love supporting what we’re doing.

“Don’t miss our soirée on Thursday 18 April, we’ll have complementary bubbles, canapés and late-night shopping, it will be wonderful,” Whitney promises.

“Dogs can enjoy a drink and a bite to eat while you browse our wide range of fashion and accessories.”

Of more than 80 op shops nationwide, Boutique for SPCA is the first to specialise in pre-loved designer and highquality pieces.

“We’re very much at home here in Ponsonby,“ Whitney says sorting through racks abundant with notable labels including Burberry, Stella McCartney, Storm, Michael Kors, Coach, Deadly Ponies, Levi, Ted Baker, Anine Bing, Karen Walker, Kate Sylvester, WORLD and Zambesi.

“There are collectible homewares and vintage items too and it’s all for the love of animals.”

Sales assistant Helen describes it as fashion that saves lives.

“It looks good, feels good, does good… giving a garment another life or buying one that has already had an outing improves the lives of animals in a satisfying sustainable way.”

SPCA is the country’s largest animal welfare charity committed to rehabilitating and re-homing neglected, abused and vulnerable animals.

“The trade at Boutique directly supports that important work,” says Helen.

And just as it seems all puns have been avoided, Whitney grins and takes the cake.

“Everyone is welcome to come celebrate with us; word is hairy styles will be instore.”

Boutique for SPCA is open seven days at 27 Ponsonby Road – near (off-leash) Western Park.  PN


www.facebook.com/boutiqueforspca www.instagram.com/boutiqueforspca



Kia ora, I’m Tim Bray, QSM and I was born in Kaikōura but moved to Tāmaki Makaurau when I was two. I’m the Artistic Director of New Zealand’s largest and oldest theatre company for children – Tim Bray Theatre Company.

How did you get into theatre?

Very early on my late parents created a puppet stage with Mum making papier mâché hand puppets for my younger brother and I. They then enrolled me into Mary Amoore’s Auckland Youth Theatre when I was 13 and continued with drama classes through my teenage years.

How are things going right now?

With a very large professional theatre company under my wing and having got through three years of a global pandemic and now, even with sell-out shows, things are proving to be more challenging in many other ways. We’re a charity and we currently have a Theatre for All appeal seeking donations or for people to become patrons so we can continue to do what we do so well.

Who is your partner? What do they do?

My partner is Bryce. We met at Hero in 2000 when I was performing and he was a volunteer usher. He is a very good massage therapist.

Do you have any pets?

Yes, our SPCA rescue cat, George. Originally called Vann but we couldn’t imagine calling ‘Vann, Vann, Vann’ from the back door.

Your best friend would say of you…

Gosh, you keep busy.

Your mother would say of you…

My late mother told me often how much she loved me and how special I was to her and Dad. Oh, “and you don’t need to bring me flowers each time."

You’ve got a day off, how do you spend it?

If summertime a swim! But otherwise, catching up with family, treat of a meal out, good walk somewhere, sweep the blimmin’ street tree leaves from the courtyard. And there’s always theatre work to be done.


Loyal, honest, big hearted, wear my heart openly.


Chocolate. My one man show, Me and My Vice, finished with me teasing the audience with a king size bar of chocolate and provocatively unwrapping it and beginning to eat it.

Who's your ultimate rock icon?

Kate Bush.

Favourite Actor?

We contract so many great actors in our shows, it would be very unwise for me to choose just one of them.

Secret passion?

Interior design and architecture, particularly the Art Deco period.

What's your secret talent?

Am a whizz at making a pavlova but, to be fair, it’s a very good fail-safe Annabel Langbein recipe.

Where do you spend your holidays?

For many years, my sister and her husband owned land at

Opoutere so that was our annual camping holiday with the whole extended family. Now we keep trying somewhere new.

What's your perfect Sunday?

So, so many ways to enjoy a perfect Sunday but not working is high on the list.

What were you going to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be the next Jacques Cousteau so studied science at school and gained a Bachelor of Science. But my first job out of uni was for Mary Amoore performing in schools and that’s where the ongoing adventure began.

Favourite local cafe?

Honey (opposite Leys Institute).

Favourite local restaurant?

When we want the Ponsonby hubbub, Prego, but otherwise at the moment we quite like Romulus & Remus.

Your best kept Ponsonby/Grey Lynn secret?

When SafeSwim shows they are green, the wee beaches in Herne Bay – sometimes we are the only ones there!

Your desert island distractions?

Yum – desserts. Oh, sorry misread that. A series of good books. I’m a fast reader so can plough through a book a day when I’m at the beach.

The house is on fire and your family is safe, what do you save?

George the cat and, if time, a Graham Kirk painting (complete with Wonder Woman in front) of the outside of the theatre where we started in 1991 – now home to the Basement Theatre.

I'd be lost without my… Glasses or contact lenses.

One thing you have learned about life is...

It goes really fast! I remember Mum turning a significant age and she said how she still felt like the 20-year-old she had been. I was quite dismissive of it but now as I get older, I realise what she was saying.

If you would like to help Tim Bray Theatre Company continue their charitable work for current and future generations, head to: timbray.org.nz/theatre-for-all-appeal



It’s back and it’s bigger and better than before. Play Festival returns to Tuna Mau / Western Park on the first Saturday of April.

Supported by Waitematā Local Board, the event is part of World of Cultures, and encourages people of all ages to learn about a variety of cultures through play.

Fun experiences from 29 different play providers and performers will be set up for children and adults to enjoy throughout the park.

“We’re pleased to see some friendly faces from last year, as well as welcome new ones into the network of providers sharing invaluable cultural stories and traditions with the community through the art of play,” says Waitematā Local Board Chair, Genevieve Sage.

Pop Up Play were a favourite last year and are back again with some new Pasifika games.

“We connect people through play, using cultural games to serve as a vehicle not just for entertainment, but for passing down ancestral knowledge and stories,” says Romero Tagi, director of Pop Up Play.

The Pop Up Play team has staff with heritage from all over the Pacific, including Samoa, Tokelau, Tuvalu, the Cook Islands and New Zealand Māori.

Local social circus group, Circability Trust, is a new addition to this year’s festival.

The group provides services for all ages and all abilities, often working with high needs children. They are also inclusive of all cultures, being aware of how culturally diverse Auckland is and acknowledging Māori and Pasifika heritage in their work.

Play Festival will give some of the communities that Circability work with a chance to come together and demonstrate their skills.

“A lot of these people have social needs. But with their training, they are able to show something off to the wider public,” says creative director of Circability, Thomas Hinz.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for them.”

As well as running a workshop at the main tent, you’ll be able to find Circability throughout the day combining nature play and circus in some of the steeper sections of Tuna Mau / Western Park.

Play Festival will take place 11am-4pm, Saturday 6 April 2024 at Tuna Mau / Western Park, Freemans Bay.

Everyone is welcome, but parking in the area is limited so walking, cycling or using public transport is advised. Bike parking is available.

Visit www.playfestival.co.nz for a full list of play providers attending and other festival information.



The preschool at the Ponsonby Community Centre has been called Ponsy Kids for 25+ years.

The name was cute in the 90s, a play on the name of the area and a way to stand out from the rest.

However, ‘Ponsy’ as a word does have some less than salubrious connotations… yes, ‘poncy’ is spelt differently but the meaning still confers itself when spoken aloud.

We have decided it’s time for a change. We want to emphasise the preschool’s origins of being community based and operated. We have farewelled the Ponsy Kids name, with affection and good memories, and rebranded as Ponsonby Community Preschool.

The advantages to being a community run preschool are huge, and all centred on providing the best care and education to our children.

Because we don’t run the preschool or community centre as a profit-making business, there is no economising to ensure we meet the year end targets for a massive corporate group. Any extra money we have becomes an opportunity to reinvest in improving the physical environs or grow our activities and programming for the community.

The preschool provides very experienced teachers and staff, many of whom have been with the organisation for over 15 years, as well all the best resources and learning experiences available. A full renovation of the playground occurred a few years ago and the top quality, brightly coloured environment is a firm favourite with our children. The indoor spaces are open plan, allowing children of all ages to play and experience together, which is known to be advantageous for socialisation and learning. Our resources are all lovingly cared for, replaced when broken and new toys, books and games are regularly added to the mix.

To celebrate our new name we will be offering 30 hours FREE to all new enrolments of 3-5-year-olds! An extra 10 hours free every week!

If you would like to come for a visit or get more information on Ponsonby Community Preschool, please email us at admin@ponsonbypreschool.org.nz or ring us on T: 09 376 0976.

25+ years of educating and caring for children in our community.
PONSONBY NEWS April 2024 55
admin@ponsonbypreschool org nz 20 Ponsonby Terrace 09 376 0896


Helipads in residential areas are noisy, carbon emitting and dangerous.

I thought I had been around council politics so long that nothing would surprise me. Well, I was wrong about that as I found out at the recent Planning, Environment and Parks committee, but more about that later.

Helicopters and private helipads, the ear-shattering intrusion on neighbours' quiet enjoyment of their homes, has been a growing problem in Auckland for some years now –especially so in this maritime ward.

There have several high-profile cases in recent years in Herne Bay and Westmere where the Herne Bay Residents’ Association and Quiet Sky Waitematā have battled and are still battling resource consents for private helipads.

Three helipad consents are currently extant, and another is nearing conclusion with more rumoured in the pipeline. On Great Barrier there has been a rash of helipad consents over the last two years. Eleven so far, with one property owner being granted two, much to the dismay of neighbours and the Aotea Great Barrier Local Board.

On Waiheke, the situation is even worse with 61 helipads. The regulatory situation is complicated because Waiheke and Barrier planning rules are covered by the Hauraki Gulf Islands District Plan (HGIDP), while on the mainland it’s the Auckland Unitary Plan (AUP).

A further complication: on the islands, the activity class for helipads is ‘restricted discretionary’, whereas in the city it’s ‘non-complying’. In other words, helipad consents are much less regulated on the islands than they are in the city because council planners believed a permissive approach would promote high-end tourism.

Meanwhile, those who wrote the plans are even more influential in today’s Auckland Council and appear deeply invested in the status quo. Moreover, despite on-the-face-ofit ‘stricter’ rules applying in the city, consents are still granted without public notification, much to the frustration of residents and beach users having to put up with the noisy, dangerous, carbon emitting, comings-and-goings of their ‘Rich Lister’ neighbours.

As a response to community proceedings late in 2018, the High Court threw out the controversial Duke helipad-on-aboat shed consent on the grounds of public safety. Judge Christine Gordon declared “… the notification decision is flawed and invalid, it must follow that the consent decision is also deficient and cannot stand.” A stinging criticism which evidently has had little effect on the council.

On the 30 March last year, I got an amendment through the planning committee requesting staff to report on how a plan change prohibiting helipads in residential areas could be included in the budget. Though it was carried by 14 votes to six, it was ‘slow-walked’ by staff. Last November, I decided to tackle the problem by dealing first with Great Barrier where the local board had a firm policy of prohibition in residential (settlement) areas, and advised management accordingly.

After reflection, I decided to postpone any move until after Christmas and just as well. In December, Waitematā Board reverted to its former policy preference of prohibiting helipads

in residential areas and in February, Waiheke Local Board took a similar position. Knowing my intentions, management responded with a memo, a sort of ‘pre-emptive strike’, sent out to councillors and local board members just before Christmas.

This stated there would be no policy review until 2026. This was supported by a consultant’s report which asserted that prohibiting helipads in residential areas would be ‘difficult or impossible'.

This bureaucratic Catch 22 actually backfired; all it did was encourage Waitematā Local Board to double down on prohibited activity and Waiheke Local Board to do the same.

With the three boards and myself unanimously in agreement, on 4 March I wrote to management setting out my notice of motion which, to summarise, called on staff to prioritise plan changes to both the HGIDP and the AUP, to make helipads in residential areas on the islands and the mainland a prohibited activity, with the AUP status quo of ‘non complying’ applying everywhere else.

I asked City Vision councillor Kerrin Leonie to second. This, plus the City Vision presence on the Waitematā Local Board, notably Alex Bonham, led me to assume that City Visionaligned councillors would naturally be in support. I was wrong.

Halfway through the meeting, City Vision’s Cr Julie Fairey handed out a set of amendments which she assured me were constructive. After reading them I found them benign though essentially cosmetic, doing nothing for Waitematā and, in my experience, very little for the islands. However, in the spirit of consensus, I was happy to include them in my motion.

That being agreed, Cr Fairey then announced she would be voting against my motion! In this she was supported by the other left ‘progressives’ except, to their credit, Cr Lotu Fuli and Cr Leonie. Predictably opposed to any change was Mayor Wayne Brown.

Sadly, my motion was lost eight votes to 10 while Cr Fairey’s amendment was carried unanimously. Therefore, essentially, the deeply unpopular status quo remains. This sort of political manoeuvring may be clever, but it does little for the reputation of politics and politicians, especially those purporting to be social and climate justice warriors. Sadly, its politics as usual and yet another Auckland Council fail. (MIKE LEE)  PN




Anand met Meena on his travels from Auckland to India. Meena was a humble and beautiful woman from the village of Dhallafalya in Gujarat.

They fell in love and soon after were married. As they exchanged their vows, they knew they had a shared dream, to pursue their passion of Indian cuisine and to open their own business. In 1993 ‘Oh Calcutta’ was born and today can safely be called a culinary institution of Auckland.

Anand tells me that a visit to Oh Calcutta is, "a journey… an experience.”

And there is no better example of this than what I believe to be their signature dish, Salmon Tikka. The Salmon is farmed from the cold waters of Stewart Island. This gives the fish the perfect texture, colour and taste when combined with the Oh Calcutta ‘secret’ tikka marinade.

We pair the dish with one of my favourite aromatic wines, the 2020 Domaine Muré Orchidées Sauvages Gewurztraminer from Alsace. The vibrancy of the wine delicately entwined with lychees and hints of citrus is sublime.

Both the wine and the restaurant have a strong family ethos. Domain Muré is now running into an incredible 17th generation with Veronique and Thomas Muré the current custodians of the vineyard. Anand and Meena are also now introducing their children to the business. I sit with Elysha, one of their four children. Elysha grew up in the restaurant and,

The World’s Greatest Vineyards

after graduating with a food science degree from Auckland University in 2021, has come to work in the business. She gives a broad smile as she says how much she loves working in the kitchen. Her favourite dish? Prawn Malabari.

Running a business is a labour of love. It takes commitment, toil, nerve, intelligence and slices of luck too. Oh Calcutta and Domain Muré are perfect examples of these ethos. Life’s path is never straight and as wise people impress on us all the time, the goal to happiness and enlightenment is not the end destination, but to enjoy and be aware of the journey itself. As Anand and Meena reflect on their 30 years, they can truly be proud of what they have built together. (PUNEET DHALL)  PN




Domaine Muré 2022 Orchidées Sauvages

Dom Gew


Natural yeast and a slow fermentation, matured on lees

Nat Gew An e not The

This wine offers the characteristic exotic aromas of Gewurztraminer – rose petals, lychee and gingerbread. An elegant, medium-bodied style. The palate is round with notes of tangy and exotic notes of mango & passionfruit. The finish is spicy.

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 57


Kia ora Ponsonby.

Sadly, Easter is done rather early this year. Leys team members have done our best to consume our weight in hot cross buns and sample all we could from the many delicious bakeries and cafés in our fab foodie area (we do admit to going further afield for a few). After all our sweet treats, it is time to head into April and the school holiday with action. Luckily, we have plenty coming up at the library this month.


Wednesday 17 April 10am – 11:30am: We Love Pokémon! Calling all Pokémon lovers. Come along and take part in various Pokémon-themed activities. All you need is your Pokédex.

Wednesday 24 April 10am – 11:30am: Minion Madness

In anticipation of the new cinematic addition to the Minionverse, Leys is celebrating with a Minion-themed morning of robotics, a scavenger hunt and more.

There are also plenty of other school holiday events happening at Grey Lynn, Parnell and Central. You can collect a booklet at the library to find out more, or have a look on OurAuckland.

This April, Waitematā libraries have also teamed up to expand our digital accessibility and education targeted at (but not exclusively for) our older community, including oneoff talks, activities and digital device trainings.

These events are free, all you need to do is pop in to Leys, Grey Lynn, or Parnell Library and have a chat with our librarians to book and/or find out more.

At Leys Institute Little Library, we are offering one-on-one drop-in sessions with our librarians for anyone with questions about their phone, tablet, laptop or our range of free online library services. No booking required, just bring your fully charged device. Come along on Thursday 4 April, 9am – 12 noon or Tuesday 9 April, 9am – 12 noon.

On Thursday 2 May at 6:30pm, we are delighted to have award-winning author, journalist and educator Graham Reid at Leys to talk about ‘The Perils and Pleasures of Being a Reviewer’. Join us for what is sure to be an entertaining evening of stories where an informed opinion may not have always been appreciated.

Please also note that we, like all Auckland libraries, are closed on Thursday 25 April for ANZAC Day, but will resume normal hours at 9am the following day (Friday).

Monday – Friday 9am – 6pm, Saturday 9am – 4pm, Sunday closed.

Chloë – Manager Community Library – Pouārahi, Pātaka Kōrero ā-Hapori.  PN If

you, your friends or family are missing Ponsonby, why not subscribe to New Zealand’s BEST read community magazine? An annual subscription is only $49 and can be posted anywhere in New Zealand. News + Local Politics + Fashion + Style + Celebrity + Eat, Drink + Be Merry + Travel + Living, Thinking + Being + Pets + Future Generation + Sports + Home + Real Estate + Arts + Culture HOMESICK FOR PONSONBY? Visit ponsonbynews.co.nz or email jay@ponsonbynews.co.nz for more information LEYS INSTITUTE LITTLE LIBRARY, 14 Jervois Road,
T: 09 377 0209, aucklandlibraries.govt.nz


As we head into the autumn months, I’d like to take stock of the fantastic work being achieved for Mt Albert, Auckland and across New Zealand by the Coalition Government.

Over the last 100 days, the Government has delivered on

Authorised by Melissa Lee MP, Parliament Buildings, Wellington. M.Lee@Ministers.govt.nz

Whether heading to Coyle Park, Western Springs or visiting Authorised by Melissa Lee, Parliament Buildings, Wellington. Happy Easter Everyone! Please stay safe on the roads this weekend! Melissa Lee National List MP based in Auckland MPLee@parliament.govt.nz melissalee.co.nz mpmelissalee


Once again, I find myself incandescent with rage as another round of fake and flawed consultation kicks off over Auckland’s Long-Term Plan 2024 to 2034.

We mere mortals are supposed to read, digest, analyse and respond to the 775 page document that is refreshed by an army of well remunerated council officers every three years.

As an unpaid community advocate, I can tell you this is an impossible ask and, without waiting for a response, Mayor Wayne Brown and his council cohorts want to sell off the rest of the airport shares, lease the port operation for 35 years and demolish the half built North Harbour Stadium to create an infrastructure 'Slush Fund' that will trickle away without trace.

In Wayne’s world, our rates are set to go up 8% this year, then 7% and surprise, surprise, drop to 3.5% in 2025 in time for the next local body election! Roll up, roll up the council-controlled circus is back in town. Our hope that Mayor Brown wasn’t just another red nose rodeo clown has evaporated.

His intentions to sell off the family silver removes each and every one of us from being shareholders in this large public business. Instead, we will become spectators to a three ring circus. The unicycling bear from Auckland Transport will peddle off with a billion dollars spilling from his battered leather suitcase, eager to spend it on more traffic-calming havoc in our streets.

The performing seal known as Eke Panuku loves to show off, balancing $100 million of our assets on the tip of his shiny nose while flapping his flipper at his developer mates who toss him a smelly sardine in return.

Watercare, the strong man in the show, will pretend to struggle with the weight of water responsibilities, meanwhile plotting to axe four and a half hectares of pristine regenerating native kauri bush in Titirangi in order to build a new filter station which would be better situated in Rosebank Road or industrial New Lynn.

The Tupuna Maunga Authority (TMA) and the defunct Urban Design Office will continue as side show attractions, waiting for funding approval to destroy our built and natural heritage with their ‘expert' advice. Your elected councillors simply need to stop approving funding to end TMA’s intention to axe all exotic trees on every mountain in Tamaki Makaurau.

A funding freeze would stop this quango’s ethnic cleansing of trees and decolonising bird habitats until native species are planted and provide a new food source. Tickets to watch the denuding of exotic trees is a mere $1 million per maunga

(mountain), with a citywide debt of $12.4 billion every million dollars saved helps.

Auckland Facilities, with stool, whip and treats is the Lion Tamer, continuing to maul our parks as contractors ring-bark trees from their ride-on mowers and spray glyphosate everywhere you and your family tread.

Yes, folks, the Supercity Circus is back in town with another long-term plan rolled out by malnourished, tight-rope walking penguins, having successfully transformed itself right under our noses from a family centric business to a huge corporate entity that values profit more than people.

With an insatiable appetite for more revenue, the high-wire acrobats in the accounts department will encourage you to 'Have Your Say' and then disregard your comments as they juggle numbers too unwieldy to hold on to.

The global procurement industry circus train (that Penny Bright warned us about) continues to distort the real cost of pipes, roads and rubbish with mind boggling figures that you and I are supposed to swallow with nary a query. Without enormous public push back via email, the airwaves and social media, our collective interests will fall under the hammer to some slobbering auctioneer crying fire sale, fire sale!

After 27 years of writing submissions, signing petitions, running community campaigns and sitting through mind and bum numbing meetings, I can only hope that there is someone out there with a moral compass, an enlightened economic model and a compassionate heart that finds their way through the crowd of wannabes to become our next mayor, bringing with them at least a dozen loyal colleagues that can stop this 14-year-old supercity circus train in its overheating tracks.

Read all the details for yourself: www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/externalcontentdelivery/ consultations/budgets/long-term-plan-2024-2034/ltp-20242034-consultation-document.pdf

Then have 'Your Say' place a bob each way: https://akhaveyoursay.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/hub-page/ long-term-plan-2024-2034



It’s been a fascinating few weeks in Parliament. If it wasn’t all likely to cause real trauma, it could be amusing. Unfortunately, the Coalition Government’s decisions are going to have very real consequences for New Zealanders.

They have rushed through a repeal of New Zealand’s worldleading smoke free legislation, prioritising the interests of the tobacco lobby. At a time where the Government should be working to combat the harms of both smoking and vaping, this is a major step backwards.

I asked whether the Minister had considered the unintended consequences of pushing our children back to cigarettes given the lack of regulation and received no answer. This is one of the consequences of the Government’s irresponsible use of urgency. Laws are going through a rushed process and people aren’t offered the chance to have a say.

The Government has chosen to prioritise reinstating full interest deductions for residential property at a cost of $2.9 billion over four years, $800 million more than National had calculated during the election campaign. The Treasury stated that these tax cuts for landlords are unlikely to be passed onto renters. This is insulting and shows the Government is in no way committed to supporting most New Zealanders with the cost of living.

Another example of where the coalition's interests lie, is their reduced pay offer to Police. Police have been on the frontlines keeping our communities safe throughout the Covid pandemic and the likes of the Parliament Protest and are now the key to any government's efforts to reduce crime. National campaigned on law and order yet won't front up with a reasonable offer.

I was sad to see, yet again, big business interests continue to dominate the agenda of the Coalition Government. The repeal of the law that would have helped ensure that small businesses and contractors receive payment promptly from large companies worth upwards of $53 million (Business Payment Practices Act 2023, now repealed). This will enable businesses to continue using small businesses as banks and not paying them for three months.

In the same week this law was repealed, analysis from the UK said these practises come at a cost of billions to their economy. The Minister says he will work on a voluntary code of practice, though I am not convinced that big business will do anything that is against their financial interests. The message of the Government needs to be that they support small businesses when they are in a weaker bargaining position.

Outside of Wellington, it has been a busy and emotional few weeks. I thoroughly enjoyed attending the Pasifika Festival and the Sandringham Floral Carpet Festival recently. On 10

March, I hosted a clean up of Pt Chev beach. I was incredibly grateful to the dozens of volunteers that showed up to look after our local environment, including a lovely group of students from Mount Albert Grammar School.

Finally, the passing of my good friend and colleague Efeso Collins has shaken many in Parliament and in our wider communities. It is a terrible loss and my heart goes out to his family. (HELEN WHITE)  PN

As always, please get in touch if there is anything I can do to support you, your community or your business.

helen.white@parliament.govt.nz www.labour.org.nz/HelenWhite

Community Clinics Authorised by Helen White MP, Parliament Buildings, Wellington. With Helen White, MP for Mt Albert /HelenWhiteLabour @helen_white_labour Monthly clinics in your community: First Monday | 2-5pm Sandringham Community Centre First Saturday | 11am-1pm Pt Chev Homestead 92 Pt Chev Road Second Monday | 1-4pm Eden/Albert (St Lukes) CAB Third Monday | 1-3:30pm Grey Lynn/Ponsonby CAB Book a meeting: 09 360 5720 helen.white@parliament.govt.nz


Planting exotic species in the Auckland Domain: A case for harmony with native trees.

The Auckland Domain, one of Auckland’s oldest and largest parks, is a treasure trove of biodiversity and a cherished green space for locals and tourists alike.

As stewards of this natural haven, the Council faces the delicate task of balancing the introduction of exotic species with the preservation of its native flora. While some may fear that planting exotic trees could harm the existing ecosystem, a thoughtful approach can ensure that these new additions complement, rather than threaten, the native trees.

Plans are underway to expand the Domain’s already significant botanical tree collection. The restoration of the Wintergarden buildings in 2023 has allowed for six new trees to be established this year to make up for any minor impact from the works.

The Council’s arborists, in collaboration with ecologists, carefully assessed the ecological impact of each exotic species considered for planting. They have selected trees that are not invasive, do not out-compete native species for resources, and are unlikely to spread uncontrollably.

In the case of the Domain, the six new exotic species chosen, four oak varieties – Quercus faginea (Portuguese oak), Quercus ilex (Holm oak), Quercus suber (Cork oak), Quercus afares (African oak) and two araucaria – Araucaria luxurians (Coast Araucaria) and Araucaria angustifolia (Paraná pine) will thrive in the slightly hotter temperatures, making them more resilient against projected temperature increases.

These exotics will also perform better than native species at the specific planting site close to the Wintergarden and band rotunda. Interestingly, araucaria is the same family as the kauri and has important heritage connections with several

commemorative plantings which have performed well in the Domain, so an added heritage linkage.

Once established, these new trees will benefit the Auckland Domain's ecosystem as exotic trees can serve as companion plants, providing shelter and support to native species. For example, the broad canopy of a well-placed exotic tree can create a microclimate that promotes the growth of understory native plants, enhancing overall biodiversity.

Council's approach to planting exotic species is guided by a deep respect for the unique biodiversity that makes up that of our city and country. Arborist advice to the Domain Committee recognises and reflects that the Auckland Domain is part of a larger ecosystem and that maintaining a balance between exotic and native species is crucial for its long-term health.

Heritage protection of the Auckland Domain and its governing framework, mean the chance to plant new specimen trees within Auckland’s oldest park is rare. Therefore, the thoughtful and responsible approach to enhance the park's ecological diversity and aesthetic appeal without harming native trees is welcomed.

By carefully selecting and managing exotic species, the Council can ensure that the Auckland Domain remains a vibrant and sustainable green space for generations to come. Other oak varieties already in the Domain are considered historically significant and in 100 years from now, these new exotic species will too. (DESLEY SIMPSON)  PN Chair of the Domain Committee and Deputy Mayor of Auckland




Hands up if you like doing the washing. Anyone?

For most of us, the constant cycle of sorting, washing, drying, ironing, folding, sorting again and putting away can certainly get a little draining. But thankfully, there’s some good news for anyone who doesn’t live to launder.

Less laundry = a healthier planet

The average Kiwi uses about 36 litres per day to wash their clothes.* Sounds like a pretty good reason to put your feet up and skip laundry day every now and again. It also makes sense to make sure you have a full load before you push go. Check your manufacturer’s instructions to work out the perfect load size for your machine.

Clothes don’t need to be washed every time they’re worn

In fact, they’d prefer not to be. Your favourite trousers, skirts, sweaters and tees will last a lot longer if you don’t wash them each time you wear them. And natural fabrics like wool, cotton and silk can often be freshened up with a good airing, rather than washing them regularly.

You only need to wash once if you wash well

Choosing high performance products that do less harm to the environment is the key to making sure your laundry takes it

easy on both you and the planet. Look for concentrated, plantbased formulations with biodegradable ingredients, that get great results from less product and reduce the need to pretreat or re-launder. And remember that pre-dosed capsules are a great way to make sure you’re using the perfect amount of product to get the job done.

Trust the experts

Recently, Consumer Magazine tested all of the market leading laundry detergents that are making eco claims. Ecostore’s laundry range “cleaned up”, performing overall highest and consistently in the top three.

Ultra Power, ecostore’s most powerful, plant-based laundry powder with PlantActive™ enzymes, came out tops receiving the “Best Eco Laundry Detergent in NZ” rating.

Ecostore UItra Power Laundry Powder effectively removes odour and leaves clothes smelling fresh. Its renewable enzymes boost stain fighting power by 20%* ‒ perfect for stubborn stains like wine, baby food, and chocolate.


ECOSTORE, 1 Scotland Street, Freemans Bay, T: 09 360 8477, www.ecostore.co.nz

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The enabling work is well underway for the development of the site at 254 Ponsonby Road (next door to Dizengoff Cafe) from being a liquor outlet to becoming a beautiful civic space for everyone to access and enjoy.

At the time of writing, the main focus of the Community-Led Design group (CLDG) is the activation of the soon-to-beerected site hoarding, via a temporary artwork. Our Colab with ’Places for Good’ where Boopsie Maran has worked in conjunction with three local schools: Ponsonby Primary School - Te Kura O Te Rimu Tahi, Ponsonby Intermediate School, and St Mary's College, has informed a magnificent artwork, created by Ross Liew working under his artist name, Oscar Low.

The artwork was developed in response to ideas collected and nominated by pupils of the schools. It features the use of native plants, pollinating insects and vegetables, creating an abstract composition that spans the 30-metre length of the hoarding. Students will reconnect with the mural through facilitated workshops that explore the imagery, design, as well as the techniques used in making the final artwork, and by creating personal artwork and collaborative work in the schools.

All things going to plan, the mural may be completed on-site by the time this update goes to publication. EXCITING!

Another focus of the CLDG has been the time restrictions for and the placement of the new car-parking spaces enabled by the civic space development. With O’Neill Street being a quiet, one-way and extremely narrow residential street, the preference of the CLDG is to have the short-term car parks located on Ponsonby Road. This would ensure access

for deliveries, spontaneous purchases, as well as easy and accessible drop-off spaces for activation events at the new civic space. It avoids requiring all the short-term parking users to travel down the narrow, residential O’Neill Street.

The short-term parking being sited on Ponsonby Road is a logical and safe option. The car parking on O’Neill Street can then be available for longer-term parking. This would reduce unnecessary through traffic down O’Neill Street whilst not reducing any parking amenities.

LOVELY! A win-win solution.

And it is with great delight that the CLDG can advise that mana whenua will bless the site with karakia before the start of the civic space construction. Thus far, the work undertaken on-site has been ‘enabling work’ in preparation for main works to start.

We are finally and happily almost ready to start the construction of the new civic space.

For more information or to contact the CLDG, visit the website: 254ponsonbyrd.org.nz or see our Facebook pages: Ponsonby Park, or 254 Ponsonby Road.




Economics, Politics and You

At the March meeting of Ponsonby U3A, members were riveted by Shamubeel Eaqub’s presentation.

For him, economics is not about money but about people. We are living through extraordinary volatility in economics, politics and society, and Shamubeel outlined where we are at, how we got here and how it might affect our future.

Author, media commentator and a thought-leading public speaker, Shamubeel Eaqub has two decades of experience as an economist in Wellington, Melbourne and Auckland.

Currently, he balances a portfolio of consulting, public speaking, governance and family duties. He holds a BCom with Honours in Economics from Lincoln University and is also a Chartered Financial Analyst.

Life for the privileged in New Zealand is excellent, but for others it is not and to explain why, Shamubeel explored some major themes. The concept of ‘more’ is important. More and more, we are experiencing constant change. Climate changes for example have become unpredictable and extreme events. Once unusual, they are now happening all the time.

‘Short termism’ is another major theme. We respond well to catastrophic events but with no durable solutions. Focusing on mitigation, we write more emergency legislation each time and do ‘just enough’. Incredibly, we still do not have a pandemic plan. Insurance is becoming out of reach for many people.

Politics is no different. We are governed by short-termism so that there is no need for long-term solutions. Undoing what was done by a previous government is the modus operandi. Gone are the days of a bipartisan approach.

There are fault lines in our society. The welfare state worked well up to a point. We have become prosperous in aggregate, but it has not been shared. Economic growth should mean people are better off but if you were born after 1985, you are going to earn less. The idea of children doing better than their parents is no longer valid for most people. In 1991, 75% of the population owned homes. Now it is at its lowest level ever.

We are running out of young people to work and pay taxes and yet we expect universal superannuation, health and education without having saved for such things. This opens us up to intergenerational warfare.

Politicians are not to blame. Politicians respond to the demands of constituents. Shamubeel’s fundamental diagnosis

is that something is wrong with us. We have lost our humanity. Our social and community engagement has frayed so that we are fragmented and do not talk about important substantive issues. We do not trust each other because to take a stand might result in ridicule, harassment and cancellation, particularly on social media.

What we need is good, long-term, evidence-based policies that endure over time and arise out of consensus. To achieve consensus, we need to be clear about our own values, to share them and to align them with a vision for the future. A future not for us because it is too late but for our great grandchildren. It is that vision that must guide us.

Michael Adams was the ten-minute speaker. Acknowledging International Women’s Day, he displayed photos of Jane Roe and Taylor Swift.

Contending that both women could influence the outcome of the next presidential election, he explored his topic, 'Do Judges Make Law?' Swift has been encouraging the disinterested to enrol and the Roe v Wade lawsuit in 1973 famously led to the Supreme Court making a rule on abortion rights, a decision which was reversed again in 2022.

Michael drew a parallel with the New Zealand case of Smith v Fonterra, 2024. Smith is suing Fonterra for their emissions on his own behalf, thereby challenging public nuisance law. He is also acting on behalf of whenua and hence tikanga which the Supreme Court contends is the first law of New Zealand. The case illustrates that courts develop and alter law.

Ponsonby U3A welcomes new members and visitors. There is a meeting every month which features top-notch speakers from all walks of life. Members can join over 30 special interest groups where new friendships are made. If you are interested in attending, please call President Ian Smith on M: 021 130 2330. (CHRISTINE HART)  PN

NEXT MEETING: Friday 12 April 2024

GUEST SPEAKER: Julie Timmins, Child Poverty: Why Do We Tolerate This?

VENUE: Herne Bay Petanque Club, Salisbury Reserve, Salisbury Street, Herne Bay

ENQUIRIES: Ian Smith, President, Ponsonby U3A. M: 021 130 2330, www.u3a.nz

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 65
Shamubeel Eaqub



Peggy and Thomas had been in a relationship for several years.

Peggy had three children from an earlier marriage and they had one child together. For the first few years, they kept their assets separate and then when they decided that this was going to be forever, they agreed to pool their assets and buy a home together. That extended to eventually a bach in Mangawhai as well.

Peggy was CFO in a large company based in the CBD. When Peggy and Thomas purchased their bach, their lawyer told them it would be a good idea to think about putting their assets into a trust. He said that because of Peggy’s quasi director role and the fact that she was potentially an officer of the company for Health and Safety purposes, it was wise to ensure that their assets would be protected in a trust. Even though Peggy had more cash to put into the trust assets, and children from a previous relationship, the lawyer said that just one trust between the two of them would be fine. He said that they didn’t need to over complicate things.

He also went on to say that the cash going into the trust to purchase the home and bach should be lent to the trust. He said that while we no longer had gift duty in New Zealand, it was best to be conservative and leave the amounts going into the trust owed to each of Peggy and Thomas. He said that this would mean if they separated, they would be able to get their original amounts out of the trust. He was also not a big fan of gifting.

Thomas had a nagging thought at the back of his mind that this didn’t seem to be quite right. He wondered whether he should go and get his own independent advice but didn’t say anything as he really wanted to show unity with Peggy. But he did remember some friends talking about this and saying sometimes with blended families one big joint trust was not always a good way to go.

He also wondered about whether he and Peggy needed to do new wills, but the lawyer didn’t say anything so he didn’t raise it. Thomas knew that he and Peggy would be marrying soon anyway, and he thought that would change things when they were husband and wife.

Once the estate planning exercise was completed, Thomas was owed $250,000 by the trust, being the equity that he had brought to the relationship and Peggy was owed $1,050,000.

Their wills remained the same and said that if one of them died, the other would receive all the assets and then once they both died, Peggy’s children and their joint child would share in all the assets. They had also done a memorandum of wishes advising the trustees that all assets would be held until they both died and then distributed to all the children equally.

Sadly, not long after the trust was established and after Peggy and Thomas had married, Peggy had a massive heart attack. She was on life support for three days and then died. Thomas was devastated but felt a sense of relief that they had addressed their asset planning position before they had got married.

Thomas went to see the lawyer that he and Peggy had gone to, who was a bit blasé about the whole thing. One of his friends recommended he go and see a lawyer that specialised in asset planning and trusts.

When Thomas went to see the lawyer, he was horrified to find that when he and Peggy married, by law, their wills become null and void. This meant that Peggy’s will was invalid and her estate would be governed by the Administration Act.

Thomas was relieved for a moment because all their assets were in the trust, until he remembered that the trust still owed Peggy $1,050,000 because the previous lawyer didn’t agree with gifting. Under the Administration Act this meant that Thomas would be assigned $150,000 of the debt owed by the trust to Peggy as well as 1/3 of the balance and the remaining 2/3 ($600,000) would be owed to Peggy’s children who could demand payment of the debt.

This would mean that the trust would need to sell the bach to pay out Peggy’s children and pay tax on the increase in value given the bright-line test rules. This was far from the outcome Thomas and Peggy had envisaged when they first went to the lawyer for advice.

It is so important to seek specialist asset planning advice. Often people don’t think that their circumstances are complicated, but there may be legal twists and turns that you don’t think of that a specialist will be able to help you navigate.

DAVENPORTS LAW, 331 Rosedale Road, Level 1, Building 2, Albany, T: 09 883 3284, www.davenportslaw.co.nz

Asset Protection. Considering Everything Together.

The protection of assets that we have worked so hard to acquire is an important consideration for most people. Trusts provide protection of those invaluable assets, which allow a person to hold property and assets on behalf of another - for the good of the beneficiaries.

It is just as important to ensure that other forms of asset structuring are up to date and considered in relation to your trusts structure. These include your will and enduring powers of attorney.

Contact Tammy McLeod or one of the Trust Team for specialist asset structuring and planning advice.



Fresh from the awesome success of its revitalised festival in March – beautiful weather, 3000 visitors, live music, food and workshops – Kelmarna Community Farm is focusing on its core activities and the year ahead.

Site and Community Manager Adrian Roche has been part of the Kelmarna Farm community for 20 years, first gardening as a volunteer in the 1990s and then working as a mental health worker in the gardens. Now, he spends his days harvesting, taking care of the animals, maintaining the food forest and supporting the therapeutic gardeners.

When the garden was first set up in 1981, the connection between being in nature, belonging to a community and improved mental health was not as well researched as today, but Kelmarna has always been a place with both social and environmental goals.

"The sustainability challenge is as much about people as about the environment. We have always supported people who have mental health issues and our therapeutic gardeners are an integral part of Kelmarna today,” says Adrian.

Horticultural therapy is an established form of ‘care farming’ – defined as the therapeutic use of farming practices for individuals with a defined need. The outdoor, practical and caregiving aspects of gardening, especially in a community context, have consistently been shown to be an effective therapy for a wide range of mental health conditions.

At Kelmarna, therapeutic gardeners not only learn about organic food growing, they engage in many farm activities as well as have the chance to look after their own plot. This allows them to take responsibility for care of their plants, observe natural processes through the seasons and take home the produce they grow.

As Community Manager, Adrian is also very much about building good relationships with the neighbours as well as the wider community. "The community is where you live. There is something very special about that which I like. And being a good neighbour is key."

Part of the community ethos is the ‘open door’ policy of Kelmarna. It is a beautiful, welcoming space for everyone to enjoy, seven days a week. People are encouraged to pop in, wander the grounds and enjoy the peaceful environment. There are chickens, a large market garden, food forest, worm farms, beehives, compost making, native trees, orchard, sheep and more.

Produce from the market garden is for sale at the on-site shop (open Wednesdays 10am – 4pm and Saturdays 9am – 12 noon) as well as via a weekly veggie box subscription also known as Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). CSA is a partnership-based farming model where community members and farmers work together to grow and share food.

While the focus may have shifted and evolved over the past 43 years, the core values of Kelmarna remain the same. Adrian: "At Kelmarna we want to show that a small-scale regenerative food system like this can feed the world. That it makes the environment and people in it better and that being a good member of the community means supporting some of the most vulnerable people in our society."

For more information visit: www.kelmarna.co.nz


With the shifting of seasons, our kitchen team is excited to be serving up a freshly updated menu.

Picture succulent octopus, delicately prepared to crispy perfection, tantalising the taste buds with vibrant bursts of citrus and hints of spice. There’s an assortment of vibrant vegetable dishes, showcasing the bounty of the season in every bite.

For those with a penchant for indulgence, this dish promises an unforgettable finale to your dining experience. Indulge in the pleasure of our Dark Chocolate Brownie, luxuriously adorned with a decadent crown of Quick Brown Fox liqueur and a velvety white chocolate foam.

Our wine list has undergone a seasonal change, curated to perfectly complement the diverse flavors of our new menu offerings. Our cocktail selection boasts a delightful array, both classic favourites and innovative creations, ensuring there's something to satisfy every palate.

While we embrace the new and exciting additions, rest assured that the timeless favourites you've come to love over the years remain a cherished part of our menu.


Convivially yours, the Dida's Wine Lounge encourages leisurely engagements with the comprehensive wine list and the ever-changing, always-innovative food menu. The small-plates style cuisine and the superb skills of our talented culinary team, who work hard to pair perfect morsels with the multiple by-the-glass options of local and imported and hardto-find wines.

Open Tuesday-Saturday 3pm-10pm (AROHA JAKICEVICH)  PN

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 69 EAT, DRINK + BE MERRY DIDAS WINE LOUNGE, 60 Jervois Road, T: 09 376 2813, www.didaswinelounge.co.nz
Discover new exquisite flavours at Come along to your local and experience our delicious new menu crafted for autumn and winter!


The French Café reopens in new space alongside Sid Sahrawat’s new venture, Anise.

Meanwhile, The French Café has moved to a dining room on the opposite side of the courtyard at the Symonds Street premises.

The opening of Anise adds versatility to what is now a mini dining precinct, housing the two restaurants wrapped around a gorgeous courtyard reminiscent of an old French quarter, complete with a fireplace, herb garden and al fresco dining.

A brand new concept for the Sahrawats, Anise is a casual, 70-seat, modern pan-Asian eatery with a menu curated by executive chef Sid and head chef Tommy Hope.

The restaurant has a reception and bar area, as well as two dining areas – the front room and back dining room, the latter overlooking the gorgeous internal courtyard.

A wall in the front dining room greets guests with a Japanese inspired decal which depicts cherry blossoms from the Meguro riverside in Tokyo. New mahogany-finished tables, plants and dusky pink cushions complete the transformation of the rooms.

Sid is a big fan of modern Asian cuisine, having started his chef career working in a pan-Asian restaurant in Oman. He says he’s had great fun testing dishes on the family during the summer break and working with head chef Tommy and the team on this menu.

The a la carte menu will change with the seasons, is designed for sharing and is divided into snacks, entrées, mains and dessert, offering up the chefs’ take on modern Asian cuisine with glimpses of flavours from Japan, Thailand, Malaysia, Korea, Cambodia and China.

For those who prefer to 'Trust the Chef', a set menu is available which includes a selection of dishes from each of the aforementioned categories – all designed to share.

Sid says he has wanted to put more Asian flavours on the table for a while now.

“While you may have often seen Asian influences on my menus, Anise gives me the opportunity to really dive into and showcase bold flavours of Asian cuisines from Indonesian to Cantonese, Thai to Japanese,” he says.

“Our kitchen team has always been diverse, and the Anise menu will be a true collaboration of different cultures.”

Guests are invited to Indulge in Anise's array of beverages, featuring an artfully crafted cocktail list by bar manager, Rob Chacon. Infused with fresh, tropical and Asian ingredients, these cocktails are thoughtfully designed to complement the diverse culinary offering.

The wine selection, curated by sommelier and restaurant manager Aleksandr (Alex) Shchepetkin, is a journey through the modern wine movement highlighting exquisite offerings from countries such as Japan, Syria, Lebanon and China.

Anise is open Tuesday to Saturday for dinner and lunch on Saturdays. For more information and to view the sample menu, see anise.co.nz or email info@anise.co.nz

The French Café is open Thursday to Saturday for dinner. For more information, see thefrenchcafe.co.nz All diets can be catered for as long as they are advised in advance at the time of booking.

Anise and The French Café are just two of the four restaurants in Sid and Chand Sahrawat’s impressive stable of Auckland establishments – they also own and operate modern Indian restaurant Cassia at SkyCity and a tandoor-inspired bar and restaurant, KOL, in Ponsonby.

Head Chef Tommy Hope with Executive Chef Sid Sahrawat

Come and visit us in our new intimate 35 seat dining room

Dinner: Thursday to Saturday

Available for private functions Tuesday & Wednesday

210 SYMONDS STREET T: 09 377 1911



- Gusto Italiano


When you dine with us, the focus is on freshly prepared classic dishes, featuring an excellent range of pasta, seafood, meats and our pizza classics.

We also offer our pasta dishes to takeaway, phone for details or check our website for the menu.

263 PONSONBY RD, THREE LAMPS, 09 361 1556


Photography: Babiche Marten

New Autumn hours

Open 4pm till late Wednesday to Sunday

Pop in for Drinks and Snacks, Walk-ins Welcome

23 Ponsonby Road T: 021 379 700 kolauckland.co.nz

Modern Asian Eatery

Dinner: Tuesday to Saturday | Lunch: Saturday

210 SYMONDS STREET | T: 09 377 1911 | anise.co.nz

Email: info@anise.co.nz | Instagram: @anise_auckland

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 71
Photography: Babiche Marten Photography: Babiche Martens



As I write, the Aotearoa/New Zealand grape harvest is underway.

The vines are a wee bit grumpy after the storms and floods of 2023, and in the Auckland region they are grudgingly producing good quality fruit, but generally smaller crops just to make a hissy statement about ‘weather events’ and bad treatment by Mother Nature. Today, I was in the Kumeu wine region, where chardonnay had just been picked and crushed, and was happily fermenting in French oak barrels and bubbling away through vapour locks at Kumeu River Winery. The day before, I was in Matakana where Heron’s Flight had a crop of gorgeous sangiovese grapes looking voluptuous and ripe, ready for harvest.

In short, it looks like a good vintage but with smaller volumes being produced. Anyway, here’s a diverse lineup of wines this month from California, Bay of Islands, Hawkes Bay, Spain and Italy.

Twenty Acres Chardonnay Clarksburg California 2021 - $34

Big ‘n’ bold California style chardonnay from Bogle Family Vineyards. Bursting with vanilla, toasty oak, butterscotch, gingernut, roast peach, bourbon and ripe mandarin. Very lengthy, dry resiny finish. If you’re a fan of the big, buttery, oaky USA chardonnays, then this one ticks all the boxes.

Available: Dhall & Nash winecentral.co.nz

144 Islands Marnie Manon Bay of Islands NZ 2023 - $45

From the Far North, an elegant blend of classic Rhone valley white grapes: marsanne, rousanne, vermentino, viognier and muscat à petit grains. Dry, elegant, crisp and floral. With jasmine, honeysuckle, beeswax and frangipane tart.

Available: Dhall & Nash

Pares Balta Indegena Blanc Penedes Spain (organic) 2022 - $42

100% garnacha (aka grenache) grown organically and biodynamically in vineyards in the Penedès. Bone dry, lean and crisp, with tannic grip and spice from ageing in a mixture of new and old French barrels. Gooseberry, green bell pepper and herbal thyme. Available: Dhall & Nash

De La Terre Syrah Hawkes Bay 2021 - $39

Grunty and savoury at 14% ABV. Flavours of black cherry, black currant, dark berry fruits, black olive, dark chocolate, leather and Cuban cigar. Very much on the spicy/savoury spectrum rather than dark and fruity. Available: Dhall & Nash blackmarket.co.nz

Pelissero Dolcetto d’Alba Munfrina Italy DOC 2019 - $35 Ripe and generous. 13% ABV but hits the palate like a heftier number. A big wine with grippy tannins but matched with black cherry, cassis, acidity and a typical hint of bitterness on the back palate. The name derives from the old owner, a lady from Monferrato, who laboriously and diligently worked the land. Available: Dhall & Nash blackmarket.co.nz

Pares Balta Indegena Penedes Spain (organic) 2022 - $42

Very approachable. Again 100% garnacha, but this time as a true red wine that has fermented on the skins for a number of weeks rather than the ‘blanc’ as above which was directly pressed at harvest. Floral hints of pot pourri on the nose. Dark chocolate, cassis, baking spices, black berry fruits. Medium tannins and a long, dry finish. Available: Dhall & Nash (PHIL PARKER)  PN

FINE WINE & FOOD TOURS E: phil.parker@xtra.co.nz www.finewinetours.co.nz
, phil.parker@xtra.co.nz
· Boutique tours to Waiheke Island & Kumeu · Bespoke Fun Wine
by arrangement
Your host,
Parker, wine writer


Today, the culinary world is celebrating the much anticipated unveiling of France’s Michelin restaurant stars.

Chef Nick Honeyman, of Auckland’s Paris Butter fame, is among this year's recipients for restaurant Le Petit Léon.

Situated in the heart of Saint-Léon-sur-Vézère in the South of France, Le Petit Léon is one of 52 eateries in France that has been awarded a prestigious Michelin star this year, the first for Honeyman and his team.

Honeyman says: “A Michelin star is one of the most prestigious honours a restaurant can receive. While I pride myself on cooking for people, not praise, there’s no denying it’s an accolade that many chefs and restaurant owners only dream of, and myself, and the rest of the team at Le Petit Léon, are incredibly honoured and humbled to be recognised.”

Nick, who was born in South Africa, is considered one of Aotearoa's top chefs having worked in some of of Auckland’s most notable eateries including The French Cafe, Dallows, Cru and Everybody’s Izakaya before opening the Three Hat* award-winning restaurant Paris Butter in 2016.

Together with his wife Sina, a sommelier, Nick took over Le Petit Léon in 2015, having originally worked there alongside the original owner in his youth. Situated in a 300-year-old farm house, under Nick’s vision and guidance, Le Petit Léon offers a menu that focuses on using local seasonal produce to create refined classic cuisine.

*In the Southern Hemisphere, the Michelin rating system is not used. Instead the ‘hats’ system serves as a benchmark of culinary excellence.

PARIS BUTTER, 166 Jervois Road, T: 09 376 5597, www.parisbutter.co.nz

Nick & Sina Honeyman


Tricia Reade was delighted to learn that she was the lucky winner of the Ponsonby News competition to mark National Farmers Markets Week.

On a Sunday last month, Tricia and her daughter, Kirsten Morrell, visited the market to collect her prize of market vouchers and to spend some of her winnings.

Kirsten is back in Auckland working on her new up and coming album, ‘Morrellium', as well as supporting her mum who is recovering from a recent hip operation.

It’s nice to see this prize go to an active member of our local community.

Tricia is the chair of TAPAC, chair of The Friends of Symonds Street Cemetery, on the board of the Ponsonby Community Centre, and was previously a Waitematā Local Board member.



Augie Macabontoc sells his locally grown produce at Grey Lynn Farmers Market on Sunday mornings, beside the colourful salsa truck.

Tell me about your early life?

I grew up in the Philippines and I still have strong connections to friends and family back home. I worked as a registered nurse when I graduated from university and went on to work for a health insurance company. That’s where I met Seychelle.

How long ago was that?

We’ve been together 13 years and have an eight-year-old daughter who was 'made-in-China'.


Seychelle and I worked in an expat hospital in Shanghai for several years before returning to the Philippines and looking at other places we might live – nurses are poorly paid at home.

Did you work as a nurse when you came to New Zealand?

Eventually – but my first job was as a strawberry picker while Seychelle studied healthcare management.

This all seems different from your current farming life. We were lucky to be living in a nice place in Riverhead when Covid came and lockdowns came. Working from home, I looked out over the spacious paddocks and started talking to family back in the Philippines about their farming challenges.

We started sending money to help them with their ginger farm and when they had a good harvest year, we talked to our landlord about farming on his land. He is very supportive and has helped us to get established, even lending us a tractor. And I love how our neighbours are very open, giving helpful advice – Riverhead is a very supportive community.

How does your family influence your farming?

Farming has brought us closer together. We regularly have

long-distance discussions about the farming challenges we face. Currently, my father is visiting for a few months to help us out and provide some guidance.

Are you certified organic?

We closely follow the philosophy of organic farming but becoming certified is out of reach for us at the moment. We’ve recently expanded to five to six acres of land so that we can rotate the crops and avoid overusing the land.

What have you been growing?

We started with some basic items like onions, cabbages and a few carrots. Now, we have expanded our range significantly. With winter approaching, we will be focussing more on brassicas like broccoli and cauliflower, as well as beetroot, kale and the end of the ginger and garlic crops. We are taking a lead from what our customers ask for and the feedback they give us.

How do markets feature in your business?

We tried several markets before someone recommended Grey Lynn. It was a real turning point because the regular customers at Grey Lynn come rain or shine. It is a joy to see the same faces every week and know that they are keen to support our business. And we love the support from other stallholders.

Do you get any down time?

Not much – we are working most days. The last time we managed to have a holiday was a fun camping trip with friends. We fished, swam, played and cooked – I’m hoping that we can do a bit more of that in future.  PN


Sunday mornings at the Grey Lynn Community Centre 510 Richmond Road


Our new publication that starts just after Easter is all about Italian wine.

A country synonymous with great food, a multitude of grape varieties and lots of hand waving (it is the Italian way). There are tastings in store every Friday and Saturday through April and May. A great way to learn more and taste the wines on promotions. Here is a quick overview to get you all set to explore Italian wine.

Firstly, Classifications – in a similar style to the French, the Italian classifications can be broken into:

Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC) – similar to the AOC, wines from the specific area with criteria around the production.

· Denominazione di Origine Controllata et Garantita (DOCG – DOC with a G, a quality indicator) – the next level up.

· Indicazione Geografica Tipica (IGT) – similar to Vin de Pays in France, a quality level that is often used for top end wines that for some reason don’t meet the DOC or DOCG criteria.

Vino d'Italia, what sits below IGT and those that break the rules fit here too. Let me clarify that a little. There are many high flying super premium wines that are made outside the rules. So, they will be labelled Vino d’Italia.

Northern Italy

There are four regions in the north including the region of Piedmont. Home to the Nebbiolo grape variety which is what is used to make Barolo and Barbaresco. Nebbiolo is a great grape for those who love pinot noir – from a growing point of view it has similar characters, the final wine also

shares similarities. Top producers in the region include, Gaja, Fontanafredda, Marchesi di Gresy, Gianni Gagliaro, Tenutto Cuco and Damilano.

Northeast Italy

The main region here is Vento, home to Soave, Valpolicella and Amarone. Soave is a light fragrant white wine best drunk young and cold. Valpolicella is fruity red wine, best with pizza and pasta. Amarone is made from air-dried grapes, a concentrated wine that rewards ageing. If Amarone is a little rich for your wallet, Passiemento is made in a similar way, with a smaller percentage of air-dried grapes retaining a bit more of the primary fruit characters and Ripasso which is made by passing the red wine over the dried grape skins used to make Amarone. Look out for Santa Margherita and Pasqua – who make the three delicious wines, Ripasso, Passiemento and Amarone.

Central Italy

Home to the region of Tuscany, wines produced here include Chianti from the Sangiovese grape variety. There are varying levels of quality – Chianti, Chianti Classico and Chianti Classico Superiore. All a step up from each other. Look out for Cecchi and Villa Cerna and at the top end the wines from Biondi Santi. A producer that is interlinked with the history of the region and whose wines simply make time stand still.

Southern Italy

There’s significant volume produced in the south of Italy. An area not to be overlooked, it is not all about volume, there’s incredible quality in the south. Look out for quality value for money producers like Rivera and Illuminati.



GLENGARRY.CO.NZ | P: 0800 733 505 | E: SALES@GLENGARRY.CO.NZ Discover NZ's finest selection of Italian wines at Glengarry! Join us at any of our stores all month long, every Friday & Saturday DISCOVER



And so here we are again, on the most beautiful ship in the world, joining a passenger list of some 1900 other excited passengers here to enjoy the amazing privilege of discovering the world by ship.

Travelling down the coast of New Zealand, we sailed through a calm blue ocean, a portent to those long sea days expected ahead of us, but first we will dock in Lyttelton, the port for Christchurch.

After the devastation of the 2011 earthquake, the city of Christchurch has slowly begun to awaken and while the destroyed buildings are still being cleared, some interesting new architecture is growing up out of the numerous carparks that have since proliferated on the streets.

Once berthed, the first stop for us off the ship's shuttle was the Memorial Wall. A beautiful white Carrera marble structure that runs alongside the Avon River that flows through the city. The calm, elegant structure reflects the echoing tranquillity of the lazy brook, belying the tragic story written on it of that fateful day in February 2011, but my main aim today was to see the 9/11 memorial.

A number of years ago, the Firefighters of New York had sent to Christchurch five girders that had been recovered from Ground Zero as a tribute to the First Responders who lost their lives that day. It is also a tribute to others everywhere who put their own lives at risk on our behalf.

I had seen the original elegant but fated World Trade Towers standing and this was to be a poignant visit – to see actual girders from the 102nd floor that had fallen the length of the building in a explosive force that pierced through the ground and into the subway below.

We meandered along the river looking at the wonderful sculpture everywhere, avoiding the constant trams running along the tracks and admiring the new buildings and diggers still clearing rubble, until we found a quiet part of the river at the beginning of the Firefighters Reserve and where, on the banks, stood the memorial.

Steel contorted, buckled and gnarled, the once flat iron twisted back onto itself in a grotesque curve, its rivets completely melded into the framework.

A poignant reminder that stands here in a city that also suffered an incredible force beyond its control.

The next stop on our wander was the Cardboard Cathedral. Originally a structure built to temporarily replace the beautiful bluestone Anglican Cathedral devastated by its tower collapsing in a dramatic fashion onto the square below – scattering tourists and locals as it fell.

The original Cathedral’s fate had been in doubt for many years and some feared for its future, thus the new transitional building being erected. Fortunately, the parish and Government have seen fit to restore the bluestone structure. However, the replacement Cardboard Cathedral or 'transitional Cathedral' has since become so popular that a new purpose is being sought rather than it be demolished once the Anglican Cathedral is restored.

After walking around the square where the original Cathedral had ruled, we left her sad ruin and walked back through the new food market towards the shuttle bus back to Lyttelton.

The small port town of Lyttelton is perched on a hill, its houses, clinging tenaciously to its slopes, look as though they could slip down at any moment. While they look fragile, only a few were so badly damaged that they became uninhabitable during the earthquake and most seem to have been repaired with only a few showing the scars.

One of the big victims, however, was the historic Time Ball Station which drops its ball each day at one o'clock in time with GMT.

The old stone tower was left a dusty and rubbled heap with its ball damaged, but was recently rebuilt and stands proudly once again above the town pronouncing its presence to all that enter the harbour.

Christchurch proved a great day, and is a great city experiencing its rebirth, but its time to leave the comfort of NZ behind us for the world is calling. (ROSS THORBY)  PN



Not feeling ready to embrace the cooler months? The following fashion and beauty inspiration may just change your mind…

Layer up

The joy of still-warm autumn days and cooler nights is the invite to straddle two seasons with your style choices, and a chic and warm outer layer is the best way to fit that brief. Wear lighter pieces like slip dresses in the evening with a chic coat thrown over your shoulders cape-style for added warmth, and pair tees and jeans by day with a stellar puffer jacket or vest for when the wind starts to whip itself into a frenzy.

Karen Walker’s Carlton jacket in oat is a beautiful piece that will work by day or night, a single-breasted style that redefines the classic dinner jacket. It’s designed with single welt pockets and a self-covered button for a sleek look, while the structured shoulders and tailored waist, accented by side panelling, create a killer silhouette. The label’s monogram bomber jacket and quilted monogram vest are the dream partner for casual autumn days, both vying for the role of 'ultimate layering piece' thanks to their utilitarian-chic style and supreme comfort. Crafted in 100% recycled polyester, they come stuffed with a vegan padded fill that offers warmth while being light enough for wear year-round.

From local label Marlow’s Origin AW24 collection, an ode to elevated simplicity, come the Astrid and Olympus trench styles, which again are perfect when thrown over a simple dress by day or are elevated at night. Or if you want to make a statement and nail the red/pink colour trend seen so many times on the international runways over the last few months, grab Kate Sylvester’s Bobby coat in a berry-tinged iteration of the standout shade. Sylvester’s Cooper coat is another great layering piece from the designer’s AW24 collection, Gloria Gloria, which imagines a friendship between artist, designer and socialite Gloria Vanderbilt and feminist activist and journalist, Gloria Steinem.

Lastly, Darling’s newest store on Ponsonby Road is a great destination for those looking to refresh their style with a little extra help from an in-store stylist and an array of fabulous local brands.

Love your locks

Our hair takes a battering over summer, with sea salt and sun wreaking havoc on even the healthiest locks. For advice on how to restore your crowning glory to exactly that, I turned to Emma Axford-Hawkins, the owner of Emma Frances salon on Jervois Road. One of my favourite local beauty faces, Emma – who started her career in London in 2008 – calls the New Zealand summer “so harsh for our hair, and using products

Karen Walker Monogram Bomber Jacket

that are going to care for it during the warmer months (and after) is so important. Using a moisturising shampoo and conditioner will help keep your hair from drying out, and we love recommending Nine Yards Big Noise and Go Loud, for a balanced, light, but nourishing shampoo and conditioner combo.” She also loves Oway’s Glossy Nectar Rebuilding Oil, “Which protects against UV damage and helps to rebuild your hair structure over time.” The Emma Frances team also does a lot of keratin treatments in the salon before summer, an intense protein smoothing treatment that helps to keep frizz to a minimum and maintain the integrity of your hair.

Responsible for the manes of some of Auckland’s most chic women, Emma also has a great eye when it comes to colour and changing it up for the cooler months. “Autumn is my fave time of year for hair changes,” she says, “when warm, rich and glossy tones all make a comeback. We’ve loved embracing the ‘Cowboy Copper’ trend for a rich, warm copper brunette and, also rich, golden blonde for a fresh but still bright vibe. Definitely throwing out the rule book, a bold change is good no matter what the season!”

A fresh face

With over 20 years’ experience in the world of makeup and a true passion for all things beauty, the preternaturally stylish (and very fun) Louise Rae is one of my favourite people to talk to about trends. MECCA’s New Zealand Education Partner, the brunette powerhouse is a fountain of knowledge when it comes to tips and tricks, making her the perfect person to talk to about what’s hot in the world of makeup.

“As a makeup artist for over 25 years, there is one point of view I have always remained the same on – there are never any rules when it comes to makeup,” says Louise. “Instead, let’s embrace individuality and champion experimentation, trying and playing with all textures, brands and looks. Throw those rules you have out the window and start having fun –the beauty of makeup is that you can take it all off if you make a mistake!”

When it comes to trends, the superstar MUA says: “We are seeing some incredible looks and trends coming through, from

Marlow Astrid Trench Marlow Olympus Trench and Day Break Maxi dress Emma Axford-Hawkins (centre) at Emma Frances Salon

the Pat McGrath Maison Margiela glass skin look to the Mob Wife trend, which is all about smoky eyes, overdrawn lips and strong contours.

“If it’s a focus on eyes, try and experiment with textures and colours, if it's cheeks, absolutely try out the combination of powders and creams combined.” One thing she will say, though, is that there should always be a focus on healthy skin. “If you can perfect the look of your skin – whether matte, dewy, highlighted – then anything else is an added bonus.”

Make skin health a priority

Autumn is the perfect time to allocate some extra time to your skin, and the guidance of a talented professional can go a long way in keeping things on the right track.

You’ll have access to superlative skin knowledge and a lot more when you step through the doors of Kumo Concept Store and Skin Spa on Jervois Road, which was previously named Skinography and founded by renowned facialist, Kate Michelmore.

Kumo, inspired by the Japanese word for ‘cloud', is a haven for those seeking a holistic approach to skincare, with Kate saying: "The transition to Kumo signifies more than just a change in name; it's a reflection of our dedication to providing an unparalleled skincare experience. Our mission is to empower individuals to embrace their natural beauty and cultivate radiant, healthy skin."

Whether it was addressing specific issues like barrier disorders, and stress-reactive conditions such as eczema and atopic skin, or hormonal reactions including menopause and acne, Kate felt the existing skincare ranges on her shelves lacked the comprehensive solutions her guests sought, so she created her own, also named Kumo. A

bioactive and natural skincare line designed to support reactive skin synergistically, it’s the perfect complement to the facial studio’s incredible Skin Rituals, which have to be experienced to be believed.

Also, as part of their dedication to holistic skincare, Kumo is now offering naturopathic consultations with their resident Naturopath and Spa Manager, Francesca Deane. A degreequalified, naturopath, nutritionist and holistic skin therapist, Francesca is also a joy to be around – even more of a reason to treat yourself as the mercury drops. (HELENE RAVLICH)  PN

Louise Rae Kate Sylvester Cooper Coat Kumo founder Kate Michelmore


Embrace the season’s chill with our latest season arrivals, from coats, jackets, jumpers to long-sleeved dresses and layering pieces.

Elevate your wardrobe with our selection of designer labels, meticulously chosen to suit your curves. Step into our store and be greeted with a warm ‘kia ora’ or ‘bonjour’ as our team assists you in finding your perfect match.

Can’t make it in person? Shop our online store anytime for cozy cold-weather fashion essentials.

1. Maverick Jacket by Madly Sweetly

2. In Full Swing Dress in Waterlily by Curate

3. Checkmate Chic Coat by Joseph Ribkoff

4. Patrice Dress in Framework by Jellicoe

ZEBRANO, 22 Morrow Street, Newmarket – opposite Westfield. T: 09 523 2500, www.zebrano.co.nz 1. 2. 3. 4.

1 Street 720 Sneaker - Ecco Limestone - $389

2 Roko Sneaker - United Nude Grey Combo - $420

3 Mavie 02 - Josef Seibel Black - $320

4 Felita Boot - Hispanitas Forest Green - $349

5 Charles Heel - Hael & Jax Multi Print - $289.95

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 81
INN SHOES, Three Lamps, 283 Ponsonby Road, T:09 360 5512, www.stepinnshoes.nz @ STEP INN SHOES
1. 2. 3. 4. 5.


No one creates visual magic better than Mother Nature. These naturally formed crystal clusters and obsidian towers are a beautiful way to introduce distinct sculptural elements into your home or work interiors.

To view the current selection of large and collectors' crystals, head into ASH&STONE’s shop at 3 Redmond Street, Ponsonby or visit ashandstone.online.



In the intricate tapestry of human health, a fascinating partnership exists between our gut and our mental wellbeing – a connection that scientists are increasingly unravelling.

At the heart of this relationship lies the gut microbiome, a bustling ecosystem within our digestive tract composed of trillions of microorganisms.

Picture this: within our gut, a diverse community of bacteria, viruses, fungi and other microbes thrives. These tiny inhabitants aren't mere bystanders, they're active participants in a complex symphony of interactions that profoundly influence our health and happiness.

At the forefront of this microbial metropolis is the gut-brain axis—a bi-directional communication network that allows the gut and the brain to exchange signals. This intricate highway enables our gut microbiome to send messages to the brain, influencing everything from mood and cognition, to stress responses and behaviour.

One of the most remarkable aspects of this connection is the gut microbiome's role in producing neurotransmitters –chemical messengers that regulate brain function.

Take serotonin, for example. This neurotransmitter, often associated with happiness and wellbeing, is primarily synthesised in the gut. Our gut bugs play a pivotal role in this process, producing precursors to serotonin and influencing its availability in the brain.

But the influence of the gut microbiome extends beyond neurotransmitters. Its microorganisms also play a crucial role in modulating inflammation – a key factor in the development of mental health disorders such as depression and anxiety.

Dysbiosis, or an imbalance in the gut microbiome, can trigger inflammatory responses that contribute to mood disturbances and cognitive dysfunction.

Imagine our gut microbiome as a finely tuned orchestra, with each microbial species playing a unique instrument. When this orchestra is in harmony, it promotes health and vitality throughout the body. But when discord arises – whether due to stress, diet, or medications – the music falters and our mental wellbeing may suffer as a result.

Indeed, stress is a powerful disruptor of gut health. Chronic stress can alter the composition and function of the gut microbiome, leading to dysbiosis and impairing communication along the gut-brain axis. This dysregulation can exacerbate symptoms of anxiety, depression and other mental health conditions.

Fortunately, we have the power to influence the health of our gut microbiome through lifestyle choices. Just as we nourish our bodies with healthy foods and regular exercise, we can support our gut microbiome with a diet rich in prebiotic fibre, fruits, vegetables and fermented foods.

These dietary choices provide the nutrients our microbial residents need to thrive, promoting a diverse and resilient gut ecosystem.

In essence, the link between gut health and mental health is a testament to the interconnectedness of our body and mind.

By tending to our gut microbiome, we're not just supporting digestion, we're nurturing a foundation of wellbeing that extends from our gut to our brain.

www.benutrition.co.nz @belleepoquenutrition @b.e.nutrition

Dr Sarah Mitchell Weston


“It's time to face a new future with a new purpose,” says renowned wellbeing trainer and mind mentor, Grandmaster Mike Ansari.

The legendary trainer and transformer of lives says it should not be hard to get into fantastic health and personal wellness kicking stress, depression and the mundane drill in life. Mike has spent years working on a programme which is fun, exhilarating and a proven method to lift your goals towards a better you. He says with a smile, “It's not just about weights and a seven-day gym routine, it's about taking full ownership of your mind. Transforming bodies is my job, but uplifting souls is my passion."

Now, more than ever, New Zealanders are concerned about their health. Aging, drinking, day to day stresses of an ever quickening life along with a lack of sleep are creating a greater concern about illness and the possibility of a stroke within one's lifetime.

Mike, who has trained thousands of clients over a 30-year span, believes that he has found a way where motivation, self awareness and health can be a personal goal and achieve remarkable transformational results quickly. During this time, Mike has worked with and studied the habits and motivation of some of our best athletes, great sports people and top business people. Applying his philosophy of mindfulness and blended motivation and physical therapy, has help reshape their goals and enabled them to achieve greatness.

His method taps into igniting your spirit and uplifting your life force to discover that hidden reservoir of inner strength. His remarkable TV Sunday programme showed Mike getting incredible results using the power of the mind. This enabled stroke survivors to get movement, and people to recover feeling and movement in their limbs. In his own words, “The power of the mind is limitless.” His best seller, 'The Perfect I', took five years to write. Durng this, Ansari went back and interviewed people with who he had built strength, confidence and worked through challenging barriers that were holding them back.

A recent survey shows clearly that over 60% of people interested in personal fitness and wellbeing do not get the motivation they need from the gym environment and their drop off rate is always high. "People," says Mike, "always underestimate what it takes to become healthy and free from stress and everyday pressure.

“It’s all in the mind,” says Mike, who is programming three winter workshops in Grey Lynn, where he will teach fitness and motivation as a personal achievement and create what he proudly says is a new you!

Mindfulness is a global phenomenon in the health and wellbeing industry and Mike believes adaptable meditation techniques are real tools for igniting your spirit and tapping into your reservoir of inner strength. It’s a partnership between your mind and your body, he says and the results are a triumph of self-awareness, incredible resilience of the human spirit and can help people on a path to recovery or simply to enjoy their health on a daily basis. Some of his greatest

success has been in stroke and neurological healing. He has worked with a number of clients and they have had long-term success using his methods of gentle movement and soulful reconnection.

His upcoming winter workshops will take you on this journey. He believes that tailored physical therapy which fits your personality is a symphony of physical wellbeing unlocking the natural potential that is within our body and soul.

Mike Ansari sees himself as a guide that is able to unlock the transformation that people believe they can obtain. He says, "We are unfortunately addicted to our own limitations, whether that be physical or mental, and we often lack a sense of self belief."

Ansari has a proven record and believes he can help you to achieve wonders beyond your imagination. "It’s not a hard task," says Ansari. "With me, you will get the chance to see yourself as limitless."

So, what are you waiting for? If you want to experience a new you, book a session with Mike now. You will be delighted with the results. "After all," says Mike, "It really is about you."

Purchase 'The Perfect I' by Mike Ansari from www.mikeansari.com or through Amazon.

Call or email Mike directly on M: 021 856 621, E: hello@mikeansari.com, www.mikeansari.com



Did you see the post on Facebook of the woman and her baby caught in the rain who signalled the Outer Link bus on Garnet Road but it didn’t stop?

This is the bus that can’t go along Meola Road because it is closed for road works. How can a bus driver be so heartless?

Auckland Transport want us to catch buses but it seems that they haven't got that message through to their drivers.

Mary Landsford


I’m writing to request if Melissa Lee (known to many journalists as Missing Lee due to her ability to dodge interviews) would dedicate a few column inches on what she proposes to do for the media industry. The recent closure of Newshub and job cuts at TVNZ were met with her comments, “the way people consume media is changing and they need to transition to digital.” Wow, what a lightbulb moment, senior media executes around the country have been scratching their heads for over a decade looking for the answer. No wonder she is the Minister of Broadcasting.

Perhaps she could let us know if the Coalition have a position yet as to whether to get companies like Meta and Facebook

start to pay for the new content they obtain for free from media organisations.

The Fair Digital News Bargaining Bill which will enable this, is currently at the select committee stage and was opposed by National and Melissa Lee when in opposition.

Paul Kenny, Ponsonby



Great to see Kourtney Kardashian and drummer Travis Barker of Blink-182 having a plant-based burger at Wise Boys in Great North Road in Grey Lynn. They ate the signature burger - the Wise Boy with a side of onion rings. The locals were so impressed and excited to see international A-listers in our ‘hood. It was nice of the pair to give a shout out on social media about their meal.

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 85 · Stroke Healing · Neurological Disorder Healing Mindfulness Meditation Techniques Depression Stress Relief Professional Fitness Expert Call Mike on 021 856 621 AS SEEN ON MINUTES 60 mikeansari.com Email Mike hello@mikeansari.com
Opinions expressed in Ponsonby News are not always the opinion of Alchemy Media Limited & Ponsonby News.


How the power of sattva can make you calmer and happier!

One of the most effective ways to manage stress levels and to eliminate ingrained negative mental conditioning is to live a sattvic lifestyle.

Sattva is one of the three universal energies or gunas in ayurveda. In Sanskrit, sattva means balance, harmony or light and represents both emotional intelligence and creative potential. A person embodying sattvic energy is filled with kindness, compassion, empathy and love. They feel calm and balanced. A sattvic attitude helps us avoid toxicity in relationships, food and in our lifestyle choices, which ultimately leads to happiness.

Rajas, the second universal energy, generates activity, change and disturbance. It is mobile, excitable and pushes you offcentre, creating disintegration and imbalance.

Tamas, the third universal energy, is immobile, still and heavy causing obstruction and lack of perception which leads to degeneration, delusion and confusion.

All three gunas have important roles to play in nature and interact to create a unique and harmonious flow – the circle of life. They are different aspects of one force unfolding to be mutually supportive and productive. Likewise, each person has sattvic, rajas and tamasic energies flowing within them and these levels fluctuate over time, to our benefit... or not!

The good news is that you can intentionally increase your sattvic energy to improve your mental, physical and emotional balance when life throws challenges your way. Anyone can begin to use ayurvedic wisdom to manage their mental and physical resilience, and you can start today.

Take these five initial steps to cultivating a sattvic life:

Be authentic

We can consciously regulate our relationships with others and how we conduct ourselves in the world. Following good moral principles and ethical values every day promotes a sattvic way of life.

Eat well

The food we eat directly impacts our spiritual awareness and consciousness. Ayurveda classifies food into sattvic, rajasic and tamasic groups depending on how they affect the mind.

· Sattvic food induces energy, mental clarity and alertness. Choose freshly prepared foods which are naturally grown, pure and free of toxins and pesticides. Prioritise fruit, vegetables, salads, nuts, grains, herbs and teas, mild spices and legumes.

· Rajasic food has hot, spicy and stimulating qualities, and can lead to stress and anxiety if you eat large amounts.

Watch for onions, garlic, chilli, lemon, tomatoes, caffeinated teas, coffee, eggs and commercial condiments.

Tamasic foods induce heaviness, sluggishness, lethargy and feeling mentally dull. Avoid eating meat, highly processed, preserved, tinned and junk food, leftovers, commercial cakes and pastries too often.

Move your body

Practising yoga, mindfulness and meditation daily helps keep you calm and mentally at balance, and is wonderful for increasing sattvic energy.

Step outside

Spending lots of time in nature swimming, walking and exercising while breathing in fresh clean air is a great way to boost your sattva levels.

Detox daily

Flushing out toxins through daily ayurvedic cleansing procedures such as tongue scraping, self-abhyanga massage, nasal rinse or oil pulling also helps to keep your body and mind in a sattvic state.

Many of those tips for a sattvic lifestyle will sound familiar, but we’re just touching the surface. If this resonates with you, book an ayurvedic consultation, or come to one of our educational seminars. (SARITA

Ayurvedic Medicine Practitioner & Yoga Therapist www.ayurvedanz.co.nz M: 021 144 5768 | @ayurvedanz

86 PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH (except January) LIVING, THINKING + BEING M: 021 144 5768 E: sarita@ayurvedanz.com www.ayurvedanz.co.nz @ayurvedanz


In recent years, there have been serious accidents at workplaces resulting in injuries or even deaths.

Business owners need to comply with the requirements of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015. Doing so can help to prevent incidents, ensure the wellbeing and safety of employees and avoid business owners facing serious legal consequences including large fines and prosecutions.

To ensure compliance with the act and effective implementation of health and safety procedures, there are six key aspects that business owners must address:

1. Understand the legal requirements – Compliance with health and safety regulations is a fundamental aspect of workplace safety. Employers in New Zealand must adhere to the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015, which outlines the responsibilities of employers, employees and other parties to ensure a safe workplace. By staying informed about legal requirements and implementing necessary measures, organizations can protect their employees and avoid potential penalties.

2. Risk assessment – Conducting regular risk assessments is essential for identifying potential hazards in any workplace. Employers should assess risks' associated tasks, equipment and the work environment to implement appropriate control measures.

3. Training – Providing employees with adequate training and education on health and safety practices is essential. Employees should be aware of potential hazards, emergency procedures and the proper use of safety equipment. By investing time training your employees, your workplace will be in good hands if any risks or hazards arise.

4. Emergency plans and protocols – Being prepared for emergencies is crucial to ensure the safety of employees. Developing and practising emergency response plans, including evacuation procedures and first aid protocols, can help organizations respond effectively in crisis situations.

5. Regular inspections – Regular inspections of the workplace are necessary to identify hazards and ensure

compliance with safety standards. Employers should conduct routine inspections to assess the condition of equipment, facilities and work practices.

6. Review – Workplace health and safety practices are always improving. By regularly reviewing and updating policies, procedures and safety measures, organizations can adapt to changing conditions and address emerging risks. Encouraging feedback from employees and stakeholders can also help identify areas for improvement and promote a culture of safety.

Health and Safety is an increasingly complex and important area of risk management for businesses. The points above are just a high-level summary but highlight what business owners must address to mitigate risks.

As well as legal compliance and doing all they can to protect employees, contractors and others within the business, business owners must recognise the risk to themselves as directors and owners in terms of the potential significant cost of fines and legal proceedings for non-compliance.  PN

Disclaimer – While all care has been taken, Johnston Associates Chartered Accountants Ltd and its staff accept no liability for the content of this article; always see your professional advisor before taking any action that you are unsure about.

JOHNSTON ASSOCIATES, Level 1, One Jervois Road, Ponsonby, T:
09 361 6701, www.johnstonassociates.co.nz


This month, 250 Gallery is featuring the works of mixed media artist Rachel Downey, 'It’s Just a Feeling'.

A selection of work spanning the past six years showing the evolution of her process from detailed layering to more gestural abstract work.

27 March – 27 April

Wednesday – Saturday 10am – 5pm

Opening event 5pm – 8pm, Thursday 4 April

Rachel is a New Zealand-born artist, currently living in Auckland/Tamaki Makaurau.

She spent over 20 years in business in Telco/IT/Medical sectors in New Zealand and Australia. While working as an Executive Recruiter, she had a serious treatment injury in hospital that changed her life and left her unable to work in the way she had before.

As therapy, to process multiple spinal surgeries and ongoing pain, Rachel took up painting in 2016. This was a vehicle for her to express her thoughts and feelings and gave meaning and purpose to her life when she was struggling to find any.

After much experimentation on her own, and then attending Browne School of Art for six years, Rachel continues to experiment with materials, processes and feelings. Her work continues to change and evolve in line with what her nerve damage and chronic pain allow. It is abstract, sometimes detailed, gestural and has focused on expressing physical and psychological pain. Her desire is to find beauty through

the pain and, although her work articulates her personal story, she feels it’s one that many might relate to.

It’s Just a Feeling is a mantra that she has employed in dealing with pain – attempting to experience it as not a defining characteristic of who she is, but rather a sensation that she endeavours to emotionally uncouple from. Something to be curious about.

It’s Just a Feeling is also the way Rachel paints, intuitively, never quite knowing where the process will take her. She has a strong relationship with colour and is a self-confessed ‘music junkie’, the latter influencing the mark making and gestures in her work.

Rachel has work in private collections, has exhibited in many group shows and is a regular invitee of the Kings College Art Exhibition. This is her first solo show.

Instagram: @rachelsartnz


This month we will be hosting the Auckland Playback Theatre on Friday 19 April, 7pm – 8.30pm, gold coin koha.

250 Gallery, 250 Ponsonby Road, Tina M: 0274 519 662.

Instagram: tinafrantzenartist and: two.fiftygallery www.tinafrantzen.com



Term 2 Drama Classes for ages 5-16 begin the week starting Monday 29 April at TAPAC. These fun classes encourage creativity, imagination and collaboration.

"Thank you so much for such a FAB programme! Tim Bray Youth Theatre has been awesome and my daughter has had a ball!" -- Sarah S., parent of YT student.

Classes are also offered on the North Shore.

Extraordinarily Creative Drama Classes in East Auckland and the North Shore are for autistic and neurodivergent children and teens that focus on the process of drama to allow students to grow and shine in their own time and space.

“I love these inclusive drama classes as I believe they are helping my boy continue to learn how his body moves and

to express himself safely and with growing confidence. All our kids need a safe and accessible and acceptable place to learn, and your classes are definitely that. He evens tells his teacher at school all about drama class and he knows everyone’s name.” - Natasha J., EC parent,

Extraordinarily Creative needs community support to grow and keep classes affordable. Can you help with a donation towards the Mary Amoore Gift a Seat®

Scholarships for students of families in need? Please visit: timbray.org.nz/support/#Gift

For more information: T: 09 486 2261 E: youth.theatre@timbray.org.nz


PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 89 ARTS + CULTURE www.timbray.org.nz 09-486-2261 Western Springs, Takapuna, Browns Bay 5–16 years Our tutors fire young imaginations and ignite the creative minds of tomorrow Glen Innes and North Shore 5–16yrs For autistic and neurodivergent youth to find their own voice and place TIM BRAY YOUTH THEATRE DRAMA DRAMA Weekly Weekly Enrol for Term 2 2024 now!


Limn Gallery, situated on Ponsonby Road, Auckland, has long been a beacon of creativity and urban art in New Zealand.

However, February marked a new chapter for the gallery as owners Matt and Xavier announced the closure of their permanent space to embark on an ambitious journey — taking their gallery on tour around New Zealand and the world.

With a vision to showcase the remarkable talent of urban contemporary artists from New Zealand to a global audience, Limn Gallery's decision to close its doors represents a bold step towards expanding the horizons for local artists and achieving global domination in the art world representing local artists.

Matt, the driving force behind Limn Gallery, expressed his excitement about this transformative decision. "Closing our permanent gallery space is not an end but a beginning of a thrilling adventure," he stated. "We believe that New Zealand urban contemporary artists deserve a platform on the world stage, and by taking Limn Gallery on tour, we aim to shine a spotlight on their incredible talent and unique perspectives."

The decision to go on tour reflects the gallery owners' commitment to fostering creativity and innovation within the New Zealand art scene. By breaking free from the confines of a fixed location, Limn Gallery will have the flexibility to engage with diverse communities across New Zealand and beyond, forging connections and collaborations that transcend geographical boundaries.

Limn Gallery's tour will feature a curated selection of urban contemporary artworks, showcasing emerging and established New Zealand artists alongside international talent.

As Limn Gallery sets its sights on global expansion, through art fairs, exhibitions, pop-up events and collaborations with international partners, it seeks to elevate New Zealand urban art onto the global stage starting with Australia later this year.

The closure of Limn Gallery's permanent space on Ponsonby Road marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter in the gallery's storied history. Stay tuned for updates on Limn Gallery's tour schedule and upcoming exhibitions as they embark on a mission to showcase the incredible talent of New Zealand artists to the world.

Limn Gallery

M: 021 0233 2826



Matt Heath, Limn Gallery


Get set to groove the night away to disco tunes performed by a full symphony orchestra, plus enjoy fabulous food and cocktails, at Auckland Philharmonia’s newest event –Boogie Wonderland: Disco Ball on 16 May in the Auckland Town Hall.

Don your sequins and flares for this epic night of disco and symphony fusion featuring performances by Annie Crummer, Dillon Rhodes (Hipstamatics) and LOU’ANA, alongside the Auckland Philharmonia’s full orchestra, plus unmissable disco DJ sets by Nathan Haines and Jaimie Webster Haines.

The Auckland Town Hall will be transformed into the glam and glittering world of disco fever, including a Studio 54-style bar and disco-themed food stations. Lounge seating areas will also provide a chance to chill between dance floor disco battles.

Shake your groove thing to all the electrifying hits from the 70s with full orchestral arrangements, including the songs ‘Night Fever’, ‘Young Hearts, Run Free’ and ‘(That’s the Way) I Like It’.

Conducted by Maestro David Kay, Boogie Wonderland: Disco Ball will be a night of symphony and sequins to remember.

And the best part is – you’ll be grooving for a good cause. Auckland Philharmonia is a charitable trust, and every ticket purchased supports the Auckland Philharmonia’s Learn & Participate music education programme that offers numerous opportunities for over 20,000 young people and adults to

get involved with the orchestra, in schools and communities throughout Tāmaki Makaurau.

This event is proudly delivered by the Auckland Philharmonia thanks to the support of Auckland Live and Little Wolf Catering.

Limited Early Bird tickets are now available from aucklandphil.nz/boogie-wonderland and include event entry, two complementary beverages, and dinner served from delicious food stations.

Get in early as it’s sure to be a sell out!

Boogie Wonderland: Disco Ball, 7pm, Thursday 16 May, Auckland Town Hall Booking or more info: aucklandphil.nz/boogie-wonderland

PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 91



“Those who discovered the law of nonviolence in the midst of violence were greater geniuses than Newton.” – Gandhi.

satellite2 presents two exhibitions which commemorate and celebrate the lives of two prophets, Rua Kenana of Maungapōhatu and Nunuku of Rēkohu whose utopian ways of living are a powerful, but undervalued antidote for the ills of contemporary society.

From the Land – For the Land: The Rua Panels

17 March – 14 April

Open Wednesday – Sunday, 10am-2pm

Venue: 30 Victoria Road

An allegorical mural by artist Tony Johnston on the life of Rua Kenana, Tuhoe visionary and prophet. The 10-panel, 20m long mural, painted by Tony in 1981 was inspired by Judith Binney’s book, Mihaia [Messiah]. We open the first public exhibition of these works five years after Rua’s official pardon by government in 2019.

Nunuku’s Light – Paintings by Miriam Cameron

23 March – 17 April

Open Wednesday – Sunday, 10am-2pm

An exhibition of works by expressionist painter Miriam

Cameron whose travels to Rēkohu the Chatham Islands with artist Nigel Brown and friends, resulted in a series of paintings remembering Nunuku, the land, sea and sky of his people, the Moriori, who lived for eight centuries under a covenant of peace which influenced their art, the dendroglyphs and petroglyphs of cave, rock and tree.

These exhibitions are the stories for our times.

satellite2, 61A Victoria Road, Devonport, www.satellite2.co.nz

Miriam Cameron – Nunuku’s Cave Tony Johnston – Rua Kenana panels


Massive Theatre Company is one of Tāmaki’s longest running theatre companies – with more than three decades under its belt.

A long-held dream for Massive, which had a small office space for the core staff of five but rented various spaces for annual activities, was to have its very own space where it could rehearse, run free theatre workshop programme, and gather with community members and like-minded people to share ideas and kai.

Thanks to funding from Manatū Taonga, that dream was realised last year with the company moving into new premises at 562 Richmond Road.

Massive was founded in 1991 by Artistic Director Samantha Scott MNZM, as the Maidment Youth Theatre Company. The company creates original physical theatre, working from the authentic personal stories of the creatives involved.

Although originally a youth theatre company, the evolution over the years has seen Massive become intergenerational, as those who joined in their teens wanted to continue creating with the company when they chose the performing arts as a career and worked professionally.

This includes the likes of Kura Forrester, Miriama McDowell, Bree Peters, Wesley Dowdell, Siene Leo’o (Bubbah) Olo, and many more familiar names and faces that regularly grace our stages and screens.

Still passionate about emerging artists and the energy and freshness they bring, Massive continues its free theatre devising workshop programmes for rangatahi, with many of the long-term company members working as teaching artists to run the programme.

Massive usually presents two shows each year – an emerging artist production that acts as a milestone in its development programmes, and a professional production with more established company members. This year, both productions will be presented at Te Pou Theatre in Henderson.

I LOVE YOU G, running from 1 – 11 May, sees long-time Massive company members, Neil Amituanai (The Brave, Three Wise Cousins), Dominic Ona-Ariki (The Brave, One

This show delves into the complexity of friendship, illustrating the constant navigation and negotiation involved in maintaining and evolving these bonds. It portrays the essence of showing up for each other, the resilience required to weather storms together, and the transformative journey towards forging friendships into brotherhood.

These three inspirational actors bring their real lives to the stage. Full of trademark cheek, grit and a whole lot of heart, I LOVE YOU G is a gutsy and at times uncomfortable love letter to brotherhood – a joyous invitation to 'soften the f**k up’.

Premiering in July, Te Ao Hou sees five emerging Māori and Pasifika artists co-directed by Margaret-Mary Hollins and Hone Taukiri. This show dares to imagine a world without boundaries and poses the question of who we could be if we free our imagination.

Registrations for Massive Theatre Company’s free theatre devising workshops and information about the upcoming shows are available at www.massivecompany.co.nz


PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 93 MAY1-11 Forshowticketsorworkshopinfo,visitmassivecompany.co.nzoremailusatinfo@massive.co.nz Creatingauthentic,originalphysicaltheatre. LearnandtrainwithMassive’sfree workshopprogramme.
Lane Bridge, Double Parked) and Beulah Koale (The Brave, Hawaii Five-O, Next Goal Wins) co-directed by Scotty Cotter (The Brave, Mauri Tau, Shortland Street) and Artistic Director Sam Scott.
1/194 Great North Road, Grey Lynn, T: 09-378 8985, www.browne.school.nz
Evan Woodruffe's 5th December 2023 at BSA Gallery


Orexart are going to Aotearoa Art Fair from 18 - 21 April at the Viaduct Events Centre.

But they are also previewing the artists they will be showing on Saturday 6 April 12 noon until 4pm.

Meet the artists – Philippa Blair, Tony Lane, Richard McWhannell, Glen Wolfgramm, Martin Ball, Kathy Barber, Johnny Turner, Richard Adams and other gallery artists.

See their works in a changing show of OREXART artists throughout April.

OREXART, 221 Ponsonby Road, T: 09 378 0588, www.orexart.co.nz

AOTEAROA ART FAIR, Viaduct Events Centre, www.artfair.co.nz

Peter James Smith, Rainfall, 500 x 1020mm, oil on linen Glen Wolfgramm, Circling, 1200mm, acrylic on panel Philippa Blair, Afloat, 2000 x 1800mm, acrylic on canvas Richard McWhannell, Once Were Ram Riders, oil on linen, 460 x 610mm
96 PONSONBY NEWS + April 2024 PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH (except January) THE PONSONBY PINK PAGES 290 Ponsonby Road Ponsonby Flowers by Bill Patel LET PONSONBY NEWS READERS KNOW ABOUT YOUR BRAND… ADVERTISING RATES START AT $235+GST EMAIL: info@ponsonbynews.co.nz PH: 021 771 147 www.ponsonbynews.co.nz STUDIO PILATES WYNYARD QUARTER TEXT OR CALL 021 510 486 TO REDEEM THIS OFFER 6 CLASSES FOR $60 Bringing fast, fresh and affordable food & drinks to the beautiful courtyard of Cafe 39, Ponsonby The Perfect Event For Every Occasion www.highsocietea.co.nz www.facebook.com/luckytable13
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you in your own home and could do with some help with tasks that are in the “too hard basket?”
you enjoy company, reading and discussion over interesting illustrated books or listening to music?
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you, please call or text me on 021 079 4668 or email raesam@hotmail.co.nz SENIORS’ SUPPORT


MISS PEARL NECLIS – what your stars hold for April

Aquarius (the Water Carrier)

21 January - 19 February

Everyone around you seems to be extremely busy and dealing with complicated stuff. Whereas you seem to be completely calm and are able to deal with the most stressful of situations. You can indulge yourself without consequence it seems – a gift that is envied.

Pisces (the Fishes)

20 February - 20 March

It might be the time hit the restart button and start again. You seem to have lost track of your goals a little and you have a chance to get back in the saddle and ride again. Big changes are coming to you as long as the path you are following stays clear.

Aries (the Ram)

21 March - 20 April

Ever wondered why that little voice in your head is telling you to relax and go with the flow? Please listen to it. You’ve been working hard recently and you deserve to rest while you consider your next move. Let go of any baggage that’s following you around, it’s weighing you down.

Taurus (the Bull)

21 April - 21 May

It’s very important that you are understood and if that means you have to be more visible, then that’s what you have to do. You want to connect more with your circle as you have a lot to offer. The more you offer the more support you’ll receive.

Gemini (the Twins)

22 May - 21 June

You have a great ambition to leave your mark on the world and so far you seem to be going the right way about it. You could ask for anything and you’ll get the help you’re after. Be pushy if you have to, you’ll be on the next rung of the ladder in no time.

Cancer (the Crab)

22 June - 22 July

You seem to be fed up with the status quo but, unfortunately, there’s not much you can do about it apart from getting on with it. You don’t seem satisfied with the stuff that usually keeps you busy and instead you’re looking for something new to keep you stimulated. You will find it.

Leo (the Lion)

23 July - 21 August

Sometimes you find yourself doing the same thing and it isn’t making you cost efficient. If everything is an effort, please persevere as it will be worth all the effort you’re putting in. Venture out of your comfort zone if you have to as it will be worth it.

Virgo (the Virgin)

22 August - 23 September

You really don’t have to be on your own anymore or face problems by yourself if you accept a little help now and again. If all goes well, someone is about to play a significant part in your life if you let it happen. If you need to have a conversation with someone then that’s what you have to do.

Libra (the Scales)

24 September - 23 October

It might be time to break out the exercise gear both mentally and physically this month. You’re being tested on your abilities it seems. You have nothing to fear though as you are in peak shape as always and you have a mind that is as sharp as a razor.

Scorpio (the Scorpion)

You’re definitely not one of the shy ones, especially if you’re about to take centre stage at something. You have this ability to attract attention no matter what you’re doing. Be prepared to be in the spotlight quite a lot this month as you are on a roll.

Sagittarius (the Archer)

23 November - 22 December

You’ll find all that you seem to be looking for at home this month. No matter what you do, your orbit attracts fantastic opportunities. The only dilemma you have is which one to pick as they will all make you a greater person than you already are.

Capricorn (the Goat)

23 December - 20 January

You are very lucky in that you are able to do what you want in life and it makes you very happy to be at that stage. Sharing what you have will give you a big boost. However, there’s only you to go around so don’t overdo it by thinking you are invincible as you don’t want to be exhausted.

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