Page 1

Established: OCTOBER 1989


MAY 2020




Elaine Ferguson & Matt Johnson An unrivalled Ray White Duo A snapshot of the wide range of properties we have sold this year

52 Sussex Street, Grey Lynn

5/73C Carlton Gore Road, Newmarket

1/1 Neville Street, Point Chevalier

201/22 Fleet Street, Eden Terrace

23 Ireland Street, Freemans Bay

2/25 Nutsey Avenue, Northcote

43 Cowan Street, Ponsonby

19 Bellwood Ave, Mount Eden

62 Crummer Road, Grey Lynn

1/2 Ira Street, Mount Roskill

37 Symonds Street, Onehunga

9B Eden View Road, Sandringham

13C Emmett Street, Herne Bay

14 Meadow Street, Mount Wellington

56 Ferry Road, Arkles Bay

Elaine Ferguson 027 534 5024 elaine.ferguson@raywhite.com Matt Johnson 027 243 6831 matt.johnson@raywhite.com 259 Ponsonby Rd, Ponsonby Selling a wide range of properties, across Central Auckland.

Ray White Damerell Group Limited (Licensed REAA 2008)

Elaine Ferguson & Matt Johnson The perfect duo for this changing market

With Elaine’s Degree and a background in Psychotherapy and Design and Matt’s previous service in the New Zealand police force, this Ray White property duo brings a versatile yet wellbalanced dynamic to the table. In order to carry a truly successful career in real estate, Elaine upholds the values of honesty, integrity, transparency, and being as straight-forward as possible. Matt’s strategic thinking helps him plan, develop, and carry out successful property campaigns. Together, Elaine and Matt make for well-balanced teamwork supported by years of industry insight as well as a bold, creative, and energetic approach. Elaine Ferguson Matt Johnson

Elaine is brilliant at reading peoplethis means she understands the emotional process of buying and selling a home. Her approach of treating her clients with sensitivity and respect goes a long way in the dynamic of this property duo. Her attentive listening skills give her the upper-hand. Elaine is wellversed in uncovering what the real obstacles are for home buyers and sellers. At the end of the day, it’s this intuitive talent that gets each sale over the line. Matt, also a key member of the Ray White Ponsonby team, brings with him a bold and enthusiastic approach, which, in essence is a massive driver of success between this property duo.

027 534 5024 elaine.ferguson@raywhite.com 027 243 6831 matt.johnson@raywhite.com

With his eagle-eye for detail and some of the top negotiation skills on the property market today, Matt is committed to delivering a successful, streamlined experience for any home buyer or seller, no matter the market. Matt is calm and collected and believes in creating a stress-free experience for all parties involved. Together, Elaine and Matt have seen immense success within their property portfolios during the time they have worked together as a team. They believe that there really is no ‘magic trick’ to successit takes hard work, open lines of communication, and honesty between each other and with every client.

09 376 2186  259 Ponsonby Road, Ponsonby rwponsonby.co.nz Ray White Damerell Group Ltd (Licensed REAA 2008)

Covid-Safe Gift Giving Making Mother’s Day & birthday bubbles memorable Many of us have celebrated birthdays in a bubble and now as we head towards Mother’s Day, most of us will be looking for different yet memorable ways to show our mothers we care P28.

EDITOR/PUBLISHER: MARTIN LEACH martinleach@xtra.co.nz or martin@ponsonbynews.co.nz DISTRIBUTION MANAGER: JAY PLATT jayplatt@xtra.co.nz or jay@ponsonbynews.co.nz AD SALES & CONTRIBUTING EDITOR: ANDREA KAHUKIWA andrea@ponsonbynews.co.nz ADVERTISING SALES/AD DESIGNER: MELISSA PAYNTER melissapaynter@me.com OPERATIONS MANAGER: GWYNNE DAVENPORT gwynne@ponsonbynews.co.nz CONTRIBUTING MUSIC EDITOR: FINN MCLENNAN-ELLIOTT finn.huia@gmail.com CONTRIBUTING EDITOR: JOHN ELLIOTT johnelliott38@outlook.com PROOF READER: DEIRDRE THURSTON

PONSONBY NEWS is published monthly, excluding January by: ALCHEMY MEDIA LIMITED, P.O. BOX 47-282 Ponsonby, Auckland 1144, T: 09 378 8553 or 09 361 3356, www.ponsonbynews.co.nz PONSONBY NEWS is printed on paper sourced from sustainable, well managed forests and manufactured under the environmental management system ISO 14001. Our hand-delivered copies are flow wrapped in eco-friendly, degradable plastic. PRINTED BY WEBSTAR, AUCKLAND. ISSN 1177-3987


@ponsonbynews @Ponsonby_News @ponsonbynews

GRAPHIC DESIGNER: ARNA MARTIN arna@cocodesign.co.nz ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTIONS: Within New Zealand $49. By cheque or postal order in NZ$. Please note: we do not hold back issues of Ponsonby News. Our archive is all online as pdfs. Please visit www.ponsonbynews.co.nz The entire content of this publication is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means - electronic, mechaal, photocopying, recording or otherwise - without the prior permission, in writing, of the copyright owner. Colour transparencies and manuscripts submitted are sent at the owner’s risk; neither the publisher nor its agents accept any responsibility for loss or damage. Although every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, the publisher can accept no liability for any inaccuracies that may occur.


@ Rose Tinted Florist - Rose Tinted Flowers and Cake




Stunningly curated outdoor furniture from Italy, Belgium, France, Indonesia and the Philippines. Before you purchase anywhere, you owe it to yourself to compare. Prices. Design. Quality. Instant Availability. Full Assembly. You will be so pleased you did. Sunbrella® cushions are included with the purchase of our deep seating pieces as shown on our website.










137 - 147 The Strand, Parnell, Auckland | 0800.111.112 sales@designwarehouse.co.nz | commercial@designwarehouse.co.nz | www.designwarehouse.co.nz


COUNCIL’S COVID CAMOUFLAGE During the course of this week, Auckland’s Mayor Phil Goff and his councillors delivered their early Christmas wish list of 73 priority ‘shovel-ready jobs’ to Crown Infrastructures Ltd.

The response from WLB: “The referenced correspondence from Ngati Whatua o Orakei was legally privileged and confidential to whom it was addressed. Staff have approached Ngati Whatua for permission to share the letter. We are awaiting a response.”

With a dire need for jobs and while our coffers lay empty, the council should support projects with maximum economic output for minimal cost to the ratepayers.

Surely, mana whenua approval to remove a forest in a public reserve that is also a ‘significant ecological area’ should be officially on the record and not “legally privileged and confidential” and that “to whom it was addressed” would be the Chair of the Waitemata Local Board in an official capacity and therefore a public document!

Recent Government announcements of ‘temporary footpath ‘widenings’ and more cycleways have our Super City’s council eager to get through their hobby of accumulating cycleways. 12 of the 73 (over 15%) projects amounting to more than 2 billion dollars mention cycleways. A vote in this week’s emergency meeting passed a set of rules which includes guidelines for what vehicles will be allowed on footpaths and cycleways. Think of this as a council suggested road code for the ever expanding network of cycleways and footpaths being installed. The council says this will come at no or little cost to Auckland Transport and whilst having honorable intentions to keep the community safer, their recommendations seem flawed. Such suggestions include: • A speed limit of 15km

This is a project estimated to be at least $750,000 from the public purse. Doesn’t that make it public business? Was it that I questioned the conflict of interest in this approval, when the same body that approved the forest removal would be providing the replacement plants? I’m left with more questions than answers. Gael Baldock, Westmere FOOTPATH WIDENING IN HIGH STREET During Covid-19 lockdown, more people were out walking and cycling than ever before – particularly enjoying the empty roads. Then Julie Anne Genter announced that footpaths would be widened to allow 2m social distancing and cycle lanes would be rolled out further. That bothered me because...

• Restrictions on the width of your vehicle at 750mm • That users must behave in a ‘courteous and considerate manner’ • Overtaking and give way rules In order to regulate caution and safety for the new paths, I wonder how many people have a speedometer on their bike? Are we now going to have cycle police to maintain these rules? If they’re concerned about health and safety, why weren’t these safety regulations put in years ago? And why oh why is this on the agenda of the third ‘emergency committee meeting’ and considered an important matter for dealing with COVID-19? Moved by Councillor Coom, seconded by Chris Darby, the motion was carried with four councillors abstaining commenting ‘while having honourable intentions, the package is overall impractical and not a priority in these current times’. In my community in the Waitemata Ward, many of my fellow students work in the enormous hospitality sector of Central Auckland. Arguably one of the most impacted sectors, what will the council be doing to ensure bars restaurants and cafes from Grey Lynn to Ponsonby to Parnell remain open for our young people. While many in my neighbourhood lose hospitality jobs and businesses are on the edge of collapse, the council believes the best way to invest in jobs and stop the spread of COVID-19 is to build temporary footpaths and cycle lanes echoing the ideology of infamous head city designer Ludo Cambell-Reid. Josh Doubtfire, Ponsonby WESTERN SPRINGS FOREST UPDATE At the Waitemata Local Board public meeting on 17 March, regarding the board’s vote on the forest, Chair Richard Northey stated that Ngati Whatua as mana whenua had approved the forest removal. I asked WLB for “The letter from Ngati Whatua 12 March 2020 approving the ‘Western Springs pine tree removal’ and any correspondence requesting that approval.”


Prior to lockdown, Auckland Council announced that the footpath widening in High Street would be extended further up the street. I knew that the open day when the whole of High Street had been blocked off for a street festival, had not been successful for retailers. One of those had joined in the festive spirit by having bubbly and nibbles for customers and there were so few that I just had to drink several glasses (so it wouldn’t go to waste.) I decided to a survey of my own of the shops directly affected. Not only were the car parks removed from the right hand side of where the widening had occurred, but on the left only some loading zones were left, others were filled with plants and huge rubbish bins blocking a view of the shop. Staff generally liked the more open streetscape without parked cars. Simon Wilson calls it, Auckland “Council’s flagship urban design project.” But three shops reported the number of customers entering their shop to have halved since the same time last year (actual numbers from one shop 306 reduced to 135). One shop had their trade down by $10k the previous month when compared to the previous year. Three shops are leaving High Street and going to the new Commercial Bay development. Several shops are empty. One shop with a manager on the Heart of the City committee, said there had been no change To be fair, the opening of 277 Newmarket has also influenced this trade... or should I say ‘lack of trade’? Luckily, this has been done as a temporary installation. We need to band together to help these small businesses trade out of their debts and widening footpaths wouldn’t do that as it certainly hasn’t done so for High Street. Gael Baldock, Westmere



Ponsonby News has been hit hard by the Covid-19 Pandemic and we having been working vigorously on our business plan in our small bubble. We are relieved to be making our way through the Level 3 conditions and then Level 2 is hopefully coming soon. Local businesses have been doing it hard – some landlords have come to the party offering some reduced rents but others have offered nothing. There are some local businesses who have done so well they have declared that they have ‘almost made a profit’. The plan for most has been about service, positioning them for the time when they can fully open up again.

Next Sunday is Mother’s Day and, at this point in time, we feel Mother’s Week seems more appropriate. If you are a last-minute shopper, don’t despair, many local retailers offer click and collect services so that you can pick up your items just 30 minutes after ordering. In general, Ponsonby News’ readers are a little spoiled for choice with a vast array of fashion, home decor and specialist shops. Local businesses both near and far are ready to go the extra mile and make gift-giving in lockdown as fun and easy as possible. Let’s keep ourselves positive, kind, with more community cooperation and togetherness going forward, and prospering long after Covid-19 has been eliminated. It will do wonders to our self-esteem and our

photography: Connor Crawford

Portion sizes, when getting takeaways, have unanimously been declared ‘very generous’, and quality has been declared ‘exceptional’. It’s a new way of engaging with cafes and restaurants and many have started making it happen – iconic businesses like Gusto Italiano, Fives Loaves, Sidart, Prego, SPQR and some eateries based in Ponsonby Central.

Jay Platt & Martin Leach wellbeing. A local mentioned having a mid-winter food festival at home through virtual ordering and delivery, giving us another opportunity to eat the best of Ponsonby at home on a chilly autumn evening. (MARTIN LEACH)  PN

Ken Ring: Auckland weather diary, June 2020 – weather by the moon June may be wetter, cloudier and warmer than normal, with no dry spells lasting more than three days. The first week may see most rain, the second week is second wettest, and the third week brings the lightest rain. The fourth week contains about four dry but cloudy days. The heaviest falls may be around 7th/8th and 29th, and driest days may be 19th, 24th,and 27th. The sunniest days may be 6th and 26th but will also see light showers. The average afternoon and overnight temperatures may feel 2° warmer than the norm. Atmospheric pressures may average about 1011mbs. Wind directions may average from the southwest. For fishermen, the highest kingtide may be around 6th, with a lesser kingtide on the 23rd. The best fishing bitetimes in the east are at dusk on 5th-7th and 20th-22nd (and in the west at around 12 noon on those days). Chances are also good in the east for 12 noon of 12th15th and 27th-29th (and in the west around dusk on those days). For gardeners, the 1st-5th and the 23rd-30th are the best sowing days (waxing moon ascending). The best pruning days are 9th-20th (waning moon descending). For longer shelf-life for crops, harvest on the 15th which is neap day. Allow 24-hour error for all forecasting. (KEN RING)  PN For future weather for any date, see www.predictweather.com PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020


Ponsonby, 24 Trinity Street

Ponsonby, 93 Vermont Street

For Sale Auction (unless sold prior)

For Sale Auction (unless sold prior)

Westmere, 216 Garnet Road

Grey Lynn, 14 Crummer Road

For Sale

For Sale

Herne Bay, 1/55 Kelmarna Avenue

Grey Lynn, 11 Crummer Road

For Sale

For Sale




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

Residen t ial / Co mmerci al / Rural / P ro pert y Ser v ices


David Hartnell: One minute interview with Liz Gunn Liz Gunn – TV presenter, journalist and one of the nicest people I know; she did a wonderful job presenting Good Morning on TV. Unlike most TV presenters, Liz really cared about her viewers. Do you miss working in TV? I miss the chance to build and participate in a sense of community with people through the medium. With everyone doing their own separate devices now, there’s a lack of coming together which we had in that first year of Good Morning when people across New Zealand would call or fax in with their views and encouragements and it felt – on a lot of mornings – as if we were having a wonderful, nationwide town hall meeting of caring Kiwi souls! That caring and connecting is what I most loved about TV. Tennis has played a big part in your life, why? My uncle, Jack Gunn, was captain of the NZ Davis Cup team and, as a young man, was national champion. We grew up in a tennis household. My father played at least once a week in to his 90s. He was the Over 90s National Champion. When asked by a journo what training he was planning for the event, he replied, “To keep breathing!” Uncle John coached Chris Lewis as a young player and was always heading to Wimbledon each year where the redoubtable Rod Laver would come up to him with, “How ARE you Jack?” on the few occasions I was lucky enough to go with him. In those days there was no high level security and Uncle John would stop over en route in Singapore and pick up duty free whiskey which he then liberally offered to the doorman on the Players’ Stand, so that we could go in and see what they did once they lost a game. The best example was in 1987 seeing Yannick Noah come in to the players’ area, after being knocked out of the tournament, and getting as many players as he could persuade with his wide smile and Gallic charm to start doing shots in an ever more competitive drinking game. Suddenly, tennis players didn’t seem ‘all work and no play’ to me. I’m sure things are much more serious and much more focused at Wimbledon now. I know a bottle of whiskey, and the fact you had played there, wouldn’t get you entry to those secure areas any longer. What was your childhood like? My father married late and I was his second child, later in life, so he was the age of most of my friends’ grandparents. He was active though, and loved to hike on the West Coast especially and, of course, to play tennis with me. He married late because he had gone to fight in WW2 and would not marry until he had built up a career and the funds to pay for a mortgage free house. He simply did not believe in borrowing money. He had experienced the Great Depression as a boy and had been very burnt by that. His big motto which he instilled in me was that privilege breeds responsibility – meaning that the privilege of a good education means that once you start to earn big, it’s crucial to give back to others who are having a hard time in life, to lift them up as well, when you are

10 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020

doing well. I loved that about him. There were many things I loved about his ethos and his courage. I had a very difficult relationship with my mother whose bad back pain was often numbed by alcohol and I have an abiding horror at how much alcohol destroys the fabric of families and how the silent suffering victims of its excesses are so often the little children. Something that you really disapprove of? Selfishness. And those men of whom one hears many stories from broken-hearted women, who are now having middle-age crises and seem willing to abandon their sons or daughters, or to turn their backs on the women who in many cases have given them support for their career-building as well as doing most of the child raising. Those men who are without honour, who just take and move on without taking care of the women who stood by them, sometimes for 25, 30, 40 years. That is going on, on a far bigger scale in society at the moment than is discussed openly. I think it’s why many older women get cancer. The sheer trauma of it all. And it’s wrong and deeply unethical. (DAVID HARTNELL MNZM)  PN


Developing a Sense of


in Parent Teacher Relationships As teacher educators, we are advocates for family-centered education where all parents are accorded deep respect and viewed as partners in the child's education. We are committed to the belief that creating strong parent and teacher relationships are essential for developing a child’s thirst for knowledge and learning. Keep Safe New Zealand!

bearpark.co.nz PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



REID PROPERTY SERVICES A LOCAL PROPERTY SERVICES COMPANY I talked to Eddie Reid, whose property maintenance company has become very successful and popular in Ponsonby over the last half-dozen years. Eddie has a ‘whanau’ approach to his business and has managed to retain all his staff so far. He is supportive of the Government’s lockdown, and praises Jacinda for her handling of this unprecedented pandemic. Tragically, Eddie lost his father during the lockdown and could not attend his tangi in Ruatoria. They Zoomed the funeral to 80 people. I asked Eddie some questions and his answers (somewhat edited) are printed here.

12 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020


Remind our readers what services your company provides. Our business comprises builders, painters, gib stoppers, electricians and plumbers. We have been servicing Ponsonby for eight years. Have you been able to retain all your staff during the lockdown? Yes. Thanks to the Government wage subsidy, businesses like mine can support our staff. For Jacinda to make the big decisions she has made makes me proud to be a New Zealander. Tell us about the challenges facing small businesses during this pandemic. Once Level 4 lockdown was announced, our work flow stopped. As a business owner that is catastrophic and stress levels go up. My first thoughts were my crew. My business is based on whanau values. My staff’s morale and mental health were my main priority. Our weekly Zoom meetings with the crew were new, but have been fun. We’ve laughed and joked even though we have been unsure what the future holds. What advice or suggestions would you offer to other local businesses? Believe we’ll be back to normal soon. Plan now with key staff for the future. Keep your normal routines as much as you can – emails, phone calls to clients. Any other thoughts for our community? We must come together in our community, supporting each other, cafes, restaurants – buy local, holiday local. Reacquaint with neighbours, friends and family. The most heartbreaking thing about this lockdown has been losing my dad, who died in Ruatoria, and I couldn’t go to his tangi. We Zoomed it, which was helpful for family and friends. I’d like to mention some of my clients who have continued to support me. Aaron and Imogen from Damerell Property Group, Cassidy Construction, Nate and his team from Box Build, and local home owners who continue to request quotes for when we come out of lockdown. We will get through this. Eddie Reid is a positive and optimistic local businessman whose attitudes and values echo those of thousands of New Zealanders who are facing up to this unprecedented pandemic. If all New Zealanders think and behave like Eddie, with kindness, love and humility for our fellow humans, we will come out of this even stronger than we went into it. (JOHN ELLIOTT)  PN Call Eddie for a quote on M: 021 062 9104.




Real community spirit breaking out in Ponsonby In a concerted move that may see a long overdue diminution of selfish individualism, we, in Ponsonby, are seeing an unprecedented level of community cooperation breaking out. I have been walking around my neighbourhood every day since lockdown began, keeping mostly very close to home as instructed by our inspirational leader, local and Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern. I have had more ‘hellos’, ‘good mornings’ and brief, socially distanced chats than in 30 years living here. People need each other. We are gregarious animals. And now, under Level 3, through many ingenious re-inventions, many Ponsonby businesses are offering contactless service which has proved incredibly popular. I spoke to a friend who stopped to chat as she cycled past my front gate. She told me how their family of four had just loved being able to have takeaways again. Each family member had a choice, and so for four nights they had take-outs from local restaurants. She enthused about the food and the service. One restaurant was so busy their food was 30 minutes later arriving than they had ordered. The delivery person was so apologetic, had extras with the order, and a personal note from the proprietor. My friends were so impressed.

Just a couple of hundred metres up the road from my home, Five Loaves has a contactless structure outside for pickup orders. It’s so impressive you could just about live in it. A builder friend of Five Loaves’ owner, Michael Riordan, discussed it with his friend last Friday night. By Saturday morning it was built and ready to go. This morning, as I walked past, there was a brisk trade in coffees going on, with the contactless structure quickly becoming a major local landmark. A number of local businesses have done so well they have declared that they have ‘almost made a profit’. The plan for most has been about service, positioning them for the time when they can fully open up again. Portion sizes have unanimously been declared ‘very generous’, and quality has been declared ‘exceptional’. Viv Rosenberg, GM of Ponsonby Business Association, is very excited with the ingenious ways business has been transacted in such trying circumstances. She told Ponsonby News how impressed she has been with the service and the quality of food her family has eaten from local restaurants.

Garden Party are sending out local Ponsonby website orders for free Armando at Gusto Ponsonby offering takeaways of their delicious pizzas

14 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



The council, too, has worked closely with a lot of inner city businesses over the last two weeks to ensure premises are safe and hygienic and to help them facilitate takeaway and delivery service. As Viv Rosenberg told Ponsonby News, Ponsonby is “virtually open”. She also told us, “The sense of community, love and passion has always been strong in Ponsonby, but now more so than ever. “Businesses have worked hard to adapt to the changing landscape and our community is supporting them. There is no doubt it will be a long, hard road back to the ‘new normal’ but I am confident that with all those positive attributes our community has displayed, we can do it.” The ‘I Love Ponsonby’ website, which is bright and user friendly, lists 102 food and coffee outlets, 79 fashion related businesses, and 53 other retailers open for on-line orders and contactless delivery. You can view and shop at your favourite retailer or restaurant via their new directory. Let’s keep this positive, kind, community cooperation and togetherness going and prospering, long after Covid-19 has been eliminated. It will do wonders to our self esteem and our wellbeing. ‘Stay local, shop local’ has never had so much gravitas. (JOHN ELLIOTT)  PN www.iloveponsonby.co.nz

Five Loaves has a contactless structure outside for pickup orders

Strange times – a Covid-19 lockdown update from Christine Hart, President Ponsonby U3A The April meeting of Ponsonby U3A was cancelled due to the Covid-19 Level 4 lockdown. At this stage it is not known when it will be possible to meet again. Members had been looking forward to hearing the April guest speaker, Jenny Lynch, talking about the changing face of magazine journalism from 1957-1994. With recent major changes in the magazine publishing industry, it is hoped that she may be able to speak to U3A at a later date. Similarly, the May speaker Wayne Brittenden, has been deferred. He was to have talked about his life as a foreign correspondent. Hopefully he will also be available at a later date. He is well known locally for his wide range of interests and activities, including vintage films and philosophy. It is not certain when we will be able to convene a general meeting featuring the next speaker from the amazing line-up we have for the rest of the year. Not to be deterred by lockdown and Alert Level 3, we have been beavering away and learnt the intricacies of Zoom meetings. We are pleased to report that we have 14 of our 25 special interest groups up and running via Zoom. Our members have thrown themselves into learning new skills and thinking of different ways to enable their respective groups to engage our members. Special interest groups are the lifeblood of Ponsonby U3A. We like to think there’s something for everyone. Thankfully, through these groups we are able to continue our role in the community of enabling people to make new friends, to learn more skills and knowledge and to impart learning to others. There’s little chance of feeling isolated, lonely, bored or helpless when you join and engage with Ponsonby U3A. You’ll enjoy the speakers and groups it offers.

If you are interested in joining at this time, contact details are below, and even though we are ‘in recess’ so to speak, we can join you up and guide you to become part of one or more of our groups. When life returns to normal after the Covid-19 crisis passes, we will again hold our monthly meetings at the St Columba Centre in Vermont Street, Ponsonby. We meet on the second Friday morning of the month. There is a guest speaker at each meeting as well as a 10-minute speaker from the U3A membership. The special interest groups meet between the monthly meetings, in private homes and other venues. The groups include antiques and collectibles, architecture, armchair travellers, art history, Bijou Home Cinema, concert going, current affairs, dining out, drawing, family history, Garnet Station Tiny Theatre, gallery visits, green fingers, history, Maori language, music appreciation, New Zealand history, petanque, poetry, public art, ramblers, science, scrabble and ukulele sing-a-long. We look forward to holding our monthly meetings again and meeting new members. Meanwhile, thanks to Zoom, many of us are still connecting. ENQUIRIES: Christine Hart, President Ponsonby U3A. M: 021 289 5514, www.u3a.nz PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



It’s a team effort... we couldn’t do it without our contributors CLARE CALDWELL


Clare (Claudie) Caldwell is a creative arts therapist and freelance artist. She also runs a voluntary art and art therapy programme at Auckland City Mission.

I have a keen interest in nutritional medicine and how it may be used to support people with chronic illnesses.



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

I am the founder of Ponsonby News and write for the magazine. My career has included politics, education and publishing. My interests include the environment, the economy and social justice.





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

Writer/researcher/coach. Writing and the sea are my happy places. I bow down to natural medicine and animals. My philosophy: love and kindness.


I work as a booker, promoter and festival programmer. Active in all areas of the music community; folk music is my specialty.

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

I’ve been a freelance writer for a year now, and what I love most are the wonderful people I’ve meet along the way. #best job.


I’m the local Member of Parliament for Auckland Central including Waiheke and Great Barrier Island. National Party spokesperson for Education and Sport and Recreation.







I am a veteran writer and editor and run two websites – Witchdoctor and Doctor Feelgood – focusing on my interests in music, technology, and the wellbeing of the planet and its denizens.

More than a nature photographer, I am a storyteller, a visual narrator and environmentalist who seeks out bird stories begging to be told.

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.

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

I am Councillor for Waitemata- and Gulf ward on Auckland Council. Formerly, Chair WaitemataLocal Board.

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.

Join us on Sundays at 2pm... for our weekly service including demonstrations of clairvoyance and afternoon tea.

25 New North Road, Eden Terrace / www.goldenlight.org.nz

16 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020




For marketing strategies that work in all markets. Call me for a confidential conversation.

Luke Crockford

021 277 8565 luke.crockford@bayleys.co.nz





Richard Northey: Waitemata Local Board Chair The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed the work and daily lives of us all. For the Waitemata Local Board, it has meant a lot of work for both board members and board staff. The board office has been closed until further notice and all our work and most of our daily activities are now being done from our homes. As I can’t go to the YMCA, I am keeping fit doing the Les Mills exercises every day at 9am on TV1. I can still be contacted at M: 021 534 546 or richard.northey@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz and the staff at waitematalocalboard@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz We are now having board members and staff meeting each other by Skype. Our frequent meetings with other groups and individuals are happening by phone, Zoom and Microsoft Teams. Our April business meeting was postponed to 5 May as well as holding the normal 19 May business meeting. These have been moved to the Town Hall, as it contains meeting rooms large enough to contain all interested members of the public but at a physically safe distance from each other. If the COVID-19 level remains too high for face to face meetings, we have new legislation allowing us to meet by Skype, and we are organising for those public deputations giving notice to submit to us by this means. We will concentrate on urgent and vital business, so some issues may need to be delayed until the COVID-19 crisis is over. We know that the pandemic has limited your lives, threatened your incomes and placed severe stress on households. Please be kind, understanding and patient with each other as we now all need to recover well from this pandemic. The ban on using play and exercise equipment or touching park seating is all purely to stop the spread of the virus, which survives on such surfaces for three days. Similarly, the ban on boating, long car drives and other potentially risky activities is to keep medical and emergency services free to deal effectively with eliminating the virus. The Waitemata Local Board members continue to receive messages from members of the public concerned about the sudden closure of the Leys Institute Library and Gymnasium. I and the other board members are strongly opposed to demolishing or selling the

18 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020

buildings. The board made an urgent decision to lease premises for the library at 14 Jervois Road for three years. The Little Leys Library will open with the same hours and at the same time as the other council libraries. The council is ensuring the old buildings are cleaned, maintained and protected. Council staff are researching how best to restore these buildings and the services they provided. This is complex work and the options for doing this work will be presented to us in public at our business meeting on 16 June. We very much hope that these beautiful buildings can be restored to their former glory and to public use. We have been engaging actively with the community about our proposed Annual Budget and Local Board Plan, which is part of the Council Annual Plan consultation. Because the impacts of COVID-19 have reduced council income by $450 million, even with a 3.5% rate rise there will be substantial cuts to the infrastructure projects, maintenance and services provided by the council. Provided these projects stack up, I believe, as does the Government and most business organisations, that we should maintain services to keep people in jobs and aid the recovery of businesses whose survival is otherwise very much at risk. We are concerned that cuts may result in the postponement or cancellation of the Ponsonby Park project at 254 Ponsonby Road and cuts in valued council services, which we will certainly advocate to retain on your behalf. We are very much aware that some people will find it difficult to pay their rates this year. However, council has developed policies for postponement and rebates to help, and people in this situation should not hesitate to contact council to apply for this relief. Council is also providing food parcels and advice for those who have unexpectedly lost their income. Phone 0800 22 22 96 if you need this. (RICHARD NORTHEY) ď Ł PN Contact Richard Northey, Chair of the Waitemata Local Board, northeyr@xtra.co.nz, facebook.com/waitemata



Nikki Kaye: COVID-19 and Rebuilding our country The last 5 weeks have been some of the busiest of my life helping people throughout New Zealand deal with devastating situations as a result of COVID-19. I have worked around 18 hour days around the clock to help thousands of constituents and businesses in need. My work has involved helping people in my portfolios of education and sport and recreation get support where possible. It was not our preference to reduce the functions of our Parliament to the extent to which has occurred. We made this clear to the Government. After some discussion we agreed to have a select committee to enable the Opposition to provide a check on the executive. My electorate office was not able to be physically open but I was able to with my staff work remotely. The combination of the decision for Parliament to be significantly reduced, the media challenges, the significant police powers and the reduced role of the courts is something in my view we need to reflect on. It is crucial that in times of a National emergency our democracy is as strong as ever and I share some of the concerns expressed by constituents and constitutional experts on these issues. I have spent many days on the phone or via email communicating with businesses, community organisations or individuals in a lot of distress. I am helping more and more people in hardship and people struggling with mental health issues. Through my electorate work I am proud of the several thousand phone calls I have made with volunteers to check in on people and help people get access to food or social support where needed.

I spoke to Heart of the City recently about the release of their report on potential job losses in the city centre. Unfortunately the analysis matches up with what I am hearing from businesses in Auckland central. I hope that the projected 12000 job loss does not eventuate. We need to be realistic that the scale of the response to COVID-19 is massive in terms of economy and social harm. The wage subsidy has helped some businesses and people are grateful for that. However, a number of other businesses have costs that they incurred due to the lockdown and are earning no money and have additional outgoings. We are being constructive and I have written the mayor and ministers around additional rates and rent relief. National has proposed a business support package which involves gst refunds and loans. We supported the lockdown but we need to see the cost benefit analysis of prolonged restrictions that are out of step with countries like Australia. They have had similar health outcomes but have not taken as much a hit on their economy. I wish we could never have had COVID-19 given the loss of life, illness, the loneliness, domestic violence and wealth and job destruction. At times I have been struck by two different types of bubbles one where life is ok and people are having a bit of a break and another type of bubble which involves people’s lowest points of their life.

National supported lockdown to flatten the curve but people are quite fairly asking the question about the social and economic costs of each day that we have had effectively large scale shut down of our economy. People are quite rightly asking whether there is an alternative strategy that prevents as much illness as possible while not wrecking our economy. We do recognise and understand that we are dealing with imperfect information and the situation is continually evolving. This was an incredibly difficult situation for any Government to deal with. In my view it is really important to acknowledge the work of the Government, the Prime Minister, public servants and people and businesses to flatten the curve. Thank you to all those involved in the response including our medical workers, our grocery workers, our teachers and all other essential staff keeping our country afloat during this period.

My experience is that emergencies can bring out the best and worst in people. We will rise again just like we did after the Canterbury Earthquakes. We will get through this. NZ has lots of space, low disease at the moment, lots of food, a strong democracy and people with a can do attitude. We were born into one of the greatest countries on the planet. We will need to continue to be resilient and positive and charitable to those in need. Kia Kaha. (NIKKI KAYE)  PN

However, we must continue to evolve our thinking and strategy as new information becomes available. In my view it is important for the Government to clarify if our country strategy is total elimination and what is the expected time period for this and if this is the plan how do we achieve ongoing “elimination”? If we have an ANZAC bubble then how does this work in terms of the management of disease? There are good debates going on in Australia about their countries strategy. Australian Minister Greg Hunt has described their government’s policy is “containment and suppression” with “this goal of effective eradication, but without ever being able to promise that any country could completely do that”. It is my view that a lot of people supported flattening the curve. There is a real need for the Government to be very clear about the weighing up of all the social, health and economic costs.

Auckland Central My office is here for you, contact me anytime

One thing that there appears to be some consensus on is the need for fast contact tracing and good testing including community surveillance testing. The Government has announced some initiatives in this area and we must continue to improve contact tracing and testing. It will also be important to ensure we invest and consider our role in vaccine production and access. Some people have questioned whether the Opposition should even ask questions about COVID-19 and the Governments response. In my view it would be negligent not to do this. It is important that we have a robust debate about our ongoing country strategy as it will impact us for generations if we get this wrong. We also need to learn the lessons from this pandemic so that in a global community we can improve the global response. As we likely move into level 2 we need to focus on the rebuild of our country. This rebuild must ensure our economic engines of more than 400,000 small businesses are well supported to help power us through. We need to ensure we are building a diversified and more resilient economy. It is my view that education and technology must play a major part in both the social and economic recovery.

nikki.kaye@parliament.govt.nz www.nikkikaye.co.nz Authorised by Nikki Kaye MP, 48C College Hill, Auckland.

09 378 2088 • nikki.kaye@parliament.govt.nz NikkiKayeMP • nikkikaye Healthline’s COVID-19 number - 0800 358 5453 NZ’s free counselling helpline phone or text 1737 Need to talk? Ministry of Social Development - 0800 559 009 Inland Revenue - 0800 775 247 Auckland Council - 09 301 0101 Healthline’s non-coronavirus number - 0800 611 116 IRD for details of COVID-19 Tax Relief www.ird.govt.nz/covid19 Hon Nikki Kaye MP for Auckland Central

Funded by the Parliamentary Service. Authorised by Nikki Kaye MP, Parliament Buildings, Wellington.




Pippa Coom: An emergency budget for extraordinary times We are in incredibly challenging times dealing with the Covid-19 crisis and there is no doubt the economic downturn is going to continue hitting hard across our businesses and communities. We are in incredibly challenging times dealing with the Covid-19 crisis and there is no doubt the economic downturn is going to continue hitting hard across our businesses and communities. In Auckland, the worst hit industries of accommodation and food services have had a 95% reduction in active employment during the lockdown. Fortunately, it does increasingly look like the ‘go hard, go early’ strategy led by the Ministry of Health is working and indications are that we will soon be moving from Alert Level 3 to Level 2. Although there is a lot of uncertainty regarding the economic recovery, we know there won’t be a return to ‘normal’ any time soon. The draft 2020-21 annual budget that was consulted on prior to the lockdown, proposed a 3.5% rates increase. We now need a new emergency budget that responds to these extraordinary times. At the Emergency Committee meeting on 16 April Councillors were unanimous in council taking decisive steps to reduce the pressure on residents and businesses facing economic hardship, while ensuring we can protect and maintain the essential services Aucklanders rely on. There will be another round of consultation including the option of limiting any rise to 2.5%. For the average ratepayer, a 2.5% increase would be equivalent to an extra $1.35 per week, while a 3.5 % increase would be $1.83 per week. It is very valid to ask why a rates freeze is not on the table. It comes down to the fact that cutting rates will potentially end up costing ratepayers more, jeopardize council services and projects at a critical time and will slow down Auckland’s recovery. There is going to be a substantial reduction in non-rates revenue caused by the recession. Development contributions and fees make up 53% of council’s income. The potential loss of revenue is $350$650m for 20/21 depending on the length of disruption caused by Covid-19. The credit rating agencies have allocated Auckland Council an AA/Aa2 rating. This enables council to borrow for capital projects at attractive interest rates, for longer time periods, and means there is no shortage of those wishing to invest. Our financial policy is to limit our debt to revenue ratio to 270%, although internally we manage to a 265% ratio to give ourselves a buffer. Lowering income could potentially put this at risk. The outcome would be higher interest rates, reduced funding abilities and shorter timelines for debt renewals.

20 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020

All these add up to very real costs which would be to the detriment of ratepayers, both now and well into the future. A 1% increase in rates equals $17 million in additional income. 3.5% equates to $59 million net. A 1% increase in interest rates equates to around $100 million of additional interest costs. A single notch credit rating downgrade would cost council approximately $15 million every year in additional interest costs. A $59m revenue loss of revenue also means $600m of capital investment in infrastructure that council will be unable to make over 10 years.

Photography: Liz Allen

Ponsonby Road during lockdown

Even at a 3.5% rates rise there will be substantial cuts to the infrastructure projects, maintenance and services provided by the council. This work is already underway with many temp or contracted staff have been given notice. At the same time, council has already driven savings of $270 million in operational expenses. $62 million of additional savings are budgeted for this year. All opportunities to cut spending still need to be reviewed from across the council family. The CEO and senior executives have voluntarily agreed to pay cuts. The Emergency Committee agreed to consult on targeted measures including suspending the Accommodation Provider Targeted Rate and the broadening of council’s rates postponement policy. We also announced more help to ratepayers and businesses who may be struggling to pay their rates in the financial year to 30 June – anyone who is facing difficulty can contact council on 09 301 0101. I believe we have taken a principled-based approach with a strong commitment to financial prudence and sustainability. An austerity budget based on a zero rates rise will hit our most vulnerable communities hardest and limit council’s ability to play a key role in working with Government to promote economic recovery. I think targeted assistance to ratepayers suffering financial stress makes more sense. Consultation on the Emergency Budget 20/21 budget is due to start by the end of May for three weeks. The consultation material will provide a clear explanation of what each rating option will mean for council services and infrastructure. Please take the time to review the options and provide feedback. (PIPPA COOM)  PN I’m working from home and can be contacted at pippa.coom@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz or on 021 926 618. PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH (except January)


John Elliott: Effects of the pandemic and looking ahead Covid 19 is not the first worldwide pandemic, but it is the worst for more than one hundred years. The Spanish flu of 1918/20 killed fifty million people, including many New Zealanders. One of my great aunts succumbed to it. Through good Government management, we appear on the verge of total elimination in New Zealand, while many countries are still being ravaged. The US and the UK have been badly hit. I have a son and two granddaughters in London and fear for their health. Africa is on the edge of a serious outbreak, South America is seriously threatened and, most worrying of all, Singapore is suffering from a second wave, having supposedly stamped it out. It’s nowhere near over yet. New Zealand seems to be doing well. New cases are few, we have not had too great a death toll, and the Government is looking to cautiously open NZ Inc for business again. The roads are quiet, pollution is way down. We heard moreporks calling to each other a few nights ago, and other birds are chirping away in an otherwise almost silent city. The quietness has given time for thought and contemplation and for random acts of generosity. Our front porch has been adorned with figs, feijoas, veggie plants, a bottle of wine and chocolates left at the door by kind family, friends and neighbours. Each was a gesture greatly appreciated and enjoyed. Many thanks – you know who you are. This is a time to survive and plan how to thrive when the lockdowns are lifted. It is a time to think, not just quickly return to our bad old ways. What matters most in life? It’s certainly not money, unless you’re at the bottom of the economic ladder. Then you need more help. What will the new normal look like? If we revert to mindless consumerism and selfish individualism, ignore the planet that sustains us, but is under such stress, and refuse to take the essential steps towards genuine sustainability, we will not only have missed a golden opportunity, but we will probably have said goodbye to our earthly home – at least as we know it now.

We have an opportunity and a Government who can, and hopefully will, take urgent steps on inequality, poverty and climate change. Jacinda has said she will not sacrifice our health and wellbeing on the altar of GDP. New Zealand has a very low debt to GDP ratio by world standards, thanks to prudent fiscal management by successive governments of both political stripes. It was always said that National looked after our finances better than Labour. That theory has been debunked in recent history. Michael Cullen was a careful financial manager under Helen Clark, as was Bill English under John Key and Jim Bolger. Our debt to GDP was set by the Labour-led Government to be limited to 20%. It has since crept up to nearer 25%, but remains very low when you consider that Australia’s is 47%, China’s 51%, Germany’s 64%, the US 82%, the UK 89%, and Japan a whopping 253% debt to GDP. The United Nations has declared 60% to be a ‘prudential’ level. Thus, New Zealand could borrow billions more before hitting unacceptable levels of debt. However, our private debt, mainly in housing, is very high. Grant Robertson has made a good start, and looks destined to continue the good financial management record of his immediate finance predecessors. He has, however, the scope to borrow more to level the bumpy and uneven playing field that is New Zealand. I think he will. Let’s hope the pandemic dies away, that the September election takes place as scheduled, and that Labour and the Greens are given a well deserved second term. They will have plenty to do. (JOHN ELLIOTT)  PN




Jason Trowbridge’s secret hobby Jason Trowbridge is a well-known face around Ponsonby. He has been doing real estate deals for 28 years. But what many don’t know is that Jason has a secret. He’s a keen bee lover and when time allows he gets busy making his own honey. What motivated you into producing your own honey – how did you learn? Years ago, I lived in a Spear grass flat in Queenstown and was fascinated with the beehives that were scatted around various paddocks of local farms.

in the world, bees are crucial for food production, human livelihoods and biodiversity. Unfortunately, bees are declining in abundance in many parts of the world due to climate change and many various pollutants.

A weekend course was the beginning here in Ponsonby about six years ago. My exact words were “Oh, I am busy just drop a few hives off and I will learn on the run..” No – big mistake! After the weekend course, I said “Ah, yes. please, one hive.” And that’s how it started. You need some knowledge and desire and you need to have a proactive not reactive mind set.”

Bees play a crucial role in the Earth’s ecosystem. They are essential for biodiversity, as they have a symbiotic relationship with flowering plants, and they are an important part of the food chain. They pollinate plants and trees, crops that we rely on as food sources, and the cotton we wear against our skins. It’s even thought that they contribute to reducing exhaust fumes in cities by filtering them out of the atmosphere.

Is it dangerous? Have you ever been stung? Yes, only once but it was actually a bee that crawled up my trouser leg, not much you can do. They are insects of adventure and, yes, I was stung but it’s really no more than a pin prick as long as you are not allergic. Which thankfully I am not. How do you harvest the honey? I choose to harvest my honey in a natural, relaxed way removing full honey trays and cutting the wax with the honey. Do you supply to any retail outlets? It is illegal in New Zealand to sell honey that is not extracted in a commercial registered kitchen and I have no desire to sell it. I enjoy giving it as gifts to my friends and family. Bess are an awesome part of natural life, another added bonus is that all my fruit trees and berries are laden with fruit as the bees pollinate the entire garden along with many neighbours’ gardens in the area. Could climate change lead to the extinction of bees? As one of the most important pollinators

22 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020

Left to themselves, bees are harmless creatures, busy running the hive in their various allocated roles, working all day long and serving and protecting the queen bee. All they need from you is a safe base to come back to at the end of a working day, and in return for this you get to watch the fascinating way in which these insects work together. The bee dance is simply amazing to witness first-hand. When you ‘keep’ bees in this manner, you come to realise that these humble, hardworking insects keep the natural order of things buzzing in a way that humans can only partially understand, but that we can certainly learn to appreciate more. Have you ever used the phrase ‘the bee’s knees’ to describe something of high quality or excellence? Such is the world of the bees. When you become a backyard beekeeper, you open up a complex, beautiful facet of the natural world. And you’ll never want to look back. PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH (except January)


Leys Institute Library Update – May 2020 As you will know, Leys Institute Little Library did not open as planned in March at the new site 14 Jervois Road, Ponsonby. To prevent the spread of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) all Auckland Libraries were closed end of Friday 20 March. Soon after, the entire country went to Level 4 Lockdown. However, libraries have been working behind the scenes to support our customers online. Learning in lockdown We have some great online resources for you and your kids. Perhaps you have decided now is a great time to upskill. Well, check out www.lynda.com on the library website www.aucklandlibraries.govt.nz There are 3500 online courses, with everything from Instagram marketing to data analytics, self-help and computer skills. To help support kids’ learning we have a range of databases. World Book for Kids and CultureGram are both useful resources for homework help. And for younger children there is Tumble Math with fun, maths-themed audio picture books and quizzes. Auckland Libraries online Choose from thousands of eBooks, browse curated book lists, listen to your favourite eBook, learn a new language, browse more than 800 magazine

titles, stream films, explore Auckland’s heritage and much more. Available online anytime, anywhere. All free with your library card. If you don’t have a library card and would like to access our wonderful resources, you can sign up online today. It’s free, quick and easy and gives you instant access to Auckland Libraries online. Take a look here for a full list of only library services. Book Chats recommendation We have two books for you this month. ‘Diamond Doris: The True Story of the World’s Most Notorious Thief’ is the memoir of Doris Payne, the beautiful, glamorous, world-class jewel thief, who came from poor, difficult beginnings. Her book has been described as ‘an engaging read by an elegant, modern-day Robin Hood’. The second book we would like to recommend is Robert Harris’ latest ‘The Second Sleep’. This book begins in 1468 and initially you could be fooled into thinking this is like Harris’ other historical novels, but it’s not. It’s an apocalyptic thriller that bends time. Stay safe everyone. We look forward to seeing you again.  PN The team at Leys Institute Little Library, www.aucklandlibraries.govt.nz

Update from Friends of Leys Institute Membership of the Friends of Leys Institute group continues to steadily grow, even in this uncertain time when our thoughts are focused more on our families and homes, rather than issues in our wider community. Recent requests for membership have come from groups that meet at the Leys Institute, namely from the Leys Orchestra and the Leys Institute Classic Film Club. The Leys Orchestra was founded in 1905 and has taken different forms over the years – it has been a brass band and boys’ band before becoming a community orchestra. It rehearses weekly and gives three free concerts a year, with participation in the annual Heritage Festival its major event. The current core of around 30 players enjoy exploring, rehearsing and performing predominately music from the light classical repertoire, along with items from their large collection of scores donated over the years from other groups that no longer perform, comprising a unique collection in Auckland. A new Friends of Leys Institute member, and longtime orchestra participant, Bryony Jagger, says how important the orchestra is: “The Leys Orchestra has played several of my orchestral pieces… they have also supported other New Zealand composers for years. I have learned a lot about writing for orchestras as a result... community orchestras are the only ones who deign to play music by New Zealand composers, in my experience.” The Leys Orchestra director and conductor is David Brittain. For more information about the orchestra, see its Facebook page ‘Leys Orchestra’ and website at leysorchestra.webs.com The Leys Institute Classic Film Club has screened films free of charge to library patrons since 2018. The screenings were held in the library’s downstairs Reading Room. The film club’s brochure indicates the scope of the films

covered: ‘famous, influential and entertaining masterpieces of cinema from the Twentieth Century’. Four themed series of films were covered each year, with six films per series being screened over six consecutive Saturdays. For instance, the themes in 2019 were as follows: Screwball Comedies, French Classics, Legendary Documentaries, Film Noir. Despite the closure of the Leys Institute in December 2019, those on the club’s mailing list have been informed that its screenings will continue in 2020, though obviously this cannot now occur until after the lockdown has ended. No venue for the screenings has yet been announced, though attendees have been assured that it will be located somewhere in the Ponsonby area. Friends of Leys Institute is sending updates to members as any information becomes available from the Waitemata Local Board. Keep checking the Facebook page entitled ‘Friends of Leys Institute’. Anyone interested in becoming a member of Friends of Leys Institute can email co-ordinator Helen Geary at heleng@maxnet.co.nz PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



New Principal at Freemans Bay School John Elliott talks to Cindy Walsh about her new role. You have come back to Ponsonby with very high wraps. How has it been coming back ‘home’ to work and live close by? I have lived in the Ponsonby community for over 20 years and it’s a community I love and have a strong interest and investment in. I loved my 12 years at Takapuna Primary School as Principal and frequently encouraged teachers and staff members to be brave and embrace opportunities that come along. It was time I paid heed to my own advice and so I applied for the Principal position at Freemans Bay School. I had a long-held admiration for the leaders and school community because of its inclusive culture, for its leading position in future-focused, innovate education and for its commitment to Te Tiriti o Waitangi. I felt it would be a privilege to support in the sustaining of this great practice and lead the future change that education would bring in this amazing school. An added bonus was being able to walk to work and therefore do my bit for the environment that I am passionate about caring for, along with keeping fit and healthy and connecting more closely with nature at the beginning and end of my day.

Are the brand new Freemans Bay School buildings living up to their hype as a wonderful 21st Century learning environment? Absolutely! What a privilege to work in such a stimulating, enriching and engaging learning environment. Well done to the Ministry of Education, RTA Architects, Watts & Hughes Construction, Sandy the visionary leader before me and the brave, creative and forwardthinking Board of Trustees, staff and community. Research shows that the learning environment does matter and that there is a strong link between the design of the spaces in which young people learn and better learning outcomes. It is inspiring to

24 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020

work in a space that further enhances and enables our commitment to the 21st Century pedagogies of digital and collaborative learning.

Please tell PN readers some of the things you and your staff have been doing with students during the lockdown. What have been some of the highs and lows? Student, parent and staff wellbeing has been at the heart of the decision making around our design for learning in the home. We have some basic principles/goals that have guided us. • To provide structure, routine and a daily personal connection between children and teachers, which will support children’s wellbeing. • To provide simple, uncomplicated tasks that are manageable for children and families. • To set challenges that are fun, engaging and promote supportive relationships in the home. • To set learning opportunities that are creative and based on the experience of being in the home. Some important components of this have been the daily face-toface connection with the teachers and students through audioconferencing and the feedback gathered from students and families about what is working well and what isn’t, so we can be responsive to this. Schools have been presented with an authentic opportunity to look at learning and the curriculum differently. PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH (except January)

LOCAL NEWS I am just so proud of the enthusiasm, creativity and wonder with which my teachers embraced this opportunity and highlighted for me the optimism, hope and care that is prevalent in the education world. One sad thing for me is the further highlighting of the inequities in our education system and I can only hope this is a catalyst for some serious policy progress around this in the future.

You have many less than affluent families in your catchment. What have been the technology challenges? Has it prevented some students from benefiting from distance learning? About a week before we went into Alert Level 4 we surveyed our community to find what students did not have access to a device and the internet. We then distributed around 40 school laptops to students who needed them in the two days leading up to lockdown to ensure equity. We also promoted the home-learning TV channels, digital safety, breaking up on-line time with physical activity and art/craft, and some hard-pack resources (books/activities) were also sent home for our younger students. It was helpful having dedicated IT staff members that whanau and staff could connect with if they were having technical difficulties or challenges when interacting with the on-line platforms.

Do you think we should return to Level 3 asap? How should we weigh up the health of our people versus the health of the economy? The health of our people is the most important thing to consider and I think the Government is doing an exceptional job at holding this at the forefront of decision making. We will be going to Alert Level 3 in the very near future and I feel so good about being able to contribute to the health of the economy by partially opening our school to those families who, due to the nature of their business, cannot work from home and so need their children

cared for at school. Some say this is ‘babysitting’ and I say, yes it is and bring it on. I embrace the fact that our school can help care for our young people and families and contribute to our people’s wellbeing.

How are Jacinda, Grant Robertson and education minister Chris Hipkins doing in your estimation? You can be as political or not as you please! I admire these incredible leaders who have remained so calm, confident, well informed, empathetic and committed to the goal of stamping out the virus despite the broad range of perspectives they are barraged with every day. The Ministry of Education has been clear, consistent and responsive in their communication and guidance to schools during this crisis. I feel incredibly lucky to be here in New Zealand receiving the intelligent, empathetic, moral and measured response to this crisis.

What else would you like our readers to know about Freemans Bay School and Cindy Walsh? I am only as good as the people that surround me. I have an amazing team of DPs, teachers, staff, board members and parents that all contribute collaboratively to creating a culture of inclusiveness and an empowering, engaging and enriching community that is Freemans Bay School. I also have a loving and supportive husband and family and friends in the background looking after me so I can be the best I can for such a complex and demanding role. I know I will thrive in this community and I feel incredibly happy to continue to support our beautiful young people to grow into healthy, happy and responsible citizens of our community, of New Zealand and of the world. (JOHN ELLIOTT)  PN www.freemansbay.school.nz PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



Grey Lynn Business Association: Introducing Grey Lynn & Around Tena koutou katoa, Bula vinaka, Fakaalofa lahi atu, Fakatalofa atu, Kia orana, Malo e lelei, Malo ni, Talofa lava. Warm greetings to you all. We’ve been busy at the Grey Lynn Business Association using lockdown to productively review our purpose, priorities and the value we bring to our members, partners, stakeholders and simply the community with live in.

We urge everyone in the hood to join Grey Lynn & Around to build your business and our community. For sole operators, that’s $49 a year to enjoy being part of the movement and take advantage of a whole lot of benefits.

With a big reset, Grey Lynn & Around is a nod to the greater area that we are working in, stretching out into the greater neighbourhood.

Stay safe, be kind, embrace local Our world has changed in ways the majority of us could not have predicted. As we grapple with uncertainty, we must stay optimistic and calm amidst the storm. Stay safe at this time and care for yourselves, your families, loved ones and your community.

Helping your business during the Covid-19 emergency We have been supporting local businesess with information that is relevant to getting through the lockdown and getting back up on our feet as soon as possible. New website We are delighted to invite you to our new-look website www.greylynn-around.com. This is a work in progress and we encourage and welcome your feedback. By the way, we would love you to send us good quality photographs of the hood so we can use these on our website! We are posting daily on our Facebook page, so please make sure you are signed up because there is a lot of useful information, as well as business and community announcements. Your feedback We are currently phoning all our members to get an up to date understanding of how the lockdown is affecting your business, and whether there is anything you’d like us to work on that is helpful for you, or other issues you’d like addressed. It just takes 10 minutes of your time and it’s confidential. We’ll share the results on our Facebook page in a few weeks. Reducing membership fees We recognise that controlling costs is critical to your business right now. For existing members we’ve extended the annual subscription period by three months and reduced subscription rates for the next six months by a minimum of 40%.

More and more businesses will open up as we move from one level to the next. We anticipate a whole range of new contactless options being available and open for trade at Level 3 and near normal at Level 1/2. Some interesting opportunities are also emerging, particularly in the areas of employment – so follow us on Facebook as we post these. Be sure to continue to support our local business hubs. For more info, view our website. And a really big thank you to all those ‘essential’ businesses and services that continued to operate through Level 4. Free business support during Covid-19 Ensure you are up to date with all the official Government information, including tax relief, business and loan refinancing and support for SME’s. We post on these regularly. Regional support is also available through ATEED. Businesses can access free, specialist support for a range of issues they may be currently facing, including business continuity planning, cash flow management and staffing issues. Find out more at www.aucklandnz.com. We also have local support specialists who are part of this scheme.  PN Contact us at Grey Lynn & Around at info@greylynn-around.com

26 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



Ponsonby Park – May 2020 Update In our new Covid-19 reality, many things have changed. Some things have changed for the better, but much for many has changed for the worse. Financial stability has been eroded, life feels a little more precarious and inequities within our community and wider society have been thrown into stark relief. These are indeed difficult times. Our local project of Ponsonby Park, the civic space at 254 Ponsonby Road, seems both insignificant and relevant at this time. Insignificant in that it won’t save any lives, nor ameliorate the pain of those who have lost loved ones. It won’t help with the provision of PPE equipment or hasten the development of a vaccine. Yet Ponsonby Park is relevant because it provides continuity with our pre-Covid19 lives. The Community-Led Design process for the development of 254 Ponsonby Road, delivered the LandLAB Park + concept design and activated literally hundreds of people. It has sustained their engagement and provided a tangible vision of inclusion, diversity and community empowerment. Whilst we have all been in Level 4 lockdown, the Project Control Steering Group (PCSG) has continued their work via virtual meetings. And although the timeline for the commencement of the physical development work of Ponsonby Park has necessarily being interrupted, progress nevertheless continues. The re-zoning process is well underway with no objections received. Five design companies had been invited to submit RFPs (Request For Proposals) before this needed to be postponed as council concentrated on essential services due to Covid-19.

Additionally, council is actively looking for ways to ensure this longawaited and valued community project is achieved. Ponsonby Park was included in the long-list of large ‘shovel ready’ projects drawn up by council for consideration by the Government as suitable infrastructure projects to help re-boot the economy. Ponsonby Park filled the requirements of creating jobs, supporting key trades and providing real public benefit. Unfortunately, it did not make the short-list submitted by council to Government, but as Ponsonby Park is the first ‘One Local Initiative’ (OLI) project ready for council approval and funding, we are confident it will proceed in due course. In our post Covid-19 world, where social connectedness will be even more important and relevant than ever, Ponsonby Park is precisely the infrastructure and amenity that our community wants and needs. As we all find our new way forward, it will be the common ground and the community hubs that enable everyone to reestablish their lives well and with resilience. The vision for Ponsonby Park has always been of a place for people to safely gather, rest, relax and recreate. A place to meet new people or catch up with old friends or to simply spend some time to chill and take a moment. These things are even more important now. Ponsonby Park – bring it on. (JENNIFER WARD)  PN



COVID-SAFE GIFT GIVING @seabreeze.cafe - capsule brunch


MAKING MOTHER’S DAY & BIRTHDAY BUBBLES MEMORABLE Many of us, myself included, have celebrated birthdays in a bubble and now as we head towards Mother’s Day, most of us will be looking for different yet memorable ways to show our mothers we care.

@ Rose Tinted Florist - Biggest is Best bouquet

28 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020


@ Kate Sylvester - Frankie Jacket Ivory

@ Chambers - BLEND Aroma Sticks Duo3 Japanese Yuzu & Island Coconut

@ Mamas Brew Shop Happy Hour Kombucha Gin Cocktail

@ Ruby - Matlda Blazer

@ Sills + Co

- Mar ta Cash

mere V Neck

@ Kura Gallery- Titiro whakamuri, kõkiri whakamua She turns her face to the light. Looking backward to move forward. Pencil and woodstain on recycled kauri

@ Kate Sylvester - Beatrix

If you are a last-minute shopper, don’t despair, many local retailers offer click and collect services so that you can pick up your items just 30 minutes after ordering. In general, Ponsonby News’ readers are a little spoiled for choice with a vast array of fashion, home decor and specialist shops. Local businesses both near and far are ready to go the extra mile and make gift-giving in lockdown as fun and easy as possible. From fine food and wine to fine art and everything in between, there are many click and collect and contactless delivery options that can help make isolation celebrations even more memorable and also support local businesses. While many of us found ways to give simple gifts from supermarkets and pharmacies to mark special birthdays and occasions, we can now have more choice. PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



DINING-IN WITH STYLE Many of our favourite local eateries have found ways to innovate and operate within Alert Level 3. Award-winning Sidart, Cassia and Sid at the French Cafe have been taking orders for contactless delivery since 20 April. Perfect for a birthday celebration. While they aren’t open on Mother’s Day, you can still give your mum a night off cooking with gift vouchers from either Sidart, Cassia and Sid at the French Café which can be redeemed in Level 3 for contactless delivery or pick up or when the restaurant reopens for service.

Having already enjoyed the Wichita Baby Back Ribs Memphis Style with Smokin Col Rub and the 8-hour Beef Cheek with Rum & Que Blackout Rub during ‘at-home’ birthday parties last year, I can thoroughly recommend Smokin Coles as a great birthday take-out option or the perfect way to give mum the night off, especially if you match it with a good, local craft beer. Check out their website for Mother’s Day dinner ideas. A tradition for Mother’s Day is breakfast in bed or brunch out at a favourite cafe. This year, café-style brunch can be delivered to your mother’s door if not her bed. Seabreeze Cafe in Westmere has made enjoying exceptional barista coffee and delicious cabinet food easy for locals while staying Covid-Safe. Many have already enjoyed the great coffee and brioche from Seabreeze which opened on day one

30 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020

@ Hunting Lodge Take Out

For something a little more casual and ‘hands on’, try Smokin Coles BBQ. This BBQ joint in Grey Lynn has been receiving rave reviews since it opened in 2019. Offering slow-cooked BBQ ribs and traditional BBQ meat cuts, Smokin Coles is rich in flavour, fragrance and taste. The talented Croydon Cole has developed a menu that is American inspired and infused with flavours from Aotearoa. Using a mix of pohutukawa and seasoned maple wood to smoke the meat, his range of dishes are mouth-watering taste sensations. of Level 3. For Mother’s Day, they have created a capsule brunch menu that can be ordered up till 5pm on 9 May (the day before Mother’s Day) and will be ready for contactless pick up between 7am and 1pm using the Regulr app The Seabreeze special menu includes Tea smoked salmon bagel: slow roasted tomatoes, horseradish crème fraiche, capers, red onion and dill. Bharta eggs: poached eggs, spiced aubergine puree, whipped yoghurt, chilli butter with sourdough toast. And Coconut Hotcakes: marscapone, lemon curd, fresh berries, coconut. Bread and Butter in Westmoreland St, Grey Lynn offers an incredible array of pastries, artisan breads and divine cafe-style meals that can be picked up (contactless) or delivered to your door if you’re local.


@ Bread and Butter @ Mamas Brew Shop - Kombucha Tasting Box

Especially for Mother’s Day, they have a number of great specials including a very special berry and white chocolate mousse cake, a collection of Mother’s Day shortbread cookies and a box set of freshly baked pastries. Orders for Mother’s Day need to be in by 5pm on Thursday 7 May but do check out the website for all sorts of divine options.

a Spritz, the Happy Hour cocktail is a collaboration between Mama’s Brew Shop and Victor Gin. It’s the perfect drink for every mama wanting to enjoy a little gin during the last of the autumn sunsets.

If you prefer something non-alcoholic, then check out Mama’s Brew Shop. The shop is offering free delivery and a special LOCKDOWN discount code. Their kombucha is raw, organic and crafted using beautiful botanicals, making it the ultimate choice for non-alcoholic drinks. Mama’s Brew Shop also makes the world’s first kombucha cocktail. Described as tasting like something inbetween a Negroni and

@ Smokin Coles BBQ

For those who want to support small local vineyards, Auckland’s Hunting Lodge vineyard offers delivery to Ponsonby and the surrounding suburbs. The vinyard’s array array of wine is amazing and with award-winning chef Des Harris developing their capsule takeaway menu, it will be a complete treat for any mother or birthday boy or girl. Due to cancelled export orders, there are some great bargains to be had, so we recommend you check out their website.

@seabreeze.cafe capsule brunch PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020


Iconic Ponsonby fashion label Kate Sylvester has had its curbside collection service ‘KS Curbside Collect’ ready to go from the start of Level 3 lockdown. Like many local retailers, Kate Sylvester is focused on safety and making sure they have measures in place that strictly adhere to all policies set by the Government. Within the Kate Sylvester current collections are some beautiful pieces perfect for Mother’s Day or special birthday gifts. With gorgeous gift wrapping and packaging, you can order your gift and pick it up from the curbside 30 minutes later. Sills + Co on Jervois Road in Herne Bay is missing seeing customers and has sought to make the online experience as personal as possible. “Keeping it personal has always been key,” says Sales and Marketing Manager Toni Sills. “During Level 3 and particularly 4, our staff were really missing each other, their stores and their customers because they have built such great relationships.” For the team at Sills + Co, it’s been less about selling online and more about reaching out to their community and finding ways to keep people’s spirits lifted. “A lot of our staff kept in touch with their communities by becoming Sills + Co Instagram models! Some staff may have been shy at first, but customers loved seeing what our staff were wearing, and what they were doing at home (particularly Julie’s baking – yum!),” explained Toni. The team have enjoyed a wonderful response from customers to the stories staff shared and this will be part of the communications going forward. “Keeping it local and personal sets us apart from some of the larger international businesses and is our real strength,” says Toni. The Sills + Co team are able to translate the personal touch through phone and online orders making Mother’s Day and birthday gift shopping an easy and wonderful experience. @ Kate Sylvester - Alice

@ Kate Sylvester - Foxy Sweatshirt



32 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020


@ Ruby - Sasha Linen Blouse

@ Sills + Co - Marta Cashmere V Neck

@ Sills + Co - wool cashmere slippers

Some great choices for gifts at any time from Sills + Co include wool cashmere slippers and the Marta cashmere v-neck. Ruby, another Ponsonby Road icon, has also been finding ways to connect with the community and has had overwhelming success with Ruby Sewing classes. Customers could buy and download patterns with illustrated instructions to make some of Ruby’s most classic pieces. Ruby also even offered some live-stream sewing Q&A classes under Alert Level 4.

Whether you want to do a sewing project with your mother to celebrate Mother’s Day or ‘gift’ a friend a Ruby sewing project, it will be a satisfying gift to remember for years to come. Of course, Ruby’s latest collections are full of warm, delicious knitwear, hats and scarves, perfect gifts for mums everywhere. The Matilda ruffle blouse paired with a blazer can take you from the work day into a fun evening. The Zoom meeting to Zoom drinks, making a great present for yourself or a friend. Whether at home or out and about social distancing, Ruby’s Corvette trouser can be dressed up or down and the Matilda trouser can be paired with the Matilda blazer for that ‘suited’ look. The desire to explore your creative side while in your bubble can be a way to manage the enormous change in lifestyle. When we are all so used to ‘shared experiences’, doing most things alone in our bubble can not only take some of the fun out of things, but it can also cause stress. A sewing project, a floral arrangement or painting can all be healthy ways to explore our more creative selves, as well as being a cathartic way to manage change.

@ Ruby - beginner Carol silk slip pattern & dress

The team at Ruby identified just how freeing and satisfying it is to be able to make something for yourself and realised that people in lockdown may have time to learn and explore. They chose their most loved styles to share and allow people who are passionate about learning new things to make their own versions of Ruby classics.




FINE ART & CREATIVE PURSUITS Rose Tinted Florist in Ponsonby Central recognised how nurturing and cathartic it is to do work on a floral arrangement, especially from flowers and foliage foraged from your own garden. As Lockdown Level 4 hit, Rosie from Rose Tinted Florist released a series of online workshops and instructions on how to complete a range of floral masterpieces. While already booked out for Sunday Mother’s Day deliveries, Rosie has opened up other days before and after Mother’s Day so people can still send some floral beauty to their mums. We think mothers deserve a whole week of spoiling this year since so many won’t get to spend face-to-face time with their families, that giving flowers any time during Mother’s Day week will work. Paintvine is another way to let your inner creative loose. You can enjoy learning to paint while drinking wine and sharing the experience with friends and family without leaving your bubble. The fun evening of painting and drinking wine with friends is now an online or on-demand affair and there is even an option for kids. It is the perfect birthday party activity for self isolation or some family Mother’s Day fun.

@ Rose Tinted Florist

@ Rose Tinted Florist - Rose Tinted Flowers and Cake



@ Paintvine Online


@ Paintvine Online - The Wharf

Paintvine sends you out all the gear you need to paint to each of your crew. They set up a time for you to all join on an interactive Zoom or Crowd Cast with their expert artist and you all create masterpieces in the comfort of your own home.

Keating works on recycled native timber and part of her process is to connect with the mauri, the ‘life-force’ inherent in these discarded pieces of wood. “From what once were great ‘toa’ of our forests, children of Tane Mahuta himself, to floorboards, weatherboards, furniture, firewood, they come into my hands. I am only adding to the story, connecting my story, ‘our’ story, ‘her’ story,” explains Keating. There is both beauty, pain and a sense of deeper enduring strength in the women Keating paints and draws. “The wahine I create are very vaguely self-portraits. They reflect what is going on in my life, my family, my community at the time of being made. However, she can be whoever the viewer sees her to be. The viewer will connect with a look, with a feeling and recognise something or someone.” Works by Natasha Keating – the team at Kura Gallery is operating online and on the phone during Alert Level 3 offering both collection and contactless delivery services.

@ Kura Gallery - “Te Marama o Öuenuku / Paengawha-wha-” The fourth moon of the April lunar cycle. A revisit of the Maramataka, the Maori Lunar Calendar

@ Kura Gallery - “Te Kihikihi” a remake of Klimts famous “The kiss” as a celebration of love and connection. Pencil and woodstain on recycled rimu

A contemporary pou from local artist Natasha Keating could be the perfect choice for a memorable gift. For your mother or someone else special. Her paintings and drawings of wahine reflect the place Maori women have in the present, the now, with an eye toward a strong and healthy future.




@ The Garden Party - New Zealand Native Bird cushion covers


There are many wonderful gift and homeware stores throughout Ponsonby and Grey Lynn and most of them have developed customer-centric ways to ensure that Covid-Safe shopping retains a sense of fun and joy. Erin Santoro of Chambers on Ponsonby Road, has been vigilant about keeping staff and customers safe while moving to Alert Level 3. “It’s our highest priority and we are lucky enough to be able to process all our orders completely contactless.

Erin Santoro from Chambers

Chambers’ customers can order via the website or via landline on 09 376 6479 and are even encouraging customers to facetime them on mobile if they want a truly virtual shopping experience. There is nothing better than a gift wrapped by Chambers; just let them know and your gifts will be sent with their exquisite, complementary gift wrapping. “You have to go above and beyond at the moment, making it as easy as possible for customers. Shop local is the only way some of these smaller businesses in Ponsonby will survive. They need local support now more than ever,” says Erin. For mothers, Chambers has everything from warm beanies, stylish scarves and aroma sticks, to t-shirts and handy ‘fitness belts’. For children and best friends, their Rock Your Kid and Rock Your Baby ranges are a great choice for stylish, active kids.

Chambers’ pickups are available 10am-4pm, 7 days per week and we are asking customers to stand at least two metres back from the door when collecting parcels. Erin is happy to provide a free delivery service to locals in our surrounding suburbs from Ponsonby to Point

All @ www.chambersnz.co.nz

36 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020


Chevalier and in between. Part of staying local and buying local is buying New Zealand Made. The Garden Party on Ponsonby road is committed to supporting New Zealand artists, creators and makers and has a wonderful collection of locally designed gifts.

Feather Earrings @ The Garden Party

These include the famous earrings by Ronja of Bureau 55, that Jacinda Ardern wore at a recent media conference. Whether it’s cushions or earrings, Anna Lim and the team at The Garden Party will deliver website orders for free on an e-bike to locals as well as distinctive, free gift wrap and cards.

Of course, we have only scratched the surface of the incredible local businesses that are going the extra mile to keeping customers happy while remaining Covid-Safe. We will be regularly updating our website with great places to shop and innovated options to make the most of life within your bubble. So be sure to check out our website and sign up for our weekly updates. What better way to enjoy a stay-at-home Mother’s Day or birthday weekend than to curl up with a good book and a great bottle of wine.

@ Hunting Lodge

@ Dorothy Butler Chrildren’s Bookshop - ‘My Mama’ by Anne Marie van Haeringen

If you need inspiration for any type of book or reader, The Women’s Bookshop has a range of exceptional suggestions on its website and you can’t go wrong with the online ‘Staff Picks’ on The Dorothy Butler Children’s Bookshop website. One lovely suggestion from owner Helen Wardworth is ‘My Mama’ by Anne Marie van Haeringen. “Little Elephant has his mama wrapped around his little finger (or his little trunk) – well that’s what he thinks. But the illustrations tell a different story. A wonderful story to share with mum,” says Helen.

Stack of books: @ Women’s Bookshop Faves and Raves 2019

Books are always the perfect gift for anyone and everyone anytime and for every occasion. The Women’s Bookshop on Ponsonby Road, and The Dorothy Butler’s Children Bookshop on Jervois Road both offer easy online ordering and The Women’s Bookshop offers contactless pick-up. The Women’s Bookshop drive thru system means your order is delivered directly to your car door. All you need to do is pay over the phone or with internet banking and call them whilst you wait in the Picton Street loading bay and they will run out with your books.




Liz Wheadon: Château Mont-Redon new cuvee Châteauneuf du Pape is a beautiful village and wine appellation in the southern part of the Rhône Valley, France. Situated near Avignon, a walled city that is built around the historical Pope’s Palace, Châteauneuf du Pape is where the Pope would go for summer holidays. Whilst there are a multitude of permitted grape varieties in Châteauneuf du Pape, grenache is king. The variety loving the warmth, the low bush vines and stony soil. Mont-Redon have been in the area since 1842, with the oldest vines found at Mont-Redon dating back to Roman times. Mont-Redon is not only one of the oldest producers in the Rhône, they are also the largest in Châteauneuf du Pape with 165 hectares of land to their name, 100 hectares of which are planted with vines. The winery today has Pierre Fabre at the helm, the fourth generation of the family. Pierre is first and foremost a wine guy. He loves wine and will spend hours talking with you about wine from around the world. It is under his stewardship that Mont-Redon has headed in a qualitative direction which sees them release for the first time this year a flagship Châteauneuf du Pape. Alongside this, Pierre has also taken the winery on an environmental change. They have built their own purifying station and all waste (from the vineyards, the cellar and the Château itself) is treated biologically before being drained on a bed of reeds. Château Mont-Redon was one of the first domaines to both treat its waste and recycle. There is natural air conditioning through the underground cellars, using a passage that their grandfather had created to drain water from the plateau to feed the wells. They have extended it and connected it with the open air, the draught then naturally cooling the cellars to a constant 11C. We have recently landed the 2016 Châteauneuf du Pape from Mont-Redon. 2016 was an excellent vintage, similar in quality to the 2017. The 2017, though, is more vibrant and fresher, the 2016

more concentrated. The blend is 60% grenache, 30% syrah, 8% mourvèdre and 2% other varieties (Mont-Redon are one of only two producers in the Rhône to vinify all the permitted varieties). The grapes come from their three terroirs – the pebbles, the sand and the chalk. From this year, the selection process at Mont-Redon is strict and very particular. After malolactic fermentation, they separated out the weakest batches and put them into a parcel destined to be sold as bulk Châteauneuf du Pape. After racking, they then identified the parcels that were still not good enough and moved them into the bulk pile. Then they moved to the side the parcels that were too different, that were not going to make a harmonious blend. This process resulted in only 50% of the 2016 harvest making it into the Mont-Redon Châteauneuf du Pape. The balance was sold off and will be in someone else’s Châteauneuf du Pape, as it just simply was not good enough for Mont-Redon. The 2016 vintage also marks the introduction of Châteauneuf du Pape Le Plateau. This is made from grapes only grown on the plateau where the pebbles are. It is 100% destemmed and optically sorted (like Château Mont-Redon), with extraction by pigéage. 70% was aged in new barrels and the balance in one and two-year-old barrels for about 18 months. The inaugural Le Plateau is 40% syrah and 60% grenache. The grape varieties in Le Plateau may vary from year to year, but the source of the grapes, from the historical plateau, won’t. We have had the Mont-Redon 2016 Château and Le Plateau arrive recently, both exceptional wines. (LIZ WHEADON)  PN www.glengarry.co.nz

Live Tastings

Introducing our

We’ve got two types of tastings for you to join in: • Via Instagram Live each night • Via Zoom – a full length tasting Pre purchase the wine online and join in

Join us ea ch night as o ur exp e rt team take yo a sele c tion u through o b e e rs to ta f wine s or ste from th e comfort o f your home !

View our full tasting schedule here: www.glengarrywines.co.nz/events


38 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



@ SABATO The cold snap is making us all crave warm and comforting meals to curb the winter blues. Let’s take this opportunity to create something fabulous out of our staple ingredients that will soothe your body, mind and soul. Polenta has been a part of Italian food culture ever since the 16th Century. It is enjoyed with meat, game and fish with accompaniments such as sauces, grilled or roasted vegetables and cheeses. Our La Grande Ruota quick cook polenta is a convenient grain, ready in five minutes! Simply stir through your favourite Sabato pesto or paste along with freshly grated Parmigiano and serve it with your favourite protein for a warm, winter evening meal. Pasta is a long-standing pantry essential in every household. Rustichella is a family company in Abruzzo, Italy. Their pasta is authentic, artisanal, bronze-extruded and slow-dried. Revered by top chefs around the world such as Gordon Ramsay and Heston Blumenthal, Rustichella pasta cooks to a perfect al dente, providing a wonderful texture and great flavour. Channel your inner chef and whip up the perfect risotto with our tasty and healthy Ferron risotto rice. Try our No-Stir Risotto recipe (available on our website) to truly see the miracle this rice can create in your kitchen, making a challenging dish like risotto very easy to make! Available in two varieties, Carnaroli or Vialone Nano, Ferron rice is grown and milled just outside of Verona and is conveniently dairy and gluten free. Shop online and take advantage of our nationwide delivery or no-contact pickup options. ď Ł PN SABATO, 57 Normanby Road, Mt Eden, T: 09 630 8751, www.sabato.co.nz




Yeshe Dawa at The Midnight Baker

Faces at Grey Lynn Farmers Market Like most other organisations and individuals, Farmers markets around the country have been closed during lockdown. However, vegetables keep growing, hens keep laying and cows still need milking. And, of course, customers are all eager to access good quality foods. This is a taste of what some of the stallholders from Grey Lynn Farmers Market have been doing. Isabel Pasch is one of our committee members and founder of Bread and Butter Bakery. She has been super busy reworking the bakery

and cafe space to provide a delivery service – not just for their bakery products but also for other market sellers: milk, eggs, veggie boxes and fruit boxes have all become available through this service. This has been extremely popular with delivery slots quickly filling as more are introduced. Isabel is extremely grateful that Rebekah (another committee member and co-founder of Hakanoa Handmade Drinks) has used her van to help out with the deliveries. Our vegetable sellers (George’s Garden, BioVG, Hunter’s Garden, and Papatuanuku marae) have all been doing their best to take orders and deliver them to customers’ doors. But it is a tough gig operating this way and most are struggling to keep up with the demand. Of course, they are delighted to know that customers appreciate their produce and service. That Fruit Shop is a family affair. Due to age rules, Rufus and Annette have to stay strictly in their bubble, so their kids are helping where they can. Their kids all have full-on, full-time jobs, albeit from home offices through it all so they are super busy! The family has been blown away by the response to their fruit delivery service. At first, they were only doing their own deliveries but, now, the mixed fruit boxes are now available through shop.breadandbutter.nz Carl has been looking after his hens, sending Nature’s Fresh Eggs to several home delivery services (including shop.BreadandButter.nz), all while preparing to move to a new farm! Jersey Girl Organics has been delighted to learn that its milk won a gold medal in the Outstanding Food Producers Awards for 2020. It was so lucky that the judges were able to meet and sample contestants wares before lockdown!

Christopher helping out at The Coffee Store

40 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



Giovanna has been talking to customers to let them know that Massimiliano (the cheese maker) is delivering a selection of fresh il Casaro cheeses to Farro, a few shops and My Food Bag. But none of their usual restaurant customers are able to operate. Melissa had to put her Something Big is Brewing kombucha ‘mothers’ into hibernation over lockdown. Now that she has MPI approval, she is waking them up and starting to do home deliveries for her regular customers. Cameron has been roasting and grinding The Coffee Store coffee beans at home with a bit of help from his young son. Luckily, coffee is one of those products that is easy to send by courier. Likewise, Ruth and Dave have been sending their The Tea Thief teas to customers by courier. Happy Bee Keeping moved their bee business to Kerikeri a few weeks before lockdown. They now own New Zealand’s largest beehive and hope to host visitors when allowed. In the meantime, they are jarring honey and sending it to customers.

Flower grower Alice is putting all her energy into planning for spring and making sure she has an abundance of beautiful, scented, joyful spring blooms as early as she can. This means she’s in her greenhouse sowing seeds, out in the fields composting and amending soil and studying seed catalogues to find new and exciting flowers to grow and share. At The Midnight Baker, the ovens are on and Yeshe and her team are busy baking bread for online store customers, Farro and Commonsense Organics stores. They’re expanding their product range to include some of our cafe favourites such as our GF, Vegan Chocolate Chunk Cookies and essentials such as coffee, flour and yeast. We’ve partnered with our couriers to provide contactless delivery across Auckland and all of Aotearoa.

Alice at Fields Fortune flower farm

Satomi and Ryo had to stop making their popular omirice during the lockdown period so they are using the time to do paperwork and re-check their food control plan to ensure they will be cooking and serving safe food for customers when the market returns.

For everyone, upending their business models overnight has been a big challenge. Not everyone has been able to keep operating and those who have tell me that their incomes have fallen dramatically. They are having to work much harder for that income, and their costs have increased. It has been tough for everyone. Customised orders are harder than most expected, and making door-to-door deliveries is much harder than they expected. And, most of all, they miss their customers and the other stallholders. They are looking forward to a time when we can all be together again.  PN www.glfm.co.nz

Sunday mornings at the Grey Lynn Community Centre 510 Richmond Road PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



Gary Steel: Vegan menus everywhere we look How did your veganism go during the Covid-19 lockdown? For many, it was an opportunity to brush up on their cooking skills. And for those who typically eat out, there was a pressing necessity to learn the essentials of choosing, preparing and rendering ingredients into an edible concoction. For me, it was a brief glimpse into a possible future world where one international crisis or another – economic meltdown, climate change, terrorism, war or pandemic – could conceivably make many of the staple ingredients unavailable. It’s a wake-up call to some naïve plant-eaters who seem to think that veggie burgers grow on trees. Many of our food staples are imported and rely on complex distribution chains. During the lockdown, supermarkets throughout the length and breadth of New Zealand were often without flour, rice, tofu, pulses, pasta and noodles. For those of us lucky enough to live in Ponsonby, there was a choice of supermarkets and it was often possible to find those commodities in at least one of them, but the supply problem was serious for smaller communities. Could a vegan survive and thrive without those food basics? Possibly, but it would require a huge amount of dedication and know-how to identify alternative food sources and adapt recipes to make them acceptable to the human palate. Hunters and gatherers would be fine. If supply chains to stores were seriously inhibited, meat eaters would probably head for the bush

(hey, we’ve got a lot of possums) or the water (hey, there’s plenty of fish in the sea). It’s a useful window into existence in colonial New Zealand where the possibility of surviving as a vegan would have been next to nil. Without rice and pulses or the processed fake meats that are fast becoming central to the lives of vegans in New Zealand, it’s hard to imagine how we would stay alive. Having gone through this lockdown and experienced in a small way what may become a real issue some time in the not-too-distance future, perhaps it’s time to seriously tackle the supply issues. Maybe it’s time for local manufacturers of vegan products to look to local supplies of key ingredients and, where they don’t exist, to look at how we could start to grow them here. Is there a part of New Zealand that could sustain productive rice paddies? Could we grow almonds here? Maybe it’s an opportunity for innovative raw food outfits like Little Bird to come up with a menu that’s entirely home-grown and which covers all the nutritional bases. In a post-apocalyptic world it’s hard to imagine veganism existing, but if the world does go to hell in a hat, it’d be nice to know that New Zealand had prepared for survival all on its lonesome, without the need to rely on food sources from a world that’s burning. (GARY STEEL)  PN

Gary Steel is an Auckland-based journalist who runs entertainment site for grownups, www.witchdoctor.co.nz He can be contacted via beautmusic@gmail.com

PONSONBY NEWS+ JUNE 2020 Maintaining a Happy Healthy Sustainable Lifestyle

COPY DEADLINE: WEDNESDAY 20 MAY PUBLISHED: FRIDAY 5 JUNE Call 09 378 8553 to book or email martin@ponsonbynews.co.nz 42 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020


81,000+ readers each month




210 SYMONDS STREET T: 09 377 1911 www.sidatthefrenchcafe.co.nz sidatthefrenchcafe

PROGRESSIVE INDIAN DINING SIDART, Level 1, Three Lamps Plaza, 283 Ponsonby Road T: 360 2122 www.sidart.co.nz


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.

CONTEMPORARY INDIAN DINING 5 Fort Lane, CBD T: 09 379 9702 cassiarestaurant.co.nz

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 www.gustoitaliano.co.nz




Phil Parker: Lockdown libations Being on a budget and with most of my favourite wine stores shut during Level 4, I was reduced to raiding my modest wine cellar most nights over the last month. There was the odd trip to the local supermarket but the range of wines on offer was fairly limited. One plus about the lockdown is that we are a family of good cooks, so we have had some fantastic meals all prepared from scratch and I have put more thought into wine matching. The downside is that daylight saving shifted ‘wine o’clock’ an hour away and my oenological body clock is now primed for a drink at 4pm. So after I open a bottle at 5, there is often not much left by the time the food is ready to eat! First World problem, I know. Matawhero Church House Gisborne Chardonnay 2018 - $30 Wow. What a surprise. I have tasted a number of lacklustre New Zealand chardonnays over the last year, but this is a standout wine. Aromas of minerality, flinty, funky yeast and a good whiff of oak. A gloriously rich, lengthy and complex palate of toasty oak, ripe grapefruit, peach crumble, canned apricots and honey. Fine as an aperitif or with seafood or creamy pasta. Availability – Glengarry. Pegasus Bay North Canterbury Chardonnay 2018 - $44 Big and bold. Pretty well leaps out of the glass and says, ‘Hey, take me on!’. Grapefruit, funky, ‘reductive’ style, yeasty mineral aromas. In the mouth, the funky aspects take a back seat and the palate opens up with ripe grapefruit, toasty hazelnut, canned peach and a long finish. Creamy, cheesy pasta is a match. Available – Pegasus Bay Wines. Taylors Jaraman Clare Valley /McLaren Shiraz 2018 - $34 Spicy nose of plums and cassis, opens up as a generous Aussie shiraz with a rich palate of blackberries, dark fruits and poached plum with a spicy length of flavour. Not an over the top style, it clocks in at 14.5%

alcohol. A fantastic food match with tomato-based Italian dishes. Availability – New World and Super Liquor. Taylors Jaraman Clare Valley /Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 - $34 Earthy and gamey aromas, with a hint of good ol’ Vegemite. Medium to full bodied wine with liquorice, mocha, dark berry fruits and anise. A dry finish. A sturdy cabernet that really would shine with food to match. My suggestion – BBQ steak, or a rich, tomato vege lasagne. Availability – New World and Super Liquor Pegasus Bay North Canterbury ‘Aria’ Late Picked Riesling 2016 - $40 An amazing ‘dessert’ style, late-picked riesling. Complex and multilayered wine with aromas of beeswax and citrus marmalade. Segues on the palate into crème brûlée, cape gooseberry jam, grapefruit and honeysuckle with a surprisingly dry to medium lengthy finish. Just cries out for a cheese platter of cheddar, parmesan, havarti and washed rind. Available – Caro’s, Fine Wine Delivery Company, Pegasus Bay Wines. No 1 Family Estate Cuvée NV - $37 French-born Champagne-maker Daniel Le Brun launched his familyowned Méthode Traditionelle-producing business back in 1999 in Marlborough. The cuvée is pale gold and made from 100% chardonnay grapes in the blanc de blanc style. Delicate citrus, yeast and floral aromas. Spent two years on yeast lees. Tastes rich and creamy with flavours of blanched almond, nectarine and a hint of mandarin. Lengthy palate with a dry, but not bone-dry finish. Available: Glengarry. (PHIL PARKER)  PN

FINE WINE & FOOD TOURS “No. 4 Auckland Food & Drink” – TripAdvisor Your host, Phil Parker wine writer. Boutique tours for small and large groups.

E: phil.parker@xtra.co.nz

44 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020




Ross Thorby: Queen Victoria - still the lucky ship “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness.” I had booked my South American odyssey in the good times. New Zealand’s economy was good, Saint Jacinda was ruling us with a kind motherly hand and there was nothing to indicate that disaster was quietly brewing just off to one side. So not knowing then what we know now, what else than a month or so on my favourite ship, popping in and out of exciting and exotic ports in South America – sampling the food and local liquor and generally exploring their world. Santiago Chile, was a hidden gem that I had only previously transited through. Now, I was able to spend some time exploring its hidden by-ways, cobbled streets and bustling, expansive boulevards. It was four days after our ship departed that the city fell into anarchy – riots, looting and burning, but we sailed forth nonetheless, leaving Chile’s turmoil and despair in our wake. Lima and Peru were outstanding and worthy of their World Heritage listings. We stood in awe in front of ancient pyramids, then avoided hordes of monkeys throwing their sh*t at us in a primeval jungle. Just after we left, Peru closed its borders to everyone. We visited the Hill Villages in Ecuador where the famous Panama hat is made after we were tested for the virus by the port officials as we got off the ship. They closed the port when we left. We sailed on to Panama City. The first indication of the pandemic had appeared there the previous day and the government was looking at closing the city to foreigners – we snuck in by the skin of our teeth and had a terrific day visiting ‘Old Town’ and playing dominoes with Noriega’s personal chef. Panama was closed two days later. Aruba was next – the German fun ship, ‘The Aida’, arrived ahead of us that morning. She threw off its passengers within hours – cruise cancelled, “Thank you for coming, now please make your own way home and, while you’re at it, please sign this Cruise Satisfaction form.” Curacao was a welcome day of relaxing and drinking pina coladas in sun-dappled squares, admiring the colourful houses and expansive views. The virus broke out when we left – I don’t think it was us. The US was always going to be touch and go. Someone in the White House was running around unable to make up his mind if the sky was falling; America was snivelling while the rest of the world was catching a cold. We managed to leave the port by sneaking out a side entrance, our mooring lines left dangling in the harbour and a wisp of smoke from our stack settling on an empty berth. In and out as if in quiet absolution.

We fled quickly out to sea, our ship’s natural environment. The Captain slammed shut our shell doors and we were to remain isolated until Southampton, two weeks away. There was nothing around us but a carpet of blue sea, white caps and a pod of sunbathing orcas. How calmly they floated as we sailed past, oblivious to the carnage and fear just over the horizon. On land, all hell had broken loose and each day you thought that it couldn’t get worse, it did. And there was nothing that we could do. Cruise ships all around the world were being recalled to port. Some, not as lucky as us, were identified as having the virus onboard, terrifying the remaining passengers and sending ports into panic mode. As planes cancelled, transit hubs shut, hotels closed and escape routes blocked, all we could do was sit and wait until we reached land. New Zealand, family and home had never been so far away to me as it was in those last few weeks. We could only continue as best we could. So we danced and partied and ate and socialised until we were virtually one of the last, fully operating cruise ships afloat. We were left alone, a beautiful Marie Celeste-like form, sailing on in a Marie Antoinette kind of state until we reached land and this, whatever you call it, our new reality. The Queen Victoria has always been lucky for me. We finally reached dock and I was able to grab one of the few flights out of Heathrow and home. This, too, will pass and I think we will all appreciate our little corner of the world just that much more. (ROSS THORBY)  PN PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



Heidi Padain: Entertainment in your garden A black cloud descends upon the flock of tui birds. The other tui birds are as shocked as I am by the sudden appearance of this huge, dominant male. From a distance, this tui looks as though he is wearing a hooded cloak. His landing isn’t the typical dramatic swoop and bounce arrangement that I have come to expect from tui birds. This bird knows how to make an entrance. He floats down, settles in the manuka tree and then proceeds to puff up his feathers to appear as large as he possibly can. Most of the tui birds have dispersed into the surrounding trees. Some have vanished altogether. Perhaps they know something I don’t. “Am I wise to remain standing on my deck?” I wonder. Without warning, this tui has come down into the tree closest to the deck rail. With his wings slightly raised, he faces me directly. We stare at one another for what seems to be an impossibly long time. He’s sitting so close to me and I’m puzzled by this. I don’t recall seeing him here before. It usually takes a while for individual tui birds to feel comfortable around me. I’m in awe. Not only is he huge, but he has the most striking silver feathers on the top of his head. It looks as though he has a silver Mohawk. I’ve decided to name him Baron de Silver. Suddenly, the Baron bursts into song. His sounds are accompanied by dramatic movements. He flicks his beak up toward the sky and his snow-white throat feathers move in and out rhythmically. They look like tiny inaudible cymbals, softly clanging together. I am truly mesmerised. I’m not Baron de Silver’s only observer. Cat, a female tui, finally comes down from the pohutukawa tree where she’s been hiding. She takes up her usual position on the deck rail. Sipping nervously at the half round of orange, she strains her neck up and rapidly turns her head from side to side. It’s a jittery, awkward movement that distinguishes her from the other tui birds. Her left eye is impaired, but it is a strikingly, beautiful pearl globe.

Baron de Silver drifts down gracefully from the manuka tree and sits on the rail on the other side of the orange. Cat looks so tiny next to him. Her throat feathers are thin and wispy in comparison. I am worried that he will see her affliction as a weakness. “Please don’t hurt her,” I whisper. Without warning, there’s a dramatic liftoff. I see flashes of iridescent blues and greens. They’re so fast; I can’t tell who’s doing the chasing. Their noisy flight is a mix of whirring, flapping craziness and short glides of silence. They make number eight loops around the trees, in out and around, in out and around. I yell out at them, “Stop it, you’re making me dizzy down here,” and all the while I’m delighting in their aerobatic playfulness. They stop and bounce around like monkeys in the pohutukawa tree. Occasionally they sit facing one another, both singing loudly before taking off and repeating their orbit of madness. I’ve lost track of them now. They’re too fast for me. Suddenly it is strangely quiet. Cat resumes her position on the deck rail and looks at me with her good eye. Baron de Silver has vanished. “What did you do that for? I rather liked him,” I said. (HEIDI PADAIN)  PN

To see some of Heidi’s other photographic work, go to www.flickr.com and type Heidi Padain into the search box, or, you can contact Heidi by email hidihi@xtra.co.nz, or look her up on Facebook - Heidi Padain Photography.

46 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



Nurturing wellness to support strong immunity And five simple action steps you can do now. When considering wellness, immunity is a top priority for many of us at the moment. Looking after and nurturing our immune system is how we can defend ourselves against becoming unwell, and recovering quickly if we do fall under the weather – especially as we move into these colder months. As we enter into this new ‘normal’ and start mingling with our family, friends and our community again, now is the perfect time to give your body the extra TLC that it needs to support your immune system. To help you (and your family) with this, we’ve compiled a list of tools and critical nutrients for strong immunity.

as your army. You need to have ample soldiers for your first line of immunity defence and nutrients play that role.

1. Eat nourishing, whole foods Whole foods are full of highly nourishing essential vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and micronutrients. Up to 75% of the immune system is located in the gut, so whatever supports your gut health, also supports your immunity. Win-win!

4. Hygiene and ‘physically’ distancing Like the saying goes, ‘offence is your best defence’. Many of you already know the drill here: washing your hands with hot, soapy water, avoiding touching your face while out and about and coughing away from others, into your elbow. While they may sound simple, these things are very effective at helping to keep you protected.

2. Get your eight hours sleep Sleep is a basic biological necessity as it allows our bodies to recover and regenerate. Consistently getting good quality sleep improves our mood, mental ability, memory and physical performance. Sleep is also beneficial as a preventative measure against illness and if you do get sick, it can aid in recovery. 3. Boost your nutrient intake Every single process and function in the body is powered by nutrients – this includes the workings of our immune system. Think of nutrients

When looking to add extra beneficial nutrients into your diet, a good, high-quality multivitamin and fish oil is a fantastic place to start.

While physical distancing is required at this time, it’s also very important for our mental health that we stay socially active – virtually. Particularly for our elderly family and those who are alone during this time. 5. Lastly, keep calm and carry on Stress is one of the biggest compromises of the immune system. During times of change, it can be helpful to focus your attention on what you can control, rather than what’s beyond you. BEPURE www.bepure.co.nz




Tadhg Stopford: Now GP legal: Cannabis for all people and all conditions Hello there, what a month it’s been! Hopefully you and your family are in good health. But, if you or a loved one suffers from anxiety, depression, chronic migraine, arthritis, dementia, pain – or anything – your GP can now legally prescribe dried cannabis, oils, lozenges... whatever! So congratulations are due to the Government for this step. However, the range of products remains limited and expensive. Fighting cancer properly, for example, requires at least 1000mg of THC per day (1gm). But the only approved THC product in New Zealand costs $1300 for 81mg THC. Yes – that’s $1300 for less than 10% of one dose of something that could save your life. No wonder some people still grow their own. Because fighting cancer is a metabolic process that can take months or years, and a year of paying $1300p/day = $474,500. (Out of my reach.) So, unless you are very rich (or grow your own), dont expect to beat your cancer with legal cannabis unless we #makeitlegal with a YES vote in the upcoming referendum. GP knowledge remains low in the subject, too. 89% of them are unaware that health depends on cannabis molecules our body makes (endocannabinoids). That’s because medical schools don’t teach nutrition properly; which is how they are made – via Omega fatty acids and AA. But, if you can afford it, it’s now easier to get some of those molecules from your GP. The Hemp Foundation has identified through research many other plants that also support human health through nutrition, and we invite you to contact us through www.thehempfoundation.org.nz if you have any questions. (TADHG STOPFORD)  PN



Enquire via GreatHempNZ@gmail.com or see us at the Grey Lynn Farmers Market

48 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



John Appleton: D-RIBOSE...restoring the energy pool D-Ribose is a vital nutrient with a very significant role in the body. It’s a simple five carbon sugar (glucose is a six-carbon sugar) that is found in every cell in the human body. Although D-Ribose is made in the body, it can be used up very rapidly, especially during high-intensity exercise. The problem is that restoration can be slow which can result in an energy deficit. Unlike sugars such as glucose which are metabolised to contribute to energy turnover, D-Ribose is not ‘burned’ for energy but is conserved by the cell for rebuilding the energy pool. It’s the only compound used by the body to manage cellular energy restoration. When we consume D-Ribose, the body recognizes that it is different from other sugars and preserves it for the vital work of actually making the energy molecule (ATP) that powers our hearts, muscles, brains and every other tissue in the body. ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate) is the energy ‘currency’ of the cell and D-Ribose provides the key building block for ATP. Without sufficient D-Ribose, the cell cannot make ATP. Although the first research on D-Ribose in humans goes back to 1958, D-Ribose was first developed as a dietary supplement in 1997 by Bioenergy Inc in the US and, since then, many studies have investigated this amazing yet simple ‘sugar’. In 1973, German researchers reported that energy-starved hearts could recover their energy levels if D-Ribose was given prior to or immediately following ischemia (reduced blow flow causing oxygen deprivation). In 1992, a study published in the Lancet showed that administration of D-Ribose to patients with severe, stable coronary artery disease increased exercise tolerance and delayed the onset of angina. In 2003, University of Bonn, Germany published the results of a heart failure study which showed that administration of D-Ribose improved the performance of the heart, increased exercise tolerance and significantly improved quality of life.

Athletes have been using D-Ribose for many years. Dr James Roberts is an American cardiologist who runs marathons. He says, “it’s the impaired recovery of the muscle ATP pool that causes the pain, soreness and stiffness after training.” Dr Roberts found that taking D-Ribose before and after a run, he felt really good and he was no longer fatigued in the days following a strenuous workout. Dr John St Cyr MD PhD, an expert in cardiac metabolism, points out that, “three to four workouts per week may not allow enough rest between sessions for heart and muscle energy pools to return to normal levels.” Dr Ronald Terjung at University of Missouri, discovered much to his surprise that when muscles were supplemented with D-Ribose, they continued to add to their energy stores even while they were actively working. Until Dr Terjung’s study was published, it was thought that muscle energy stores were only refilled when the muscle was at rest. As to who might consider supplementing with D-Ribose, it would be on my list for any condition where my cells might be energy starved – think heart, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia and any form of intense exercise. D-Ribose comes as a powder which dissolves instantly in water and it makes a very pleasant drink. Research shows that D-Ribose is very rapidly absorbed and approximately 97% ‘gets through’. Even at high doses, it’s a very safe supplement but, because it can lower blood glucose levels, diabetics should talk with their doctor first. Cardiologists Drs Stephen Sinatra and James Roberts sum it up by saying – “we can’t overstate the effect of D-Ribose supplementation on maintaining energy levels. Any tissue that relies heavily on aerobic energy metabolism, such as the heart and muscles, will be severely affected by any amount of oxygen deprivation. The problem is ATP drain. The solution is to give it back.” (JOHN APPLETON)  PN

APPLETON ASSOCIATES, T: 09 489 9362, appletonassoc@xtra.co.nz, www.johnappleton.co.nz

Love your legs Varicose vein sufferers have a local resource in Ponsonby, the Vein & Laser clinic. Vein & Laser was established on the North Shore in 2005 and also runs a satellite clinic at 80 Jervois Road every Wednesday.

health insurance companies cover varicose vein treatment but not cosmetic (thread vein) treatment. Reopening at lockdown Level 2.

The medical professionals at the clinic have a passion for their chosen specialty – veins! The experienced team at Vein & Laser spend their days examining and treating their patients’ problematic veins, from tiny thread veins to large varicose veins. Every patient’s varicose vein pattern (map) is different, and a number of treatment options are available. We try to provide the most appropriate treatment for each client; it’s fascinating and rewarding work.

For assessment of your varicose vein and advice on vein care, vein treatment and treatment cost, call T: 09 410 0990, www.veinandlaser.co.nz

Dr Elisabeth De Felice and her team all share the philosophy that the service provided must be of the highest level without compromise and that people matter. Approximately 35% of our population suffer with varicose veins. Varicose veins can lead to leg aching, tiredness, heaviness. Often the long-term problems of swelling, itchiness, leg cramps and ulcers are not recognised as being associated with veins. Modern-day treatment is usually non-surgical (injections or laser) and greatly improves a varicose vein sufferer’s quality of life. Most




Meet the teacher – Helen Long Helen Long is a Head of House and the Head of Media Studies at Western Springs College. She is also the staff-elected representative on the Board of Trustees. How did you feel when the lockdown was announced? I felt a mixture of relief and trepidation at the announcement. Relief because I had been worried about an outbreak in the school, and trepidation about what lockdown would actually be like (I’d had visions of queuing up for rations, and coming out of lockdown to find that Auckland had turned into a barren wasteland). When the lockdown was announced, I had just started my last period class with my year elevens. We watched the announcement together, then I spent the rest of the period answering questions. The amount of work we got done that period was negligible, but I hope that I was able to allay some of their fears during that time.

What were the things you focused on doing in the last couple of days before lockdown? In the days leading up to lockdown, I had to split my time between making sure my department was okay, making sure that students in my house were okay and making sure that my family was lockdown ready. The last thing I did before we went into Level 4 was a slightly frantic supermarket shop while my son had his last tennis lesson. How has it been teaching classes from home? Teaching classes via video was a bit disconcerting at first – it’s an odd feeling having 25 kids in your lounge, but it almost feels normal now. At the start, most kids didn’t turn on their cameras or their microphones, but they’ve gotten a little braver each day, and attendance has been good, too. I am really lucky to be the head of a department where everyone is very comfortable with technology. Everyone has been very quick to embrace all the digital tools, and we’re all getting used to seeing ourselves on camera. You teach media – that must be tricky when students can’t meet up in groups and they can’t go out to film. This has been tricky and our department has had to think very hard about how we teach our subject. Our year 13s were just about to start filming their documentaries when lockdown was announced, so we had to come up with solutions quickly. My colleague had the genius idea of changing the brief to ‘Life in the Time of Covid 19’ which will

50 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020

be filmed in their bubbles with their phones, or whatever they have access to.

You are part of our Pasifika school community – how are our students coping? Do they have some different challenges from other students? The challenges that some of our Pasifika students are facing are the same as those faced by kids all over the country. Students who have come to us with learning needs will be finding distance learning really challenging, and students without access to reliable internet and/ or a device won’t be able to access the same level of education as those who do. Our senior managers have done an amazing job of identifying students in this situation and spent hours packaging up and delivering laptops to kids who needed them. The inequity that this pandemic has uncovered has been heartbreaking. The digital divide is real and it is affecting rangatahi Maori and Pasifika disproportionately.

And you are a mum. How old are your children and how are they coping with mum working from home? Are you slipping into doubling as their teacher, too? I am mum to lovely 15-year-old twins who are at two different high schools in my local area. I’ve been really lucky because they are old enough to manage themselves. Having said that, we have had to work to a schedule; everyone has to be out of bed and dressed at 8am, then at the table with their laptop by 9am. No one is allowed to do a Zoom meeting or a Google meet in their pyjamas (including me). What have you enjoyed most about being in lockdown? The family time has been lovely. It’s been really nice eating dinner together every night, playing board games and watching movies – things we don’t always get to do because we are all so busy. Some families are doing it really tough at the moment. It’s made us all aware that we have a lot to be grateful for. What do you miss the most about pre-Covid-19 life? Flour, yeast and movie theatres. westernsprings.school.nz PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH (except January)


An investment portfolio for all seasons What are the investment options for those contemplating retirement in the current investment environment? The answer to this question that potential retirees will be asking themselves is, surprisingly, not determined by the current investment environment, but by preferred lifestyle costs, risk tolerance and time. Traditionally, the most common approaches adopted by retirees are interest-bearing arrangements such as cash or term deposits with banks or property-based investments. Interest-bearing investments are attractive to risk-averse investors, but these investors can get caught out, as happened when many conservative mum and dad investors lost everything in the post2009 period of finance company collapses – a misfortune not easily remedied without the ability to earn an income. The more ‘vanilla’ approach for the average conservative investor is to put all their money in the bank. Given the track record of New Zealand banks, this doesn’t pose the risk to investors of losing all their savings, but may instead result in a loss of purchasing power, as illustrated below: On-Call Interest


Tax 25%


After-Tax Return



+/- 1%

Real return (after tax & inflation)


0800 1PLAN4U or 09 309 3680

You can see from the table that although the return from the bank appears to be 1.6%, when you subtract tax and the decreasing purchasing power of your money (inflation), the real return is far less attractive. Investors armed with this knowledge might be considering the more return-friendly approach of investing in residential and commercial rental properties. The benefit of this strategy is that it can provide both an income and a nest egg for retirement if investors who are willing to put in the work. However, finding a reliable tenant can be an ongoing problem, along with responsibility of paying rates, insurance, maintenance and the mortgage in the event of losing the tenant – not a prospect you would want to be facing during your supposed golden years. There is another alternative that comes in the form of shares either in a private company, your own business or in publicly listed companies. The potential returns of running your own business are excellent if the business is successful, but the downside risk is bankruptcy if the business fails. Private company shares may not see you broke, but you could easily lose all your money, as you have no exit strategy when things are no longer going well. At least with publicly listed company shares an investor can sell the shares on the market at the prevailing market price, but the risk of substantial capital loss remains. This thought can be daunting to the average passive investor who doesn’t want nor has the necessary skills needed to manage. Just look at the littered corpses of investors who thought that they could ’beat the market.’ So, what is the answer for retirees wanting to maintain their preferred lifestyle but not risk running out of money before they run out of life? All will be revealed next month. www.oneplan.co.nz





Logan Granger: Accessing bank lending & support for Covid-19 affected businesses The Business Finance Guarantee Scheme is one avenue for small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) to access funding. It is a partnership between the Crown and participating approved banks. It will be clearly flagged on your bank’s website. The funding is intended to support SMEs, with targeted new loans (including increases to existing limits), as a response to difficulties caused by COVID-19. Businesses with annual revenue between $250k and $80m can apply to their banks for loans of up to $500,000, for up to three years. $6.25 billion is available to New Zealand businesses. The Government is guaranteeing 80% of the risk, while the banks are covering the remaining 20%. A normal lending process will be followed by the banks, who will make the lending decisions. You need to apply with the bank you are an existing customer of, some of the banks are accepting enquiries and applications now but may still be working through how they will assess the lending. The banks will get a lot of lending applications, therefore if you want to be at the top of the pile, don’t leave your banker with files to sort out before they assess your application for approval. Banks have managers to deal with and frame up customer lending requirements, in most instances a credit review officer vets the lending application for final approval. Therefore be organised, tidy and put your banker in the best position to get through credit approval. Before you apply or approach the bank, collate and prepare the following to go with your application, this can apply to any lending, not just this scheme: • Make sure you have all your bank account mandates IDs and Addresses for anti-Money Laundering (AML) ready, have scanned copies of your IDs, drivers licences and passports and utility bills. If you don’t have certified copies, find a local JP to certify them if you can

(ask on your community FB page), banks will check and may require they have up-to-date information from you. • Contact your accountant and work out what you need to put together, and what you can do versus what is needed from the accountant. • Collate signed copies of your last year’s financials and taxation returns. • Clean up your internal management accounts in your accounting system – if you have final 2019s this will be March 2020s, if you only have 2018 finalised, then you need 2019 and 2020 for 31 March. This means making sure all the items are reconciled and basic items accounted for; makes sure you have a clean profit and loss account and balance sheet printed. • Scope out a basic cash flow and budget for the 2021 tax year; get your accountant to help you if needed, at least draft something to start with. • Do a one to two page summary outline of the business and why you need the funding and what you are going to use it for and what your basic business plan is for the next 12 to 24 months is, as clearly as best as possible. • Our checklists and plans are here and they will help you: www.jacal.co.nz/jacal-covid-19/ We are more than happy to assist you – please call me on M: 027 283 8331 if you want to discuss putting together a funding application. The team at Johnston Associates wish the Ponsonby News readers all the very best in these hard times and we are here if you need us! (LOGAN GRANGER)  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, 202 Ponsonby Road, T: 09 361 6701, www.jacal.co.nz

52 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020




When you’re buying or selling a property in the Auckland region, our legal expertise makes for smoother transactions, right down to securing the keys on settlement day.

©Copyright Ross Jones 2010- 2016



SpeCial FIxEd FEE PrE‑AuctIOn rEPOrt $300

Property transactions that come up smelling of roses.

Talk to us about conveyancing Call us today

Your regular donation will help connect more school children with nature, empower people all over Auckland with sustainable living choices and develop and maintain a therapeutic garden. Join now at: www.kelmarnagardens.nz/donate

169a Ponsonby Road Ponsonby, Auckland +64 9 929 0800 www.metrolaw.co.nz Trusts & Wills


Business & Commercial



HUNGRY & FEELING THIRSTY? We are spoilt for choice!

THERE ARE NOW 254 PLACES IN THE WESTERN BAYS, WHERE YOU CAN EAT, DRINK AND BE MERRY. They are all listed in the Ponsonby Little Black Book... ponsonbynews.co.nz/ponsonby-little-black-book




Delay or soldier on? Renovating/building during the COVID-19 Pandemic is not quite going to plan for everyone around the world. The freedoms we once enjoyed have been removed and we are staying home and staying safe. The arrival of COVID-19 has meant that even the best made plans are now having to be adjusted. We are having to adapt to a new normal affecting everything from our social lives to the economy. This has left everyone wondering what the rest of the year will hold, and many homeowners will be weighing up if renovating or building their dream home is still part of their 2020 plan. We thought it would be useful to put together this guide on helping you make the best decision for you and your family in terms of proceeding on with your plans or putting them on hold. We have broken this down into stages within the renovation/ building journey to make it easy for you to see what the best solution may be. DREAMING OF A BIGGER, BETTER HOME Pre-lockdown, you were thinking of renovating or building a new home and having all the family at home during lockdown had made your desire for more space stronger. You may be wondering if this is a good idea, considering the current situation. The good news is that even if you engage someone to work on some concept designs for you, you are not committed to the project yet. The average length for concept designs for a major renovation is around five months, so you have plenty of time to refine what you want – being in your home every day is a good time to find out what is functional for you as well as doing all important research. Financially, you may want to begin researching into how much you can borrow from the bank and what your financial position is going to be when it comes time to apply for the finances needed. ALREADY WORKING WITH AN ARCHITECT If you have already begun working with an architect, you may be panicking and wondering if your plans are going to be able to be achieved at a cost you can afford, in a time that works for you. Hamish Gunns, registered architect and director of WATGUNLOW Architects says, “The good news is that it is not too late to revise your goals. If you are already into the design process, changing drawings is much simpler and cost effective than timber framing, despite any noises your architect may make to the contrary! There may be a couple of options available to you at this point to reduce your budget.” His recommendations include: • Reducing the scope by omitting key costly items, such as a new window seat. • Substituting high-value items for more cost-effective items such as a large, freestanding bath. • Eliminating work that has an unknown cost element such as rock breaking. • Staging the works into smaller chunks spread over a longer period. • Look at getting more involved in the work yourself (if you have the time and skill) to complete painting, interior decorating and landscaping works. For alterations, Hamish recommends: • Reducing work that is consequential to your main work faces such as refinishing adjacent rooms to match. • Reusing or recycling elements of the existing house that can be easily reconfigured – such as reusing the kitchen cabinets in the laundry. • Looking at adding the finishing touches yourself. He adds, “You may find other ways to save money, including buying fittings at clearance sales or good quality second hand, though proceed with caution. Don’t make cutbacks on the fundamentals of your build. Things that are very difficult to change, such as insulation should be done right first time!

“Also be wary of going too cheap with fittings. Some items out there are likely to cause much more dissatisfaction and grief than the savings are worth, especially if you need to get someone back to repair or replace it. Ask around and do your research on what is worth buying.” At Next Level Construct, we can work with you when you have your concept drawings to give you an indication of what your project might cost. The service is free and allows you to make informed decisions before proceeding to construction drawings. QUOTATION TIME Everything is locked and loaded with the council and you have been issued your building consent. Your plans are now with your chosen builders to price and you are very close to being able to start your project. You may be getting extremely nervous about proceeding with your project. This may be because of financial reasons, or you are worried that there may be more lockdowns at alert Level 4, slowing down your build. Firstly, you can change your scope at any time. Write a list of what is a necessity to have in the project and what is something that is nice to have but not essential. Next, work collaboratively with the building companies doing your pricing. They will be able to recommend products that may give a comparable finish but at a cheaper price. In terms of timing, there may be some disruptions to the construction supply chain, especially for product that needs to come from overseas. We are yet to see what these disruptions are going to be, but the earlier you lock in your selections, the better. On the plus side, with plenty of building projects not going ahead, your build time may be less than initially thought as subcontractors find themselves with not as much work as usual. Now is also a great time to talk your bank and see if they can offer you a more competitive deal then pre-lockdown. The reduction of the Official Cash Rate to 0.25 means banks have been able to pass on savings to homeowners. If your bank is not playing ball, engage the services of a mortgage broker to see if they can find you a better deal elsewhere. YOU ARE HALFWAY THROUGH You may be wondering what on earth you have gotten yourself into with your renovation project. Four weeks with no action on site can be disheartening and make you wonder how much longer this is going to make your project, and how much more this is going to cost you. The best thing to do is to think positively. Unlike people who will build after you, you have clarity around how much your build is going to cost you. It is more than likely that building material prices are going to go up slowly. Also know that your project is of your builder’s utmost priority and that they have been working over the lockdown period to ensure that progress on site will be happening again quickly. If your nerves are really getting to you, we suggest revisiting the scope of your renovation project. A decent builder will be more than happy to work with you as they will want to see your project finished.

Brendon Sowerby is the Founder of Next Level Construct, an award-winning, end-to-end, residential construction company specialising in renovations, extensions and new builds. Brendon has worked in the building trade for over 17 years, meaning he knows the ins and outs of the industry. Got a building question? Ask Brendon on brendon@nextlevelconstruct.co.nz www.nextlevelconstruct.co.nz

54 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020




2 1




1. String System Work Space walnut grey 2. String System Hallway blackstained ash bowlfelt 3. String System hallway beige white 4. String System living room ash 5. String System Kitchen white 6. String system works workspace oak 6


7. String system hallway white closeup

BOB & FRIENDS, 231 Ponsonby Road, T: 09 378 7350, www.bobandfriends.co.nz




How has the Covid-19 crisis impacted the rental property market? Like almost all industry sectors in New Zealand, it has been affected. However, the impact is significantly different for commercial and residential property. What has changed? In the commercial space sector, many recent leases have a clause saying that landlords and tenants should negotiate a fair reduction of rent when the premises cannot be used or accessed in an emergency. This clause was introduced to the standard ADLS deed of lease sixth edition, in response to the Christchurch earthquakes where many premises were inside of the city cordoned off area (the red zone) and not accessible.

notice to vacate on a periodic tenancy remains. If there is a major issue with a tenancy that requires termination, a landlord can still apply to the Tenancy Tribunal for an order to terminate in specific circumstances only.

No one foresaw a situation like Covid-19 when writing the clause, but lawyers have agreed Clause 27.5 conditions were met during the lockdown with associated forced closures imposed by the Government for non-essential businesses. Temporary rent reductions negotiated varied widely from 20 to 100% depending on the tenant’s business circumstances.

The tenant is obligated to pay rent on time. However, in specific situations where the tenant is experiencing temporary severe hardship, tenants and landlords should discuss what help a private landlord could offer. These can be stressful and emotional conversations, as both parties may be under financial pressure at the same time. Landlords with mortgages or relying on the income for their retirement, tenants facing the loss of their job.

In the residential space, the Government swiftly introduced emergency measures to protect tenants in the short term as New Zealand moved into lockdown. A rent increase freeze was introduced for six months, meaning a landlord cannot serve a notice to increase the rent during this period. If a notice was supposed to become effective after 26 March, then it is declared invalid. No 90 days’ notice to vacate a property can be issued until at least 26 June. This is to avoid unnecessary move of people and for tenants to know they will not have to move at this time if they don’t want to. Tenants can vacate a property as usual; their right to issue a 21 days’

Good communication is key and help from an experienced professional property manager is beneficial, acting as a buffer between parties. For landlords who want to avoid extra stress navigating the Covid-19 regulatory requirements or want to make sure they negotiate well and fairly, contact Catalise as their job is to protect your asset and remove stress more than ever before, so you can focus your energy on dealing with your personal life, work or business challenges.

CATALISE LTD, 203A Symonds Street, Eden Terrace, M: 021 352 670, www.catalise.co.nz

unlock your property potential providing a pathway to To look after your biggest asset, you need someone you can trust - contact Sandie:

www.catalise.co.nz 56 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020

Residential/ Commercial/ Air BnB

Step by step, we partner with you to bring out the best in your property, attract the right tenants, and succeed with your investment

success 021 352 670 sales@catalise.co.nz 203a Symonds St, Eden Terrace, Auckland 1010 PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH (except January)






Kitchen/Bathroom renovation

Villa Specialist





Gib Stopping

Demolition Plumbing





l @reidpainters

Come highly recommended / On the job from start to finish Communication every step of the way / No job too small When your happy we’re happy



Exquisite hand embroidered, cushions & gifts. www.donnahoyledesign.co.nz


CALL for a wide range of free,

up to date and confidential information about: • • • • •

Consumer rights Budgeting Legal clinics Employment rights Justice of the Peace

• • • • •

Health & welfare issues House & tenancy issues Unemployment problems Education & training Personal & family issues

• Immigration needs • Local & general information • Photocopying & faxing

Citizens Advice Bureau

0800 FOR CAB or 09 376 0392

510 Richmond Road, Grey Lynn www.cab.org.nz PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



Blair Haddow: Covid-19 – an insight into the way we used to be Having just gone through the Covid-19 Level four lockdown, as the whole of New Zealand did, I can say the experience has given me a wonderful glimpse into the lifestyle I imagine New Zealand used to be ‘back in the day’ of my parents and grandparents. The 1930s, the 40s, the 50s, and even the 60s. Yes, the past few weeks of enduring reduced social contact, no chance to pop out to Ponsonby Road for drinks or dinner with friends, and non-stop talk-back radio discussions on every possible aspect of Covid-19, did become somewhat tedious, but the Level four lockdown opened new ‘experience’ doors for millions of New Zealanders. We once again became a nation that cared for each other. I mean truly cared. So often, the rhetoric about Kiwis is that we are such a friendly nation. Let’s be honest, as life spun ever faster and faster over the past few decades, we have probably slipped from that mantle as we focused on the new car, the family holiday to Fiji or Bali, shopping, or racing into the coolest new bar in town. We, as a human race, became too self-centred. The compulsory Level four slow down rectified that pretty quickly. How so? The slower pace of life changed the way we behaved. I almost feel as if I know what it’s like to live in one of our small provincial towns – Te Puke, Carterton, Renwick, Hokitika or Gore – rather than the hustle and bustle hub of Ponsonby. During Level four, I talked at length (of course with appropriate social distancing) to neighbours in my street who I may have occasionally politely nodded at in the past, but who had now become true first name neighbours. I talked on Zoom to friends around the world whom I hadn’t been in touch with for months... and in some cases even years. I made contact with a lady in my neighbourhood who was anxious about venturing outside, so I offered to shop for anything she needed… as I did for others in my street who were unable or nervous about leaving their bubbles. Going out for a walk around the block during Level four evolved into taking hours – not because of the distance covered, but for the neighbourly conversations I had with scores of people in the streets around my home. I saw children playing hopscotch in their driveways and on the footpaths and roads or riding scooters and bikes in the neardeserted streets rather than sitting behind X-boxes and Playstations. Neighbourhood-focused Facebook and Whatsapp connections were set up so people could keep in touch with what those in their street were getting up to. Who had spare feijoas in a box on the front lawn, who needed help repairing a dripping tap, who had the best teddy bear display in their window?

Level four made us a more caring and neighbourhood-centric society. It is my heartfelt wish now that, out of all the misery and disruption to come out of what we as a country have endured, it is that going forward we maintain this new habit of caring for our neighbours and our immediate community. ‘Local’ is the new buzzword in our repertoire. I would gladly trade five weeks without McDonalds or KFC for the stories, banter, laughter, smiles and simple life that I have experienced from those around my Ponsonby pad. From that perspective, Martin and the crew at Ponsonby News have been at the bow-wave of the ‘keep it local’ ethos for the past two or so decades – being a truly local publication which has never lost focus of being the media voice of Ponsonby, Grey Lynn, Freemans Bay, Herne Bay, Westmere and College Hill. That’s probably why we Ponsonby locals are so proud of ‘our’ magazine at a time when other media are wondering how to build a following. Let’s all hold on to our ‘localness’ and continue to look after each other long after this experience is behind us. Please. (BLAIR HADDOW, BAYLEYS)  PN

Because we all deserve freedom T: 378 9560 M: 0274 746 507 E: Phillipa@hotpropertyrentals.co.nz 1/1 Franklin Road, Ponsonby www.hotpropertyrentals.co.nz


SAFE helping animals out Help us fight cages

safe.org.nz PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH (except January)


Make a feature with floral fabric window coverings Interior design is about projecting your unique personality and taste onto your furnishings. Rather than feeling pressured to succumb to minimalist, contemporary styles, think of your home as a blank canvas to decorate however you choose. Floral patterns are once again on trend. Covering your window coverings with floral patterns allows you to create a unique, stylish and elegant design feature, when executed tastefully. Balancing patterns and neutral tones From colourful floral blooms to bare branches and abstract leaf motifs, there’s a wide range of styles to choose from when it comes to floral fabrics. Regardless of your taste, pay close attention to the scale of the pattern compared to your room and window specifications. Unless your floral fabric window covering is the primary decorative feature of your room, a pattern that is too large in a small room can overwhelm the rest of the décor. Ensure you tastefully contrast your floral fabric window covering with other elements in the room. When botanical and floral designs are prominent in soft furnishings such as curtains, blinds, cushions, seat pads and/or upholstery, it’s a good idea to maintain neutral for the remaining upholstery.


Coordinating colours Coordinate the colour scheme of your window coverings with other elements in your room. This could be the colour of the walls, bedspread and any furniture in the space. Do this by layering shades of one colour throughout the room. Alternatively, use a colour wheel to match colours in the room with complimentary or contrasting shades. Dark colours make a room feel cosy and small, while light tones make a room feel larger. Compliment your window covering choice according to the room. It’s best to maintain a calm environment in bedrooms to promote relaxation and restfulness. Bold or bright colours and patterns can be over-stimulating for these spaces. To create a relaxing atmosphere, choose a subtle pattern that isn’t immediately noticeable. Pair a colour within the pattern with another element in the room for a cohesive aesthetic. Where do floral fabric window coverings look best? There is a floral pattern to suit any room. Select on-trend colours and soft patterns for a sophisticated look that will brighten any room. Choose subtle patterns and fainter colour schemes if you’re nervous about a large design commitment. Please visit Lahood, www.lahood.co.nz T: 09 638 8463

15% OFF





Book your FREE in-home design consultation today 104 Mt. Eden Road, Mt. Eden Phone: 09 638 8463, www.lahood.co.nz

C U RTA I N S • B L I N D S • I N T E R I O R D E S I G N • AW N I N G S • RO L L E R S H A D E S • U P H O L S T E RY *Special conditions apply – lahood.co.nz/promotions. Offer finishes 31/5/2020.




Designing during lockdown Whilst the country has spent the past six weeks confined to barracks, it is inevitable that many of us will have put our homes under the microscope, discovering things that really should be fixed or changed all together. Undoubtedly, the one place in the house that’s gotten more use than anywhere else – other than the couch while binging LightBox and Netflix – is the kitchen. And for many of us, our kitchens have become a focal point of both our frustration and our determination to change.

“What this situation has really highlighted is the importance and the power of sites like Pinterest and Instagram, where our clients can share and discuss and make decisions on almost every aspect of their new kitchen design. They were useful tools before the shutdown, but they’ve now become essential.”

Small things that normally wouldn’t bother us have now become obsessions – the cupboard doors that don’t shut properly or line up, the complete lack of organisation in the drawers, the seemingly random temperature the oven decides to set itself to, the extractor fan that sounds like a tractor – ditto the fridge. Talking of fridges, we have now all discovered that a wine fridge is no longer a nice-to-have – it’s a necessity.

Richard has also been amazed how easily they have been able to continue to build on relationships with their clients using the likes of Zoom and Skype. However, one of the biggest challenges has been measuring existing spaces, but once again with the use of videocalling apps, he says his team have been able to walk their clients through the process – and his team will re-check these when we are back at Level 2 or Level 1, whichever allows his designers to visit his clients’ homes once again.

The flipside to the frustration of being locked down, is that it has been a perfect time to plan for the future – to be creative and productive. And that’s certainly been the attitude adopted by the team at Kitchens By Design, who have kept working with their clients all though this current situation. Owner Richard Cripps says lockdown has certainly added another dimension and an extra layer of complexity to the designing process, but it has also been fun discovering new ways of working with and collaborating with their clients.

60 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020

The one thing he says hasn’t changed – and if anything has been made clearer by this whole situation – is that kitchens continue to be the heart of our homes, and that a well designed space that is aesthetically pleasing comes into its own when we need to spend long periods at home with our families, or use as a shared workspace. If you’re thinking about putting in a new kitchen, give one of the team at Kitchens By Design a call, or pop into their Auckland-based showroom at 3 Byron Avenue, Takapuna, T: 09 488 7201. And for inspiration, take a look at their website at www.kitchensbydesign.co.nz PUBLISHED FIRST FRIDAY EACH MONTH (except January)




Between Heaven and Earth Tarawera 20 - 920 x 1845

@ OREX Tony Lane: Between Heaven and Earth II Although relatively straightforward in their iconography, the ‘Between Heaven and Earth’ series is rich in the art historical lineage it evokes. Reference is made to early Italian Renaissance landscape painting, to the works of Colin McCahon with both natural and supernatural connotations, and to the exacting art of coastal profiling from Cook to Charles Heaphy. Lane also references another tradition of painting, that of the Maori artists who adapted European conventions of representation in their decoration of marae and churches serving Te Kooti’s Ringatu religion.

Vision of Snow 20 - 330 x 290mm

Lane says, “They seem to me to be some of the best paintings to be made in Aotearoa/New Zealand in the 19th Century... I’m trying to make paintings on similar lines, connecting what can be seen, our own context, to a larger idea of the immutability and beauty of the natural world, the need to connect with this world and bring it into a new sort of consciousness before it’s too late.” ‘Between Heaven and Earth II’ offers paintings which, while unique to their maker, allude richly to the complex heritages to which a New Zealand painter is subject by living and working fully immersed in the here and now. (Edited from an essay by Peter Simpson.)  PN OREX, 15 Putiki Street, T: 09 378 0588, www.orexart.co.nz Red Plain, Kaingaroa 20 - 335 x 355mm

Day and Night and Day 19-20 - 875 x 1815mm

62 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



Between Heaven and Earth II online now at orexart.co.nz May 2020

15 putiki st, arch hill, auckland 1021 +64 9 378 0588 rex@orexart.co.nz orexart.co.nz


Pete Wheeler

@ WHITESPACE Truth is like poetry, and most people hate poetry – Pete Wheeler 22 May – 12 June Pete Wheeler is a New Zealand artist who has returned home after living and working in Berlin, Germany for the past 10 years. He is currently in Geraldine waiting until the world returns to some kind of normality and he and his family can return to Berlin, which is now home. Wheeler lived in Dunedin during the late 1990s and early 2000s, graduating with MFA from the University of Canterbury. He has held solo shows in New Zealand, Australia, America and Europe. He has multiple works in the James Wallace Collection, Zabludowicz Collection (London) and Martin Sosnoff Collection (New York) and was a finalist in the James Wallace Trust Awards in 2017. Wheeler’s work pertains themes of death, time and history – bringing in re-occurring symbols including skulls, fauna and figures from popular culture. In spite of these recurrent themes and symbols, his works defy a sense of classification. They are a product of his urban environment (Berlin as of recent), influenced by a grungy street aesthetic, often incorporating controversial imagery of political connotation or perhaps Bart Simpson flipping the bird. As with any occupation, Pete finds that painting can become a part of the daily grind. He likes the idea of it not becoming linear, constantly testing the waters in order to retain spontaneity and excitement. Pete Wheeler brushes his big paintings with humour and intent. Art-wise there is not too much flounce – just the direct, the bold and the brave.

64 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020


ARTS + CULTURE Camille Sanson, The Mother 120 x 72

ABSOLUTION – CAMILLE SANSON 22 May – 12 June ABSOLUTION is a solo exhibition by Camille Sanson reflecting her personal journey into motherhood. Through its making and narrative progression, the photographic series explores the depths of the shadow and play between dark and light. Similar to the process of developing black and white photographs in a dark room, and metaphorical relation to conception and birth, the images transition from darkness and emerge with renewed existence in light. Part of the Auckland Festival of Photography 2020 Programme. Camille Sanson is a New Zealand photographer based in London. She founded a successful photography studio in East London, and for the past 12 years she has worked across fashion, portraiture and still life photography. Her practice reflects openness to alternative perspectives and metaphysical subjects, often portrayed through aesthetic motifs of multi layered, expanded dimensions, textured pigments and attention toward primal matter. Her love of visual arts and photography began in New Zealand at the Rudolf Steiner School in Auckland, and continued her studied focus with Fashion Photography at University of the Arts, London. Collaborating with some of London’s most creative talent – seamlessly working between fashion and still life – Camille has produced campaigns for brands including: Yves Saint Laurent Beauty, Max Factor, Rimmel, Kryolan, JOOP!, Finery London, Beau Coops, Zoe and Morgan, and also photographed editorials for Vogue Ukraine, Elle, Hong Kong Tatler, Glamour Italia, Remix Magazine, Glassbook, and Swarovski magazine.  PN www.whitespace.co.nz




Horoscopes: Miss Pearl Neclis – what your stars hold for May

Aquarius (the Water Carrier) 21 January - 19 February Just make sure you are sensible with your finances for a while. I know it’s common sense but don’t be tempted to find alternative ways to spend when you can’t go out. That rainy day is just around the corner and you could be sensible about it for a change.

Pisces (the Fishes) 20 February - 20 March The past is something that has happened and can’t be changed. It might be holding you back from doing something you’ve always wanted to do. Test any new waters gently before you dip more than your toe into it. Gentle waves of pleasure are better than diving in head first.

Aries (the Ram) 21 March - 20 April It’s always best to be direct when it comes to your feelings, as you know what dragging your feet behind you can mean. Take the opportunity if presented to grasp any moment that comes your way to experience something that’s been missing in your life.

Taurus (the Bull) 21 April - 21 May If you can’t give something that you don’t have then you simply can’t. We all seem to be in the same boat these days. If someone close is having a problem, maybe the only thing you can do is be there for them.

Gemini (the Twins) 22 May - 21 June Don’t be flashy if you’re trying out something new. All that talk beforehand about your accomplishments doesn’t always go down well. People tend not to listen to the real you and that’s more important than what you can do.

Cancer (the Crab) 22 June - 22 July Don’t obsess over something that’s out of your control. Distract yourself with something different to do. It doesn’t have to be new. Just make sure you enjoy it.

Leo (the Lion) 23 July - 21 August Figuring out a solution is something you’re good at, but don’t forget you have always had help in making the right decision. What ever differences you may have had with people, now is the time to move on and make amends.

Virgo (the Virgin) 22 August - 23 September There is a way of working and keeping busy but still enjoying life. Don’t worry about what you’re missing and instead concentrate on what you have. You’ll always be a little better off than someone else, so help where it’s needed.

Libra (the Scales) 24 September - 23 October Sometimes charm isn’t enough to get you by these days. So to show you can do something, you’re going to actually have to do it. Working hard and showing you can put the effort in will not go unappreciated.

Scorpio (the Scorpion) 24 October - 22 November You might have had the time recently to get your creative juices going again. Don’t stop what you’ve started; instead pursue whatever avenue you desire. Your aura is more powerful when you’re stimulated.

Sagittarius (the Archer) 23 November - 22 December Although you can sometimes sit on the fence when it’s time to make decisions, now is the time to show your support in the direction it’s needed. You’ll earn great respect when you put matters of the heart first for a change.

Capricorn (the Goat) 23 December - 20 January Try and be as comfortable as you can when going about your business. The less time on distractions, the more you will accomplish and get done. If studying is for you, then be prepared to get help from an unexpected source.

66 PONSONBY NEWS+ May 2020



Glenys Lindsay

Experienced wedding & ceremony celebrant. Your ceremony will be special, memorable & exclusively for you. T: 09 256 1081 M: 021 868 610 www.aucklandcelebrant.co.nz

Decks Fences Kitchen/Bathroom renovation Demolition Plumbing Electrical


l @reidpainters


021 062 9104


Reduce your tree, hedge and garden maintenance costs INVESTMENT PROPERTY COMMERCIALISATION




CAR PARKING available...

For free advice and quotes contact, Mike

Vermont Street, Ponsonby

021 075 2356 / service@growthmaintenance.nz

$40 weekly + gst


email: columba@cda.org.nz

Clothing Alterations

Alter Ego Roong

T: 09 376 8689

T: 378 9560 M: 0274 746 507 E: Phillipa@hotpropertyrentals.co.nz 1/1 Franklin Road, Ponsonby www.hotpropertyrentals.co.nz


M: 021 032 9128

182-4a Jervois Road, Herne Bay E: ra_cha29@yahoo.com “I get all my bits & pieces done by the smiling helpful Roong... and she’s got Eftpos = sorted...” MARTIN LEACH