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Thursday, July 23, 2015

Today 8-12

Friday 6-13

Saturday 8-13

Sunday 11-12

www.wsn.co.nz (04) 387 7160

Samrawit’s success “I want to thank everyone”

By Sam Duff

They may be a similar age, live in the same city, and both be deciding what to do with their lives, but a pair of teenage girls that came face to face last week could not have had two more different starts to life. St Catherine’s College student Samrawit Abrham, 18, was born and raised in Ethiopia. Meanwhile, across the globe Wellington High School student Ciara O’Callaghan, 17, began life in the United Kingdom. Samrawit, a former refugee, met Ciara for the first time last week so she could thank her for helping to fundraise for her recent trip to the Australasian Taekwon-do Championships in Brisbane. Last month Samrawit, who is an orphan, featured in the Cook Strait News as she needed to fundraise $2000 for the trip. Continued on page 2 WINNER: Samrawit Abrham, 18, won four medals at the Australasian Taekwon-do Championships in Brisbane recently.

Thursday July 23, 2015

How to reach us

Samrawit returns with four medals

Phone: (04) 387 7160

Ciara, who lives in Island Bay, is the head of the Wellington High School Feminist Club and after reading about Samrawit decided she wanted to help. She quickly called upon her fellow club members to give what they could and in doing so became

Address: Kilbirnie Plaza; 23 Bay Rd. P.O. Box 38-776, WMC 5045 Fax: (04) 587 1661


Nicola Adams nicola@wsn.co.nz


Sam Duff samduff@wsn.co.nz

some of the many contributors to a Givealittle page set-up to fundraise for Samrawit. In total $2198 was raised on the fundraising website which meant the year 13 student could fly to Australia and take part in the championships without having to

THANK YOU: Samrawit Abrham, 18, and Ciara O’Callaghan, 17, met last week after Ciara helped to fundraise for Samrawit’s recent trip to Brisbane. PHOTO: Sam Duff

use a credit card. Samrawit says the financial support she received from many strangers on Givealittle was unbelievable. “I want to thank everyone,” she says. “Without (this support) I wouldn’t have been so successful.” In Brisbane Samrawit won four medals, including gold for both the individual and team power breaking, silver for sparring and bronze for the special kick. “The competition was kind of scary and tough,” she says. “I thought I would fail. “At the end of the competition I felt so happy and proud of myself.” When asked what she thought of Australia, Samrawit says she was impressed. “Australia was very nice and beautiful,” she says. “The people were very kind.” When Samrawit was younger

her mother made her learn taekwon-do so that she could protect herself from male attackers. Her mother and father both died of malaria when she was just fouryears-old and her grandmother, who was blind due to distilling alcohol, took on the responsibility of looking after Samrawit and her three siblings. Last year, thanks to money from their aunt, Samrawit and her siblings moved to New Zealand as refugees, under the family reunification category. Samrawit says she would like to return to Ethiopia one day so that she can teach taekwon-do to young girls so they can defend themselves. Ciara and Samrawit say they would both like to become nurses one day so that they can help people.

Alana Hagen alana@wsn.co.nz

Celebrating Colombia’s independence


By Sam Duff


Danny Thomas danny@wsn.co.nz Distribution by: Genx Distribution michelle.mcguire@paradise.net.nz (04) 970 0439

Delivered to Southern and Eastern suburbs of Wellington City

ABC Audit 2012: 25,456 copies weekly

Cook Strait News

The largest circulating newspaper in Wellington Southern and Eastern suburbs. Published by: Les & Katrina Whiteside Wellington Suburban Newspapers Ltd

Wellington’s Colombian expatriate community will be gathering together this weekend to celebrate their nation’s independence. Miramar resident Anayibi Loboa has organised a Colombian Independence Day celebration for the hundreds of Colombians that now call Wellington home. “It is a chance to show that Colombia is definitely more than just bad news,” Anayibi says. “Colombia is a tremendous country. “It’s really beautiful, the people are very creative, we’re really friendly and we’re fun.” The celebration, which will be held at Courtenay Place’s The Grand on Sunday, will include a live salsa band and face painting for kids. Her own band, C-26, will be performing at the event. Anayibi says a highlight of the event will

Annette King MP for Rongotai

be the authentic Colombian food, including tamales and empanadas. “People can try real Colombian food without going all the way to Colombia,” she says. Independence from Spain was declared by what is now Colombia on July 20 1810. Anayibi herself moved to Wellington 14 years ago after falling in love with a New Zealand pilot. Now married with two children she says New Zealand is definitely her home. “I just love it here,” she says. “It’s fantastic.”  Colombian Independence Day celebrations will be held at The Grand on Courtenay Place between 11.30am and 5pm on Sunday. Entry is $5.

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PARTY TIME: Miramar resident Anayibi Loboa moved to the area from Colombia 14 years ago. PHOTO: Sam Duff

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Thursday July 23, 2015

Council steps in to manage centre

No board, no coordinator, no satellite centre By Sam Duff

A promised satellite community centre has failed to open and now the Council has taken over the running of the Strathmore Park Community Centre. Wellington City Council has confirmed that Strathmore Community Base Incorporated , which runs the centre, was struggling as a governance group. Council community services manager Jenny Rains says the committee was struggling to manage the day to day operations of the centre. “For all groups we fund through contracts we need to have confidence in the sustainability of the group, governance and operation,” she says. The committee’s annual general meeting was held on June 25 and this is when the board are usually elected to their positions. However, according to former employee Lee Brown there were not enough members for the board to continue so they all stood down. The Strathmore Park Base Incorporated constitution requires seven members to sit on the board and Lee says there were just six people who put their names forward. Wellington City Council has not released funding to the committee for the 2015/16 financial

TAKEN OVER: Wellington City Council has stepped-in to manage the running of the Strathmore Park Community Centre, which is located on Strathmore Avenue. PHOTO: Emma Morgan

year and Council has assumed operation of the centre. Jenny says Council sees this as an interim measure. “(This) will give us an opportunity to look at ways we can reinvigorate community management of the centre,” she says. Jenny says regular bookings will continue without disruption and WCC has a coordinator in place at the centre “We will continue to support the Strathmore Community

closed to through traffic since Monday. The new retaining wall, which is set to cost $240,000, is being put in place to prevent the collapse of the road. According to Wellington City Council cracks have started to

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Base Incorporated committee to assist them in planning where to from here for their incorporated society.” Cook Strait News understands the former Strathmore Park Community Centre coordinator, Kenney-Jean Sidwell, left her position at the end of May. Last year there was anger in the Strathmore Park community following the closure of the Strathmore Community Store, which was run by the community centre.

Locals were surprised when the op-shop, located on Glamis Avenue, was closed suddenly in October and plans were soon revealed to open a satellite community centre. A satellite community centre has not been opened.  Email news@wsn.co.nz and let us know what you think about Wellington City Council taking over the running of the Strathmore Park Community Centre.

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appear in the bank beneath the road in recent months. It is thought the subsidence has caused a storm water main beneath the road to also fracture so the piping will also be replaced. Bidwill Street is expected to

be closed to traffic until late September. Pedestrians will still be able to walk past the construction site. Wellington City Council has contracted Retaining and Civil Construction Ltd to do the work.


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inbrief news Dream fulfilled “How many times do you get a chance to f***ing s*** in the tunnel?” That was the response given when a man was questioned about why he defecated in the Mount Victoria tunnel last month. Documents released by the New Zealand Transport Agency following the saga say Police arrived shortly after the incident but they soon let the man go. Work was being undertaken on the tunnel at the time and the NZTA supervisor allegedly refused to clean up the mess. Contractors from Fulton Hogan were brought in to do the clean-up and the tunnel was closed for 45 minutes.

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New wall to prevent road collapse A popular street which links Mount Cook and Brooklyn has closed to allow contractors to construct a new retaining wall. Bidwill Street, which connects to Mount Cook at Wallace Street and to Brooklyn at Brooklyn Road, has been


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Unwell Wellingtonians are being urged to seek medical help from their GP, as Wellington Hospital operates near full capacity. Chief medical officer Dr Geoff Robinson says staff are working around the clock to provide high-quality care to patients, however those with non-urgent injuries and illnesses are waiting longer to be seen. He says with the cold weather there has been an increase in chest infections and sprained and strained ankles and muscles with winter sports. “All of these conditions can be treated by your GP, and if you go to them early you can avoid getting sicker and ending up in hospital.”


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Thursday July 23, 2015

inbrief news Library spruce-up Renovations at Newtown Library are taking longer than initially expected and now the library is not expected to reopen until September 7. The interior of the building has been repainted and skylights, lights, heating and ventilation systems are being replaced. All items that were issued until July 22 can be returned through the after hour slots at Newtown Library on July 23, 24 and 25 or at any other Wellington City Library with no return fee charged.

Gold rating for accessibility Wellington’s cable car has been awarded a Be Welcome access gold rating – only one of two Wellington businesses to receive such a rating. The cable car scored more than 80 per cent in every accessibility rating, including vision, hearing, mobility and accessibility for parents with young children Councillor David Lee, Portfolio Leader for Accessibility, says the rating from Be Accessible, an advocacy group for people with disabilities, is a fantastic result for one of the city’s most iconic attractions.

Positive signs A CT scan of the endangered Olive Ridley Sea Turtle which washed-up on Lyall Bay beach last week has shown positive signs The endangered creature is receiving care at Wellington Zoo’s The Nest Te Kōhanga and had a CT scan last week at Pacific Radiology. The scan revealed clear lungs and no internal damage or blockages, however, it is still thought to be in a critical condition.

Family celebrates 80 years in optics By Bridget Grace

A Kilbirnie optometrist and his family will celebrate their 80th year in all things optical this year. Andrew Black is the third generation Black to work in the eye industry and says growing up around optics influenced his career aspirations. “Dad having an optical laboratory when I was growing up, I suppose I just had a natural interest in the subject,” he says. His parents, Brian and Diane Black, run an optical wholesalers business from home and supply independents, like Andrew, and bigger firms such as Specsavers and OPSM. Brian says he did not feel any pressure from his dad to become an optometrist and as he “couldn’t get out of school quick enough”, running a wholesalers suits him best. Andrew’s grandfather was the first to delve into the field, taking up an apprenticeship with Barry and Sargent on Willis Street in the 1930s. As an apprentice he learnt about lenses and how to grind them and then worked up to refractions and testing of the eye. “There weren’t a variety of spectacles in those days…they were very limited,” Brian says. In 1935, Brian’s dad founded optical firm RF Black in Lower

EYES UP: Father and son, Brian and Andrew Black, hold on to glasses which are more than 100 years old. PHOTO: Bridget Grace.

Hutt, now known as Black Gates Meek and Dong. The firm achieved acclaim due to a still theatre slide advertisement that frequently played before films. The slide featured a gentleman complimenting another on his glasses, and he points behind to show the store where he bought them. Andrew’s uncle Morris was the last of the Black family to work at the company, retiring

The profession is divided into optometrists or dispensing opticians. Optometrists undertake the diagnosis and issue prescriptions, whereas dispensing opticians design and make the glasses. Andrew explains there is one more layer, the opthamologist, who is an eye surgeon, but noone in the family does that yet. “We’re working on the grandkids,” he says.

Meeting to address Kilbirnie boy racer issue

Street closed A street in central Wellington was closed for two days earlier this week to allow for the erection of a tower crane. Johnston Street, between Featherston Street and Customhouse Quay, was closed to make room for a 350-tonne mobile crane that will be used to install the tower crane. The tower crane will be used in the demolition of BP House and the construction of a new building on the site.

five years ago. His son is following in the family way but works in Worchester in the United Kingdom. Andrew says it is not upsetting that there are no more Blacks at the firm his grandfather founded. “It was their call, it was the partners call…but they kept the name,” he says. Andrew runs his own optometrist practise and opened his store in Kilbirnie in 1997.

YOUNG HOONS: Local speedsters are worrying residents of Salek Street in Kilbirnie. PHOTO: Emma Morgan

Loud exhausts, burning rubber and groups of ‘hoons’ - Kilbirnie locals have complained about noisy boy racers in the suburb. Residents of Salek Street say they are sick and tired of convoys of up to ten cars

doing laps repeatedly on Sunday mornings at about 1.30am. K ilbi r n ie Lya l l Bay Rongotai Progressive Association will be holding a meeting to discuss boy racers on July 28, 7.30pm at the Kilbirnie Lyall Bay

Community Centre. A member of the community policing team will be addressing the meeting.  Are boy racers a problem in Kilbirnie? Email news@wsn.co.nz and let us know what you think.

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Thursday July 23, 2015

TALENTED DANCERS Rahuikura Eruera, Carl Flavell, Aaron Lee and Legion Kelly.

COMPETITION READY: Members of The Company are getting ready for the Hip Hop International in San Diego. PHOTOS: Emma Morgan

GOT THE MOVES: Sophia Ritossa, Stephanie Lee, Taylor Shera and Mia Paranihi try out their moves.

Dance crews head to the States “The Company is the only dance group in Wellington to have attended the competition” By Sam Duff

VIP, The Associates and TCNZ may sound like they belong in television show The Sopranos but they are actually dance crews from The Company, from Kilbirnie, New Zealand. The Company has been busy during the past few months to head to the Hip Hop International competition in San Diego. Cook Strait News recently headed along to a training session for The Company to see how preparations are going for the trip.

Artistic director Ben Uili says about 20 dancers will fly to the United States for the competition, which begins on August 4. New Zealand has a record of doing well at the Hip Hop International however Ben says The Company is the only dance group in Wellington to have attended the competition. Since starting The Company five years ago with two others, Ben has attended the competition every year. He says this year the dancers have been training and fundraising hard. In the recent school holidays the

crews got together about four or five times a week for training, which included fitness sessions. “It’s quite full on,” Ben says. “There’s a lot that’s involved.” Ben, who has been dancing from about ten years, says he first got into it because his family is quite musical and he started dancing with his church. Ben says he is hoping The Company will return to Wellington for the Hip Hop International with a medal.

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Thursday July 23, 2015

Politics meets drag Famous Wellington drag performer Carmen Rupe today met with deputy Mayor Justin Lester to promote free theatrical event Page Turners. Carmen Rupe died in 2011 but is being played by actor Borni Te Rongopai Tukiwaho for Page Turners. As part of the Capital 150 birthday celebrations, the National Library is presenting Page Turners, which involves five famous Wellingtonians from the past presenting their stories. Te Rauparaha, Robin Hyde, Nancy Wake and James K. Baxter will regale locals with tales from their distinctly Wellington lives. Page Turners is on at The National Library on July 25 and 26. There will be three performances a day at 11am, 1pm, and 3pm.

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Post boxes to go this week By Amanda Carrington

New Zealand Post is removing 10 post boxes in Wellington’s southern and eastern suburbs this week. Miramar, Seatoun, Island Bay and Lyall Bay post boxes were stickered for removal in June. Spokesperson for the state owned enterprise, Lisa McDonald, says the removal of the post boxes is due to a decline in usage. “Mail volumes have declined from 1.2 billion items seven years ago to about half that, and will continue to decline rapidly,” she says. After the removal, there will be one post box in Island Bay, Seatoun, Lyall Bay, Melrose and in Houghton Bay. Four will be located in Miramar and two will remain in Kilbirnie. Wellington City Council Southern Ward councillor Paul Eagle says the removal of the post boxes has been done without

the community’s knowledge. “It’s done by stealth. They’ve been removed quietly. “If there are going to be any post boxes reduced then it would be nice to know what the community think,” he says. Cr Eagle says the post boxes are a key part of the public service and the southern suburbs only have one post office in Newtown. “(NZ Post) would have a fight on their hands if they tried to close that post office because it’s also a Kiwi Bank,” he says. There is also a New Zealand Post in Kilbirnie. The local council elections are in October 2016 and the process of voting is all done by post. Only 40 per cent of Wellingtonians vote in the local authority elections and Cr Eagle says a lot of people will give up and not want to go to the shops. “It’s too hard for people to post their mail anymore because there are no post boxes left in this part


LENDING A HAND: Patricia Andis, and her granddaughter Madeline Heffernan, help out with the garden clean-up.


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In a news brief in the June 9 edition of the Cook Strait News it was suggested people may have to wait a few extra days to receive their mail. Lisa McDonald from NZ Post

 Do you still send snail mail? Are you annoyed New Zealand Post is removing post boxes? Email news@wsn.co.nz and let us know what you think. says this is not the case. “In Wellington, people should check their letterboxes every day as priority mail including FastPost is delivered six days a week,” she says.

Strathmore comes together for a tidy-up


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of Wellington,” he says. Meanwhile, NZ Post will be delivering standard mail every second day, three days a week.

Pa rsley, sage, cabbage, broccoli and other yummy vegetables have been planted in a community garden on Housing New Zealand land in Strathmore. Raukawa Street residents, alongside staff from Housing New Zealand, the Police

COMMUNITY UNITED: Locals Miriam Ready, Lola Liava'a Tonga, Sophie Parsons, Leah Davidson, Soul Lauvi-Johnson, Christine Hannah and Dominic Leota-Johnson.

and Wellington City Council, came together last week to reinvigorate the garden. Renee Martin, from Housing New Zealand, says the garden had become a little overgrown. “We thought it would be a great initiative to get everybody together to do the

weeding and plant some new vegetables and flowers,” she says. “We were overwhelmed at how many people turned-up to work together, and the support from right across Housing New Zealand. “I have to confess that when

I first saw it my heart sank – it needed a lot of work. But with so many people it ended up being an amazingly painless experience.” Local lawyer Leah Davidson created the garden in 2012 as a way of giving back to the community.

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Thursday July 23, 2015

Festival of Parliament

NOT HAPPY: Rongotai resident Margaret Davis says Wellington City Council needs to focus on maintaining basic utilities. PHOTO: Sam Duff

‘Maintain the basics’ - resident By Sam Duff

Council needs to spend more money fixing pot holes and maintaining roads rather than wasting money on cycleways and other expensive luxuries, according to a Rongotai resident. Margaret Davis says that earlier this month she contacted Wellington City Council about a pot hole on Rongotai Road near the entrance to Salek Street. Within a week Council contractors had visited the site and filled in the hole. Margaret says she was very pleased however the hole soon reappeared. “For roads to break up like that it means they are not proper roads,” Margaret says. “Cars just break through the stuff Council use to fill them in.”

The first Festival of Parliament is on from 27 July to 5 August and features a range of events for the public to explore and find out more about Parliament. This Festival follows on from Wellington City Council’s Capital 150 celebration, which provides a great opportunity to open up Parliament – your House. Events take place in Bowen House, the Beehive, Parliament House and the Parliamentary Library. You can visit the public gallery and join former MPs to find out more about question time, learn how select committees work and how to have your say on today’s issues, and hear from MPs about the differences between Government and Parliament, Ministers and MPs,

 See www.festivalparliament.nz for more details, stay updated on our Facebook page /festivalparliament and follow us @NZParliament. Join in, and take the opportunity to participate in your Festival of Parliament.

27 July 05 August

When Cook Strait News visited the site with Margaret last week the hole had once again been filled in by WCC. However, Margaret says it will not be long before it is back. Wellington City Council spokesman Richard MacLean says the good news is that Rongotai Road is due for resurfacing this financial year. Margaret says Wellington City Council needs to get its priorities straight and focus on the basic utilities before increasing rates and spending money on things such as cycleways.

Celebrate 150 years of Parliament in Wellington

 What do you think? Email news@wsn. co.nz to let Cook Strait News know what you think about the Council’s spending priorities.


Join us for events and behind the scenes tours and find out more about your Parliament.

Body and Soul Lifestyle Expo


lists and electorate. Nga Taonga Sound and Vision will be presenting a lively compilation of newsreel, documentary and TV clips covering Parliaments history, from 1910 to 2010. Other events include art exhibitions and a variety of tours that explore the history of Parliament, including the iconic Parliamentary Library, go behind the scenes and focus on the portraits and larger than life personalities of Parliament. PBA


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Thursday July 23, 2015

Pop-up village to return

Costume guru of 25 years By Amanda Carrington

It is not every day a Wellington costume designer gets to create an outfit for Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s famous Sherlock Holmes character. But for Seatoun’s Gillie Coxill, creating that one costume, or 15 of them, is something she is very fortunate to do. For more than 25 years Gillie has been working on more than 100 plays. Her latest one is The Hound of the Baskervilles, a Sherlock Holmes thriller, at the Circa Theatre. The play only features four men who each have to play 15 different characters so they have 15 different costumes throughout the night, including a few female dresses. “It's only a matter of 15 seconds before the characters become something else,” she says. “(The men) have very little time to change so it’s easier to create something that they can put on in seconds to give the impression that they are woman.” Gillie is using woolly tweed and checkered coats with top hats and caps to bring the 1890’s story to the stage. “It's quite a good country and masculine look.” Gillie says she loves creating costumes for theatre. She has been involved in film and TV costume making but finds theatre has different challenges with “no chance to stop and redo it”. She works from her studio at

STAGE READY: Actors Nigel Collins, William Kircher, Gavin Rutherford and Andrew Foster will star in The Hound of the Baskervilles at Circa Theatre. PHOTO: Stephen A’Court

home and is a big collector of vintage items. G i l l ie wo rke d a t t h e Cosprop Costume Rental Company in London where they hire and make-to-hire period costumes for stage production and television, one of these is Downton Abbey. She also studied textile design and went to Croydon University in London for five years where she learnt costume making techniques. Costume making also runs

in the family with her mum teaching her a few things. The Hound of the Baskervilles is set in London and Devon in 1890 and follows the storyline of a man who is found dead in supernatural circumstances. The world-famous detective Sherlock Holmes and his assistant Dr Watson go to Devon to uncover the mystery. The Hound of the Baskervilles is on at Circa Theatre from July 25 till August 29.

IN COSTUME: Gille Coxill, from Seatoun, has designed the costumes for Circa Theatre’s latest show, The Hound of the Baskervilles. PHOTO: Amanda Carrington


Riddiford St / Constable St Intersection TIME: 3 NIGHTS DATES: 24th-26th August 2015


Daniell St / Constable St Intersection TIME: 1 NIGHT DATES: 18th August 2015


Owen St / Constable St Intersection TIME: 1 NIGHT DATES: 19th August 2015


Coromandel St / Constable St Intersection TIME: 1 NIGHT DATES: 20th August 2015


Running of Contact Wire DATES: 28th - 30th TIME: 3 DAYS August 2015

A pop-up village which occupied the Taranaki Street Wharf for 12 weeks last summer is set to return to the city next year. The venture involved emerging artists and designers transforming 12 shipping containers into tiny shops and designer studios. Wellington City Council says having the pop-up village added more than $250,000 to the local economy. The initiative is the brainchild of Wendy Jasper and Helena Tobin, the team behind the Underground Market. “The pop-up village is a business incubator for emerging creative businesses and a stepping stone for them to go on to bigger things,” Wendy says. “It’s a refreshing change from High Street shopping too,” adds Helena. “There’s something magic about being able to purchase souvenirs made by genuine Wellingtonians.” The village is a simple and very costeffective way to get exposure for business start-ups, according to deputy Mayor Justin Lester. The organisers are already gathering a list of potential new tenants for the 2016 village. “There are so many promising new creative businesses in our region, and this is such an innovative way to introduce them to the market,” Wendy says. The next market will open January through to mid-March.  For more information go to www. undergroundmarket.co.nz.


10 Thursday July 23, 2015

readers have their say... Find out the WORD on the Street.

Question: Where do you see yourself in five year’s time?

Mary Buchanan, Kilbirnie

Leo Buchanan, Kilbirnie

Martina Danuser, Karori

Denina Fitisemanu, Island Bay

Hine Namana, Kilbirnie

“Still be here, (I have) a chance of travelling overseas to see family. But mainly sorting out things about my life and things in the world.”

“50 per cent chance I could be dead, 50 per cent chance I could be alive. If still alive I will still be in Kilbirnie and thinking more than drinking.”

“Travelling and working abroad in the South America, I have never been before.”

“Staying in Island Bay, settling down and enjoying living with my family. That’s the best part about Island Bay, it has such a family atmosphere and is a nice community.”

“Carry on the way I’m living, but to have a house, car and food.”

Harry Matehaere, Strathmore “Bettering myself at what I am doing now, try changing my life around.”

LETTERS to the editor The Wade-Brown Memorial Runway Extension Dear Ed, having previously vented my spleen over the Wade-Brown Memorial Cycleway to Nowhere, I now turn my attention to the Memorial Runway Extension. This is another expensive waste of ratepayer funds on a project precious few want or need, least of all the airlines! I am minded to support the views of Allan Jenkins and Frances Rudland in last week’s issue. Perhaps Celia's vanity project might more properly be a Memo-

Could not be more clear on cycleway

rial Coastal Road from Breaker Bay to Island Bay. Wide enough for motorists and cyclists to co-exist. Instead of dumping rubble at the end of the existing runway, it could be used to prevent the on-going erosion and firmly establish the coastline. Now that Celia, would be a truly inspiring memorial Tony Sutcliffe, Strathmore

Dear Ed, a huge, loud and resounding NO to the Island Bay cycleway proposal from me! Utter nonsense from the cycle crazed mayor yet again! It will never get beyond Wakefield Park. Absolutely barking mad concept is the only way to describe it in my opinion! Leave The Parade alone Wellington City Council and focus on your core duties! Roger Pickering, Berhampore LET THE WORK BEGIN: Wellington City Council signed-off on the Island Bay Cycleway earlier this month. PHOTO: Sam Duff

Cycleway will be dangerous for all Dear Ed, reading the letters in your paper (CSN, July 9) regarding the Island Bay cycle lanes I felt compelled to write. As a cyclist of many years I believe the proposed cycle lanes are dangerous for all road users. I have discussed this with many cyclist friends and we are all in agreement

that we certainly won’t be using this cycle lane. One wonders what the point of it is? It will certainly not be making The Parade safer for cyclist – in fact quite the opposite for all. Eleanor Beach, Happy Valley

Why won’t the Mayor listen?

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Dear Ed, It makes no sense at all that the Mayor is determined to ram thru the controversial Island Bay cycleway. Why won’t she and her councillors listen, one wonders? The Parade is possibly the widest and safest street in Wellington with excellent visibility for cyclists, motorists and

pedestrians. As it is currently, it’s an excellent road for parents to teach their children how to “cycle safely and to learn the road rules”. It is a foolish vanity project and I’m sure the next election vote will confirm this. Geena Ross, Brooklyn

Bring back Susan and the op-shop Dear Ed, a few months ago the Strathmore Community Centre unceremoniously ejected a very good op-shop in Strathmore in order to set up a satellite centre on the site. Rumour has it that their “satellite” has crashed, without ever getting off the ground! Bring back the op-shop!

It had a far more successful function and outreach in the community. Especially when run by its previous manager Susan. Bring back Susan too – if she will come back. By comparison to the satellite her new little shop in Caledonia Street is flying high. F. Rudland, Breaker Bay

Letters on issues of community interest are welcomed. Guidelines are that they should be no longer than 150 words. They must be signed and a street address provided to show good faith, even if a

nom de plume is provided for publication. Send or fax them to the address on page two, or email them to samduff@wsn.co.nz. Please note that your name and street address must also be provided in e mails.

Thursday July 23, 2015

LETTERS to the editor


continued on page 15

Advocating for efficient and sustainable postal delivery Dear Ed, your current poll on the delivery of letters (CSN, July 9) is based on NZ Post reducing its delivery days because it says people are writing fewer letters. However NZ Post's response to the decline in letter volumes is less about the economics of declining mail volumes, and more to do with a Govern-

ment driving its privatisation agenda through traditional state services. The constant Government pressure on NZ Post to make cost savings has led to the reductions in services which directly advantage private sector mail companies. At the same time posties are required to subsidise NZ Post's

competitors by delivering some of the mail of private sector mail companies. NZ Post has not denied that it is engaged in a process of “privatisation by stealth”. The Postal Workers Union continues to strongly advocate for an efficient and sustainable state owned postal delivery network meeting the needs of

both citizens and businesses. John Maynard, District president, Postal Workers Union of Aotearoa CHANGES: Beginning this month New Zealand Post will be delivering letters to letter boxes in urban areas every second day. PHOTO: Emma Morgan

Speed hump opponent ‘spot on’ Dear Ed, Mike Bieniowski is spot on regarding the proposal to install speed humps and speeding in Clyde St (CSN, July 9). Speeding is not a problem in Clyde St and the reason the council is doing more trafficspeed surveys is because the speed data they were using was more than five years old and the measurement window used skewed the results. The street definitely becomes

one way during school drop off and pick up times and it is quite simply impossible to speed in the street at this time. The real problem that exists is parents parking irresponsibly on dotted yellow lines, across driveways, on resident’s property and not escorting their children from their cars when they drop them off or pick them up from the non-footpath side of the street. Living between the two schools

we’ve had first-hand experience of all of these things and once had to call parking enforcement because a parent had parked half on our property and half on the footpath stopping us from getting out of our driveway for half an hour. Their excuse: I was running late dropping him of to his music lessons! Our view is that the best solution would be to establish speed

humps. I have lived on Clyde St across a 21 year period. I do not agree with the opinions reported of Mr Bienowski

100 or so metres to school. Incidentally, these are all measures that are described in the NZTA’s guidelines for traffic safety around schools. The installation of speed humps are not mentioned because as stated by one the council’s traffic engineers at a public meeting last year they don’t work. W & S Hall, Island Bay

Speed humps, Council chumps!

Strongly in support of speed humps on Clyde St Dear Ed, in your paper of 9 July, you asked for comments on this issue (speed humps on Clyde Street in Island Bay). I strongly support the speed

restrictions during drop off and pick up times, safe pick up and drop off zones and install additional raised pedestrian crossings. With proper pedestrian crossings along safe foot-pathed access routes the drop off zones wouldn’t need to be right outside the schools. It certainly wouldn’t do any harm and in fact it would be healthier for the children to walk

and I have to wonder if he is confusing Clyde St for somewhere else. Murray Parker

Dear Ed, good on Mike Bieniowski (CSN, July 9) for speaking out about the ridiculous proposal to install seven speed humps along Clyde Street. T h is latest madness just confirms that the Council has

seriously lost the plot and is spending our hard earned rates very unwisely. Let’s not even mention The Parade embarrassment. Patsy Morgan, Island Bay

(what matters most) with parenthood, marriage (or cohabitation), and home life. Even if she has an affluent husband/paramour who is easily able to support her and their children on his one income, her vanity must be satisfied by a lifetime career that comes before her spouse and kids. Kids generally used to enjoy walking or biking moderate distances together, to and from

school in good weather; and the exercise must help to reduce child-obesity, now very common. They still could, even though nowadays not having a decent stay-at-home mother, which is what at least 80 percent of working wives/mothers would like to be, but think they must have the money from a paid job. H Westfold, Miramar

Mr Westfold’s thoughts on Mum’s in four wheel drives Dear Ed, as the general subject arose in your July 9 issue, I'm prompted to say that it has exercised my mind since I came to live in Miramar at New Year 2007. I mean mothers who drive their pre-secondary children to school, nearly always in lumbering 4WD vehicles. The practice has grown from a combination of feminism, snobbery, child-spoiling, and

paranoia about supposed paedophiles waiting to molest children on their way to and from school. But in most cities, large towns, and their suburbs, that route is entirely along the open streets of built-up areas, in full public view, with no cover for lurking molesters. Further, the distance between home and school is not usually great; so molestation is




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The trees will be looked after by fruit tree guardians. More trees will be planted next year and the Council will be looking for fruit tree guardians in Miramar, Roseneath, Strathmore, Mt Victoria and Brooklyn.  If you are interested in volunteering as a fruit tree guardian contact Sarah Adams on 803 8361 or email sarah.adams@wcc. govt.nz.


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More than 80 fruit trees are set to be planted throughout Wellington during the next two months by volunteers from Worker Bee Inc. The trees will be planted at 18 sites throughout Wellington as part of the second year of the Council’s fruit tree guardian programme. 36 trees were planted on 13 sites throughout the region in 2014. Members of Worker Bee Inc. are volunteering their time to plant these trees in return for trees to be planted in a community orchard in Karori. Worker Bee volunteer Connor Boyle says helping to plant trees gives him a great deal of satisfaction. “I know that in a small way I’m contributing to the creation of a resilient, sustainable local food system for Wellington,” he says. A variety of trees will be planted including heritage varieties of apple, pear, plum and feijoas. Fruit trees have been planted in Strathmore, Island Bay, Mount Victoria, Berhampore, Southgate, Brooklyn and other suburbs.

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14 Thursday July 23, 2015

MINUTES WITH: Captain Joe Serevi

Kilbirnie Salvation Army What would Cook Strait News readers be shocked to know about you? At 12 years old I left school and spent the next 18 years working on the farm. I met a New Zealand lady in Fiji who helped me understand kiwi culture and she later became my wife. We now work together for the Salvation Army.

What would you change about the world? I would change people’s negative attitudes and behaviours towards themselves and each other. So that people can get along with one another in love and acceptance


Who is one person, dead or alive, you would love to have a meal with? I would like to have a meal with Jesus Christ

What meal do you never get sick of eating? Lamb Shanks - I could eat them all day.

If you could be somebody for a day who would it be? Martin Luther King Jnr, because he fought for what is right. Everyone is equal in God’s eyes if we work together.

Who is your best friend and why? My dear wife Jeannine, because she is a great wife, mother and friend.

What would your super power be and why? I would like to have superman powers to be able to fly and sense when someone is in need or in trouble.

What is the best thing in your life right now? My God, my family, my community and my church family. From yodelling cats and surfing dogs to collapsing buildings and other outrageously excitable shenanigans – this is where readers share what is going UP and DOWN in the Eastern and Southern suburbs. Have you got an anonymous THUMBS UP or THUMBS DOWN to share with Cook Strait News readers? Text to 022 322 4811 or email to news@wsn.co.nz.



Text your thumbs up/thumbs down to 022 322 4811 THUMBS DOWN to Fonterra making 523 staff members redundant. THUMBS UP to Cadbury jaffa chocolate. Nom nom nom. THUMBS DOWN to our recent weather on the South Coast. A tad miserable. THUMBS UP to the orcas that visited Owhiro Bay on Wednesday last week. Awesome sight. THUMBS UP to St. George’s and the choir of Christ’s College, Cambridge, for a lovely evening of song. Hope there will be many more concerts in the future!

THUMBS UP to Wellington City having been our fantastically supper little capital city for 150 years! Happy birthday Welling-town!



THUMBS DOWN to the New Zealand Labour party for their xenophobic release of Chinese sounding surnames last week. A sad day in NZ politics. THUMBS UP to Leo’s Superb Seafood in Newtown for their expertly crafted, crunchy fish and chips, and for their always-speedy service! THUMBS DOWN to Cook Strait News and “Thumbs up thumbs down” for blithely suggesting global warming is a good thing, and making other overly simplistic generalisations that insult your readers’ intelligence.

THUMBS DOWN to Pascall milk bottle lollies for not actually containing milk. The company has changed the recipe for the lollies which were always, quite frankly, a little gross.

got milk?

Cook Strait News welcomes the public to submit any THUMBS UP, THUMBS DOWN comments to 022 322 4811 or news@ wsn.co.nz. We reserve the right not to publish any malicious or ill-spirited entries. Keep it friendly guys!

By Russell McQuarters By Russell McQuarters

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Thursday July 23, 2015

Celebrations for local Scout group A local Scout group celebrated the end of the term in a variety of ways recently, including visiting a local restaurant to see how a commercial kitchen works. The Eastern Bays Scout Group have been making their own stoves to cook sausages, doing colouring in activities and visiting restaurants. The group is based in Worser Bay and members come from throughout the Miramar Peninsula and from further afield.  For more information about the Eastern Bays Scout Group contact group leader Morris van Voornveld on 0274958289.

COLOURING IN: The Eastern Bays Scout Group Keas get down to business with some serious colouring in.


Four decades on for Newtown advice bureau By Sam Duff

After a name change and several changes in location during the years the Newtown Citizens Advice Bureau is preparing to celebrate its 41st birthday next week. Founder David Robertson, who now lives in the suburb of Northland, says the organisation has gone from being a fringe organisation to being incidental to more mainstream council functions. Born and raised in the United Kingdom, David says he moved to Wellington in 1972 and was soon appointed a community services officer by Wellington City Council. He was the first of his kind. Council owned a vacant site on the corner of Constable and Daniel Streets in Newtown and the Newtown Legal Advice Service had been operating from here, David says. He says the location quickly became the base for a range of other community activities, including a playground, a food co-op and holiday programmes. A core group of volunteers got together and the Newtown Information Service was soon launched. Volunteers included uni-

versity students, a fireman, two retired nuns and people who had themselves approached the service for assistance. “The key principals were that the service was based in the community and reflected local issues and concerns,” David says. He says the information service marked the beginning of the modern day Citizens Advice Bureau which was involved in a movement to set-up a national organisation in 1974. This was when the information centre changed its name to become the Newtown Citizens Advice Bureau. Once the national organisation was set-up so was proper training for volunteers which emphasised the CAB was not a counselling service, David says. After a brief move to the Plunket rooms at the back of the Newtown Library a more permanent home for the CAB and the community services office was on the horizon. David says in 1977 the former Church of Christ Building on Colombo Street came onto the market and after acquiring funding the building was purchased by Council. Almost four decades later

LOOKING BACK: Cook Strait News last week spoke to Newtown Citizen’s Advice Bureau founder David Robertson about the organisation’s 41st birthday. PHOTO: Emma Morgan

and the Colombo Street site continues to house the Citizens Advice Bureau and the Newtown Community and Cultural Centre. After ten years with Wellington City Council David says he left and went back to university, eventually work-

ing in social policy rather than on the front lines.  For more information about the Newtown Citizen’s Advice Bureau go to cab.org.nz/acabnearyou/ newtown/Pages/home. aspx

LETTERS to the editor Premature to make judgment on Clyde Street Dear Ed, on June 28 an Island Bay resident driving up Mersey St was smashed into by a youth driving at high speed along Clyde St and was hospitalised for three days. Her car is a write off.

It is premature to say Clyde Street wouldn’t benefit from speed bumps. This awful incident happened right when CSN correspondents defended the safety of Clyde Street. H Scobie, Island Bay

A common misconception about housing Dear Ed, in response to the government’s plan to require rental properties to be insulated, you quote the Mayor saying insulation will improve the health of tenants. This is a continuation of the common misconception that insulation is the great fix all for our houses. Along with a lot of others, I live in

an uninsulated house and am healthy. The issue is how we use our houses. If people continue to leave their windows shut, don’t ventilate bathrooms, don’t open curtains and use portable gas heaters, insulating their houses will just exasperate the unhealthy outcomes. Bruce Welsh, Kilbirnie

Look at Europe and their tiny streets Dear Ed, so many letters to the Editor about the Island Bay cycle lane, unbelievable, worrying about not being able to park outside their house, not backing out of driveways (which by the way is against the law). Europeans live very successfully with tiny small streets which include cycleways everywhere; in fact cyclists get the right of way, in the Netherlands they are now building them using solar

panels to ride on. No I am not a cyclist, but would be if there were more cycleways as would many others, especially our children being able to safely ride their bikes to school again, like we did before we had all these cars, a much healthier way to travel. Ditch cars and bring in cycleways, this will reduce many many health issues. Maria Payne

A vote for Young and Eagle Dear Ed, racism is a dirty word, not to be used lightly. Jack Yan’s claim that Wellington “is racist at a political level” (CSN, July 16), that those who fail to vote for him are racist, says all too much about his ego and his character. I would never vote for Yan because I disagree with his ideas. It’s as simple as that.

In fact I would never vote for Celia because I disagree with her ideas, but that does not make me sexist. I will vote for the combination of Nicola Young and Paul Eagle because their focus is on repairing and caring for the basic infrastructure of the city, not for airy-fairy dreams. John Robinson

Streets are designed in favour of motorists Dear Ed, in the Cook Strait News ( July 16) there were several people complaining about the Island Bay Cycleway. These people are all motorists who believe they own the whole street from curb to curb and some think they own the walk path too. If they were forced to use a bike to commute to work they would change their mind on this topic. They complain about how inconvenient it is. The streets in wellington (and this is true in many countries) are designed for motorist first and pedestrians and cyclists are only

considered if absolutely forced to do so. The roads are bloody inconvenient for bicycles and pedestrians but no one says anything about that. Ideally we would have more public off street free (or low cost) parking, no on-street parking The reason more people are not using cycles or public transport is it’s unsafe, expensive, inefficient and streets are designed in favour of motorists and no one else. To the guy who does not like speed bumps (SLOW DOWN). George Marcotte

Reassessing the theory Dear Ed, my theory that H. Westfold was the fictional creation of some bearded Aro Valley subversive was incorrect (CSN, June 22). On further reflection, his uniform content (and multiple exclamation marks) show that we are dealing with machine, not man.

This autonomous, letter-writing, randombiblical-insult-generator is likely a Trojan horse for a virus aiming for your hard-drive. I hope the Cook Strait News has a firewall capable of protecting your confidential sources! E. Thomas, Newtown

16 Thursday July 23, 2015 Out and About:


Youngsters prepare to become ninjas, spies

BALANCING IS KEY: Otis, 11, focuses hard on balancing for the longest against Zico, 10, and Luther, 9.

With the kids on their holidays last week there was a lot of fun going down at the ASB Sports Centre school holiday programme in Kilbirnie. Cook Strait News photographer Emma Morgan headed along IN TRAINING: Jess, 9, works hard JUMPING FOR JOY: Sam, 8, com- ANTIPICATION: Sam, 8 and TeTuhi, to become the latest MI5 recruit. pletes his stunt with a cheerful smile. 11, wait to break out their moves. to see what the children were getting up to.

LEAP FROG: Zander, 11 practices STUNT: Ruairi, 11, rehearses his MUSCLE: TuTuhi, 11, works on his NINJA: Lila, 9, practices her ninja BIG MOVE: Lucas, 10, shows off skills. his big trick . his leap frog. MI5 stunt moves. arm muscles.








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Cook Strait News 23-07-15

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