Kipa Munro from Ngāti Rēhia (left), Jeremy Nicolle, chief executive of Arvida, and Kelly Stratford, FNDC councillor, at the laying of the Mauri stone at Arvida Retirement Village.
Residential clubhouse gets Mauri stone
The Bay of Islands’ iwi Ngāti Rēhia has gifted a sacred Mauri stone to the Arvida Retirement Village clubhouse which is currently under construction.
The Mauri stone is laid at
the foundation of a new building to respect, protect, support and connect the land and its people.
The stone was provided from Te Awa O Ngā Rangatira and it gives the name of Te Puna Waiora to the clubhouse which means ‘the source of wellbeing’.
Ngāti Rēhia have been working with the Arvida retirement community, which is in Hall Rd, Kerikeri, since its inception. The partnership has also included a successful community landscaping plan of native plants and trees.
Once completed, the clubhouse will offer a variety of activities and social gatherings for the retirement village residents.
The Arvida retirement community is still growing, with new one, two and three-bedroom villas now available starting at $550,000 for the one-bedroom apartment. The body corporate fees are $150 per week.
Arvida Te Puna Waiora Village manager Monique Hawker says the cultural importance of the stone is very significant.
“The clubhouse will truly become the heart of our community and our residents will continue to drive our wellness approach called the Attitude of Living Well.”
Present for the laying of the Mauri stone was Kipa Munro (Ngāti Rēhia and Ngāpuhi), Arvida chief executive Jeremy Nicoll, and Kelly Stratford, FNDC deputy mayor, together with a community team and residents of the Arvida Village.
Hui to be held to discuss caulerpa weed
With the highly invasive seaweed caulerpa found at Rāwhiti in the Bay of Islands, locals are calling for a hui to be held at the end of the month to discuss the implications.
The find is the first time what’s known as the “foot and mouth” of marine seaweed pests has been found outside of its Great Barrier Island bastion.
Only a matter of days before the discovery Northland authorities criticised the Government for being slow to deal with the marine seaweed pest. They called for an urgent meeting with Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor citing inaction on the major threat to New Zealand’s coastline.
The Northland Regional Council (NRC) biodiversity and biosecurity working party chairman Geoff Crawford said caulerpa was a considerable threat to Te Tai Tokerau given the nearly 1000km stretch of coastline.
Jane Hindle, from the Bay of Islands-Whangaroa Community Board, issued a Facebook alert to the community and a Russell Google Groups warning.
“If you are on the beaches, out snorkelling or diving, please keep alert and look out for caulerpa seaweed. This highly invasive pest, described as the ‘foot and mouth’ of marine pests, was found by mana whenua at Rāwhiti three days ago,” she said.
“If you spot it, please move it to above the high tide line, take a photo, note the precise location of the seaweed and report it to firstname.lastname@example.org. It will be checked to verify whether it is caulpera or not.”
One Facebook post suggested that caulpera seaweed has been found at Russell wharf as well but there was no evidence to back up the claim.
Te Rāwhiti Marae is home to Ngāti Kuta and Patukeha. The hui will be held at 10am on Wednesday, May 31. Posting for the event said to “bring a plate of food for shared kai because we will not be having seafood!”
Kerikeri Fire Brigade run up the Sky Tower
Every year since its inception, a squad from the Kerikeri Volunteer Fire Brigade has run up the Sky Tower wearing full breathing apparatus kits. Last weekend when the event was held was no exception.
The BA kit is used when firefighters enter burning buildings. It consists of a mask and oxygen tank, as well as protective clothing and weighs roughly 25 kilograms.
It’s the 19th year the Sky Tower event has been run. The Kerikeri team raises funds for the Blood Cancer and Leukaemia Foundation New Zealand.
The brigade also collaborated with the Cruz ‘n’ the Bayz car event in February and raised $2686 through that and through the individual efforts of brigade members.
One of the squad members who contested the Sky Tower Challenge was Glen Scott. He has run in the event numerous times over the years and still says it’s “bloody hard work”. But this year he didn’t train for it.
“Our squad times varied but we all finished relatively close together,” he said.
Two of the squad are cousins, Glen and Ben Scott, and the only woman in the squad who contested the event was Kayla Trye. Her father, Simon Trye, completed the Kerikeri Half Marathon in 2020 while wearing his full protective firefighting gear and breathing from an air tank. His time of 3:21:41 was a Guinness World Record.
The following year, because Covid restrictions prevented him from using a building with sufficient storeys, he climbed the three-storey John Butler Centre in Kerikeri 71 times in all his firefighting gear to claim another world record. He was in Auckland last weekend to support his daughter Kayla and the team.
The Kerikeri Brigade has raised $8022 so far this year with donations still open for another month. In total brigades from around the country who have contested the Sky Tower Challenge have raised $1,490,178.
Russell keeps its police station
A public meeting was held in Russell a year ago to discuss the future of the Russell community policeman. At that meeting a 300-signature petition was sent to various police and the local Member of Parliament.
In response, the local area commander, Riki Whiu, said he would consult with the Russell community “at an appropriate time” and indicated the police would be conducting a review. The factors that would be considered, he said, included the low crime rate in the Russell area.
Bob Drey, chairman of the Russell Protection Society, was interviewed on TV3 on the subject and reiterated the community’s stance that the local policeman must stay local because it has resulted in Russell’s comparatively low crime rate.
Following that interview, Bob Drey and David McKenzie of the Russell Protection Society were invited to a meeting with Riki Whiu and District Commander Tony Hill. They said the police have conducted a review of staffing in Northland and have concluded the Russell police station has an average workload and it’s on a par with other single-manned stations in the district.
The police have, however, determined the Russell police station will continue to be manned by a police person who works and resides within the greater Russell area.
“They claim that the proposed move of the current policeman to live in Paihia was only seen as a temporary measure,” said Mr Drey.
“We believe the policeman needs to live in the area and the Russell Protection Society will leave it at that for the time being on the understanding our police station will be manned,” he said.
In the meantime, the local policeman, Mike Gorrie, was evicted from the historic former Customs House on the Russell waterfront he and his family had occupied for a number of years. It is owned by the police. He turned down the offer of accommodation in Paihia and is now renting on the Russell peninsula.