Northland news in brief: Free buses for Rugby World Cup games in Whangārei; woman charged with arson of toilet block

Free buses will again be running to and from Women’s Rugby World Cup games at the Northland Events Centre today.
Photo / NZME

Free RWC buses

Free buses will be running to the Rugby World Cup matches today from Kamo/ Tikipunga, Onerahi, Maunu, Raumanga and Otangarei. Buses start at 1.45pm to get to the stadium by 2.45pm. A second bus from each area will run after this. Buses leave the stadium at 9.45pm and will return to do a second trip.

Arson charge

A Kerikeri woman has been charged with arson after a fire in a Kāeo toilet block. The blaze, about 1pm on Tuesday, damaged toilets owned by iwi organisation Te Rūnanga o Whaingaroa. It was extinguished by volunteers of the Kāeo Fire Brigade. Maria Gillespie, 34, of Kerikeri, appeared in the Kaikohe District Court yesterday facing a charge of arson. She is due back in court for a list hearing on October 21.

Ōkaihau crash

Two people were injured, one seriously, in a crash near Ōkaihau yesterday morning. The single-vehicle accident occurred about 6.30am between Waiare Rd and Wehirua Rd. One patient was flown to Whangārei Hospital by the Northland Rescue Helicopter in a serious condition and the other was transported by road in a moderate condition. Volunteer firefighters from Ōkaihau and Kaikohe responded, along with police and St John Ambulance.

Council scholarships

Applications for Northland Regional Council’s Tū i te ora Scholarships have opened for 2022. This year’s recipients will receive paid work experience and financial assistance for the first time since the scholarships launched. The council is awarding six scholarships, each including $4000 to assist with study costs, plus a paid fulltime work experience with NRC from mid-November 2023 to mid-February 2024. This is the fourth year council is awarding the scholarships, which recognise, encourage and support students to undertake study that relates to the council’s environmental and regulatory functions, while contributing to the council’s vision “Our Northland – together we thrive”. Applications close on November 18. Full eligibility criteria and an application form are available from

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