Hibiscus Matters letters - February 17, 2021

By: Hibiscus Matters readers

Black & white (& grey)

Joyce Williams ,Ōrewa
Our new suburbs are very smart. So orderly, so consistently modern. I congratulate the planners, the architects, the developers and the council for producing so many kilometres, hills and valleys of uniform consistency. Why then do I feel the need to put in a plea for some degree of individuality – colour, style, a yellow door, a green roof or even red window frames? Is this now ‘out of bounds’ for Council consents? Is it  regarded as ‘uneconomic’ or ‘messy’, or is it just plain too hard to regulate individuality? Does it cost too much to splash some colour in the suburban sprawl? In the worship of modernity do we need to produce conformity to such a degree that it surpresses vibrancy and individuality? Or am I the only person here who does not celebrate the black and white (and grey)?

Getting things Dunn

Bob Paterson, Ōrewa
I would like to applaud local board member Andy Dunn on his initiative to try to  stop CAB volunteers getting parking tickets (HM February 3). He may not have approached it in the conventional way, and for sure the local board logo is an issue for them, but he gets my thanks for giving something a go. Keep cutting that red tape, Andy.

Parks no easy fix

Hellen Wilkins, Operations Manager, Destination Ōrewa Beach (abridged)
Further to the article regarding Andy Dunn’s issuing of unofficial parking permits for CAB volunteers (HM February 3). Andy was obviously keen to do a good deed for CAB volunteers. It does seem, however, that he has not considered an across the board status for all volunteers throughout Ōrewa. The Hospice Shop, Age Concern, the library and multiple other community groups and businesses in Ōrewa are dependent on our fabulous community volunteers – all of them need to park their cars and all battle the ongoing parking issues in Ōrewa. It seems unfortunate that a Local Board member took an ‘unorthodox’ process to find a solution for one group, and not for other volunteers. Ōrewa, like so many other fast growing urban town centres, has a highly evident lack of parking, which is by no means an easy fix (segue to the ‘Counting Cars in Ōrewa Reserve carpark’ article in same edition). All volunteers face the same daily parking dilemma, yet unofficial parking permits were not offered to them. We (Destination Ōrewa Beach) are happy to engage with Auckland Transport and Auckland Council on any future solutions to the parking issue, which works for shoppers, diners and all volunteers alike – just reinforcing that there is no magic fix for this issue.

Inconvenient PO

Sue Norwood, Ōrewa (abridged)
Which shortsighted person decided to close our delightful Post Office in Ōrewa attached to KiwiBank (which was purpose designed and very adequate) and move it into a miserable corner of Paper Plus? There is inadequate space to pack items, only two small counters, a pathetic queuing area and staff who seem to struggle to cope with more than two people at a time.  I am very annoyed about this as I do a lot of overseas posting to children and grandchildren and I consider that Ōrewa deserves much better for the size and age of its community. Silverdale has a better facility and I’ll go there in future even though it’s inconvenient for me to do so.

Editor’s note: This decision was made sometime ago and the process featured in a number of issues of Hibiscus Matters, from 2018/19 until the move happened last year. The decision to downsize Ōrewa’s Post Office was made by Kiwibank and NZ Post.
A NZ Post spokesperson responds (abridged): NZ Post partners with local businesses in over 800 locations to provide services. This is not a new strategy and it’s a model that works well for customers, who get to keep access to NZ Post services in the community, and also for NZ Post. It also helps to strengthen the local businesses we partner with. In choosing new agency partners, we undertake a rigorous selection process to ensure a high quality of service. All our agents are supported by a team of Regional Managers who aim to ensure service standards are met and a consistent customer experience provided.

Feeling the love

Lucy Martin, Gulf Harbour
Brilliant to see the new column by Bernadette Gee of Magnolia Kitchen in Silverdale in your latest paper (HM February 3). I am a huge fan and have both her books. Looking forward to reading what she has to say in your paper and hopefully getting some recipes and tips! She is such a talent. Makes Hibiscus Matters an even-better must-read!

Mike Pignéguy, Manly (abridged)
Thought Hibiscus Matters’ readers may be interested in a shot of Hobbs Bay on Tiritiri Matangi Island on Auckland Anniversary Day. I’ve never seen so many boats anchored in Hobbs Bay before – there were around 40 – and the photo shows part of the fleet of trailer boats that can get into the shallower water up close to the beautiful sandy beach. It’s an ideal beach, which of course has easy access to the wonderful walks through the bird wonderland within the trees of Tiri.

When Sam Imhof saw this on Little Manly Beach recently, looking like some strange creature from the deep ocean, he sought information from MPI. Hibiscus Matters also put out feelers, and both MPI and marine scientist Clinton Duffy of DOC advised that these are fish gills and gill arches. Plenty of interesting things to be seen beachcombing on the Coast!


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