The Marlborough District Council has released a document entitled “Smart and Connected”.
This position paper asks us to look at where Marlborough might want to go in the future from a social and economic viewpoint. It was prepared by researcher-academic Amanda Lynn, and proposes that the province capitalise on its assets and develop its future so as to benefit all citizens.
It is largely based on an act of faith, but can be compared to the Wellington example of “Absolutely Positively Wellington”. This slogan was developed by an advertising agency and was not adopted until later - and after much debate.
This slogan has inspired a great deal of pride by the people of Wellington in their city, and indeed has put them ahead of Auckland when viewed from a similar criteria.
That same pride and sense of belonging already exists in Marlborough, but has never had the vehicle by which to express itself.
The numbers of new residents and their reasons for coming here are well documented.
Climate, scenery, lack of crowds and traffic, job opportunities, clubs and organisations, wine, fishing - the list is endless.
The proposition the council is putting to us is simple - talk about it. Be proud to boast about what we have, why we love it here, and why we want our young people to go, gain experience and come back to share it.
The problem the council faces is how to communicate this dream to make it come true.
It is easy. Get us talking about ourselves to anyone who will listen. Boast about Marlborough. Make others envious.
As someone once said, nothing succeeds like success.
Michael Veal is a Marlborough grapegrower, a member of the Chamber of Commerce and a businessman.
- The Marlborough Express