Letters : Town centre

Town centre

The council are just not getting their heads around the whole picture of revitalising the town centre ["Councillors debate ways to lift activity", Express, November 28].

Whichever way they look at it, Blenheim over the years has become a tourist town, mainly because of our wine industry, but also for the very many events which take place all through the year. Thousands and thousands pass by our door.

I have lived in this town for 16 years and still cannot get my head around most of the shops and cafes closing on a Saturday afternoon and Sunday in central Blenheim. We live in the 21st century, we should catch up with all the other thriving towns around NZ.

The three entrances into Blenheim are appalling. Imagine yourself as a visitor, getting off the ferry and arriving in Blenheim - it would not encourage anybody to drive into the centre and see what we are about.

Over the years, I have seen shops come and go, they last a year or so and then they are gone. Why is this? Are all the landlords asking such high rents and not negotiating lower rents at the beginning to allow the business to get on its feet. I cannot agree with the argument some people put forward that they cannot afford to shop here. The prices are the same in every town.

If you go to Nelson for the day shopping, it's so much more vibrant and buzzy, and has the feel-good element. We could also have a wonderful market such as theirs.

Council - look outside the square. Get moving and act.



Not impressed

Calling all you young 'uns deliberately making the unsightly black marks on Queen Charlotte Dr and Kenepuru Rd.

We know we are not who you are trying to impress, but how about giving some thought to those of us who live here.

The contractors do their bit and we locals give time, energy and money trying to keep our community looking attractive. We don't deserve your noise and the results of your mindless antics.

To whoever it was in the loud car that came past at 10.45pm, I hope it was only coincidence that you appeared almost immediately after the screeching at the rubbish skip.



Clifford Bay

So let's paint the port at Clifford Bay.

The construction of the terminal-wharf nearly doubled from the last quote. They added more height, length and width for the breakwater but the locals are still sceptical. The buildup of sand and gravel in the bay requires persistent dredging costing in the millions.

The "southerlies" are showing their true force, and heaps of sailings have delays and cancellations for the freight and seasick passengers.

The township consists of a petrol station, truck stop, and a "Moro bar" mentality. No-one invests for fear they will move the ferry terminal another 50 minutes closer to Christchurch.

The joys of the million passengers using their holiday time searching their cars trying to find a sudoku to relieve some of the boredom, or asking their Navman if there is a place like Picton somewhere?



Ugly trees

So, a councillor (apparently un-named) deems a 20-year-old douglas fir at Powerhouse Reserve Park, in Picton, to be "ugly"? [‘Ugly' Picton douglas fir faces the axe, Express, December 4.]


To this practised eye, the photograph shows a well grown, healthy, pleasingly symmetrical specimen of its kind, albeit not a native.

I'd be happy to do a swap if the council pays for the work involved. I'll give the nasty fir tree a home and they can have my tatty, ratty, infuriatingly messy, work-producing cabbage tree to replace it with.

Fair exchange . . . endlessly dropping, mower-tangling, practically unbiodegradable strappy leaves . . . for an annual supply of burnable cones? Bring it on.


Wairau Valley

Frost fans

I note the NZ Winegrowers Association is complaining about the Marlborough District Council's decision to revise the rules governing the placement and noise levels of frost fans. I also note that a group of Marlborough winemakers have launched an association to discuss technical developments in their field.

What an opportunity for the latter group to develop a method of frost control that doesn't intrude on the welfare of their neighbours. They could invite some of our budding young scientists and engineers to help them in their research which should not be confined to frost fans alone but should include all noise-making devices, such as helicopters.

Sleep deprivation is not good for anybody, be they schoolchildren, teachers, drivers, doctors, tradesmen - even people in the wine industry. . How about it?



Deserved to win

I first heard Clara van Wel sing at Fairhall School about three years ago and I knew then that she was going to be a star. This week she has proved that she has a great talent and a great career ahead of her.

Well done, Clara, you so deserve this acclaim.



The Marlborough Express