Cost dims city's lighting welcome for royal baby

21:02, Jul 23 2013
New Plymouth's clock tower
BLUE FOR A BOY: New Plymouth's clock tower was lit up a royal blue last night to celebrate the arrival of a baby boy for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Royal watchers looking for pointers to the gender of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's new baby were in for a confusing time in New Plymouth last night.

Two weeks ago the Taranaki Daily News was told New Plymouth's clock tower would glow pink if the royal baby was a girl, while Puke Ariki would glow blue if it was a boy.

The colour change was at the behest of Monarchy New Zealand which organised for 23 other landmarks, such as Auckland Sky Tower and Christchurch Airport, to also broadcast the royal gender.

tdn clock stand
The New Plymouth clocktower.

Last night, and despite the baby being a boy, in depth Daily News investigations found only scant evidence of blue lighting bathing Puke Ariki.

Indeed, Tayler Morgan, of Arborio restaurant which is part of Puke Ariki, said no diners had seen the blue either and no-one at Arborio had been told about it anyway.

"The only reason I know it's a boy is because it was on the internet," he said.


However, several trees in Brougham St, in front of Puke Ariki, were spotted to be under lit with green, perhaps indicating an alien birth.

Trees in front of Puke Ariki themselves seemed to be glowing a light purple, bordering on mauve, which could have meant almost anything.

It was among this confusion that another Arborio staff member brought clarity to the perplexing situation.

"The council guy told us it was just too expensive to change all the lights in Puke Ariki," Jenna Sisson said.

"The compromise was to just light up the clocktower."

Further investigations confirmed that the clocktower was indeed blue, though subsequent discussion among city residents was unable to confirm what colour it usually was anyway.

"It was red last Sunday," Mr Morgan said.

"Isn't it usually green?" said Ms Sisson.

Taranaki Daily News