Longer hours sought for information centre

MATTHEW LITTLEWOOD
Last updated 05:00 10/06/2014

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Twizel's information centre could soon be open for longer due to popular demand.

Promotions committee secretary Mandy Spearing has written to the local community board asking for the change.

Currently, the centre is open 9.30am to 3.30pm on weekdays, and 10am to 1pm on Saturday. There were three paid part-time staff working at the centre, but a position is currently advertised.

"Some local businesses have voiced concern that they are missing out on potential clients," Spearing's letter said.

"As it tends to be busier in Twizel in the weekends, it would make sense to have it open for longer."

Community board chairman John Bishop said he was aware of the concern.

"It's a question of whether there is enough money in the budget to keep it open for longer, but we would certainly like to help out," he said.

"We're sure we could get it done, but it's a matter of working out how - it could be that bringing in more volunteers could solve the issue."

Bishop said the opening hours during weekdays was unlikely to change.

"Really, it's the weekends that is the issue," he said.

The Mackenzie District Council took over the centre from the Twizel Promotion and Development Association last year.

It had previously been run by the Mackenzie Tourism and Development Trust, but shortly before the council disbanded the organisation in 2012, it relinquished operations of its information centres.

District council chief executive Wayne Barnett said he would prepare a draft budget, outlining various options for extending the centre's hours.

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- The Timaru Herald

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