Mr Whippy given soft serve

Last updated 05:00 30/07/2014

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Mr Whippy will have to move, while other food vendors at Aorangi Park will be allowed to stay put.

The Timaru District Council yesterday considered one joint site for the vendors to operate from - the northern end of the new hockey turf - in the interests of pedestrian safety.

This option was rejected as it was costly, and it was instead decided three vendors could stay where they were and Mr Whippy would move from the entrance of the Southern Trust Events Centre to beside Wheel Food, in the carpark east of the netball courts.

Mr Whippy and food vendor Alikatz had expressed concern about moving.

Mr Whippy franchisee Gwenda Carson, who is out of the country, had accused the council of favouritism. She was told she had to move from her current site, just outside the stadium, because she was blocking the view and disturbing the grass.

At yesterday's community development committee meeting, councillors rejected relocating the vendors to a new site, with a report from parks and recreation manager Bill Steans showing it would cost upwards of $5500.

"If a cheaper option is sought, the pressing issue is to relocate Mr Whippy and this could be done by placing that outlet next to another at the eastern end of the netball courts or just placing Mr Whippy in the site proposed for all vendors. This option would virtually eliminate all costs," his report stated.

Cr Steve Wills was concerned so much work had gone into the report.

"This has come about from five verbal complaints, from mainly one person."

Cr Tracy Tierney said the problem had been "well and truly overstated. I don't think we need to spend money on a problem that doesn't exist".

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- The Timaru Herald

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