Major highway changes have certainly woken many from their winter slumber. Meetings in Kaiwaka, Waipu and Mata have been well attended and options vigorously debated. Over 1000 submissions have been received by NZTA, more than for any other operation of this kind and many not happy about options given and the lack of consultation. Few deny the need for a better transport system for the north but In Waipu over 80 Brooks Rd small block residents stand to have their properties and lives disrupted in some way and are in no mood to accept the option given as it stands. Watch this space.
After three years in Waipu, Four Square owners Steve and Jo Price have passed the mantle onto Aaron and Kerry Broadbent who assumed ownership just a month ago. Aaron spent his formative years in Kerikeri so enjoys all the advantages coastal living can give. He also starting in grocery there too as an after school job at Kerikeri New World. Moving to Auckland he studied accountancy and finance working first as an accountant and later in the rural sector with a large scale agricultural company but retained his affinity for grocery. Wife Kelly currently works in Auckland as an events co-ordinator but will be seen on regular duty in the shop which is a cornerstone of Waipu business employing eight full-timers and up to a dozen part-timers.
Blackshed, the former engineering shop on Cove Rd which became a gallery and gift shop has also changed hands recently along with the adjacent Little Red Coffee shop. Now under the stewardship of Canadian-born Sheri McKay the Blackshed retained some of its engineering features revealing its history and giving a point of interest and difference and has been home to a fabulous and unique range of art work, ceramics, jewellery, glassware, sculptures and much more. Sheri has lived in Waipu for seven years and has worked in the beauty industry and also been a personal trainer and though this is a new venture she will no doubt fit well with the eclectic centre that Waipu is becoming. She now preparing to re-open on Labour weekend so keep an eye out.
Though only stage one has yet been completed, the Waipu Cycle and Walkway has won it’s way into the top 29 innovative projects in the 2017 Bike to the Future Awards. The brainchild of Waipu school children was complimented by the judges saying the project set a benchmark for community projects and rated highly in the areas of safety and recreation. Winners will be named in Christchurch on 19th October .
Waipu Learn 2 Surf now has new owners. Ellen and Grae Snelling have picked up where Daniel and Emma Harrington left off and are looking forward to a full summer of activity on the water. Ellen has already been a part of the team for the past two years and has over 10 years experience as a surf coach and has surfed in several countries though her day job is teaching at Otamatea high school. Grae grew up surfing in and around Whangarei heads and is excited to be finally fulfilling a life long dream of working in the surf industry.
“ We have fallen in love with this little pocket of paradise and are ecstatic to be having our first little grommie early next year,”says Ellen. See them on Facebook.