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Letters to the Editor


Name change disbelief
We are also upset with the name change of Tara Cemetery to Mangawhai Cemetery. Why was it changed? Surely it is a Heritage Site. We are in full agreement with Sandra Wrack’s letter to the editor on May 28.

Graham & Julie Wintle


Cemetery title correct
Regarding the letter to the editor (May 28) concerning the Mangawhai Cemetery, this seems to be a case of somebody rushing into print without checking the facts first.

Even though the cemetery on Cove Road is known by many as Tara Cemetery, it is in fact the Mangawhai Cemetery, and always has been.

The Mangawhai Cemetery Reserve was created about a century ago adjacent to the then Tara Road school site after an earlier cemetery reserve in Mangawhai village was deemed unsuitable for cemetery purposes before anyone was actually buried there.

Incidentally, my grandfather, James Brown of Tara, was among the group of settlers who were instrumental in getting the present Mangawhai cemetery established and was the first to be buried there in 1941.

Virtually all the members of the Mangawhai Cemetery Trust, who administer the cemetery on behalf of the Kaipara District Council, have family connections in the district going back for generations. You can hardly say they have limited knowledge of the area. They are a dedicated group of people who give voluntarily of their time and resources to ensure the cemetery is an attractive and tranquil place for you to visit your loved ones’ last resting place. The secretary is in fact a descendent of the Browns Road Stewarts and also the Tara Wintles, and would be able to provide Mangawhai Cemetery Trust documents and correspondence dating back to the 1920’s.

As far as the ‘huge’ Mangawhai Cemetery sign at the cemetery entrance is concerned, I agree that seeing the sign for the first time must be a shock to those who have always believed they are visiting the official Tara cemetery. However, to my mind it is an excellent example and entirely appropriate for the situation. I feel that those on the executive responsible for its design and installation should be congratulated, not pilloried.
By all means continue to know the cemetery as Tara, but please try not to feel offended when you see or hear it referred to by its correct title.

Ken Brown

A glass of good health
I enjoyed your piece on ‘Nothing like a good w(h)ine’ (Letters to the Editor, May 28). It seems to me that there can hardly be anyone in the wider community, about to sample a drop from a bottle of wine, cannot be aware of the consequences of excessive consumption. Too much obviously may do harm. Moderate amounts probably no harm and perhaps some benefits. Drastic warnings on labels in my view are hardly necessary.

Good health and wise consumption may well be something that goes hand in hand. However there are probably more benefits that cannot be quantifiable such as the cheer that ensues from a few glasses imbibed while in good company. The sun that descends the yardarm while the clinking glasses are raised, has been a regular event for millennia as you noted. Long may this practice continue.

I notice your admiration of Shiraz and your comment that we haven't mastered this variety here. Have you tried any Hawkes Bay Syrah? Trinity Hill produces some good types as do other wineries from the Bay. On really good years they produce an Hommage – something that is expensive and really enjoyed in the best of company. They have lower ranked labels, still good drinking but easier on the pocket. A different beast than the Australian varieties but both in their own right worthy of the sampling.

Good luck with the new home.

Patrick Miller
[Thanks Patrick, and not averse to trying something new. Will add Trinity Hill to my ‘to do’ list.   – Ed]

Profits before lives
What is extraordinary about the government’s plan to cull (or more accurately kill) some 150,000 cows in the hope of eradicating Mycoplasma bovis is not the astronomical number of individual animals involved, nor the amount of taxpayer money being used to prop up this failing industry. What is astounding is the sheer callousness of the discourse. 

Politicians discuss the cost to production of that number of cows going ‘off-line’, of the $NZ886 million that the slaughter will cost (two thirds of which will come from you, the taxpayer). The Prime Minister empathises with ‘those farmers going through the pain of losing their herds’. There is hardly a mention of the 150,000 feeling animals, who just want to live. 

Cows are intelligent animals who have long memories, interact in socially complex ways, develop friendships and make wonderful mothers. It’s time we started treating them with the compassion they deserve and not as milk machines. No country has managed to eradicate Mycoplasma bovis. There is only one way to get rid of it and the many other diseases born from the cruel and abusive dairy industry, and that’s for people to ditch dairy and switch to soya, almond, coconut, oat or any of the other cruelty free milks widely available on the market today. 

Desmond Bellamy
Special Projects Coordinator
PETA Australia

Questions need answering
I am a member of the Mangawhai Club and have been for 11 years. I read the minutes of the Mangawhai Club as this keeps me informed as to actually what is happening at our club.

Thank you for the recent photograph of our new manager.

I am asking you to publish this letter as I cannot get answers to my questions from the Mangawhai Club.

Which club members approved the expenditure of $230,000 on developing the third green for the Mangawhai Bowling Club? On recent inspection by me, this green has subsided to a point where it is unusable. However the point is that this expenditure occurred without Mangawhai Club members approval. 

The minutes of the Mangawhai Club meetings advise that the Mangawhai Bowling Club hold the lease, however the accounts show that the legal fees for this lease were paid by the Mangawhai Club. Which Mangawhai Club members approved what I believe to be $20,000 on legal fees, which do not benefit Mangawhai Club? 

All Mangawhai Club members should remember that the Mangawhai Club and the Mangawhai Bowling Club are two different entities. The Mangawhai Club, as part of its licences, makes grants to many Mangawhai charities, it is not established to allow use of funds just to finance Mangawhai bowls.

I ask the Mangawhai Club reply via your excellent paper giving details for the large number of Mangawhai Club members who have a right to know where the Club’s money is being spent.

GJ Ware
Mangawhai Club member

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