New community board picks up from the old

Community Board Notes


The local body elections are done and dusted, community boards and councillors have all been sworn in and meetings have been held.

The face of the Lawrence-Tuapeka board has pretty much stayed the same except for one new member. Garry McCorkindale stepped down after many years on the board, to be replaced by Roger Cotton.

Our previous councillor Mel Foster decided not to run again, so we have a new councillor, Jock Martin. Mel was a wonderful advocate for the Lawrence-Tuapeka area and worked extremely hard at the job. Mel and Garry’s experience and support will be missed on our community board, but we are fortunate that both Jock and Roger have had previous community board experience.

There are some exciting plans in the pipeline for Lawrence and the surrounding areas. The Gabriel’s Gully Concept Plan is in the very early stages of development, and community feedback and involvement is critical to this project succeeding. Please take the time to look over the draft concept at either the council office, information centre or on the council website. This is a long-term plan to provide a compelling visitor experience at Gabriel’s Gully, to be integrated with other attractions and historical places the town has to offer.

After a few stops and starts due to Covid, there are now projects under way that were identified in the Lawrence-Tuapeka Community Plan.

One is replacing the old playground, and it is well on its way with stage one, a new fence, being completed shortly. This project is a huge undertaking with a lot of fundraising and sponsorship needed. Council has contributed to this project and community board members are involved, but a big thank-you needs to go out to the volunteers who have stepped forward to join this committee.

Another project is the upgrading and landscaping of the Zig-Zag track. We aim to have work under way in the next couple of months and, with help from a local nursery, to proceed with planting in the autumn.

Through the community plan, an interest was expressed in building a mountain bike track in Lawrence. After an initial approach to the community board and council, a group is now being formed to implement this exciting new development.

Ongoing projects include tree work being undertaken in the domain, removing dead trees and branches that could pose a threat to the walkways. A trial freedom camping site will be completed shortly, and long overdue tree work has been completed in the Peace Garden.

I’m sure many are looking forward to the completion of the Clutha Gold Trail next year and from what I have seen, the trust has done a wonderful job. The extension of this trail will be such a bonus for our district.

On behalf of the Lawrence-Tuapeka Community Board, I wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season.

• Lawrence-Tuapeka Community Board member Lindy Chinnery