Eight weeks' worth of rubbish in Annette Taylor's jar.

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Smashed the trash

Since the new era of less waste, more recycling dawned two months ago some Waikato people have gone to extraordinary lengths to reduce their trash.
The Waikato District Council has no idea how people’s efforts are going district-wide but if even some are doing as well as Gordonton woman Annette Taylor the flow to landfill will have been cut considerably.
Taylor, editor of Number8Network, says her top tip for reducing rubbish is … to get a jar.

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Eight weeks' worth of rubbish in Annette Taylor's jar.

Smashed the trash

Since the new era of less waste, more recycling dawned two months ago some Waikato people have gone to extraordinary lengths to reduce their trash.
The Waikato District Council has no idea how people’s efforts are going district-wide but if even some are doing as well as Gordonton woman Annette Taylor the flow to landfill will have been cut considerably.
Taylor, editor of Number8Network, says her top tip for reducing rubbish is … to get a jar.

Tamahere central

Election contest for Tamahere

Tamahere is to have a contested election for the next councillor to represent the ward on the Waikato District Council for the first time in nine years.

Local man Aksel Jepsen declared his candidacy in early July and when nominations closed yesterday he was joined by Donna Nichols, a one-time Waikato District Council staff member.

The last time Tamahere voters had a choice of candidate was in 2007 when Wally Hayes defeated Andrew Gibson for the seat he has held, uncontested, ever since.

Crime hits school again

A recent burglary at the Tamahere Community Centre and other suspicious activity around the school has prompted a call to keen-eyed locals.

Tamahere School caretaker Allan Wickens asks that anyone around the school area, especially at night, look out for suspicious activity and report it to police.

In recent weeks two large gas bottles were stolen from the community centre and a school air conditioning unit was tampered with.

The latest design of spaghetti junction, centered on Cherry Lane, can be viewed at Wednesday's information day

Spaghetti junction on show

The latest design for Tamahere’s upcoming spaghetti junction – the Waikato Expressway’s Hamilton section southern interchange – is open for public viewing on Wednesday.

The complex State Highway 1 interchange centred on Cherry Lane is set to transform the local road network in northern Tamahere and property access for many who live there.

NZTA and its contractors will reveal the latest design at an information day in the Tamahere Community Centre on Wednesday, August 10 from 2.30pm to 7pm.

Invercargill Mayor Tim Shadbolt has dubbed the bill the "Crushing of Local Government Democracy and Seizing Control of Their Assets Bill".

Councils fight anti-democracy bill

Councils around the country, including in the Waikato, are lining up to fight a central government bill they say will take the local out of local government.

The Waikato Regional Council is calling for changes to the new local government bill to help ensure the sound management of water and protect local democracy, a call echoed by councils around the country.

In the south, where he has been backed by neighbouring mayors, forthright Invercargill Mayor Tim Shadbolt has dubbed the bill the “Crushing of Local Government Democracy and Seizing Control of Their Assets Bill”.

Fibre-optic cable

Super keen for super highway: survey

So keen are Tamahere and Matangi residents for fast internet that 27% of those responding to a recent survey on the topic were prepared to pay more than $1000 to bring it to their door.

Six per cent of respondents were prepared to pay whatever it cost to connect their home or business to the super highway.

Those are some of the findings in the full report of the survey, done in May, that the Waikato District Council has now posted on its website.

Local Events

Pre-schoolers enjoying a session at the Tamahere Playcentre

Playcentre has big year

The Tamahere Playcentre has had a busy year, including extending and renovating its building.
The extension, which has doubled the Devine Rd centre’s indoor play area will be just one of the topics reported on at the upcoming annual meeting on Thursday, September 15.
The meeting, to be held at Two Birds Eatery, in the Clyde St shopping centre, Hamilton East, will start at 7.30pm.

Lining up to learn

Skill school for easy riders

Motorbike riders can take to the track for skill training sessions subsidised by the NZ Transport Agency, Waikato and Waipa district councils and Hamilton City Council in the next few months.
The courses are designed to reflect that at some point a rider, either through their fault or someone else’s, will find they need skills to stay upright, says Mihi Bennett-Smith, Hamilton City Council road safety coordinator.
“These skills are much more than simply riding the bike,” he said.

Local People

Tamahere's Rocco Pienaar with his beloved Kombi

Long sought Kombi on show

Rocco Pienaar spent about about seven years searching for the Kombi van he wanted.

He found it.

It was in South Africa and not for sale but the Tamahere local didn’t let that stop him.

A proud Rex Pickering (Photo: Mark Taylor, Waikato Times)

Tamahere, rugby stalwart dies

Rex Pickering, a Tamahere community and rugby stalwart, died yesterday (Tuesday, July 5) in Cambridge, aged 79.

Pickering and wife Christine were honoured for their more than 40 years of community service and dedication to the St Stephen’s parish two years ago, in August 2014.

Pickering, who in life was Waikato’s oldest living All Black, had a lifetime dedication to rugby, representing Waikato at provincial level and the All Blacks for over a decade.

Our Patch

The Red Cross Book Fair will be at the Te Rapa Racecourse from August 26-28

Fair reveals book trends

The Red Cross Book Fair, the oldest book fair in the Waikato, turns 20 this year and is still going strong in the e-reader era.

In fact, notes long time co-organiser Philippa Robertson the news recently was all about people’s dwindling fascination with Kindles.

Regardless of the debate over how we read the Red Cross Book Fair, held annually each August, has only known one trend in its two decades – an ever growing number of readers eager to be matched with recycled books.

city care

City co to maintain district parks

A Christchurch City Council-owned company is to maintain the Waikato district’s open spaces – parks, gardens, cemeteries and playgrounds – from next month under a $4 million annual contract.

City Care, owned by the commercial and investment arm of the Christchurch City Council, was awarded a 10 year contract that the district council says will improve services.

The 17-year-old company, which already works for councils throughout the country including Matamata-Piako, Tauranga and Whakatane, will make a positive difference in the Waikato, according to the district council General Manager Service Delivery, Tim Harty.

Local History

Back in the picture. Wayne Grattan addressing media following the fatal 2008 fire. (Photo: Waikato Times)

Icepak site sale disappoints

The sale this week of the former Icepak site has failed to sever links with its tragic past.

The derelict site in central Tamahere was bought by one of the architects of the tragedy that cost the life of a firefighter in 2008, former Icepak director Wayne Grattan.

Grattan, who was personally fined $30,000 for his part in the death of firefighter Derek Lovell and injury to seven others, paid $865,000 for the former coolstore site where the disaster played out eight years ago.

The sprawling Fieldays pops up on our doorstep

Mystery flows on

The National Agricultural Fieldays are three weeks away and again sparking interest in the mystery that gave their venue its name – Mystery Creek.

Explaining the mystery has become a hardy annual for writers filling publications in the lead up to the Fieldays, this year on from June 15 to 18.

Tamahere Forum has already fielded a request for an explanation of the mystery which, according to the Cambridge Museum, has grown more mysterious over the years.