Pomare: Farmer Cres the never ending story

Well I had my walk around Farmer Crescent as I said I would, and my opinion is the same as I had before I went, a pocket of forgotten people. But now todays headline shows the continuance of the story around the HNZ eviction which by now in my opinion has reached the point of a legal never ending story, how long can this saga go on             (via Stuff)

Gang-linked families in Lower Hutt’s Farmer Cres will get to stay in their homes for a few more days, as another round of legal wrangles begins.

For three months Housing New Zealand has battled to evict three women residents and their 13 children through the Tenancy Tribunal, district court and the High Court – costing the government department tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees.

The residents’ lawyers were now trying to go to the Court of Appeal, and there was the possibility they could go all the way to the Supreme Court.

Though the women – who have partners in the Mongrel Mob – were ordered to leave their homes by midnight yesterday, the evictions were put on hold for a hearing in the High Court at Wellington on Wednesday.

Farmer Cres resident Patria Tamaka, whose sister Huia Tamaka was one of the women facing eviction, said they were expecting police or the army to turn up any time to remove them. But they had not started packing.

“We’ll keep going and going until we get to the Supreme Court. The girls all know that. [Housing NZ] are not backing down and we don’t want to leave.”

I think most people are well over this story and I was aghast at the cost for this saga  put at $250,000 before they went to the High Court, now it will reach epic proportions. It shows again, the tolerance of our legal system or the incompetence. Other NZers are more deserving of this legal aid, after all, when all said and done its about moving house. Go figure!  

 

Hutt Valley: Fish and Chip Fridays where is the Best?

New Zealands best top chip shop has been annonced it was won by Oceanz in Silverdale, located 35km north of Auckland, in this year’s best chip shop competition. Chip shops were judged on the freshness and colour of their chips, shop cleanliness and customer service. Regional finalists were decided through public text voting, mystery judging and chip fat analysis across New Zealand before the six regional winners and the overall winner were then chosen by a panel of judges. Not every F & C shop entered but it gives a pretty clear indication of quality.

But how did the Hutt Valley fair, and where is your local?

The regional finalist for Wellington was from the Hutt Valley and was So Fine Seafood at 2 Tennyson Avenue, Avalon, Lower Hutt.

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I have freqented here and must say while not highly visible to the public being off High Street it certainly draws the crowds come Friday. Disappointingly they dont have EFTPOS which I always find annoying, and has caused me to travel further afield on occasion.

As for the rest of the Valley, finalists were:

Moby Dick’s Fish & Chip 51 Witako Street, Lower Hutt

Samo’s Seafood 52 Holdsworth Ave, Upper Hutt

Waterloo Fisheries 1 Hardy Street, Lower Hutt

Blue Island Seafood 131 Randwick Road, Lower Hutt

All competitions aren’t created equal and remember it was for the best chip not the fish, but great result for the Valley.

Whats your favourite?

My winner would be Ocean Blue Seafoods, the most cleanest, polite, prompt service I have had in the Valley. They are at 812 High Street corner of High Street and Park Road.

Hutt Valley: Stormy Spring weather hits the Valley

Thursday night brought heavy downpours across the entire Hutt Valley with surface flooding in several areas including the old Hutt Road reported from early morning. The Open Polythechnic was hit by two slips during the night which sent dirt and trees into the building on its eastern side. Lower Hutt experienced the highest recorded rainfall in the region with 69mm from 8pm last night to 8am this morning. Further heavy rainfall was experienced in late morning as well.

Conditions are not expected to improve tonight with further heavy rainfall forecast in the Tararuas and again across the Valley, late Saturday also has more of the same predicted.

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic River levels at Silverstream Bridge Upper Hutt at midday

Several events have been moved in anticipation of the weather including the Upper Hutt Highland Gathering a national Scottish festival has moved already to the wet weather alternative at Heretaunga College.

 At this stage there is no news on alternative arrangements for the Belmont Spring Festival (returning after a 10 year hiatus) but the wet weather alternative day is 31st October.

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic Waiwhetu stream hit 2 year flood levels early Friday morning, but had abated by noon.

Eastbourne flooding earlier in the morning.

Lower Hutt: Two armed robbeies. Robber sort by Police (Update)

Update

A man who carried out aggravated robberies at two Lower Hutt services stations early today is being hunted by police.

Detective Sergeant Dean Simpson said about 3:52am a lone man entered the BP Waiwhetu service station on Whites Line East at Woburn. He confronted the two staff attendants, demanding money and cigarettes at knife point.

The attendants complied with his demands and he made off with an undisclosed sum of money and several packets of cigarettes.

At 4:28am the same man entered the Caltex service station on the corner of High Street and Brunswick Street, Lower Hutt.

“He again confronted the sole staff attendant demanding money and cigarettes at knife point,” Mr Simpson said.

“The staff member complied with his demands and he made off with an undisclosed sum of money and several packets of cigarettes.”

No one was harmed in either robbery.

The male offender is described as a light skinned Maori, aged in his early 20s, of slim to medium build, clean shaven and 1.67m to 1.72m tall.

He was wearing a dark coloured jacket with the hood up, a black baseball cap underneath the hood and a black scarf around his face. He also wore black jeans and black and white sports shoes.

Mr Simpson said Lower Hutt police wanted to speak with anyone in those areas at the time of the robberies, and who may have seen a man fitting the description or witnessed any suspicious activity.

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Lower Hutt police are investigating armed robberies at two service stations overnight Friday.

The BP Connect and the Caltex in Lower Hutt were targeted within half an hour of each other at around 4am.

Inspector Marty Parker says a man bearing the same description at both robberies threatened staff with a knife and made off with cash and cigarettes.

He is described as Maori, aged about 22 and 165 centimetres tall. He was wearing a black hoodie, black beanie and scarf and had a small moustache.

Lower Hutt: Classic Music to drive youth away from Mall

Police have enlisted the help of Beethoven, Tchaikovsky and Vivaldi to drive troublesome teens from outside a Lower Hutt shopping mall.

Classical music wafted from speakers installed in Bunny St outside Westfield Mall yesterday, to the horror of Dane Collins, 17.

“It’s disturbing. They need to change the DJ, they should be blasting out Tupac and Bone Thugs,” he said.

The idea, used to varying success in other areas, was adapted by community constable Paula Harris.

Youths hanging out outside the mall had become a problem for security staff and people waiting for the bus, she said.

A “core group” were trespassed from the mall but came back almost daily.

Speakers were installed outside the mall in November last year to play “classical and calming” music at the youth hangout.

The move was backed by Hutt City Council, police and Westfield Queensgate.

Repeat trespassers were arrested as a further deterrent.

“So far, there’s been very positive feedback about the music and the decreased numbers of youths congregating in the area,” Ms Harris said.

Similar schemes have worked in other centres. 

Lower Hutt teens were divided on the merits of the musical assault yesterday.

Meg Burt, 20, said the classical music had driven him across the street. “It’s sleeping music.”

Discontent with the music spanned the generations. June Waldron, 77, said it was “very dull”. “You want something you can get up and dance to.”

However teenager Caity Randall, 17, liked it. “It kind of reminds me of a carnival, it’s nice and calming. It adds a touch of class to the area.”

 

Epuni: Police seeking help over robbery of Mini Market

A shop owner was knocked to the ground while his mini-mart was robbed of tobacco and cigarettes.

Police are looking for three Maori men who robbed the Epuni Mini Mart in Oxford Terrace, Lower Hutt, at 6pm on Tuesday.

One attacked the owner and knocked him down, while the two others grabbed cigarettes and tobacco before running away.

One man wore a black hoodie with a white pattern on the sleeves.

The second wore black shorts and a white and black hoodie.

The third man wore a white hoodie and black trousers with white shoes.

 

Taita: Police investigating childs death not suspicious

Update

The death of a two-month-old girl in a Taita house this morning is not being treated as suspicious.

Acting Senior Sergeant Steve Braybrook said an autopsy would determine the cause of death.

It was not believed to be suspicious.

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Lower Hutt police are investigating the death of a child at a Taita house this morning.

No details were available on the age or sex of the child and Lower Hutt CIB were not available for comment.

Police, ambulance and firefighters were called to the Taita house just after 1.30am.

Pomare: Tenants of Farmers Cres lose out to Housing NZ

In March this year Housing NZ served 90-day notices to three women living in a Farmer Crescent state housing block after neighbours complained about intimidation, threats and burglary.

Police arrested and charged several Mongrel Mob members as a result of investigations, some of whom were partners of the tenants in question.

The tenants refused to adhere to the eviction notices and the case ended up in the tribunal’s hands.

Housing NZ argued at the Wellington hearing this month that it was simply seeking possession of its units, as it – and any other landlord – was entitled to do as long as correct procedures were followed.

A lawyer for the tenants, Robert Lithgow QC, argued the evictions were discriminatory and breached the Bill of Rights Act.

In a reserved decision, the tribunal ruled in favour of Housing NZ, but Mr Lithgow told NZPA his clients would appeal against the decision to the District Court.

He said that while technically they could be evicted pending an appeal he would be “very surprised” if Housing NZ did that.

Lower Hutt Gracefield Warehouse Fire

A fire that broke out in a Lower Hutt warehouse has been extinguished.

The blaze began around 4.15pm in an oil-fired furnace at Monroes Springs on Hutt Park Rd in Gracefield.

Five fire engines and their crews went to the scene, and police diverted traffic around the area. The fire was contained in an oil tempering bath inside the spring factory. A large column of smoke was visible from surrounding areas but the fire itself caused minimal damage to the factory.

There are no reports of injuries, a fire communications spokesman said.