Well, the shortest day has passed and now the days are imperceptibly longer. The belief that our worst winter weather comes after the shortest day has come true this year. The storms have arrived!
Some of us love this time of the year, with the cold and the promise of spring. Others feel the lack of sunshine and become overwhelmed by the continues drab. Some of us are afraid of the increased power bills and live in temperatures that are too cold to stay well. There are many hazards to consider – icy paths, slippery steps, damp houses, damp clothes, heating hazards eg: burns from heaters of hot water bottles. This can be a difficult time for many of us. Please look out for each other and yourselves. Stay warm and stay safe.
Our next committee meeting is this week. Currently we are focusing on several matters:
The Ashgrove reserve: a working bee to be organised for September, an arborist review of the trees. See in our upcoming Newsletter for further details.
The Opawaho/Heathcote River Network is seeking to become an Incorporated Society. The Steering Committee has drafted a constitution to be presented to the next meeting on July 29th.
The Red Cross has set up some of their Earthquake Fund money for a South West Christchurch initiative aimed to help communities in this area to be better prepared and better connected. There are several avenues for this, ranging from group activities and ‘road shows’ to courses for individuals to help with resilience. We will keep you informed as details become available.
SCERT (Somerfield-Lower Cashmere Emergency Response Team) we are continuing our work on the initiative to provide a drop-in centre if needed in an emergency. This will be based at St Mark’s Church on Barrington St.
We will keep you updated as these matters progress. Details are in our newsletters which are available on this site. These are our ways of keeping you informed. Please fell free to read.
Do feel free to contact us with comments or suggestions. We are proud of our wonderful community.
This river is the jewel in the crown of our area and we are proud to safeguard this special part of our community. The LCRA is approaching this in two ways: supporting the Opawaho/Heathcote River network and working with our community to enhance the Ashgrove Reserve – another treasure in our area.
We see the two being linked together – both enhance each other and both have their roots in the history of our area. The Ashgrove Reserve was planted many years ago and is one of the few native plantings in the suburban Christchurch. The other two are Deans Bush and the Ernle Clark Reserve, further up Ashgrove Terrace. We have some rare trees in the Reserve, some of the plantings up to 100 years old.
The LCRA is working with the local residents, the Parks & Reserves Dept of the City Council and local experts Alice Shanks & Colin Meurk to develop a holistic management plan for the Reserve through which its native plantings are extended, weeds and pest are reduced. With river bank enhancement that little corner of Ashgrove Tce will become a true treasure.
Some of the avenues we can pursue is to create a ‘Friends of Ashgrove Reserve’ entity through Facebook, call public meetings to gauge support, publish an inventory of the trees, write a local history of the site and encourage loclas to share their memories of living near there over the years, which is already happening. Please contact Sue Bye at email@example.com if you have anything to share.
Several people ave mentioned the water feature that used to be there. It was spring fed and the spring is still there, so who knows what we might be able to do!
Thank to everyone who has been in contact and attended our preliminary meeting. Special thanks to Mandy (our park ranger), Alice & Colin. The precedent has been set by Ernle – let’s see what we can do!
We are all aware that winter is here so stay warm and safe. Keep an eye on neighbours, particularly those who may be older, frail or needing assistance. Make sure you have had your flu shot for this winter, there are new viruses out there this year. Be careful with fires and heaters, stay warm yet keep safe.
Last weekend, we planted more plants in the Cashmere View park. We augmented last year’s planting with hebes and taller grasses to fill in some of the gaps. We also realigned some of the little grassy borders and put in a new border with sturdier grasses. Lancewoods have been planted in the circular bed to give some height. Our thanks to our neighbours who helped.
Greetings everyone, apologies for being off-line for so long. I had some technology issues and am now back in action online. Thank you for the feedback, it is always good to know that we have readers out there who care about our area as we do.
We have several things to report on as we end May and head into June. It is said that our worst winter weather comes after the shortest day, so we have lots more cold to come. Let’s celebrate our winter as it makes Spring so wonderful. However, it is more important that we stay warm, dry, safe and well.
Opawaho/Heathcote River clean-up
The annual river clean-up was successful again this year. In our area there was not as much rubbish as last year, but an ironing board and freezer lid was found under a tree. Again we had an enthusiastic group of volunteers including a Dad and his children who had participated in the Somerfield RA section and then came to help us. We also had the support of the South Christchurch Community Patrol SYCP1. Some of the patrollers came to give us a hand. Thank you everyone for your time and energy.
Cashmere View St planting
Last year we did a refresh of the planting, with great support from our community. This year on June 10th at 11am we are getting together again to replace some of the plants that had died or been removed plus add some that we weren’t able to acquire last year. We have the support of the City Council Parks and reserves department who will provide the plants. We are appreciative of their support.
We also decided that as we had to twice postpone our community BBQ that we would have a post-planting BBQ. So, you are welcome to show your support and share with the neighbours, starting at 11am. BBQ to follow.
In the last couple of newsletters we asked for interest in one of our planned community projects for the year, the Ashgrove Reserve. It was very heartening to receive a good response so a site meeting was arranged. We were very fortunate to have the insights of Alice Shanks and Colin Meurk from the Ernle Clarke Reserve who were very happy to review the trees and the site as we went through it. Mandy Brown from the CCC Parks & Reserves joined us as well.
The Reserve, is a wonderful collection of native plantings, mostly from the North Island gifted to the city. A brief stocktake of the site, showed a very interesting collection including rare trees, seldom found in Christchurch. There was universal agreement that the park needed some TLC. There is some background work we need to do and then we will call a wider meeting to discuss further. We are very keen to see this area continued to be preserved and protected as well as enhanced to be the best it can be with more native under plantings and better tree management. It is one of the few remaining native areas in Christchurch. We will keep you informed.
The New Zealand Fire Service is proud to present a new interactive online project, called Escape My House, which will give us, a true understanding of what it’s like inside a real house fire. It’s been carefully developed to show us why an Escape Plan and an agreed Safe Meeting Place are so important should a fire happen at our place. So, please take the time to visit escapemyhouse.co.nz and prepare to survive.
Once you’ve tried the experience there’s also a mobile-friendly Escape Planner tool we’ve built, which we think is essential for all New Zealanders to use. If you’re looking for the best and easiest way to ensure your whole household knows what to do in the event of a fire, go to Escape My House. It really is simple to use, takes just a few minutes, and is a great way to protect the ones you care about most.
Please take the time to prepare to survive. Plan your escape by visiting Escape My House.
The cleanup is set for May 13th, the day before Mother’s Day on the 14th May. Once again we will get together to clean up our stretch of the river. Our earlier bost had indicated 2pm as a time to gather, however, we need to be finished by 1pm so that City Care can collect our rubbish that day. Consequently, we will meet at the bridge opposite Zeroes at 11-30am in order to be finished soon after 1pm.
We look forward to seeing you there. Please wear sturdy shoes and bring gardening gloves. rubbish bags will be provided. See you there. Further information will be provided closer to the time. Thanks for your community support.
These pictures were taken last year at the first cleanup. The picture on the left shows the beautiful river bank as it wason the day. The other two pictures show the rubbish we collected from that beautiful river! help us keep the river cleaner!
Autumn is here, not only in the trees changing colour but also the arrival of cooler weather and the welcome gentle rain.
Autumn is ‘clean-up’ time and so once again we look to tidy up our areas after summer growth as well as clear away debris and rubbish collected over the last few months. Two dates for the calendar:
“Mother of all Cleanups” for the Opawaho/Heathcote River on May 12th, the day before Mother’s Day. The LCRA will cover the river from Barrington St to the end of Ashgrove Tce. We will meet at the bridge by Zeroes at 2pm. Last year we had a large number of volunteers to clean our stretch of the river and we retreived a large amount of rubbish. You will not need to go in the water, Bring gardening gloves and sturdy shoes / gumboots.
Cashmere View St park tidy-up and planting, June 10th at 11-30am. We have some replacement plants to put in, some new ones to add and we will also do a rubbish clean-up. All volunteers are welcome to join us for a sausage BBQ when we finish and we invite the neighbours to join us.
This year we would like to highlight the Ashgrove Reserve as a jewel in our area. More in our next newsletter. If you have any anecdotes or stories to share please contact us.
Stay safe and stay warm. Remember to make a family plan for emergencies.
This year, the National Wall of Rembrance opened in the city. Various sites around the city were designated for ‘the river of flowers’ where people could gather to remember.
In our area we gathered as usual at the footbridge opposite TPMH. After a few words of solemn reflection we paid our respects with two minutes of silence then proceeded to deorate the river with our beautiful flowers. It was a very moving and eloquent tribute.
The weather has spoken – our Neighbourhood BBQ /picnic has been cancelled again! We are glad for the fire ravaged areas of course. Thus we will find a way to have a neighbourhood get-together sometime soon. We will keep you posted!