Paenga-whāwhā (April) 2019 Newsletter

Kia ora koutou katoa. Along with a spot of rain we’ve had some truly perfect days. Plenty of people have been enoying the beach and the water, along with the blue skies and still warm sunshine.

It’s been a quiet month, but there are two major items to report: the erosion study and work to be done at the all-purpose beach access off Manga Pirau Street.

In this newsletter …

  1. Tonkin and Taylor beach erosion report
  2. New improved all-purpose access to Waikawa Beach
  3. Refresh for north and south tracks off Reay Mackay Grove
  4. Property news
  5. Next Committee meeting
  6. Subscriptions and contact info
  7. Do you know: Bittern or Matuku

Tonkin and Taylor beach erosion report

Ramon Strong from Horizons Regional Council presented the Tonkin and Taylor beach erosion report to the Committee at their last meeting. The presentation was comprehensive and took up most of the 2-hour meeting.

The report is available in full at https://waikawabeach.org.nz/2019/tonkin-and-taylor-beach-erosion-report-public-meeting/ , along with Miraz’s plain language notes.

The report is highly technical, but explains features of the river where it meets the beach, some history of the river’s exit to the sea and factors influencing erosion. Perhaps the most important feature of the area is its complexity and dynamic, ever-changing nature.

Several options for possible action are presented at the end of the report. Those actions include doing nothing, which not surprisingly has no dollar cost, doing more river cuts, realigning the groyne that was built around 1991, constructing dunes, and protecting the shoreline with rocks. The most comprehensive options could cost well over a million dollars and we could expect our rates to be affected.

Ramon Strong is aiming to hold a public meeting about the report and options for action, perhaps in the first week of June 2019. We’ve advised him that his suggestion of a weekday evening is unlikely to allow many to attend. We’re waiting to hear a confirmed date and time and will let everyone know as best we can once we have that information.

Waikawa Beach sunset. Photo by 'A friend of Waikawa'.
Waikawa Beach sunset. Photo by ‘A friend of Waikawa’.

New improved all-purpose access to Waikawa Beach

There is good news for those who like to take their vehicles or horses onto the beach. At the last Committee meeting Cr Christine Mitchell from Horowhenua District Council told us the Council have reached an agreement with the Miratana family who own the land between the end of Manga Pirau Street and the beach.

The Council will do some minor improvements and environmental improvements such as planting, including maintenance on the track to the beach. These will not be major improvements. No other work at all is to take place or the landowners will rescind the agreement.

The illegal track pushed through last year jeopardised everyone's access to the beach, but we can thank the Miratana family for their generosity in continuing to allow us to use their private land.

Refresh for north and south tracks off Reay Mackay Grove

The Horowhenua District Council have laid mulch along the sandy parts of the north track to the beach, making it much easier to walk on.

Meanwhile, the south track, which had become blocked by lupins, was eventually cleared after an official complaint to council about their failure to respond to repeated requests to clear it. See Track refresh and Official complaint for details.

Property news

There are a few properties for sale after a bit of a lull: 24 Uxbridge Terrace, 13 Amy Way and 27 Strathnaver Drive.

Next Committee meeting

The next Committee meeting will be held on the afternoon of Saturday 08 June 2019.

Subscriptions and contact info

If you haven't paid your $25 sub yet, it's well past time time. Pay to account 03 0667 0268929 000 AND email wbra.committee@gmail.com with your name, beach address, postal address, email address and date of payment so we can make sure our records are completely up to date. If you have more than one property at Waikawa Beach please tell us all the addresses. Recently, for example, we contacted all those we know of whose properties would be directly affected by the Horowhenua District Council’s rural roads review.

Thanks to everyone who has already paid their sub. Your support is really important to us. Please ask your friends, neighbours and newcomers to join too so we can better represent them.

See waikawabeach.org.nz/subs for other ways to pay.

Do you know: Bittern or Matuku

The Bittern or Matuku is one of NZ’s rarest birds with less than 1000 left. And yet, Kezna Cameron from Reay Mackay Grove has not only spotted one on her property but also seen one on Waikawa Beach Road. She gave permission for me to use her photos below. See her post on Facebook.

Bittern in a paddock on Reay Mackay Grove.
Bittern in a paddock on Reay Mackay Grove. Photo by Kezna Cameron.
Bittern on Waikawa Beach Road.
Bittern on Waikawa Beach Road. Photo by Kezna Cameron.

Ngā mihi nui,
Miraz Jordan

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