Achieve­ments hon­oured, im­mor­talised


The Oture­hua, Black­stone Hill and Ida Val­ley dis­trict’s great­est sports­men and women were recog­nised in a com­mu­nity gath­er­ing on Sun­day.

About 200 peo­ple packed the Oture­hua hall for the unveiling of a ma­hogany hon­ours board cel­e­brat­ing past and present New Zealand sport­ing achieve­ments from the past 125 years.

Among the 35 names on the board was New Zealand hockey player Brian Turner, cham­pion New Zealand shearer Mur­ray McSkim­ming, 85, and curler/ crick­eter Ste­wart McKnight, 81.

The lat­ter pair were the old­est sur­viv­ing names to be added to the board and were a part of the unveiling.

Nine dif­fer­ent sports were rep­re­sented on the board in­clud­ing curl­ing, ice-skat­ing, ice hockey, cricket, field hockey, rugby, bowls, box­ing, shear­ing and athletics.

For­mer Man­iototo Area School prin­ci­pal and Otago crick­eter David Hunter hosted the event with Turner’s brother Glenn Turner, a for­mer New Zealand crick­eter, the guest speaker.

The board was the two-year brain­child of Gilchrist’s Oture­hua Store owner John Hel­lier who felt the dis­trict’s most prom­i­nent sport­ing fig­ures should be im­mor­talised for the com­mu­nity.

It was taken to the Oture­hua Work­ing Group com­mit­tee and was met with a re­sound­ing: ’’Wow. This is a great idea’’, Hel­lier said.

He called the response from the com­mu­nity ‘‘over­whelm­ing’’.

Com­mit­tee mem­ber and coor­gan­iser of the gath­er­ing Trevor Beck said the board hon­oured sport­ing greats who were born, lived and worked in the area and who rep­re­sented New Zealand.

‘‘We’ve had such great help from peo­ple within the com­mu­nity,’’ he said.


Ste­wart McKnight, left, and Mur­ray McSkim­ming at the unveiling of an hon­ours board on Sun­day at the Oture­hua Hall.

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