Things are looking up in Lawrence
Goldfields boom town Lawrence, which was badly busted up following the Otago flood state of emergency, is dusting itself off and looking to more golden times.
Flood water crippled the town, with two of its four cafes closing, after the torrential rains on July 21.
Some properties and businesses in Lawrence and Milton were badly affected by the flooding, with Kaitangata only narrowly missing going under in the deluge.
However, after three month’s closure, well-known travellers’ stop-off Cafe 26 on Ross, in Lawrence, managed to re-open in time to take advantage of Labour Weekend traffic.
Across the street, a newlyinstalled water drinking fountain is also helping give back the town’s main street some of its sparkle.
In April, Waitahuna-born builder Tim Dickey, 26, put a proposal to the Tuapeka-Lawrence Community Board for the fountain.
He was in Lawrence on one of its famously hot, summer days, and in the heat-wave had a brainwave that the town needed a place to get free, filtered drinking water for tourists and locals alike.
He had approached fountain makers Tapwaterwells of Christchurch for quotes, which ranged between $2000 and $5000.
The community board said yes, and six months later, the gold-pan inspired designer fountain that even has a water bowl for dogs, was installed outside the Lawrence Information Centre and Museum.
Dickey, who works for Lawrence builder David Barkman and helped get flood-damaged 26 on Ross up and running again, used his business know-how to put the concept together.
‘‘I’d have been happy to put up my hand and I’d have done the majority of the work myself if the council’s health and safety had allowed, and if we hadn’t got the funding, I’d have happily fundraised.’’
However, the community board got behind the project, and Dickey is stoked with how the project’s turned out.
‘‘It looks great and exactly what I envisaged.’’
Tuapeka-Lawrence Community Board chairman Garry McCorkindale said it had been great to see a local person, especially one of Dickey’s age, show the initiative to get the project across the line.
Tim Dickey tries out the new fountain, a community project he initiated.