Moun­tain­bike track un­der way

Porirua toasts suc­cess

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By KRIS DANDO

It was cer­e­mo­nial, but more than a spade of earth has al­ready been turned on Colo­nial Knob’s moun­tain­bike track.

On April 21, rep­re­sen­ta­tives of Mana Cy­cle Group, the Depart­ment of Con­ser­va­tion, Ngati Toa and Porirua City Coun­cil came to­gether to launch the vol­un­teer­built trail, called Re­hab.

Ngati Toa kau­matua Taku Parai led pro­ceed­ings with a karakia.

The Re­hab trail is an in­ter­me­di­ate- grade track and links the Colo­nial Knob Scenic Re­serve with the Raiha St walk­way.

It was re­moved from the four­wheel drive track used by walk­ers, run­ners and ve­hi­cles, Mana Cy­cle Group pres­i­dent Rob MacIn­tyre said.

‘‘There’s been a seven-year process to get to this point and a few of us were pinch­ing our­selves dur­ing the cer­e­mony,’’ he said.

‘‘A lot of work has al­ready been done by a ded­i­cated group of peo­ple, and there’s more to go.

‘‘ We’re proud to be the only group do­ing this in the coun­try that has in­volved lo­cal iwi.’’

Hav­ing two coun­cils, the Depart­ment of Con­ser­va­tion and Ngati Toa in­volved made the pro- cess more pro­tracted, but it was im­por­tant to do things right, MacIn­tyre said.

The project fit­ted with Porirua City Coun­cil’s de­sire to en­gage with young peo­ple and at­tract vis­i­tors to the city, he said.

Porirua stood out as a gap in Welling­ton’s busy moun­tain­bik­ing com­mu­nity, but Re­hab and two more con­trac­tor- built trails should be com­pleted by the end of the year. There would then be more than six kilo­me­tres of trails in the area.

Parai said Ngati Toa were sup­port­ive of Mana Cy­cle Group.

‘‘We see this as an op­por­tu­nity for more mem­bers of this com­mu­nity to ac­tively en­gage with Ran­gi­tuhi [Colo­nial Knob],’’ he said.

‘‘In par­tic­u­lar we look for­ward to par­tic­i­pat­ing in the nam­ing of the tracks [that] will likely re­flect tra­di­tional place names.’’

The Depart­ment of Con­ser­va­tion’s Paul McArthur said im­proved trails for com­mu­nity use were a win-win for ev­ery­one.

Porirua City Coun­cil granted $40,000 to­wards the project, and an ad­di­tional $60,000 was raised through other sources, in­clud­ing Hutt Mana Char­i­ta­ble Trust, Mana Com­mu­nity Grants Foun­da­tion and Trail Fund New Zealand. Porirua Cen­tral Toast­mas­ters en­joyed dou­ble suc­cess at the re­cent area J4 speech con­tests.

In the eval­u­a­tion con­test, en­trants lis­tened to the same test speech.

They then had five min­utes to pre­pare for an eval­u­a­tion of up to three min­utes.

The test speaker gave a hu­mor­ous dis­course on ‘‘ The Per­ils of Gar­den­ing’’.

Neville Ish­er­wood of Porirua Cen­tral won the sec­tion, fol­lowed by Jo­ce­lyn Syme, also of Porirua Cen­tral, and Caro­line Ot­ton of Kapi-Mana.

In the in­ter­na­tional pre­pared speech, speak­ers pre­pare and de­liver an orig­i­nal seven-minute speech on a topic of their choice. There were seven speeches rang­ing from ‘‘ The Boy who Changed my Life’’, to ‘‘Let­ting Go’’.

Roger Hynd of Porirua Cen­tral won, fol­lowed by Ta­nia Sales of Porirua Cen­tral, and Megan Klop­pen­burg of Spin­naker.

Photo: MARK HAR­RIS

From left, at the front of the pic­ture, Taku Parai from Ngati Toa, Rob MacIn­tyre from Mana Cy­cle Group, Jen­nie Smeaton from Ngati Toa and John Cal­la­han from Porirua City Coun­cil, at the karakia for the open­ing of the Re­hab trail on Colo­nial Knob.

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