De­struc­tion at Stan­ley Land­ing

Matamata Chronicle - - Front Page - REXINE HAWES

Van­dals have gone to ex­treme lengths to once again tar­get one of Mata­mata’s most im­por­tant land­marks.

Po­lice and com­mu­nity lead­ers want help to find the cul­prits re­spon­si­ble for the lat­est van­dal­ism at­tack at Stan­ley Land­ing Re­serve.

It ap­pears a fence post was snapped off at the base af­ter a car drove over it and then a newly in­stalled chain fence, to re­strict en­try the re­serve, was cut and re­moved.

It comes fol­low­ing a sim­i­lar at­tack, re­ported by the Chron­i­cle in July, when vol­un­teer Jim Paton raised the alarm about on­go­ing van­dal­ism at the his­toric site.

Stan­ley Land­ing Re­serve, off Tower Road, marks the spot where Joseph Firth opened his Grain­store in 1880. Ve­hi­cles had been spot­ted at the re­serve, rip­ping up the land ear­lier this year.

Mata­mata-Pi­ako District Coun­cil had just started work to pro­tect the site prior to the lat­est at­tack.

It in­cluded lev­el­ling the carpark, re-ston­ing the en­trance­way and build­ing per­ma­nent stock fence.

‘‘I’m re­ally de­lighted to see the ac­tion taken by coun­cil, then you have to put up with this. This is ter­ri­ble, it’s so sense­less,’’ says Paton.

Mata­mata po­lice con­sta­ble Aimee Searle says po­lice are wor­ried about anti-so­cial be­hav­iour around Stan­ley Land­ing where ve­hi­cles are caus­ing dam­age. The theft of the chain gate, re­cently in­stalled by the coun­cil, has es­ca­lated the prob­lem.

‘‘Po­lice and the com­mu­nity pa­trollers are plan­ning to in­crease pa­trols around the area to curb this be­hav­iour,’’ Searle says.

Mata­mata-Pi­ako Mayor Jan Barnes is en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to speak up if they hear or see any­thing that might help iden­tify those re­spon­si­ble.

‘‘The on-go­ing van­dal­ism of this area is ex­tremely dis­ap­point­ing, the work on the area is not only ef­fort of coun­cil, but also in­di­vid­ual vol­un­teers. I en­cour­age peo­ple to speak up if they see or hear any­thing sus­pi­cious.’’


A car was used to ram the gate­way to Stan­ley Land­ing.

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