Ro­torua pit stop for war vets

Rotorua Daily Post - - Local News - Shauni James

most of their ac­com­mo­da­tion and food on the ex­pe­di­tion.

“And be­ing ex-navy I’m ob­vi­ously con­nected to them through that ex­pe­ri­ence.

“Th­ese peo­ple get for­got­ten all the time, and I just feel hon­oured to host them and have this fa­cil­ity avail­able.”

She thanked the Har­vest Cen­tre for not charg­ing the team to stay there.

Hav­ing just fin­ished film­ing a hunt­ing show, she also pro­vided the team with some Kiwi food when they ar­rived and or­gan­ised a soak at the Poly­ne­sian Spa.

The char­ity is close to the heart of Poly­ne­sian Spa sales and mar­ket­ing co­or­di­na­tor Hay­ley Gre­ville-Mat­tin­son who is also ex forces (UK RAF).

Jon Le Gal­loudec has come from the United King­dom for the ride. He said the scenery in the South Is­land was epic and he had en­joyed the ca­ma­raderie.

Le Gal­loudec said the char­ity was a great idea be­cause it was help­ing peo­ple both phys­i­cally and psy­cho­log­i­cally.

He left the UK army in 2012, but was in­jured in 2007 in Iraq.

David Ben­fell is a Kiwi but served in the Bri­tish Army, leav­ing in 2012.

He said it had been cool get­ting to­gether with peo­ple who had the same ex­pe­ri­ences.

PHOTO / STEPHEN PARKER

Those tak­ing part in Oper­a­tion R.I.D.E gather out­side the Har­vest Cen­tre Marae where they stay overnight in Ro­torua.

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