50 years ago
❚ A massive search and rescue operation swung into action when
25 students and four teachers from New Plymouth’s Spotswood College were reported missing on Mt Egmont and they were found early in the morning huddled together in a dry river bed, using fern fronds as blankets, the only casualty being a teacher, Mrs K Lean, who was carried down the mountain after suffering a leg injury.
❚ Total chaos reigned on the Taranaki hotel front following the legalising of 10pm closing with 13 North Taranaki hotels opting to close at 7pm and other North and South Taranaki licensees saying they would stay open until 10pm.
❚ With more than 100 exhibitors the 1967 Hawera Hobbies Exhibition, held in the community centre, proved very successful, the chairman of the public relations committee, Mr A Mackay, saying crowds had been so heavy movement in the hall had been chaotic.
❚ With 100 members making a financial commitment, the president of the Hawera Lawn Tennis and Squash Club, Mr S Shera, told the annual meeting it had been possible to call tenders to construct squash courts which could be available by April 1968.
❚ The Taranaki Irish Social Club was formed at a meeting called in Manaia by Mr W Bracken who was elected the first president.
❚ For the first time the Rahotu Young Farmers’ Club had a member, Mr B E Beardmore, chosen to go on an overseas exchange scheme, giving him a six-month tour of Great Britain.
❚ The Hawera Municipal Band, under Mr Harry Farrington, scooped the pool in the A section at the Central Districts brass band contest at Hawera.
❚ Playing for New Plymouth Old Boys against Inglewood in the Taranaki Cricket Association’s competition, A Jordan had the best bowling figures of the weekend with a tally of seven wickets for 24 runs.
❚ Lack of support from local residents had seen the disbanding of the struggling Wai-iti club, the chairman of the Taranaki Surf Life Saving Association, Mr G N Lightfoot, reported to the annual meeting.
❚ Movies: Assault On A Queen
(Hawera Regent), Frank Sinatra and Verna List; Blow Up (State), Vanessa Redgrave and David Hemmings; Torn Curtain
(Opunake Everybody’s), Julie Andrews and Paul Newman; The Appaloosa (Stratford Plaza), Marlon Brando, Antonette Comer and John Saxon.
❚ For the seventh year in succession Mr O E Balsom was elected to the chairmanship of the Taranaki Cricket Association when the annual meeting was held in Stratford.
❚ Sponsored by local youth groups and the Waitara Rotary Club, Waitara Sea Scout Graham John Alexander attended a three-week course at the Outward Bound school, Anakiwa.
❚ The possibility of establishing a veteran’s home in Taranaki was discussed by more than 50 delegates representing Returned Services Associations from throughout Taranaki meeting at Stratford.
❚ A tender of $77,489 was accepted by the Hawera Racecourse Partnership Committee for an immediate start on major alterations and additions to stand facilities at the Hawera racecourse, the committee chairman, Mr D McCarthy saying the new facilities were expected to be ready for the February meeting.
❚ 35 Years Ago: Fire destroys half of Opunake High School; Patea chemist Howard Anderson receives Lions community service award; former New Plymouth man Mr Graeme Connell, appointed Motunui synthetic petrol project public affairs manager; Warwickshire all-rounder Robin Dyer appointed Taranaki Cricket Association’s professional cricket coach.
❚ 25 Years Ago: Taranaki gets two women mayors, Claire Stewart (New Plymouth) and Mary Bourke (South Taranaki), in local body elections; Euan Means (15) captures Stratford Golf Club’s senior championship; TSB Bank slashes lowest mortgage rate to 8.4 per cent.