Fire-damaged pavilion to be repaired
Nearly 14 months after a fire damaged the Kerikeri Domain Pavilion, the Far North District Council has decided to rebuild it.
In a June report by the council’s infrastructure planning manager, it was recommended that the pavilion be demolished, however it was decided at the August council meeting that the building will be repaired.
Councillor Dave Hookway says this has been a popular decision and was pleased that Mayor John Carter stepped in to assist his calls for further information after a resolution was put to a May council meeting for the pavilion to be demolished.
‘‘It’s been frustrating to see this sitting here like this. Now let’s get on with it and get it done.’’
The pavilion consists of two squash courts, changing rooms and clubrooms and was used by a number of community groups before the June 2016 fire, which was lit by two teenage boys.
For this season, the rugby league club was granted use of the changing rooms with the rest of the pavilion unable to be used.
Hookway says he is keen to see work started on the repairs and notes that the community board will be considering further enhancements to the building without causing significant delay or significant costs.
Peter Poharama, who operated a drop-in youth centre at the pavilion every Friday night, says he is ‘‘stoked’’ the building will be reopened.
‘‘I’ve been seeing some of the kids I used to work with at the youth centre just walking around, and I’ve been frustrated that I haven’t been able to do anything with them. I’m stoked that it’s opening again, it gives the youth something else to do now. We are very happy.’’
Shortly after the fire the youth centre also known as ‘There’s a Better Way’ had a number of items stolen including a television, laptops, Xbox games and even their handmade arts and crafts.
The Kerikeri Squash Club has also been given the right to build two additional courts at the site, subject to funding, consent approvals and consultation. Insurers paid out $345,000 in partial settlement for the pavilion in January 2017.
A draft Reserve Management Plan for the Kerikeri Domain will be open for community consultation in November.
Councillor Dave Hookway is keen to see work started on the repair of the Kerikeri Domain Pavilion.
The derelict pavilion building.