Cilla Henry is not happy her 70-year-old niece Bussy is having to tidy up the drains outside the family farm in Gordonton.
“She’s a good soul but she’s got a bad heart. The frustrating thing is that no-one ever comes to clean the drains so she’s doing it all herself. Again. It’s very frustrating.”
For the last few weeks Bussy has been weed-eating out front of her little cottage which belonged to their grandmother.
“It’s my own weed eater, my own petrol, my time. It’s never cleaned properly,” Bussy told Number 8 Network’s Annette Taylor.
In past years she has cut down trees that have obscured the driveway, and generally kept the drains clear. “They’re important for the stormwater, it has to flow well. You can see lots of pipes running across. And it’s right in the middle of our community.”
Cilla says Bussy is also busy around the village, tidying and painting and helping whereever possible.
“Only rarely does council come and mow the frontage. When they do it’s a rough job, without the catcher on. Elsewhere in the village they do a better job. But we live here.”
It’s hard to find out who’s responsible for the drain, they say. “The main problem is there are so many different contractors. They all pass the buck,” says Bussy.
Last year Cilla rang every council member to try to get action on the problem. “The only one who came out and talked to us was Dynes Fulton. And that’s it. I talked about this at a council meeting last year and still nothing has happened.
“I just get so angry to see her having to do this,” says Cilla.
Number 8 Network phoned Waikato District Council and received an assurance the matter will be investigated. More to follow soon.
Update: Waikato District Council staff alerted the NZ Transport Agency on Cilla Henry’s behalf. They said Gordonton Road is a state highway and maintenance along a state highway falls within the NZTA’s responsibility.