Volunteers needed for market, committee told

A number of issues were discussed at the Gordonton District Committee AGM recently, including the future of the country market and a need for volunteers.

Gordonton Country Market started in 2012 in Hukanui Park, run by a committee from the Oaks Christian Centre.  It has recently been in decline, organisers told the GDC.

Market opens
Cutting the ribbon

“This has been a direct result of fewer stall holders and less volunteers. They desperately need more volunteers if they want to have regular markets in the future. They have made a decision that they will only have a couple of markets a year,” GDC chairman Richard Riddell said in his report.

He told Number 8 Network at least 30 volunteers are needed each time if regular markets are to continue.
“The volunteers from Oaks are burnt out. Many have left the area and some have ill health. People at the meeting would like to see the market continue and hope that Oaks can rally up more volunteers from the community to help them out.”

There will definitely be a Christmas market, he said, but possibly none before then without additional volunteers.

Also discussed at the meeting were the old school buildings at Hukanui Park. Waikato District Council undertook a building safety at the end of last year, focussing mainly on fire safety.

“It found that some of the exits were blocked by over grown vegetation, exit signs had fallen down and some door handles needed to be replaced. The vegetation was removed and signs were put back.

“The building will have to be repiled and reroofed in the future if we wish to preserve and continue using the building for future generations,” he said in his report.

The best way forward was to work with Council. “Just recently we have been successful in getting a grant for $4000 which is to be used specifically to get a full engineer’s report on the building so we can get planning on the required future restoration work.”

The committee will also apply for funds from the Historic Places Trust.

He also commented on a previous meeting which involved members from the NZTA. “They were consulting us on the proposed safety improvements on SH 1B between Ballard Rd and Taylor Rd. However the 70k area in the village was left out.”

“Our community, with committee support, feels very strongly that there needs to be a safe crossing across SH 1B in front of College Drive. These safety improvements are part of an over-all plan to have a safe walking route from East West College to Gordonton School. The improvement would also include a footpath along College Drive and a safe footpath in front of the shops at the old dairy factory. To get this plan implemented NZTA and Waikato District Council will need to work together.”

The next project for the hall was to sand and oil the floors over the summer holidays.

He said there were three resignations at the meeting – Ray Kestle, Rod Wise and Jo Davies.
“Ray Kestle said it was time for the younger generation to take over.”

Richard Riddell told Number 8 Network all had been a valued part of the committee over the years and had a wealth of knowledge.

“I am sure they will still be available for any advice needed.”

He thanked everyone who helped out – “…to those who have come in to the hall to do minor repairs and small jobs from time to time… changing light bulbs, gardening and other maintenance jobs, and also to those who help get quotes for the bigger jobs.

“…Finally I would like to say a big thank you to Jo Davies for the commitment and support she has given to the Gordonton District Committee over the years in her position as secretary and treasurer. We will miss her in this role.”

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Number 8 Network - a community website for the rural areas northeast of Hamilton, NZ, is run by Gordonton journalist/editor Annette Taylor.

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