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Arts and culture in Ashburton District
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are many things to celebrate about being a part of the Ashburton District.
them is our people. Our community is well supported by numerous sports groups,
service clubs and community organisations. The volunteers and members all put
in a tremendous amount of work into organising events, sourcing funding,
creating opportunities, and helping those in need. It was therefore no surprise
that we had four local recipients named in the recent Queen’s Birthday Honours
Topp Twins, Lynda and Jools Topp, were named Companions of the New Zealand
Order of Merit for services to the entertainment industry. They have been an
integral part of Kiwi culture for more than 30 years and we’re very lucky to
have Dame Lynda Topp living in Staveley. From recording and releasing numerous
albums, sold out tours, television and comedy shows, and a record breaking
documentary, the Topp Twins are incredible ambassadors for our country.
John McGettigan received the Queen’s Service Medal for services to rural health.
Before his recent retirement he had worked as a GP in Methven for 40 years and
helped to establish the Methven Medical Centre. Over the years he accepted
sixth year trainee doctors from The University of Otago to gain an understanding
of rural medicine, and has helped train staff at Mt Hutt and assist in
Hall was named a member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to
conservation and fishing. Since 1991, he has been a member of the Central South
Island Fish and Game Council and was the inaugural chairman of the Canterbury
Water Management Strategy Ashburton Zone Committee. He is a life member of the
South Rangitata Reserve and last year he organised a salmon symposium which
attracted international speakers.
New Zealand Order of Merit was also awarded to Ian Begbie, for services to
aviation and motorsport. He has been a member of the Mid Canterbury Aero Club
since the 1980s and was president of the Ashburton Motorcycle Club from 1968 to
1993. He personally constructed 115 hangar door sections at the Ashburton
Airfield and has been involved with the Ashburton Aviation Museum since the
70s. Following the Kaikoura earthquakes, he helped to establish an air-link so
local pilots could fly emergency aid to Kaikoura.
a tremendous achievement to receive an honour. From services to the cheese
industry, bonsai and quilting, through to conservation, athletics and medical
technology, each person on the Honours List contributed significantly to their
respective sectors and is an integral part of our country’s social fabric.
Their commitment and dedication is highly valued and I would like to
congratulate them and say thank you for all they do.
would also like to acknowledge the New Zealand Indoor Bowls 69th National
Championships that have been underway in Ashburton at the EA Networks Centre since
9 June and will conclude on 16 June. More than 750 players from across New
Zealand have been competing and it is the first time the championship has been
hosted here. I was delighted to be invited to attend the opening and speak
about our district, especially as this is the first time the tournament has
been in Ashburton.
haven’t given bowls a go I would highly recommend it. It is a fantastic sport
for people of all ages and abilities. Our local bowls groups around the
district do an amazing job and should be congratulated for the effort that has
gone into hosting this tournament. In particular, Michael Lawson and his team
of helpers who worked incredibly hard to ensure the event has run smoothly.
As a community, each of us
is an ambassador for our district and it is up to us to roll out the welcome
mat to our visitors and showcase the best of our slice of the country. We
should be proud to call Ashburton our home and actively champion it on both the
national and international stage.