Chairmans Report – October 2019

Chairmans Report

Focus Paihia Community Charitable Trust

16 October 2019

Another busy year gone in a flash again, some of the key highlights are as follows

Waitangi Mountain Bike Park

Hub is complete as we will see this evening with an amazing new pump track also. The bike hire and café are leased out to Paihia Mountain Bikes and WMBP Café respectively and the Trust is really happy to be partnering with such great local businesses.

I would like to acknowledge the major contributors to the new pump track, this would have been financially prohibitive had it not been for the following businesses donating time and equipment to allow such an incredible pump track to be available for all the kids…both young and old.

  • Andrew Younger Contracting – building the pump track and carting the material
  • Mahalo Transport – cartage of material
  • Broadspectrum Puketona Quarry – suppling all the material
  • Andy Grierson – signage and handrail install

Thank you very much for your truly amazing contribution.

Track building is continuing at the moment with the beginning of zone 4 and also a link from the top of Bailys road down through the bush as a spectacular entrance to the park and also to help get bikes of most of the road. Thanks to WNT for their support in getting this over the line.

In order of funding

  • Far North District Council 
  • Bay of Islands Community Board
  • Foundation North
  • Pelorous Trust
  • Northland Regional Council
  • The Paihia Community in cash, kind and via Focus Paihia
  • Lotteries
  • Provincial Growth Fund

As a community we are very lucky to have this world class asset on our doorstep and I would like to thank those who keep it running and in such great shape.

Tiff Holland and Taunaha Smith who manage the day to day running of the park.

Roger Dold and Chris Williams who put in countless volunteer hours behind the scenes as a subcommittee,

And of course the literally hundreds of volunteers that continually help to make this such a success.

It is with great pleasure that I can let you all know we have our first National event to be held at the park in early October 2020 – National Secondary School Champs

Free BBQ No.2

A second free to use BBQ is scheduled to be installed in the first part of next year.  This was a joint project with Lions and FP, led by Greg Jones, thanks Greg. It has been a huge success as I’m sure you have all noted when driving past, so much so we think an extra one is needed.

Further drinking stations

It is with great pleasure that I can let you know the four new drinking stations have been ordered and will be installed in the next couple of weeks along the waterfront, thanks to those who have volunteered to help dig in the pipes this weekend and to Brita Marti for keeping this project underway. It has been a long haul for sure. Great to have the end in sight.

Second annual arts, cultural and sports grant

This year for the second time Focus Paihia provided a contestable fund for different groups in the area, this was well received and the following groups received support from the Trust:

  • Paihia Sea Scouts – life jackets, tables and chairs
  • Special Olympics BOI – tablets
  • BOI Gymnastic Club – new resources
  • BOI Yacht Club – toward purchase of safety boat

The fund was well oversubscribed and it was tough for the Board to be able to make a decision but it was great to be able to help out these community groups.


As always thanks to all involved in sprucing up the town before summer gets underway, I would like to especially acknowledge Heinz Marti who leads this every year and ensured everything got a tidy up.

We had a great turnout and it is such an awesome way to get so much done in such a short space of time, but the best part I think is the fact that it is a great opportunity for locals to catch up and connect. We do live in a very special town.

Exercise Station

The exercise station that was discussed at the last AGM (and the one before that!) is still moving forward…. It looks like we are almost there, we are awaiting final sign off from the Community Board on Nov 4.  Watch this space – good news soon we hope.

Op Shop

The Op Shop is all moved into its new shop, we think it looks amazing and I would like to thank Patrick Crawshaw for an incredible design that has I’m sure made us the envy of many op shops in NZ.

The Op Shop remains the primary funder for Focus Paihia and without this entirely volunteer operated entity we would be very limited on what we can achieve.

Kath Williams, Sandy Cook-Jenson and Gill Secombe remain at the helm sharing the management of this ever growing business, thank you to them and all the community that give their time so freely, we would be lost without you all.

13 Nov 2019 we have the next Op Shop fashion show, such a fun night for all attending with tickets available from the end of the month…$20 incl a drink when you arrive and some nibbles, come along and support this great event at the BOI Yacht Club.

Even with the larger shop we still struggle for space and would like to take this opportunity to thank John Worrall for his continued support of a free storage facility at BOI Storage.

I would also like to thank Richard and Lana at Cellinis who provide our team with free coffee while they are working in the shop…thank you very much.

Jaques Jenson is another outstanding volunteer who gives tirelessly of his time not only during the reno of the shop but building whatever is required for the team at the Op Shop, thank you Jaques for such a great effort it is very much appreciated.


I’m sure you have all noticed the fantastic mural on the Bluff replacing the graffiti that has been there for years. Thanks to Shell Wilson for spearheading this project it was an amazing time watching the very talented artist Erika Pearce create that masterpiece, hundreds of people stopping by over the course of the week watching her work. I would like to acknowledge Richard from Kerikeri Colour Centre who has donated the paints for not only this project but also the revitalisation of the flag trail, thank you.

Shortly you will see lights being installed to light up the mural so it can be seen at night, a great final touch.

Thanks to Erika for an amazing effort it really is a show piece for town. In fact the Board were so impressed with the transformation we have commissioned two more murals that started today, Stella is going to discuss those a wee bit later…very exciting.

Flag trail

As mentioned we have the flags being rejuvenated thanks very much to Terri Dent for driving this project, it’s looking great.

Community Wheelchair

We were contacted by the I-Site to ask if we would donate a wheelchair for the use of visitors while they were in town, I am pleased to say it is in place and being used by those visiting our town, once again making Paihia a great place to live work and visit.

Town Custodians

The Town Custodian Program is underway again thanks to the investment of FNDC. Once again Vern and his crew are keeping our town in pristine shape on those very busy summer holiday and cruise ship days. This service is vital to our town and indeed the entire district ensuring we are showcased in the best possible light. Thank you to all involved but especially Vern and his private secretary Nola for all they do.  You guys make such an important difference.

New project for 2019 – Waterfront touch stone update

Work is complete on a stunning new project that will be unveiled on the waterfront, seaward side of the I-Site.  Tony Makiha (Mystix Studios), a local carver is donating his time and immense skills to this project.  The stone, from Waima-Tuhirangi in Hokianga, will commemorate events in Maori history in the 1800’s.  To be a symbol of peace.  Project driver, Tania McInnes.  This was delayed due to the wharf renovations we will advise the new install time via our newsletter.

I would like to acknowledge the other fantastic groups we have in the Bay of Islands that help make our town what it is, a wonderful place live work and visit.

  • Bay Bush Action
  • Business Paihia 
  • Haven of History
  • Lions
  • Rotary
  • Friends of Williams House

It is great to be able to work with these groups in such a collaborative manner.

A very special Community member

I would like to share with you all, the Paihia Community, the story about a very generous member of our community, he wishes to remain anonymous and we respect that but we feel you should all be aware of what is being done.

This person contacted the Trust treasurer Chris Williams and offered $10,000 to a project of our choice; he mentioned he would like to see it go to the kids in the area. The Board decided to donate the money to the Paihia School for the use of Shade Sails, what an amazing gesture. However it doesn’t stop there, as many are aware you can claim any donations to Charitable Trusts as a tax right off. This person claimed their tax rebate from IRD and promptly donated that to the Trust also. He then informed us that he is so pleased with what Paihia is doing for itself he is making an annual donation of $25,000.00, $6250 every quarter for the Trust to improve our town, the first donation was at the beginning of this month.

Please join me in publicly thanking him as he is amongst us tonight for his outstanding generosity.  

I would also like to acknowledge and thank the Trustees of Focus Paihia, 

  • Geoff Williams, founding member
  • Ngati Kawa Taituha, Maori Rep
  • Roger Dold, Business Rep
  • Marty Robinson – Historical rep
  • Chris Williams – Treasurer
  • Stella Schmid – Enviromental rep
  • Sarah Townsend – Co-ordinator

It is a very busy Trust these days and these people make their time available when ever requested, not just once a month at Board meetings but constantly throughout the month in order to keep the wheels of the Trust turning. Thank you one and all for all that you do.

As always I would like to save the final thanks but certainly not the least to everyone here and those who couldn’t attend, the people of Paihia. You are an outstanding bunch of people who give so tirelessly of your time and energy.

In recent months I have had the pleasure of attending and speaking at two of the “Our Kerikeri” meetings, this is a great bunch of people that have got together and are working within their community to create something similar to what Paihia has done. It has been awesome to look back during these discussions and take some time to reflect on where we all started and where we have got to, take a bow Paihia you have so much to be proud of…fair to say it is always with great pride that I am able to talk about the community spirit that we enjoy in this area.

Thank you one and all.

Grant Harnish


Focus Paihia

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