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A longer term?

March 12, 2020 March 2020 Comments Off on A longer term?

The report, from the Institute for Governance and Policy Studies, argues a four-year parliamentary term and possibly another 30 MPs would create a better country for future generations.

New Zealand has one of the shortest parliamentary terms in the world. Of 190 countries with parliaments, 103 have five-year terms, 74 have four-year terms, and just nine governments are in power for three years before an election is held.

The report‘s co-author, Jonathan Boston, said that a longer term would provide more time for a government to make substantial achievements.

“As it currently stands a new government can be formed and then in effect got to spend maybe the first year trying to work out what it’s going to do, the second year trying to do it and then the third year preparing for the next election. In dealing with very complex, difficult issues, that’s a very, very tight timeframe.” … Continue Reading

A novel idea

March 12, 2020 March 2020 Comments Off on A novel idea

Featherston Library has come up with the idea of taking a number of books from their fiction section and wrapping them in plain paper on which is printed the book’s first page. These are displayed for library customers to peruse and decide if one appeals as a likely story.

The advantage of this is that it opens up the opportunity of finding a great book by and author who the borrower had never heard of and would never have been considered.  A win all around, the reader’s author list is expanded and the author’s readership is widened.

A delve into the blindfold offerings introduced me to a very funny story by a young (it is her first book) Australian author. It is to be hoped that she follows up with more as there are few cleverly funny authors out there. See book review.

A petty matter: 

March 12, 2020 March 2020 Comments Off on A petty matter: 

News that the word ‘trivial’ had stumped students taking an NCEA history exam has prompted worldwide ridicule and much handwringing about the state of New Zealand education. But is that really the right reaction, asks high school teacher and author Bernard Beckett.

News that students were signing a petition in protest at the use of the word ‘trivial’ in their level three history exam provided happy fodder for the perpetually dissatisfied. 

You will be able to anticipate the responses for yourselves. That young people should struggle with such a simple word was a sure sign of the anaemic state of the modern vocabulary, an indictment of the modern education system and certain proof that teachers everywhere should never ever receive a pay rise of any description: smugness and questionable grammar snuggling up close, getting nostalgic for a world that never was.

And yet the incidence of an apparently innocuous word causing such consternation amongst exam candidates speaks to a number of interesting issues. The first is how quickly language changes, and how difficult it is to pick up these changes when they are intergenerational.  … Continue Reading

An earlier Star deliverer.

March 12, 2020 March 2020 Comments Off on An earlier Star deliverer.

The second chapter of Martinborough’s Lloyd Johns’ life as a fire fighter. –continued.

Back at Lower Hutt late I wrote my report and prepared, as promised to develop and conduct Officer Command training for the NZFS. The Service was preparing for nationalisation and in 1972 I received a call from the Chairman of the Fire Services Council that the training school in Island Bay was to become the NZ Fire Service College and a new posting – National Director of Training was to be announced the following week, I was ‘advised’ to apply for the position.

My rank was Chief Fire Officer (the youngest in the NZFS) I soon set about getting the show on the road; when I took over 80% of training courses were being cancelled through lack of applicants, and when I left 4 years later there was an average 45 nominations for each 9 residential places available. … Continue Reading


Thanks to our sponsors

The Martinborough Football Club held the P+K Marty Masters Se7ens on the 31 October, and it was a huge success. Thanks to all our amazingly generous sponsors; P+K Martinborough, Mitre10 Martinborough, Cool Change, The Claremont Hotel, Top10 Holiday Park Martinborough, Martinborough Vineyard,  Circus Cinema, Ata Rangi, HealthFit, Physio Spot, Dry …

Martinborough Golf Report

At the end of October we held the finals of the Club Championships in near perfect conditions.  In the Seniors Division Tony Russo took on Lance Phelps with Tony shooting a magnificent 63 in the morning round and continuing that form into the afternoon, finally winning on the 25th hole.  …

Martinborough Golf Report

Another very busy month at the Golf Club which began with the Mens 54/36 Hole Open.  The players had to endure some very windy conditions on the Saturday but fortunately the weather was a lot kinder on the Sunday.  Winners of the 54 Hole Division were:  Best Gross Owen Lloyd, …

Regular Features

From the mayor

Merry Christmas! We now have a new electorate MP, Keiran McAnulty and I look forward …

Cooking corner

Catering for a vegetarian this Christmas? Here’s the Vegan Society’s Nut Roast recipe Ingredients  1 …

Councillor comment

Here we are the last Star for the year and what a year it has …

Did you know

I’M DREAMING of a white Christmas. But if the white runs out I’ll drink the …

Recyling calendar

December Wednesday 2nd glass Wednesday 9th wheelie bin Wednesday 16th glass Saturday 26th wheelie bin …

Regional Council notes

Time to start thinking Older residents in our region may well remember the massive flooding …

News from First Church

May these be the gifts your Christmas brings – Peace, Gladness, Good Health   and …

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