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A longer term?

March 12, 2020 March 2020 No Comments

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 No Comments

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 No Comments

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 No Comments

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


Martinborough Junior Hockey – 2019 Results and Prizegiving

Our 1st XI team came so close to victory in their final of the A-grade competition against rivals, MIS Falcons.  Martinborough scored an early goal in the first half of the game and held their defence until MIS scored a late goal in the final 3 minutes to draw 1-1 …

Kahutara School Hockey Wrap-up

Kahutara School managed to enter a total of three teams in various Wairarapa Hockey Association junior grades played at Clareville Hockey Stadium this season, a mean feat for a school of our size.  The Kahutara Blue team played Tuesday nights in the 6 Aside quarter field grade. The team did …

Junior Rugby

Our 2019 JAB season has come to an end, we have had an another amazing season with some awesome results. 2019 saw MRFC have around 75 registered players each year our numbers continue to grow and we have some huge things in the pipeline for 2020. Congratulations to all players …

Regular Features


Plenty of issues Our current mayor seems to think the council had a hand in …

Did you know

‘YOU WILL NEVER reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog …

Cooking corner – Potato rendang

INGREDIENTS 8 small potatoes, coarsely chopped 1/4 cup vegetable oil 1 onion, finely chopped 185 …

Know your town – Soldiers’ Memorial Park

Originally the Square was called Martin Square and the North – South and East – …

 Community Garden News

“In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.” Margaret …

News from Wharekaka

The AGM was held on 19 September.  Attendees heard that Wharekaka is in good heart …

Under The Martinborough Stars

Take a look up tonight and you’ll see a sparkling silver band of stars dominating …

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