Our water problem 

Another summer and total water restriction in place again, this year earlier than ever. Living in the Wairarapa summer droughts and water shortages ever has it been and with climate change we can be sure that this ever will it be thus.  The initial reaction is to say it’s ‘The …

It’s in the Bag

This was the catchy title for a great idea: donating handbags filled with essential toiletries plus treats like perfume for the Women’s Refuge.  When the call went out the response was typical Martinborough.  More than 90 bags chocka with goodies were dropped off at the collection point at Kitcheners, to …

Know your town 

George Pain JP The city father of the town we now know as Martinborough.  The Pain family came to New Zealand on the ship Oriental arriving at Wellington in 1840, Mr Pain Snr, also George, was a bricklayer, George, their third son, was born in 1846. They lived at a …

An earlier Star deliverer 

We received an interesting letter from Val Johns’ brother in law Lloyd who lives in Australia. He wrote;  “In the 1950s I delivered Charlie Michelle’s Martinborough Star to around 40 or so residents each Wednesday after school for the princely sum of 2/6d.  ( 2020 = $8.72). On every Wednesday, …

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About Musical Education and Appreciation 

February 17, 2020 February 2020 No Comments

The UK Government has recently pledged a staggering £85m for music education in schools. School Standards Minister, Nick Gibbs, said “we want all children to be leaving school able to read and write music, and to have been introduced to a wide range of musical traditions. Today’s funding announcement is designed to help our schools deliver that ambition. Government-backed hubs will provide lessons to ensure that all pupils have access to musical education, instruments and opportunities to play”. This generous grant is partly in response to a perception that music education has become the preserve of the privileged as more schools discontinue offering it because of demands of other subjects and the cost of private music lessons. Daily Telegraph 16/01/20

There is a huge archive of music cartoons on the internet.  Someone who benefits from this proposed comprehensive UK music education programme would certainly get the joke in the accompanying cartoon.  They would not confuse the symbol for a sharp in music notation with the hashtag symbol (#metoo). They will also have an appreciation of music which will allow an awareness of one’s own musical culture.  … Continue Reading


December 9, 2019 December 2019 Comments Off on NATIONAL AWARD FOR BOUTIQUE VINEYARD

Every year, renowned New Zealand winewriter Michael Cooper brings out his Buyer’s Guide to New Zealand Wines and this year’s edition has a very special meaning for one boutique Martinborough vineyard.

On the same day that they were advised they had won two Gold Medals and a Silver Medal at the NZ International Wine Show for their red wines, Michael Finucane and Roz Walker of Alexander Vineyard received a very welcome ‘phone call from Michael Cooper.

They learned that they had been given the highly sought after award of producing New Zealand’s

Best Red Wine Buy of the Year for their Alexander Dusty Road Pinot Noir 2018. … Continue Reading

Country dog – City dog

December 9, 2019 December 2019 Comments Off on Country dog – City dog

Of Helicopters and Chamber Music

December 9, 2019 December 2019 Comments Off on Of Helicopters and Chamber Music

Odd bedfellows?  Hover in there, all will make sense (or nonsense) soon. In the meantime, it was pleasing for the Martinborough Music Festival team (MMF) to note that an appreciative audience member took the time to write a letter to the STAR (November 2019).  A newcomer to Martinborough, Paula Barnett wrote [I have] ‘had the good fortune to experience beautiful music in many venues around the world and was blown away by being able to get as equal an experience in what is now my home town’. 

Just as heart-warming was to bump into Ted Preston of the Jazz In Martinborough team and have him offer congratulations on the success of the MMF.  It is high praise to have another music event organiser in the same town be so generous with their comments – thank you Ted. The post Festival survey was positive as well; several responses expressed a view on preferred chamber music composers and ensemble groupings. … 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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