Wednesday 16th July dawned fine and clear, fixed wing aircraft and helicopters arriving from all directions at first light. By 9.30am there were over 50 stakeholders and supporters assembled at Martins Bay Lodge to welcome the Minister of Conservation Dr Nick Smith. When he finally arrived it was all boats down to the beach from where we had the official welcome (kia ora and thanks to Oraka Aparima runaka representative Stewart Bull), presentation of the partnership agreement by the children of Martins Bay, a few words from the Minister then finally the official signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Department of Conservation and the Hollyford Conservation Trust.
Then it was back to the lodge for lunch (warm thank you to Shaun Bilham and Bard Crawford for the delicious cuisine), introductions to all trustees and warm words from all including Southern Regions’ Conservation Services Manager Allan Munn and Director of Partnerships Kay Booth.
The day was a huge boon to all with such notable guests as Ed Cotter, harking back to the days of Davey Gunn, and Peter Johnson, ecologist with well over 30 years experience in the Hollyford. Thank you to all those who sent apologies, but thank you also to all those who made it to the bay for the day to support the project. It was day we will all remember.
If you missed all the wonderful media coverage please click on the following links:
Radio New Zealand
and the Otago Daily Times
And we’ll be posting photographs of the day very soon.
By the way. The Hollyford Conservation Trust has now received over $200,000 of funding from DoC to get well underway. Bravo to all. We’re off!