Thursday, December 15, 2011

James Hargest school Zone

Here is a link to an article in The Eye yesterday, drawing attention to the fact that Glengarry is excluded from the JHC school zone.

I am interested on feedback on this issue, many people I have spoken to are very surprised at the exclusion. During our community consultation this issue was identified as our fourth highest priority. It seems clear that this is discrimination and it reinforces the negative stigma that Glengarry has in the wider community.

Last week I was speaking with one of the BCL contractors who is currently working in the Glengarry area. She said to me that she was surprised at how nice the area was and how safe their gear was, she had always thought Glengarry was a bit of a rough area but now doesn't know why people think that, it's a great community.

This is just one example of the stigma that Glengarry has to deal with. It's reinforced by a number of things and the James Hargest School zne exclusion is one of them. If people want to see for themselves what a great community we have they should come along to our Community Market. The last one for the year is on tomorrow, Sat 17th Dec 9.30-12.30 in the Yarrow St car park of the shopping centre or Eastside Baptist if it's wet.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Community feedback

Hi Everyone
We have been gathering feedback from people about the proposed Yarrow St car park and general thoughts about the Glengarry area.

Below is a link to the Glengarry Action Group facebook page!/groups/188113074607799/ I have posted the concept plans for the car park on here (scroll down to Dec 8 to see them).

The feedback we gathered is from the Market on Sat 3 Dec and the Community BBQ on Sat 10 Dec. Eastern Suburbs Tavern kindly supplied the sausages for the BBQ & ArchDraught the BBQ, bread and sauce etc. Thanks for your support. Thanks also to those who helped with buttering bread and gathering feedback - Peter, Chris and Richard. We had a lovely day for the BBQ and were able to give out sausages to all the people and kids playing in the playground and people wandering by. It was great to see lots of people bring a picnic or fish n chips over to sit with us and to engage with some new people about Glengarry. The feedback from both events is below.

We are keen for more feedback so if you could email me or post on the Facebook page that would be great.

Also we are having a fundraising art activity for kids in the Art Space on Wed 21 and Thurs 22 Dec 10am-11.30am. Kids will have the opportunity to make Christmas decorations with Caroline Holmes. The cost is $10 for both sessions and discounted for second and third children. Please pass this information on. All proceeds will go towards the Glengarry Community Art Project.

And the last Community Market for 2011 will be this Saturday 17 Dec 9,30-12.30. The market is really evolving into a great event. People comment about the great atmosphere, great range of things available to buy and great people. Thanks to those of you have supported the market this year.

Finally we would like to wish you all a Merry Christmas and hope you all have a great start to 2012. And thank you for all your input this year - it is appreciated and will go a long way to supporting the improvements we have planned for the area.

We will be back in the new year doing more things to raise the profile of Glengarry and to build on the community spirit of the area. We welcome suggestions, thoughts and ideas so please do get in touch. Please also pass this information on to others who may be interested.
Merry Chirstmas!

Here is the feedback we gathered at the Market on Sat 3 Dec about Glengarry:
Market is choice! Keep it going here. I love Glengarry community spirit.
More shops in the area to be opened up.
A better playground for the kids, skateboard park too.
Bring back the old style of shopping - like the books hsop. Find a unique niche.
Community area, kids creative, movement, culture.
Open another supermarket
The Glengarry market is a really good one, friendly people, good spirit, People who organise it have the right sense.
Great. Lovely market, reasonable boot fee, nice friendly vendors.
Congrats for your efforts on what I'd call a lost cause.
Cash in on Glengarry's proximity to the entrace of the city.
Contact landlords & suggest that empty and abandoned shops are unacceptable.
A skate park area fo rthe kids.
Make it more welcoming. Love the tree and lan ideas. Family orientated.
More green spaces to encourage people to sit.
Very nice. Keep going. Good luck.
Have all the shops open and have a community centre.
Outdoor plays, story telling classes for children.
More community activities.
A great improvement!
Food market like the one at SBHS.
The market is really good & I will come again.
Market is a great idea and very well organised.
Have lived here for 48 years, wouldn't change a thing about Glnegarry, Love the area and love the people.
I like coming here every day.
Good luck for the future.
Pot holes in the car park. Good - the poeple, so colourful and beautiful. Market!
Love the plan. Good to see great seating areas, grass and love the colour scheme. Very inviting & looks alive.
Its nice to see this going - market.
Need more of the shops filled. Trees and planting to make the place more colourful. Maybe paint to brighten up the shopping centre and surrounds.
I don't have any ideas but Glnegarry is not as bad as people make out, I would live here.
I like the people and nice community feel of Glengarry.
Peoplpe orientated community. Totally fabulous initiative.
Expand the already growning market days til it becomes HUGE!!
He wahi pai mo te whakatipu tamariki e pai ana te whakatu tenei tu momo mahii he hapai te hapori. (Would appreciate a translation if anyone can help with this).

Some thoughts from the Community BBQ on Sat 10 Dec:
Loved the colour in the car park plan - 2
Want a supremarket back in the area - 17
Like the trees in the car park plan - 3
Would like a coffee shop, bakery, place to buy home baking - 8
Speed bumps - 9
Lighting for the car park
Shade for the playground
Water fountain in the playground
Climbing frame in the playground.
Everything that is on the list of things that could be done.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

First impression plans & Community BBQ

Here is a link to the Glengarry Action group Facebook page where we have just uploaded some concept plans for the Yarrow St car park of the Glengarry Shopping Centre. This will enhance the first impression of the area greatly and help encourage people to come to the shopping centre and make it a more inviting place to visit.
Please add your thoughts and comments.
And don't forget to come along to our Community BBQ on Sat 10th Dec, 11.30-1.30pm in the playground of the shopping centre. Sausages kindly supplied by Eastern Suburbs Tavern, you just need to bring a picnic and your family.
Hope to see you there.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Glengarry update

Hi Glengarry Supporters! This email contains more updates about Glengarry actions and activities you could get involved in. It includes: 1. An update on the presentation to Council on 22 Nov 2. Information on how to submit to council on the 30 year plan 3. Request for help delivering the latest Good News Glengarry Newsletter 4. Community BBQ to be held on Sat 10 Dec 5. Community Arts Project update

1. Update on presentation to Council On Tues 22 Nov I presented a ten minute talk to the ICC about what has been happening in Glengarry. The city councillors were glad to hear about our plans and the consultation we have been doing. They were impressed with the leadership we have shown and look forward to hearing more from us in the future once our plans have been finalised. There was also an article in the paper on Thurs 24 Nov about the presentation.

2. Submitting to council You may have heard about the Council's 30 year plan for Invercargill - they have made a 25 min dvd all about it. In this dvd they talk about urban revitalisation of areas such as Glengarry. The council is keen for people to make submissions about this 30 year plan and I would like to encourage you all to submit about revitalising Glengarry being an important priority. The following link takes you to a page where you can watch the 25 min plan online and the following email address should be used to make submissions about the plan Submissions will be accepted I believe until the end of December.

3. Good News Glengarry The latest newsletter has been printed and we are looking for any helpers to deliver it to homes in the Glengarry area. Please text me or email to arrange to get some newsletters. My cell number is 027 2252 664.

4. Community BBQ 10 Dec 2011 On Sat 10 Dec 11.30-1.30pm we will be holding a Community BBQ and Picnic in the playground at the shopping centre. Eastern Suburbs Tavern is kindly supporting this event by providing sausages. Thanks Barry. Please come along, bring a picnic lunch and talk to us about your thoughts about Glengarry. We will have copies of the first impression plans available to look at and comment on, information about the Lithgow St community garden and other church activities and the new art space next to the laundry will be open to hear more about the Glengarry Community Arts Project. We look forward to seeing you all there to talk about the future of Glengarry. If wet we will have the BBQ at Eastside Baptist Church.

5. Glengarry Community Arts Project The space next to the laundry has been cleared out and is ready to be used as an art space - Thanks to Peter for making this space available for this exciting project and big thanks to Caroline for getting this up and going and thanks also to Chris and the folk from last Wednesday's Soup n Toast for helping with the clear out. Caroline is after some materials to help get started with the art and also lots of people to get involved in creating art! If you enjoy art then this is your chance to make a difference and be part of something fun. The things Caroline is looking for includes egg cartons, glossy magazines, acrylic paint, cardboard, offcuts of plywood, newspapers and chicken wire. Do get in touch if you can help with this in anyway.

There are some other things happening in the area too including the Eastside Baptist Community Garden, Soup n Toast at Eastside on Wednesdays, the bus shelter mural which is being worked on with Aurora College students and the Community Market & Car Boot Sale which will be held on Sat 3 Dec and Sat 17 Dec 9.30-12.30pm.

As always please let me know if you no longer wish to receive these emails. Please pass these emails on to others who might be interested in what's happening in Glengarry and encourage others to get informed and involved. If you would like to see something happening in Glengarry get in touch and we will do all we can to support and help make things happen. If you have any skills you could use to help us with the things we are doing please also get in touch. Cheers Becs

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Community consultaion

Below is the email sent out to our Glengarry community following community consultation on Sat 29 Oct at the Community Market. Get in touch if you would like to be involved in any of the projects underway.

Hi Everyone Welcome to those of you who have just joined our email list. This email has a bit in it including some exciting developments so please have a good look.

We are happy for you to pass this information on to anyone who might be interested in being informed about what's happening. If people would like to join this email list they can contact me on - also if you would like to be removed from the mailing list.

We have had some great media coverage this week following our consultation at the Market on Saturday including an article in the Times on Monday and articles in The Eye and Southland Express today (Thursday).

So this email includes: 1. the results of our consultation with the community at the Market on Sat 29 Oct; 2. updates on some developments around the first impression concept; 3. update on the meetings & discussions we have had with council 4. details about the mural to go up on the Yarrow St bus shelter; 5. community garden update 6. development of a temporary art space in the shopping centre 7. a draft vision for what the group is trying to achieve

Community market consultaion On Sat 29 Oct 2911 at the Glengarry Community Market & Car Boot Sale we had a display of information we had gathered from our previous meetings about what we wanted Glengarry to look like, feel like and be like in two years time. Throughout the morning we asked people to take three stickers and identify the things that they thought should be priorities..

We had a great response from the public and surveyed about 100 people to get the results below. We had publicised this with an article in the Express as well as delivering 1000 flyers to homes in the Glengarry area.

I have listed the suggestions in order with the number of stickers next to it.

Destination shopping centre, more shops, new business (all 3 listed separately but all mean the same thing I think) 44

First impression concept 30

Fruit trees and more trees 27

Build up the market & Try to do something ab the Hargest school zone 16

Murals, sculptures and art in the area 15

Skate ramp 13

Speed bumps along some of the roads 12

More fun events for families 8

community page in the paper, decent grocery shop, tidy St competition, better signage about what's in the shopping centre, more rubbish bins, business loyalty card - 7

build a relationship with schools, kindly and sports groups & identify skills in the community 6

welcome pack for new residents 5

more tourist things, more neighbourhood support groups, promote the pub as a community gathering place, 4

These results seem to reinforce the outcomes from our previous two meetings which make filling up the shopping centre and improving the first impression of the area as the priorities.

First impression The team working on this has meet again this week with a landscape architect and will hopefully finalise some of the ideas and suggestions that have been put forward. There was great support for the idea of improving the first impression of the shopping centre from our consultation.

Council Last week we viisted council to talk with Neil Boniface about our first impression plans and other ideas for Glengarry. He was enthusiastic about our ideas which is great. We have been invited to present the plans to the council on 6 March 2012. We also had Tim Shadbolt along to the Market on Saturday and he saw the consultation work we were doing. He has asked us to come along to the next full council meeting on 22 Nov to introduce what we are doing and give the council a taste of what we will present in March.

Bus shelter mural: We visited council last week and have been alloctaed some funds to redo the mural on the Yarrow St bus shelter. Initially we approached Ascot School to see if they would be inetrested in working on this but after somediscussion with them have decided to now approach Aurora College as older students may benefit more from thiis project. Stay tuned for further details and let us know if you would like to help out with any of this - the bus shelter will need water blasted & prepared for painting and we will need helpers to get the mural done also.

Community garden: Eastside Baptist Church has started planting at their new community garden in Lithgow St - this is a great use for an empty section and it is also a great opportunity for people from the community to learn about gardening. If anyone is interested in participating in this or helping out please contact Chris at Eastside Baptist Church.

Temporary art space: Peter at the laundry has some vacant space while he waits to get his redevlopement done. In the mean time he has agreed to make this space available to artists who might wish to do their work in a different enviroment. This will help build up the vibrance in the shopping centre and provide something interesting for people to look at while they visit the shopping centre. Thanks Peter. Please get in touch with me if you are interested in this.

Draft vision: From the consultaion we have been doing I have put together the following draft vision for what we are undertaking. I am interested in feedback and suggestions about this.

The Glengarry community has a heart. Our vision is to support the people, businesses and wider community to: 1. build on the pride that people have 2. promote and highlight the vibrant and positive community that exists 3. encourage development and make it sustainable in the long term 4. meet the needs of the diverse range of people that live and work in the area.

We will do this by: 1. seeking opportunities for growth and development 2. encouraging the community to work together 3. doing things that build up pride 4. involving the people - from all walks of life 5.. seeking opportunities to build resilience 6. preserving and enhancing the dynamics and features that make Glengarry special.

What will this look like??? Green, people talking to each other and helping each other, lots of shops -uniqe, art and artists, tidy, community focused, fun, ecclectic ........ This is where we need vivid images of what we want to see...

Glengarry has a heart that beats loud and proud.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Glengarry - First Impression

A team of passionate Glengarry folk have been working on some ideas to redevelop the first view of the Glengarry area when you come down Yarrow Street. Below is the first draft of a redesign for the car park area to make it look nicer - it includes new plantings, doing up the bus shelter, putting in more rubbish bins and creating some green areas. Ideally we would love to get businesses into the empty shops as well, and are confident that will happen in time.

We are also looking at including art in the area such as murals on the buildings, painted lamp posts and sculptures.

We are gathering feedback and ideas from the community, including business owners and residents so if you would like to get involved please do. You could post to this blog or our Facebook page (Ree's Gifts & The Book Stop), call into Ree's Gifts & The Book Stop or come along to the next Glengarry Community Market & Car Boot Sale on Sat 29 Oct where we will be kicking off some fundraising with a sausage sizzle.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Glengarry - Market, School zones & other interesting stuff

The Glengarry Community Market & Car Boot Sale is on again this Saturday 24th Sept - another great lot of stallholders including candles, mussel patties, secondhand goods, crads, plants, sausage sizzle and if you are really lucky BBQed Bananas with cream and marshmallows - YUMMY!!!

Following the session with Peter Kenyon on Wed 7 Sept the First Impression group has been busy working on a revised plan for the Yarrow St car park area - if anyone is interested in being part of this great team please get in touch.

One issue that a has been raised in the course of the community discussions is the exclusion of the Glengarry area from the James Hargest school zone. This means high school aged kids cannot go to James Hargest which is only a few blocks away and instead have to travel across town to Aurora for co-ed education. This has also been raised recently in the media as children from other parts of the city - eg Wallacetown - also cannot attend Hargest. I think this is an issue that should be highlighted more because in the case of the Glengarry community, this exclusion only helps to reinforce the false bad image of the area. I am interested in gathering information about Glengarry people's experiences with high school education so please get in touch or call into The Book Stop for a chat.

Finally we have a big list of great ideas for Glengarry on the wall at Ree's Gifts & The Book Stop, come in and check them out, see if there's anything that takes your fancy and get involved :-) And of course while you are there check out the great coffee, the fantastic gifts, Himalayan salt lamps and the finest books in town including competitively priced new NZ books!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Community Market

Today we had market number 7!

It was a great morning with a ton of stallholders including some folks who have been regular stallholders since the start of our market and new people who just came along today. The great thing about our market is the variety - we have everything from home made arts and crafts to secondhand goods, sausage sizzle (thanks ATC who used it to raise money today) and other home made baking (all fully compliant with ICC).

This all helps create a cool atmosphere and we are pretty proud of how the Glengarry Community Market & Car Boot Sale is developing. If you haven't already checked out our market I would encourage you to come next month (Sat 24 Sept). As we get closer to summer we will have even more on offer including a community stall to sell excess produce from the garden and a car wash.To give you an idea of what we have at the market we have plants including vege, knitting, cheeserolls, salt lamps, insence, hand made clothes, fingerless gloves, wooden chopping boards, candles, artwork, Donut Dude and so much more.

We want to support the community too so if you belong to a group that needs an option for fundraising perhaps our market could be the place where you could have a group jumble sale, do a sausage sizzle or car wash, busk or sell raffle tickets. And this means that people who come along to the Market and buy stuff are helping the community too.

The Market is held on the last Saturday of each month in the Yarrow St car park of the Glengarry shopping centre or Eastside Baptist if it's wet. The Market is on from 9.30-1pm. Next month we will have mussel patties for sale -yum! So consider coming along for lunch.

Finally I have challenged myself to do my Christmas shopping from the Market this year - so far I have bought a wooden truck for a nephew, cleaning clothes done up like cupcakes for the grandparents and a beautiful wooden chopping board for my parents.

Glengarry is a great community - perhaps next month you might like to see that for yourself :-)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Glengarry Newsletter

We started the Good News Glengarry newsletter in order to highlight the positive things happening in the community and to promote the businesses in the area too. The latest newsletter - number four first this year - is hot off the press. I am really stoked with the support we have received for the newsletter - this issue has some new and old advertisers in it. It also has some infomartion about the recent community meeting and upcoming market.

The newsletters are delivered around Glengarry but also in some other areas. They are also available from some of the shops in the shopping centre like the Chemist, the fish n chip shop and of course Ree's Gifts & The Book Stop. So if you don't get a copy in your mailbox call in to collect one.

Optimism generate hope.... hope releases dreams..... dreams set goals.... enthusiasm follows. Martin Seligmon.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Making it Happen

Sometimes I find people spend a lot of time complaining about the way things are. Blogs seem to be a popular avenue for this type of complaint. I can't help but think that if we spent more time trying to make things change for the better and less time complaining things might be a little different.

Some of us down in the Glengarry community have been trying to do just that - make things happen that is. Over the last few months we have had some positive things happening in Glengarry - things that have been neglected for some time. For example the council's road sweeper now does all the streets in the shopping centre and the council has cleared all the rubbish from the service area for the shops. It's made a big difference to the appearance of the area.

Don't get me wrong there are more things we would like to see done, especially getting a rubbish bin next to the new public toilet and getting the bus shelter tidied up. We are confident that one of these days the Glengarry shopping centre will be just as full as it used to be, it's already starting to happen.......

Glengarry is a great place to I've and work :-)

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Glengarry Community Update

On Wed 27 July some folks from the Glengarry community got together to talk about the good things happening in the community and to discuss what could be done to raise the profile of the community and make it an even better place to live and work.

We had a great facilitator for this (thanks Diana Z) and everyone participated in a positive way.

People identified heaps of great things about Glengarry including a huge range of services provided in the shopping centre and wider area such as atm, best fiah n chips in town, great chemist, garage, doctor, the only laundry in town adn Habitat's Restore to name just a few. The area also a good bus service, new public toilet and a great monthly market.

People also identified the Glengarry community spirit as one of the great things about the area - for example it has a village atmosphere, people are very loyal to the area, there are very supportive churches, some great events happening and so on.

And the other great thing identified in the area were the people - people who are keen to get stuck in and help people, people who are prepared to get involved in the community, a diverse people and people who are willing to help each other.

We also talked about things to do to make the area even better. The main ideas from this were to promote the positive things in the area to change the negative stigma, improve the south side car park area to make a better first impression, provide a map to show people what is available in the area and to make a welcome pack to for people who come to the area.

We are planning another community meeting and would love to have lots more people along. So if you are keen please get in touch. Add your comments to this page or email

You can also check out our Facebook page for a full copy of the notes from the meeting or email

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Ree's Gifts & The Book Stop

Hi All
I thought it was about time we started blogging for the shop and the things we are doing. The shop has undergone some renovations over the last couple of weeks and re opens tomorrow bigger and better. We stock the best priced salt lamps in town and have a range of new NZ books which are price competitive with online stores.

We are located in the Glengarry Shopping Centre and are open 10.30-3pm Mon to Fri and 11-2pm on Sat.

We run two writing groups from the shop - Creative Writers for poets and Southern Scribes for short story writers and novelists. Contact us if you are interested in coming along.

We also run a monthly market on the last Sat of each month in the Glengarry Shopping Centre car park on Yarrow St. We have a range of stalls including secondhand goods, arts and crafts, sausage sizzle and much more. We are always looking for more stallholders so contact us if you are interested. We are also registered for food selling.