Nelson City Councillor 1974 - 1977
My time spent in Nelson was very short. We moved from Auckland in July 1970 with a 20-month old daughter and an 11 -week old son who had major heart surgery. Having no family support and not knowing anyone I made use of the Nelson Day Nursery situated in Bridge Street west. I mentioned to one of the committee that I would like to do something for the nursery as I had had wonderful help. The result was I was instantly on the committee, a new experience for me. Six months later I was the President.
Around this time the Nelson City Council was considering developing two inner city carparks and our old nursery building was in the way. Negotiations with our executive committee by the Mayor, Town Clerk and Council solved the problem and we gained a new site for a peppercorn rental in Bridge Street east. By this time I knew a number of people and was approached to stand for the Council. A very new experience again going out and putting my ideas for a better Nelson to the public.
On the election night I was beaten by two votes, but again with encouragement I applied for a Magisterial recount, (the first time in local politics I believe). The result was I was elected by one vote.
I served on the Parks and Reserves Committee with Bill Matthews as Chairman. Fitting meetings and public duties round school and kindergarten plus the amount of paperwork was a challenge. During this time a Sister City was formed with Miyazu in Japan. A small park was established on Atawhai Drive and was opened by Nelson and Miyazu Mayors. The park has now been re-established in Founders Park, a very restful, peaceful place. A new city plan was also being discussed and many new ideas were put forward concerning washing lines, building on skyline and style of buildings.
1978 found us moving back to Auckland and the end of my civic duties which were very enjoyable and educational.
This was published in: Women Decision-Makers Nelson and Tasman 1944 -2018, p. 42. Compiled by Dr Shelley Richardson, Elaine Henry, Gail Collingwood, Hilary Mitchell.
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Further sources - Dianne Aubin
- Richardson, S., Henry, E., Collingwood, G. Mitchell, H. (2018). Women decision-makers Nelson and Tasman 1944-2018. Nelson, New Zealand