Home' Christchurch Mail : September 12th 2013 Contents 11
CHRISTCHURCH MAIL, SEPTEMBER 12, 2013
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Last post for
By GARY MOODY
IN RECESS: Avonside blogger Lawrence
Roberts is calling it a day.
AFTER 1,101 postings in cyberspace
since 2010, earthquake blogger Law-
rence Roberts is calling it a day.
The Avonside red-zoner has moved
to Kaiapoi, and his Avonside Blog is
now described as being in recess''--
just as the third anniversary of the
quake which gave Christchurch
residents a new familiarity with
terms such as liquefaction rolled
Mr Roberts said he spent 20 hours
a week putting together his online
presence to provide a central point
of information for our part of the
world'', specifically his earthquake-
He said in his last posting that, as
issues arose, it also became a voice
putting forth experiences and views
that would otherwise not have been
Fracking and earthquakes, red
zone reversals, earthquake prone
buildings and insurance issues are
part of the archive he will keep
online. He now feels Avonside people
have their own voice, after the
launch of a photography project Tkx
4 the Memories, which chronicled
some of the residents' experiences.
Their voices are clearer, more dir-
ect, and more passionate than any
intermediary can manage,'' he said.
Mr Roberts was part of a neigh-
bourhood group set up around his
home in Cowlishaw St after the qua-
kes. It was called Cowpats''-- an
amalgam of street names -- but he
ended up having twice as many
viewers of the blog as there were
members of the group he set it up
for.Mr Roberts house was originally
zoned orange and went red in 2012.
He said the blog had allowed him to
be dispassionate about his own
The long-term impact of the
quake, specifically on people from
the hard-hit area, also needed to be
monitored, he said.
I look forward to 2014 being the
year of reckoning and accountabil-
His last blog praised Cera, how-
ever. While often under heavy fire
from angry and distraught residents,
you have quietly done everything in
your power to solve our problems
and support red-zoners. One day, I
hope, when the smoke clears, the
value of your efforts will be better
understood and appreciated.''
While the computer is in sleep
mode now, it could power up again if
people needed help, he said.
Teen keeps his eyes on
the skies after course
By GARY MOODY
PROGRAMME PARTICIPANT: Shirley
Boys' High School student Matthew
Newbitt has his future career mapped
out after a stint in the skies.
Shirley Boys' High School student
Matthew Newbitt, 13, has his head
in the clouds after flying through a
Youthtown aviation course.
The non-profit organisation, set up
to inspire young New Zealanders to
reach their potential, introduced a
learn to fly programme as well as a
course to help youngsters get
through their learner's drivers
licence earlier this year.
The programmes have the inten-
tion to help 13 to 18-year-olds get the
opportunity to learn practical skills
to help them with future career
Matthew has spent three hours in
the air -- a start towards getting his
He will have to wait a few years to
be part of the driving course, but has
had his previous desire to become a
commercial pilot reinforced by the
hours he spent in the cockpit.
More than 20 students completed
the learn to fly programme and a
dozen students have been helped to
get their learners licence.
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