By the time you read this the garden fete at Jack and Jan Chisnall’s Amberley property will be well and truly over. We were lucky with the weather – it rained on the morning of 22 January, and then the weather gods must have decided to give us a break because the murk cleared and by the time proceedings were underway at 12.30 we were set to enjoy a pleasant afternoon.
The fete kicked off election year very well and I was rapt with the support the event received from locals, thankyou.
I was in the company of other MPs at the event. Aaron Gilmore, list MP for Christchurch East, Nicky Wagner, list MP for Christchurch Central, Nikki Kaye, MP for Auckland Central and Kate Wilkinson, Minister and list MP for Waimakariri also mingled with the guests and competed in an MP’s Master Chef contest.
This event proved quite entertaining – we had five minutes to make a hamburger and then plate pikelets with cream and raspberry jam. It’s amazing how difficult relatively simple tasks become when you suddenly have a time constraint and an audience to contend with!
I confess to being more “at home” putting on a small shearing demonstration alongside my son Nickolas before the spotlight moved from MPs to talented locals like Bev Forrester whose stylish woollen garments were modelled during the afternoon’s proceedings.
Thinking about wool – it is timely to digress for a few seconds and mention how good it is to hear of a change for the better within the wool industry. This improvement in returns is exciting and with new ways of looking at the industry starting to pay dividends, the future is looking much brighter.
Finally, I’d like to thank all the businesses who sponsored the fundraising auction and supplied the excellent food we enjoyed at the fete. The input of businesses and individuals was appreciated, as were the efforts of our Young Nats who worked hard as wait staff.
I contacted over 300 people in the build up to the fete and it was good to talk to so many people and hear their views on a wide range of issues and ideas.
Now the fundraising is in full swing and the first month of 2011 is ticked off the calendar, I’m looking forward to meeting as many people as I can within the communities of North Canterbury.
National is serious about remaining in Government, needing another term in order to progress its plans for the future. It takes time to make changes, more so when we’re still living in a world struggling with recession and being buffeted by international events.
As for me, I remain committed to the communities of this region, working to bring them the things they need to thrive.