Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Election 2017

Election season has swung into gear with the next General Election on Saturday, September 23rd - 7 1/2 weeks away. Not much has changed with the way most Otautau people have voted over the last few years. The National Party garners most of the votes as it does in the rest of Clutha-Southland except Kaitangata. But National seems to be in a declining trend over the last decade. The other parties are showing interesting trends too.

This graph compares party votes over the last five elections as determined by Otautau voters. The Labour Party has been in serious decline for fifteen years, but with Jacinda Ardern as their new leader, that decline may stop this year. NZ First has had a roller coaster ride and was on the rise in 2014 - will they break the glass ceiling and get more votes than Labour? The Green Party have never been popular in Otautau and seem to be in strife with co-leader just resigning. The Conservative Party did well in 2014, but the founding leader resigned amidst lawsuits that are ongoing. United Future, like Labour, has been in decline among Otautau voters.

A coloured bar graph showing party results over the last five elections since 2002 by Otautau voters.

This information came from electionresults.org.nz. Parties that got less than 1% of the vote were not included in the graph.

Whatever your political leanings are, make sure you are enrolled and able to vote. Go to Enrol, Check or Update at the Elections.org website. Voting is a positive way to make a difference in the world, but if you're not enrolled, you can't vote.

Something else to know -- NZ voters are shrinking - not literally, but their numbers are. Thirty years ago, voter participation was above 90%. There was a lot happening politically so it sparked people's interest. In 2014, about 78% of eligible voters voted. With so many issues facing New Zealand - educational, economic, social, cultural and environmental - it doesn't make sense not to vote. This data is from the Statistics New Zealand Voter Turnout page.

A bar graph showing the decline of voter turnout for all New Zealand from 1981 to 2014.

So make a difference, get enrolled and get ready to vote!

Sunday, 9 August 2015

Otautau on Facebook

If you are looking for what's happening in Otautau ...go to our Otautau, New Zealand Facebook page. You don't have to be on Facebook to see all the photos and read the comments.

If you'd like to contribute to this blog or the Facebook page with your own Otautau news, leave a comment and we will get back to you. Thanks!

Thursday, 9 July 2015

Big Snow!

This photo set was graciously contributed by Quint Baker. He and his daughter were out with the sleigh on the day of the big snow - 7 July. Aren't these just lovely? Enjoy!
















Saturday, 25 April 2015

Anzac Day Service 2015

A few photos from today's Anzac Service.

Allen Brown at podium leading the ceremony.
Otautau RSA Chairman, Brian Drummond, to his left.
Bill Anderson seated. Junior Brass Band on left.
Captain McKernan
Father Vaughn Leslie singing with brass band.


St Andrews Scout group.
Students of Otautau School, Brownies/Guides and Scouts
People lined the bridge. A good crowd this year.
Four students read the Roll of Honour in turns.
Dr Pauline Stewart
Catherine Beck laying wreath.
Members of the Waimatuku Pipe Band
Otautau School students laying poppies.



Betty & Jim Flett and granddaughter?
A cross for each of the 53 Otautau & Districts men who died in WWI.

Saturday, 28 February 2015

Call for WWI Photos

The Otautau RSA and Otautau Museum are collaborating on a project for the war memorial to commemorate the landing at Gallipoli on 25 April. They are looking for information and photographs for the following WWI men listed on the memorial. They're also collecting photos and information on returned WWI men. If you can help with photos and info, please email the Otautau Museum. Thanks.

Leonard Allen (27426) - an Australian who was living and working in Wairio when he enlisted for the war. He was killed in action 7 Jun 1917.

Joseph Beck Ayton (61169) - lived and worked in Aparima.

James Robert Ewen Beck (49323) - horse trainer in Winton; discharged with diabetes; died at Wairio.

William George Napier Brown (22226)

William James Butler (18958) - worked in Merrivale; killed in action 14 Jun 1917.

William Clark - no information on him.

Albert Ernest Dove (9/693) - an Australian who was working in Orawia when he enlisted; died of wounds in 1918, France.

Peter Ellis (41078) - from Wairio; killed in action at Passchendaele.

Albert Walter Findlater (47016) - blacksmith in Otautau; killed in action 1918.

Michael Henry Ford (9/816) - from Heddon Bush; discharged from war and died at Heddon Bush.

Robert Emmet Ford (18983) - blacksmith at Orawia; killed at Messines.

Sydney Ford (8/3900) - Otautau farmer; killed at the Somme.

Oliver Daly Gavigan (48193) - Otautau farmer; died of wounds, 1918.

William Healey (11279) - labourer at Woodlaw; died of TB, 1918.

Peter Thomas Johnston (24/199) - from Avondale; killed at Passchendaele.

Francis Andrew Laidlaw (8/3938) - from Isla Bank; killed at the Somme, 1916.

James Duncan Laing (32862) - from Dipton; killed in action, 1918.

Arthur David Lindsay (45102) - Strathmore, Otautau, farmer; died of influenza, Invercargill, 1918.

Joseph McAfee (42688) - from Otautau; died, 1918.

Douglas Victor McCaw (71042) - farm cadet, Otautau; died of disease, 1918.

Daniel McKenzie (8/1786) - from Scotland and worked in Otautau; killed in action, 1916.

John Morris (45538) - Australian working at Scotts Gap; died of wounds, 1917.

Donald Muir (8/1808) - Scot working at Linton Park, Otautau; died of wounds, 1917.

Patrick O'Shaughnessy (36882) - from Ireland, worked in Otautau; killed in action, 1917.

Ernest John Pay (8/3996) - Ryal Bush cheesemaker; killed in action at the Somme.

Walter James Powell (18939) - from Scotts Gap; died of wounds, 1917.

Arthur John Scott - no information.

Eugene Tangney (8/492) - worked at Pukewao; died of pneumonia, Egypt, 1915.

Edward Richard Thomas (9/350) - Otautau contractor; killed at Gallipoli, 1915.

Andrew Hannah Ward (33046) - from Thornbury; killed at Passchendaele, 1917.

If you have a photo of one of these men, please email the museum. Thanks!

Monday, 23 February 2015

Feb 28th Events

Otautau is the place to be this Saturday, the 28th of February. There is the Classic Car show at Holt Park, the Three Churches Flower and Quilt Walk and, in the evening, the Classic Car Cabaret. Rock 'n Roll is the dress theme for the cabaret which will include an Elvis dance party, fundraiser auctions, prizes, photo booth, and milk bar. Come and dance or watch the fun, tickets $35 at Otautau Four Square, or ring Marg 027 331 5290.

If you would like to enter the Three Churches show, click on this link for the programme and competition schedule (pdf). Everyone is welcome, and it's all about having a go! You can enter flowers, vegetables, baking, hobbies and photography. Entries are to be in between 2pm and 6pm on Friday, 27 February at the Otautau New Life Church, corner of Queen and Chester Streets - entrance off Queen Street.

These are fundraising events that will benefit local groups like the school, pool, arboretum and the museum so please support them and have a great day.

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Symons Contracting's 50th

Last Friday, Doug & Mary Symons and family celebrated Symons Contracting's 50th anniversary. Friends and associates joined in to mark the milestone at the workshop which was the perfect venue for the evening. Decorations were provided by the Western Southland Floral Art Club. Here are a few photos from the festivities.

New diggers ready for duty.


Doug & Mary Symons
Mary and Doug and the grandkids.


It's great that a local family has remained in business for so long. Here's to the next 50 years.

Election 2017

Election season has swung into gear with the next General Election on Saturday, September 23rd - 7 1/2 weeks away. Not much has changed with...