39 Millar Road
Friday 5th January 2008
4567 Highway 50
Dear Councillor Lester,
We would first of all like to congratulate you on your recent success in the Hastings District Council elections. During these elections, we noted your opposition to extensive development of Ocean Beach and would like to voice our full support for your stance. We also wish you all the best in your efforts to minimise any development and maintain the special wilderness character of our great beach.
When first the prospect of Ocean Beach being developed originally emerged, many in the Hawke’s Bay community were outraged and upset. This hurt was hardly helped by the suggestion of approximately 500, followed by 1000, houses. As the issue progressed, we decided that it was time to step up and galvanise the often-ignored youth into action. To do this we have started a Bebo page dedicated to the preservation of Ocean Beach.
As you may well be aware, Bebo is an online site where people may add members and share information about themselves. This provides the perfect medium for people to show their opposition to the development. And, while our website has only been up-and-running for a few months, its list of members who oppose development stands at well over 300. This, complete with the regular daily views and comments from these members, shows a real disappointment at the prospect of the beach losing its special character. To see this disappointment first hand, feel free to visit www.bebo.com/saveoceanbeach.
Now we acknowledge that, at this stage, there is only the potential for Council to make a submission to the commissioners. However, as the representatives of the Hastings District, we feel that it is imperative that you convey the public’s opposition to Andy Lowe’s private plan to the select committee. The first step to do justice to the public’s desire can be taken simply by listening to their calls for protection and ensuring that the Council’s submission to the independent committee makes clear the importance (in the minds of the public and, we hope, in the minds of the Council) of preventing extensive development of Ocean Beach. Keep in mind that the small (but ever-growing) 300 plus members on our site are just the tip of the iceberg. They represent only the portion of the 17-19 year-old age bracket who have bebo. Once you factor in the thousands of others outside this age group and those who don’t have Bebo, you realise there is significant support for the principles which you stand for.
Once again, we wish you all the best,
Harry Johnston Anna Johnston
Rose Heinrich Louis Chambers