Vacancies filled with enthusiasm on the Hanmer Springs Community Board
The alpine town in northern Hurunui is in full steam as we begin to close in on a very challenging 2020, and there will be great confidence around the Hanmer Springs Community Board with its two fresh faces.
Bobby Harpur brings new blood to the table, and Michael Malthus put his name forward again, seeing this year with its economic challenges as an opportunity to further share his ideas.
Their nominations fill two extraordinary vacancies, and were declared elected and unopposed.
Bobby Harpur is a farmer from Southland who moved to Hanmer seven years ago, upon returning from his seven-year stint in Northern Ireland where he played rugby and worked in Customer Relations Management. The move north was a suggestion from a friend, and Bobby admitted he had no idea what he was really diving into as he’d not really visited the town since he was a child.
“I started as a barman here on minimum wage at the age of 33, and now I’m a rate payer.”
He describes Hanmer Springs as “a stunning little village” which he thoroughly enjoys contributing to.
As the manager at Fire and Ice Café, and assistant General Manager of Hanmer Hospitality Ltd, Bobby has been very active in supoorting local sport, especially Hanmer Primary & Senior netball.
“I was approached by a member of the Community Board to join up. I felt that Hanmer is a town that has given us so much, and I’d jump on board to help keep Hanmer Springs a great place for now and the future.”
In his spare time, when he’s not at Fire and Ice Café, looking after the general hospitality scene in Hanmer Springs, supporting kids’ sport, or milking cows at Mouse Point a couple of mornings a week before work, Bobby likes to be out in the trails with his dog Charlie and his wife Ruth.
“We need to talk about the trails more, they’re as good if not better than Rotorua.”
With his wide range of skills and interests, Bobby is looking forward to getting even more involved in the place he’s proud to call home.
“I enjoy the whole of the Hurunui, and I still have a love for agriculture. I have as many pairs of gumboots as I do sports shoes.”
Michael Malthus is a familiar face around the business world of Hanmer Springs, as well as the Community Board, which he has been a member of in years gone by. He is also a former councillor of nine years on the Hurunui District Council, where he was Deputy Mayor for six years.
With the task of setting the Long Term Plan approaching, and as COVID-19 recovery happens, he wanted to be around the Board table once again.
“It’s important to get everyone on board so there is good communication between all businesses so we can all work together to progress.”
Born in Hawarden, and now a Hanmer Springs resident for 28 years, Michael thoroughly enjoys living in the area, and thanks the wider community for its continued support of Hanmer Springs since lockdown.
“It’s been really busy this year, and we’re very grateful to everyone for supporting the town.”
Chair of the Local Business Association, a member of the Track Network Group, the Hanmer Tourism Group and serving on the Vestry as Treasurer at the Church of the Epiphany, life in Hanmer is busy but good for Michael and his wife Jane.
“It’s been seen as a relaxing place for many decades, with a great combination of recreation and recharging.”
PHOTO: Newly appointed Hanmer Springs Community Board member Bobby Harpur.