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ANZ North Auckland Business Banking—21 October 2020

October 22, 2020

Today another group of professionals from the ANZ North Auckland Business Banking team spent a day at CUE Haven helping out with a variety of track maintenance projects.

The group arrived bright and early and included Ada, Anita, Crystal, Daniel, Ella, Guixia, Jacinta, Jim, Joe, Keith, Kelly, Kim, Kylie, Shrenik, Tina, Tony and Vicki. Almost everyone in the group had volunteered at CUE Haven previously and it was great to see old friends and meet new ones.

Also joining us for the day was our good friend and neighbour Alan.

We got acquainted over morning tea and Mahrukh updated the team on the current developments and future plans.

Thomas then described the plan for the day and gave a safety briefing.

The work for the day included continuing to work on various track sections near the viewing platform and also helping out with a few housekeeping tasks.

Because of the size of the group, we broke into smaller teams and worked on the various projects.  Team members moved around between teams to help out as necessary.

A small team went to work to level an area at the top of a set of steps where we plan to put a bench.  The job was challenging because they had to chop up hard clay and rake it smooth.

But the end result is great and the area will be a nice spot for visitors to relax and enjoy the views.

Another team tackled a challenging job to finish off some steps connecting the main road to three different tack sections.  The task involved figuring out how to logically connect the various routes and to build easy steps down from the road.  They started by studying the work done by previous groups and figuring out a plan.

They tested out a few different approaches until they came up with the best solution.

Once they were happy with the plan, they went to work digging out and levelling the area for the steps.

And cut the boards to size.

Everything was double checked to make sure things were level and straight.

And the boards were nailed in place.

When the framework was in place, they filled in the steps and surrounding area with soil to level everything off.

They spread a layer of gravel on the new steps and the result is outstanding.  Future groups will add additional gravel and shaping as necessary.

Another good friend and neighbour, Lyall, volunteered to turn some of the off cuts of the platform foundation poles into seats for a long section of track in front of the viewing platform. Lyall came out yesterday and cut the poles to various lengths.

And beveled the edges.

Lyall suggested arranging the seats in three groups in the shape of matau, the Maori name for fish hook.  The matau has significant symbolism to Maori because of its relationship to the sea and it represents strength, prosperity and abundance and respect for the sea and a safe journey.  What a great idea as visitors will enjoy resting on the seats as they journey to the viewing platform to look out to the Kaipara Moana.

He marked out the twenty-one spots for the benches and installed one along the path.

Digging the twenty-one holes for the posts in the hard clay is a huge challenge and we asked the group today to help out so Lyall didn’t have to dig them all himself.  The group went to work and managed to get all of the holes dug.

All of the digging required a lot of work and we really appreciate the team’s smiling through it all!

After the team finished digging the holes for the post seats, they went to work fixing up another section of track that leads down from the viewing platform and joins a new track that will give visitors another access alternative to the platform area.

The job involved widening the bottom of the track and levelling it so that it smoothly joins the two other track branches.  They started by digging out the old steps at the bottom and planning how to widen the track.

Widening the track would require longer step risers so they measured the new lengths and Thomas cut the boards to the right size.

And the new steps were installed.

While part of the team worked on the steps, others worked improving the newly formed track.  They ran a string line from the end of the existing track to determine the line of the new track and levelled the ground and dug out channels for side boards.

Future teams will finish off the intersection and the new track section.

Another team worked to fix up some retaining boards on a section of track that had been damaged and moved out of line.  They took some time to study the situation and determine the best solution.

They first needed to trim back some vegetation to get access to the work area.

They stretched a string line to determine the correct run of the side boards and where to put in replacement boards.

They cut out the damaged board.

And brought down replacement timber.

And installed a new board by pegging and nailing it in place.

The result is a considerable improvement in the track.  Thanks!

In addition to all the track work they did, we also asked the group to help out with some housekeeping tasks.  We had a bench in the nursery that we wanted to take up to the viewing platform area.  The team loaded it onto the ute and then unloaded it at the top.

There was some timber left over at the site and the team helped load and unload it in the nursery.  It was a challenge lifting the heavy boards after a day of hard work but we managed to get it all done.

In just a few hours the teams accomplished an amazing amount of work and should be very proud of their efforts.  They tackled a lot of challenging tasks on what turned out to be the warmest day of the spring season, but kept up their energy and smiles.

Once again many thanks to Linda for organizing the very productive day.

And a special thank you to Lyall for his help and creativity on making benches and Alan for joining us to today and providing valuable support and guidance.

THANK YOU everyone for all your hard work and efforts today.  You have all made a major contribution to the CUE Haven project and your efforts will be greatly appreciated by visitors as they comfortably walk the tracks to explore the growing native forest and visit the viewing platform.

We hope you enjoyed the day as much as we did and will come back with your family and friends for a more relaxing visit, and back again next year for another fun and productive volunteer day in your community native forest reserve!

Many thanks for your help and continued support!

Thank You!! Thank You!!


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