Public Opinion

While public consultation has been denied, we think it’s important for people to voice their views. Here are a collection of submissions received via our community engagement and public networking. Not one person has submitted in favour. The BWST must realise the alienation they are opening themselves up for, as a community project it’s hard to comprehend how little they seem to care about this.   Continue reading

Concerned Nelson residents to fight proposed poison drop- Nelson Mail

Last updated 13:06, March 7 2016

Residents in Nelson’s Brook Valley have vowed to take legal action if the application to drop poison in the Brook Sanctuary gains consent.

The Brook Valley Community Group has become an incorporated society so they can apply to the environmental legal assistance fund for help with the costs of preparing a case to to the Environment Court. Continue reading

Brook Recreation Reserve Plan Adopted

A plan defining the type of activities that can occur in the Brook Recreation Reserve was adopted in principle yesterday by Nelson City Council.
The Brook Recreation Reserve Management Plan will be used as a center for environmental education and conservation, and as a destination for camping and outdoor recreation, including commercial recreation and tourism development. Continue reading

Tiny houses ‘wow’ and inspire alternative living 

This article describes many of the benefits of ‘tiny homes’ such as those accomodated at the Brook Valley Campground. It also describes a real social benefit for having designated areas with clear rules and management. Here’s hoping the Nelson City Council keeps the proposed Brook Valley Relocatable Home Park viable and open to newcomers!


Last updated 11:05, September 5 2015

Retrieved from

Nelson and Tasman have long been beacons for alternative ways of living, with people calling yurts, shipping containers, house trucks, and in recent years, tiny houses, home. Stacey Knott reports on a growing trend.
Everything a person needs for comfortable living, including a fridge, bed, lounge space, full-size shower and even a double kitchen sink sits in a space seven metres long, and 2.4 wide. When people walk into the surprising spacious wooden house on wheels, owner Tracey Wood says many gasp a “wow”. Continue reading

The fate of an idea: Cawthron Park Forestry – Nelson Mail

Nelson Mail – Saturday, August 1,2015

by Christopher St Johanaser 

Two weeks ago, I encouraged readers to look critically at the Council’s situation with regard to a forestry block at the head of the Brook. I suggested that the Nelson spirit could be rallied to replant it as a mixed shelterwood forest, employing our superb local expertise and volunteers to develop a forest that would be a test-bed for the future, an example to the world. The timing is perfect, as there is an imminent need for a new Forestry Strategy. The Council has decided in the interim to proceed forthwith to log these 25 hectares. The proceeds will apparently be devoured by an existing $2.1 million debt in their Forestry Account.

Continue reading

Letter to the Editor – Nelson Mail , Wed June 17

Dear Sir/Madam,

Cr. Barker showed good judgement at the Council meeting on Thursday 11th June. He declined to vote in debate over the Draft Brook Recreation Reserve Management Plan. This was to avoid contaminating the independence of his role as one of a Panel to hear submissions on the Plan. Unfortunately, a correspondingly poor judgement was demonstrated by Crs. Noonan, McGurk and Matheson, also proposed members of this Panel. They demonstrated commitment to Vision 1 with their votes. What hope then for any independent perspective from them, any willingness, let alone ability, to engage with contrary views? Other panelists should now be found.

Regrettably, this matter demonstrates yet again the willingness this Council in general has shown to disregard proprieties in favour of vested interests.

If Cr. Lawrey and the Mayor continue to find the prospect of a gondola ‘very exciting’ perhaps they would appreciate being restrained, not to say tied down, to curb an unwarranted enthusiasm for a proposition still without a business case and certain to be high-risk. A wildlife sanctuary is no place for this kind of commercial venture. “Stars in their eyes”, says Cr. Skinner, and he is right.

Keeping the faith,

Christopher St Johanser
Brook Valley Community Group

Future of Brook for Discussion – Nelson Mail.

Bill Moore

The Nelson Mail14 Feb 2015

The future of the Brook Valley Holiday Park and the surrounding recreation reserve is to be discussed at a public meeting called by the Nelson City Council.
The meeting, beginning on Tuesday at 5pm in the council chamber, will update those interested in the progress of a draft Brook Recreation Reserve Management Plan.
Continue reading

New Technology Helps in fight against pests

New technology helps in fight against pests
Fri, 02 Jan 2015 6:40 pm
By Adrien Taylor

A New Zealand inventor hopes to add drones to the fight against pests.

He won $25,000 to help turn his dream into reality and a trial of his Trap Minder system is taking place on Great Barrier Island this summer.

Scott Sambell and his dog Millie are finding that keeping Glenfern Sanctuary pest-free can be hard work.

The 240 hectare peninsula is cordoned off by a pest-proof fence to protect native wildlife, but that doesn’t stop a handful of unwanted predators making their way in every year.
Continue reading

Brook Recreation Reserve Management Plan

Nelson City Council is beginning the process of preparing a management plan which will define the activities that can take place within the Brook Recreation Reserve.

This Council-owned land includes the Brook Motor Camp but does not include the reserve area currently leased to the Brook Waimarama Sanctuary Trust for a fenced wildlife sanctuary.

Council is seeking written suggestions from the public about how the reserve should be used in the future, what needs protection on the site and how the setting could best serve both residents and visitors.

This information will help guide the development of a draft Brook Recreation Reserve Management Plan. Other public consultation processes are also planned for early 2015. The public will be able to provide submissions on the draft management plan in March and April next year. A panel will also hear oral submissions on the draft plan before making recommendations to Council about its final content.

Continue reading

Suggestions called for Brook Recreation Reserve

Published 25 Nov 2014

Nelson City Council is beginning the process of preparing a management plan, which will define the activities that can take place within the Brook Recreation Reserve.

This Council-owned land includes the Brook Motor Camp, but does not include the reserve area currently leased to the Brook Waimarama Sanctuary Trust for a fenced wildlife sanctuary.

Council is seeking written suggestions from the public about how the reserve should be used in the future, what needs protection on the site and how the setting could best serve both Nelsonians and visitors to the region.

Continue reading

Plan to guide decisions on the Brook – by NCC

26 Jun 2014

Nelson City Council is taking a broad view on the future of the Brook Valley Holiday Park.

The Community Services Committee decided today to prepare a Management Plan under the Reserves Act 1977 for the recreation reserve that contains the Brook campground.

Community Services Chair Pete Rainey says the process will allow everyone to comment about what the reserve may look like in the future including what activities happen within it.
Continue reading

Sanctuary’s anti-pest fence gets final tick

Last updated 12:27 10/06/2014

The Brook Waimarama Sanctuary Trust has the final go-ahead to start building its 14-kilometre pest-proof fence.

Nelson City Council has approved a 33-year lease of 711ha of the Brook Conservation Reserve to the trust.

Trust acting chairman Derek Shaw said today the project was a community-driven initiative since its birth 12 years ago. Continue reading

Report favours Brook Valley gondola proposal

Figures stack up technically and financially


Last updated 12:58 04/06/2014

A feasibility study on a proposed Nelson gondola has given its backers confidence to press on with the project.

The Nelson Cycle Lift Society, which is behind the proposed gondola project from the Brook Valley to Fringed Hill, undertook the study with a $15,000 grant from the Nelson City Council.

The study has found the project initially sound geologically, economically and in its engineering.

Continue reading

Holiday park’s revival is ‘still possible’ – by Nelson Mail

Holiday park’s revival is ‘still possible’

Last updated 11:16 29/05/2014

A Brook Valley Holiday Park resident says the mayor is happy to discuss re-opening the camp, and has held a meeting of residents and interested people to seek support.

Moira Bauer, who has lived in the camp since the beginning of the year, made a presentation to the council’s community services committee a fortnight ago, on behalf of the Brook Valley Community Group.

Continue reading

Uncertainty over Brook camp closure – by Nelson Mail


The Nelson City Council appears to be pulling back from closing the Brook Valley Holiday Park, instead taking a broader look at the area and all the related interests and issues.

Council staff have been looking at the situation since Mayor Rachel Reese stepped in at the end of March and sent the closure proposal back to the community services committee.

Continue reading

Nelson Mail – Voices by Helen Black May 2014

As a Brook Valley resident, I have come to the conclusion that I do not need a television as I, unwittingly, have a first class seat to watch the convoluted drama of local government in action unfold in front of my very eyes.

The focal point is the attractive land of the 88-year-old Brook Valley Holiday Park, which adjoins the Nelson City Council’s Waterworks Reserve in the upper Brook Valley.

Continue reading

Gondola moves step higher – by Nelson Mail

Last updated 12:45 06/05/2014

A report from the feasibility study for a proposed gondola in Nelson has been sent to Nelson mayor Rachel Reese and Nelson City Council chief executive Clare Hadley for review.

“The report has been given to the mayor and chief executive.

“We are seeking feedback before further announcements are made, but in summary it is looking very, very positive and exciting.” said Jo Rainey, the man behind the idea.
Continue reading

Nelson’s ratepayers should not be saddled with Sanctuary costs

by Dan McGuire, itinerant environmentalist from San Francisco

Appeared in Nelson Mail Nov 3, 2012

I commend the excellent work of the Brook Sanctuary volunteers and support the excellent work of the sanctuary which is showing increased native bird numbers.

However, for valid and incontestable reasons, I totally oppose the use of Nelson ratepayer funds to pay for the predator fence. It’s certain that the cost of the fence will be far higher than what is being projected currently – and, given the terrain, there’s no question that ongoing maintenance costs will always be a substantial burden.
Continue reading

Death by neglect

So now the Nelson City Council has had to “show its hand” in regard to the Brook Valley Motor Camp.

Posted at its entrance we have notices proclaiming “closed to casual campers” and “no freedom campers”, yet surely these are the classes of visitors who should be directed to the area.

The posters seem to confirm the unpublished policy of the council to this facility since they took it over. Death by neglect seems to be the process by which they can redesignate the area for other purposes.

Their mismanagement of this potentially profitable asset amounts to a dereliction of duty which in some areas would attract courts martial and firing squad.

Ambitious plans for the Waimarama Sanctuary, mountainbiking and the like will affect the whole of the area from Bridge St up to the ridge of the sanctuary.

The council is obviously looking for a “clean canvas” in regard to the camp area.

How long before the concrete sided Brook Stream is covered over to make more traffic space and some of the larger houses in the area become “bed and breakfast”. After the Brook Valley Camp. could Maitai Camp be next?

John Watson, The Wood, 9th April

Letters to the editor
The Nelson Mail, Saturday, April 12, 2014

Download this page in a PDF format

Residents rise up over pest fence – The Southland Times

Last updated 05:00 16/04/2014

Angry questions were thrown at Predator Free Rakiura governance group members by Stewart Island residents and business owners at a public meeting last night.

More than 100 people attended the meeting at the community centre on the Island, filling the hall with people lined up at the back of the room and some sitting on the floor.

Residents wanted to know what kind of biosecurity measures would be put in place and how it would impact on the island, but became frustrated when organisers cut them off, saying the questions were not relevant to the topics scheduled for discussion.

Continue reading

Enner Glynn and Upper Brook Valley Rezoning

Nelson Resource Management Plan
Proposed Plan Change 17
Enner Glynn and Upper Brook Valley Rezoning and Structure Plan

Download here:PlanChange17-Decisions-report

Brook Valley rezoning notice

Source and more info:

Download this page in a PDF format

Fears of highway up Brook revealed – by Nelson Mail


The Brook Valley’s new community group is suggesting that a secret agenda to build a motorway extension from Stoke to the city could be behind the Nelson City Council’s proposal to shut the Brook Valley Holiday Park.

But Mayor Rachel Reese says it’s a “fanciful” idea, though a scheme change last year does include an “indicative road”.

The group, formed late last year, has leafleted Brook St residents to publicise a forthcoming meeting, urge them to make submissions to the council’s annual plan, and seek donations.

Continue reading

Park buildings concern – by Nelson Mail


Brook Valley Holiday Park residents fear that the arrival of some conservation training buildings will spell the end of their home but the Brook Waimarama Sanctuary says nothing sinister is going on.

The residents’ committee contacted the Nelson Mail on Thursday after NMIT building students were seen measuring up a site inside the camp, which owner Nelson City Council is proposing to close.

Continue reading

Council helps with Gondola study

Published April 2 2014

The Nelson City Council is to give a $15,000 grant towards a feasibility study to create a gondola and adventure park behind the city.

The Nelson Cycle Lift Society Incorporated wants to apply for a Resource Consent for the venture which involves a gondola from the Brook Valley Motor Camp to a point near the summit of Fringe Hill.

Continue reading

Sanctuary mulls long term – by Nelson Mail


The team behind the Brook Waimarama Sanctuary has not only been raising money but mustering strategic partnerships to help cement its long-term success.

In a presentation to Tasman councillors last week, the sanctuary’s general manager Hudson Dodd and chairman Dave Butler said it had so far raised $4.5 million and sought to secure a further $200,000 to fund pest eradication once the project’s pest-proof fence was built. The current cost of the fence was around $4.2m.

The sanctuary recently secured $1.25m from the Lotteries Grants special projects board and Dodd said it would formally approach the council soon to uplift its funding of $150,000 for the current financial year.

Continue reading

Mayor: Running campground not our business


Nelson mayor Rachel Reese has stepped in and told the city council to spend more time on preparing its proposal to close the Brook Valley Holiday Park.

She also says that leasing the camp to someone else may be “eminently sensible” and that the loss used as the reason to propose closing the camp is a “book loss” that councillors now understand better.

Continue reading

City has ‘too many camps’ – by Nelson Mail


The Nelson City Council has released a report on its proposed closure of the Brook Valley Holiday Park which says “it would seem that Nelson’s needs do not extend to three council-owned camping grounds”.

But the report, supplied to the Nelson Mail after a request under the Official Information Act, has been heavily edited.

Chief executive Clare Hadley said she had removed material “that does not relate to the Brook, and for which I believe good reason to withhold remains”.

The excised information Mrs Hadley has identified in the edited report includes section 5.4 and all five paragraphs of section 6, all under the heading “Brook Valley Holiday Park”, as well as four paragraphs from section 4, which gives the background to the report.


Continue reading

MP backs residents in campground battle – by Nelson Mail


Residents of the Brook Valley Holiday Park should be allowed to stay put, says Nelson-based Labour list MP Maryan Street.

She said she’d visited the camp after hearing that the Nelson City Council was proposing to close it, displacing about 50 residents, some of whom have lived there for many years.


Continue reading

Trust against closure of campground – By Nelson Mail


The Brook Waimarama Sanctuary Trust does not support the Nelson City Council’s proposal to close the Brook campground, says trust chairman Dave Butler.

The Nelson City Council plans to close the camp saying it is running at a significant loss. Public consultation is to take place next month with a final decision to be made in June. Long-term residents are fighting the proposal and have started a petition against the closure.

Continue reading

Reese seeking public office – by Nelson Mail


$185,000 revamp to improve access to mayor


Nelson city’s mayoral office and reception area is to get an $185,000 upgrade.

Nelson City Council chief executive Clare Hadley proposed the upgrade because the floor with the mayor’s office was inaccessible and looking worse for wear.

People visiting the mayor’s office go to customer service on the ground level.

Staff then ring the mayor’s receptionist to collect guests and take them through security and up stairs to the mayor’s reception area.

The new space will allow the public to go straight to the mayor’s reception area.

Continue reading

Camp in profit before council takeover – by Nelson Mail


A steep rise in staff costs and overheads is responsible for the threatened Brook Valley Holiday Park’s losses since the Nelson City Council took it over, figures supplied by the council show.

The camp was making money until the council took over its management during the 2010-11 year, its former leaseholder has confirmed.

The council is proposing to close the camp, displacing around 50 permanent residents, some of whom have been there for many years.

Continue reading

Check historical records

“I would like to see all the Nelson City Councillors looking up old historical records. Apparently the Brook Valley Holiday Park cannot be closed as it was given to the council on condition that the camp would stay open there in perpetuity. There should be some records around 1934 when the gift of the land was given.

If it is closed it will have to be given back to the family that owned it and a full apology should be given as the council is not fulfilling its promise to the family. Please councillors, look into this promise that was given by the council.” – DOROTHY-ROSE PALLESEN Nelson, March 8.

Download this page in a PDF format

Brook Valley Holiday Park’s Balance (comment)

“I am very confused that the income quoted for the Brook Valley Holiday Park is upwards of $200,000, and yet the balance at the end of the year is -$175,000. That’s a turnover of $375,000 for 50+ permanent residents?

As ratepayers I think we are all entitled to a full breakdown of both income and expenses over at least the last financial year, which will afford clarity about how this balance has been determined.

I am also very saddened to hear that the current tenants have been given notice to leave, and then followed by the statement that the council is just “beginning the consultation process”.
It seems like the decision is clearly already made. Unfair, unjust, and clearly not democratic.”
– KV Douglas Atawhai, March 8.

Download this page in a PDF format

Campground closure plan raises questions – by Nelson Mail


OPINION: It’s hard not to feel for the permanent residents of Nelson’s Brook Valley Holiday Park over the campground’s proposed closure.

The news was hand-delivered by Nelson City Council officials last Friday, and came as a shock to the 50 or so permanent residents who have made it their quiet and affordable home in a city where affordable accommodation options are limited.

Continue reading

Residents refuse to leave camp ground – by Nelson Weekly


“The brook camp is one of the last places remaining in this area where one can actually say they are camping in nature – the Maitai camp is on a main road and affords NO privacy llike the brook – perhaps the council would be better off marketing the camp better or close the Maitai one and merge them both – the brook camp is far superior for holidays – or does it have another agenda for what is a lucrative and prime real estate – the Nelson area is becoming more and more devoid of natural environments to holiday in and you can’t call tahuna a natural environment being so close to the airport even though the beach is right there nothing beats the environs of the forest and a nice dip in a river hole which the brook has in abundance” – unity1nz

“It’s such lovely place, I wish they would invest more in it to raise the standards a little higher and give it real go…
Continue reading