Brook Plan – Post submisssions.

Hey All,
I went along to the hearing panel deliberations the other day, and it seems all our input has led to some positive improvements! Vision 1 – labelling the campground as an ‘international tourism hub’ is not to stand. Neither for that matter is vision 2.. Instead, a new vision has been drafted, which reads along the lines of;
“The Brook Reserve serves the community as a centre for environmental education and conservation and as a destination for camping and outdoor recreation, including appropriately-scaled recreation and tourism developments” 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

Submission to draft Brook Recreation Reserve Management Plan – Moira Bauer

Below is my personal submission to the draft Brook Recreation Reserve Management Plan.
Its not as polished as I would have liked, sometimes life throws unexpected curve-balls that take your attention away from where you’ve planned to put it.. So be it! here it is.


Submission to the Brook Recreation Reserve Management Plan

The Brook Valley is a quiet, peaceful, residential neighbourhood, shrouded in green hills, with a distinct character of tranquility. The setting is perfect for a wildlife sanctuary, with its close proximity to the both the Nelson CBD, and conservation reserve land stretching from the Brook over to the Aniseed, and on to meet the Richmond Ranges.

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

Unite and Conquer – Meeting Sat 28th March

Greetings SavetheBrook followers,

There is something happening that you should be aware of.
We at the Brook Valley Community group have hatched a plan to combine with other community groups around Nelson, and are calling for activists / people willing to be actively involved, to unite our resources to hold the Council accountable to its citizens!
There seems to be some systemic mismanagement ongoing within our council, and as its’ citizens and therefore owners we need to do something about it if we want to continue to play a part in how this city grows and develops.
This meeting will be looking at broader issues than the Brook Camp, but be assured the Brook will feature heavily, as what is happening in this valley is generating concern within greater Nelson area also.
With that, I would like to heartily invite you all to attend our first meeting on Saturday 28th March, 3pm, in the Brook Camp lounge.
If your interested but cant attend, just contact us at .
Spread the word!

Enough divide and conquer tactics, time to Unite and Conquer!

Storm Fallout…


The Nelson Residents Association predicted this slippage event over a year ago and notified Council, now after this rain damage the feedback has started. Both Councils have invested in the fence, and both may be asked to contribute more money… that means the ratepayers!

If you are a ratepayer, supporter of the Brook Sanctuary, a mountain biker or appreciate the Great Taste Trail write to the newspaper and your council with your concerns.

Here is a Letter to the Editor from Bryce Buckland:

It’s started. Just as many predicted it would. The first rain has caused a 22 meter section of the historic 3rd House track to collapse, crashing over the scarf made for the Brook pest proof fence.

As its 2.8 kilometers from 4 corners, with difficult machinery access, it will not be simple to make 3rd House track usable again. As well, the Sanctuary fence cannot be erected until the slip and huge trees are all removed.

This area of Brook Fence is cut through unstable terrain with a back slope up to 65 degrees. The probability of slope failure was obvious to most and the fence should not have been allowed anywhere near 3rd House track.

I would like to ask councilor Davies, will Brook Sanctuary meet a portion of theses repair costs? If, as I suspect, the answer is nil, it means Nelson ratepayers will pay the cost of damage. With serious weather events now predicted by NIWA to be a regular occurrence, and the fence undercutting the entire 3rd house track, slip damage will continue and Ratepayers can brace themselves for the bill.

Or, have we just witnessed the beginning of the end of the Historic track to 3rd house?

Further comments by Bryce:

Needless to say I am in the “I told them so” mode and I am really annoyed by this first collapse of the Dunn Trail. I sent my letter to the Nelson mail last night. I hope that others will do the same and write to the Mail.

You are quite right about them ignoring the warnings.

The earthworks for the fence line are finished. The contractors were to have finished yesterday and others can be heard banging in fence posts further down from the 4 corners. The cut into the hill side below the 3rd house track is pretty scary. The top side is around 10 meters or more above the fence track, and it’s far too steep to climb down it. It is also overhung with huge Beech trees and they are ready to fall.

I’ve been told that mesh for the fence is not woven mesh. They went for the cheaper option of a welded mesh fence. I have been told that as this gets a bit of corrosion on it, with a bit of age and significant tension on the wires and it starts to un-weld and just a bang with a branch will see wires detach from the welds and the whole mesh simply flies to bits.

The great taste trail may now become unusable and the chaos is just starting. Wait and see what happens when we get a “significant” rainfall event.

Yes the carnage to the historical third house track has begun.

I have had a look at the damage and its 2.8km up the 3rd house track from the 4 corners intersection. The slip has taken out 22 meters of the third house track and slips over the scarf cut for the fence. Had the fence been in place it would have been wiped out at that spot.

This after the very first spell of rain since the fence line cut was made. I have no idea how the council can repair this piece as it will keep slipping. It also means the fence cannot be put in place at this point until the entire slip is removed. 50meters by 20 meters and between 3 and 10 meters high with big trees in it will create a lot of work for the Council to fix all at ratepayers expense.

I am really concerned that this may be the beginning of the end for the third house track.

Will you and others write to Nelson Mail?

Regards Bryce

  • Retrieved from the Facebook Page of The Nelson Residents Association. – – 11/03/2015

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

Brook Valley Community Group, Email Re Feb 12th

Hello all,

I have this morning checked in at the Council building to see the agenda for Thursday’s meeting. Our item does not appear. This almost certainly means that the report will now be presented to the Community Services Committee at 9 am on Thursday 26 February, a meeting which is to be followed by a full Council meeting.

Continue reading

CAWTHRON PARK Nelson Evening Mail, Volume XLVIII, 2 August 1913, Page 5



Last year the property of the Dun Mountain Company, comprising an area of 2500 acres, was placed under offer to the City Council. Negotiations have been going on for some time between Mr. T Cawthron and the Company, and the outcome was the purchase of the property by that gentleman, avid last evening it was offered to the citizens of Nelson.

Continue reading