Saturday, January 5, 2008

NZ Post : Rural Letterbox Specification

Before you can receive or send mail in the countryside you have to get your letterbox registered with your local NZ Post shop. According to the NZ Post website rural letter boxes should:
  • have a minimum size of 400mm deep x 270mm wide x 270mm high, with a flag fitted to indicate mail is awaiting collection.
  • provide access by a front-opening, non-locking hinged door, facing off the road and fitted with a posting aperture large enough for medium letters to be placed inside without opening the door. The aperture should be no less than 125mm x 25mm
  • have the street/road number of your property (if available) clearly printed on the box in numerals at least 25mm high
If your letterbox does not meet the above specification then your Rural Post owner/driver can refuse to deliver or collect your mail. However, most of the owner drivers are far more accommodating and will usually deliver to anything that just about resembles a letter box. They will even sell you a stamp!
I particularly like these two letter boxes that are to be found in rural Canterbury.
More details can be found here:

Are you too old to emigrate to New Zealand? Think again!

A retired dentist looks set to become New Zealand's oldest immigrant by leaving Britain to start a new life in New Zealand reports the NZ Herald.

Eric King-Turner, a sprightly 102 year old, is leaving behind his home in in the village of Titchfield, near Southampton, to start a new life in NZ with his 87-year-old wife, Doris. They plan to settle in Nelson which is at the northern end of the south island.

More details of this delightful story can be found here:

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Cycling Proficiency NZ Style

Christchurch City Council encourage people to leave their cars at home and get on their bikes. However, the council puts its money where its mouth is and provides facilities so children can learn from an early age how to ride their bikes safely. The above 'cycle proficiency track' can be found just off Westburn Terrace in Burnside. There are roundabouts, level crossings and road junctions so the youngsters get their confidence before hitting the road. It is a great facility.

C-JAM : Home Comforts (Part 2) - The Dishwasher

Scouts leaders really hate being left with the washing-up so we have devised an ingenious way to get the washing up undertaken.

Yep, that's right ...... we get the scouts to do it!

C-JAM : Home Comforts (Part 1) - The Washing Machine

One of the joys of camping is taking with you as many of the home comforts as you possibly can. The Harewood and Bishopdale troop don't like roughing it, so we have taken to C-JAM our very own prototype camp washing machine to do the laundry. However, there are a few difficulties that need to be overcome ...... there is no electricity and no running water!
This is not a serious problem to the resourceful Kiwi scouts. The clothes are simply loaded into the machine and the door is closed. The soap powder is loaded into the soap drawer and the water is added from the water container. Then you need to add a willing scout ................... or kea in this case,

to turn the the bike pedal. It works like a dream but this prototype cannot spin - the next version will have a bicycle attached to provide the required gearing.

C-JAM : New Zealand Scouts Jamboree

The New Zealand Scouts have been holding their three yearly jamboree at the Canterbury Showground. 4,500 scouts from New Zealand and further a field have descended upon Christchurch and are having a great time. The activities have been very varied and have included caving, walking, climbing, sailing, canoeing and team games.

Bishopdale and Harewood Scouts are representing the Waimakariri which is part of the Torlesse zone.

The jamboree has a real international flavour with scouts from Australia, Hong Kong, Korea and the UK.

Bishopdale & Harewood scouts have been playing host to a number of girls from the Midlands in the UK. They have been having a great time and have taken in many of the sights of the south island during their stay. Will they want to go home? It is very doubtful!