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Seeing red: Mt Dick red seats shot

The red chairs on Mt Dick. PHOTO/FILE

GRACE PRIOR
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The red chairs on Mt Dick in Carterton were shot with a shotgun and run over by a car last week.

Carterton councillor Steve Cretney installed the chairs and had planned to put more red chairs across Carterton and wider Wairarapa.

The incident had been reported to the Department of Conservation [DOC], whose land the chairs were on.

Cretney had planned to put another set of chairs back in at Mt Dick in a couple of weeks, but the installation was halted while DOC assessed the situation.

He said the vandal had not done him any favours.

Cretney was hesitant to make a “big deal” of the vandalism as he thought it would be what the vandal would want.

“The fact that someone is discharging a shotgun willy-nilly is quite against firearms rules.”

He said he had found out who the vandal was through Carterton District Council [CDC] video footage of the vehicle – but decided not to involve police or name them.

“I have talked about putting in timber bollards to stop vehicles from driving into them, but it can’t stop a shotgun.”

For Cretney, the view at Mt Dick was the best that could be accessed with a car in Wairarapa.

But the vehicle access was what caused concern for DOC, he said.

People with disabilities could easily view the valley, where similar lookouts would take a few hours hiking.

Cretney said the vandalism was “really disappointing” and that the vandal did not realise what they had done to the red seats project.

He said if DOC gave him permission to put the seats back or add more to Wairarapa, they would have no choice but to agree to others throughout the country.

The vandalism at Mt Dick could seriously affect the chances of putting seats in other locations, Cretney said.

He had planned to install seats at Carter Reserve, Donnelly Flat, Totara Flats, and Mitre Flats.

Cretney said the concept was widely loved across the community.

He said he was in communication with DOC, and a decision would be made at a national level for the future of the seats.

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