Franklin in photos

We’re a little bit country…………and a little bit city savvy, too……… with a whole lot of heart!!!

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Southern Corridor Update

Another update on happenings for the Southern Corridor, including part of the Franklin region, has now been published and delivered.

Auckland Mayor, Len Brown turned the first sod on the 21st October of this year – 2015.

The project will see –

  • improved safety and journey reliability on Auckland’s Southern Motorway

and extends 9.5 kms from Manukau to Papakura along SH 1.

Walking and cycling improvements have also been factored in to the improvements

Southern corridor improvements Nov 2015

Southern corridor imp Nov 2015

……and here we are again…almost summer….almost Christmas!

WOW!!!  Franklin is once again showcasing a great deal of things to do and places to be over the next few weeks – just to start the summer season!!

Our area is quite a vast rural one, on the outer edges of what is now the Auckland Supercity, (not too far from the airport) but also taking in the Northern edge of the Waikato region, so we do have lots around – the west and east coast beaches are great for surfing and swimming (when the weather is fine), but also fantastic to walk along and take in the sounds, smells and sights at this time of year.

Port Waikato beach
Port Waikato on the West coast
East coast beaches in summer
East coast beaches in summer

Right now we can also enjoy (well many of us can!!) a long weekend with fun times at the local Glenbrook Vintage Railway. This weekend is their opening weekend for the season and there will be fun aplenty for all ages,, including a country market day on Monday! gvr-steam-train-and-engine.jpg

Our local Pukekohe Performing Arts group will help bring back memories of a bygone era with their production of “Grease,” showing until  Sunday.

Then there’s the local markets, an Orchid fair and the amazing Blast to the Past at Waiuku!

Heaps of great accommodation choices too – motels, hotels, campgounds, B&B’s – you name it!! along with dining experiences of all sorts!

If that isn’t enough to get you interested, then just wait and keep an eye out for more happenings in the region – including the V8 Supercars – only a matter of weeks away now!!! and with Christmas looming ever closer, there’s always the Christmas display to help get into the swing of things to come .

bersanti day spa

Franklin’s new town…….

Franklin’s growth has been a talking point for some time as part of the greater Auckland Long Term Plan – we have Karaka growing rapidly and now there is more about  Paerata’s area – Wesley College.

Wesley College pic

According to reports , the site of Wesley College will be “transformed into a liveable town”.

Most of the college buildings, barring the historic chapel and a handful of newer buildings, will be demolished and relocated elsewhere. The sale of the sections will help secure the school’s future and fund the rest of the development.

Wesley College Trust Board general secretary Chris Johnston said the investment returns were crucial.

“The key beneficiary is Wesley College which provides for economically disadvantaged students.”

He said the plan was to transform the area and make it into the “most liveable town, within the most liveable city”.

Once built, the town would offer terraced homes, apartments, stand-alone houses, a primary school, high school, retail developments, green spaces, natural reserves and a retirement village – all interlinked with cycle, walking trails and public transport………….

………..”The rezoning will open up the Pukekohe area for new infrastructure and should provide new opportunities for those looking to live close to Auckland city.”

Pukekohe Business Association manager Kendyl Gibson said the added growth would help increase business capacity and enable residents to work locally. Plans for a high school were particularly welcome………….

……….Before any land is dug up the finer details need to be finalised, then an application for development consent could be lodged next year.

Pukekohe Paerata Map

Franklin Country – our awesome place to share

I recently had an email from a very kind lady offering to write about Franklin,and here it is – I think that she has covered it very well, so a big thanks to contributor, Suzanne Dear
A Guide on What to Do in Franklin Country

Kaye Maxwells Golf

Few places in New Zealand can match Franklin for the diversity of activities it offers its locals and visitors. Whether it’s enjoying some motor sport or horse racing, shopping for antiques or fresh produce, or wandering in the countryside or city, Franklin has a little bit of everything to ensure every visitor finds something to do. The area consists of a number of towns, including Pukekohe, Tuakau, Pokeno, and Manukau City, amongst many others, which means that the exploring never has to end whether you’re a local or visiting.

Getting here
Visitors to Franklin Country can reach the region by flying in to Auckland Airport and making the 50 kilometre journey south by car or public transport. Travelling to the region by public transport may not be as straightforward as one would hope during weekend and Public holidays, at present, however reaching the various towns of Franklin Country will be much more straightforward if traveling by car, and so it’s worth looking at rental cars before your trip. Before signing the agreement to rent a car, be sure to check what the rental does and doesn’t include – extras, such as navigation systems, are likely to be extra but will make getting around much easier. Also ensure that the car is properly covered against accidents or breakdown; driving in a foreign country can take some getting used to, especially when driving through busy cities, and it’s equally important to be properly protected in case of breakdown in more rural areas where help might not be instantly available.
Things to Do
Racing
Pukekohe Park Raceway (located in Pukekohe) offer both motor and horse racing throughout the year. There are a total of 14 horse race meetings from October to July, each tied to a particular theme that turns the race into a real social event. Car lovers can attend V8 Supercar and Supertourer events to see their favourite fast cars up close and personal, whilst those that wish to get behind the wheel and try the track for themselves can attend track days or take the advanced driving courses offered by Pukekohe Park Raceway.
Franklin Markets
Get a taste of local Franklin life – literally and figuratively – at the Franklin Markets, which take place on Saturday morning in Pukekohe and on Sunday morning in Pokeno. The selection of offerings range from the usual excellent, locally produced fresh produce, jams and preservatives, hot food and drinks, clothes, jewellery, flowers, and arts and crafts. If you only buy one thing, make it some fresh hot food – it’s excellent, and was even voted by the NZ Herald as number 14 of must try foods before you die. But whatever you’re looking to buy, a weekend stroll around the markets is what Franklin is all about, and shouldn’t be missed.
Get Active
Franklin Country’s beautiful rural location may it an ideal place to into nature and get active. Visitors to the town of Waiuku can choose from a couple of kayaking trails for their adventure that both take several hours to complete. The kayaking isn’t strenuous, but always be careful when on the water and remember to wear life jackets at all times. However, the water is calm, and there are several stopping points along the routes to take a break and enjoy lunch. Alternatively, stay dry by enjoying one of the many pleasant walks available in Franklin; visitors can choose from light bush walks or scenic walks around lakes. For a taste of Franklin’s beauty and for more activities (including hiking and cycling), visit the Hunua Parkland, which features thousands of acres of open land and even camp sites.
Franklin Arts
Franklin has a rich artistic community that produces a host of excellent work throughout the year. These are showcased – along with national artists – at the Franklin Arts Centre. Located in Pukekohe, the Arts Centre is Franklin’s cultural hub, and visitors can easily spend an afternoon feeling thrived in the modern building that was built in 2007; the site has two exhibition rooms, an art shop, and a workshop space.

Around the region

2013-v8s.pnga bit of a follow-up from the V8 weekend from ATEED and more
After a V8 Supercars follow-up meeting with local business operators and ATEED’s Events and Design manager, some points came up from the recent event held in the Franklin regions town of Pukekohe
It was noted that more than 128,000 people went through the gates at the Race track (as mentioned previously in another blog about the event), but not only was this a great number of visitors, it was also the 2nd most popular V8 event in Pukekohe – with the most popular having been the V8 race held in 2007 in Pukekohe.
Next year the region may have to look at how to attract our V8 fans to stay and play a bit longer right here – visit some of our local attractions as well as perhaps holding a few other events to make the most of the time spent here!
Now we are looking at the next big event of the IRB Junior World Champs (as posted yesterday)
We’ve had, and continue to have, a huge number of events in the area – big and small!IRB Junior Champs trophy

Along with some of the IRB pool games, we have the annual Antique and Collectables Fair coming up! This is New Zealand biggest fair and has some wonderful items of memorabilia, furniture and so much more on display to buy and admire, so if you just love antiques (and no!! not the husband or wife!! 🙂 ) then you really do need to come along and see what you can get your hands on!( check out the details here, also)
antiques

This could be a great weekend to get away from the cities and come to Franklin – our patch. We are only a short trip up or down the highway, so NO EXCUSE!
We have another historical moment a’happening too, at Matakawau – a milestone of sixty years is being celebrated for the Matakawau Church of the Holy Rosary, on Sunday 25th May.

The following weekend, Queens Birthday weekend, if you are keen on flying and war bird shows, then a visit to Ardmore is a MUST!
Queens birthday weekend is also the last chance for the season to have a steam train ride on the ever popular Glenbrook Vintage Railways steam train – open all weekend, Saturday to Monday.

old plane

With all of the action in the region, you just may want to linger longer – so check out our accommodation options and get in touch! We will take good care of you wherever you are from and wherever you are planning on heading to next! So – What are you waiting for 🙂 ??

Tuakau Hotel pic Touchwood

Franklin’s busy few weeks plus….

So – it’s been a pretty crazy few weeks or so with various things happening in the Franklin region (as previously blogged!)
targa-race-puke-2014
We’ve had the ever popular car enthusiasts Swap Meet, the Targa race, and a wee while ago, a get to gether at the Mercer Airport – yes that’s right, Mercer Airport.

Thanks to some of the local property owners/developers, Neil and Dee, Mercer now has what used to be the “Auto Dome Motorcourt” building as it’s airport headquarters. A few weeks back they hosted

Members of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) who landed 38 light aircraft at Mercer Airport recently and spent the night at the airport, dining at the Tuakau Hotel. The airmen and their spouses had spent the week flying around the North Island

Mercer Airport 2014
Mercer Airport 2

Over this weekend just gone, (1st and 2nd March) the swap meet and the Targa race were on the agenda – and what a great weekend for them both too!
Swap Meet 1 2014
Some fantastic classic cars were on show at the Meet!
swap meet classic cars 2014

So keep an eye on Franklin to see what is happening here soon…….
(And a special thanks to our wonderful Rex for the photos!!)