Autumn leaf, Shakespeare Street, Leamington New Zealand

leaf image footpath Shakespeare Street Leamington 3432

Cambridge and Leamington (by association) and the fact it forms half of our town, has had the marketing byline Town of Trees for some time. It works. Yes, there is the addition but lets just stick with this for the moment. Most of the trees lining the streets, on both sides of the river, are exotics and deciduous so at this time of the year we have leaves – lots of leaves. This can be charming for five minutes. Today in blustery weather there are leaves blowing every which way and things have become rather messy and cluttered and, not to put too fine a point on it, rather dirty and dejected looking. Then you get this – the impression of a fallen leaf stained into the footpath here on Shakespeare Street, just south of the shops. It has the look of a prehistoric rock painting.

Welcome to Cambridge New Zealand – the new flags

Welcome to Cambridge New Zealand

Cambridge Waipa flag Shakespeare Street Leamington New Zealand

The most impressive show is on Shakespeare Street mainly because last year’s makeover included banner friendly lampposts and lots of them. I know I’m labouring the point but design, branding, representation and display all fascinate. Yes, I’m disappointed with the choice of imagery – the rendering of what’s there is fine. So we have, held in our hands the Cambridge of St Andrew’s, equidae, a rowing four, water skier, footprints and a lamppost, a pair of cyclists – it’s around about here things start going wonky – the jumping trout, two shoppers, a wine bottle & glass and some indefinable fruit of the berry persuasion. The cows – well they are obviously down the back of the farm and the sheep – I forgot the sheep – they must still be up on the run off.

The Leamington shops

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Celebrating our flash new Leamington CBD / village / shops / main street – Shakespeare Street – with photographs, is a tad underwhelming – you really have to be here / there. And you can when the ‘opening do’ happens on Friday the 2nd of October 2009 (I think I have this right). I see Waipa District Council refers to our shops as Leamington Village – that’s with a big V not Leamington village little v – which might be preferable and ever so slightly more accurate. Using the term village does not annoy me as much as some mis namings but anyone enticed to visit Leamington based on the name is going to be rather disappointed. Not that we don’t have a handful of excellent specialty shops – we do – but a village it ain’t. In marketing terms it sounds twee and distracting for the traveller looking for an authentic Cambridge Leamington experience. Leamington Shops is good it’s what most of us call ‘it’ and local knowledge and convention must count for something. Leamington Cambridge history is unique and worthy of mining for a more suitable description – if indeed one is deemed necessary.

Attention Children of All Ages in Leamington – there is going to be a Treasure Hunt in Leamington with prizes as part of the celebration to mark the completion of the upgrade to Shakespeare Street.

On Friday 2nd October at 4.30pm (update 5PM) the Mayor will “open” the road to start the Vintage Car Drive By, which will be followed by the Mayor unveiling a plaque to commemorate the upgrade. There will be music, face painting, balloons, stalls and a sausage sizzle – all to thank the Leamington Community for their support during the upgrade.

Treasure Hunt forms will be available from Leamington Pharmacy from Saturday 26th September and entries close at 5.00pm on Thursday 1st October. The winners will be announced during the event to which everyone, especially the folk in Leamington, is welcome.

Updated: 15th of September 2009
Updated again: 28th of September 2009

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