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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Fog 11:30pm Shakespeare Street Leamington NZ

We have had a series of frosts this week. Today was cold and rather miserable – a black frost (a frost with morning cloud cover) – I am not sure if the daytime temperature rose much above 8-9 degrees C today which is a rarity around here even during winter – we are usually slightly milder than this. A related observation, across the river, is made on Velofille‘s photostream. And Phil. There is a change coming though – as always.

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Shakespeare Street surface failure

There has been much discussion around here, of late, about the state of Shakespeare Street. Shakespeare Street both north and south of the Leamington ‘commercial centre refurbishment contract’ is in a sad state. Significant parts of the late March early April 2009 surface application have failed. A bad batch of tar/bitumen? (I really have no idea). Aggregate wet when applied? (ditto) though this photo [2:34PM 23 March 2009] seems to suggests otherwise for the later.

This is what the northbound lane, just a little north of the above shot, looked like on Friday the 15th of May 2009. Apples and oranges I know – different lorry load of chip, different part of the pile – and in fact the south bound lane (top of picture) looks OK here. That is loose gravel/aggregate/chip in the bottom of the photo.

Same area on Monday morning the 18th of May 2009.

Council and contractor have set to work to sort out what went wrong with whatever metrics it is you use to decide such things. Folk with clip boards have come to look and record their observations. And the contractor has been busily removing the dislodged chip – cause of the most disagreeable aggravation – the noise.

Now, Shakespeare Street sees a constant flow of traffic, some of it heavy, – truck and trailer units including full milk tankers – day in and day out. 

I guess my question is; does the maintenance regime in place for Shakespeare Street match the usage it sustains? And secondly; is Shakespeare Street, and I use the above image taken this afternoon as illustration, correctly formed and structurally sound?

All the photos.

See here also. And just for good measure a full blow by blow coverage of Thursday 6th of November 2008.

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Maxines’s Collectibles

The Leamington CBD / village / shops / main street – call it what you will – upgrade continues apace. The weather has been kind – the work site busy and good humoured. Today Maxine’s delightful destination shop is sporting a flash new pavement. The power polls are all but gone – giving Shakespeare Street a refreshing contemporary look. Yes, I’m biased – it’s home. Work on the project began in January.

Maxine’s Collectibles 180 Shakespeare Street, Leamington 3432 | Box 791 Cambridge 3434 | | 027 478 9877 or 07 827 7666 after hours | open weekends only 11am.

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To those observant of such stuff – my colour rendering can be flaky at the best of times. Over the past month I have moved from JPEG to RAW file capture when making images. I’ve had skirmishes with RAW files – and used them extensively in the past couple of years – but. I am a late bloomer. Letting go and just getting on with it is the way to go. No JPEG backup. Of course the resulting feeling is – why didn’t I do this back in March when I first got the K20D. The new regime will result in more consistency. It’s certainly lots of fun.

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Broadband speedtests

Download Speed: 3539 kbps (442.4 KB/sec transfer rate)
Upload Speed: 507 kbps (63.4 KB/sec transfer rate)
Speedtest run at: 07:19 am, 17 Nov 2008 (Kinect | greater Leamington)

Download Speed: 942 kbps (117.8 KB/sec transfer rate)
Upload Speed: 864 kbps (108 KB/sec transfer rate)
Speedtest run at: 07:39 am, 17 Nov 2008 (Skynet | greater Leamington)

Download Speed: 3258 kbps (407.3 KB/sec transfer rate)
Upload Speed: 88 kbps (11 KB/sec transfer rate)
Speedtest run at: 10:15 am, 17 Nov 2008 (Vodaphone | Cambridge CBD)

Download Speed: 2377 kbps (297.1 KB/sec transfer rate)
Upload Speed: 83 kbps (10.4 KB/sec transfer rate)
Speedtest run at: 10:30 am, 17 Nov 2008 (Telecom | Tikorangi, Taranaki)

Run your own test. Also here. Commerce Commission.


Next door neighbour Tiger relaxing at our place

Tiger is our next door neighbour but treats our corner section as his own. At the moment he is bothering the nesting blackbirds on the Noel Street side of the house. The blackbirds for their part kick up an almighty fuss, when he is mooching about, which can be quite penetrating – a performance that occurs more that once a day at the moment. Rest assured the nest is well placed in a cat inaccessible part of a modest, but dense, camellia.

Road works

Laying bitumen, Shakespeare Street, Leamington, NZ

Laying aggregate, Shakespeare Street, Leamington, NZ

I have some comments to make here. Later.

Edited: 8/11/2008 21:14

Of structure v aesthetics and things that go bump in the night or why did we get a makeover when there are more pressing roading issues in need of attention?

This is purely anecdotal and I certainly don’t have any of the facts in front of me.

Shakespeare Street faired poorly during this past past winter. At one stage there were potholes galore. These have been patched. Like many streets Shakespeare has a rather patch work look and feel about it.

In my experience there are two major problems (there may well be others) in Shakespeare Street.

Lets assume that Shakespeare runs north south (which it roughtly does).

There is a structural problem immediately south of the intersection with Campbell (opposite BP). I am not sure what the problem is but it appears to involve water. Ground water or not it seems strange that this has not been addressed.

Closer to home just south of the intersection with Noel there is a fundamental design flaw in the road which has (empty) Fonterra truck and trailer units – along with others – rattling the foundations of the houses around about day and night.

Both are structural issues. So why is it that a couple of seemingly OK pieces of roading have been resealed?

Update 12:42 09/11/2008: Corrected a couple of typos.

Meet the candidate

Vote For Me

Edited 21:00 06/11/2008

I am rather late with this – two days – old news. Been soaking up history being made. On Tuesday morning when clearing our mailbox I found a flyer inviting us to a meet the candidate do the previous evening. I am sorry I missed it. I must admit that I did notice the six party hoarding installation, at the house in question, had been joined by a seventh – when arriving home on Monday – but could not read it as I turned the corner.

This I must add is the very house that sent out a charming young man, not so long ago, to tell us – and other surrounding homeowners – they were having a party and could be a little noisy that evening. Pity they didn’t use the same approach – it worked for me.

Hoardings or billboards

I have always called them election hoardings. When I was discussing the quality of said constructions this morning I got a blank look. Billboards I added and was understood. I have always thought of them as hoardings. Billboards populate desert landscapes for Wile E. Coyote to hide behind in order to ambush the Road Runner. I might be making that last bit up.

Anyhow the Greens win the contemporary look award. I think I saw somewhere they had flogged the idea from another Green party somewhere else on the planet. Whatever.