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Vigil Highlights Community Strength


14 February 2005

Vigil Highlights Community Strength

WHAT: Creative Community Vigil

WHERE: Corner of Willis St and Abel Smith St

WHEN: Tuesday ,15 February from 5pm onwards

A dusk vigil will be held next Tuesday (15th Feb) on the corners of Willis St and Able Smith St to mark the destruction of buildings for the inner-city ''bypass'', announced sustainable Wellington lobby group HEARTBEAT Wellington today.

"Many people are grieving and angry about the loss of heritage and community being inflicted on the Te Aro area every day" said HEARTBEAT Wellington spokesperson Roland Sapsford. "We aim to start the process of people coming together to share their sense of loss and support those who have stood up against the destruction."

"We are asking people to bring photos, stories, poems, ribbons and flowers. We hope to create an event that will make clear the strength of feeling that still exists over the "bypass".

Mr Sapsford said HEARTBEAT Wellington supporters have been discussing the need for such an event and several people have emailed HEARTBEAT asking for some community gathering.

"Many people are horrified at what is happening" said Mr Sapsford, "This vigil will create a situation where those who feel strongly but don't wish to be arrested can come together and support each other. Too many people feel alone and powerless at present"

Several buildings have been demolished with heritage fittings intact and furniture still inside. "The destruction of material that could easily have been saved adds to people's outrage." commented Mr Sapsford.

HEARTBEAT expects this to be only the first of several community events over the next month or so said Mr Sapsford. "Te Aro's spirit is bruised but alive - watch this space"

HEARTBEAT Wellington promotes the idea of Wellington as a living city and was most recently active in the last local body elections.


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