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Iconic Nelson venue plans to future-proof

Iconic Nelson venue plans to future-proof

Nelson’s iconic Boathouse is seeking public help with the rebuild, after Cyclone Fehi sent unprecedented tidal surges through the 1906 building on February 1. The initial work and cleanup is underway, and the building was unaffected by Gita.

Manager Ali Howard says a Give-a-little campaign was launched at Opera in the Park on Saturday night and based on the support from the public she is hoping for a good response.

‘The Council festival team gave us the opportunity to sell programmes at Opera in the Park and we had a fantastic reaction from the public,” she says. “There’s certainly a lot of love out there for the Boathouse, with many people in the community sharing memories of dances, courting and weddings going back four generations.”

Howard said with the help of good insurance and fundraising The Boathouse is going to be back and better than ever within months.

“Currently members of the committee and management are working with the insurance company, engineers and contractors to get the old girl ship shape as fast as possible,” she said. “Within the next week this team is expecting to sign off on the final scope of work and commence the rebuild.”

Howard said while insurance would cover most of the repairs, the Give-a-Little campaign and other fundraising would allow The Boathouse to invest in modern technology to future-proof the building for generations to come. She said the support for this was widespread in Nelson and beyond.

“We’re really heartened at the support from the likes of the Nelson Yacht Club where we ran a wedding that was booked with us last weekend, using our staff and equipment…so that sort of thing is a big help.”

Musician Laura Collins gave part of the proceeds from her concert last Friday to the rebuild, and local musicians have banded together to organise a fundraising concert coming up at the Playhouse in March.

“We also have an offer from a big name in New Zealand music for a benefit concert,” Howard said. “The Boathouse has been offered free or at a much reduced rate for hundreds of fundraisers over the years and it’s just wonderful to see the warmth and support that’s coming forward now that it’s her turn to need some help.”

The Give-a-little page is https://givealittle.co.nz/org/the-boathouse-community-trust# and if you want to help in other ways or have Boathouse stories to share please get in touch with Ali at info@theboathousenelson.co.nz


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