Northland news briefs: September 26

Coastguard honour for Alex

A Northland man has been recognised in the National Coastguard Awards. Alex Wakefield, of Coastguard Whangaruru, was named Coastguard Rescue Vessel Volunteer of the Year. In nominating Mr Wakefield, his peers noted not just his technical skill but also his mana as a leader during his 11 years with the service. He is the past president of Coastguard Whangaruru and is currently training officer and master of the rescue vessel RV Tangaroa. Coastguard chief executive Patrick Holmes said: "Whangaruru is a small, close-knit unit which continues to punch above its weight when it comes to striving for excellence and producing community role models like Alex Wakefield, who is a credit both to coastguard and his local community."

ACC advocacy seminar

A Northland ACC advocate has organised a day-long conference to discuss reviews, legislation and appeals relating to the government entity. Jeanette Brock, who has represented many Northlanders at ACC reviews, has invited four ACC law specialists - Philip Schmidt, Hamish Peart, Andrew Cadenhead and Kevin Murray - to speak at the Auckland conference. She said 32 solicitors and advocates had so far registered their interest. "We'll try and form a body that meets at least once a year and talk about ACC review issues," she said.

The cost is $50 per person. Those interested in attending the conference, at Sudima Hotel in Mangere, can contact Ms Brock on (09) 435 6877 or

- Northern Advocate

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