FYI - Four Square is back

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Four Square assistant Jude Robson (left) with i-Site worker Mere Morunga. Photo / Peter de Graaf
Four Square assistant Jude Robson (left) with i-Site worker Mere Morunga. Photo / Peter de Graaf

Opononi's visitor information centre has been converted into a temporary grocery store until the Hokianga town's Four Square is rebuilt.

The store was destroyed by fire in June after rain got into wiring in the roof. Firefighters and a local armed with a garden hose managed to stop the inferno spreading to the adjoining hotel or nearby community hall.

The blaze forced Opononi residents to drive to Rawene or Waimamaku for their groceries until Four Square owner Paresh Patel was able to open a temporary shop in the council-owned i-Site building.

A tourist information counter still operates in one corner.

Mr Patel said the temporary shop did not have the full range of the old store but he tried to cover the basics and was open the same hours, 7am to 7pm.

The postal centre, relocated to Omapere for the first few weeks after the fire, had been incorporated in the temporary shop.

Customers had been very supportive of his family since the blaze, he said.

The building's owner was planning to rebuild but Mr Patel did not know when he would be able to reopen at the site.

Information centre worker Mere Morunga said the arrangement had confused some visitors but improved signage would help counter that.

- NORTHERN ADVOCATE

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