Paperwork holds up ambulance base

By Kristin Edge

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A team of willing workers cannot wait to start work on a new ambulance station at Mangawhai.Photo/Supplied
A team of willing workers cannot wait to start work on a new ambulance station at Mangawhai.Photo/Supplied

Paperwork in the form of consents is the only hold-up for a team of workers ready to start building a new St John Ambulance station in Mangawhai.

St John Northern Region district operations manager Tony Devanney said a team of enthusiastic workers were on standby to start the construction phase but paperwork was still being worked through by the Kaipara District Council.

Mr Devanney said St John had been working tirelessly for the past four years with the Kaipara District Council and Mangawhai community groups to ensure the station was what the community wanted.

Now it was a matter of meeting some conditions before the consent was granted.

Currently there is no ambulance station and staff have been sharing a facility with the volunteer firefighters. However, that building had been condemned and a new site for the ambulance station has been found.

Mr Devanney said the new station would house one ambulance and there would be accommodation for staff wanting to volunteer who might live outside the area.

Mangawhai, like many coastal communities in Northland, was a place where the population swelled in summer and there was a real need for emergency services, he said.

"We still urgently need more St John ambulance volunteers in the Mangawhai area and we offer free training and qualification progression, not to mention their support of their community," Mr Devanney said.

He said the project would not have been possible without the Mangawhai St John Opportunity Shop, which raised funds solely for the purpose of contributing towards the building.

"Without the voluntary support of a dedicated op shop team and the support of the community using the Mangawhai St John op shop, none of this would have been possible."

More funding was needed to see the station reach completion, Mr Devanney said.

- NORTHERN ADVOCATE

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