Matthew Martin is a senior reporter at the Rotorua Daily Post

Mill closure: Bittersweet time for residents

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Ra Daniels, Eastside Residents Association.
Ra Daniels, Eastside Residents Association.

Residents of Rotorua's eastern suburbs say there is no cause for celebration after the shock closure of the Lumbercube mill.

Deputy mayor and Lynmore resident Dave Donaldson said the news came as a surprise and he had mixed feelings about it.

"There are many residents of the suburb where I live who will welcome the news because they have been affected by the noise since the mill opened.

We are not trying to paint this as a victory, it was never about trying to close the place down.
Ra Daniels, Eastside Residents Association

"There are also many people in the community reliant on the mill for employment."

Eastside Residents Association chairman and Ngapuna resident Ra Daniels said no one was celebrating the closure and he did not see it as any sort of victory.

The association was set up to combat noise issues coming from the mill since it opened last September.

"It's a big surprise, nobody from our association thought it would get to this stage," Mr Daniels said.

"We are not trying to paint this as a victory, it was never about trying to close the place down, but it goes without saying that many residents on the eastside will be relieved the noise has gone.

"This does not mean these people are pleased so many people have lost their jobs, that was never the intention of the group. We all understand the need for employment and opportunity, but we were looking for a satisfactory solution to address the noise issues," Mr Daniels said. "We will be waiting to get more feedback and certainly support and assist where we can."

Mr Daniels said the group's Facebook page had been taken down.

Read more:
Surprise move stuns workers
Tachikawa/Lumbercube site: Timeline of events
Lumbercube closure: Local reactions

Tarawera Rd resident Teresa Day, who had set up makeshift sound proofing in her flat and slept with ear plugs to try and escape the noise, said it was a bittersweet announcement.

"I'm really surprised and shocked. I wondered if it had anything to do with the cost of sound proofing.

"In all honesty it's a tragedy for all those who lost their jobs. I feel for those people, we thought there was no way they would have shut it down.

"But, oh my God, a peaceful night, a decent night's sleep," she said.

"I know a lot of people in Lynmore who will be relieved, that's for sure."

- Rotorua Daily Post

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