The Earle Creativity and Development Trust Awards and grants presented today recognised the eclectic in history, literature and music in Manawatū and Rangitikei.

Mary and Richard Earle and trust member Richard Garland are the benefactors of the grants which have been awarded to "nurture innovative ideas, visual arts and science and technology" over the past six years.

Garland said he was "blown away by the amazing diversity" of the entries the trust received.

"The selection panel did the heavy lifting sifting through all the applications."


Trust chair Joan Brookes said the grants helped creators and innovators get something off the ground which was a difficult thing to do.

Zac Rodgers poetry Kick out to the beat was in essence, a digital presentation of slide poetry to appeal to young people.

"We don't talk anymore. It's rap and fun to listen to," he said of his animated short films.

Paula Harris is a full-time poet and said she was aiming to use her grant for four short films.

"So many people do not like poetry, because in high school we hated it."

In poet-fashion she said that over the years she had approached others to get her idea off the ground but they told her it was an amazing idea but we are not going to give you money.

Janet Mace has written a children's book Lucy the Girl who Listens.

Mace said her book came about after attending a book launch Treaty in the Ground in 2018.


"Lucy listens to the river and I liken the book's process to that of a river ebbing and flowing.

The book is in Te Reo Māori and English.

"The Māori text informs the story and adds another depth to the meaning," Mace said.

Elijon Fitzgerald has written a play Four Friends and a Funeral.

The play is set in the Manawatū and the people in it are fictitious, but it's a story about the importance of friendship.

Fitzgerald said he wanted his play to resonate with young people, "to role model and encourage people to rise from the depths".

Others who received grants were the Bulls' Volunteer Fire Brigade which will work with local historian Helen Cooper to work on a 50th Jubilee account of the brigade.

Murray Brown will be writing the History of the Manawatū Cricket Assn.

Brown said there was a lot to know about cricket from the early days when it was played in The Square in 1878.

"From 1879-1910 cricket clubs were a social activity and Feilding was the centre of cricket."

The Taihape Community Trust history project Tell Me More Taihape will engage the youth of Taihape to collect stories from the older residents of the north Rangitikei town.

Kathy Clark who is leading the project said they would start it in April 2020 and produce three anthologies over three years.

Rodger Fox received a grant for The Houston-Fox CD recording project which he'll be workshopping with school students with pianist Michael Houston.

"We will be working across music genres," Fox said.

The Manawatunes Barbershop chorus Workshops are a project to "enfold future generations of school-age students".

Giles Bates said music changes lives.

"It is an art form and therapeutic."