SH1 closure

NZ Transport Agency is closing State Highway 1 through the Mangamuka Gorge for resurfacing on Sunday. To do this work safely, the section of SH1 between Mangamuka and south of Kitchen Rd intersection will be closed to traffic. A detour via SH10 will add another 10km to a one-way journey from the Pakaraka intersection to Awanui. Road crews will begin setting up traffic management from 6am, with the road closed from 8am to 6pm. The closure and resurfacing is weather dependent.

Waipū winning ticket
Northland's Lotto luck has continued with another Second Division winning ticket sold in the region. A ticket sold at Waipū Lotto & Post was among 12 nationally that each won $25,648 with Lotto Second Division in Wednesday's draw. So far this year there have been two First Division winning tickets sold in Northland - both worth $333,333 - and nine Second Division winning tickets. Last year $12,505,770 was won in Northland on Lotto, $6,094,841 on Powerball and $2,398,156 on Strike.

Scrub fire
Firefighters were yesterday evening battling a blaze at Ruakaka that at one stage threatened to jump the road. The scrub fire was detected near Port Marsden Highway near the intersection with Rama Rd about 3pm yesterday. There was a fear it may jump the highway so police were called to help with traffic control. It's not clear at this stage how the fire, which was still being fought at edition time, started.

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Advocates needed
Whangārei's 155 Community House is looking for volunteer advocates to work at the 155 Whare and Open Arms Day Centre. Volunteers work with beneficiaries to assist them to get their full entitlements at Work and Income and encourage them to gain the confidence to advocate for themselves, their whānau and community. If you are able to commit to a two-day training programme, and to volunteer three to four hours per week, call Jane on 09 437 0185 or Val on 021 996 373 to express your interest. Training is scheduled for 10am-3pm, Tuesday-Wednesday, March 3-4 at Marion House, 155 Kamo Rd.

Community meeting
This Saturday a community meeting at the Matapouri Hall from 1pm-2pm will discuss improvements to visitor facilities at Matapouri Bay. In July last year a $1.1 million grant was made under the Government's Tourism Infrastructure Fund after discussions with Te Whanau ā Rangiwhakaahu and Whangārei District Council's application to the fund. Planned improvements include a gateway experience to the beach to remind people of its unique nature. These improvements will include signs about the district and Matapouri, including cultural narratives, landscaping, carpark upgrades and more toilets. There are also plans for a new wastewater treatment system able to manage large numbers of visitors, and water and power supply improvements. The main focus of this meeting will be the new toilet block.