Home' Napier Mail : February 14th 2012 Contents 9
NAPIER MAIL, FEBRUARY 15, 2012
2012 SEAWEEK POETRY COMPETITION
Calling all budding
poets to enter the
One Ocean - Too Much Love?
Friday 24 February
Get an entry form from National Aquarium of New Zealand
Marine Parade Napier, online at www.nationalaquarium.co.nz
or the Paper Plus Napier & Hastings stores
Military bands cut
Seven of the 10 New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) bands
could be axed in an effort to cut $900,000 from the $5.9
million spent annually on military bands, but it is hoped
the navy band will continue to show up for Art Deco
Those threatened with the chop are the various part-
time territorial bands.
Defence spokesman John Gordon said the plan would
retain the regular force army band, based at Burnham,
the air force band based in Wellington, and the navy band
based at Devonport, Auckland, which are all made up of
full-time bandsmen and women.
Vice Chief of Defence Force, Rear Admiral Jack Steer,
said the reforms came out of the Defence White Paper and
a value-for-money review.
It is envisaged that the proposed changes will deliver
long-term efficiency gains, optimise the use of NZDF
musicians across New Zealand and the reduced expendi-
ture will increase funding available for frontline activi-
ties, he said.
A decision on the proposed cuts is expected to be made
at the end of March.
Napier s Art Deco Weekend events co-ordinator Peter
Mooney said it would be disappointing if a Defence Force
band wasn t able to contribute the annual event, as it had
done for the past six or seven years.
It would be reasonable to expect the navy band would
continue with our celebrations, as the navy played such a
vital role in Napier at the time of the 1931 earthquake.
Children lend a hand
A new child-focused centre will be decorated with hand-
prints of the region s children when it opens this year.
As well as adorning the walls of the new Plunket
regional centre, the handprints are a fundraiser.
Parents, grandparents, caregivers and the general pub-
lic are encouraged to buy a handprint for $15, said
Plunket Hawke s Bay s Alison Prins.
They can either be a child s real handprint, with their
name and date of birth recorded on it, or a generic one.
They can be purchased through the website classichits.
co.nz/auckland/whatson/plunket or at a hand-printing
session at Anderson Park in Kennedy Rd, Taradale, on
March 4 between 11am and 2pm.
Bodies too big to burn
Bellamy at his
a coffin which
A report by the Health Ministry in
September last year showed there
had been a huge rise in obesity in
New Zealand adults over recent
In 1977, 9 per cent of males were
In 2008-09 the figure was 27 per
cent. Female obesity has increased
from 11 per cent to 27.8 per cent
over the same period. (Obesity is
defined as excess weight for height
to the extent that health may be
affected.) -- Fairfax
Crematoriums are being forced to
build bigger furnaces as more Kiwi
bodies and their coffins become larger.
The Hawke s Bay crematorium,
which is only 12 years old, is already
due for replacement, partly because it
can take coffins that are only up to
820mm wide, which the local cemetery
manager says is too narrow by today s
This, combined with the cremator s
failing parts, has prompted the mana-
ger to seek a new one, probably from
the United States and costing about
$250,000, to take bigger coffins.
Funeral Directors Association presi-
dent Tony Garing said: It s a fact that
caskets are getting bigger to accommo-
date bigger citizens .
It s a factor of a lot of crematoria,
especially older units, that when you
get a casket of extreme width, which
are becoming more commonly used,
that they are too narrow. That is not
uncommon. It s amazing how things
The size of a standard casket had
increased four times over the past 20
years and was now 570mm wide across
the shoulder, he said.
Coffins can be made to fit anybody.
I m aware of a funeral director in one
North Island town who once or twice a
year has a need for a coffin the size of
a single bed.
Most modern crematoriums could
take the larger coffins, he said, but
some oversized caskets were suitable
only for burial.
Gavin Murphy, manager of Hutt
Valley funeral directors Gee & Hick-
ton, is also looking to buy a new and
larger one. He runs the largest cre-
mator in Wellington, capable of taking
We hope to have a one-metre-wide
one in place by the end of the year.
It s no secret that people are getting
People always look comfortable in a
casket if there s space along the sides
for mementoes, etc.
People tend to prefer larger
Casket manufacturer Bernard
Bellamy, of Windsor Industries in
Pahiatua, said there was no question
caskets were getting bigger to accom-
modate larger people.
We ve got staff who have been mak-
ing caskets for decades. Going back a
few years the standard casket size
across the shoulders was 19 inches.
Now it s 22-23, which ends up at
660mm or 670mm wide on the outside.
We ve gone up an inch in the last five
The biggest casket Windsor makes
is more than a metre wide.
Sometimes we just make a rec-
tangle box as close as possible to the
required size, Mr Bellamy said.
Larger and obese people are also cre-
ating extra pressure on emergency
services. St John Ambulance is looking
to spend hundreds of thousands of
dollars on specialist gear to transport
obese people. -- Fairfax.
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