Reply To: Ryton Bay Development at Lake Coleridge

Ian Dampier
Ref: “Lake Project in New Hands” (by Tina Law) The Press, Saturday, 12 January 2008


Those of you who use Lake Coleridge will be interested to note that The Ryton Station has been sold yet again. Ref: “Lake Project in New Hands” (Tina Law) The Press, Saturday, 12 January 2008.    While the users of the Ryton Bay should be pleased to see the back of Phillip Burmester, unfortunately his departure does not spell an end to the proposed development at the Ryton Bay  as the new owner, who laughably calls himself a “conservationist”, intends to continue with the project.   The new owner has clearly stated his views in regard in the present users of the Ryton Bay referring to our collection of caravans and huts as an “eyesore”.    Aided by the journalistic abilities of Tina Law of “The Press”  to articulate his views the new owner is critical of the abstraction of water for use by campers and the existing methods of sewage disposal.   Overall he describes the situation as “unhealthy”.  I refer to Ms Law’s as, is so often the case with her profession, journalists fail to adequately investigate before going to print,  with the end result of failing to present all the facts and ultimately presenting a biased store or point of view.

The piped water provided to campers for domestic purposes was initially very kindly put in by the previous owners of the property the Mears, who for years enjoyed a cordial relationship with their tenants.    There is an ecological self composting toilet at the Ryton which I believe was erected by the Department of Conservation.  This is by far the most extensively used toilet facility.   It is a clean well kept facility that is looked after and respected by its users.  In addition there are a very small number of private long-drop toilets.  While I believe long drop style toilets no longer comply with resource consent requirements these structures are situated well away from any water source and the soil structure provides safe and effective waste disposal.   Bearing in mind that these facilities only receive intermittent season use the environmental impact is minimal.  As to whether the existing camping facilities at the Ryton Bay are an eyesore is a matter of personal opinion.    To most of the users I am sure it represents a piece of paradise.

While the new owner may choose to masquerade under the title of   conservationist you can rest assured that the environmental impact of the proposed development will far out way the very limited impact of the existing activities at the Ryton Bay