School pays tribute to family with turf

At The Shanks Turf at Queen's High School in Dunedin are (from left) Roy, Nicola, Alison, Kay and Maxine Shanks. Photo by Craig Baxter.
At The Shanks Turf at Queen's High School in Dunedin are (from left) Roy, Nicola, Alison, Kay and Maxine Shanks. Photo by Craig Baxter.

Queen's High School has named its new hockey turf after the Shanks family in honour of their contributions to school sport and long-time involvement with the school.

In a ceremony on Friday, Roy and Kay Shanks and their three daughters Alison, Nicola and Maxine, had their family name immortalised through ''The Shanks Turf''.

The turf was installed last year and completed in 2014.

School principal Julie Anderson gave a small speech in recognition of the family's contributions.

She said she was delighted to acknowledge the Shanks family.

''Alison was our Class Act award winner in 2000, outstanding sportswoman and, of course, world champion cyclist, and has returned numerous times to the school to speak.

''Nicola was our head girl in 2003 and was most recently on our sports council representing Sport Otago.

''Maxine was dux and best sportswoman in 2011.''

She expressed her gratitude to Mr Shanks for his work with the board of trustees and his role as chairman for the Community Sports Council.

The principal thanked Mrs Shanks for her commitment as a school netball coach from 1996 to 2011 and her involvement with the Parent Student Teacher Association.

Former professional cyclist Alison Palmer (nee Shanks) said the turf naming was a real honour.

''The Shanks have been with Queen's for a number of years.

''Mum's coached and Dad's been on the board. It's nice to be part of the school's history,'' she said.

Roy Shanks said the family was ''chuffed''.

''We are really, really chuffed. Queen's has been fantastic for our family,'' he said.

''It's been a team effort. The staff and teachers are terrific.''

A new turf is worth $80,000 but help from Otago Hockey and other community members made it more affordable for the school.

The turf is a community facility and has already been used this year by hockey and football groups.

- Holly Bagge

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