Bid to rename road to honour cricket hero McCullum

Dunedin city councillor Hilary Calvert wants Logan Park Dr renamed in honour of South Dunedin...
Dunedin city councillor Hilary Calvert wants Logan Park Dr renamed in honour of South Dunedin-born test cricket captain Brendon McCullum, who became the first New Zealand batsman to score a test triple century last month. Photo by Stephen Jaquiery.

A straight drive leading to the home of Otago cricket could be renamed in honour of one of its finest exponents.

The switch - if approved - would see Logan Park Dr renamed Brendon McCullum Dr, in honour of the South Dunedin-born Black Caps captain becoming the first New Zealander to score a triple century in a test.

The idea has been promoted by Dunedin city councillor Hilary Calvert, a self-confessed cricketing novice who said she wanted to go in to bat for one of the city's sporting ''heroes''.

McCullum had responded enthusiastically to her initial approach, saying in an email from Bangladesh any change ''would be an honour'', Cr Calvert said.

She had asked Dunedin City Council staff to investigate the feasibility of the idea and report to councillors later in the year.

Public consultation would also be required before councillors voted on accepting any change.

The move comes after McCullum last month scored 302 in the second innings of the second test against India at the Basin Reserve in Wellington.

In doing so, he beat the mark of 299 set by former New Zealand captain Martin Crowe against Sri Lanka at the same ground, during the summer of 1990-91.

Since then, Dunedin's Logan Park Dr has become a well-trodden route for cricket fans and players alike, following the switch from Carisbrook to the University Oval as the city's cricketing home.

Cr Calvert said she wanted to encourage children, in particular, to look up to McCullum as an example of what one of ''our sons'' could achieve on the international stage with perseverance.

''We need particularly to encourage people to feel that, wherever you come from, however humble your place of origin or whatever, that you can do it.

''For [McCullum] to achieve that, he's had to keep going and do something that doesn't just come to everybody. It's a special sort of achievement.''

Asked if she was jumping the gun, given McCullum was still playing, Cr Calvert said it was important for children to see their heroes honoured in such a way.

Council staff had suggested renaming a road to honour an individual was something usually only contemplated after the person's death, ''but I think that's a big price for Brendon to pay'', Cr Calvert said.

Council acting information solutions manager Rob Garrett said the council's policy allowed for roads to be named in recognition of an individual's service.

It made no mention of whether the person should be ''down the track, as it were'' before being honoured, but there were precedents for such a move elsewhere, he said.

A section of State Highway 88 had most recently been renamed Sir John Thorn Dr in 2009, in honour of the long-serving former mayor of Port Chalmers, but only after his death.

Councillors would first have to decide whether the idea proceeded to public consultation, including submissions and possibly a hearing, before they had a final say on any recommendations that resulted.

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