Holiday park closure a 'shame' for area

Ray Gunn
Ray Gunn
The Ettrick Holiday Park is set to close at the end of this month, leaving only one camping ground in the Teviot Valley. 

Just over a decade ago, there were three.

The Roxburgh camping ground closed about 2003.

Next Thursday will be the last day of business for the Ettrick facility, leaving Millers Flat as the Teviot Valley's sole camping ground.

When contacted yesterday, Ettrick Holiday Park owner Nicole Mason would not comment on reasons for closing the camp, but said it was not for sale.

A notice in a community newsletter published on June 27 said the Holiday Hair Salon would continue to operate as normal in the camping ground.

Teviot Valley Community Board chairman Ray Gunn said the camp's closure would make a difference to the area.

It had been used by fruit pickers and shearing gangs, and those people had supported businesses in the town such as the store and the hotel, he said.

''We are short of camping grounds, as it is. Taking another one out is a bit of a shame, but it must be pretty tough going.''

Mr Gunn said there were no other accommodation options in Ettrick, except the Millers Flat Holiday Park, about 6km away.

The community board had discussed the closure of the camping ground, but it was felt there was ''not much'' it could do to help, Mr Gunn said.

He thought the camp site, which was previously the Ettrick School, passed into private ownership about 20 years ago, and that the present operators had owned it for about five years or longer.

Bengerview Tearooms owner John Tomkin said the closure would have an impact on his Ettrick store, but it would not be ''huge''.

He understood the owners of the campsite had their reasons for closing, however, he said it was ''one less thing'' the town had.

''There's not much now, if we lose something it never comes back again.''

The Central Otago District Council website listed the rateable value of the 1.6ha camping ground, located next to State Highway 8 as $380,000, an increase from 2004-05, when the capital value was listed as $140,000.

It is believed there has been a camping ground on the site for almost 20 years.

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