Camp returning to what it was

A revamp of the former Frankton Motor Camp will take it back to its roots, its new lessees say.

Work is poised to start on the redevelopment of the site, overseen and funded by long-time Te Anau campground operators Georgia and Bryan McChlery.

It is expected to open in December with 130 tent, caravan and motor home sites, and 12 new cabins.

Ngai Tahu kaumatua Darren Rewi blesses the site of the former Frankton Motor Camp yesterday.PHOTO...
Ngai Tahu kaumatua Darren Rewi blesses the site of the former Frankton Motor Camp yesterday.PHOTO: GUY WILLIAMS

Ms Peychers said the trio’s goal was to take it "back to its roots" as a New Zealand-style, family-oriented camping ground.

"We know that Kiwis work really hard for their money, so for us it’s about making something that’s not only affordable, but amazing value for money."

The former motor camp was closed 14 months ago as part of the Queenstown Lakes District Council’s new camping strategy, bringing an end to temporary and permanent residential accommodation there.

It has since been cleared of old cabins and caravans, and all remaining buildings, apart from a house, will be relocated or demolished.

Ms Peychers said the redevelopment would include the construction of a main services building, new cabins, shower and toilet hubs, a playground and the installation of spa pools.

No fossil fuels would be used in the complex, which would have power-saving measures such as heat recovery systems, she said.

Queenstown Lakes Mayor Jim Boult said the former motor camp "morphed away" from its intended purpose over the years as it accumulated permanent residents.

"I’m excited about it returning to being a place where Kiwis come to stay on their holidays, and folks from overseas as well."

Ngai Tahu kaumatua Darren Rewi, who blessed the site at a brief ceremony yesterday, said it was used by Maori as a waka landing place, and was where, at the end of the food gathering season, items such as moa, weka and greenstone were broken down into smaller loads in preparation for transporting them to coastal settlements.

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