The Integrity Community Media team are united in wishing our readers and advertisers a happy new year and look forward to a prosperous 2020

Looking back, and looking forward

by Andy Bryenton

The news in 2019 has been at times entertaining, confronting, and always interesting. Here, where your local newspaper is made each week, we have seen stories of sadness and triumph, growth, learning, struggle, debate and inspiration throughout the year. However, most of all, we’ve seen an upward trend as our part of New Zealand continues to grow.

General Manager, Deb Wright, says she has similar expectations for 2020 and expresses the hope that all those reading these words in our first edition for the year have enjoyed a safe and happy holiday season or are still doing so.

“To all our readers, advertisers and supporters, welcome back to another year, which we hope will be prosperous and positive for you.

We want to take this opportunity to invite you to share your stories with us so we can make your successes the talk of the Kaipara in 2020.”

As we start a new year, we’ve used this edition to showcase a retrospective of 2019 as seen from a Kaipara perspective.

Gathered together in this volume are some of the biggest stories of the past year through a local lens.

While nationally, 2019 will be remembered for upheavals like the Christchurch shootings and the eruption of White Island, along with victories in sports, political intrigues and the highlights of arts and culture. Close to home we have had a very interesting twelve months as well. We’ve seen new bridges open to speed transit through the Kaipara’s heartland, new initiatives to boost growth in the provinces come down from central government.

Our locals have taught Wellington a thing or two about training a new crop of builders to assuage our nation’s housing squeeze.

We’ve seen sporting triumphs, academic victories, big celebrations and mourned the passing of well-loved and noteworthy community members.

A new council has been elected, with the promise of greater community involvement in our local governance. By no means least, we’ve seen a year of artistic success as well, from our Kaipara Art Awards entrants to a well-patronised wearable arts spectacular, to the growth of the theatrical community as our stage performers go from strength to strength.

From all of our team to all of you — welcome to 2020. Happy New Year. We promise to continue bringing you the local issues that matter, and the local stories that help build a sense of community, each week without fail, direct to your letterbox.

Who knows what will feature in our retrospective next year? If you’re lucky, it may very well be you!