Kouga Enjoys Bumper Season

Compliments have been pouring in for Kouga Municipality in the wake of a successful festive season.

While the overall visitor tally is still to be finalised, the demand for municipal services was greater than last year, suggesting an increase in the amount of people who spent the summer holiday in Kouga, Executive Mayor Horatio Hendricks said.

“The municipal service departments were out in full force to meet the bigger demand and did a great job. We are very grateful to each and every one of them for helping to ensure a pleasant holiday experience for all,” he said.

The cleanliness of Kouga’s towns and beaches, in particular, has been widely praised on social media by visitors and holiday-makers alike.

“Our cleansing teams worked till late and were often up at the crack of dawn. It is great to know that their efforts were seen and appreciated by the wider public,” Hendricks said.       

Careful monitoring and management of the municipal reservoirs helped to prevent water shortages despite the thousands of holiday-makers and soaring temperatures increasing the demand for this precious resource.

“I must also thank all our residents for using water sparingly. While we had good rain in September last year, the drought has not yet broken. Saving water needs to become a normal part of our everyday lives,” he said.  

Early indications are that the local hospitality industry also did a booming trade as holiday-makers set out to explore all that Kouga has to offer.

“There was little accommodation left in Kouga between Christmas and New Year. Some shops were even running out of mattresses and pillows as residents found themselves having to arrange sleeping space for extra guests,” he said.

A full programme of events also helped to attract more tourists, including day visitors, with the municipality’s Opening of the Season and New Year’s Countdown drawing rave reviews from young and old.

There were also no drownings recorded at any of the official swimming beaches, with Kouga lifeguards keeping a close eye on bathers, while the NSRI’s pink buoys helped to save the life of a teenage boy at Jeffreys Bay who got caught in a rip current.

The safety of locals and holiday-makers was further prioritised, with the municipality’s Law Enforcement and Traffic officers working closely with SAPS, neighbourhood watches and security companies to minimise crime and traffic-related transgressions.

“What made this past festive season such a success, is the manner in which roleplayers and stakeholder groups took hands and worked together in the interest of the region and its people.

“On behalf of the Council and municipality, I would like to thank everyone for their contribution. We look forward to building on this success and welcoming even more visitors to our shores next year.”

Press Release – Kouga Municipality

 

A Caring Community

Community joins in to search for missing pet

The St Francis Animal Loving Community came together yesterday when a group searched an area from St Francis to Rebelsrus looking for a missing much loved dog.

This is a follow up to our article “Much loved Oakley missing in Rebelsrus

Local animal activist and chairman of St Francis Animal Rescue, Susan Rae Fox put together a team of fellow animal lovers to walk and search the area form the Rebelsrus access gate on the R330 through to Rebelsrus and beyond. Sadly their efforts were in vain and there remains no sight of this beloved pet. Commenting on the effort Susan said. “Thankyou you to all who  joined our Rebelsrus search party this morning. We wish with all our hearts that we could have found this special girl – but there was no sight of her on the coast or inland where we hunted. Hope still exists for although we did not find Oakley on our search, neither did we find a body. We hope she may be alive somewhere and ask everyone to please keep a look out for her”.

During the course of the search Cape St Francis Resident Hilda Bezuidenhout who was a member of the assembled search party came across three snares in the area where she was hunting. Hilda took the initiative and cut the snares rendering them harmless but this discovery highlights that more needs to be done to eradicate this cruel and callous method of hunting wildlife.

Commenting on Facebook Sandra Hardie who was very involved in clearing our surrounding bush of snares in the past made the following plea with regard to the snares. “I wish the residents would undertake regular snare hunts and I have to wonder if there is anyone doing same in SFB surrounds. Such a ghastly way for an animal to die and very often the snares are not even checked. OUR WILDLIFE IS IN PERIL. Snaring is illegal, but as with everything there is nobody out there checking. Please everyone I cannot do it anymore – make up some teams and demarcate areas to be checked”.

This is the farmhouse where Oakley lived while the Soms family were holidaying in Rebelsrus. She went missing 5 days ago and has not been seen since. The house looks down to a rocky coast and, beyond, to the back, is thick bush for miles.

There has been a suggestion that Oakley could have wandered to Oyster Bay and any readers in Oyster Bay are asked to keep a lookout.

All are living in hope the efforts to find Oakley will still prove successful even offering a reward of R2000 for his recovery dead or alive.

UPDATE- 9:15 Thurs 10 Jan

Susan reports

“We believe a leopard has been seen in Rebelsrus – and there are puff-adders, bush pigs and otters on this land as well. We were not permitted to fly a drone over the terrain since this nature reserve is close to the Airpark.

Our search continues outside Rebelsrus – in the townships of Oyster Bay and Sea Vista – and farms dotted in the area”.

If anyone has any information regarding Oakley, please call the owner, Koba Solms, on 082 407 1227.

When Four Pounds earned 8p

Movie Ticket Prices Set To Rocket

An article in ‘MyBroadBand’ titled ‘Massive movie ticket price hikes in South Africa’ prompted me to look back at the cost of movies when growing up.

Four pounds of used newspapers, 1.81kg for those who schooled after introduction of the metric system, earned us 8p*, enough to buy a ticket to the Saturday matinee at the local ‘bughouse bioscope’ in the 1950’s / early 60’s.

In a way we were pioneers of recycling way back then as we wandered round to friendly neighbours dragging our old 4-wheel tin cart offering to take all their used / read newspapers off their hands. These we would lug down to the local general dealer shopkeeper who would pay us the 2p a pound. 4lbs equalled one movie ticket. Having an older brother however required my collecting most of the 8lbs required for two tickets.

Returnable soda earned easier profits but it was easier to find teeth on the free range chickens that wandered the streets of our village back then so newspapers were commodity of choice. Plastic hadn’t yet reached the shop shelves and was, as yet, unknown to the oceans of the world but no doubt we would have devised a way to make money from collecting plastic if it had existed, so limited was our pocket money allowance.

Over conversations during the holidays my eyes were opened to the reality of bringing up kids these days. It seems the Tooth Fairy union has upped the price from a tickey (two and a half cents) to around a R100 for the first tooth these days. As for pocket money it appears that it is not unusual amongst more affluent families that their teenage kids receive monthly allowances sometimes double to what the government pay old age pensioners.

Purchasing a pack of ice this weekend I was horrified that the cost had risen from ten Rand to twelve Rand. Commenting to the cashier her reply was “it’s only two Rand”!

“It isn’t just two Rand” was my retort. “It is twenty percent. Neither your salary nor my pension increased twenty percent this month”.

Her reply was classic. “If they stopped putting the prices up they wouldn’t have to keep increasing our salaries”. So true.

Anyway back to the movie prices.

Ster-Kinekor has hiked its ticket prices significantly since last May, with movies at some theatres now 20% more expensive.

A 3D movie at one of Ster-Kinekor’s top-tier cinemas went from R98 to R107, and tickets for 2D shows went from R77 to R85

Suddenly DSTV and Netflix sounds like a bargain.

Click for more on the latest movie prices

  • Converting from pound, shilling and pence 8p was equal to approximately eight cents

Blues and a Picnic

Blues on the River Picnic with Gerald Clark

After touring Eastern Europe for a several years Gerald Clark is bringing his band from the Czech Republic South Africa for a 14-day tour!

The musicians joining him are some of the finest and most talented Czech Republic has to offer and they regularly serve as backing for international Blues/Country and Folk stars touring in Eastern Europe.

The band features Jiri “Lightning boy”, Marsicek on electric guitar, Tomas Hobsek on drums and Matej Cerny on bass. They form a formidable backing to Clark’s original songwriting style which is very deeply entrenched with blues and soul tweaked with a twist of folk and country ballads.

On his latest album, Afrocoustic, he had the privilege of working with members of the Johhny Clegg and the Freshley Ground band which introduced him to the African elements you can trace on his latest offering.

Gerald Clark & the Boys from Prague have be touring the Czech Republic and Slovakia over December, fine-tuning their set for the SA tour in January/February.

 The audience can expect a very tight,well-rehearsed band with an original fresh sound. A combination of international experience that these boys from Czech accumulated over the years and the magic that Clark has to offer.

Expect fireworks, solid grooves and superb musical experience which only seasoned musicians with their roots strongly in the blues can provide!

“Blues on The River” with Gerald Clark and his European Touring Band, plus possibly two additional acts will fill an afternoon’s entertainment whilst the audience enjoy a picnic next to the river.

The venue is ‘The Happy Hippo’ set on the banks of the Seekoei River in nearby Paradise Beach. It is a beautiful venue and great spot for a picnic whilst enjoying an afternoon of world class music.

So St Francis and Cape St Francis music lovers, pack your picnic baskets and family and get to The Happy Hippo on 27th January  around 1:00 pm and enjoy some family time listening to some world class music with your picnic lunch.

Get your tickets on Quicket.

Geral Clark

 

Recycling – a success story

Make it a permanent Recycling Facility Please Mr Mayor

The temporary recycling depot proved a huge success over the season. It was extremely well supported by home owners and holiday makers all of whom adhered to the requirements to pack their recyclables in bags with no household refuse being dropped. Those that made use of the facility were very grateful to be able to recycle. Feedback from St Francis Property Owners Nigel Aitken who took the initiative under his wing said “people complimented the way the site was managed by the two local men employed for the project. Thank you to everyone who supported the project”

A PE based recycling company stepped in to remove most of the waste timeously and one would hope that they be encouraged to continue assisting if the SFPO is able to convince the Kouga Municipality to leave the recycling facility in place permanently. According to Aitken they (SFPO) will submit a request to the Municipality to make this an official transit site. Here hoping the municipality approves the facility for the importance of recycling is becoming a major concern in countries around the world.

Some time ago, before the criminal element in Sea Vista put a stop to it, Rotary ran a very successful program where the kids of Sea Vista were rewarded for bringing recyclables to Gods Acre. If only this could in some way be revived not only from reducing the amount of plastic waste flying around the town and into the ocean but also as a learning process for the kids to recycle.

Obviously a secure drop off point would need to be established and maybe now with CCTV in place cameras could be installed at Gods Acre to allow this area to once again serve the community not only for recycling but also as the base for the Sea Cadets that operated from here before vandals put an end to Oliver’s work with the youngsters of Sea Vista