Country towns which nearly died during the 80s ag-sag are getting new leases of life for a variety of reasons.
Improvements in technology enable people to run their businesses from almost anywhere. A couple who live near us make a very good living from importing goods and selling them on Trade Me.
Changes in land use from extensive sheep and beef farming to more intensive dairying, horticulture and viticulture have created more jobs and brought more people into country districts which flows through in to the wee towns.
A group of us went to Jo’s cooking school last year. She told us their first year had gone much better than they’d budgeted for and it was easy to see why. After enjoying the cooking lesson and meal we all bought something at the homeware store on our way out.
But it’s not just the Seagars who are doing well, their business has brought people into their new home town which has created opportunities for other businesses. One of which is Emmas at Oxford a book, gift and gourmet essentials store which Jo encouraged us to visit before we left town.
TV3 profiled Jo and her impact on Oxford. You can read about it and watch the video here.