From 10,000+ to 40 possible flags

August 11, 2015

The Flag Consideration Panel has whittled 10,292 flag designs submitted down to a long-list of 40.

If you click on the link you’ll see who submitted each one.

I am open to change but am not keen on the black and white or black and grey ones second and third from the left in the third line and I don’t think the second from the left in the bottom line is a distinctively New Zealand image.

My favourite is third down on the left, designed by Kyle Lockwood, supported, or variations of which were submitted, by 12 others.

The silver fern: A New Zealand icon for over 160 years, worn proudly by many generations. The fern is an element of indigenous flora representing the growth of our nation. The multiple points of the fern leaf represent Aotearoa’s peaceful multicultural society, a single fern spreading upwards represents that we are all one people growing onward into the future. The bright blue represents our clear atmosphere and the Pacific Ocean, over which all New Zealanders, or their ancestors, crossed to get here. The Southern Cross represents our geographic location in the antipodes. It has been used as a navigational aid for centuries and it helped guide early settlers to our islands.

Chair of the panel, Professor John Burrows says:

. . . “We would like to thank everyone for their design suggestions and we’ve been impressed with the very high standard. The Panel made a unanimous decision and selected flag designs we believe best reflect New Zealand’s identity, as shared with us in the values and themes that New Zealanders expressed throughout this process.

In reviewing alternatives, we were guided that a potential new flag should unmistakably be from New Zealand and celebrate us as a progressive, inclusive nation that is connected to its environment, and has a sense of its past and vision for its future.

The Panel has made its preliminary selection of flag designs that it believes best represent the range of suggestions it has received. It is important that those designs are timeless, can work in a variety of contexts, are simple, uncluttered, balanced and have good contrast,” said Professor Burrows. . .

Public meetings didn’t attract many people. That isn’t surprising these days and the process has engendered a lot of interest:

10,292 alternative designs published

• 850,000+ online visits

• 6,000+ visits to workshops and information stands

• 1.18m+ people reached by Facebook

• 146,000+ views of the NZ flag history video

• 43,000+ New Zealanders have shared what they stand for (online & via post)

For the statiscially minded:

Stand for NZ's photo.
In an open letter the panel says:

We want to thank everyone for the 10,292 designs you’ve suggested. Each of these was viewed by every Panel member. We have been impressed with the very high standard and greatly appreciate the thought and hard work that went into these designs. As a Panel, we have now selected a long list of designs for further investigation as part of the design review process.

A great flag should be distinctive and so simple it can be drawn by a child from memory. A great flag is timeless and communicates swiftly and potently the essence of the country it represents. A flag should carry sufficient dignity to be appropriate for all situations in which New Zealanders might be represented. It should speak to all Kiwis. Our hope is that New Zealanders will see themselves reflected in these flags’ symbols, colour and stories.

In reviewing flag designs, first and foremost, we were guided by what thousands of Kiwis across a range of communities told us when they shared what is special to them about New Zealand. This provided the Panel, and flag designers, with valuable direction as to how New Zealanders see our country and how those values might best be expressed in a new flag.

The message was clear, and the Panel agreed. A potential new flag should unmistakably be from New Zealand and celebrate us as a progressive, inclusive nation that is connected to its environment, and has a sense of its past and a vision for its future.

In finalising the long list we invited a number of cultural (including tikanga), vexillology (the study of flags), art and design experts to review the selection, to ensure the designs are workable and there are no known impediments. Detailed due diligence will now be completed on these designs, including robust intellectual property checks.

As a Panel, we’ve been appointed by government to determine the 4 alternative flag designs in a neutral and unbiased way. We are committed to doing that. We have selected for the long list designs that we believe best reflect the values New Zealanders have shared with us and you can view these in the long list gallery:

By mid-September we will select the 4 alternatives which eligible voters will rank in the first binding referendum later this year. This will be the opportunity for people to express their preferences and make choices. We encourage you to make sure you are enrolled to vote so that you can take part in this nationally significant process. In March next year, New Zealand will make history when it votes between the current flag and the preferred alternative.

Ngā mihi nui kia koutou katoa.

Regards,

Flag Consideration Panel:

  • Prof John Burrows (Chair), ONZM, QC
  • Nicky Bell
  • Peter Chin, CNZM
  • Julie Christie, ONZM
  • Rod Drury
  • Kate De Goldi (Deputy Chair)
  • Beatrice Faumuina, ONZM
  • Lt Gen (Rtd) Rhys Jones, CNZM
  • Stephen Jones
  • Sir Brian Lochore, ONZ, KNZM, OBE
  • Malcolm Mulholland
  • Hana O’Regan.

And for those who aren’t sure if we should be considering a change:

Brent Desmond Cook's photo.


Thanks for the stadium, Malcolm

August 8, 2011

Malcolm Farry and the team promoting the Forsyth Barr stadium have faced a barrage of criticism over the design, location and cost.

They stayed firm, focussed on building a stadium we could be proud of and it opened on Friday – more or less on time and to budget.

That was no small achievement and the stadium itself is a wonderful asset not just for Dunedin but the lower South Island and, at least until the rest of New Zealand catches up, the country.

Thank you Malcolm, you and your team have done a really good job.

Snow threatened yesterday morning and there was a polar wind blowing when we got to Dunedin an hour before kick-off in the match between North Otago and West Coast. Inside the stadium and out of the wind, though the temperature was merely cool but not uncomfortable.

We were on the lower level of the south stand near the 22m line and had a good view of the whole field. The loos were spotless and plentiful – 38 loos and 14 hand basins with high speed hand dryers for women  at either end of each level and men reported more than enough for them. 

I have just a couple of recommendations for improvements – a responsible host might consider selling water for less than $5 a bottle when beer cost just $1 more; and there would be a market for hot drinks as well as cold.

Hundreds of North Otago people had come down to inspect the stadium and cheer on the team. We were rewarded when halfback Hamish McKenzie went over for the historic first inter-provincial try at the stadium.

North Otago kept the lead, although the final score , 29-19, probably flattered the team .

For more words and some photos of the stadium and yesterday’s game check out this baby makes it all worth while by  Hayden Meikle  and a match report in the ODT and Mydeology’s day 5 of opt-out watch Forsyth Barr stadium bonanza edition.

Former Dunedin mayor Peter Chin and sitting councsellor Lee Vandervis debated stadium funding on Afternoons.


Money can’t buy me an election

December 4, 2010

More proof that the amount you spend on electioneering isn’t directly related to the result:

Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull spent more than $13,000 in his campaign to win the mayoral chains – nearly $30,000 less than Peter Chin did in his campaign not to lose them.

Documents Mr Cull filed with Dunedin electoral officer Pam Jordan this week show he spent $13,517 on his successful tilt at the city mayoralty.

It would be difficult to win an election without spending some money but this is one of many cases where the winner spent a lot less than the loser.

Money helps but it can’t buy love from voters. It is only one of many ingredients in successful campaigns and spending more doesn’t guarantee a better result.


It’s official – Prentice vs Shadbolt for mayoralty

April 12, 2010

Suzanne Prentice has confirmed the rumours – she is standing for the Invercargill mayoralty.

In a media statement she said:

 “I want to bring a fresh, energetic and focused approach and to afford the position of mayor the dignity which it deserves,” she said.

“I have thought long and hard about standing and keep finding myself concerned for the future of our city, its residents and its ratepayers.

“I want to take Invercargill forward and to lead an inspired, united, and focused council which strives to build a vibrant and prosperous city.”

Ms Prentice said she had been overwhelmed at the tremendous support and encouragement she had received from many concerned residents in regard to her standing.

“I thank every one of them for putting their trust in me and I want them to know that I will take their views forward as I now officially confirm my intention to stand.”

It was now time to focus on the future of the city, she said.

“We have some very experienced councillors with a great deal to offer. Unfortunately the distractions of the past two to three years have, to a certain degree, detracted from the positive work which they have done.

“Given the right leadership and direction, I believe we can build a cohesive team which puts its energy into what is best for Invercargill.

“I also have enormous respect for the employees of the Invercargill City Council, their work continues to be a credit to them all, sometimes in trying circumstances.”

Ms Prentice said she would be honoured to be the mayor of Invercargill

“I consider myself to be a true Southlander – my heart and my home are in this city and my family have had a long and proud association with Invercargill.”

Her father was born in Invercargill and after the war he and his English bride returned and made it their home.

“This was the place where they raised their three children, just as my husband Stephen and I have done with our children, Blair and Andrea, and as our son Blair continues to do with his wife Vanessa.

“We are a true and loyal Invercargill family,” she said, “and I know that I have their support as I embark on this new and important journey.”

Tim Shadbolt is an experienced and wily campaigner. Until now I would have thought the Invercargill mayoralty was his as long as he wanted it.

But the last term has been difficult and if anyone can beat him it would be Suzanne. She is a born and bred Southlander,  is very well known through her career as a singer and her community work and has served an apprenticeship in local body politics on the Invercargill Licensing Trust.

Busted Blonde who know a lot more about Southland than I do, gives her view on the mayoral race here.

Prentice’s announcement is the first official indication of any challenge to incumbent mayors in the south.

However, that may change.

The stadium has been very controversial in Dunedin and that may persuade someone to challenge sitting mayor Peter Chin. However, a would-be mayor has to do more than stand against something, s/he needs to stand for something too.

Concerns over the Otago Regional Council have been nowhere near as serious as those afflicting Environment Canterbury, but there may be enough dissatisfaction to drive a campaign against the chair and some sitting councillors.

Waitaki mayor Alex Familton has yet to announce his intentions but if I was a betting woman I’d put a little money on him standing again.

The grapevine has mentioned deputy mayor Gary Kircher and sitting councillor Jim Hopkins as possible contenders for the mayoralty, but is less sure about whether they would challenge Alex if he stands again.


It was the cheap beer…

August 26, 2008

Some blame  cheap beer  at Dunedin supermarkets for unruly behaviour in the wake of the weekend’s Undie 500.

Mayor Peter Chin also blames the media.

The cheap beer may have been a contributing factor. But the people who did stupid things are the ones ultimately responsible for doing them.


No way without a willy

August 21, 2008

The headline DCC councillors ‘need a willy to progress’ – Butcher  was guaranteed to get media attention, but is she right?

“You have to have a willy to get anywhere in this council.”

That was Dunedin city councillor Fliss Butcher’s reaction this week after she was overlooked for the role of council appointee on the advisory board of the University of Otago’s centre for entrepreneurship council.

She says sexism is behind the decision – a claim hotly denied last night by Mayor Peter Chin.

I don’t know enough about this particular case or the DCC in general to know if her claim of sexism is fair.

But if it is there are better ways to go about countering it than having a public tantrum.


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