Sorry kids, it’s not all right


Party-pooper threatens Wakatipu High student bash by blocking their consent application. But law’s the law, says LE.

Wakatipu High students may have to can their formal after-party – all because of some wind.

Year 13 students face a resource consent objection – yes, a resource consent is needed for a high school party – over a late-night bash in the early hours of Sunday, April 5.

The objection comes from a Frankton resident near the Tex Smith Lane venue, after complaints about last year’s noise.

After-party committee head Matiu Gourlay, 16, blames last year’s weather.

“I know it seems a bit comical but it was fine till 3.30 in the morning, when the wind changed and it just blew the noise [toward the residential area],” he says.

“We got complaints so we turned the [speakers] off and had the music down real low.”

The 2009 event is limited to 250 people, with security guards, parent supervisors and little alcohol, he adds.

But Lakes Environmental planning boss Brian Fitzpatrick says a party-pooping resident has already called him to protest about this year’s planned do immediately opposite Remark­ables Park.

The youngsters must either sweet-talk the complainant or change venues because there’s not enough time to appeal an objection, Fitzpatrick says.

“If they had a lot of time and money that’d be fine, but they don’t – they just want to have a party – so we want them to have it in a place that doesn’t upset neighbours.”

LE issued last year’s consent free of charge but may reconsider if “it’s a highly contentious and expensive consent” this year, says Fitzpatrick.

Gourlay reckons the student committee – independent of the school – applied for the consent a fortnight ago and, unlike last year, forewarned residents.

The fenced site is central and if consent is blocked, the party most likely won’t happen, he says.

“We don’t have a very big budget so to get a farm paddock we’d have to rent fencing, buses … it’s way out of our league.”

Gourlay doesn’t understand the opposition.

“When I’m 40 with a family and students come to me and say, ‘Look, it’s one night a year, we’re creating a safe environment and just making a little bit of noise’, I’d say, ‘Yeah, sweet, I was a child too’.”