War Memorial Hall stripped

By Janna Sherman

The condemned Hokitika RSA building is being dismantled board by board as veterans make the most of their salvage rights before the final demolition.
Hokitika RSA president Lyall Delore said so far the rimu and matai floor of the former function room had been removed in sections and then sold.
Various fittings and fixtures including the wiring, lighting, a kitchen stove and cupboards had also been cashed in and added to the rebuilding fund for a new facility to be built on the same site in Sewell Street.
Mr Delore said the native timber floor had fetched about $600 and more and more offers were coming in for salvageable parts.
“There are people chasing the windows and there has been an offer on pieces of the iron and wood stairwell.”
The floor beams from the function room, as well as flooring from the secretary’s office and the Elcock Room had also been tagged for sale, while some chattels, such as hand basins, were earmarked to be re-used at the Hokitika Centennial Pool at the back of the RSA.
Mr Delore said the salvage process had helped the building fund reach $18,000 in the three months. Regular garage sales, the last of which raised $1100, were the biggest contributors.
Support from new members and the wider community had also been “generous,” he said.
“The generosity of this town is awesome.”
The RSA is working towards building a $450,000 shared community facility back on the site of the War Memorial Hall, which was closed last year due to earthquake safety concerns. It is seeking a share of $300,000 of Development West Coast MDI funding through the Westland District Council.
Mr Delore said the organisation was also in the process of making a Lotteries grant application.
The new building will include a large main room, two office spaces, a small bar, toilet and shower block and kitchen with an adjoining serving area. The building concept is expected to be presented in a business case to the council soon.