Big Science Day 2015!

Pyrotechnics, Martin Jetpacks, MSLB Simulators and YikeBikes will take over Cathedral Square on 31 October. The occasion? Science Alive’s inaugural Big Science Day, an all-day Science and Technology extravaganza suitable for families and people of all ages.

Big Science Day logoThe displays, demonstrations, science shows and workshops planned are too many to list, but here are some of the exhibitor highlights you can look forward to:

  • EVolocity will have a roped off circuit where people can take small electric vehicles such as bikes, low powered go-karts, scooters, etc. for a spin. If you own an electric bike / scooter / motor bike / go-kart / car, EVolocity invite you to exhibit your vehicle (if you are keen to bring your vehicle along, please email, or call Rob on 021 728 875).
  • Martin Jetpack – yes, the one that can take off and land vertically!

    Martin JetPack
    Photo courtesy of @Martin Jetpack
  • COBi Digital will demonstrate its aerial filming capabilities. Using the latest UAV cinema technology, a camera can be mounted on top of the drone allowing unlimited camera angles.
  • MSLB Simulators will show its fully immersive, motion enabled boat simulators to recreate the experience of driving a small boat.
  • Code Club Aotearoa will be running learn to code sessions for children and adults throughout the day. Build your first piece of working software and share your creation on the internet.
  • YikeBike will exhibit its fully electric folding bike – check out the way in which many of us could be moving around in the not-so-far future.

As well as showcasing cool stuff and Canterbury innovation, the Big Science Day will reveal the many possible career paths in the area. Be inspired by the exciting courses offered by CPIT, the University of Canterbury and Lincoln University, and see how science and technology are used by the Police, the Defence Force and the Fire Service.

Photo courtesy of @CPIT

Make sure also to pop in to The Imagination Station at Cathedral Junction – if you haven’t discovered it yet, it’s heaven for Lego enthusiasts of all ages. There’s a huge Lego pit with tens of thousands of Lego pieces, as well as a Duplo area for the wee ones, plus computers for those who like their Lego digital.

Mike McRoberts joins Hillmorton Network News

Hillmorton Network News (HNN) celebrates a great partnership with the South Learning Centre at South Library. This is a partnership that utilises our expertise within the community to assist students to reach otherwise unattainable goals.

HNN students work collaboratively to plan, scriptwrite, film and edit their own stories. These stories celebrate individual successes and that of their school and local community. Each episode is shared to celebrate the school’s culture and to promote pride within the Community.

The Year 8 and 9 students have learned so much and were very excited when I announced our special guest, Mike McRoberts, would be part of our crew for the day.  It was a chance to hear real stories from a TV journalist, about his biggest challenges, his war-torn stories and his Olympic highlights.

Mike, an ex Hillmorton student, shared some tips and tricks when filming and left them with some powerful words – Never give up!

Here is our latest episode :

Mike 4

Mike 3

<3 Christchurch Photo Hunt

I love the Christchurch Photo Hunt. And this month it’s happening once again. I can’t wait to see all the new photos go up on Kete Christchurch.

Past Photo Hunts have given us hundreds of images of families and friends celebrating everyday events and activities from around the Canterbury district. They are incredibly touching to browse. The annual Photo Hunt, going since 2008, is slowly building a fascinating photographic archive for us all to share.

One of my favourites from the 2014 Photo Hunt on Kete Christchurch is a shout out to the fifities. It’s all about the dresses, the shoes, the hair.

Railway office staff 1958
Railway office staff 1958 (CCL Photo Hunt) / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0

My favourite postcard from the 2013 Photo Hunt. Postcards and old cityscapes, just lurvely.

Golden thoughts [postcard]
Golden thoughts (Kete Site Admin) / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0
And a favourite picnic spot from the 2012 Photo Hunt.

Camping at Coes Ford
Camping at Coes Ford (CCL Photo Hunt) / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0

We can all support the Photo Hunt by sharing our photos. The theme for this year is Arrivals and Departures – The Journeys That Have Shaped Us, with two categories of People and Places.

It’s easy to share a photo/s this year. Pick up an entry form from Christchurch City Libraries or download it from the library website. Fill in the relevant information and drop the photo and form back to the library or submit the information using the online form. Entries need to be in before 5pm 31 October and all entrants go in the draw to win a tablet or E-Reader.

The photos are scanned by librarians and the originals are returned to owners. The digital copies are uploaded to Kete Christchurch for us all to browse and enjoy. These and past images are also accessible from DigitalNZ, an extremely useful website for researching family history.

Waiting for Fish and Chips, Scarborough
Waiting for Fish and Chips, Scarborough, Flickr HW10-Ce-124

A few years ago I submitted a family photo and am so pleased I did. My sister-in-law took it as the cousins were enjoying a “day out” in 1990. The children had spent the afternoon at Sumner beach and finished off the day swimming in Scarborough pool. They had been having fun, as cousins are prone to do, and the photo captured their excitement as they waited for fish and chips at the end of the day.

The cousins are now grown and have young children of their own. I can’t wait to share this unforgettable moment in time with our new family members.

Let’s share our photos with the Christchurch Photo Hunt and help preserve the heritage of Canterbury for everyone.

Write all about it – Hagley Writers’ Institute

It is time to apply to the Hagley Writers’ Institute.

Hagley Writers' Institute

Libraries love authors – where would we be without people to write the books?

We are a great place for writers to study and research. Authors love to fossick around in our archives and old photos for inspiration.

See our page on writing – it links  to resources and materials for people who want to improve their writing or get material published.

Cover of The Exercise Book Cover of Fit to print Cover of The sense of style

The sinking of the Marquette and the Nurses’ Memorial Chapel

Nurses' Memorial Chapel, Christchurch Hospital, Riccarton Avenue ca. 1930
Nurses’ Memorial Chapel, Christchurch Hospital, Riccarton Avenue, CCL PhotoCD 13, IMG0036

The Nurses’ Memorial Chapel is one of the most precious historic buildings in New Zealand. It is also internationally important – being probably the only purpose-built chapel in the world which commemorates First World War nurses, and also one of only two public memorials in the English-speaking world to the little-known Salonika Campaign. Built in 1927-28, the chapel is now almost 90 years old. On October 23rd it will be 100 years since that tragic event that led to its construction.

It was on that day in 1915 that the transport ship HMTS Marquette was torpedoed by a German u-boat when nearing the city of Salonika (now Thessaloniki). On board was the No. 1 New Zealand Stationary Hospital, travelling from Alexandria. In total 167 people on board died, including 32 from the New Zealand unit; of these 10 were nurses from the New Zealand Army Nursing Service.

Photo of Nona Mildred Hildyard
Nona Mildred Hildyard, Kete Christchurch HildyardNM.jpg

The loss of so many nurses was extremely shocking to the New Zealand public, and the fact that a medical unit was travelling on a transport ship rather than a hospital ship, which could have been much safer, is still controversial.

Three of the nurses had trained at Christchurch Hospital, and it wasn’t long before the idea of a memorial chapel was broached. After a period of fundraising, construction of the chapel began.