Water pipes to be recycled as picnic seating

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Historic features are set to be part of future plans at the Luggate Red Bridge.

Red Bridge reserve project leader Graham Taylor, of Luggate, said about 22 water pipes used for gold-mining sluicing will find a new purpose as seating for a picnic area.

The pipes were last used as part of an irrigation project at the southern end of the Cromwell Gorge before being rescued by Paul Crump, of Bannockburn.

He offered them to the Department of Conservation but was turned down, so instead the Luggate Community Association bought them for the Luggate Red Bridge recreational area.

‘‘The beauty of them is they are the genuine article, riveted,’’ Mr Taylor said.

He was hoping ‘‘two or three fresh people would step up’’ to help install the pipes and an information kiosk at the area of the site they were calling the picnic terrace.

The aim was to install the pipes so they they could be used as low seating.

‘‘We are just looking at some other people in the local area to come along and get involved.’’

Mr Taylor, Jim Bryson and about six others he called the ‘‘tidy-up group’’ had been involved for about six years working to clear the site.

This included removing a large number of wilding pine trees which had been reused as firewood for local people in need.

‘‘This year, we delivered about 78 loads of firewood around the Luggate area.’’

This work would continue next year.

‘‘But we’ve got to the stage where we are starting to see the wood for the trees, so to speak.

‘‘We have made great progress and I have been very impressed with the willingness of people to do it.’’

‘‘It has been quite rewarding.’’

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