‘Bloke auction’ funds new Becks playground

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Children will be sliding into summer at Becks after the community raised more than $7000 for a new playground.

The Becks Hall committee and members of the public hosted a fundraising event last Saturday night, complete with a three­ course meal and auction.
The auction allowed people to ‘‘buy a bloke’’ for their specialist skills, ranging from fencing to landscaping.

Committee member Tania Irons was impressed by the support and end result.
‘‘At times Saturday night gave me goose bumps and sometimes I was crying with laughter — it was the best night I could possibly have hoped for.’’

She said the men who were auctioned off were ‘‘fiercely fought over’’, the food was ‘‘spectacular’’ and guest speaker Judy McAuliffe was ‘‘really well received’’.
‘‘She spoke of the horror events in her own life and how she made the choice each time, not just to survive, but to thrive. From the tragic loss of a child, to the motorcycle crash that left her in a coma, Judy’s stories were heart-breaking, but left us all stronger at the end of the night.’’

Ms McAuliffe, publisher of Mid Canterbury magazine Spirit, gave the audience lots of laughter, along with ‘‘an Irish joke or two’’.
Mrs Irons said the highlight of the evening was the announcement by Becks Hall committee chairwoman Barbara Groundwater that the event had raised more than $7000, and work on the new playground would be under way by the end of the year.