The remote reaches of the Marlborough Sounds are now a wingspan closer for those affected by the July storm.
Pelorus Air is the latest local transport operator to join the cause to reconnect eligible residents, business owners, tradespeople, essential services and visitors by getting on board with the Marlborough District Council’s transport subsidy scheme.
The Council is now subsidising air transport with the locally owned and operated Koromiko-based airline at $25 per person, one way, with departures available to and from Picton and Wellington. This is in addition to the water taxi subsidy already available from Havelock and Picton.
“All residents, businesses owners, tradespeople, essential services and visitors who would normally use the Kenepuru Road are eligible for the subsidy,” said Marlborough Recovery Manager Dean Heiford.
“We have worked closely with the team at Destination Marlborough to bring Pelorus Air on board with this initiative and it adds another transport option for those eligible, particularly into some areas that are harder to reach by water taxi,” he said.
The services available include Wellington to Nopera, Elie, Clova Bay, Port Gore; Picton to Nopera, Elie, Clova Bay; and Picton to Port Gore.
Bookings can be made with the Marlborough i-SITE by phoning 0800 777 181 or directly with Pelorus Air. Go to:
For coordinated bookings for multi-stop, multi-location or multi-companies, and for alignment to some transport services, contact the Marlborough i-SITE: 0800 777 181 or email:
For more details go to:
Community visits and meetings
With the Government’s traffic light system in place from December 3, the Council and the Marlborough Roads Recovery Team (MRRT) are now able to gather with the Kenepuru Sound community.
Two meetings are planned for Tuesday 7 December – one at the Portage Resort Hotel and a second at the Waitaria Bay School Hall. This will be attended by representatives from the Council including councillors and key recovery staff as well as members of the MRRT.
“This will be our first opportunity to gather with the community in a formal way since the event due to the Covid alert level restrictions. We know that has been a source of frustration for those affected and we are looking forward to finally getting the chance to rub elbows with everyone and chat through the progress to date, address any issues and answer questions,” said Mr Heiford.
Details of times will be confirmed with the community soon.
The Council’s July Storm Navigator Charlotte Wood also visited Waitaria Bay last week as part of the Marlborough Primary Health (PHO) pop up clinic enabling Sounds’ residents to get their Covid vaccination.
Mrs Wood met with residents to talk about the impact of the storm and also delivered a care package from Blenheim Lions to the school. “It was my absolute privilege to meet locals at Waitaria Bay School last Friday. Thank you everyone for the very warm welcome,” she said.
The trip had given her an insight into the situation the residents have been living with since the July storm, she said. “I have been impressed by people’s positive mental attitude in dealing with the difficulties they continue to face and by the strength of the community spirit.”
“I’d like to remind everyone that it’s ok to reach out to me for advice, assistance or simply for a chat. Call or text 027 213 0341 and I give you a call back. It’s my job to listen and navigate people in the right direction for support.”
Mrs Wood said she was delighted to be able to deliver a gift to the school on behalf of Blenheim Lions. “People want to help, but often don’t know how to, so it was my pleasure to be able to act as courier,” she said.
With Christmas fast approaching, the MRRT has advised that roading repair work in the Marlborough Sounds will stop over the Christmas period, from 23 December 2021 to 16 January 2022, to give crews a well-earned break and allow them to spend time with their families.
The Marlborough Roads office is closed for two weeks over Christmas. If you need an access pass, you can apply for it before Monday 20 December 2021, or after Monday 10 January. Resident and Essential Service Passes with an expiry date of 31 December 2021 will automatically roll over without the need to renew them.
MRRT are expecting an increase in permitted resident traffic into Controlled Access areas over this period, so traffic will be able to flow more freely if work is stopped during this time. There will be no access into Controlled Access areas without a Resident or Essential Service Pass and no Public Access into these areas. Please refer to MRRT’s access definitions for more information.
Anyone who needs support as a result of the July storm should contact the Council at firstname.lastname@example.org
For the latest project updates from the Marlborough Roads Recovery Team go to the dedicated page for the roading recovery here:
For the latest road status before you start your journey, please visit the Marlborough Emergency Management Official Public Information Map:
To stay up to date on the latest roading alerts, go to:
For Resident or Essential Service Pass information go to: