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Blenheim’s newest park is to be named Davidson Place in honour of Marlborough’s only female mayor Liz Davidson.
Councillor Terry Sloan, Mrs Liz Davidson and Mayor Alistair Sowman.
Mrs Davidson was elected to what was then known as the Blenheim Borough Council in 1983, serving a total of 28 years on the Council. She was Marlborough mayor from 1995 to 1998.
A firm believer in public recreational facilities and healthy lifestyles, Mrs Davidson was a strong advocate of civic amenities like cycleways and walkways. She was an early backer of the Wither Hills and the Taylor River walkways and a key supporter of the Stadium 2000 complex.
A member of Marlborough’s various hospital boards and area health boards during the 1980s and 90s, she was also a founding member of the Women’s Refuge movement and a supporter of various drug and alcohol recovery programmes.
CBD Councillor Sloan says the redesigned park is intended to provide a family-friendly spot close to the retail area that will also double as a market and events venue.
“The park will be laid out in a way that lends itself to performances; with controlled lighting and a stage area. With movable bollards, it will also be easy to double the size of the park area and open up the space through to Market Place. It will create a far more user-friendly public space than currently exists,” he said.
Councillor Sloan says it’s important that people see the park as one component of a far larger picture.
“This park is just the first step of a major upgrade of the CBD that will be completed over the next 10 to 15 years as part of the town’s Urban Design Strategy. It may be difficult for some people to imagine how the town is going to look by 2025 but Davidson Place is going to be a key element of our future townscape.”
It’s hoped the new park will be completed by early December although that will depend on the weather.