Bach must go but owner philosophical

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It has been the centre of family gatherings for 20 years but all that is about to come to an end.
Warren Hull will say goodbye to his bach in September as a change of land ownership will result in the land his humble abode sits on being used for farming purposes.
Mr Hull bought the bach in 1996 along with a verbal lease. The land was sold this month and he has to be out by September.
Mr Hull and two other leaseholders met the new landowner this month and were told about the proposed change of land use.
‘‘We always knew this could happen and are resigned to the baches’ fate.’’
Mr Hull said he thought his bach was made up of three single men’s quarters from the Tekapo A power scheme, which were moved to the site nearly 60 years ago.
He had spent every Christmas and New Year at the bach with his family, including three children and four grandchildren.
‘‘The good thing is you come out here and you can do what you like.’’
Along with two neighbouring baches, everyone was ‘‘one big crowd’’, he said.
‘‘We had trap shooting, hangis, motorbikes . . .there were plenty of peas, corn and spuds in the fields as well.’’
Mr Hull said there were no hard feelings about the property changing hands and negotiations with the new owner had been smooth.
‘‘With a new type of irrigator these baches will be in the way. They have to be removed.’’
Mr Hull said anyone who was prepared to split up his bach and take it away was welcome to it, free of charge.
‘‘I would rather someone got a bit of enjoyment out of it. I recladded the front of it and there is a new roof on it.
‘‘If anyone can take it to bits then they can have it.’’
Nearing retirement, Mr Hull said he was lucky to have had some great years and shared so many memories in the bach.
‘‘At this stage in life I am better off to let it go.
‘‘The farmer has offered to help us out with a lot of the work.
‘‘I do think the story with the old Kiwi bach is they are becoming a thing of the past. A lot were built on public and reserve land.
‘‘I think health and safety has also been an influencing factor in the changes.
‘‘If you have people on your property, you have to keep an eye on them. If anything happens, you can be liable.’’
Neighbouring bach owner Grahame Duncombe, who bought his bach in 1999, said he was gutted but accepted the situation was inevitable.
‘‘It’s one of those things,’’ Mr Duncombe said.
‘‘The land has changed hands. The new owners are really good, they have been really helpful and there is nothing much we can do about it.
‘‘Onwards and upwards. We just have to treasure the memories.’’ – Mr Hull asked anyone interested in his bach to email him at wazdot@gmail.com