I don’t know why Titirangi property owners couldn’t have incorporated their 500-year old kauri tree in the design for their new two-house subdivision, when back in March their tree became a minor cause celebre. But they didn’t, and that was their business. [CORRECTION: Tree is variously estimated at between 100 to 200 years old. Newstalk ZB’s Rudd Kleinpaste suggests just 80 years old.]
Still: “Lots of people want this 500 year old Kauri tree protected.” said Stephen Berry at the time. “Should be easy to put some funds together so they can buy the tree.”
Turns out part of the agreement that saved the tree was that neighbours were going to buy the land on which the tree stands. They were going to: they agreed to, they contracted to, but they never did. So, since no one fronted up and their resource consents were all in order, the current tree-owners started up this week again on their plans, which seem to begin with removing their tree.
That, however, is not the way the story is being reported on social media. The villains of their story are the people who still own the tree.
“Broken promise” yell the neighbours.
“They lied” croaks Idiot-Savant, never one to waver at misreporting the news.
“Doublecross” cries David Cunliffe.
Naturally, they’re talking about the tree-owners who’ve been let down, not the protestors who’ve welched on a deal. (“Auckland arsehole” says an unhinged Idiot. And these are only the first few felches of fashionable factional dissent to folk doing what they wish on their own land.)
And, far worse, the tree-owners now have this threat hanging over their heads:
You can only feel sympathy for them.