Monthly Archives: July 2015

31 July, 2015: Springbuck on The Golf Estate

In this Issue

Springbuck on the Clarens Golf Estate;
Clarens Toursim Forum Report Back;
Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve;
Guided Hiking Tours;
Clarens Recycling Centre;
Fermenting Workshop- a Comprehensive look into Fermented Food and Beverages & Digestive Health;
Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis – Report Back;
It is time to plant fruit trees  (Reminder);
Maluti Radio – Listen Live;
EVENTS:;
Classifieds;
Contact us

Springbuck on the Clarens Golf Estate

13 Springbuck (1 ram and 12 ewes) were introduced to the Clarens Golf Estate on Wednesday.  And they are beautiful! Francois Schoeman the estate manager told Clarens News that aesthetics is the main reason for introducing the springbuck, and The Clarens Golf Estate is now the only 18-hole golf estate in the Eastern Freestate that offers golfers a bit of game viewing as they make their way around the course.   The springbuck are part of the Beukes Wildlife breeding program, and it is hoped that another 8 will be introduced towards the end of September.  Mrs Beukes however informed Clarens News, that it all depends on how well they settle in.   It seems that moving game is a tricky business and a lot of care is taken to ensure that animals adapt well to their new environment.  Hopefully all will go well, and these new residents will flourish in their new home.


 

Clarens Toursim Forum Report Back

The CTF held its AGM on Tuesday 28th July 2015 at Mont d’Or Hotel.   A new committee has been elected and they have a lot planned for the next year, including the Getaway Show, as well as a Market Research Survey.   (And since the last one was done in 2010 this is probably well overdue.)   Click here to read the full report.


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Article and photography by  Damien Coulson
Head ranger:  Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts.

This week we’ll be looking at another member of the rather large Asteraceae (Daizy) family.

Helichrysum adenocarpum subsp. adenocarpum (Pink Strawflower in English, Pienksewejaartjie in Afrikaans and senkotoana in Sesotho) is a perennial herb, and occurs often in a reclining position, but may also be erect. The distributed is widespread from the Eastern Cape – Zim. This everlasting species is found in grassveld regions in close proximity to, or on moist slopes. It is a hardy species, as it tolerates both frost and drought and grows even at altitudes as high as 3000m A.S.L.

The specimen photographed was observed along the margins of the Porcupine trail, and was made even more eye-catching by the general dearth of other flowering plants in the vicinity in comparison to the almost iridescent pink-white sepals of this wildflower.  Read more

 


Guided Hiking Tours

The Clarens Village Nature Reserve rangers offer guided tours.   And since the rangers know and patrol every square inch of the Reserve and are responsible for maintaining the trails and keeping the Nature Reserve as beautiful and well-maintained as it is, I can’t think of anyone better to go with.   (You can read about the work they do in the monthly CVC reports on the Clarens News website:http://clarensnews.co.za/clarens-village-nature-reserve/   )


Clarens Recycling Centre

A very big THANK YOU to everyone who contributed towards the repair of the bailing machine.  We are happy to report that the bailing machine is back at the recycling centre and working well.   THANK YOU.  THANK YOU. THANK YOU.

Click here to find out more about the Clarens Recycling Centre


Fermenting Workshop- a Comprehensive look into Fermented Food and Beverages & Digestive Health

Deborah Sutherland is planning to visit Clarens in mid-September to run a 3-day Fermenting Workshop.   The workshop is structured so that all aspects of fermenting foods, beverages, condiments, nut and seed cheese’s may be covered. The history of fermented foods; why fermented foods and beverages are so important in gut health; understanding the digestive system; understanding the plant kingdom and our inter-relationship with one another…. Therefore understanding the true meaning of what health is about.   Deborah has recently held a workshop at Oaklands Manor  and the Clarens course will follow the same structure: Click here to see the program.
Should you be interested please contact Colleen:  colleenmc@mweb.co.za
To learn more about Deborah Sutherland and her workshops visit her facebook page


 

Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis – Report Back

Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis in Bethlehem has finally received their grant, so the crisis is over for the moment.   (What a relief.!)   They are managing well, but could, of course, always do with a little extra, especially Bovril, sandwich spread, fish paste, spices & dried herbs,( cinnamon, chicken spice, BBQ spice, thyme, pepper)  baking powder, bicarb, Maizena, sugar, margarine, tomato puree, mayonnaise, chutney, yeast, vinegar, pilchards in tomato sauce, tinned bully beef, fish fingers, meat patties, vinegar,Handy Andy, black bags. and personal hygiene products.

For further information call Margaret on 058 307 3708.

If you want to make a cash contribution, the banking details are C Theron Kinderhuis, ABSA 0770230101, branch code 632005.


It is time to plant fruit trees  (Reminder)

The Clarens winter may be harsh for some …..but it is peak trading season for De Leeuw Fruit Tree Nursery just outside Clarens. During the coldest months thousands of carefully cultivated, two-year old deciduous fruit trees are lifted from the field. The trees are sold to retail nurseries, small fruit growers, government departments and to individuals who just like picking fresh fruit off their own trees in the backyard.
The nursery which is situated about 10 km outside Clarens was started by Jim and Flos de Leeuw more than 80 years ago.  Their vision was to make fruit trees available to as many people as possible at affordable prices. Three generations later the vision continues with trees now supplied as far afield as Mpumalanga and KZN and exported to Swaziland and Lesotho.
Jimmy de Leeuw was one of the early headmasters at Clarens Primary School. He started planting peach pips as a hobby and initially gave the trees as gifts to friends and acquaintance. Florence Johnson, originally his colleague at the school, later became his wife. She initiated the importing of cultivars from overseas for grafting purposes. Florence (or Flos) de Leeuw later became the mayor of Clarens – apparently she was the first female mayor in the Free State – quite a feat for the village at the time! Read More


Maluti Radio – Listen Live

Click onto http://www.radiomaluti.co.za/gallery.html

To see the program schedule click here 


EVENTS:

Click  onto the links to learn more.
For more upcoming events visit the Clarens News website:   www.clarensnews.co.za

5th August, 2015


7-10 August. 2015
Rosendal Winterfees

 

 

 

11th August 2015
Police Forum and SAPS Update
NG Church Hall:  4pm

 

 

 

 

 

19th August 2015
CRA – CVC – CFA Important Meeting

 

 

 

 

 

28-30 August 2015
Getaway Show
G
et your brochures ready!

 

 

Classifieds

PLEASE NOTE THAT SR. ANTOINETTE EARLE OF PABALLO’S NURSING CARE @ CLARENS IS AVAILABLE FOR A NIGHT NURSING POSITION FROM AUGUST 2015.  PLEASE CONTACT SR. ANTOINETTE ON 083 236 1293

Dihlabeng Christian School in Clarens, requires a Grade RR (3,4,5 year olds) teacher with an ECD qualification for the month of September 2015.
Please send CV, qualifications and 2 recent contactable references by 31 July to: The Principal –dihlabengschool@intekom.co.za
Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website: there is also an employment opportunity for someone in Real Estate,  property for sale…….etc.etc.
Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.


 

Contact us

email:  editor@clarensnews.co.za

Helichrysum adenocarpum

Helichrysum 1 Hlichrysum 2

This week we’ll be looking at another member of the rather large Asteraceae (Daizy) family.

Helichrysum adenocarpum subsp. adenocarpum (Pink Strawflower in English, Pienksewejaartjie in Afrikaans and senkotoana in Sesotho) is a perennial herb, and occurs often in a reclining position, but may also be erect. The distributed is widespread from the Eastern Cape – Zim. This everlasting species is found in grassveld regions in close proximity to, or on moist slopes. It is a hardy species, as it tolerates both frost and drought and grows even at altitudes as high as 3000m A.S.L.

The specimen photographed was observed along the margins of the Porcupine trail, and was made even more eye-catching by the general dearth of other flowering plants in the vicinity in comparison to the almost iridescent pink-white sepals of this wildflower.

The flowers of H. adenocarpum subsp. adenocarpum occur as solitary flowerheads, appearing as glossy pink orbs atop grey-green and wooly flowering stalks of between 40-450mm in length. The leaves of this species are rounded and semi-cylindrical, measuring 30X20mm. The flowerheads (25-35mm when open) appear almost glossy pink-white under bright sunlight. Additional flowering stems may arise from the side of existing flowerheads. Flowering usually takes place over a good 9 months of the year from January right through to September. Uses:

Medicinal

This attractive everlasting has reportedly been used in traditional medicines to treat diarrhoea as well as vomiting, and is more commonly used on children.

Gardening

This species makes for a great garden plant, on account of it being both hardy to the elements as well as being visually pleasing.

Conservation status

Helichrysum adenocarpum subsp. adenocarpum is listed as of Least Concern by SANBI.

 

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

17th July, 2015: Let’s Go Hiking

In this Issue

Let’s Go Hiking: Clarens Village Nature Reserve
Guided Hiking Tours
CVC Report – Back
Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve
It is time to plant fruit trees
SAPS Update
Clarens Recycling Centre – Let’s keep it going
Dihlabeng Christian Church
Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis- You can Help
Maluti Radio – Listen Live
EVENTS:
Classifieds
Contact us


Let’s Go Hiking: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Whether you’re looking for a fun outing for the whole family or an adventurous hike to get your blood flowing, the Clarens Village Nature Reserve has a lot to offer.   What’s more – it borders the town, so you don’t need to drive anywhere before you put your hiking boots on.   The Clarens Village Conservancy has just brought out an informative and descriptive map of the Hiking Trails, as well as three highly recommended, carefully designed hiking routes.  (A big thanks goes to Richard Rennie jnr. who spent hours on the lay-out and map design.)  The maps are available from various outlets including The Old Stone Bottle Store, Protea Hotel, Mountain Odyssey, Clarens Xtreme, On The Square Gallery, Gosto, Patcham Place, and The Clarens Country House, and cost only R25 each.   (All proceeds to go to The Clarens Village Conservancy which manages the The Clarens Village Nature Reserve.)


Guided Hiking Tours

The Clarens Village Nature Reserve rangers offer guided tours.   And since the rangers know and patrol every square inch of the Reserve and are responsible for maintaining the trails and keeping the Nature Reserve as beautiful and well-maintained as it is, I can’t think of anyone better to go with.   (You can read about the work they do in the monthly CVC reports on the Clarens News website:http://clarensnews.co.za/clarens-village-nature-reserve/   )   The June Report-back follows:


 

 

CVC Report – Back


Read more


Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Article and photography by  Damien Coulson
Head ranger:  Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’ll be looking at a member of the rather large Asteraceae (Daizy) family.

Gazania krebsiana Less. subsp. serrulata (Common Gazania in English, Bruingousblom in Afrikaans and shoeshoe in Sesotho) is a perennial herb, distributed from the Western Cape – Mpum. Don’t let its’ diminutive size fool you though – this tough little guy can survive tough high-altitude winter and summer conditions at up to 3000m A.S.L.

The specimen photographed was observed recently on the Kloof Mountain trail. This find was lucky as usually the rocky grassland plateau is heavily grazed by cattle (for whom the flower is a delicacy).  Read more


 

It is time to plant fruit trees

The Clarens winter may be harsh for some …..but it is peak trading season for De Leeuw Fruit Tree Nursery just outside Clarens. During the coldest months thousands of carefully cultivated, two-year old deciduous fruit trees are lifted from the field. The trees are sold to retail nurseries, small fruit growers, government departments and to individuals who just like picking fresh fruit off their own trees in the backyard.
The nursery which is situated about 10 km outside Clarens was started by Jim and Flos de Leeuw more than 80 years ago.  Their vision was to make fruit trees available to as many people as possible at affordable prices. Three generations later the vision continues with trees now supplied as far afield as Mpumalanga and KZN and exported to Swaziland and Lesotho.
Jimmy de Leeuw was one of the early headmasters at Clarens Primary School. He started planting peach pips as a hobby and initially gave the trees as gifts to friends and acquaintance. Florence Johnson, originally his colleague at the school, later became his wife. She initiated the importing of cultivars from overseas for grafting purposes. Florence (or Flos) de Leeuw later became the mayor of Clarens – apparently she was the first female mayor in the Free State – quite a feat for the village at the time! Read More


 

SAPS Update

Clarens Police Station: The leading station in the district

Crime is at an absolute low this month; the Clarens Police are determined to keep the Village safe for villagers and tourist’s – Lt Botha is extremely proud of her unit and the fantastic effort of her police officers.
Other than keeping the Village safe for its inhabitants and visitors, the Clarens Police will during the month of August –Women’s Month- educate the community on general safety, issues like abuse, and how to seek help  –  Lt Botha is open to suggestions should villagers have any topics or issues they would like the police to address.
If you notice any suspicious behaviour, persons, or witness any sort of crime kindly contact the police immediately. Charge office – 058 256 6000/1/2 or Officer on duty – 082 466 8904
The Police Forum will meet again on 11 August 2015 at 16h00 in the NG Church Hall.


 

 

Clarens Recycling Centre – Let’s keep it going

I’m sure that every Clarens resident is familiar with Evon’s bakkie and trailer picking up the town’s recycling materials, and that we all agree that she makes A HUGE CONTRIBUTION to our town.   We really need to keep this project going, and the time has come for all Clarens citizens to step up and show their support.

Click here to find out more about the Clarens Recycling Centre


Dihlabeng Christian Church

Dihlabeng Christian Church is a community church in Clarens which, not only serves as a place of worship, but also facilitates various outreach programmes within the community; these outreaches aim to uplift the people of Kgubetswana spiritually, emotionally, and economically.   Two of these programmes are specifically geared toward the children of Kgubetswana – an annual ‘Holiday Club’ in the June/July school holidays, and the Nnete Foundation which is set to open its doors in September 2015.

HOLIDAY CLUB
‘Holiday Club’ is a week-long programme presented by Dihlabeng Christian Church, Clarens together with Jubilee Community Church, Observatory (Cape Town) – they invite children from the community to participate in games, singing and dancing, and a dramatised message from the Bible.
‘Holiday Club’ is a two hour programme that runs for the first week in July – the idea behind it is to introduce the Gospel to children by way of games, praise and worship, and visual storytelling.  Churches such as Dihlabeng and Jubilee run community programmes (like ‘Holiday Club’) to incur positive change in the lives of children, teenagers, and adults by creating spheres of encouragement and “life-sharing” in their respective communities.

NNETE FOUNDATION
The Nnete Foudation is a Non Profit Organisation supported by the Dihlabeng Christian Church – set to open its doors in Kgubetswana in September; the organisation aims to empower children within the community through educational support.
One of the biggest challenges within the community is that children are not furthering their education, they have little to no support with schoolwork at home – due to the legacy of the previous schooling system – and even top students’ marks are not good enough for university acceptance.  Thus, without proper education, support, and opportunity the cycle of poverty is perpetuated.
The Nnete Foundation alongside Clarens Combined High School will identify twenty to thirty Grade 8 and 9 learners – who don’t have the necessary educational support at home – and assist them with homework et cetera. The Foundation aims to build a relationship with these children and create a sustainable system of support which will carry them through the remainder of their schooling.
Preparing children for tertiary education is one of the main focuses of the Foundation and children will be assisted in finding university placement and most importantly – bursaries.
The vision is to curb the poverty cycle and to see the community of Kgubetswana prosper.

Clarenites are encouraged to “get involved!” The foundation will need study material, text books and volunteers to assist the children with general homework, English et cetera.
Should you wish to offer your time, resources, or both to the Foundation: contact Pastor Gareth Oosthyzen at the Church Office on 058 256 1693.

Dihlabeng Christian Church currently hosts the following community programmes:
Orphans and Vulnerable Children Support on Wednesdays: They work with 40+ children within the community
Silver Hope on Thursdays: A weekly morning meeting for the elderly.
Youth on Saturdays:  Programme run for teenagers from 16h30
 Church service on Sundays: 09h30 – 11h30
For further details contact the Church on 058 256 1693 or see their Facebook page:https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dihlabeng-Christian-Church/112211652202312?fref=ts

Article and Research:  Danielle Visser


Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis- You can Help

As you probably know the Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis in Bethlehem is in dire need of help, and it is in this connection that we received the following letter from Val Basson:

Bethlehem Christian Centre is the church I attend, and they are actively involved in supporting this worthy cause.The home has given us a list of urgent needs, which I enclose. Church office: Louise:  058 303 4604/ 033I am prepared to be the collection point (or to collect) here in Clarens, and will take any donations through to Bethlehem for distribution.I live on the corner of Horeb and Larola Streets (old no. 1, now no. 31) and can be contacted on 0835664429 or landline 1547. There is usually somebody at home. Bovril, sandwich spread, fish paste, spices & dried herbs,( cinnamon, chicken spice, BBQ spice, thyme, pepper)  baking powder, bicarb, Maizena, sugar, margarine, tomato puree, mayonnaise, chutney, yeast, vinegar, pilchards in tomato sauce, tinned bully beef, fish fingers, meat patties, vinegar,Handy Andy, black bags. And maybe some personal hygiene products – soap, tooth paste, sanitary towels?Even one item can make a difference, but a whole case would be better! Raid those pantry shelves, or add an item or 2 to your trolley when you shop.

Many thanks.
Val Basson

The Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis / Charlotte Theron Orphanage in Bethlehem has not received their Government grant for some time. They are in a dire situation unable to feed and care for the children,  and are  appealing for assistance.They house 120 orphans and children whose parent can no longer care for them. The children range from tiny babies to 16 year olds, from all the race groups in SA. The appeal is for donations of either money or necessities such as bread, toiletries, toilet paper, etc. Farmers have donated meat, potatoes and maize.   If you have goods you would like to donate, they can collate a collection out of Clarens.

If you want more information you can call Margaret on 058 307 3708.

If you want to make a cash contribution, the banking details are C Theron Kinderhuis, ABSA 0770230101, branch code 632005.


Maluti Radio – Listen Live

Click onto http://www.radiomaluti.co.za/gallery.html

To see the program schedule click here 


EVENTS:

Click  onto the links to learn more.
For more upcoming events visit the Clarens News website:   www.clarensnews.co.za

14-17 July, 2015
10th Clarens Quilt Festival
18th July, 2015
Nelson Mandela DayPlease let us know what you’re doing on this very special day for our facebook page.
18th July, 2015
Clive Scott at Rosendal
25th July, 2015
Maloi Hess Blues in Rosendal

Classifieds

Dihlabeng Christian School in Clarens, requires a Grade RR (3,4,5 year olds) teacher with an ECD qualification for the month of September 2015.
Please send CV, qualifications and 2 recent contactable references by 31 July to: The Principal –dihlabengschool@intekom.co.za
Remember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website: there is also an employment opportunity for someone in Real Estate,  property for sale…….etc.etc.
Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.

Contact us

email:  editor@clarensnews.co.za

Gazania krebsiana

Gazania krebsiana Gazania krebsiana 2

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’ll be looking at a member of the rather large Asteraceae (Daizy) family.

Gazania krebsiana Less. subsp. serrulata (Common Gazania in English, Bruingousblom in Afrikaans and shoeshoe in Sesotho) is a perennial herb, distributed from the Western Cape – Mpum. Don’t let its’ diminutive size fool you though – this tough little guy can survive tough high-altitude winter and summer conditions at up to 3000m A.S.L.

The specimen photographed was observed recently on the Kloof Mountain trail. This find was lucky as usually the rocky grassland plateau is heavily grazed by cattle (for whom the flower is a delicacy).

The leaves of the Common Gazania are lanceolate measuring around 150X4mm, and the margins are sparesly hairy and rolled under, with an off-white midrib; dark/khaki-green above and grey-green below. A milky latex may be exuded when the leaves are damaged. The inflorescense is bourne aloft a stem of 100-120mm. The flowerheads (30-50mm) are mostly solitary, often with a few others in close proximity to the parent plant. The ray-florets are a butter-canary yellow. Some variants my even appear orange-red with dark spots at the base of the rays. Flowering usually occurs from Spring-mid summer; although this specimen was observed in early July (possibly as a result of warmer than usual winter tempretures and slightly elevated winter-rainfall). Uses:

Medicinal

Decoctions and infusions from several species of the Gazania genus may be used as analgesics to reduce pain in patients.

Traditional

Eaten raw by herdsmen and cattle alike as a source of nourishment and moisture. The felt/fine hairs on the underside of the leaves was rolled into twine to make skirts for rite-of-passage ceremonies. This was a painstakingly slow (and therefore costly) process as very small quantities of twine could be collected from each leave at a time. It makes sense then that these skirts were of high value to the Sesotho, and usually passed down from generation to generation until new skirts were required.

Gardening

The resilience and widespread distribution of this plant has made it a popular choice for gardens, with numerous cultivars having been produced over the last 60 odd years.

Conservation status

Gazania krebsiana Less. subsp. serrulata is listed as of Least Concern by SANBI.

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

3rd July, 2015: Interesting and Informative

In this Issue

Important information for those planning to visit Lesotho;
IS OUR POST OFFICE IN TROUBLE?;
SAPS Update on recent events in Clarens;
SANParks’ Kudu Green Schools at Golden Gate;
Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve;
Clarens Ratepayers Association;
Maluti Radio – Listen Live;
Winter fires = Winter Ash;
Proposed development of a Dinosaur Interpretation Centre;
Children in Need – You can Help;
EVENTS:;
Classifieds;
Contact us.


 

Important information for those planning to visit Lesotho

As you can see from the photograph above, (sent in by Damien Coulson) Afriski has had quite a lot of snow, and the slopes are looking good.  BUT, if you’re planning to take the kids (anyone under the age of 18)  please be aware that their unabridged birth certificates are now a requirement  – even if they are travelling on their own passports!   News from Afriski and Maluti Tours is that this new law (brought in on the 1st June) has already led to massive cancellations – mainly on account of the fact that it takes so long to get the right paperwork.   Afriski is really worth a visit, but if you want to take the youngsters start getting the paperwork organized as soon as possible.
Click here for further information on visiting Lesotho as well as tours from Clarens to Lesotho
Click here for further information on driving to Afriski


 

IS OUR POST OFFICE IN TROUBLE?

The South African Post Office (Sapo) has been under intense scrutiny and pressure the last few months due to the 2014 postal strikes, delayed payment of suppliers, and rumours of bankruptcy.
In May the Sapo Administration presented before parliament the SA Post Office Corporate Strategic Plan 2015/2016 – 2017/2018 (Turnaround plan) which proposes a R7.4bn ‘financial improvement’ by 2017/2018 – allowing only three years for financial recovery and profit increase after incurring an approximate loss of  R1.6bn during the 2014 postal strike.  The Sapo Administrator stated in a press release (6 May 2015) that Sapo plan to reach their target by – amongst other strategies – reducing jobs and closing various post offices in South Africa.
The Clarens Post Office (CPO) is rumoured to be one of the many post offices that will close down in the attempt to rescue Sapo from collapse. The CPO’s rent, according to Bruce Marx, has fallen two months in arrears; it is uncertain whether they plan on settling their account – Bruce has not yet received confirmation on whether CPO will continue their lease or terminate.
At this point in time the fate of the CPO remains only hear-say; neither the Postmasters from Clarens, Bethlehem or Central- can confirm that Clarens will lose its post office. The contact persons from the Sapo media offices remain unreachable.
Read more:
http://www.fin24.com/Tech/Companies/Post-Office-in-the-black-by-2017-20150510
https://www.postoffice.co.za/group/pressreleases/2015/turnaroundplancompleted.html
https://www.postoffice.co.za/group/pressreleases/2015/rebalancingbranches.html

Article and research:  Danielle Visser


 

SAPS Update on recent events in Clarens

After chatting to Lt Botha on the phone, I couldn’t help but feel reassured that Clarens is in safe hands and Clarens will continue to enjoy it’s reputation as a relatively crime-free zone.
We do, of course, have incidents but our SAPS, together with our local residents ensure that criminals and trouble-makers are soon apprehended and brought under control.   A good example of this is how they dealt with 3 armed robbers who decided to rob one of the shops in Kgubetswana on 15th June   With the help of Kgubetswana residents who refused to be intimidated, informed the SAPS and then worked closely with the SAPS, two of the robbers were arrested and taken into custody.  (Well done and a big thank you to all the Kgubetswana residents who play such a vital role in keeping Clarens safe.) The third one unfortunately managed to escape and it is believed he is now in Lesotho.  Lt Botha informed me that that the SAPS special unit in Bethlehem is carrying out further investigations as it is believed that there may be a link between these criminals and the recent car thefts in Clarens.   And – on the subject of the car thefts – Lt Botha has appealed to all residents to stay vigilant and to warn all Toyota visiting Clarens that they need to do everything possible to keep their vehicles safe.   The same applies to visitors to The Golden Gate as it seems that the car thieves have now turned their attention away from Clarens (for the time-being anyway) to The Golden Gate where 5 Toyatas were stolen last month.

Lt Botha has also given Clarens News permission to publish her cell phone number:   082 4197094.    All residents are invited to make a note of her number, and to report any incidents or concerns directly to her.

Remember that everyone is invited to meet Lt Botha Tuesday 9 July, at 16h00, at the NG Church Hall.  Now that she has settled in, Lt Botha is keen to meet the residents of Clarens and get to know those she serves.  You are encouraged to attend and bring along your friends and neighbours.   If you have concerns about safety, security or general issues in the village, this is your chance to share them with Lt Botha and your fellow citizens.


 

SANParks’ Kudu Green Schools at Golden Gate


This past Saturday saw approximately 60 students from 13 Gauteng based schools engage in SANParks’ Kudu Green Schools Initiative. Several additional organisations including The Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (GDARD) and Rand Water Foundation (RWF), were also invited to attend and share knowledge of an environmental nature with the students – for many of which was most likely a first-in-a-lifetime event.
The students selected for the 3-day programme (Friday 26th – Sunday 28th) based at Golden Gate’s Enviro-Centre, were chosen from a select few involved in environmental clubs and extramural activities within their respective schools. The intention was to impart to the students a sense of the environment and its relation with mankind; development and limited natural resources. This was developed to be both fun and informal as outings to the Basotho Cultural Village; outdoor hikes of Golden Gate; Abseiling and not to mention horse-rides, but also involved a more structured educational aspect in the form of enviro-games and activities.  Read more


 

Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Article and photography by  Damien Coulson
Head ranger:  Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

 

Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’ll be looking at a member of the Ericaceae (Erica) family.

Erica cerinthoides L. var. cerinthoides (Red Hairy/Fire Heath in English, Rooihaartjie in Afrikaans and semomonyane in Sesotho) is more commonly associated with the Fynbos biome of the SW Cape where it occurs alongside other species of the Proteaceae and Restoniaceae; however the distribution of this particular species extends as far as Mpumalanga at altitudes of up to 2300 m A.S.L., and is the most widely distributed Erica in the country. This highly distinctive species of Erica grows to around 500mm but may occasionally form an elongated shrub of up to 900-1200mm.   Read more


 

Clarens Ratepayers Association

The Clarens Ratepayers Association held their AGM on 24th June, 2015.  The association is calling for volunteers from the Clarens community to serve on the Committee.  Both Pat and Ralph Raubenheimer as well as Rodney Wainwright and Santi Meintjies have stepped down and will no longer be serving on the committee. Since Clarens is a growing town and faces many challenges every Clarens resident needs to take this appeal seriously.   Click here to read the AGM Minutes and to find out more about the work of the CRA.


 

Maluti Radio – Listen Live

Click onto http://www.radiomaluti.co.za/gallery.html


 

Winter fires = Winter Ash

Now that the cold nights are upon us, I’m sure that many of us are staying warm by burning wood in our winter stoves or fireplaces.   (And even if you’re not doing it to stay warm, I can’t think of a more romantic way to spend a winter  evening – accompanied with a glass or two of red wine, of course.)   The only down side is that you are faced with ash to clean up the next morning.   So what should you be doing with this ash.   Well – you could make lye and return to doing your laundry the old fashioned way.

Seriously?   No – we’re not really suggesting that.   Here are a few (more sensible) suggestions:  Read more


 

Proposed development of a Dinosaur Interpretation Centre

Proposed development of a Dinosaur Interpretation Centre on the Remaining Extent and Portion 1 of the Farm Glen Reenen No. 1361 within Golden Gate Highlands National Park, Bethlehem, Free State Province.
Notice is hereby given, in terms of the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998) (NEMA) EIA Regulations of 2014, that SANParks (the
Proponent) is proposing the above mentioned Project. The intended development shall trigger the following listed activities: Activity 12 of Government Notice No. R983 of 4 December 2014 (Listing Notice 1) and Activity 14 of Government Notice No. R985 of 4 December 2014 (Listing Notice 3). The date of placement of this notice is  4 June 2015. Queries regarding this matter must be referred to: The Environmental Consultant, Enviroworks, Suite 116, Private Bag X01, Brandhof, 9324 or contact Adél Groenewald  at Tel: 051 436 0793, Fax: 051 436 0791 or Email: adel@enviroworks.co.za.
Parties wishing to formally register as an I&AP are requested to forward their comments (and contact details) to Enviroworks within 30 days of placement of this advertisement, which is on or before 8 July 2015.


 

Children in Need – You can Help

The Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis / Charlotte Theron Orphanage in Bethlehem has not received their Government grant for the last two months. They are in a dire situation unable to feed and care for the children,  and are  appealing for assistance.

They house 120 orphans and children whose parent can no longer care for them. The children range from tiny babies to 16 year olds, from all the race groups in SA.

The appeal is for donations of either money or necessities such as bread, toiletries, toilet paper, etc. Farmers have donated meat, potatoes and maize.   If you have goods you would like to donate, they can collate a collection out of Clarens.
If you want more information you can call Margaret on 058 307 3708.

If you want to make a cash contribution, the banking details are C Theron Kinderhuis, ABSA 0770230101, branch code 632005.

Artist’s Café and Mona Liza’s Garment Gallery are hosting Andre Swiegers on the 4th of July 2015 @18h30 for 19h00  with the Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis as the beneficiary .
Tickets are R100 pp . 50 tickets available will enable us to give CTK a donation of R5000 . We would love to see this cause well supported by our locals.
Please come get your tickets at the Artist’s Café. Regards Karen and Phoebe

 


EVENTS:

Click  onto the links to learn more.
For more upcoming events visit the Clarens News website:   www.clarensnews.co.za

 

 

4 July, 2015
Fouriesburg Polar Bear Plunge
Be Luney for Cluney
4th July, 2015
Andre Swiegers at Artists Cafe
in aid of Charlotte Theron Kinderhuis
4th July, 2015
Paul Roux Christmas in July
9th July, 2015
SAPS Station Commander to meet Clarens Residents
14-17 July, 2015
10th Clarens Quilt Festival
18th July, 2015Clive Scott at Rosendal
25th July, 2015Maloi Hess Blues in Rosendal

 

 


 

Classifieds

Restaurant, Guest House management for DecemberRemember to have a look at our Classifieds page on the website, especially if you’re looking for someone to house sit your guest house or restaurant, or space to rent.  There are also people wanting to make ontact with old friends.   (See…..We’re looking for…… on the classifieds page.)
Browse around – you’re bound to find something of interest.


 

Contact us

email:  editor@clarensnews.co.za

Erica cerinthoides

Erica cerinthoides 1

 

 

 

 

 

Erica cerinthoides Erica cerinthoides 2

 

Erica cerinthoides L. var. cerinthoides (Red Hairy/Fire Heath in English, Rooihaartjie in Afrikaans and semomonyane in Sesotho) is more commonly associated with the Fynbos biome of the SW Cape where it occurs alongside other species of the Proteaceae and Restoniaceae; however the distribution of this particular species extends as far as Mpumalanga at altitudes of up to 2300 m A.S.L., and is the most widely distributed Erica in the country. This highly distinctive species of Erica grows to around 500mm but may occasionally form an elongated shrub of up to 900-1200mm as shown above.Greetings to all our Village plant enthusiasts. Welcome to this weeks’ “bi-Weekly Plant of Interest”. This week we’ll be looking at a member of the Ericaceae (Erica) family.

The specimen photographed was observed on the Maluti View hiking trail on an island of soil in close proximity to a cliff of Clarens Formation Sandstone, from which it derives a modicum of shelter from the elements as well as moisture. Fynbos species such as E. cerinthoides, are usually adapted to grow on nutrient deficient and relatively shallow soils which is why this species is seen to occur so far from the Cape . Several Erica’s are also adapted to propagate following a fire which is another possible explanation of why this species would occur in the grassveld biome.

The leaves of this species are needlike and are very small (<5-15mm) in whorled clusters of 4-6 at nodes along the length of the stem.  The bright orange-red flowers are the most striking feature of the plant and are visible at a good distance in the grassveld. These are large (25-35mm), tubular – characteristic of flowers of the Ericeaea family – and velvetly hairy (hence the common name), occuring in apical clusters. Flowering depends to a degree on locality but generally occurs all-year-round.

 

Uses:

Traditional

Sucked by children and herdsmen in Lesotho as a form of natural candy.

Ecology

Erica’s are pollinated by sugarbirds and sunbirds, which thrive on the energy provided by the sweet nectar.

Conservation status

Cerinthoides L. var. cerinthoides is listed as of Least Concern by SANBI.

 

Click here for more information on plants in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here for more information on the Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger: Clarens Village Nature Reserve

 

Clarens Ratepayers Association AGM Minutes

CLARENS RATEPAYERS ASSOCIATION (CRA)

 

MINUTES

of the Annual General Meeting held at the Methodist Church Hall, Clarens on Wednesday June 24, 2015 at 16h30

 

Present from the CRA Executive Committee:

            Pat Raubenheimer (PR)                                           Rodney Wainwright (RJW)

Ralph Raubenheimer (RGR)                                   Santi Meintjies (SM)

Sjoerd de Boer (SDB)

 

Members of the Community: – As per attached Attendance Register.

 

The meeting opened at 16h30 and PR presented the following to those present.

 

  1. The current CRA team:

 

P Raubenheimer (Chairperson)               Rodney Wainwright (Vice Chairperson)

Ralph Raubenheimer (Treasurer)            Godfrey Allcock (Secretary)

Santi Meintjies                                        Sjoerd de Boer

Francois Schoeman

 

She reiterated that as had been stated in recent communications, Rodney, Ralph, Santi and she would not be standing for re-election and that volunteers were being sourced from the community.  To date, Chris Green had advised that he would be interested in joining the committee.

 

  1. What is CRA

PR explained that the CRA was a non-profit, voluntary association, formed to promote the rights and interests of residents with the purpose of ensuring an acceptable level of quality municipal services at an equitable cost and improvement of infrastructure.  The CRA worked with the Conservancy and Fire Associations with the aim of protecting the environment.  The CRA endeavoured to ensure that economic development was within the constraints of the infrastructural capacity of the Town and this involved engagement with Local, Provincial and Central Government.

  1. Key Area of Focus

The key areas of focus for CRA were Service Delivery – water & sewerage, roads, rubbish removal, village cleanliness, Municipal Accounting.  There was a 4/5 year check on valuations to ensure fairness across the board.  Experience had shown that when the new valuations are put forward, properties were missed and some incorrectly valued. CRA had input to the Spatial Development Framework, the Integrated Development Plan and to the Budget process.

  1. Achievements to date

The CRA have built good, productive relationships with previous Dihlabeng Municipal Managers (4 in all),  with the Chief Financial Officer, Raymond Provis, Pubic Works, Town Planning, Building Inspectors, Councillors and Local Unit Managers (3).  This allowed us to be consulted on matters mentioned above.  We also had input to the determination of rates over the years which allowed us to ensure equitable rates increases; we were now at a stage where other associations in Dihlabeng were also invited to participate.  PR advised the meeting that the Municipality’s Chief Financial Officer, Raymond Provis, with whom we had worked for many years, had resigned and would be leaving the next day.  Raymond had always been helpful to and supportive of ratepayers associations in general and Clarens in particular and his leaving and the fact that we still did not have a replacement for Peter Reed in the Clarens Unit, did not bode well for Clarens.

The CRA had successfully objected to the first pass of valuations in 2009 and 2013; ensure that the Golf Estate properties were correctly valued and reflected on the Municipal system.  A 50% reduction in sewerage rate charges had been negotiated for those village residents whose property had septic tanks and small bore pipes.  A reduction in property rates for pensioners had also been negotiated.  The CRA had input to and liaison with the Ward Committee; had at the request of the Municipality, worked with then and the Provincial Government to implement Street Numbering to ensure they were in line with other South African Towns and to effect easier location of properties by emergency services.  This project had started in 2006, but due to the numerous changes of personnel in both the Dihlabeng Municipality and the Provincial Department with whom we were dealing, this project had taken considerably longer than at first anticipated.  It was now completed and the new, sequential numbers had been appearing on the Dihlabeng Accounts since November 2014.  There was some push back on this from some Villagers, but over time the street numbering would be fully implemented.  Members of the CRA had been assisted with objections to certain property developments, but this assistance was only given when such objections were considered to be within reason and the development believed to be to the detriment of the Village.  At the request of certain residents who were adversely affected by the construction of the alterations to the Village School, CRA had secured representation on the Community Steering Committee, but unfortunately had not been involved from the inception of the project.  There were numerous complaints about the denuding of the site and the noise of the construction over weekends and late into the night.

CRA had covered the cost of the missing street signage in the Village as the Municipality had no money to cover this and had objected to the siting of the MTN 3G Mast behind the Museum; alternative sites had been put forward as we believed the Mast was necessary.

  1. Issues facing Clarens going forward:

PR reported that as mentioned previously, a replacement Municipal Manager had not been successfully appointed and that whilst someone had been appointed some months ago by the Municipality, the appointment had not been approved by Council and the incumbent had been suspended.  With regard to the appointment of a Clarens Unit Manager, the position was still vacant and the staff were endeavouring to carry on without direction; although Michael and Linda trying hard to keep things going.

With the increase in tourism and the additional dwellings built over recent years, Clarens’ water supply was under strain, more particularly when the Village was busy at the weekends, as had been experienced over Christmas 2015 when for 2 weeks the supply was intermittent.  Our water supply and quality has to be constantly monitored.

The promise of a new water treatment plant, which had appeared on the IDP, was not considered a priority by the Municipality – this had become evident at the Budget Meeting – as the Municipality did not have the funds to cover their portion of the costs.  PR explained that the majority of the funds for such a project would come from MIG.  However, MIG only funded projects for the previously disadvantaged and whilst they would pay say 75% towards this project, given that Kgubetswana residents would also benefit, the remaining 25% or so would have to be covered by the local Municipality.

The next property valuation process would start again in 2017 and would have to be reviewed, as would the annual rates increases to ensure fairness.  And, whilst a new township had been planned for a number of years behind Phahameng, providing 500 houses, no further information was available.

PR said that she and the outgoing Committee members felt that it was necessary to have a fully functioning Ratepayers Association.  Should the CRA be dissolved, then the assets would not be paid to members but would be transferred by donation to the Conservancy and Fire Associations as specified in the Constitution.  A discussion ensued with no volunteers coming forward.  RJW said that in terms of the Constitution, a minimum of 4 but no greater than 8 Committee members were required; with the addition of Chris Green, there were now 4.  Further discussion ensued and it was agreed that PR, SM, RJW, RGR would remain until the CVC AGM in two months’ time.  Until then, everyone was asked to canvas the community to find volunteers.

The meeting was advised that there were currently 306 paid up members, comprising 69 from the Village and 237 from the Estates.  Unfortunately, it had been our experience that the Village membership typically increased whenever there was a crisis, which was not an ideal situation.  The CRA Executive believed that the membership fee of R300 per annum, which afforded membership to the CRA, CVC and Fire Association, was not excessive, given the work done and the fact that it was carried out by volunteers.

  1. Financials:

A high level view of the financial were presented and accepted, the meeting being advised that copies of the financials and any other documents could be obtained on request.

 

The meeting closed at 17h15.

 

 

P Raubenheimer

 

_______________

Chairperson                                                                                                             Date:  2nd July 2015

Certified as a true reflection of the contents of the meeting.