Husband of cyclist killed on road speaks at safety rally; meat plant fire believed to have been started by sparks from a contractors saw; Kiwi children tell United Nations that gangs, family violence and bullying are NZ's biggest problems.
The husband of a cyclist killed by a car near Morrinsville saying says the 23-year-old driver is a victim too. Roger Wolfe and his 16-year-old daughter Kelly joined about 300 cyclists at a road safety rally at Queens Wharf in Auckland on Sunday.
The Herald reports that sparks from a contractors saw are believed to have ignited the blaze which gutted the Te Aroha freezing works on Friday night, leaving hundreds of workers jobless just weeks before Christmas.
Police had to bash down a toilet door to rescue an unconscious bar patron after a suspected mass drink spiking in Napier. The paper reports they found three others bar-goers convulsing or lying comatose in the bar.
New Zealand children have told the United Nations that gangs, family violence and bullying are New Zealand's biggest problems and children bear the brunt of it.
Christchurch mayor Bob Parker says the future of the city centre is balancing on a knife edge. He is backing calls to attract shopping mall developers into the city centre and away from the suburbs, using inducements such as lower rates and planning fee discounts.
The Press says 115,000 people turned out to see Santa at the annual Christmas parade on Saturday.
Otago Daily Times
The paper reports 85,000 spectators are expected to flood New Zealand for next year's Rugby World Cup saying it will be a turning point for the country's tourism industry.
A simple but poignant tribute was paid to the 29 men who died at the Pike River Coal mine, at Oceana Gold's Macraes goldmine open day at the weekend. Some 2000 people flocked to the free open day and donations were taken for the Pike River appeal fund.