New book on Oamaru to be published

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A book called Oamaru: New Zealand’s Living Victorian Town is set to be released in October, featuring the Victorian heritage of the town from the 1870s through to the present day.

There are a variety of topics in the book which include The Victorian area of the town back in the 1870s, a heritage section, a Steampunk section and a Victorian Flair Taste of Oamaru section.

Many well known Oamaruvians and identities are included, among them Donna Demente, David Wilson, John Baster, Steampunk HQ, The Whisky Company, Whitestone Oamaru, the Opera House and many more. Recipes from Annie Baxter, Bevan Smith, Pen-y-burn and Steam are also in the book

Author Paul Sorrell, of Dunedin, said the book is all about Oamaru’s history to the present and what the town offers.

“It’s a great wee town that’s a bit out of the way for some people and we want to help get people’s attention back to the area.”

Mr Sorrell is also the author of Fleurs Place and said the book will give visitors to Oamaru a fantastic insight into the town.

“It’s has a lot of different things about Oamaru and what’s there.”

One of the main purposes behind the book was to help promote the town and all the Victorian Heritage.

“We made the book so it can be given to businesses throughout the town for them to display inside their shops, so when visitors come all the way to Oamaru on tours and for various other ventures they can show them the book and make them buy it to help show the image of the town.”

Mr Sorrell said the book also has a very good insight for people into how the Victorian Precinct area was reformed by David Wilson and a few others back in the 1980s.

“Following the loss of wool in about the 1880s the Victorian area went to sleep for about 100 years and then it was brought back into life by a few well known locals around 1980s,” he said.

A date has yet to be decided but there will be a gathering for the community to attend an official launch of the book.

“We want everybody to turn up, it will be a bit of a party and get as many people along as possible, it will be held somewhere in the Victorian Precinct.”

By BRAYDEN LINDSAY