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Media Release: Bob Scott Retirement Village opens in Petone

The $120 million Bob Scott Retirement Village was been officially opened on November 24 at one of the biggest parties of the year in Petone.

Bruce Scott, son of the legendary All Blacks fullback and Petone stalwart, and Lower Hutt Mayor Ray Wallace officially opened the new village at a party attended by more than 300 special guests, residents, neighbours and staff.

The Graham St village was built by Ryman Healthcare and is the only retirement village in New Zealand built on base isolators to guard against earthquakes.

The village offers a number of retirement living options including independent apartments, serviced apartments and its care centre has resthome, hospital and dementia care. It also features a café, indoor swimming pool, movie theatre and hair and beauty salons.

Ryman Healthcare Managing Director Simon Challies said he had fallen in love with the site when he first visited in 2010.

“I climbed up on the riverbank and, with the river, the hills and the views I thought we could be on to a winner.’’

“Bob Scott represents a new generation of villages because of its size and features – we’ve never built anything quite like this before. It has also been our most technically difficult build to date because of its extensive earthquake prevention technology.’’

“Our design and construction teams have done an incredible job, it is a village we are extremely proud of.’’

The village was filling fast, Simon Challies said.

“We’d like to thank the Petone community for taking the village to its heart.’’

The Bob Scott village is the largest apartment complex in New Zealand built on base isolators to guard against earthquakes.

“It came through the November 14 quake with flying colours, we never imagined its base isolators would be put to the test so soon,’’ Simon Challies said.

Bruce Scott said the family was delighted to see the village named after his dad. Bob had been proud of his time in Petone where he pursued his loves of rugby and golf and raised the family.

Bob Scott worked in partnership for many years with All Blacks captain Andy Leslie, running Scott and Leslie menswear shop on Jackson St. Petone had a special place in Bob’s heart, Bruce said.

“The Petone menswear shop became a den of infamous analysis on post and pre-game performances Monday and Friday morning teas respectively,’’ Bruce said.

“Dad’s many years in business and community life in Petone made him proud of his personal achievements here, which included the honour of receiving an MBE.”

“He would have made him exceptionally pleased and proud to have the village named after him.’’

Andy Leslie welcomed all the new residents to the village, especially those who had moved from other parts of the city to live at Bob Scott.

“I’d like to thank Ryman for building this village, you can all be exceptionally proud of it,’’ he said.

Lower Hutt Mayor Ray Wallace thanked Ryman for making the investment in the area.

Ryman Healthcare names all its villages in honour of prominent locals. Other blocks at the village are named after of Petone-born ballet star Sir Jon Trimmer, and Petone All Blacks Don McIntosh, Ken Gray, Allan Hewson and as well as Andy Leslie.

Simon Challies thanked Bruce for allowing the name to be used.

“Bob Scott’s story is inspirational. He was incredibly talented and his hard work and perseverance motivated those who knew him. He was also a great character and we are pleased to be able to honour his memory in this way.’’

About Bob Scott:

Bob Scott was born in Wellington in 1921 and grew up in poverty during the depression.

A keen sportsman, he became a masterful bare foot kicker because he was unable to afford boots when he was young.

After volunteering to fight in World War 2, his sporting talent was soon recognised and he was selected to play for the Kiwi armed forces team.

After the war he played 17 tests for the All Blacks,and built his reputation as a nimble, attacking fullback who was able to land kicks from over half way. He is considered one of the finest All Blacks fullbacks ever to play.

Former commentator Winston McCarthy said Bob Scott could play in any position in the backline because of his supreme skills.

"For me there will never by anyone as great as Scott,'' Winston McCarthy wrote.

Bob ended his rugby career playing for Petone. He bought a menswear store on Jackson St which he ran for more than 20 years, becoming a well-known figure in the local business community.

He was awarded an MBE in 1995 for his services to sportand the community.Heretired to live on the Coromandel Peninsula and died in 2012 at the age of 91.

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