OBITUARY - Nigel Geoffrey Wharton

19 Sep 1947 - 10 Nov 2012

Nigel Geoffrey Wharton As a young man in short trousers Nigel began his planning career with the Ministry of Works and Development in the Poverty Bay and Hawkes Bay areas. In both Napier and Gisborne there are lasting legacies of Nigels early planning handiwork, including the planned development of Gisborne onto land that Nigel was instrumental in purchasing on behalf of the Ministry of Works and the development of mulit-unit terraced housing at Ahuriri. Having started their family in Napier, Nigel and his wife Jan moved to the Waikato in the mid eighties with their three young boys.

Nigel worked initially in the Waikato for the Ministry of Works and Development and then moved into local government taking on a senior management role with the Waikato District Council. Following this Nigel moved to Woollahra Municipal Council in Sydney and took up the position of Director Land Management Services. Nigel then returned from, what he termed his OE to work at the Opotiki District Council and then onto the Rotorua District Council. Nigel retired from his role as Director Environmental Services with the Rotorua District Council in 2010 so that he could spend more time with Jan. They indulged in their passion for travel and increasingly spent more time with their three sons, daughters-in-law, and their grandchildren.

Nigel enjoyed planning; the strategy, the tactics, the game as he called it. Tactics and humour sum up Nigels approach to planning. Nigel always had his eye on the big picture, but ensured that the detail was also covered making sure it did not trip you up later a belts and braces approach.

Nigel was infamous for his sage planning advice. What the RMA says in lengthy legalese Nigel would sum up very eloquently for young planners looking for guidance, return that application, we dont accept half baked scones around here.

Nigels passing was sudden and unexpected. Many of those who worked with Nigel have talked fondly over the last few weeks of his love for his family, his never ending sense of fun, and as someone who considered the right balance in life was a glass of wine in one hand and a good book in the other.