It's been along time since I wrote a blog, in fact over 2 years. I started Lake Alice website as a way for people to get an awareness of the place, whether that be to learn about the history, human rights, browse the photography, as a resource for learning or for the first port before Urban Exploration... 8 years on!
A past patient of Porirua hospital has suggested to me (which over the time I started the website it has come up before) why not have some sort of monument for those who where in psychiatric hospitals, or hospitals of sort that were running at the time. This monument is to show survival and bravery, strength. What ever else positive things you would like to make of it. So I want to hear your opinion, past patients and anyone reading this, what would be a good monument, where, how could we raise the funds, what hospitals should be included, (e.g. Tokanui, Seacliff) keeping in mind Lake Alice is now demolished so its private property so perhaps finding any alternative place for the monument. Could it be at a local park with permission from council, a tree or park bench. Would the mental health organisation assist if I contacted them, maybe someone reading this knows someone who may donate something or help.
Please leave your comments
I thought it was about time I had a update, heres a few photos of the current condition of the buildings.
I'm really sorry to announce after 4 years of working with the Lake Alice historic abuse case and many wonderful past patients I'm leaving the cause . This has been the most rewarding voluntary work I have ever been involved in and changed my life and taught me things about society I would have never got to learn otherwise, I got to meet some really great people and most of all got to push the fact that Lake Alice was more then a hospital for "mental people" and not everybody who was there had some condition. Thank you to all the fantastic support over the years to my many regulars on the website, blogs, emails you helped me keep the site pumping.
The website will stay online as a archive and I'd like to put more photos online eventually,
Thank you again for the last 5 years of lakealicehospital.com I never thought the website would be so big!
See you round,
Gee where have I been for the last wee while, life! So since I last dropped a blog, the UN has told the Police and Government they need to reopen the Historic Abuse case and give us some answers but they ofcourse at this stage have until late last year, so thats some positive progress, so fingers crossed and well done to Victor for all his hard work so far on getting the case to the UN. The Police never did a proper job in the first place at investigating the Lake Alice case and never even spoke to witnesses who supplied complaints, they even went as far to say, one was dead when they where doing just fine.
I've learned alot over the years from becoming involved with this Lake Alice work, sadly I have less faith in the NZ Police system and I'm more aware of what is going on around us for a young person. I probably sound paranoid and crazy, but when you mention Lake Alice to most people they start to think you're a little bizarre, why not drop it? they got there money, but the one thing we can't let go is no one was held responsible, and at the end of the day that just isn't right, fair, law. You can say that's just the way it was back then, besides finding that an excuse, I might say to you, how would you feel if that was your father, daughter or friend. People today are still being convicted of abuse cases from many years ago, how are they different? did these children give consent to be touched, minds torched or put in Lake Alice. Many of the parents where unaware of what went on, even the welfare office was unaware.
Perhaps imagine how being a patient in there felt. If anything you where crazy once you left. What a struggle it becomes coping everyday, recurring nightmares and then receiving that pitiful amount compensation after all that, kick in the guts. Atleast thats what one past patient said to me.
Someone made a comment to me recently on facebook that there was a fire at the hospital and it was burning down, perhaps Old McDonald was having a bonfire and toasting marshmallows, but from what I could see poking my head over the fence ;) the buildings still appear to be coming down slowly, I took pictures but lost them so nothing to share, but there still shells and nothing to thrilling. (not sure I mentioned in other blogs) I also believe hes sold the front property 6 months ago or so, which had been for sale for 2 years which we call the Caretakers cottage, he was asking 200k for it but would have got less.
My intention now for the website in the next 12 months will be to put most of my photos I have of LA online if I can find them as I had my externals stolen when we where burgled recently, but I did make a DVD back up year ago so should be sweet, silly crim's ;)
Always like to hear from anyone else whos got news of any sort or been by the hospital..
All for now, thanks for reading folks
Letter response from the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency regarding Selwyn Leeks. They are now saying the public are protected from Leeks professional conduct because he is not practicing but no further action will be taken as he stood down back in 2006. The letter draws mention to the fact NZ failed to act on original complaints submitted back in the late 70's. You start to wonder if any discipline was ever likely. The highlight is that its a official document says while things where left to late, alot should have happened differently and Australia is saying NZ failed to do this. Hindsight! At least we now have the UN's response in good time.
I've been quite slack over the past few months with keeping this informed. So just before we roll over to 2012 I thought I'd drop a few lines. The big news is I finally meet the infamous Old McDonald and owner of Lake Alice for those who don't take the time to read my site properly, it appeared McDonald already knew who I was by name so that was awfully flattering. Although when I remarked he is probably a regular on the website he very much choose to deny this. McDonald brought Lake Alice in December 2008 for 2.5 Million I believe it was, his first bid back in 2006 for just under 1 million dollars was out bid. I have learnt he is a tight man when it comes to money.
So the Property Brokers website stated that the Admin block and cottage etc has finally sold, I know that Old McDonald wanted around $200,000 for it.
The buildings, Villas are still coming down, roofs off and insides its pretty much a empty shell inside. The Maximum has been blown up to give them what looks like access to the courts/ middle of the building and the old swimming pool has gone (so theres no pools out there anymore)
If anyone has a problem with my spelling or grammar then either make your own website or correct it yourself and email me. I have a life I can't maintain every inch of this website. Be thankful it's even still online :D
in 2012 where going to aim for a forum which will help past patients interact with each other, your welcome to give me feedback on this..
Before I sign off quick holla to Ed Hills and Jim, keep it real guys and see you both next year!
Seasons greetings and we'll see you in 2012,
This month we have any exciting photo update with pictures from January, thanks to Paul N. While it seems the Maximum is in destruction probably due to the Army they are the past offenders. The rest of the buildings are slowly coming down. Old Mcdonald is a cheap old coot and is trying to selvage whatever he can. The Admin block and caretaker house is still on the market, clearly still seldom interest.
I wanted to do two parts to this blog, as I managed to obtain photos of a ECT machine that was brought at a Palmerston North hospital auction few years back now. This machine is believed to have been used at Lake Alice, it has a sticker remaining on it saying 'V6' Villa 6. The ECT machine was also used in the early 2000's for a TVNZ documentary on Lake Alice. Check out the photos,
Our thoughts are with the people of Christchurch in this terrible time, again.
Another blog down!
I thought I would make the blog entries second monthly so I don't run out of things to write about and it's a better way to keep the website fresh.
The Maximum unit is looking like a bomb site the word is that the Army have been let through there to do as they please, I guess thats one way for Old Mcdonald to save money on knocking a building down. Slow process but the buildings are slowly coming down.
Admin block and Caretakers house is still on the market so I'm guessing he isn't dropping the price on that one, A mistake considering what he paid on the previous Hospital grounds. Greedy farmer.
Nothing else to report,
I know that Lake Alice would have been a popular place to visit over the holidays and kept Old Mcdonald on his toes as the young people of Manawatu and Wanganui would have had nothing better to do ;)
Something different to start off this month, I thought I would talk about keywords used to enter the website, such as via google or bing. These sort of things can be very amusing other times typical.
My favourite for 2010 was 'lake alice haunted' quite a few people used that one, still getting our kicks are we people. Others where 'how many people died there' or 'where is lake alice, (hmm I wonder) It's funny what people ask google lol and then there was people who need to learn to spell Alice not Ellis. Over all most people just stuck to the usual 'lake alice'.
I am pleased though that the website is seen not just by NZ but by wide variety of other country's.
Keep a eye out on the Uncovering the Truth page. Over the next few months I will be contributing to this, documents from a past patient displaying his journey from when he first laid his complaint against Dr Leeks and the Child and Adolescent unit in the late 1970's up until current with the UN report. Every piece tells a honest battle that has been fought and will not be lost, this is a fight not only by one patient but by many, just one who was brave enough back in 1970's to speak out against the abuse at Lake Alice. We will go back to the start and show you where it all began!
Speaking of corruption,
Grant Camerons law firm (GCALawyers) is back and just in time to suck money out of hard up New Zealanders at Christmas time, who have loved ones who have been in a psychiatric hospital. This time Mr Camerons firm is working at a so called 'significantly reduced charge' to help a family who's son died while in the care of the Canterbury District Health Board. Due to losing a civil case against the DHB they are liable for $11,000 after the case was dismissed. Mr Cameron I think this family haven't got any money, why are you charging them? You should be doing this for free. The government paid you almost 2 million dollars from the Lake Alice compensation and all you had to do was sit on your ass. Something a former female patient said to me recently about Mr Cameron. In a television interview when the compensation was won, she recalls Grant Cameron saying 'he would have done it for nothing'. I'll just leave you all with that as a last thought, Keep in mind the fees had to come out of there compensation, practically half. See Uncovering the Truth for more!
Check out the Canterbury news article here.
Hope you are all enjoying your holidays,
Best wishes for 2011!
Lake Alice Blog