New Zealand
October 16, 1999

Jackson Movie Brings Ring to Strathmore Tills
Bernie Napp

Business is booming for some retailers in Strathmore thanks to the making of the $360 million movie trilogy The Lord Of The Rings. The film being produced by Seatoun's Peter Jackson is great for business, Strathmore butcher Ron Graeme said. Jackson, prop makers, and a stuntman were among his customers. "We have been seeing a few strange faces. They seem to go back telling the others where they have been shopping," he said. Business had picked up since work on the film began, he said.

Strathmore baker Karen Simpson said she'd served Jackson, Sam Neill, and other actors. Staff have seen "little people" in the shop on several occasions. "When they come in for lunch, they come in packs." They only have half an hour for lunch so they can eat on site. The bakery has opened a cafe to provide seating, hot drinks and meals, she said.

Dairy owner Jitendra Patel said Lord Of The Rings had increased traffic. He said he'd seen Jackson and Neill from time to time in his shop, as had Strathmore Fish Supply.

But business is not booming for all retailers on the strip. Greengrocer James Wong and pharmacist Alastair Harry said business was quieter than usual.

Encouraged by expanding fortunes, Strathmore Four Square Discounter owner Depak Dahya said he would open an Indian takeaway in the same block of shops next week. A former Seatoun residents' association member, Ray Harris, said that a new dairy, two new fish shops, a new Indian takeaway, the bakery and the butcher's shop in Strathmore "have taken off like a rocket."