Notice from Leisure Isle Residents' Association
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14 October 2020

Dear <<First Name>>,


LIRA sincerely thanks the many Islanders who have contributed this project – donations have not been limited to LIRA members and we are most grateful to all who have participated.

Contract awarded: While we have just awarded the contract to embark on the repairs, we urge all those who may not have been convinced by our original appeal to reconsider making a donation. Imagine, an amount of just R1,000 from each household would enable us to carry out extensive repairs and upgrades to restore the integrity of the wall, and fill our reserves for future work. Please help this cause, not only to improve and protect our island, but also our property values.

We asked several contractors to bid for this project, and after evaluation and consultation by our engineers, we have appointed B&V Contractors who have done much past work on the seawall. We are satisfied their offer is sound and fairly priced.

LIRA looks to its reserves: Our Treasurer, on further analysis of LIRA's financial reserves, has agreed that we are position to fund any shortfall of the R400K we are currently seeking. To date, some R330K has been donated and we hope this will be further boosted with this repeated appeal. If there is any call on LIRA's reserves, we believe this will be money well spent and trust you will support this decision by the Committee.

We attach a letter from the Municipality, for your information, to illustrate how difficult it is to progress important infrastructure matters – click here to download.

I assure you we are engaging with KM's legal representative, Melony Paulsen, and continue to pressure all parties to find a resolution to the impasse between KM and SANParks over the matter of seawall ownership. We are not simply turning a blind eye to KM's responsibility to provide services to its ratepayers.

I would like to thank committee members Mark Sofianos and Dennis Boyd for many hours of work on this, along with the invaluable technical expertise of Colin Dittmer, Craig Clarke and David Stromberg who are giving of their time freely. Their commitment to the Island is greatly appreciated. 

Likewise, we thank Jonathan Kingwill who will manage all aspects of environmental compliance – we have awarded Blue Pebble Consulting this task and thank him for the hard work in securing all the necessary permissions.  The project will commence within the next few days, likely starting at Green Hole, and be finalised by mid-December 2020.

Again, THANK YOU to all who have assisted this project and made the repairs possible.


BIG or SMALL, please assist this initiative!

Please donate to the LIRA account, and reference with your surname and ‘Seawall’.

FNB Knysna
Registered name: LEISUREISL
Branch Code: 210214 
Account: 62012612009

Should you wish to discuss this matter, please feel free to contact me. 

In closing, I would  like to thank my Committee who willingly devote many hours to all sorts of tasks that often go unnoticed - all tackle their roles with energy and commitment. We are determined to make progress on the important aspects of governance, and will persevere even when we feel hamstrung. 

By taking on significant maintenance projects which we all agree should be handled at municipal level we believe we are showing our commitment to retaining the value of the Island as a prime destination, and one of which we are proud. It does not mean we do not expect KM to be accountable and we back this belief by ongoing engagement at all levels. 

Cearn Hall: I would also like to mention here the wonderful community spirit shown in the gardening group who have devoted time recently to beautify and maintain the gardens around Cearn Hall – thank you all. LIRA, via our contracted gardening service, also helps with maintenance of the surrounds of Cearn Hall.

Kind regards,

Mary-Anne Beviss-Challinor
LIRA Chairman
Email me here, or call 082 651 3767


There is an IDP Report-Back meeting at Cearn Hall on the 14 October 2020 – TODAY – at 6pm.

Please attend should you be interested in commenting on any relevant matters. It is imperative that we make our presence felt with regard to service provision on the Island. 

LIRA is currently corresponding with KM (in conjunction with neighbouring associations at the Heads and Rexford/Hunters Home) regarding the upgrade of George Rex Drive which was to be undertaken in 2020. We have been advised that budget has been reallocated to areas of greater need and the current allocation is now a paltry R500k. The work will be done in the 20/21 financial year we believe. Correspondence in this regard, and several other issues, is ongoing.

Read more about the Integrated Development Plan for Knysna here: The IDP is a five-year plan which local government is required to compile to determine the development needs of the municipality. The projects within the IDP are also linked to the municipality’s budget.

We will advise further when this meeting is to be held....

Municipal by-election - 11 November 2020

As you are all aware, the voter registration recently process took place at Cearn Hall. We can confirm the following two candidates are up for election: the ex incumbent and mayor, Mark Willemse, who is standing as an independent, and Sharon Sabbagh for the DA.

We plan to arrange a meet-and-greet event with the candidates at a suitable venue should lockdown permit. We need to have a strong, competent voice in Council and it is our responsibility to choose wisely.

Mark Willemse - Independent

"During these very unstable and trying times due to the global pandemic, hope is what we cling to in dealing with uncertain times ahead of anything returning to any form of normality. We hope that our health will remain good, that finances and jobs are secure, that security and safety of communities prevails, and that our citizens’ best interests are looked after.

"It is with these thoughts in mind that I have made the decision to stand as an independent candidate for the upcoming Ward 9 by-election in Knysna to take place on 11 November 2020.
"My experience as the previous Ward 9 councillor, as well as executive mayor of Knysna, has given me the experience required to represent the residents and to provide that hope that the tide will turn and that our ailing town will be resuscitated.
"The current financial situation as well as the unstable political conditions has made for a very negative perception of the environment for the economic revival of Knysna....

Read more on his Facebook page here

Municipal tender for seasonal informal trade permits

This tender has again been advertised by KM. LIRA believes that the allocation of a seasonal trading permit on the Island is not desirable for many reasons; namely that the nature of the permit is broad, there is little value offered in the fees paid to KM, it detracts from legitimate rate-paying businesses on the island and we have no control over what will be traded.

Everyone, too, is likely familiar with the pink ice cream truck last season - with many complaints about its noise pollution and location.

LIRA will be making representation to KM in this regard, and we urge anyone who feels strongly about this to object in their independent capacity, too. 

Once the permits are awarded it is very difficult to manage the location of the actual trading. 

Seasonal Planning between LIRA and KM

We have made contact with the relevant departments and are in the process of securing all the services that we usually put in place to mitigate problems during December/January on the Island. 

We will continue to engage monthly until the season begins and trust that KM will provide the service we hope for during the peak season. There are questions regarding access to funds for overtime and additional law enforcement and cleaning services, but we are currently pressing on with our requirements.

Litter bin project

We are pleased with the outcome of this exercise. There are areas which still require attention and we shall proceed in the coming months to add additional bins in high demand areas, as well as affix some tasteful information stickers on them ahead of the summer season.

Special thanks to Mark and Gail Sofianos for handling this task.

Watercraft on Bollard Beach

Once again, LIRA appeals to all owners of craft that are currently on the beach to make contact with Craig Carter (here) to verify ownership. Many of the boats have been identified and we thank those that have come forward. 

We receive ongoing requests to deal with abandoned and broken craft and would really appreciate assistance in getting these identified and removed.


We appeal to all Islanders to consider joining the Friends of Steenbok Nature Reserve – this is such a valuable natural asset on our island, and it doesn't happen without costs and the devoted efforts and hard work of the Steenbok Mancomm and other volunteers. 

The annual levy is a nominal R500. Join Friends of Steenbok here

The agreement between LIRA/KM/SANParks is up for renewal in 2021 and we will jointly work to ensure that this is achieved and safeguarded for the next ten years. Your contributions will be vital in ensuring we retain this gem. 

Click the pic above to read the latest Steenbok newsletter!


LICC another wonderful thing that makes life on Leisure Isle such a pleasure and a privilege. This great facility is open to all who wish to join. 

The LICC is popular for both tennis and bowls - both also offer access to visitors for a nominal fee. LICC is keenly looking for new members and welcomes all who may wish to make use of this facility. 

Here is a  message from Graeme Levin, LICC competitions secretary:

Leisure Isle Country Club welcomes you. Join this friendly community and enjoy playing bowls in a picturesque setting!
  • Free coaching
  • Loan bowls available
  • Free practice while you decide on membership
  • All ages welcome
  • Experience not necessary
  • Meet other friendly Leisure Isle residents and visitors
  • Magnificent bowling greens and tennis courts, as well as table tennis and various functions at Cearn Hall
New members are the club’s lifeblood. If the club fails, there is a possibility of alternative usage of the land on our beautiful island by the owners, the Knysna Municipality.

Just go to the club any morning or phone 044 384 1158 or 083 233 5701. The club manager, Fergie, will tell you about the club and help you to get started with bowls.
We look forward to welcoming you!
KM AppKnysna Municipal Services

Report potholes, broken water mains etc here!
The Knynsa Municipality App (left) is now the go-to place to report these sorts of infrastructure issues - with top KM officials advising us so. You can download the app from iTunes or Google Playstore.

Report illegal baiting here!
The all-hours SANParks Rangers' Estuary Duty number is
082 269-5007
. Use this to report illegal activities.

The SANParks Knysna general enquiries number is
044 382-2095.
* Provides 24/7 proactive security
* Sponsors Steenbok Nature Reserve
* Champions peak season law enforcement
* Liaison/lobbying Knysna Municipality
* Liaison Nature Conservation/SANParks
* Beautification of LI
* Employment of gardeners
* Hosts Leisure Isle Festival
* Maintains property values and unequalled lifestyle
* Professional and dedicated volunteer committee serving your interests

LIRA would like as many Islanders as possible to receive these newsletters.

If you have family members, tenants or friends who would be interested in getting our news, we'd like to add them to our mailing database. Please send email details to Brenda Neall.
We welcome your comments and feedback on this newsletter. And your input, too! Your news, ideas, stories, happenings are welcome.

Brenda Neall, website & newsletter

To contact LIRA chairperson, Mary-Anne Beviss-Challinor: 
Email her here, or call 082 651 3767.

LIRA website:
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