His farm-registered SUV and makeshift lean-to with rudimentary kitchen shelves has occupied a prime corner of Auckland’s waterfront for more than a year.
A so-called freedom camper and fisherman called John is bamboozling officials under pressure to move him on.
His possie is on Wynyard Pt, at the northern end of a precinct in the throes of a multibillion-dollar redevelopment, and just across the water from property developer Dave Henderson’s $10 million penthouse on Princes Wharf.
John, who will not give his full name, says it is part of a “fisherman’s park” allowing him a right to peaceful occupation.
He says he is not hurting anybody by being there, in the company of more occasional freedom campers and anglers, in the sun and breeze a world away from the melee of Queen St.
But another fisherman pressing Auckland Transport to take action accuses him of arrogance in monopolising the site, and obscuring a road safety sign warning motorists of a sharp right-hand bend.
“Not only is he parked in front of this sign, which is erected on to a tin fence, but he has built a shelter with kitchen shelves between his vehicle and the fence,” said the complainant, who did not want to be identified.
The man said the council’s transport body had painted broken yellow lines along the full eastern side of Bingham St except for the final two or three metres – under John’s vehicle.
“He refused to move for them to paint there.”
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Freedom camper's free home with $10m view