Celebrating the life of Kiwi cartoonist Murray Ball

Rural Exchange 07/10/2018

There really is nothing more rural New Zealand than Footrot Flats.

To celebrate the life of cartoonist Murray Ball, creator of the classic Kiwi comic strip, an iconic Rural Day event will be held in Feilding, his hometown.

Gareth Ball, son of Murray Ball, says the family is “really excited”.

Organisers say the event is “an amazing opportunity” to show love for the much loved New Zealand artist who passed away in March 2017.

Speaking to RadioLIVE’s Rural Exchange, Gareth Ball says he had an “amazing upbringing”.

“We spent our early lives on four acres of land, just outside of Gisborne, and he wasn’t much of a farmer really.

He was a great father.

“We’d follow him out in the school holidays, planting trees up the hill, and chasing our small flock of sheep around,” Mr Ball said.

“[Dad] made life interesting for us. At the end of the day we would sit down and he’d show us the cartoons he’d drawn for the day and we’d have a laugh over dinner. It was pretty special.”

Rural Day will be held in Feilding’s Manchester Square, Friday 12th October.

Locals and fans of Murray Ball are invited to sing along with local schools and music groups the Footrot Flats movie theme song, Slice of Heaven by Dave Dobbyn.

Watch the full interview with Gareth Ball above.

Rural Exchange with Hamish McKay, Sarah Perriam and Richard Loe, 5-7am Saturday and Sunday on RadioLIVE with Carter’s Tyre Service. Click here for all the ways to watch and listen.