Thanks for the heads-up on the icons - will follow that through.
I am not sure that I accept the explanation for the blank site though. As I said:
"Rebuilt the item as text seperator - tested OK
Modified the item to be as it should > External URL > http://www.theocc.org.nz/newsletters/Beacon.pdf
> open in new window
Saved, tested - site blank
Unpublished menu item [OCC Beacon] and site returned to normal"
It appears that I can blank/unblank this site simply by making one change to one menu item. Surely this should not happen?
The Template doesn't interact or have control over the menu systems. All the Template does is output the menu system to a position on the site using a standardized call in the index.php. The fact that when you change the menu item to something else and it works indicates there is something wrong/corrupt with your database or menu system. When a site appears blank this is generally the cause of a database/php issue which is not something a Template has control over.
If you install the latest version of the Site Shaper / Template on a fresh database and test the menu items again, then you can compare what your doing on the live site/new site. If the issue only occurs on the live site this indicates something in the database/menu system is corrupted.