Monthly Archives: July 2018

Special guests for VIEW

Stuart and Di Taylor at the recent VIEW meeting. Stuart is a Commander in the Royal Australian NavyCrookwell VIEW Club was very pleased to be able to have Commander Stuart Taylor RAN and his wife Di as their guest speakers at the April meeting.

In a return visit to VIEW after seven years, Commander Taylor spoke about what ANZAC day meant to him. Speaking briefly of the various postings where he has served, Commander Taylor described one particular ANZAC day ceremony during the Iraq war. An anticipated crowd of thirty or so at a ceremony unexpectedly became one of over three hundred as many and varied personnel from a range of nations came together to mark the solemn occasion. Commander Taylor concluded that what ANZAC day meant for him was about having a causeway across generations and about companionship. His experience in Iraq had certainly demonstrated this for him.

Di spoke about the life of a defence force family with frequent moves, lost contacts, and the occasional emergency that had to be managed alone. She spoke of the many friends and acquaintances they have been able to make from their postings and the great variety in experiences that they have had.

For Di Taylor, ANZAC day resonates with memories of the cold early start with the dawn service and the sense of comradeship. She said that for her, ANZAC day was also a time of reflection, national pride and communities coming together.

Crookwell VIEW’s March meeting raised over $300 for the Smith Family. Thanks must go to Sally Cullen for providing Postie clothing for the fashion parade and to the members who made purchases.

The May meeting of Crookwell VIEW will be on Tuesday May 27 at Crookwell Ex-Services Club starting at 7.00 pm.

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From football field to the classroom

SPELLBOUND BY LEAGUE ICON: Student Learning Support Officers Alison Reiken and Julie and Jenny Clarke. lm043014support1THERE were plenty of star struck people when nine member schools and representatives from the Bathurst Small Schools Network were invited to a Development Day at Cooerwull School.

The theme for day was Gateway to Learning with speakers being Terry Westblake and former Australian, NSW and Balmain rugby league star Wayne Pearce.

SPECIAL GUEST: Former international rugby league star Wayne Peace. lm043014support2

Pearce and Westblade shared their knowledge, skills and experiences that provided motivating, challenging and innovative learning experiences need for the local students.

“Both were captivating, dynamic and entertaining with all present saying that they were highly impressed and received a lot out of their talks,” host principal from Cooerwull Mark Snow said.

Pearce was in demand by the audience’s ‘sports lovers’ and was happy to sign autographs and have his photo taken.

They also took part in workshops along with several other teachers who acted as presenters.

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Foundation Day speech

“Good morning everyone…

I reckoned when I was first asked to make this address that I was on a hiding to nothing, having to talk about the history of Braidwood to the people whose families, or even themselves, were the history of Braidwood. As a hick from over the hill, I hadn’t been here more than a handful of times in my life before I became involved with Council. But here I am nonetheless, having accepted the challenge.

It’s not every day that a Mayor of a shire has the privilege of inviting the community to share in the celebration of the 175th anniversary of their town. But so it is today. Before proceeding, however, I would like to follow on from Uncle Max’s comments and acknowledge that there were indigenous communities in the area long before European settlers arrived. In these proceedings I would like to formally recognise their living culture and their unique role in the life and history of this region.

The last time I stood up here to talk about some aspect of Braidwood history, I was roundly berated for propagating false myths about a locally bred thoroughbred racehorse. I’ll endeavour to avoid doing anything of the sort on this occasion, having enlisted the assistance of a couple of local historians in preparing these notes.

What I’d like to do is to briefly step back in time and trace the steps of our fair Braidwood, from its genesis to the present day, having become in the process the first town in Australia to be listed on the State Heritage Register.

The 20s and 30s

European settlers first appeared in the area in the early 1820s, as the early explorers crossed the Great Divide and searched for alternate routes to the coast. It wasn’t until 1839, however, that a town plan was surveyed for Braidwood, and that is what is recognised as the birthday of our town. Some years earlier, however, one Dr Thomas Braidwood Wilson settled in the area. Dr Wilson, of Scottish heritage as many will be aware, was the surgeon superintendent on a number of convict vessels that transported some of the earliest European immigrants to Australia’s shores. He originally took up land in Van Diemen’s Land, but ultimately moved to the mainland, around Lake Bathurst, and then subsequently to the site on which we find our town of Braidwood today.

Even before the township was actually surveyed, Dr Wilson was playing a pivotal role in the establishment of the settlement. He was not only a surgeon, but also a pastoralist and community leader, even filling to the role of local magistrate at times, having organised the construction of the first courthouse in the town in 1837.

While this might seem a little unusual, that a courthouse might be one of the earliest public buildings constructed in the area, we need to remember that a significant proportion of the local population in those days were ‘government men’, convicts that had been assigned as labourers to the local landholders. While the names of many of the pastoralists carry on, we shouldn’t forget the contribution made to the establishment of our town by these less fortunate souls.

As fate would have it, Braidwood’s early days were marked by events that would prove to characterise the Australian landscape. The area was hit by severe drought in the late 30s and early 40s, something with which many here today will be only too well acquainted. The general economic situation was desperate, and many immigrants would undoubtedly have returned home to Ireland except that Ireland too was similarly stricken, 1840 being the height of the potato famine. Ireland lost almost 50% of its population in a five-year period from either starvation or emigration.

The 40s and the Drought Breaks

Nonetheless, the drought broke in the early 1840s, and transportation of convicts ceased not long thereafter. Convicts had to serve out their time of course, so free labour was still available for some time thereafter. Even so, many convicts continued to live and work on their assigned properties after their tickets of leave expired, and settled down into the local communities.

But recovery from drought is a slow process as we know, and rebuilding flocks and herds in those days was not just a matter of going to the sale yards and buying stock.

The Gold Rush Years (50s & 60s)

As fate would have it, however, in the mid-1840s, there were rumours of gold discoveries in New South Wales. The publication of such stories was strongly discouraged, with the government of the day actively impeding the flow of related information. The discovery of gold in California a few years earlier had resulted in massive social and economic dislocation, with people leaving the regular workforce on farms, in shops and in government employ to find their fortune on the goldfields. This was the last thing the government in Sydney wanted, with the country needing all available labour to help get the colony thriving again after the drought.

It was only going to be a matter of time though, and in 1851 gold was found down the [Araluen] Valley, and shortly after at the [Majors] Creek, then Mongarlowe—it was everywhere. And yes, everyone then had much better things to do than herd sheep and plough paddocks. For a while, properties were abandoned by their workforce, and the often absentee landlords and owners had to return to safeguard their properties and manage the work themselves.

But these thousands of prospectors and miners who flocked to the district had to be fed, clothed, and provided with services, household goods, hardware and building materials. They came to town with money in their pockets, and created their own boom, not just in Braidwood, but also throughout much of central NSW and Victoria.

The squatters made fortunes supplying meat, milk and grain for the miners, and townsfolk did well supplying them with all manner of other goods and services. The town prospered, and began to look the part, and it is no coincidence that most of the heritage-listed buildings in Braidwood were constructed around this time.

And yet the town stayed nicely contained within its original boundaries, with a clear demarcation between village and rural landscapes—no urban sprawl for Braidwood. Part of the reason for this was that after Dr Braidwood Wilson died in 1843, his land was bought by John Coghill of ‘Bedervale’. This gave Mr Coghill and his family something in the order of 60,000 acres in the district, containing the village on three sides. Apparently, Mr Coghill never liked to part with his property, and so Braidwood development was restricted to the original town plan.

Easy Money—Bushrangers

Gold was moved through the district by horse drawn coach, an excellent example of which has been restored and is on display in the Braidwood Museum. At the time, a variety of less scrupulous individuals saw opportunities for personal enrichment without the unpleasantness of getting down and dirty in a mine shaft.

The Jingera Mob, also known as the Clarke Gang, comprising members of the Clarke and Connell clans ably assisted by their vast extended families dwelling mainly up the Gully (Jerrabattgulla) and in the surrounding mountains, began holding up coaches and general stores from about 1865. Their audacity, horsemanship and bravado was world class and the newspaper reports of their hold-ups held the entire colony transfixed with both horror and admiration for a period of about eighteen months between 1865 and 1867. So accurate was the gang’s information, so financially rewarding were their depredations, and so successful were their escapes from the forces of the law, that Braidwood briefly became the local centre of the crime universe, its name synonymous with the breakdown of law and order, and a place where decent folk lived in fear of their lives—well, in fear of their gold getting nicked at least.

The Premier of New South Wales at the time, Henry Parkes, stepped in at this point and in 1867 proclaimed the first ever Royal Commission in Australia, to Enquire into Crime in the Braidwood District. The commission sat in Braidwood, in the Court House, with details of collusion and corruption revealed, and certain magistrates and landholders named.

The Jingera Mob was largely unaffected by the legal proceedings in town, and continued to lay waste to the security arrangements of the gold convoys in transit to Sydney. But following the cold-blooded murder of four special constables near Jinden Station, after a hold-up down the coast, the Clarke brothers were betrayed by one of their own relatives. It was a huge, triumphal and good-natured cavalcade that rode with them from Berry’s Hut, beyond Jinden Creek, back to Braidwood. They were remanded in Braidwood, then went down the mountain to the Bay to go by boat to Sydney. They were tried, found guilty, and hanged at Darlinghurst Goal in June of 1867.

I always find it quite sobering to reflect on the fact that many of these bushrangers were only young men, in their twenties, and their careers as bushrangers rarely lasted little more than a couple of years. It may have seemed a colourful life they led, but it was also a very short one.

The Chinese Influence

The gold rush also saw the immigration of a large contingent of Chinese miners. At times there were as many as 2000 in the area, mainly at Jembaicumbene and Mongarlowe, and many stayed after the diggings were exhausted, having establish successful enterprises in Braidwood. Their presence thus added another element to the cultural tapestry that is Braidwood today.

The Railway that Never Was

While the discovery of gold had been a boon for Braidwood, by the late 1870s, most of the precious metal accessible to small or individual mining operations was gone. Parkes was Premier again, and he was getting the railways under way in NSW. The railway could move goods and people very efficiently and quickly, compared to horses and bullock drays, and the movement of agricultural produce could be particularly advantaged.

When the plans for a railway line to be built linking Sydney to Melbourne via inland NSW were announced, all the little towns along the way started sending delegations to Sydney, putting forward their cases for inclusion on the line. It was always going to Goulburn, and to Yass, and when he came to Braidwood in 1888 as part of the centenary of NSW celebrations, Sir Henry Parkes promised, yes, the spur line from Tarago would be built to Braidwood. (I am reliably informed that the line was going to end in Station Street—plans were already in place).

Parkes came in November, the best month climatically in Braidwood. The town gave him a huge welcome, including an official banquet at the Literary Institute (one of the organisers, in his diary, notes that it cost in excess of £60). Parkes also addressed the townsfolk from the balcony of the Albion, and my sources tell me that a choir of 500 children from the district sang the national anthem for him.

But the budget for 1889–90 was not good to Braidwood, and the railway never came south from Tarago. In many ways, this was a blessing. Braidwood became an old fashioned little backwater, a quaint, quiet place supplying the services required for the prosperous, surrounding rural district. And indeed, wool and cattle have been the long-term backbone of Braidwood’s economy.

A Stable Community

There has always been an extraordinary stability in Braidwood’s population. The town’s tribal memory is long, and there would be more than a few of you present today who had family here six, or even seven generations back, and who could tell stories relating to those generations. There is a strong sense of place and permanence in Braidwood, and it comes from families who have lived in the one area for a very long time. In fact, my sources also tell me that one of the smaller claims to fame for Braidwood is that it is the home of a family who are the last in New South Wales, if not the country, to still retain ownership and residency of their original grant of 1827. The continuity of communal memories, relationships and stories that many older Braidwood residents share is a cherished aspect of community here, and something later blow-ins, when they perceive it, can only envy.

So there was no railway, but wool was good, and while there were wars, and a great depression, still wool sustained Braidwood. With no startling economic stimulus the town just ticked over, and very few new buildings were built.

The Movie Industry

The end result was that when the movie industry established itself in Australia, and there was a need for an authentic 19th century streetscape, here was Braidwood. So, for the 1920 production of the Ralph Bolderwood classic Robbery Under Arms, interestingly one of the first novels I read at school, the film crews came to Braidwood and we provided the backdrop. And here we were again, in 1970, when Mick Jagger came to town to play ‘Ned Kelly’. Then there was ‘The Year my Voice Broke’ , in 1987, and the 1995 production of the Dad & Dave classic, ‘On Our Selection’, staring amongst others, Joan Sutherland.

And here we are today

Which brings me near enough in our little historical tour to today. Braidwood has had its ups and downs, its fortune and misfortune during the past 175 years, but it also had the endurance of its community and the enduring love of this part of the country from Mongarlowe to Majors Creek, from Nerriga to Araluen, from Bombay to Ballalaba and beyond. The names of pioneers and early settlers that would have appeared in the telephone books, if there were any back then, still appear in today’s white pages, and the names of the streets of its Georgian grid pay tribute to its pioneers. I’m certainly not going to try to list them all, because I’ll be bound to leave someone out and there’d be hell to pay!

Braidwood of 2014 is now a place to visit and enjoy for its historic charm, as well as remaining a place that attracts people to come and live. In this respect, I must also welcome the blow-ins who make the fabric of Braidwood that little bit richer—a bit of new blood is always a good thing for the gene pool.

Local Leadership

Finally I would like to acknowledge the contribution of my own local government predecessors, the long list of Municipal Mayors, Shire Presidents, and again Mayors of first the Braidwood municipality, then Tallaganda Shire, and most recently the Palerang Local Government Area. It is a privilege to be walking in their footsteps today in celebrating the 175th anniversary of our town. Although I am from over the hill, I would like to express my appreciation for the welcome that you have shown me as your Mayor

So welcome everyone. To those who have returned for the 175th anniversary celebrations, welcome back, and thank you for your contribution to Braidwood’s history. To everyone, welcome to our gathering and have a great day, or week, or however long you choose to stay.”

Pete Harrison

Palerang Mayor

Pete Harrison addresses the Foundation Day Picnic

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THEATRE: Shakespeare in Gloucester Festival

WORDS MAN: William Shakespeare.

THE Shakespeare in Gloucester Festival, now in its 16th year, has become the longest established Shakespeare festival in NSW.

As well as having performances by Newcastle’s Stooged Theatre of the Bard’s The Merchant of Venice, the festival from May8 to 10 will include performances by Gloucester’s GACCI Players of Canned Hamlet, a one-act spoof of one of Shakespeare’s best-known plays, workshops on the staging of Shakespeare’s plays by the Bell Shakespeare Theatre Company, and a Saturday Elizabethan Faire and Farmers Market in Billabong Park (just two blocks down Denison Street from the performance venue, the Gloucester Soldiers Club auditorium).

The Merchant of Venice will have daytime school performances on Thursday and Friday, May 8 and 9, with the first public performance on the Friday offering a supper that includes a ploughman’s platter at 7pm, and the show beginning at 7.30pm. Tickets are $52, senior and student 18-plus concession $42, and child under 18 $43.

There will be two performances on Saturday, May 10: a matinee at 1pm ($35, concession $30, child $15), and an evening show, which includes a dinner option, with the dinner at 6.15pm and the show at 8pm ($67; performance only $42).

Theatregoers are encouraged to wear Elizabethan fancy dress for the chance to win prizes. Bookings for the shows can be made at shakespeareingloucester苏州美甲美睫培训学校.au or on 65581408.

The GACCI Players will present two performances of Canned Hamlet at the Soldiers Club: on Thursday, May 8, at 8pm, and on Saturday, May 10, at 10.30am.

The show’s publicity notes state that life ain’t easy for Hamlet. His father is a ghost, his mother is an adulterer, and he cannot make it through a soliloquy without being interrupted.

Tickets are $5 and can be bought online or at the door.

The Bell Shakespeare workshops are at Gloucester High School Hall, in Ravenshaw Street, with public workshops on Friday and Saturday from 2pm to 4pm. Tickets (adult $15, school student $5) can be bought online.

The Saturday Elizabethan Faire and Farmers Market runs from 8.30am to 1pm, with the entertainment including jousting knights, wandering minstrels and archery. There will also be a fancy-dress competition for primary school children, with prizes for the best-dressed knight and princess.

THEATRE: Merchant of Venice

NEW TWIST: Giverny Lewis as Portia, Tim O’Donnell as Bassanio and Glen Waterhouse as Antonio in The Merchant of Venice.STOOGED Theatre has set Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice in the present day, with key characters becoming rivals for political office and a television game show being used to choose a husband for an heiress.

While Shakespeare purists might be scratching their heads, director Carl Young makes a persuasive case for the updating in the production that will be the central attraction of the May 8 to 10 Shakespeare in Gloucester Festival, with a subsequent season at Newcastle’s Civic Playhouse from June 4 to 7.

There is clearly bad blood between merchant fleet owner Antonio and Jewish moneylender Shylock in Shakespeare’s text.

But Antonio knows that Shylock has the wealth that will enable him to provide a generous loan. Antonio wants the money to give to his friend Bassanio, who is one of a number of suitors for the hand of wealthy heiress Portia.

Bassanio feels he has to match the costly gifts the others are giving Portia to have a chance of winning her hand, so Antonio, whose money is tied up in his ships, approaches Shylock for a loan.

Shylock, who is appalled by the anti-Semitic remarks he has heard Antonio make about him, agrees to provide the loan, jokingly saying that if Antonio can’t repay the money within three months he’ll have to surrender a pound of flesh from a part of his body that Shylock will choose. Antonio has to sign a legal agreement to this effect.

Carl Young said Shylock has become a banker in this production, and one who is standing for the same political post as Antonio.

And it’s clear that Antonio and others treat him as an outsider in Australian society.

Young likewise notes that Antonio is devious in the text. While he is borrowing money from Shylock, he is also helping a friend to steal Shylock’s daughter, Jessica, away.

‘‘He’s a typical politician,’’ he said.

‘‘He talks about Christian values, without following them himself.’’

Glen Waterhouse, who plays Antonio, takes up that point.

‘‘He shows one side to the public, but a different side to his friends. He’s very much a politician up front.’’

The TV game show also fits smoothly into the text, according to the director and actors.

Shakespeare has Portia forced by her late father’s will to marry the man who correctly chooses between three caskets – gold, silver and lead – the one that contains his consent for a betrothal.

In this staging, the candidates have to make their choice before television cameras, something, as the production’s Portia, Giverny Lewis, says, that’s not far removed from game shows The Farmer Wants a Wife and The Bachelorette.

Portia, in the play, is certainly fearful that some would-be suitors will make the right choice.

The Merchant of Venice, which has a smooth combination of comedy and drama, includes a broad range of characters.

Shylock (Timothy Blundell) is well aware how much bias there is against him because of his profession and religion, while his daughter, Jessica (Gabriella Stevens), is not above taking a lot of her father’s money when she elopes with Lorenzo (Luke Standen).

Bassanio (Tim O’Donnell) is so desperate to win Portia’s hand that he’ll do anything that might aid that.

Gratiano (Matt Graham), another friend of Bassanio, has his sights set on Portia’s glamorous assistant, Nerissa (Chloe Forster).

Young has made interesting changes to some of the characters.

Launcelot, Shylock’s resident fool (Theo Rule), has become a speechwriter – a change that goes well with the pointedly humorous remarks made by the man.

The cast also includes Scott Eveleigh, Joseph Issa and Joshua Yager, all of whom take part in one of theatre’s most engrossing courtroom scenes.

The Newcastle Civic Playhouse shows are nightly from Wednesday, June 4, to Saturday, June 7, at 8pm, with a 2pm Saturday matinee. Tickets: $25 to $35. Bookings: Civic Ticketek, 49291977.

Council news

Council newsCouncil seeks inquiry into Gullen Range “breaches”

UPPER Lachlan Council has asked for a full inquiry “preferably of judicial status” into “numerous breaches of conditions of consent” by Goldwind, developers of the Gullen Range wind farm.

Currently, Goldwind is seeking modification of the Project Approval from the State Department of Planning and Environment.

The modification relates to charges to turbine locations from those originally approved.

Goldwind’s request is on exhibition until Friday, May 2.

Council’s Director of Planning, Mrs Tina Dodson, reporting this to last meeting, invited comments from Councillors relevant to the application.

Cr. Malcolm Barlow obliged immediately.

He moved that Council ask for consideration of Goldwind’s application be put on hold pending a full inquiry, preferably judicial, into the developer’s “numerous breaches of conditions of construction consent, the wholesale re-siting of turbines without seeking consent, the major damage caused to one of the Shire’s main roads, and a general disregard during construction of negative impacts upon nearby non-host residents.”

This was seconded by Cr. John Searl.

Cr. Barlow said he had been asked to make this move by “many, many people in the area adversely affected by the development.”

“They feel, and I agree with them, that conditions are being breached.”

Cr. Barlow said the response given to one resident who challenged the developers on what he considered to be a breach, the response had been: “Prove it.”

He continued that three turbines had been re-located closer to non-host residents by more than a hundred metres.

“The developer sought no permission for changes. If someone did that to Council he would be asked to pull it down,” Cr. Barlow said.

“They have total disregard for the impact on near neighbours.”

Cr. Barlow described one incident where the developer sought a non-host’s permission to increase a blade length by three metres, from 45 to 48.

“The resident said no, but they went ahead and did it anyway.

“We have to stand up for our residents, and I would like to see Council take a stand to support these people.”

Mayor Cr. John Shaw: “Independent surveyors are looking at the issues at the moment. The Department won’t act until they make their report.”

Cr. James Wheelwright: “Do we have a file on these numerous breaches?”

Cr. Barlow: They could be verified.”

Cr. Brian McCormack declared an interest in the subject, and left the meeting room.

Cr. Barlow’s motion was carried with only Cr. Wheelwright voting against.

Gullen Range reps appointed

The two citizen representatives to join the Gullen Range Wind Farm Community Enhancement Committee have been appointed by Upper Local Council.

They are Crookwell businessman Mr. Floyd Davies and Naval officer Commander Stuart Taylor.

The committee will decide on the projects which will receive funding from the Community Enhancement Fund.

Mr. Davies lives in Crookwell, and Commander Taylor, who is a serving officer at Canberra, lives at Grabben Gullen.

They were chosen from a list of nine people who applied for the two positions.

The committee will be headed by Upper Lachlan Mayor Cr. John Shaw, or his delegate.

Also automatically on the committee are Upper Lachlan General Manager Mr. John Bell (or his delegate), a representative from the Gullen Range Wind Farm, and one Goulburn Mulwaree Council representative.

Mr. Bell said yesterday that no date had been set for the Committee’s first meeting, as the wind farm had not as yet announced its representative.

One of the first items on the new Committee’s agenda will be the recent offer by the Wind Farm developers to help fund construction of a tower at Crookwell to re-transmit television signals.

Landowners’ frustrations over building permit

Apparent misleading information has created a frustrating situation for two landholders near Crookwell who have had their building plans thwarted.

The land involved includes two lots, part of the small enclave of buildings near the intersection on the Binda and Boorowa Roads.

The blocks were purchased with the intention to eventually build homes on them – but the owners have now discovered that contrary to the information given by the real estate agent at the time of their purchase this is not permitted.

At last meeting of Upper Lachlan Council, Planning Director Mrs Tina Dodson confirmed that the Council LEP now did not allow residential building on the remaining blocks in the subdivision which Cr. Paul Culhane said was generally known as Bagtown.

Mrs. Dodson said that Council’s support was required, but also the support of the NSW Planning and Infrastructure would be needed.

And they were opposed to piecemeal/ad hoc rezonings – which was applicable to this area as six blocks similar to that of the applicants had also lost their building entitlements.

Cr. Brian McCormack commented: “It sounds like they’ve been hard done by, and we have to clean it up.”

Cr. Culhane supported this and added that it would be better to take action across the whole of the area.

Cr. McCormack: “This whole subdivision has been there a long time.”

Mayor Cr. John Shaw: “The real estate agent should be held to account.”

Council decided to adopt a recommendation from Mrs. Dodson that the Local Environmental Plan be amended to include all the lots to permit the erection of a dwelling house.

The applicants will be required to undertake the appropriate background studies and research required.

Mrs. Dodson also reported that reticulated sewerage was not available to the area, and appropriate disposal of effluent on the sites would have to be achieved.

Access was another consideration for some of the lots.

Time for fair slice for regions

MAYOR John Shaw has welcomed the new policy directions floated as part of the NSW Government cabinet re-shuffle and has congratulated the two Central NSW MPs on joining the Cabinet.

“It’s good news for Central NSW to have a former Centroc Board member Paul Toole as the new Local Government Minister and Troy Grant the Member for Dubbo as the new Minister for Racing, Gaming and the Arts,” Mayor John Shaw said. “It’s important to have a strong understanding of regional issues around the Cabinet table and I congratulate both Paul Toole and Troy Grant on their promotion.”

“Kevin Humphries has also shown he has a good understanding of rural communities in his former portfolio and I’m sure he’ll be bringing these abilities to bear in the new Land & Water department.”

Mayor John Shaw also wants to see the state’s new leadership team consider giving regional areas a better slice of government spending when it comes to long-term infrastructure.

“The election of the new Premier has also put talk of selling the state’s ‘poles and wires’ back on the agenda,” Mayor John Shaw said. “That specific issue will be up for the government to decide, but if it goes ahead it’s crucial that NSW hangs onto the value of major assets like these by putting that investment back into serious infrastructure.”

“In this region an investment in infrastructure for water security for urban communities is of critical importance.”

The newly appointed NSW Treasurer, the Member for Bega, Andrew Constance brings with him a wealth of experience and knowledge of the issues that dominate the regional communities. As the previous Minister for Ageing, and Finance and Services, Mr Constance is well placed to ensure the financial viability of the state of NSW and the issues presented by an ageing population.

“I congratulate Minister Pru Goward on her new position as NSW Minister for Planning as well as continuing on her outstanding role as Minister for Women,” said Mayor John Shaw. As the Member for the electorate of Goulburn, Pru Goward understands the critical issues that regional communities face with regard to planning and infrastructure needs. Her placement in the cabinet will be a great asset in communicating these needs to attain further government funding for rural NSW.

The Member for Burrinjuck, Minister Katrina Hodgkinson now takes on the role as Assistant Minster for Tourism and Major Events in the NSW Cabinet, as well as continuing on in her role as Minister for Primary Industries. “Katrina Hodgkinson has an outstanding understanding of the rural issues that face NSW regional communities having lived and worked in Yass for many years, as well as working with those involved in Primary Industries. She will continue to be a great asset to the NSW Cabinet with regard to highlighting regional issues,” said Mayor John Shaw.

Hope yet for sewerage repair funding

“THIS might be a crack in the door” was how Upper Lachlan General Manager Mr. John Bell welcomed the news that all is not yet lost for funding for flood repairs to Crookwell sewerage scheme.

In December, 2010, a huge downpour flooded the Crookwell River and Kiamma Creek at their junction, massively damaging the sewerage pipeline attached to the bridge over the stream.

Because of its urgency, repairs were made immediately, but the State Government Department refused to contribute to the cost because the sewerage scheme is considered a business operation.

Hundreds of thousands of dollars were contributed, however, to repair flood damage to roads and bridges which occurred in the same downpour.

Cost of repairing the sewer main was nearly $400,000, which Council had to bear out of its reserves.

At last Upper Lachlan meeting a letter was received from Mr. Andrew Constance, State Minister for Finance and Services.

Mr. Constance apologised for the delay in responding to Council’s application in December 2013.

He explained that the criteria for Natural Disaster Relief was set by the Commonwealth Government, which ruled that undertakings providing service on a commercial basis are not eligible.

“In spite of this I have asked NSW Public Works to request the agreement of the Commonwealth Government in categorising the trunk sewer main and its supporting suspension bridge as eligible for funding,” Mr. Constance advised.

Director of Works Mr. Phil Newham echoed Mr. Bell’s optimism: “It’s a ray of hope.”

And Mayor Cr. John Shaw added: “We’ll keep trying.”

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Friends to feature George

Friends of the Athenium, publicity officer Maria Turner and chairman Barbara Manwaring. Among the documents found at the back of Mrs Manwaring’s mother’s shed is the “Daily Sketch” which recounts King George V’s coronation, who overcomes a stutter in the film “The King’s Speech”. Picture: Declan RurengaTHE future King George may have already left the country, but the spotlight will be focusing on his predecessor at the Athenium Theatre.

The Friends of the Athenium will be showing the film The King’s Speech on May 10 and based on a true story, it reveals how King George V overcame his stutter.

Showing the movie is not about revelling in the recent royal visit however, with the Friends of the Athenium (FOTA) committing to donate the profits from the screening to Cooinda Court’s fire sprinkler retrofit project.

“We wanted to embrace and be a part of the fund-raising efforts in town,” FOTA publicity officer Maria Turner said.

“They (Cooinda Court) have a big job ahead of them and this is just one of the many fund-raisers planned,” she said.

Even if residents had seen the film, Mrs Turner encouraged them to view it again.

“We’d like to see a big turnout to help raise as much money as possible,” she said.

FOTA have used previous movie screenings to invest in the film experience at the theatre and have purchased more comfortable seats.

“It’s a chance to be a part of the community effort and to show off the theatre,” chairman Barbara Manwaring said.

Mrs Manwaring said the choice of the film was just a coincidence with the royal visit.

The King’s Speech

Saturday May 10 from 7pm

A light supper will be servedand refreshments will beavailable to buy

Tickets: Adults $15 and children $10

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Going, going …

o The kindest cut: Jess Moor is shedding her locks to help find a cure for cancer this Saturday following the Australian Celtic Festival street parade.

As the Australian Celtic Festival gears up, local mum Jess Moor is planning to lop off her long locks this Saturday, May 3, in support of the Leukaemia Foundation’s research towards a cancer cure.

Aiming to raise more than $1000, Ms Moor said she will be going under the barber’s scissors at the front of the Coffee Incident Café on Grey Street this weekend, immediately following the festival parade.

“It is something I have always wanted to do,” she said.

“And now is a really good time to do it.”

Calling for locals and visitors to donate their spare change to the cause, Ms Moor said she will be on Grey Street from 8.30am with a barbecue breakfast donated by local business houses and all proceeds to be put towards the fundraising goal.

Already banking approximately $500 towards the cause, Ms Moor said local personality Tamara Ferguson has made a significant contribution and has won the opportunity to wield the clippers on the day.

“Why should I be so precious about my hair?” Ms Moor said.

“Mine will grow back and I want to support those people who are suffering.”

With plans to invest in a healthy collection of beanies for the winter, Ms Moor is already well into the fundraising efforts in the lead up to the big event.

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Call for more library funding

o Library lovers: Glen Innes Library staff members Navanka Fletcher, Kate Cooper, Alex Sanderson, Kerry Byrne and Phil Hine are keen to see the balance of local and state government funding return to regional libraries to develop thriving community social spaces.Following a successful application for a portion of the Library Council of NSW’s $2 million Revitalising Regional Libraries grant allocation, the Glen Innes Library is moving toward the establishment of more social spaces, according to Library and Learning Centre manager Kerry Byrne.

After securing $16,000 in Library Council of NSW grant funding, Ms Byrne said the local library is focused on developing a multi-purpose social facility, incorporating services aimed at reaching a broad cross-section of the community.

As funds are directed toward the purchase of new chairs and signage for the community facility, Ms Byrne said grant funding combined with regional libraries’ movement towards pooling resources and cooperative programs, have advanced the services on offer at community libraries across the region.

In a long term focus, Ms Byrnes said last week that the Glen Innes Library, in coordination with libraries across the state, will be moving heavily into the new state government lobbying initiative Library Lovers Vote Too.

With an eye to addressing underfunding from the state government, Ms Byrne and local library staff are joining with libraries across the state, urging residents and library lovers to sign the in-house petition to be presented to state government.

Specifically focusing on the inequity of funding between local and state governments, Ms Byrne said that from the state government Library Act 1939, the balance of state and local government library funding has moved from an equal 50:50 balance to local governments now funding 93 per cent of library advancements.

With the state government currently providing seven cents in every dollar of library funding, Ms Byrne said regional libraries are considerably underfunded with significant advancements in services becoming increasingly scarce.

In response to the campaign release, state government member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall said that increased funding in the form of a number of public library infrastructure funds and allocations towards the development of new regional library services are currently under consideration for the 2014/15 state government budget.

Mr Marshall said that, while all levels of government are currently under budgetary pressure, he is hopeful of seeing funding relief for regional libraries and local governments in the new financial year.

While Mr Marshall said regional libraries offer an highly valuable service to their respective communities, the skew of state and local government funding has occured over the past 30 to 40 years, with the current state government bugetary consideration hopeful of addressing the funding inequity.

Mr Marshall said that while the regular funding allocation for public libraries has been carried forward to the new 2014/15 budget, there have been significant funds allocated to the development of regional libraries with $4 million to be allocated over the next four years to

regional library revitalisation and further $2 million to be rolled out for the development of regional library Wi-Fi hotspots.

As the 2014/15 state government budget is considered, Mr Marshall said that from his years in local government he is very aware of the pressure on the state’s public libraries and is hopeful of seeing relief in coming budgets.

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Low scores boost Hodson

CHASING A HAT-TRICK: Reece Hodson with the Bathurst Golf Club Championship A grade trophy after his 2011 tournament victory. Photo: ZENIO LAPKA 041411zgolfAFTER a relatively lengthy break prior to a return to regular golf a couple of months ago, Bathurst player Reece Hodson could haveeasily gone into the Bathurst Club Championships with low expectations.

The only thing low about his first two rounds on Saturday and Sunday though were his scores, and he will go into the second half of the A grade event this weekend with amassive eight-shot lead.

Hodson, playing off minus two, shot a scrambling 71 on Saturday to sit at even par and he backed it up with a brilliant 68 thefollowing day to move to three-under.

He is well clear of youngster Dylan Thompson, and given his experience as a two-time former champion, as well as his time spent playing top level pennants with The Australian Club in Sydney, it looks a virtualformality for the leader.

“I was probably a bit scrappy on Saturday, I had five birdies and five bogeys so it was very up-and-down but I managed to get a decent enough score out of it,” he said.

“In round two things felt a lot better, and I holed some really good putts, three-under was a good score and set me up nicely.

“It is nice to shoot those scores but I just wanted to play some consistent golf, and I’d be happy enough if I could do that again in rounds three and four.”

While he has one hand seemingly on his third club championship, Hodson, more than anyone, should know that nothing is a given when it comes to this tournament.

The right-hander himself stormed home on the back of a brilliant 66 to make up a seven shot deficit in 2010, and 12 months later he trailed Paul Bright by six shots going into the last two rounds and still managed to claimvictory.

Hodson said he does not know a lot about Thompson, or what he is capable of, andsimply focused on posting a couple of good rounds himself to finish.

“I’ve had a big break from playing and I’ve only been back on the course for a few months so things are still coming along,” he said.

“I must say though, it would be nice to be able to say at the end of it all that I led from start to finish and really strung four good days of golf together, rather than having to come from well back and also have the other guys drop off a bit. If I win it will be a bonus, provided that I play the sort of rounds I want to.

“To be honest I don’t really know Dylan or know a lot about him, and I haven’t had much of a look at the leaderboard. It is up to me to play my game and just worry about my own golf.

“There are a lot of good golfers in the field with plenty of talent, so on a given day I’m sure there are some capable there of posting a very low score, if they can post two of them it will still put some pressure on me.”

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