Happy farmers
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THE farmers should be feeling happy about the rain we’ve had during the past week. The dams are looking much fuller and creeks and rivers are flowing more freely than they have for a while. The lawn-mowing services must be happy, also, as the grass is looking much thicker and growing very well and those who depend on tank water must be content, too, with a good to-up to their water supplies.

Something to think about

OF course the rain helps all ground cover to grow along with the scrub and the trees in the bush areas which increases the risk of bush and grass fires with the hotter months yet to come. I must say I was very pleased to read the Chronicle’s spread on preparations and advice for the upcoming summer months last week. It mentioned the use of swimming pools as static water supplies which can be the difference between saving a home and losing it to a fire. I assume that everyone would agree it’s easier and cheaper to refill even an in-ground pool than rebuild your home despite top of the range insurance.

With this in mind I am going to suggest that it might be sensible for those on larger holdings to have a sketch of their property with all dams, streams, water-holding gullies and the river (if applicable), etc marked on it which they could provide to the fire brigades in the area so time, which is of the essence to fire-fighters, is not wasted searching or travelling longer distances to water supplies they know of when they need water in a hurry either to save your stock and other property or your neighbours.

The AIDER service is a service which the RFS has in place to assist those who are unable for whatever reason to prepare their property for the bushfire season. Maybe it’s time to think how the public can provide a way to assist these volunteers when they need it in return. It is not always possible for your local brigade to attend a fire in your area as the members could be out somewhere else assisting with a fire so even if your local members know your property and where to go for water a visiting brigade would not. Think about this and make a map, even if you refuse to give a copy to the RFS brigades out of your area to keep, it could save your property, your neighbour’s property or even someone’s life in a crisis situation. Imagine how much relief it would be if Fire Comm. could just tell a brigade to call at the house or, if you’ve vacated the property, where they can lay hands on “a mud map” of your property which can help them do a quicker job of putting out a threatening blaze.

Vale Cliffy

I was saddened to hear of the passing of the last surviving male member of one of the pioneering families of the Cundle Flat area, Clifton (Cliffy) Smith on Friday, November 6. His funeral service was held on the following Monday , November 10 at 9.30am in Wingham.

Cliffy resided at Wingham Court at the time of his passing and had reached the 80th year of his life. He is survived by his sister, Valma and his two sisters-in law, Gwen and Margaret, are still with us. He had five nieces and a nephew, also, along with their respective families who will miss him in the coming years, I’m sure. To his remaining family and his friends we all send condolences on his passing and hope they have many happy memories to keep of times spent with him over his lifetime.

Birthday round-up

THE first name on my list this week is Mitchell Smith who mightn’t feel much like celebrating yet. He is joined by David Dick, Hunter Barbour and George Cassar.

All their family members and friends send best wishes for their birthdays and wish them well in the coming year. It is hoped the weather gods are kind to any of them who are having outside celebrations for their special days. With the age range I’d say the celebrations will be rather varied in format.

Happy anniversary wishes are sent out to Sue and Bob McKay this week. All your friends from Mt George wish you both health and happiness for another year and hope to be able to send the same wishes to you next year. Have a wonderful day.

School of Arts Reserve Trust invitation

THERE will be a children’s Christmas party held at the community hall on Saturday, November 28 commencing at 10am. I would think most of you would have noticed the signs along Nowendoc Road by now. All community members are invited to come along and help the children celebrate.

There will be games and prizes for the children and a visit from Father Christmas. A hamper raffle will be held and there will also be a sausage sizzle where you can buy a sausage sandwich ($2) and a can of soft drink ($2) so mum doesn’t have to cook lunch when you get back home.

The community markets are being held the same day so while someone else keeps the youngsters entertained mum and/or dad can browse among the stalls and look for a bargain without the usual “Can I have ?..?” or “How much longer are we going to be here?” Who knows, you just might find that one elusive gift you need for a hard-to-buy-for person on your Christmas list while the youngsters are happily engaged elsewhere.

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THE Men4Life (M4L) James Bond Spectre movie fundraiser on Thursday night at the Nowra Roxy was a smashing success.
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The event was a sell out,thanks to the event organiser M4L secretary Jason D Cox.

Before the screening of the James Bond movie the audience was entertained with a fun auction and lucky door prize give always.

It was great to see so many dress up for the theme of James Bond with the winners of the fancy dress going to Phil and Wendy Reid.

The night was also a opportunity for M4L support group to celebrate eleven years of supporting men in the Shoalhaven.

All proceeds from the night go a long way with assisting with the support group’s weekly meetings and Reconnect Camps, as M4L are unfunded and rely on community support.

The night was such a fun and successful event and we look forward to doing it again next year.

At the Men 4 Life (M4L) movie fundraiser are Jason D Cox (M4L Secretary), Mark Wilson, Michael Bett (M4L Vice) and David Simister (M4L President).

Jason D Cox and Greg Mcleod (Nowra Rotary) enjoy themselves at the Jame Bond movie night.

Helena Simister, David Simister (M4L President), Mr Fitzgerald, Tony Fitzgerald, Jenny Woods at the James Bond movie night.

Phil and Wendy Reid are the James Bong movie night’s fancy dress winners.

Having a great night at the James Bond movie night are David Simister, Peter Hallett, Rob Cooke (M4L treasurer).

Veronica Jane Terrassin, Jeanmarie Andrews and Lizzy Pie are set for a great night at the movies.

Jason D Cox and Phil Reid ready to go the flicks

Jason D Cox and Tony Fitzgerald ham it up at the James Bong movie night.

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Surf Report with John Veage Early morning gold.Picture John Veage
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Dawn cracks the line.Picture John Veage

My (Greg Nash’s) G&S at the Alley.Picture John Veage

Wet for the first time in 20 years.Picture John Veage

Set out the back.Picture John Veage

Sneaky bank near the rock pool.Picture John Veage

Fish fingerling throwing his arms like his old man.Picture John Veage

Pumping!

Hasnt got her hair wet yet.Picture John Veage

Ankle high-swellnet got it right.Picture John Veage

Cruz Mckee-ripping it up.Picture John Veage

This is what the beack looks like.Picture John Veage

“Back in my day”.Picture John Veage

Damien Hardman (North Narrabeen) missed out.Picture Ethan Smith / Surfing NSW

Layne Beachley (Freshwater).Picture Ethan Smith / Surfing NSW

sneaky old salt -Russel Molony (North Shelly) Picture Ethan Smith / Surfing NSW

Volcom team rider Kyuss King taking to the sky(Picture:Christie)

Destination Tweed -DanSinclair.Picture Ethan Smith / Surfing NSW

Kelia Moniz two-time World Longboard Champion headbutted the deck. Picture: WSL/Will H-S

This is a woman! Picture Tim McKenna

Escondido in all its glory-Pedro Calado.Picture Daniel Nava

The paddle out is a bit hard-Nazare.Picture Helio Antonio

mySURF.tv host Ronnie Blakey chats with Billabong Team Rider Felicity Palmateer on set. Picture Surfing Australia / Nikon

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A 23-year-old woman found injured in a Mornington Island laneway yesterday afternoon was airlifted to Mount Isa Base Hospital for treatment to serious head and arm injuries.
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Police attended a laneway located between Mukakiya and Jimbarn streets around 5pm following reports of a disturbance involving a man and woman.

Police will allege the woman was assaulted with a stick and rock, causing several large lacerations to her head and face, as well as possible facial fractures and an arm fracture.

A 25-year-old man was arrested by police and charged with one count of grievous bodily harm.

He has been remanded in police custody and is due to appear in the Mount Isa Magistrates Court today

The man and woman, both from Mornington Island, were known to each other.

– Source: Queensland Police Media.

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BUILD-UP: The road to the Magic Millions has been paved with feature racedays, with the Brisbane Racing Club alone to host 12 Black Type Races before December 19.AUSTRALIA’S richest raceday, 17 Black Type races and 11 individual feature race meetings are the headline acts of a revamped 2015/16 Queensland Summer Racing Carnival which began last Saturday, November 14 at Doomben Racecourse with the Listed Keith Noud Handicap (1200m).
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The road to the Magic Millions has been paved with feature racedays, with the Brisbane Racing Club alone to host 12 Black Type Races between November 14 and December 19.

The Gold Coast Turf Club will host Magic Millions Preview Day on Boxing Day, headlined by three feature races and three ‘wildcard’ races for horses hoping to qualify for Australia’s richest raceday – the $10 Million Jeep Magic Millions Raceday on Saturday, January 9. Doomben will also host a ‘wildcard’ race on Saturday, December 19, with the winner of the Listed Bernborough Handicap (1600m) gaining automatic qualification for the Magic Millions Trophy/Stayers Cup (1800m).

Jeep Magic Millions Race Day provides $10 million in prize money over nine races, spearheaded by the $2 million 2YO Classic (1200m) and $2 Million 3YO Guineas (1400m) along with five other races worth $1 million each. The Sunshine Coast Turf Club will also host two feature meetings during the Queensland Summer Racing Carnival, with the 2YO Classic Plate on January 16 and the Sunshine Coast Cup on January 26.

Racing Queensland racing operations manager Ross Gove said the feature race days programmed for the coming months would provide the perfect lead-up ahead of the Jeep Magic Millions Raceday.“While the revamp of the Queensland Summer Racing Carnival has been reasonably subtle, there can be no question that the flow of Black Type races programmed will provide excellent pathways for horses to peak for rich ‘grand finals’ in late December and ultimately the Magic Millions Raceday. The carnival’s profile gains impetus at Doomben on December 12 with four Black Type races programmed that will undoubtedly unearth some serious Magic Millions contenders in the 2YO and 3YO ranks,” he said.

“The Boxing Day meeting at the Gold Coast provides a tremendous pipe-opener for the Magic Millions Raceday a fortnight later and also the ‘Wildcard’ races on the Boxing Day card add great intrigue to that race day. This season’s Magic Millions meeting is unprecedented in regards its prize money, but it is also certain to attract a massive amount of profile from within and outside of the Racing Industry.”

Plenty of zip in veteranVETERAN 8YO gelding Steel Zip added another feature win to his impressive record when he came from a near hopeless position to win the listed Keith Noud Handicap (1200m) at Doomben on Saturday, November 14.

The late driving win from Steel Zip denied 68-year-old veteran rider Tony Erhart from being the oldest jockey to win a metropolitan race in Brisbane when he and his mount Top Tone were nosed out on the post.

Winning trainer Pat Duff was delighted with the win of the stable stalwart – a horse who had a great connection with his wife Dinah who died from cancer three years ago. “There was some emotion as it was Dinah’s last horse and I also felt sad for Tony (Erhart). Tony rode Steel Zip work during the week and if I had any disappointment it was beating Tony – we’ve been friends for a lot of years,” Duff said.

Steel Zip was bred and sold by Daandine Stud for $13,000 at the 2009 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale. The Duff stable has prepared the gelding to 11 wins and 17 placings from 67 starts and earnings of more than $780,000.

He is one of three winners produced by the Brisbane 2YO winning Cossack Warrior mare Zip. His sire Canadian Silver was a Group 2 winner in Canada who has produced four stakes winners – the others being Make Mine Magic, Top Marc and Canadian Time.

First winner by MeldROYAL Academy sire Meld was represented by his first winner at the Gold Coast on November 3.

Thoroughbred Breeders Queensland Association webpage reports that the Mel Eggleston trained gelding Mini Meld accelerated to a five length victory on debut in the Highgrove Bathrooms Plate (900m). Mel’s brother Andrew Eggleston stands Meld in the Gold Coast hinterland at Numinbah Valley. “I bought him off Lloyd Williams for $40,000 at a tried horse sale. I was originally going to export him to Thailand but there delays due to swine flu so I kept him here. There was another opportunity to send him to Thailand later on but I wasn’t going to let him go after seeing his first foals. He really stamps them,” he said.

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Thornton newsagent Wayne Hackett chased off armed thief.A masked man brandishing a knife has attempted to rob Thornton Newsagency in broad daylight.
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When the offender entered the newsagency on Tuesday November 17, owner Wayne Hackett went straight on the defence to protect his business and the customers milling around the shop.

“There were two customers and kids outside coming home from school,” Mr Hackett said.

“I saw him put the knife up, it was probably 200 millimetres long.

“I just picked up my baseball bat, put it in the trigger position and off he went.”

The offender fled the scene within seconds of entering the building about 4pm.

One of the customers gave chase, but the offender jumped inside a waiting getaway car, which took off in a cloud of dust.

This is the third time the newsagency has been targeted by armed intruders in just 12 months.

“We were held up almost 12 months ago so since that day I have had the bat here,” Mr Hackett said.

“We are not in a shopping centre and there are plenty of ways to get away, I think that’s why they go for us.

“I might get some additional cameras after this one.”

A witness to the incident told The Mercury that hewas on his way home from the train station when he sawthe attempted robbery.

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Fresh flavours: Clayton Donovan at work combining cheese, macadamia nuts and other ingredients for a dish at his Jaaning Tree restaurant.Australia’sonly “hatted” indigenous chef and the host of ABC TV’s Wild Kitchen program will be cooking up a storm at the Hastings Co-op Department Store on Saturday.
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The renowned chef and restaurateur will conduct a cooking demonstration from 11am to 1pm.

For five years Clayton operated The Jaaning Tree Restaurant in Nambucca Heads, but these days he creates his amazing food at “pop-up restaurants”, corporate functions and public and private events and passes on his skills and unique knowledge at cooking schools.

While operating his restaurant Clayton won a prestigious Australian Good Food Guide Chef hat four years in a row.

Clayton grew up on Gumbaynggirr and Bundjalung land on the Mid North Coast and started learning about native produce when he was four years old out walking with his aunties and grandmothers, taking what they found in the bush or along the coastline and cooking it up at their homes.

Bush tucker flavours are one of the strongest trends in the global food scene at present, Clayton says, with the world’s top restaurants getting on the bandwagon.

There is a lot of interest internationally in what is happening in Australia with Indigenous foods and local cooking shows and up-and-coming young chefs often include bush food ingredients in their menus.

He just happened to get involved with these marvellous flavours and ingredients earlier than the others and has a lot of experience.

Clayton says he can understand chefs around the world getting interested in Australian native food flavours – “it’s like having a whole new bag of tricks to play with”, he says. The popular chef is no stranger to the Wauchope area, having cooked for this year’s Meals in the Fields banquet at Hollisdale’s Near River farm, using local produce for the multi-course gourmet event.

Clayton is planning to use more local produce for The Department Store cooking demonstration, combined with finger limes and warrigal greens for another of his distinctive delicious dishes.

He hopes people attending the demonstrations will “have fun” and take home some new ideas for incorporating bush food ingredients into their family meals.

“It’s Australian, it’s sustainable and it makes a lot more sense than just using imported ingredients,” he says.

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Today isGo Home On Time Day, and Beyond Blue is urging everyone to knock off at theirrostered time and consider whether yourwork/life balance is healthy — or perhaps address reasons that may be keeping you at work, day in day out.
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According to Beyond Blue, around60% of Aussieswork extra hours to meet the expectations of theirjob. Some people may find it satisfying and rewarding to put in long hours at work however, this can affect your mental and physical health — and also your relationships.

It’s up to both employers and employees to discuss expectations so that everyone’s clear on workloads, priorities and deadlines — and the resources available to complete tasks.

For some tips on how you can ensure you’re out the door on time today, or how to take care of your mental health at work, visit Heads Up.

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THE next chapter in Strike Force Croci, the crackdown on illegal drugs in the Shoalhaven, played out in Nowra Local Court on Tuesday.
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Twenty-two people, facing a variety of drug related offences, charged as part of the seven-month operation, appeared before Magistrate Dr Gabriel Fleming.

The charges include the supply a prohibited drug on an ongoing basis which is strictly indictable, supply a prohibited drug indictable quantity (not cannabis) and with taking part in the supply of prohibited drugs a commercial quantity strictly indictable – some of these charges carry a maximum sentence of 25 years.

Edward Cruickshank, 46, of Socrates Place, Worrigee; Jason Keith Aitken, 38, of the Gateway Caravan Park, Pleasant Way, Nowra; Danny Alexander Goodwin, 45, of Cockbourne Place, Vincentia; and Jason Gerald Murray, 42, of Torridon Street, East Nowra were all refused bail and will reappear in Nowra Local Court on December 8.

Megan Maree Brown, 39, of McKay Street, Nowra; Khan Daniel Paap, 28, of Lumea Street, Sanctuary Point; Arthur David McLeod, 40, of Parnell Road, Tomerong; and Pierre Davaine, 32, of Paluma Way, Nowra each had their bail continued and will return to court on December 8.

Robert Lindon Smith, 49, of Wallace Street, Nowra; Katherine Jane Davison, 24, of Katela Avenue, Bomaderry; Terry Wayne Acton, 40, of Sanctuary Point Road, Sanctuary Point; Lupco Iloiski, 44, of Platypus Way, Blackbutt; Clint Usher, 33, of Pleasant Way, Nowra; Michael Dennis Healy, 49, of North Street, Nowra; Jamie William Pierce, 30, of Carver Circuit, St Georges Basin; Thomas Martin Smith, 28, of Quiberon Street, Nowra; Brett Edward George, 46, of Oxford Street, South Nowra; Jesse Raymond Craig, 45, of Oxford Street, South Nowra; andDean James Collier, 36, of no fixed place of abode were all refused bail and will reappear in Nowra Local Court on January 19, 2016.

Brian Arthur Braddick, 35, of Quiberon Street, Nowra; Trevor Braddick, 32, of Hillcrest Avenue, Nowra; and Chad Oxford, 35, of Leumeah Street, Sanctuary Point each had their bail continued and will return to court on January 19.

A total of 44 people have been charged as a result of Strike Force Croci’s operation.

Eleven of those charged have either entered guilty pleas or been found guilty, with nine now sentenced.

They have received various sentences including fines, good behaviour bonds and ordered to undertake community service orders.

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LOW scoreswere the theme of theweekend’s Far South Cricket Association A grade competition.
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QUICK WICKETS: Tyrone Thomas picked up 3/27 with the ball in Eden’s three wicket win over the Bega/Angledale Bulls on Saturday.

Eden’sIsaac Walker demolished the Bega/Angledale batsmen andfollowed up his 5/19 last week with a stunning 4/6 off just four overs, including one maiden.

The Bega/Angledale Bulls batted first at Eden Cricket Ground andslumped to be all out for 77 off just 26 overs.

Walker has an outstanding strike rate this season and has picked up a wicket with every 10 balls bowled.

Bega’s Glen Willcox top scored with a more-than-crucial 30, with the next highest scorer Lachlan Sims with 13 – and sundries with 12.

The Bulls were in trouble early at 3/19 before Willcox dragged the Bulls out of serious trouble.

For Eden, Tyrone Thomas picked up 3/27 with the ball and Reece Wheeler snagged 2/16.

Chasing a small target is not always easy and in response the Bulls quickly had Eden 3/23 before the match-savingWheeler came to the crease.

When he was run out, Eden was cruising to victory at3/64 before losing four wickets for no run and staggering to a much-needed victory by just threewickets.

The Merimbula Knights Cricket Clubheld on to top spot on the Far South Cricket Association ladder with a victory against Pambula on Saturday.

Knights opening bowler Brayden MacDonald claimed six Pambula wickets for just 17 runs to insure victory.

Batting first at the Pambula Beach Ground Merimbula were in a strong position at 3/125 before losing five wickets for just 23 runs late in the inningsandcrawling to 9/184 off their 40 overs.

Dylan Jordan playing his first game of the season topped scored with 37 at the top of the order, before being caught and bowled by Charlie Baker.

Bakerpicked up 3/42 off seven overs whileBrendon Gordon was the pick of the bowlers with 3/27.

A number of Merimbula batsman got starts with none able to convert that into a big score.

Ashley Postance with 32,Jacob MacDonald with 27 andLincoln Rixon-Petty with 29 all made contributions.

The Bluedogs were set a task of 4.6 runs per over for victory and captain Tom Hammond looked to settle the innings with 29.

When he fell to Braydenthe Bluedogs 141 runs were still required for victory.

Brayden was unstoppable claiming the first six Bluedogswickets to fall, leaving Pambula reeling at 6/53.

Postance picked up 2/4 late in the innings to have Pambula all out for 92 off just 28 overs.

Brayden now has 12 wickets from four games this season at an average of 5.92, an economy rate of just 2.22 and the team captain claims a wicket with every 16 deliveries.

Merimbula now sits on top of the ladder with 46 points.

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Hot weather advice from St John Ambulance. Video: SMH
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4.45pm:Temperatures hit the mid 30s across the Illawarra onWednesday, surpassing forecast maximums and delivering a taste of what’s to come.

After a warm start to the day, themercury climbedto a high of36.4degrees in Albion Park at 4.25pm.

Coastal temperatures weren’t far behind, with a top of36.1degrees recordedat the Bellambi Point weather station just minutes earlier.

A gusty southerly change is expected to movethrough the region on Wednesday evening, cooling Thursday temperatures to 29degrees on the coast and 32 inland.

Friday will be a hot and sunny 38 degrees in Wollongong and a degree warmer at Albion Park.

The above-average temperaturesarebeing caused bydry and increasingly hot air from central Australia being drawn into NSW.

University of Wollongong students beat the heat with a dip in the ocean off City Beach on Wednesday. Picture: Adam McLean

2.30pm:Temperatures have surpassed 35 degrees across the Illawarra early Wednesday afternoon.

According to the Bureau of Meteorology, the mercury climbed to 35.8degrees in Albion Park at 2.25pm.

On the coast, the temperature hit 35.3at the Bellambi Point weather station about 2.15pm.

10.45am:Illawarra, are you starting to feel the heat?

The mercury isrising across the region on Wednesday morning –a sign of what’s to come overthe next few days.

By 10.30am, temperatures havealready reached 31.3 degrees inAlbion Park and 29.5 degreesat Bellambi Pointon the coast.

The temperatures are nudging Wednesday’s forecast maximums of 34 and 32 degrees, respectively.

The Bureau of Meteorology says Wollongong can expect a sunny Wednesday.

Light winds will become west to northwesterly in the late morning.

Afternoon north-easterly seabreezes are possible before a gusty southerly change.

The changewill keep a lid on Thursday’s temperatures, with29 degrees the expected top in Wollongong.

Friday will be a hot and sunny 38 degrees on the coast and 39 inland.

What are you doing to keep cool? Let everyone else know by sending your pictures to [email protected]南京夜网419论坛, post them on our Facebook page [email protected] on Twitter or Instagram.

ALBION PARK

Wednesday –34°C

Thursday –32°C

Friday –39°C

Saturday –23°C

BELLAMBI

Wednesday–32°C

Thursday–29°C

Friday–38°C

Saturday–22°C

KIAMA

Wednesday– 31°C

Thursday– 29°C

Friday– 37°C

Saturday– 22°C

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Walking path aliabilityI write in regard to works carried out at Russell Square, Brown Hill. Council has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to upgrade facilities. New Soccer rooms used 6 months a year at most, new Netball court used infrequently, new cricket pitches again occasional use and now I see $250,000 to be spent on training lights.The Council can mow the ovals weekly and sometimes twice weekly for these activities to occur.
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But despite frequent contact with Council about the state of the walking track that runs around Russell Square and the dangerous situation, I can get no response. The track is used daily by dozens of people but Council has allowed it to deteriorate to a narrow excuse of a path.

Inaddition the above mentioned works have taken their toll with heavy machinery chewing it up continually. It is now a sunken walking trap. Recently a lady was badly injured when trying to step aside to allow runners to go past and tripped on the raised edges. She suffered substantial injuries including massive facial contusions, broken facial bones and cracked ribs, and she is not the only casualty. Still Council have not even the courtesy to reply and arrogantly do nothing about the danger. Wash-aways, exposed rocks and overgrown edges show Councils lack of maintenance, and all together make a recipe for disaster. Come on Council, do your job.

NEGLECT: Despite a small fortune poured into the upgrade of Russell Square, the walking track continues to deteriorate.

Kevin Holloway,Brown Hill.​

We pay taxes for a reasonI don’t mind paying tax. Part of a civilised society is the community at large contributing to governments carrying out projects and providing services for that community. Generally, the prevailing attitude is to denigrate governments and the fact that we are required to pay taxes to those governments – this is a very dangerous and damaging attitude to adopt in a society that regards itself as democratic. Much of our financial advice is based on how to minimise tax payments; e.g.: witness the current debate on reducing the tax minimisation approach to the use of superannuation – clearly an unintended consequence behind the whole concept of superannuation. The tax avoidance ‘industry’ is a very pointed example of people’s and companies’ disdain for meeting their obligations to contribute to the welfare of and provision of services to the broader community. The real issue about paying taxes is whether or not the revenue is being well used; this is where people can use their influence: letting parliamentarians and governments know how they would like their money used.

Hedley Thomson, Canadian

Tourist centre needs accessI do agree wholeheartedly with the expressions of Gerald Jenzen and Lorraine Collishaw with comments on 12/11/2015 with the idea the Civic Hall is ideal central place for this facility to be situated. We all know this, so why not let it happen. We have other venues for major events, as we know, sport, conferences, conventions and business major facilities available.Please let this facility be adapted for use of our minor needs but let it it be our hub for ‘Tourist Ballarat’ and our most accessible tourist friendly centre for visitors.

Anne Smail. Alfredton

Halting radicalisation through workA key tool could be more job opportunities for the unskilled and the poorly educated. Regrettably, the minds in treasury, conservative think tanks and government extend no further than Classical Free Market Economics 101, and have driven the shutdown of nearly all our manufacturing industry. With that shutdown, opportunities for meaningful work for thousands also went out the door. The government now needs a”knowledge economy” bolstered with more jobs for those with limited skills and education. .

Colin Simmons, Woodend

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Tears of joy: Harold and Joy Bultin have sponsored more than 20 children over the years, but share a special bond with Milton Das, who they were reunited with last week.Rawemotion erupted when local couple Harold and Joy Butlin finally got to meet the Bangladeshi “boy” they had sponsored since age four last week.
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Nearly 40 years later, the Butlins got to hold the boy “from the other side of the world” who they watched grow up through photos and school reports.

“Never in a million years” did the lifelong friends think they would get to meet.

“It was a very emotional greeting,” Mrs Butlin admitted.

“Milton just put his arms out and said “Hello ma” (Bangladesh for mother).”

Milton Das agreed it was a “surreal and happy moment”.

“I re-tell the story (of his sponsorship) often because I am so grateful to Australians,” he said.

“There were lots of children in the same village as me growing up who didn’t have any opportunities in their lives.”

When Milton was just four, his father died of liver cancer, leaving his heavily pregnant mother to care for him and his two-year-old brother.

Wanting to ensure he was educated, Milton’s mother sought help at a local Seventh Day Adventist school, where Asian Aid Organisation’s sponsors offered a lifeline.

It was here that Milton’s sponsorship story began.

The special bond between the Butlins and their Bangladeshi sponsor child continued right through his schooling.

Milton not only completed a degree in education, but went on to gain his Masters in Education through distance learning.

During all of this, Milton and the Butlins had intermittent contact and updates through Asian Aid.

Milton even sent the Butlins an invite to his wedding.

These momentos, along with hundreds of black and white photos of Milton growing up, are preserved in a photo album treasured by the Butlins.

More recently, the power of social media has allowed them to keep in touch, share family photos and plan their Aussie reunion.

Milton is now the director of Bangladesh Children’s Sponsorship Services (BCSS), Asian Aid’s implementing partner in Bangladesh.

His own experiences have driven him to devote his life to serving young people through education, and he finds joy in working with underprivileged children despite attractive work opportunities and salaries in other places.

“Visiting our schools, and seeing the childrens’ smiles of gratitude and thankfulness, is the most enjoyable part about working in this field,” he said.

“Investing in education is the greatest medium to change people’s lives, positively and permanently.

“Asian Aid is planting the seed of love and care for children and young people’s education that will bear fruit tomorrow.”

Indeed, there could be no better endorsement for Asian Aid than Milton himself.

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