New England Focus i142

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Tour de Rocks

March 2019. issue 142

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Welcome to the March edition of New England FOCUS.

nternational Women’s Day will be celebrated on March 8, with the theme this year being #BalanceforBetter. Better the balance; balance the world ... It’s an opportunity to celebrate all the wonderful women we know and their achievements, while still working towards a more gender-balanced world. Of course, March also marks our annual Women in Business edition, where we highlight the amazing women who live, work and raise their families in New England. We’re excited to showcase so many beautiful ladies in this issue - women who work across a broad array of industries, and some in fields you wouldn’t expect! Thank you for sharing your stories with FOCUS.

contacts. ADDRESS 3/164 Beardy Street, Armidale NSW 2350 PHONE (02) 6771 5551 WEB FACEBOOK IG focus.mag E

On the Cover Do you know these stars? If not, you can “meet” them inside this edition. Michelle McKemey, Cindy McRae and Tina Skipper are all equally passionate about their businesses, although they work in a variety of occupations. They’re women who epitomise the backbone and forwardthinking mentality required of living on the land - and we’re proud to call them locals. In this Issue It’s almost time for the annual Tour de Rocks event, which raises money for cancer research. This event has raised over $1.5 million dollars since it began in 2010! Kay Endres, Co-chair of the event, has completed the ride every year; she tells us a little more about what we can expect this year.

We chat with Savannah Roberts, who plans to follow her dreams and pursue dance as a career once she leaves school. And we also catch up with Armidale local Hayley Whitehill, who’s currently enjoying some time in Scotland as an exchange student. Hayley’s a Highland Dancer and plays the bagpipes, so what better country for her to visit! Final Say “ A woman is like a teabag ... you can’t tell how strong she is, until you put her in hot water.” - Eleanor Roosevelt.


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Comments and opinions of our contributors do not necessarily reflect the opinion or view of the Publishers. All reasonable efforts have been made to trace copyright holders. Information appearing in Focus is believed to be correct at the time of going to press, however no liability will be held for inaccurate information approved or supplied by advertisers or contributors. While all care is taken it is recommended that readers confirm material including advice with individual businesses and industry professionals. Articles marked as 'Interview or Contributor' are non-sponsored content. Greater Port Macquarie Focus is published by Creative House Publications PTY LTD ABN: 621 287 8600 5. Material in Focus is Copyright © Creative House Publications PTY LTD 2018 and may not be reproduced whole or in part, in any form, without permission of the Publisher. All rights reserved. FOCUS is printed by Fairfax Media Print & Logistics North Richmond. Our paper is FFC and PEFC certified and meets with ISO14001 accreditation. FOCUS delivery bags can be REDcycled at your local Coles Supermarkets and the paper through normal recycling methods.

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New England focus. 3

contents Issue 142 - March 2019



Bobby Jacks Festival.

feature a special


To be held at the Walcha Showground on April 13, Bobby Jack's Festival is a community-oriented arts and music event aimed at the whole family!


The Brazier Boys.

Angus, Harrison, Thomas and Hugo Brazier tragically lost their dad to Melanoma in 2016. The boys, with the help of their mum Kathryn, have since raised a substantial amount of money for Melanoma research.


Savannah Roberts. Graceful and poised on stage and in person, passionate dancer Savannah Roberts embraces both dance and her born and bred country upbringing. Savannah dreams of sharing her talent and teaching other country youngsters … but her performance star is also set to shine bright in the future!

the Usual

The New England Festival - previously known as the Armidale Autumn Festival has undergone a name change to better embrace the whole region.

4 New England focus.




The New England Festival.


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The Tour de Rocks has seen intrepid participants cycle from Armidale to South West Rocks each year since 2010, all in aid of riding, engaging and inspiring communities to cure cancer. Co-Chair of Tour de Cure, Kay Endres has ridden in the event every year, and encourages everyone to become involved! This year’s event is set to take place from April 11th - 13th.

How much money has the Tour raised for i Kay. What's your role with the Tour de Rocks, cancer research over the years? and how many years Since the first ride, we have raised over $1.5 have you been involved million dollars for cancer research awareness and with the event? to find a cure for cancer. My role with Tour De When is the event set to take place this year Rocks is Co-Chair with David Boundy and John and please tell us a little about the proposed Sewell. course. I’ve been involved with Tour de Rocks since it The date for this year’s ride is Thursday 11th first started in 2010. I’ve Saturday 13th April. ridden it every year - this will The route is the same as be the eighth year, and my last year’s and takes us from second year as Co-Chair. Armidale to South West Rocks Since the Tour de Rocks - around 254 km. Everyone Since the first ride, we have began, how has the seems really happy to get off raised over $1.5 million event evolved? the main roads! dollars for cancer The event has changed How many people are you research awareness only minimally over the last expecting to take part in the and to find a cure for eight years. We started the event this year? cancer. The date for this ride out along the Waterfall We are expecting to year’s ride is Thursday 11th Way, but we had too many get around 400 riders and Saturday 13th April ... riders, so we decided to supporters, which will be about change the route. Now we the same as previous years. go out on Rockvale Road, How can locals help? Apart were the traffic isn’t so from riding on the day, are heavy, and turn on to Chandler Road. you also looking for volunteers? We love for our local community to get We have also changed the second day from involved! If people can’t ride or support the Bellbrook to Willawarrin - we try to stay off the event, we have many hungry mouths to feed, main roads as much as we can.

so any donations of cakes and slices is greatly appreciated. Why would you encourage people to become involved with the Tour de Rocks? We certainly encourage people to get involved with our event. If you ride a bike and would like a doable challenge, it certainly is achievable. If you can’t ride a bike, we always need people to support our riders. It is certainly an event where you can get fit, be healthy and be happy! There are some great raffle prizes on offer this year too! What are they? There’s a major prize of a 10 day, nine night Classic Kenya trip, donated by Bench Africa. Other prizes include a $500 voucher from New England Travel, a Giant bike and two nights’ accommodation at Sunshine Resort, South West Rocks. Who are the major sponsors of this year’s Tour? We thank our major sponsors: The Armidale School, Armidale SerVies, and Bayer. Where can we find out more info or register for the event? To find out more about Tour De Rocks, go to our website: Thanks Kay. Interview: Jo Robinson. New England focus. 5





reviously we’ve discussed some of the innovations at Uralla Central School, but up front can we ask why - why change? It’s a really pertinent question. I often say to parents and staff that the “problem” with schools is everybody has been to one, and in that sense everybody believes that they know how a school runs, or at least how they think it should run. The problem with this is that everybody’s notion of school is a snapshot of the next to last moment that they were at school - a frozen moment. Schools, like society, are inherently fluid and dynamic, admittedly some more so than others, sometimes they are reactive to changes in policy and theory about education, and sometimes they lead that change. The bottom line is that schools are preparing students for the future, not the past or even now. We welcomed our 2019 Kindergarten class recently as the graduating class of 2031; presupposing that the retirement age is 70, this group of young people will be retiring around 2083. So how is Uralla Central School responding to that challenge? Sometimes it feels like juggling a lot of balls in the air, but in reality we set up new structures almost from the first moment that I arrived at the school. In late 2014 we aligned bell times across the whole school and introduced our Academy model in Years 11 and 12. The latter means that we no longer wind down to Christmas in Term 4, because all students are promoted to the next academic year in Week 6, Term 4 and begin their new learning with new

6 New England focus.

A good part of the Middle School timetables and teachers. In years old - that is chronological model involves the concept of 2015 we researched and then based learning and progression. integrated learning which implemented our Middle School Just for fun, we introduced fosters the development of model to address transition a new whole school uniform the acknowledged twentyissues faced by many primary at the end of 2018 as well. first century soft skills and aged students. Seriously though, it wasn’t for encourages students to see the In doing so, we to some fun, but it has had an immediate connections between learning extent inadvertently created impact ,with well over 90% take areas. other structures; our Junior up rate in a little over a term of and Senior Schools. So now a three year transition phase. we have a Junior School (K-4), What sort of impact is all of Middle School (5-8) and Senior this having on learning? School (9-Academy II); to facilitate this we abolished Well, for starters we have seen an increase in all of the previous management structures e.g. enrolments, which gives us greater economies of secondary faculties, moved all of our teachers into scale. In our Junior School we are in our fourth one staffroom, created Head of School roles, a Head year of straight age classes (no composites), we are of Organisation, a Head of Student Wellbeing, and experiencing strong growth trends against state we are about to create a Head of Curriculum Design measures in Literacy and Numeracy, in some areas and Innovation role. being above state averages. That seems like a lot of change? We have expanded subject offerings across the Well, I hate to say it, “but wait, there’s more”. We board and have a dedicated program of improving have introduced elective subjects down to Year 5, we the facilities and resources of the school to ensure are well down the path of creating student interest that students in Uralla and the surrounding area have electives from Year 5-10. By way of example, in every chance of gaining as well-rounded an education 2018 we had a “Survival Skills” elective that involved as the next student. cooking, orienteering, bushcraft, flint-knapping and The Department of Education has a mantra that so on. every student should be “known, valued and cared A good part of the Middle School model involves for”, and we would like to believe that we are the concept of integrated learning, which fosters working very hard to ensure that vision. the development of the acknowledged twenty-first Our student leaders develop an over-arching theme century soft skills and encourages students to see the for every year; in 2019 we will all “ASPIRE” to be the connections between learning areas. best we can be - to Stand tall and Walk proud! To hark back to something I said earlier about what Wow, thanks again for speaking with us we might believe school is about, the structures that we all learned under are only a bit over one hundred Michael.

Do ins n’t de pec lay t no , w!

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To be held at the Walcha Showground on April 13, Bobby Jack's Festival is A COMMUNITY-ORIENTED ARTS AND MUSIC EVENT AIMED AT THE WHOLE FAMILY! One of the hardworking organisers behind the event, Lisa Kirton, explains how the festival showcases original music and helps provide a platform for young and upcoming performers ...


ell us a bit about Bobby Jack’s Festival (BJF) ... Bobby Jack’s Festival is an all ages music and arts festival with a strong community focus. We are a not for profit organisation, run by a team of volunteers. The event is being held at the Showgrounds in beautiful Walcha. Artists playing at BJF only perform their original material and songs. Ticket prices are amongst the lowest in the country, to enable all demographics to access great entertainment. What was the inspiration for the festival? The idea behind the festival was to create an event that we ourselves would like to go to. We were hungry for “original” music, rather than covers. It needed to be kid friendly, affordable and showcase a range of musical genres. We also wanted to be able to provide performance space for musicians who haven’t had much performance experience, through “Get Out Of Your Garage” (GOOYG). The name “Bobby Jack’s” attached itself quite organically to this project. Bobby Jack Waugh 8 New England focus.

NSW Government’s 2019 Incubator Event Fund is a late friend of ours who opened up new is helping us achieve these goals. horizons to us, after we moved to Walcha from The Get Out Of Your Garage event will be Sydney. He was a lover of many things different held on Friday, April 12th, the evening before and creative, and sure knew how to throw a the festival. This will good party! We kept give the emerging talent referencing shenanigans better exposure. On at his property while in Saturday, we will have the planning stage of two “main stages” next the inaugural event. So, Bobby Jack Waugh is a late to each other, to simplify we ended up naming it friend of ours who setup and changeover. after him; hopefully he’s opened up new horizons We’ve got camping getting a kick out of it, to us, after we moved to available on The Village wherever he may be now. Walcha from Sydney. Green, for those who This will be the second He was a lover of many things want to stay over. year for BJF; what can different and creative and sure Tell us about some of people expect? knew how to throw a good party! the artists you have The pressure is on to secured for this year’s deliver, and again exceed event. expectations, following BJF will start with a on from the great first Welcome to Country, followed by a performance event last year. We have put a lot of thought by the Dunghutti Dancers. into production and staging, as well as sideshow This year’s lineup is an eclectic mix of styles factors, such as market stalls and non-musical and genres. entertainment. Securing a grant through the

Our headliner, William Crighton is a seasoned performer. He has become very well known on the Australian festival circuit, and his performances are nothing short of epic. The Tambourine Girls includes Armidale native Pat Harris. They have been making waves on the Australian music scene with their brooding, melodic song writing and a live show to impress. Donna Amini grew up in Armidale, where she cut her song writing teeth. She’s now living, writing and performing in Sydney. The power she delivers with her dynamic duo is truly inspiring. Sydney band Syntax Error are bringing a set full of soaring psychedelic rock anthems and are hot players when it comes to Australian music. Goldheist needs no introduction in these realms; the beautiful Hester Fraser is renowned for her haunting melodies and angelic voice, and we’re glad to be welcoming her back. Local to Uralla, Post-Punk repeat offenders “The Warts” joined our 2018 lineup quite last minute and are back by popular demand. Captain Tragic is a Nu-Metal Band from




9:02 am


We’ll have a smorgasbord of great New England Food vendors, as well as market stalls and interactive workshops. Come and learn to Bellydance with Bellydance Earth and Sky, or learn about puppetry and make your own marionette with the Squeaking Tribe Marionettes.

Armidale, who put everything into their performances. They will be set to blow minds with their Halloween on stage get up. Dave Favours and the Roadside Ashes, hailing from Sydney, will bring their alt. country vibe to our stages this year. Masked anti-heroes, UniGlo are bringing the mysterious new genre of psych space, alt. techno to the masses. Nobody quite knows where this duo hails from (they might currently be living in Kentucky?) but be prepared for the unexpected! Besides the great music, what else can people enjoy on the day? We’ll have a smorgasbord of great New England Food vendors, as well as market stalls and interactive workshops. Come and learn to Bellydance with Bellydance Earth and Sky, or learn about puppetry and make your own marionette with the Squeaking Tribe Marionettes. Everyone will love the free entertainment “Lily’s Kids Explosion” has to offer from 11am - dusk. There’s a jumping castle, big blowup slide, giant lawn games and kids' craft activities, along with some other surprises. The bar will be in full swing, serving local beer and other drinks, so enjoy a band and beverage knowing that your kids are having a ball too. If you want to stay over, the Village Green has unpowered sites available, with plenty of toilets and hot shower facilities. We hope to see many happy campers. So, turn up on Friday to join us for GOOYG, which will set the mood for the main event on Saturday. The Get Out of Your Garage (GOOYG) event is for emerging artists to perform their own music, tell us about this concept. Getting into live performance can be daunting. Most musos will remember times of playing to three of their mates in a pub. To get

bigger gigs, a certain gig track record is expected. That is hard to achieve C if there is nowhere to M play. Dave Carr & Co are doing a great job with Y “Black Gully Festival” CM at NERAM; we wanted MY to complement what CY is available and create CMY a stage for young/ inexperienced performers to “get out of their K garage/bedroom/rehearsal space” and in front of an audience! Last year’s event brought some great acts to our attention; we want to keep working with these artists to help keep growing the New England live music scene. We’ve had “GOOYG” themed showcases after last year’s BJF, one at The New England Brewing Co (The Lanterns and The Briny Sea) and one at Top Pub (Lionel Solomon, The Graceless and Shaun Davies). There is some amazing talent out there, which deserves to be honed and nurtured. How do you see the festival growing? BJF will grow by keeping the enthusiasm and joy alive, while developing new ideas and concepts. It’s a lot of work and the committee works for free, so it is important that we make sure people don’t burn out. We’re trying to keep an open mind about what works and what doesn’t. Recent government regulations make it difficult for organisers to put on successful, financially viable events. However, we’re viewing BJF as an intimate community festival with a maximum attendance of 2,000; as such, we are classed as “low risk”. We will continue to listen to festival goers’ input on what they would like to see and experience. We have our ears to the ground in terms of who is out there in the vast, colourful landscape of music and will continue to deliver new, fresh lineups year by year. Thanks Lisa. More info and tickets at



OF YOUR T OU for local emerging talent

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First Saturday chats

Our next First Saturday chats will be hosted by Christopher Serow (Principal, Solicitor Director, Notary Public) from 10am to 1pm at the Legal Minds offices at 157 Beardy Street, The Mall, Armidale, on Saturday 2nd March 2019. As this is a popular program, bookings are essential on (02) 6788 1100.


Armidale Cup Race Day


Melanoma March

Location/Date Details Guyra, Saturday 9th March. 15 km walk commences from Guyra Showground, followed by a Long Lunch at Deano’s Spring Water Smoked Trout. (Long Lunch requires a separate booking and is an additional cost. See for details.) March Schedule 7:30am event registration; 8:30am march commences; 12pm Long Lunch at Deano’s Spring Water Smoked Trout; 1:30pm event closes. March registration fees adult (over 18 years) $25, child (5 - 17 years) $15, child (under 5 years) FREE. Info

When Sunday 3rd March. Venue Armidale Racecourse, Barney Street. Time gates open 11am; first race approximately 1pm. Cost $15 (adult), $12 (concession), free (under 16). Seven-race TAB race meeting, tote and local bookmakers, full bar and catering facilities. For more information, phone Jim on (02) 6772 3102 or 0407 293 239 or visit www.armidalejockeyclub.


Troy Cassar-Daley Greatest Hits Tour

Celebrating an amazing career - solo acoustic with special guest Jem Cassar-Daley. When Friday 22nd March @ 7:30pm (show 8pm). Where Armidale SerVies, 137 Dumaresq Street, Armidale. Tickets adults $40 / children U15 $20 * booking fees may apply. VIP meet and greet soundcheck experience package available *Limited numbers until sold out. More info Ph: (02) 6776 0800 or at club reception.

This meeting has been approved as a part half-day holiday from 12pm to 5pm. Fashions on the Field (best-dressed lady, bestdressed gent, best-dressed couple and best hat).



What ADFAS Armidale Lecture: Van Gogh and Gauguin; two of our favourite artists. Who Lecturer - Jacqueline COCKBURN (UK Arts Society Lecturer). When 6pm, Thursday 7th March. Where Memorial Hall, The Armidale School, Douglas Street entrance. Cost $25 fee applies per lecture. TAS Bookings: Trybooking Phone: (02) 6772 6441 Email:

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New England Festival This year’s theme - International Heritage of New England. When Saturday 16th March. 7am - Breakfast with the Armidale City Band (Civic Park). 11am - Massed pipe bands in the Mall. 12:30pm - Grand parade. There’s a new route this year, so look out for the best spots! Route will be publicised closer to the event. 2pm - 4pm - Quintet Competition at the Mall Stage. 4pm - Massed pipe bands and Burns Highland Dancers in the Mall. 4pm - 6pm - Culture vibes and international food vendors. 6:30pm - 7pm - Pipe Bands mini concert. 6:30pm - Australian Army Band Concert at Armidale SerVies Club - fundraiser for drought relief. Tickets available at Armidale SerVies Club, or online. Book early to avoid disappointment. Live and local music on the Mall stage throughout. Quilting and Needlework Exhibition (16th - 17th March). Gem show (16th - 17th March). Northern Inland Football Gala weekend (16th - 17th) March. Rugby Knockout Carnival (16th March).


Markets in the Mall

This month it’s the start of the famous Armidale autumn season, and we can’t wait for the markets this 31st March! Come down and listen to the great music on offer, and enjoy some of our great stallholders' local produce and international cuisines. Starting to feel the cold creeping in? Not a worry! We have you covered at the markets, with some of our home-made woollen products on offer. We look forward to seeing you and your friends and family at the Armidale Markets in the Mall this 31st March!





Alice Cairns and Justine Kavanagh

Pathfinders Foster Care Program Needs You. In January Pathfinders presented a special screening of the movie Instant Family in an effort to drive awareness of its Foster Care Program, and, ultimately, lead to more foster carers in our community.

8.7 per 1,000 children at 30 June 2017.

Instant Family is the smash family comedy of the summer, starring Rose Byrne and Mark Wahlberg as two woefully ill-prepared foster parents. It presents the realities of caring for children who have suffered neglect and abuse in a light-hearted manner.

Sadly, our communities are not exempt from this national trend; many children and young people are in need of OOHC across the New England North West. We are always in need of more carers.

Unfortunately, the realities of the number of children who need care appear to be bleak. Recent statistics show that, as of 30 June 2017, there were 47,915 Australian children living in Out of Home Care (OOHC). This has increased from 7.4 per 1,000 children at 30 June 2011 to

The number of children in OOHC has risen every year over the past five years between 30 June 2013 to 30 June 2017, with the numbers rising by 7,366 (18%).

The movie was a great opportunity for Pathfinders to highlight its commitment to the children and young people of our community. But, as always, more can be done. If you are interested in becoming a carer, please contact us on 1800 314 199 or fostering@


I’ve always (dramatic alert!) said that people may kill for dirt, but they’ll coat you with honey and stake you out on an ants’ nest for water. Water is life.


igby Moran’s exhibition, The Values of Water opened at the Aboriginal Cultural Centre as the drought was grinding on, the tragedies in the Murray-Darling system were unfolding (a friend in Bourke sent me the Western Herald showing the Darling there - scary), and then the punishing effect of the Queensland floods underlined the powers of water. Internationally exhibited, Digby’s art tells us his personal story centred on water in the Northern Rivers region. Water makes his life. I was lucky to be taken around an international business based in Armidale to see another aspect of water’s story. Peter and Susan Cull’s ICT International P/L manufactures and exports “scientific measuring and monitoring solutions to some of the world’s harshest and most vulnerable environments”. Peter’s UNE PhD in irrigation monitoring led on to more research and then to practical applications of scientific theories in more than 55 countries - monitoring e.g. sap flow, and measuring the water use of plants. I haven’t space to describe the fascinating examples, but the lesson is that science can, through entrepreneurial thinking, offer a range of practical solutions to the “management of water, soil, vegetation and the environment”. AND, be based in a regional centre. Bruce Whan, Chair of Landcare’s Urban Rivercare, has happily received $20,000 funding from State MP Adam Marshall to purchase a steam weeder to assist in the rehabilitation of Dumaresq Creek. It’s interesting that along the Cooks River, Sydney Water has begun returning concreted banks to natural contouring. With grants available to local government, poor Dumaresq Creek might also have a chance to stop resembling a drain. That was one suggestion from the Visions4Armidale Creeklands group - removal of the stone trench to maximise the benefits of water in the heart of the city. Quality presentation is an important art. The Armidale Library has certainly shown that the addition of the wonderful dragon mural by David Allan and Fiona McDonald in the children’s section can lift the appearance and spirits of the whole library.

And thank goodness that Adam Marshall has managed to finesse the sensible return of the OTC to the Education Department - which should indeed accept responsibility! Certainty of tenure for NECOM has been one very big worry. I was talking with Garry Slocombe - whose Rotary Armidale AM Club manages the Mall Markets for the PCYC - about the changing kinds of stalls and future plans for improvement. Markets always add such a buzz, and it’s wonderful to see people thronging the Mall, with a decidedly food-oriented emphasis these days, as well as more hand-made items. The additional success of the Farmers’ Markets shows the public appetite (literally!) for such events. Perhaps more evening markets? Armidale’s Business Chamber has re-launched its popular Enterprise Women’s Breakfast series as WiNG - Women’s Networking Group. They say “more than a breakfast - a networking program, empowering women to take flight”. Good on them. One of my forays this month has been to visit the Community Garden behind NERAM, and my reaction was both a lot simpler and a lot more complicated than I’d expected. Frankly, I’d wondered why there would be appeal here, when most have gardens available to them at home. However, after chatting and sitting with Jo Leoni, the magic became apparent. Transforming the old tennis courts has taken years, but now the garden itself dictates the way it grows. Mixed flowers and vegetables tend to self-seed in a delightfully unruly fashion - neat and purposeful gardeners need not apply! But there is, nonetheless, what I suppose could be called a tremendously “zen” feeling of peace, and the regular workers obviously gain great pleasure, with produce being sold through the Farmers’ Markets. Physicist, chemist and winner of two Nobel prizes, Marie Curie [1867 -1934] commented that we don’t notice what’s been done, but only see what remains to be done. Always something to be done, but important, as W.H. Davies’ poem says, to also have time to “stand and stare”. Susie Dunn. New England focus. 11



Boys The



he boys, with the help of their mum Kathryn, have since pooled their talents and through sheer hard work, determination and ground-breaking ideas have raised a substantial amount of money for Melanoma research. But - they’re not done yet! Find out what the Brazier team has planned for Melanoma March … Hi guys. Can you each briefly introduce yourselves, so our readers can get to know you? We are Angus (14 years), Harrison (12 years) and Thomas and Hugo (nine years). Your family has had a lot of experience with Melanoma and the impact this condition can cause. Please tell us a bit about your dad, and his experience with disease … Hugo: My dad was Mark Brazier. Thomas: He was 42 years old. Harrison: He was first diagnosed in September 2015. Angus: Melanoma affected Dad, with him sleeping a lot and not being able to do things with us. He would forget a lot of things - he just wasn't Dad. What are some of the favourite memories you shared with your dad? Angus: Spending time together on Hamilton Island on our last family holiday. Harrison: Building things together. Thomas: Just being able to see him every day and helping him. Hugo: Going hunting, and the Hamilton Island family holiday. Your dad sadly passed away on May 30, 2016, and most of us could all only imagine how this impacted your family. Since then, you've been very active in raising both funds for and awareness of Melanoma research. How did the idea for "Five Cent Friday" in 2017 come about ... and how much money 12 New England focus.

lunch at Deano’s for people who don't want to did you raise from this event? walk, using some local food for them to eat. Harrison: It was my idea to do Five Cent Friday. Thomas: Maybe volunteer to help Mum on the I got the idea from “Love your Sister”, when they day! raised so much money and thought we could do Hugo: Donate money in the jars that we have this - and Mum said, “Why not!” put out. We thought that we would only raise $500, What's something you've all learned about but we blew this out of the park and ended up Melanoma that you'd raising over $25,000 in a like to share with us? month. Angus: You should be I also lost a bet on the very aware that it is very amount we would raise It was my idea to do Five dangerous and get your and had to give up a box Cent Friday. I GOT skin checked at least once of chocolates! THE IDEA FROM a year. There are a lot of ‘LOVE YOUR Harrison: It is a events around the SISTER’, WHEN dangerous disease. nation planned for THEY RAISED SO Thomas: That you "Melanoma March". MUCH MONEY should wear sunscreen and What do you guys have AND THOUGHT WE hats outside. planned for the month? COULD DO THIS - and Hugo: Sunburn is really Angus: We wanted Mum said, ‘Why not!’ bad. to walk from Guyra to If you could say Armidale, which Mum anything to your dad tried to get permission to right now, what would it be? do, but were told we couldn't. So, we are now Angus: Hope you're proud of me. going to walk from the Guyra Showground to Harrison: Love you. Deano's Trout Farm at Black Mountain. Thomas: Love you, and wish you were here Harrison: We are hoping to do this on the 9th today. March. Hugo: Can we go hunting? Miss you. Hugo: Some of our friends from school and Where can we find out more about football are going to walk with us. We have put Melanoma research in general, and also your some jars in shops for people to put five cents in fundraising efforts? as well. Angus: The Melanoma Institute Australia: Thomas: Our school is also going to help with some fundraising and through giving us the Mum has also created a Facebook page money for Five Cent Friday. The Guyra Show held called Five Cent Friday: a Cattle Calcutta for us too. fivecentfriday/ How can FOCUS readers help you with Thanks boys - you are all absolute Melanoma March? champions. Angus: People will be able to walk with us, Keep up to date with what’s happening registering and paying a small registration fee to with the boys’ planned March for Melanoma do this. through the Five Cent Friday Facebook page. Harrison: Mum is also trying to organise a

Registration for the march can be completed online at: https://guyra. or at the event on the day (cash only). Note: the long lunch at Deano’s Trout Farm is an additional cost and requires separate booking - refer to the Five Cent Friday Facebook page for details. Some info from The Melanoma Institute of Australia Melanoma is Australia’s national cancer • Australia and New Zealand have the highest melanoma rates in the world, with the Queensland incidence rate of 71 cases per 100,000 people (for the years 2009 - 2013), vastly exceeding rates in all other jurisdictions nationally and internationally. • More than 12,700 cases of melanoma were reported in 2013 in Australia. • 48,937 were living with melanoma (at the end of 2010). • Melanoma rates doubled in the 20 years from 1986 - 2006 and are still on the rise. • In Australia, 1 in 14 men and 1 in 24 women will be diagnosed with melanoma sometime in their life. Research is making a difference • Over the past five years, the use of surgery plus additional treatments have significantly extended life expectancy in people with advanced disease (where the melanoma has spread to other organs). These treatments include targeted therapies (modifying the actions of specific genes) and immunotherapies (modifying the actions of the immune system). Radiotherapy can also reduce recurrence rates. • In a recent MIA-led trial, researchers have made a major breakthrough by tripling the life expectancy for some advanced melanoma patients. However, many others are not responding to new treatments and further research is vital. Interview: Jo Robinson.

Throughout the year, Gallery 126 will be taking you into the studio spaces of some of our local artists. A large part of an artist’s time is spent in solitude in either the studio or in the field gathering material. This reference material can be drawings, paintings, sketches, photos or the experience itself of being immersed in the environment.



ome artists use the plein-air approach, i.e. all the artwork is made and completed in the field, whereas other artists take this information back into the studio to either finish off or make the artwork. An artist’s studio is a very personal space, as you will see. The first studio we enter is that of local artist Stuart Boggs. The large studio is located in residential Armidale, settled into the garden under a large tree at the rear of his house. Stuart works mostly in the studio from various reference material gathered in the field. Other inspiration comes from the many magazines and books on the bookshelves in the studio featuring artists such as Elizabeth Cummings, Gerhard Richter, John Mawurndjul and Fred Williams, to name a few. In addition, the Geological books and the maps pinned to the wall are used to reference the structure of the landscape, which is a dominant aspect in Stuart’s paintings. When he is in the studio, Stuart says, “I have music playing, usually loud and heavy, much to the displeasure of the neighbours, which takes your mind to a different place. Light is important, and


the lights in the studio are a combination of white and warm, as a lot of the time I find myself painting in the late afternoon or night. If I’m in the studio during the day, there are five large doors which fold back and extend the space out onto the large deck and allow more natural light. I paint with acrylics on canvas, but mainly on paper, because I like my paint to dry relatively quickly - enabling the scrapers to cut back through the paint to expose the underpainting. I use a range of spatulas, scrapers, painting knives and brushes, mostly large, some up to 20 cm wide. I work on one painting at a time and when that’s finished, I keep it pinned on the wall while I continue with other works which will make up the body of work for an exhibition. I can then use these paintings as reference material to both set context and continue the progression of the works. A single painting may be completed in one studio session, or it can be revisited in the next session or many more until it is resolved. I’m a bit of a messy worker but I’ve cleaned up a bit for this photo shoot!” Stuart’s paintings can be viewed at Gallery 126, 126 Jessie Street, Armidale.

New England focus. 13

14 New England focus.


2019 Armidale & New England Show Timetable of Major Events Friday 8th March



These Equine Artists will be injecting some new ell us about the Rooftop Express and what can we expect to see energy into the main arena, with some never before from them at this year’s Armidale seen stunts that will make you catch your breath as Show? you watch and share intimate and intricate horse After runaway success across moments that celebrate the bond between humans Australia, leading equine industry and horses. identity and show creator Dave Manchon and his Dave Manchon’s exciting style of arena show team are bringing some never before seen features is recognised as one of the leading styles of to Armidale. The Rooftop Express Show is a first entertainment working today, class arena spectacular that with headline performances features world first stunts, true across Australia and a list of blue Australian comedy and world first stunts in his holster. awe-inspiring horsemanship. Its Dave and his team have credits DAVE AND HIS TEAM HAVE loveable bush characters and working in the film and television CREDITS WORKING IN THE amusing storyline encourages FILM AND TELEVISION industry alongside their livestock, crowd participation and family

INDUSTRY ALONGSIDE as well as training and riding fun. THEIR LIVESTOCK, AS WELL some of the top money earning The show will present a highly AS TRAINING AND RIDING performance horses in Australia. refined and visually enchanting SOME OF THE TOP MONEY spectacular that takes horse play The Rooftop Express Production EARNING PERFORMANCE and cattle mustering to a new is partnering with Armidale’s very HORSES IN AUSTRALIA. level. The brand new “Brumby own Overseer Saddlery, to share Muster” show will gallop into an uplifting message about the the main arena on both Friday role of primary production in New 8th and Saturday 9th with a South Wales with all Australians. night show that is sure to get hearts racing and whips Saddler Jason Simmons and Dave Manchon both feel cracking. strongly about celebrating and showcasing the skillsets Full of cheeky moments with funny man Anthony of Australian saddle makers and horsemen alike. Cootes and awe-inspiring horsemanship, the show is a We welcome the opportunity to showcase our bush must see for anyone who has ever wanted to put on a mates and introduce Armidale to our outback friends. cowboy hat. For more information, please contact: 0413 872 214 The Rooftop team saddle up with an all star line up or contact us on Facebook: of horses, dogs, cattle and their unmistakably blue IVECO trucks.

7:00am 8:00am 9:00am 10:00am 10:00am 11:00am 2:00pm 3:00pm 4:00pm 4:30pm 6:00pm 6.00pm 6:15pm 7:00pm 8:00pm 8:15pm 8:30pm 10:00am

Gates Open Registration for Youth Events @ Exhibition Centre commence Show Jumping Rings Commence (Main Arena) Horse Rings Commence (Main Arena) Junior Judging Events Commence (Exhibition Centre) Stockhorse Junior Judging Commences Stud Sheep Junior Judging Commences (Exhibition Centre) Fleece Junior Judging Commences Pavilions Open Stud Beef Cattle Junior Judging Commences (Exhibition Centre) F002 Zone Beef Paraders Competition (Exhibition Centre) Local Stud Beef Paraders Competition (Exhibition Centre) Led Steer Classes & Heifer Show Commence (Exhibition Centre) Local Entertainment in ring Night Show Entertainment Commences (Main Arena) Opening parade of Special guests & Armidale Car Club Grand Opening Ceremony and Showgirl announcement Equine Rough Stock Rodeo Commences (Main Arena) Friday Night Fireworks Display Rooftop Express Premier Show “The Brumby Muster” Pavilions Close Close of Show

Saturday 9th March 7:00am 8:00am 8:30am 10:00am 10:00am 2:00pm 2:30pm 3:00pm 4:00pm 5:00pm 6:00pm 6:00pm 7:00pm 7:45pm 8:15pm 8:30pm 9.00pm 9:15pm 10:00pm

Gates Open Show Jumping Rings Commence (Main Arena) Horse Rings Commence (Main Arena) Stud Beef Cattle Judging Commences @ Exhibition Centre Woodchop Commences (Woodchop Area) Ute Show Commences Pavilions Open Interbreed Beef cattle Classes (Exhibition Centre) Pet Show Commences (In front of Secretary’s Office) Horse Ball Competition “Hoof and Woof” Competition Auto Parade and Showgirl presentation Night Show Entertainment Commences (Main Arena) Young Farmers Challenge Rooftop Express Show “The Brumby Muster” Wicks Family Whip Crackers - Performance Ute Show Events - “Bark-off” and Barrell Race Pavilions Close Fireworks Display (Main Arena) Demo Derby (Main Arena) Close of Show

*Times may be subject to change at the discretion of the Show Society

Armidale and New England Show Society. New England focus. 15




The opening of the 42nd Annual Rotary Club of Uralla Art Exhibition will be held at the RSL Memorial Hall, Salisbury Street, Uralla. The club expects to display near to 500 artworks from artists across NSW and Queensland, with all art works for sale. Opening night is Friday 29th March at 6:30pm.

at the markets

One of the great things about the Armidale Markets in the Mall that gives it that community feel is having some local musicians showcase their talents to our patrons.


or the last several years the markets team has been inviting local musicians who want to share their love of music to the markets, and the responses we’ve had from the New England community has been fantastic. We can’t list all the musicians we have had at the Markets in the Mall in the past, because there have been so many! But what we can tell you is that each month there will be a local music solo, group or band on show ready to

entertain you for the duration of the markets. This initiative that was started by the Armidale Markets in the Mall team has been supported and championed by not only our local musicians, but by our amazing stallholders, who voluntarily contribute something each month in order to make a donation toward the musicians coming down on a Sunday to play. Be sure to come on down on March 31st and hear our next local musicians perform at the Armidale Markets in the Mall!


e welcome well known guest artist Phillip Thornton. Phillip enjoys using traditional oil painting techniques, but whilst being mindful of other painting skills and ideas, he has developed his own individual and recognisable style. Phillip will be present on the night with an impressive display of his art, including an artwork donated for the raffle. Finger food will be provided by the Uralla Central School hospitality students; Merilba and Whyworry Wines will provide wines for the evening’s official function and a raffle. Music by the ever popular Peter Stanley; cost is $20

H i g h

pp, tickets available at the door. Please RSVP for catering purposes for the opening night to Jan Kaehler 0429 608 521 or 6775 3212. Art Chairman Richard Kaehler said the whole town is behind the annual exhibition, with overwhelming sponsorship and financial support. Money raised goes towards Uralla community groups and supporting the Youth of Uralla. Uralla Art Exhibition is open daily: 10am to 4pm, Saturday 30th March to Sunday 7th April and 10am to 2pm Sunday 25th March. Entry fees: $5 adult, $4 seniors, children under 12 years free.

C o u n t r y



Boutique gin, craft beers and a three-course gourmet feast in the picturesque garden of “Cairnie”, Walcha will well and truly tick the social outing box for the year.

he beautiful High Country Long Lunch Tickets are on sale now through commences noon on Saturday 6th April tickets can be purchased individually, or if 10 tickets and will feature boutique gin and craft are purchased at the one time, a table of 10 can be beer stalls from The reserved for you. Search High Welders Dog, Great Hops, The Country Long Lunch on the Farmers Wife and Glen Gowrie Try Booking site. Tickets are Distillery. Dobson's Distillery gin $88 per person, including THIS EVENT IS BEING will also be available. Likewise, a 3-course feast by Pronto ORGANISED BY THE ST wine will also be available for Catering and two drink PATRICK’S SCHOOL P&F TO consumption. tickets. All other beverages RAISE MONEY FOR A MAJOR An exciting auction will take can be purchased from the PLAYGROUND UPGRADE. place during lunch, including a stalls on the day. T6 plane flight over the gorges or This event is being an acrobatic flight (your choice); organised by the St Patrick’s original artworks by local Walcha School P&F to raise money for artists Paula Jenkins and Kate Durack; a week’s beach a major playground upgrade. We wish to thank our house getaway in Yamba; a Global knife set, and major sponsors Marchant Bros. and Betts Transport more. and our other sponsors for their support.

16 New England focus.


ROBERTS Graceful and poised on stage and in person, passionate dancer Savannah Roberts embraces both dance and her born and bred country upbringing. Savannah dreams of sharing her talent and teaching other country youngsters … but her performance star is also set to shine bright in the future!


i Savannah. Please tell us a little about yourself. I’m 17 years old and currently attend Year 12 at Guyra Central School, where I’m a Vice Captain for 2019. I’m extremely passionate about dance, and I study it both in and out of school. I was born and raised in Guyra, and agriculture and animals are also interests of mine. My family comprises my mum and dad (Natasha and William) and my two younger sisters (Millie and Sophie). Mum is an Administration Officer at Guyra Central School, where my sisters also attend, and dad owns a fencing contracting business. My family provides me with endless support for my dance passion, whether it be travelling seven hours for rehearsals, attending every dance performance, Dad sewing tutus or Mum making up her own dance moves for me. They always encourage me to try my best and take opportunities that come my way. I am very appreciative for everything they do for me. How old were you when you first began studying dance ... and who have been some of the people who've most helped you hone your skills? I was three years old when I first started studying dance at Australian Dance Enterprises under the guidance of Colette Brazier. I’ve had the opportunity of being trained by some extremely talented and knowledgeable teachers and choreographers, and I appreciate and respect all of them (there are a lot to list, but they know who they are). I will be forever grateful for everything Colette has done for me, and so many others. It is thanks to them for assisting and guiding

my development and enhancement of skills in dance and individual dance styles, but also skills in artistry, expression and performance. I’m so grateful to have been taught by such passionate industry professionals, all of them helping shape the dancer I am today. Where are you currently studying/ performing dance? I’m currently studying dance for my fourteenth year at Australian Dance Enterprises (ADE). In addition to this, I study HSC Dance externally through Tamworth High School with Miss Breanna Mcfadyen, who has been a major influence on my love for dance. I perform annually at Eisteddfods and competitions in local and surrounding areas such as Armidale, Tamworth, Inverell and Kempsey, as well as ADE’s annual dance recital. What type/s of dance are you currently studying? I’m currently practicing dance in the styles of modern, contemporary, jazz and classical ballet. I chose these particular styles as I believe they differ in their own way and allow me to explore new movements and dynamics with my body. I always have and always will respect how important classical ballet is for every single other dance style. It is the basis and foundation of all dance movements, and without it I would not be the technical dancer I am today. My favourite style would be modern or contemporary, as I still apply classical ballet technique whilst creating fluid and expressive movements. I also teach dance in the styles of ballet, jazz, modern, contemporary and hip hop, which I find really enjoyable and rewarding, as I get to share my knowledge and experience with younger dancers. For those of us with the clichéd "two left

I always have and always will respect how important

classical ballet is for every single other dance style. It is the basis and foundation of all dance movements, and without

feet", it appears dancing Melbourne City Ballet’s at your level requires an production of Carmen it I would not be the technical equal amount of both and was successful in dancer I am today. physical and mental the process, meaning endurance! How many I was able to dance hours a week do you alongside some talented spend dancing ... and ballet dancers who are what other activities do you do to keep yourself professionals in the industry. fit? A major highlight was my involvement in the Ha ha! When it comes to social dancing, I am 2016 Schools Spectacular, where I was the first the queen of “two left feet”! student in the North West region to be part of a I do strongly believe a great deal of mental featured ensemble. endurance is required to balance the physical All of these have been such amazing and endurance of dance and to keep dancers valuable experiences that have helped me determined and motivated to keep challenging improve as a dancer and performer and shown themselves to be the best dancer and performer me what the performing arts industry is they can be. composed of. I dance around 15 hours a week, which What are your dreams for the future? includes teaching dance as well. Running helps I would love to dance full-time for one - two me maintain a level of cardiovascular endurance, years to gain a Certificate IV and Diploma in assisting me in dances that require that stamina. Dance and be involved in performances and I also do resistance and interval training and productions around Australia, and possibly regular stretching at home to better improve overseas. I really enjoy teaching dance, and I and maintain important components of fitness believe pursuing that would be an ambition of - balance, muscular strength, endurance, and mine in the future, whether it be in a studio or in flexibility. the school education system. What have been some of the performances I’m also really passionate about agriculture you've been involved with that you've most and giving kids in the country (just like me) the enjoyed? opportunity to dance, so opening a dance school I was involved with the 2017 Grease Arena in a non-metropolitan area or travelling around Experience, produced by Harvest Rain, as part rural and remote areas sharing my knowledge of an ensemble, which I really enjoyed and and understanding of dance would be a dream. where I was shown how a professional musical For this upcoming year I’m hoping to be production is developed and performed. involved in more intensives, workshops, I recently competed at the Gold Coast in the masterclasses and productions to enhance my Evolution Dance National Finals, where I placed dance, choreographic and teaching style. in the top three in several dances - which was an amazing experience. Thanks Savannah. Last year I auditioned to be a part of the Interview: Jo Robinson. New England focus. 17

the idea of




tourism UPDATE

Hailed as Australia's leading a capella group, The Idea of North (TION) have performed worldwide, released ARIA awardwinning albums, and will be kicking off the 2019 Concert Season for Musica Viva Armidale and New England Conservatorium on Thursday 4th April in the Armidale Town Hall.


ION's Nick Begbie spoke to us about the upcoming performance, their music, and why they're looking forward to their concert in Armidale, featuring NECOM’s own New England Singers Choir. Your concert repertoire is incredibly diverse. What can audiences look forward to? The main reason for the breadth of music in our repertoire is a recognition of the fact that vocal textures are more similar to each other than different instruments, so we have always tried to maintain a repertoire that is inherently sonically diverse. That said, the sounds and colours we explore with our voices is vast, so one thing the audience can look forward to is hearing voices perform in ways they’ve never heard before emulating instruments, colour tone ranging from dark to delightfully twangy, and a whole range of emotions. We aim to extract both laughter and tears from our audiences! What advice would you offer to young musicians? Woah! That’s a huge question. We’d have to say that in spite of the limited importance placed on the arts by certain facets of our government, the arts is Australia’s cultural lifeline, and we NEED you! Know that what you’re doing is of benefit to Australia and its collective psyche. And it’s also important for you, so stick it out. You will be rewarded greatly! You will be performing with New England Singers, Armidale’s own award-winning choir. What’s it like working with choirs and incorporating them into your performances? We LOVE working with other vocal ensembles, and often seek out choirs to produce multiple-bill performances. We love working with a range of choirs, so you can’t imagine how much we’re looking forward to working with an awardwinning choir from Armidale. What are your favourite musical styles to perform? Most definitely jazz. Oh, and pop. Hmmm, comedy as well. And folk music! From your amazing output, do you have one or two favourite “gems” that you love to 18 New England focus.

perform? I think our “favourites” are different for each of us, but often they’re songs that are relatively new in the repertoire. For me, at the moment, my favourites are Not Perfect by Tim Minchin, and a beautiful original written by our alto Naomi Crellin, called Alice in the Underground. Clever arrangers are often overshadowed by their composing counterparts. How important is the skill of arranging in your line of performance? I believe that one of the most important things to make or break a group of this instrumentation (all voice) is the arranging. Naomi is also our musical director and main arranger, and I believe one of the best small-group a cappella vocal arrangers in the world. She’s constantly being commissioned by very well known groups on the other side of the world to arrange pieces for them, and I also feel a huge part of our success and appeal lies in her beautiful and creative arranging. You’ve toured internationally, released more than a dozen albums and won ARIA awards; what do you enjoy most about touring the country and performing for regional audiences? The thing that we really love about touring to regional Australia is it often takes us to new places, but the best thing is how appreciative regional audiences are - they come along expecting to have a great time; whereas, on occasion, more “metro” audiences have been known to come along expecting more to BE entertained by us … it’s a very subtle, but important distinction. The performance process is two-way, and we feel like regional audiences really get on board with us. We are REALLY looking forward to coming!

Musica Viva Armidale and New England Conservatorium present The Idea of North. Where: Armidale Town Hall. When: 7pm, 4th March. Tickets:

New England High Country comes alive in autumn, with a fabulous array of autumn events. Some of the March events include the Armidale Cup; the Armidale Show; the Annual Gem and Craft Show; Antiques Collectables Fair; Seasons of New England in Uralla, and our very own New England Festival.


Northern Inland Football Gala weekend (16th he New England Festival - previously known as the - 17th) March. Armidale Autumn Festival Rugby Knockout Carnival (16th March). since its launch 27 years The First Fire and Rescue NSW Regional ago - has undergone a name Firefighter Championship of 2019 is being change to better embrace held in Armidale on the weekend of the the whole region. The beauty of autumn and 16th and 17th March at Jack Valance Oval amazing colours of our region will be further - 191 Dumaresq Street. The Championships celebrated with a new event, the Colour New showcase the skills and expertise a modern England Street Arts Festival on Saturday 6th firefighter uses every day, be it attacking a April. fire or responding to a major emergency. See The New England Festival on the 16th March firsthand just how firefighters respond to has something for emergencies and pick up everyone: vital fire safety tips to help 7am - breakfast with the prepare and prevent fires Armidale City Band (Civic and emergencies before Park). they happen. The festival will 11am - massed pipe Saturday 6th April, join bring Armidale’s bands in the Mall. local musicians, writers, Beady Street Mall 12:30pm - grand performers, crafters and surrounds to parade. There's a new and other artists for an life from 2pm and route this year, so look culminate with a exciting day of fun and out for the best spots! light show at 8pm. creativity at the inaugural Route will be publicised Colour New England closer to the event. Street Arts Festival. 2pm - 4pm - quintet The festival will bring competition at the Mall stage. Armidale’s Beady Street Mall and surrounds 4pm - massed pipe bands and Burns Highland to life from 2pm and culminate with a Dancers in the Mall. light show at 8pm. A makers’ markets, arts 4pm - 6pm - culture vibes and international activities, exhibitions, crafts, workshops and food vendors. street art will be accompanied by window 6:30pm - 7pm - pipe bands mini concert. displays, demonstrations, street theatre, arts 6:30pm - Australian Army Band Concert and heritage trails, food markets and much at Armidale Ex-Services Club. This fabulous more. Musicians will perform in the mall and concert is a fundraiser for drought relief. nearby venues from 5pm to 10pm. Tickets are available at the Armidale ExFor full details of these events and more, Services Club or online. Please book early to please visit avoid disappointment. events. If you would like an event listed on Live and local music on the Mall stage the Armidale Tourism websites, please email throughout the day and evening. the details to Quilting and Needlework Exhibition (16th - additionally, 17th March). event organisers can add their events directly Gem show (16th - 17th March). to the Armidale Regional Council website.

New England focus. 19


social scene.

20 New England focus.

Helicopter High Tea courtesy of Rich Habana Photography.

social scene. ANOTHER BIG MONTH IN THE NEW ENGLAND! New England FOCUS' Office Warming Carpark Party. This month we hosted our "office warming carpark party", to which we invited our valued contributors, advertisers and family and friends. We got the bubbly flowing, ate some fantastic arrays of scrumptious delights from Little Coco’s Catering, all while listening to the musical stylings of the very talented Brendan Passey. We’d like to thank everybody who came down for our carpark party; without you, we wouldn’t be able to continue creating this beautiful magazine and bring fantastic local content to the community. Our new address is

3/164 Beardy Street, ARMIDALE, NSW 2350. The Circus Comes to Town. This month we were lucky enough to give away 10 double passes to the famous Hudson’s Circus. All our winners had to do was tell us a funny joke with a circus theme ... Here are a few crackers: It was such a shame to hear that the human cannonball lost his life the other day. His career was just taking off. How do you know the chef is a clown? The food tastes funny. Why did the clown go to the hospital? Because he was feeling funny.

Just saw this idiot with bright red hair, going down the road on a unicycle whilst juggling what a clown! We hope that all the winners had a fabulous time at the circus! Helicopter High Tea. The Armidale City Bowling Club hosted the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service Armidale Support Group's annual Helicopter High Tea. It was an afternoon filled with amazing food, drinks, music, and fun games, all for the benefit of the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service. Looks like everybody had a great time and also raised $5,235 for the service - great

work to everybody who was involved, from the guests to the sponsors, supporters and members! Thanks to Rich Habana for the imagery. Want to get involved in events like these, or even become a volunteer? Get in contact on the Facebook page: Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service - Armidale Support Group. Get Involved. Want FOCUS to showcase your event? Shoot us an email at or give a call on 6771 5551. Alternatively, send through your photos or tag us on your social media, and we’ll do our best to get you in the pages for Social Scene.

New England focus. 21

22 New England focus.



Picture this … You’re in the hub of the New England North West. The sweltering summer is dwindling away, and the golden-turning autumn leaves are blowing in the crisp breeze that wisps along the edge of the mountains and out on to the farming flats.

Tasty affair

Minding your



ou can hear live music and the chatter of friends humming through the streets, and the flavoursome smell of fresh, authentic and delicious food is coming to you from every angle. This could be your reality if you head to Tamworth this April for the Taste Tamworth Festival, the premier food and wine event on the region’s calendar. Taste is a 10-day celebration of the local growers, makers, chefs and diners, featuring the best local produce the region has to offer. The mouth-watering meals, fine wine, locally crafted beers, and abundance of entertainment makes for a fabulous food-filled affair. The year-round offerings from local venues, including Glasshouse Restaurant at Goonoo Goonoo Station, The Workshop, DECO Wine Bar and Restaurant, and The Pig and Tinder Box, just to name a few, are cementing Tamworth’s reputation as a regional “foodie” hub, with visitors travelling hundreds of kilometres to enjoy the hospitality on offer. Producers, makers and restaurant operators will band together to host an array of delicious events throughout the Taste Tamworth Festival, with some of the highlights including: Taste in the Park: sit back and relax under the shaded trees of Tamworth’s beautiful Bicentennial Park - the perfect picnic destination to be enjoyed by the whole family. With immaculate stalls providing samples of foods and beverages from all over the region, live music and impeccable company, there’s plenty happening to delight all tastebuds.

THANK YOU to emergency service personnel, council staff and volunteers for all their work at the Tingha fire. Bushfires are a devastating experience for property owners and the wider community, affecting all aspects of the community, including businesses. My sympathies to all those affected by this devastation. It is timely to remember that many volunteers have their own businesses or work in businesses. They leave their families and their usual work without question. Again, thank you.

Pop Up on Fitzroy: the Fitzroy Plaza is the place to be both Friday nights of Taste, with the outdoor plaza turning into a pop-up food and beverage haven. Kickstart the weekend by wandering through the stalls of the neighbouring restaurants and enjoy a drink from Tamworth’s iconic Post Office Hotel. High Tea in the Gardens: indulge in a sophisticated afternoon of sweet and savoury treats and tea and coffee, accompanied by live entertainment in the gorgeous surroundings of the Botanic Gardens. The Long Lunch: this signature event is the ultimate dining experience, with a three-course meal brought to you by the region’s leading chefs. All produce is locally sourced and grown, with visitors travelling from all over Australia to share in an afternoon that oozes relaxation and concludes the festival. So, if you’re a lover of authentic and delicious flavours, a drinker of crisp wines, cold beers and refreshing beverages who enjoys live entertainment and spending time with your mates, make the Taste Tamworth Festival a must on your to-do list this autumn. Taste Tamworth Festival will be hosted in Tamworth from Friday 5th April to Sunday 14th April. For more info, to purchase tickets or become a stall holder, visit


eet the Candidates On 8th March 2019, we will hold a Meet the Candidates Night for the State Elections. So far there are candidates from the Nationals, Country Labor, the Greens and the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers parties. Nominations for candidates open on 25th February 2019 for people who want to throw their hat into the ring, and close on 6th March 2019. The Meet the Candidates Night will be held at Armidale Town Hall starting at 5:30pm. All interested members of the community are invited to this free event. Susan Law Business lunch Armidale Regional Council CEO Susan Law has been invited to attend a lunch to provide direct to members and others an account of Council achievements, current and future plans and Council finances. It is, if you like, Armidale’s “State of the Union” address, which will hopefully be given each year - as occurs elsewhere. WiNG On 12th February 2019, the Chamber held the first WiNG (Women’s Networking Group) breakfast for the year. It was very well attended; in fact, the venue was sold out, with Lucy MacKenzie from award-winning U Goose presenting her business journey, its challenges, opportunities and what inspires her. Running a goose farming production is clearly something she enjoys and is passionate about. The next WiNG breakfast speakers are the co-founders of “WomenVote”. WomenVote is a non-partisan group scrutinising policy for

women from all parties. It should be a very interesting breakfast, taking place on Thursday 11th April 2019 at a venue to be announced. Please purchase your tickets early in order to ensure a place. Evocities At its February meeting, the Regional Advisory Committee, a committee set up by Armidale Regional Council, endorsed Armidale’s continued involvement in Evocities, a group of seven councils including Armidale, which works to promote and offer employment opportunities in each member city through its website: Evocities exists to encourage people and businesses to move to one of its member cities. Growth will be key to the Armidale region’s success. Any business looking for employees is encouraged to post the employment opportunity on the jobs page. The committee will also look at ways of facilitating and measuring Armidale’s growth through membership of Evocities and otherwise. DAs Armidale Council’s Development Application is a topic that I hear a lot about. While there are usually different sides to each story, it seems we should be moving more closely to a “can do”, “how can we help” process, rather than a “submissions for acceptance” process. The Armidale Business Advisory Committee has adopted this as a project to work on with Council during the next few months. Council, for its part, is keen to continue improving its process. I will keep you posted. New England focus. 23

24 New England focus.


We’re talking with Tara Toomey, owner and organiser of Seasons of New England, about the next expo set down for Saturday 30th March at Hampden Park, in beautiful downtown Uralla.


hat’s the history behind Seasons of New England? Seasons of New England was founded in 2013 for the dual purpose of providing a meaningful platform for New England businesses who make the products they sell to be discovered, and to create the perfect reason for people to travel to the New England to discover those businesses, as well as the New England region. In what ways has the expo grown and changed since the early days? Initially the expo involved a market day, website and strong social media presence, and just 52 businesses. In recent years this

From a crowd of 3,200 in has evolved to also 2013, our last event in 2018 include an online and DREW A CROWD OF hard copy Seasons of 6,300, AND WE HOPE the myriad regional New England Directory, TO SEE A HEALTHY communities represented our much sought after CROWD AGAIN FOR at the expo day. expo bags and an ever supporting the 2019, What are some of the growing commitment to myriad regional communities steps you take to care showcasing the region represented at the expo day. for the environment? as a destination for both Seasons of New business and tourism England has also and now a hearty 110 always had a strong businesses! From a commitment to the environment, which has crowd of 3,200 in 2013, our last event in 2018 meant reducing plastics use and prohibiting drew a crowd of 6,300, and we hope to see the sale of bottled water. In 2018 we achieved a healthy crowd again for 2019, supporting

a significant goal of 80% of our waste being composted, having a positive outcome for the environment, and 14% being recycled. A further 6% ended up in landfill, and we are hoping to reduce that 6% even further in 2019. People are encouraged to bring their keep cups or to purchase a reusable Seasons beer or wine cup on the day, to take advantage of our DIY washing stations where needed, and to reduce the waste generated at the event as much as possible.

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Ben Page 97 Faulkner Street, Armidale Page Wharton Investments Pty Ltd ABN 38161674700 trading as Elders Insurance New England AR No. 439992 is an Authorised Representative of Elders Insurance (Underwriting Agency) Pty Limited ABN 56 138 879 026, AFSL 340965. Insurance is underwritten by QBE Insurance (Australia) Limited ABN 78 003 191 035 AFSL 239545. Contact us for a Product Disclosure Statement to decide if a product is right for you.


New England focus. 25


There will be Seasons staff and volunteers on hand to help out where needed, and we have also been working with our exhibitors to ensure any items they might need are compostable. This in turn makes the system needed to manage the waste pretty straightforward. Happily, many of our exhibitors have these products as part of their business already, and it is no surprise to see small business leading the way in this important area. When and where will the expo be held this year?

The expo has been held in the beautiful rural township of Uralla since its inception, and it has been a perfect fit. The community has been very welcoming of the growing gathering of businesses and artisans and the wonderful crowds that flock to enjoy the expo, as well as the small township and all it has to offer for the weekend - and longer! A wonderful old cricket oval set in an elevated position on the corner of King and Maitland Sts. is the location of the expo, just one block from the New England Highway and the main shopping and dining precinct of Uralla. Better

Find us at 154 Miller St, Armidale

26 New England focus.

still, it backs on to the Uralla Train Station, so travellers can walk straight to the expo when they hop off the train. What type of makers, creators and producers can we expect to see at this year’s expo? Brace yourself; this is a long list! There’ll be candlemakers, jewellers, silversmiths, dressmakers, cricket bat makers, confectioners, metal fabricators, gate and entry fencing creators, felters, spinners, woollen garment makers, wool growers, cobblers (yes, cobblers!), artists, potters,

jam, chutney and cordial makers, bakers, pastry chefs, free range egg producers, wood turners, coffee roasters, baristas, brewers, screen printers, apiarists, vignerons and farmers bringing products that include hard lemonade, cool climate wines, artisan spirits, fermented products, handmade fishing lures, canvas bags, horse accessories, smoked trout, cured meats, goats' cheeses, brewery sausages, organic doughnuts, skincare, herbal teas, bath bombs, specialty soaps, ice creams, berry pies, glamping experiences, olives and olive oils, apple juice, apples, pears, bath milk,


We all know that a good food is key to a good shopping day, AND THERE IS A

leather goods, native seedlings, kokedama, children’s toys, henna art, cheese knives, salad servers, children’s clothing, hair accessories, herbal first aid kits, dog treats, succulents, dream catchers, lanterns, timber furniture and traditional mead. And that’s just a start! How does the expo cater for all types of foodies? We all know that good food is key to a good shopping day, and there is a really tasty line up heading to the expo again this year. Vegetarian options include things like haloumi burgers, arancini, Buddha balls, various salads and gozleme, with some gluten free and vegan options in the mix too. Then there are the crowd favourites like brewery sausages, pies, tacos, sliders and mouth watering cakes and pastries. This year we also have handmade pasta and some fabulous berry pies and icecream. Coffee is always key for some of us

REALLY TASTY LINE UP (I’m sure I’m not alone There is a wealth of HEADING TO THE EXPO here!) and we have two local talent, and we AGAIN THIS YEAR. superb coffee carts on have been very grateful Vegetarian options include things site, while we also have for the musicians who like haloumi burgers, arancini and handmade caramel have been keen to Buddha Balls ... sticks, nougat and some join in at the Expo. chilled desserts being Some of the people prepared especially for entertaining us between the expo. Cold drinks are 9am - 7pm include ALL locally made too - raspberry and lemon Milly Washbrook, Rack ‘n’ Ruin, Vinnie & cordials, fruit crushes, Italian soda style drinks, The Cuban Missiles, The Charlie Fittler Band, chilled chai, to name a few. Our commitment Emma Bailey, The Briny Sea, Bruce Clark and to having free water continues and instead then after the Uralla Arts Lantern Parade, we’ll of bottled water, we have a centrally located hear from The Gravy. Sensational line up! (All free water tent being run by St John’s Anglican their details are on the Seasons website, so Church in Uralla. check them out and find them whenever you There’s a fabulous line up of local musical can.) talent planned for the day too! Who are What are some of the activities planned some of the entertainers we’ll be able to to keep the kids entertained? experience? As a mother with two young children

myself, I appreciate the importance of fun for the little people at these events. The wonderful Michele will be there with her Sand Wizard art, and Harlow Park will have pony rides. We are currently finalising the finer details, but we will have a tent dedicated to drawing, watercolour painting and more. And as always, there will be quoits, giant dominoes and ten pin bowling on the cricket oval, free to enjoy at any time. How much is entry to the expo? Free for children and $2 for adults. Where can we find out more info? To follow the event and discover the businesses involved, head to Facebook - Seasons of New England, Instagram - @seasonsne or call Tara on 0434 408 163, email

New England focus. 27

ARMIDALE SECONDARY COLLEGE “OUR FUTURE. OUR LEARNING.” As Armidale Secondary College opens its doors to a new era of education in Armidale, we talk to the school about a couple of key initiatives that have already been implemented to support the students.

MIDDLE SCHOOL What is the Middle School? The Middle School model at Armidale Secondary College has been tailored for our Year 7 & 8 students and includes the Key Learning Areas of English, Science, History & Geography, and Personal Development, Health & Physical Education. Foundational to the model is a reduction in the number of teachers that students have to two core teachers for the four subjects and students having a homeroom in which they are based for these subjects. Why was it implemented? The Middle School model was piloted at Duval High School with the Year 7 cohort in 2018 and due to its overwhelming success extended to Year 7 & 8 at Armidale Secondary College in 2019. The model was data informed including input from parents, students, teachers and partner primary schools. The model focuses on developing deep, authentic student/ teacher relationships, an integrated approach to curriculum delivery and a layered support network for every student ensuring they are known, valued and cared for. We acknowledge that Year 7 is one of two major transition points in a young person’s schooling. Our model focuses on minimising what can be large structural changes between primary and high school and recognising the importance of this transition.

PHONE 02 6772 1266 28 New England focus.

What have been the outcomes? With the establishment of Armidale Secondary College, the Middle School has been a vehicle for stability and support for students in Stage 4. Typically in high schools, some teachers spend as little as three hours per fortnight with each class. This model provides up to ten hours per fortnight and allows teachers to integrate curriculum across the four key learning areas. The key outcomes of the model have been an increase in student engagement, the building of genuine student/teacher relationships to improve student wellbeing and support the transition from Stage 3 to Stage 4, an increase in engagement and involvement with parents and the community, and greater staff collaboration.


ADDRESS 56-72 Crest Road Armidale, NSW, 2350

CREW The CREW program is based on the understanding that students need the opportunity to develop trusting relationships with school staff, and that by doing so students will benefit in a variety of ways. In CREW, each student in the school is assigned a staff member who works with the student in achieving his or her academic and personal goals. The program involves an advisory ‘class’ of approximately 15 students, similar to a homeroom, with sustained individual support. Our advisory programs have many different focusses and purposes. The daily CREW session gives students a chance to discuss academic progress including any barriers that a student might be experiencing. The CREW advisor advocates on the student’s behalf where appropriate. Furthermore, CREW provides students with a forum in which to discuss issues they face in their day-to-day lives, such as current events or ideas and suggestions for building our school community. The Positive Behaviour for Learning (PBL) program is also regularly incorporated into these advisory groups.

HSC LEARNING HUB What is the HSC Learning Hub and why has it been implemented? The HSC Learning Hub is an innovative learning space specifically for our year 12 students which: • Is connected, allowing for provision of master classes with external experts • Provides students with choice in where and how they learn • Can be adapted to accommodate learning modes and technology

• Provides optimum learning conditions with reverse cycle air conditioning and comfortable seating • Supports opportunities for students to learn independently and in small and large groups • Supports collaborative learning and teaching for students and teachers. The flexible learning space is designed to support the move from traditional teacher-focused instruction, to active competency-based, student-centered ways of working. The HSC Learning Hub accommodates the socially oriented, participatory and independent learning approaches required of the 21st century student.


Work has commenced on the new $117million Armidale Secondary College with the ceremonial first sod being turned by Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall, Principal Carolyn Lasker, Director Educational Leadership Armidale Pat Cavanagh and Project Liaison Officer Kris Croft on Monday 4th February.

What have been the outcomes? The HSC Hub co-ordinator, Mrs Lea-anne Vaughan, has reported a consistent increase in student numbers using the HSC Hub since the start of the school year with students working individually and with peers to enhance educational outcomes. She says the space allows students to access individual support and are effectively working co-operatively in small groups without distraction. “It’s a quiet learning space away from other students. We are able to access support to help navigate the HSC. It provides us with access to resources such as tutoring and technology” Vaishnavi Pradeep (Year 12) “The HSC Learning Hub is a comfortable working environment that nurtures our full potential to achieve. The tutoring that is available for everyone creates an inclusive learning experience for all students that may not otherwise be accessible for all”. Claire Wood (Year 12).

Photo credit: Simon Scott Photography Contractors, Richard Crookes Constructions, have erected the perimeter security fence and site offices and preliminary works are underway.


30 New England focus.

We are passionate about growing our people into confident and well-rounded mentors and leaders.

J A N E Newsome

E M M A Cooper



Roberts & Morrow proudly supports the growth and development of women in business. We are passionate about growing our people into confident and well-rounded mentors and leaders. One such leader is Partner Jane Newsome, who joined Roberts & Morrow in 2000. While she was always interested in accounting, she didn’t take the most direct path. After completing an initial agricultural based degree, she realised she wanted to be a Chartered Accountant (CA). Jane had to return to study to complete upgrading and bridging courses in accounting and then finally after many years of hard work, she completed her CA qualification. What advice do you have for people embarking on a similar career path? "It’s important from an early point to begin to

work out what you want in life. Of course, this takes time and it will change over the years. But the key is to plan in advance and use your time wisely. "I tell my own children it’s important to be able to clearly express yourself and speak up. Remember everyone comes to the table with a story, so be a good listener - relationships are built on being mindful." What are some business tips? “It doesn’t matter what career path you take, but make sure you’re passionate and interested in what you do, because you’ll spend a lot of time doing it! And leave a place in a better way than it was when you found it.” We are always interested in hearing from passionate individuals eager to join our team. Visit to find out more.

Describe your business in one sentence? Cooper & Co Building is Armidale’s only boutique father and daughter company dedicated to providing quality, professional building services to Armidale and the New England. What is your business vision for 2019? Our vision for 2019 is to continue providing our clients with an excellence in quality building services - ranging from new builds, renovations and extensions. Cooper & Co Building pride ourselves on our craftsmanship and the punctuality of our work. Like any business, we also hope to see our business attract more interaction through social media! What are your tips for balancing work/life? With a combined experience of over 40 years, we hope we have this elusive work/life balance sorted!

The ability to operate a successful local business is definitely backed up by supportive partners who cheer us on (and don’t complain about dirty work-boots at the door!) With any trade-related career, it’s always important to love what you do - this will flow through to your work. We try to work efficiently and effectively, we find this pleases our clients and allows us to have somewhat of a balance. What are you most proud of? The fact I get to run this business alongside my father - going from father, to mentor, to business partner is really something we are both proud of! I'm proud I’m able to chip away at the stereotype that goes with working in a male-dominant industry - having a female’s perspective and attention to detail with the task at hand is a very unique part of our business. I’m very proud of that too!

Passionate about helping our clients reach their goals. l 02 6774 8400

New England focus. 31


meet the

COVER WOMEN Meet our cover stars! Michelle McKemey, Cindy McRae and Tina Skipper are all HARDWORKING, ENTERPRISING NEW ENGLANDERS, WITH A DIVERSE ARRAY OF SKILLS AND BUSINESS INTERESTS BETWEEN THEM. They’re all also equally passionate about the land and our natural environment …



hat businesses are you Through my consultancy work, I travel to some extraorinvolved with? dinary places across Australia. Some of my favourite work I’m the Founder and Director places are Kakadu National Park, Arnhem Land, Narran of Melaleuca Enterprises EnvironLake Nature Reserve, Indigenous Protected Areas and the mental Consultancy Services. I glorious Sunshine Coast. undertake ecological assessments, When I’m working alone in the bush, I can really tune write reports and books, develop environmental educain to what is going on - lyrebirds calling in winter, echidtion packages, and deliver natural and cultural resource nas waddling around, wildflowers blossoming and the management projects. Some of my clients include CSIRO, changing seasons. I also love going “out on Country” private landholders, other consultants, Aboriginal comwith Aboriginal munities, universities and local, Elders and listening to their stories state and federal government and wisdom accumulated over thoudepartments. sands of years. I’m passionate about my career; We’re so lucky to live on a farm. I’ve been doing this type of work I have a lot of respect for my hussince I was 18, and I’d like to keep band, who is out there every day, Through my consultancy doing it for the rest of my life. taking care of our animals and our work, I travel to some I’m also Co-Director (with my land. It is a privilege to live on the extraordinary places across husband, Dave) of McKemey Pty land - our boys have ponies to ride; Australia. Some of my Ltd Agribusiness. We have a 2,080 we have pet chooks and dogs. We favourite work places are acre farm east of Guyra, where we have freedom and space. Having Kakadu National Park, produce wool, cross-bred lambs our own little patch of earth means Arnhem Land, Narran Lake and beef cattle. We manage the that we can try to practice what Nature Reserve, Indigenous business together, developing we preach - we are trying to our Protected Areas and the glorious Sunshine Coast. budgets, work plans and longbest to use sustainable agricultural term strategies and visions; then practices. Dave does all the farm work! What have been some of your biggest challenges throughout 2018/2019 - and how have you What do you love most about overcome them? working on the land? Work/life balance is my eternal I love being in the bush. I’m challenge! I have two young boys, and living on a farm is hard work. On top of that, I mancurrently undertaking my PhD at the University of New age my own business, and I’m studying! England, and I’m lucky to spend a lot of time out at I think last year may have been the busiest year of my my study sites, Wattleridge Indigenous Protected Area life - we moved house from our tiny farm cottage into and Warra National Park, here in the New England the family homestead with extensive gardens, and my Tablelands, as well as in Arnhem Land in the Northern involvement in our agricultural business intensified. I had Territory. 32 New England focus.

a heap of consultancy work contracts and needed to complete the field work for my PhD. We also had a lot of voluntary community obligations to fulfil. By Christmas, I was pretty exhausted! So, I took January off and had a beautiful restorative time with my family. The drought is also really challenging. This time of year we should have lush fields of grass - waist deep in some paddocks. When I look out over the farm, it is dry, brown and crunchy. We are struggling to have enough water for our animals. I also worry about our environment. This summer we have seen terrible drought, bushfires and floods throughout Australia. On the New England Tablelands, so many of our plants, animals and ecosystems are in decline - more are being added to the threatened species list every day. Vegetation clearing, weeds, feral animals and climate change are the main threats to our environment. I take my hat off to the landholders and Landcare who have restored native vegetation and are building up our natural ecosystems again and also to the National Parks, Aboriginal communities and NGOs, who are working to look after our Protected Areas, so we have refuges for native wildlife. What are your goals for the rest of this year? I would love to finish my PhD in the next 18 months! It really is a huge task, but I am passionate about my field of study (cross-cultural natural resource management and ecology, focusing on Aboriginal fire management) it is the fire (pardon the pun!) in my belly that keeps me going. I’d also like to spend as much time with my kids as possible, to play soccer with them after school, take them pony riding or bush walking on the weekends and just to make the most of this precious time we have together while they are still little. Thanks Michelle.


One of the greatest things I love is seeing my children grow up with so much freedom. They ride motorbikes, fish in the creek, help muster stock and have a real connection to where they live.



hat businesses are you involved with? With a background in communications, last year I started my own business, “My Rural Retreat”, which runs Creative Arts and Health and Wellbeing Workshops in our garden. We also offer self-contained accommodation on our property. My first workshop was in May, and since then I have had over 220 people attend various days. The support I’ve received has been extraordinary, and I‘m excited about the future and bringing some dynamic presenters to our region from all over Australia. I’m also involved in our commercial grazing businesses, Ollera Station and Cabarfeidh. My husband runs the day to day affairs; I help out when needed. I manage the accounts and bookwork and am basically his daily sounding board! This role is very important as we continue through dry years and have to make pretty hard decisions. What do you love most about working on the land? I love Mother Nature, although she is giving us a run for our money at the moment. I love being connected to nature, and I’m definitely an outdoors person. I love the people who live on the land, for their genuine, honest, practical ways, caring nature and unwavering work ethic. I think if you have an affinity with your animals and a love for what you do, then it’s not really work. One of the greatest things I love is seeing my children grow up with so much freedom. They ride motorbikes, fish in the creek, help muster stock and have a real connection to where they live. What have been some of your biggest challenges throughout 2018/2019 - and how have you overcome them? Managing through drought. We believe one of the vital keys is to make decisions early and stick with them. We’d like to think that we can remain a successful and prosperous business, operating for generations to come. That’s our motivation. With my own business, although it is very early days, I need to continue to offer high quality presenters and a variety of workshops. I’m thinking about Father and Son, Mother and Daughter Days and Weekend Workshops, where participants can immerse themselves in their chosen art or craft. What are your dreams/goals for the rest of this year? I dream about waking up every morning to rain on the roof! Wouldn’t that be great! My goal has always been to bring a variety of high quality workshops to our region, so people who own businesses or who have family commitments and cannot travel far, can come along, learn a new skill, meet like-minded people and enjoy themselves. What are your interests/hobbies when you're not working? I love gardening and have spent years creating the space we enjoy today. I find swimming meditative, I love painting, and I love cooking and spending time with my family and friends. I love a good laugh too and when you are reliant on the elements, it’s pretty important to maintain your sense of humour!



hat businesses are you involved How did you end up working on the land? with? My father’s advice when I completed secondary school Most people would recognise was to continue my education both formally and with me from my tourism business West life experiences by doing what I was passionate about. I Kunderang Recreational Retreat, completed a degree in Anthropology from the University on the Macleay River, two hours’ of QLD, which combined my love of human cultures drive over the eastern escarpment from Armidale, which and their intricate relationship with the land. Following has been in operation now for 23 years. this pursuit, I have worked intermittently throughout my From very humble beginnings, starting with one career in consulting, initially returning home in the 1990s’ campsite at the Cedar Trees with no amenities, it has drought period to work with my father in the shearing evolved to now having ten private campsites, each with industry and at home feeding livestock. their own amenities. This privacy, along with access To work with my father, one had to immerse themselves to the river, are the drawcards of the Retreat, with a in whatever he was doing, so a love and respect for the myriad of water activities - fishing, swimming, kayaking land, its vegetation, creatures and the people that worked etc. to be enjoyed, as well as within it was instilled in me 4WDriving. There is also a walk from a very early age! Meeting to the giant Figtree - a specialty a variety of people in these for birdwatchers - and historic endeavours has been one of my mustering huts as additional foremost experiences in working attractions for visitors to view. on the land. I completed a degree in “West Kunderang” is a working What have been some of your Anthropology from the cattle property, where I run my biggest challenges throughout University of QLD, which Hereford herd, inherited from my 2018/2019 - and how have combined my love of human cultures and their intricate father, John McRae. He was a great you overcome them? relationship with the land. mentor to me in the setup of the The drought has definitely tourism business in diversification been challenging, with the lack from grazing. of feed and water being ever I also inherited fine wool Merino present. I have been extremely sheep, with a few fat lambs grown fortunate to have secured as well, and a small herd of Angus agistment, offloading my Angus x Hereford cattle, which I usually cross herd and Merino sheep run at my home at “Biston Park”, from “Biston Park”. In doing so, Jeogla. I have completed my wool classing certificate I could bring more cattle out of the gorge to relieve the and have worked with my father in the shearing industry pressure there and minimise the damage of no feed in the earlier in my career, which has kept my interest in sheep event of wildfires, which are becoming more prevalent. and wool. By diversifying into tourism and earning off-farm In keeping with my love of the gorge country and income, these businesses enable the sharing of the funding all these enterprises, off-farm income is essential, expenses required to operate on the land, especially in and I enjoy working with the NPWS, cleaning the “East such a remote environment as “West Kunderang”. Kunderang Homestead” within the Oxley Wild Rivers However, I could not have gained the experience to National Park. overcome these challenges without the support and I also spend one day a week on average in Armidale advice of the myriad of people who have worked with me working at Dooner’s Furniture. I have gained invaluable and who have given me the opportunity to live and work knowledge of quality products with a difference in this on the land. I am deeply indebted to all these individuals retail sector. This also enables me to catch up with my 87 from my past, present and future. I look forward to year old Mother, Esma, for an overnight stay and chitchat! continuing these associations working on the land! New England focus. 33


D E B B I E Goos

C I N D Y McRae

B E R D I N E Warne




Tell us a little about your shop.

West Kunderang Recreational Retreat … Access to

Apart from being a centrally located hairdressing studio, we stock a range of locally made and sourced giftware for you to look at.

Riverine Wilderness!

Tell us about some of your products.

the Macleay River, surrounded by the Oxley Wild Rivers

I’d love to introduce New England readers to our new range of pure, natural and 100% botanical skincare products, free from artificial colours, preservatives and petrochemicals, lovingly handmade by Minnie & Lucille. We have two options for you. Face cream day for dry, mature skin • Enriched with beeswax and vitamin E. • Using nourishing plant oils: macadamia, avocado and rosehip • Infused with orange blossom water and orange oil Face cream night for dry, mature skin

A private working cattle property located on the banks of National Park, two hours’ drive southeast of Armidale. West Kunderang offers 10 secluded campsites, each with their own BBQ, firewood provided, sink, picnic table, toilet and tank water. Activities for you to enjoy include fishing for the mighty Macleay Bass (catch and release only), canoeing/kayaking, swimming, liloing, bushwalking, four wheel driving and helitours. A birdwatcher’s and photographer’s paradise, especially on

• Enriched with beeswax and vitamin E. • Using nourishing plant oils: macadamia, avocado and rosehip • Infused with rose water and lavender oil

the walk to the giant fig tree in the rainforest, and around

What other services/products do you offer?

family and friends (including pets). Bookings are essential

We have a beautiful range of artworks for sale, along with some leather goods and other sculptural works from local artists but mainly, of course, hairdressing! We love to style the community of the New England; why not come in and book an appointment today and get yourself a new look!

34 New England focus.

the historic mustering huts. Day visits or overnight camping available for you, your (locked gate access). For further information, please contact Cindy McRae 0429 192 810 / View our website at or visit our West Kunderang Facebook page.

Walking past the old tyre shop during the Thunderbolt Festival, I peeked inside and fell in love with its old rustic charm. I knew this was going to be my next venture. Most people would probably see an old, dirty shed that had been a mechanics workshop and tyre place for many years. All I could see was potential. Now, a few months later, I have completed phase one of creating Little Birdy. My gift shop is operational, and I’m passionately finding unique, quirky gifts and homewares to present my eclectic style to my customers. I am starting to get a good sense of the direction I would like my shop to go in. Phase two is an exciting one, because it involves the community. In cooperation with Backtrack Youth Works in Armidale we have built walls for my big hanger space, to create smaller stalls for community members. With the amount of interesting and creative people I have met in my short time, I am confident we can fill our spaces with artworks, photography, old wares and collectibles, furniture, garden sculptures and much more. The aim is to create a space full of energy and diversity. Phase three will become a multipurpose space for workshops, performances, talks, get togethers and exhibitions. I’m very excited to become part of this friendly and creative community and am looking forward to bringing people together.

Multi-awardwinning HR consultancy Pinnacle People Solutions continues to grow across Regional NSW.





ronwyn Pearson is a multiaward-winning Human Resources (HR) specialist with more than 25 years’ experience providing strategic and operational human resource advice and solutions to both the public and private sectors. Like many women, she wears a multitude of hats: CEO and Principal Consultant of Pinnacle People Solutions (PPS); Director of several high-profile regional boards; Regional Employment Trials (Northern Inland) Employment Facilitator; devoted Beagle owner; and, her most treasured role, that of Mum. PPS is a boutique HR company providing high-quality, corporate standard services to regionally-based, small-to-medium and not-forprofit enterprises. Bronwyn achieved an Australian political first leading the candidate recruitment and assessment process for CountryMinded in 2016. Recently, she was engaged by the Australian Democrats to conduct their candidate assessment process for the 2019 Federal election. “I feel proud that PPS’ integrity, and commitment to regional and rural Australia, were key criteria in being awarded the project,” Bronwyn said. “My vision for PPS from the very beginning was to make a meaningful contribution to the sustainability and growth of regional communities,” she added. “As a regionally-based business ourselves, we recognise the unique challenges faced both by individuals and businesses in regional communities and deal with these directly. We become integrated with the business and act as their trusted advisors - not just providing 'fly-in, fly-out’ support. We adapt our advice and services to the specific needs of each client, taking a holistic approach to everything we do”, she said. Giving back to the community is central to Bronwyn’s business vision. In the 2018 financial year, Bronwyn provided pro bono support valued at more than $90,000. Bronwyn mentors four-to-six young people annually, to assist them with entry into the workforce. Bronwyn sits on the Board of several regional

organisations that share her values of integrity and commitment to community. She is the President of the North and Northwest Community Legal Service Board, and a Director on the Board of the New England Conservatorium of Music. PPS has achieved NSW-wide Local Government Procurement approved contractor status for the provision of HR services and selection by tender as a preferred HR, Safety and Training supplier for Armidale Regional Council. They were appointed to support Homes North, the social housing provider for the New England North West, in scaling to meet the demands of the Social Housing Management Transfer project, taking effect in 2019. PPS has grown its client base 900% since inception. “We started in Armidale, and now operate across three states, including multiple rural and remote locations. In 2018, we significantly expanded our service provision into Tamworth, and are continuing to grow throughout regional NSW,” Bronwyn said. Consistent with her commitment to building regional community, and economic capacity, Bronwyn - with project collaborator Rechelle Leahy - was appointed Employment Facilitator for the Northern Inland Region for the Regional Employment Trials Program. In one of only 10 regions selected for the Program by the Australian Government, Bronwyn works with local stakeholders across the region to develop place-based strategies to address employment challenges and provide opportunities for those who are unemployed or at risk of unemployment. “I am privileged to have this incredible opportunity to help regional communities and businesses develop employment opportunities and build economic capacity. There are some very exciting projects in the pipeline,” Bronwyn concluded. It’s no surprise, therefore, that Bronwyn won the 2018 award for Outstanding Business Leader at both the Armidale Regional and New England North West Business Awards, going on to represent Armidale at state level.



ntroducing Gretel Khan, Recruitment Consultant with Pinnacle People Solutions. Gretel who joined PPS in January 2019, has more than 15 years' specialist experience in client account management, specialist recruitment and executive search. The Recruitment Consultant role is new to Pinnacle People Solutions and is the result of significant growth and employer demand across the New England North West. Pinnacle People Solutions is a boutique Human Resources (HR) business, specialising in providing tailored HR management advice and services to regionally based small-to-mediumsized businesses and the not-for-profit sector. PPS provides ethical and independent advice that is based on developing a comprehensive understanding of businesses and partnering with them to achieve their goals. Gretel's role is to work with Pinnacle People Solutions' clients to deliver high quality, tailored recruitment solutions that effectively match suitable candidates with roles and organisations. In this high paced role, she is responsible for implementing end to end recruitment processes, whilst developing and maintaining strategic relationships with clients and candidates. Gretel brings a wealth of experience with both metropolitan and regionally-based organisations to Pinnacle People Solutions. She is able to tap into her national networks to locate and match just the right person with the right skills for our clients. In fact, the more challenging the recruitment ask, the better. “I’m passionate about finding the perfect match between potential employees and our valued clients, to ensure that each client reaps the rewards of a great hire. Employees are the face of any organisation, so it is important that candidates’ expertise, personal attributes and presence in the community closely align with the ethos of our clients,” Gretel said. “I really like the way the business operates

with its focus on building relationships that are long term and strategic, and being a part of that is something I’m really enjoying,” she continued. CEO and Principal Consultant, Bronwyn Pearson feels that Gretel’s expertise has already contributed substantially to Pínnacle People Solutions. “Gretel has extensive experience in recruitment, along with excellent relationshipbuilding and outstanding communication skills. She has proven to be a truly welcome addition to our team,” Bronwyn said. “In addition, she is exceptionally skilled in high touch candidate recruitment processes and proactive search and utilises her extensive national networks to find candidates who may not yet have even considered their next employment opportunity. This approach is fundamental to Pinnacle People Solutions' recruitment and allows us to expand our offering,” Bronwyn concluded. The Pinnacle People Solutions team also includes Jessica Pearson, HR Project Officer. Jessica holds both undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications in the field of psychology and assists Pinnacle People Solutions' clients with all stages of recruitment, including candidate screening, interviewing, and referee checking. She also develops HR Framework suites for clients, including policies, procedures, position descriptions and employment contracts. Her experience in psychology has also afforded her strong skills in mediation, counselling, and personality profiling. Jessica has been on the Pinnacle People Solutions team since the company was founded in 2013. Pinnacle People Solutions is a true local success story. Headquartered in Armidale, it is continuing to grow and will soon be moving into new offices in the heart of the CBD. In addition, Pinnacle People Solutions will shortly be commencing recruitment processes for two new staff, to enhance their service offering.

PINNACLE New England focus. 35





P h o t o g r a p h y

tarting her own business from scratch, Emma encourages all women to discover their inner and outer beauty through her glamour and boudoir sessions, offering the only dedicated boudoir studio in Tamworth. But Emma is equally at home photographing gorgeous weddings or piloting drones for real estate shoots, and she is also an accredited professional photographer through the Australian Institute of Professional Photographers (AIPP)… Hi Emma. What's your association with the New England area? I moved from the Hunter Valley to a little property just out of Willow Tree 20 years ago, to be closer to my mum. I then moved to the Tamworth area and have been here ever since. I absolutely love the New England area and what it has to offer. I currently reside in Tamworth with my husband and two daughters. What kick started your interest in photography? I received my first camera as a birthday present when I was around eight years of age. I would always love taking photos of my horse and dogs and any other animals I could find. From there, I went to study photography in high school, using film and darkroom processing. Then in 2005, I started taking rodeo photos every weekend, which kicked off my interest

36 New England focus.

again, so I began studying - gaining credits and distinctions along the way. Tell us a bit about how your business, Rebel Heart Photography, was started and how it's evolved since ... I have always had a passion for photography and in 2007, I started my business, Emma Wells Photography, photographing rodeos and weddings of a weekend. In 2015 I started to operate as a full-time business and after a successful year, I was rewarded and honoured to be a finalist in the Tamworth Chamber Quality Business awards. In 2016 I rebranded my business as Rebel Heart Photography. The business plan was based on my values of “believe in yourself, pursue your passion - others’ opinions don’t matter - and always follow your heart”. I also wanted my clients to feel important and to know that I valued them, and I was willing to go out of my way to deliver the photography services that they required. This meant I needed a studio, so in 2018 I opened a business in the CBD of Tamworth. With the only dedicated boudoir studio in Tamworth, Rebel Heart Photography offers tasteful boudoir sessions in a glamorous, comfortable and friendly atmosphere. Since becoming full-time, I have been privileged to have my services appreciated through a variety of awards - the highlight being a finalist with the Australian Bridal Industry Academy.


I am an Accredited Professional Photographer and a member of the AIPP (Australian Institute of Professional Photographers). An Accredited Professional Photographer is a photographer who doesn't just claim to be a "professional", but earns that title by successfully completing the rigorous AIPP accreditation process. Accreditation is designed to give you, the consumer, confidence that your professional photographer is a proven, experienced, technically capable, professional practitioner, who complies with all legal business requirements, has appropriate insurance and who is willing to agree to the mandatory Code of Professional Practice and to the requirement of improving their photographic skills by committing to continue their professional development. I always continue to keep abreast of the current trends and technology, and in 2018 I was licensed to legally fly drones as a CASA Licensed and certified operator. I am proudly celebrating 12 years of being in business this month! You have a few areas you specialise in with your photography, and they're very diverse! Weddings, boudoir/

glamour, real estate, commercial and drone photography ... what special skills do you feel you need to have to work across all of these fields? Being diverse has increased my skills as a photographer in my specialised areas, which I thoroughly enjoy shooting. You wind up becoming a very well-rounded shooter, able to adapt to ever-changing scenarios and lighting situations! It has also enabled me to work full-time as a professional photographer during weekdays and have more time with my family on weekends, except during wedding season! And, most importantly, to be able to offer amazing customer service - I love what I do and believe customer service is the most important part of my business. I enjoy the ability to connect with clients from all walks of life in a professional, fun and relaxed atmosphere. What's involved with your boudoir and glamour photography? Do you offer a full "makeover" service with these types of photos? Through my passion for photography and desire to help women discover their inner and outer beauty, my Rebel Heart Photography’s signature boudoir and glamour sessions are


If there’s one thing I know, it’s that confidence is the key to amazi ng photographs.

helping women truly believe in their beauty. The premier women-only studio caters to all women, from those after the risqué Boudoir Sessions, to the more conservative Glamour Sessions, complete with hair, makeup and styling. Whether for your partner or just for yourself (as a reminder of the goddess you truly are), I will support and guide you every step of the way. We know how to make clients feel sassy, sexy and downright gorgeous. I want to fill you with a newfound sense of confidence, energy and pride. It’s the most exciting and enthralling type of therapy out there - seeing with your own eyes just how breathtaking you really are. If there’s one thing I know, it’s that confidence is the key to amazing photographs. So many of us women forget what it’s like to feel beautiful and strong. We get too busy with our lives, our family and our jobs. I will coach you down to your fingertips and capture your most beautiful and radiant self, from the moment you sit in the makeup chair to the moment you skip with confidence out of the studio. You’re going to feel like a million dollars! At the Rebel Heart Photography Boudoir & Glamour Studio, it’s all about you … Amplifying your unique style. Capturing your beautiful character. Flaunting your amazing body - every curve, every line, every perfect imperfection. The Rebel Heart experience is all about making you feel as comfortable and gorgeous as possible, and it begins the second you walk through the door … Our team will be ready to provide "you time", with a full makeover and a few words about what to expect throughout the shoot.

Once you’re ready to step into the spotlight, you’ll slip into your first outfit and let the Rebel Heart experience consume you. Trust us - you’ll love every second. Do something today that your future self will thank you for and walk away with memories to last a lifetime. Let's find the inner Rebel in you! Drone photography is a rapidly growing field in the photographic world these days. What type of drone/s do you use I ALWAYS CONTINUE ... and what sorts of TO KEEP ABREAST OF shoots do you most THE CURRENT TRENDS often use them for? AND TECHNOLOGY, I fly a DJI Phantom AND IN 2018 I WAS 4 Pro and a DJI Mavic LICENSED TO LEGALLY Pro. I help my clients possible and give them FLY DRONES AS A promote their business, beautiful images that CASA LICENSED AND real estate agents to reflect who they are as CERTIFIED OPERATOR. showcase properties a couple and take them from the best possible back to those special angle; and I also capture moments, time after stunning wedding and time. event images with a bird’s eye view. Photographing a wedding is never Drone photography is conducted by boring, as every one is unique, and photo me, Emma Steed, trading as Rebel Heart opportunities are endless. I love being able Photography. I am a professional pilot to be creative whilst capturing a day full of accredited and licensed by the Civil Aviation emotion, love and laughter. Safety Authority (CASA). I hold a Remote How far and wide will you travel for Pilots Licence (RePL) and RPA Operator’s shoots? Certificate (ReOC), and I am fully insured, I will travel anywhere! I absolutely love to ensuring drones are flown legally and safely travel and capture moments in new locations! and clients have maximum peace of mind. This last week I photographed a wedding in What's your favourite thing about Bendemeer, events at Copeton Waters and photographing someone's wedding? Lake Keepit, real estate shoots in Tamworth, I couldn’t name one favourite, as I love Wallabadah and Quirindi, and an engagement so many things about capturing weddings. I shoot just out of Tamworth. love to capture my clients’ incredible day in Some of the weddings I have coming up in the most natural, romantic and creative way

the next couple of months are in Tamworth and surrounds, Armidale and Glen Innes. I’ve shot weddings as far as south as Cooma NSW up to a rural property 100 km from Dalby in Queensland and many places in-between, such as Sydney, The Hunter Valley, Coffs Harbour, Moree, Armidale, Tamworth and all over the new England and North West. What do you hope to achieve in 2019? To continue to provide a professional photography service that is focused on providing amazing customer service and unique, impeccable imagery. Where can we find out more about you and see some examples of your work? To find out more, visit my website www. and check out examples of my latest work on Facebook and Instagram @rebelheartphotography Thanks Emma. New England focus. 37

Business Minds with Ingrid Rothe

of VIVID Thinking


This month FOCUS introduces the Armidale Business Chamber’s reimagined Women’s Networking Group, WiNG. Our interview today is with Deborah Hunter, a member of the Chamber’s Management Committee and the WiNG program leader.


hat is WiNG? We’ve built on the foundations of the former New England Enterprising Women’s Breakfast (NEEW) to create WiNG, which will be focused on women’s professional interests and issues, as well as providing opportunities for professional development. The idea underpinning WiNG is to empower women to take flight. The i in WiNG also stands for inspiring, insightful, informative, and interesting, representing both our membership and the intended calibre of our guest speakers. We are starting with a bi-monthly breakfast, and in the near future we will be developing and executing a survey to engage our existing membership, identify future program direction and great speakers. The former NEEW group has been in abeyance for a while; why did the Chamber bring it back? Ever since the former breakfasts ceased to be on the agenda, we have been approached by women asking when it was coming back. So many women told us that the only reason they had originally joined the Chamber was for the breakfasts. That was certainly the case for me. What that really showed us is that the need for a networking group focused on women’s issues still had its place. With Meralli Solar as a sponsor waiting in the wings, 2019 has been the ideal time for us to relaunch. Why does the Armidale region need a women’s networking group? WiNG is intended to connect women, providing support, opportunity and the ability to find role models and mentors in each other, 38 New England focus.

There is a significant lack of females as well as create shared experiences in an represented in parliament - something all environment with a uniquely female focus. political parties need to be working towards There is still gender inequality in all aspects improving. The formation of the lobby group of life - and especially in business. For “WomenVote”, formed by three Sydney based women, we still operate in a world where a women solicitors, underpins and articulates qualified doctor expressing concern over their the deep concerns women have regarding the exhaustion and after being on call for 180 gender gap. continuous hours was And, it’s women labelled an “emotional starting businesses in the female”. It’s fair to say search for the fulfilment younger women today and flexibility they may experience less “ism” not be able to find in the in their professional The idea underpinning traditional workplace. lives, but if and when WiNG is to empower women In this environment you have children, then to take flight. The i in WiNG also stands for inspiring, women still need spaces the juggle begins. insightful, informative, and that focus on their issues We still have a long interesting, representing both - safe spaces where way to go. our membership and the their lived experience is Ultimately, it’s about intended calibre of our guest understood. And through representation and speakers. our shared experiences, creating safe places for we can support and women to discuss their empower each other in issues. our endeavours. Aren’t women Why does female already adequately participation in the represented? workforce matter? Despite “achieving” In the simplest terms, equality, a significant our local, regional and national economy gender pay gap in Australia remains. Women benefits significantly from active participation find themselves over-represented in insecure from our whole population. In a report work, part-time and casual work, or find prepared for the Office For Women, the ABS themselves no longer on a promotion suggests that women’s under-representation in trajectory. Access to affordable childcare the economy costs Australia billions of dollars continues to affect workforce participation, in unrealised productivity potential. and this impacts on our financial security as How’s it going so far? we get older. Increasingly, due to that financial Our first 2019 breakfast in February featured insecurity, coupled with divorce, or death the amazing Lucy MacKenzie of U Goose; it of a partner, middle class older women are sold out, so we are off to a flying start! becoming the face of homelessness.

How does it fit in with the Chamber’s purpose? The Chamber’s focus in 2018 was on increasing our voice in support of our businesses’ issues, helping to celebrate Armidale’s business achievements through the Awards, and the open networking evening each month. The WiNG program is being launched in the context of a whole range of activities for our business community. We have developed a draft strategy, which we will be consulting with our membership about and have planned what is intended to be a series of Leadership Events with high calibre speakers on highly topical subjects. One of these events will feature the Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia, Dr Philip Lowe, at a dinner on 19th September 2019; Anthony Fox is developing this program. We also intend to pilot a small business mentoring program to be led by Monty Maguire. Who will be presenting at the next breakfast? We are very excited to announce that the next breakfast will feature the founders of WomenVote. WomenVote is a non-partisan lobby group that will scrutinise parties for their record on, and offerings for, women. They are keen to hear the rural and regional perspective on the issues that matter for women. The breakfast will be held on Thursday 11th April. Mark your diaries now! Thanks Deborah. Photo, L - R: WiNG organising committee members - Emalene Gemmell, Shona Eichorn, Deborah Hunter, Ingrid Rothe, Aileen MacDonald.



Emalene Gemmell Family Law is a specialist law firm with offices in Armidale and Uralla. Principal Solicitor, Emalene Gemmell, launched the now flourishing practice in 2015.



malene has over 10 years’ experience. Her postgraduate qualifications in family law include a Master of Private International Laws (Family) completed in the UK; Emalene is an Accredited Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner; a Nationally Accredited Mediator; and an Independent Children’s Lawyer. Emalene is a passionate advocate and a skilled mediator chairing property and parenting mediations in private practice, as well as Mediator on behalf of the Legal Aid Commission NSW. Emalene has completed postgraduate qualifications in trauma, relationship therapy, complex trusts, conveyancing, succession and estate planning - including farm debt mediations, intergenerational transfers, and estate litigation. Emalene’s growing team includes: Christine Sullivan, Paralegal; Affrazia Pfister, Administration Assistant; and, Jen Shephard, Mental Health Clinician and Consultant to the Firm. Christine works exclusively with Emalene, assisting with all aspects of her busy family law practice, whilst also managing conveyancing transactions, estate drafting and Probate applications. Affrazia is not only the first point of contact for the firm and the friendly face who greets you; she is also responsible for office administration, diary management and e-filing. Jen is an early infancy mental health advocate and registered cognitive and behavioural therapist. Jen assists families and carers throughout the New England with difficult behaviours as they present in

their natural environment. As a consultant to the firm, Jen offers a point of referral to assisting our clients and their families with the often-challenging aspects of separation and childhood development. Jen has post graduate qualifications in Family Dispute Resolution and is a Child Inclusive Practitioner. What drew you to family law? I started the practice because I wanted to provide clients with a distinct approach to family law. People need a flexible mix of good advice, strong representation and an understanding of the emotion involved. It is both complex and challenging. As lawyers, it is our job to guide clients through the legal process, so the best possible outcomes, given each individual circumstance, can be achieved. Formerly Emalene Gemmell Solicitor, we recently rebranded to Emalene Gemmell Family Law to better reflect our focus and expertise in family law. As family law specialists, what services does your practice provide? As a specialist family law firm we offer a range of services across family and relationship law. We cover four key areas: resolution pathways; parenting matters; financial matters; and planning for your family’s future, including wills and estates and succession planning. Resolution pathways are key to our practice. When a family breaks down, Court is not the only option. Most separated families can reach agreement without filing Court proceedings. We assist in this process. Wherever possible, we adopt alternative dispute resolution practices. We do this because this approach can result in more cost-effective and timely resolution of matters. Should matters progress to Court, we

comfort of their own are passionate and home or aged care dedicated advocates. I started the practice because I wanted to facility. After hours and Our clients rely on provide clients with a weekend appointments our experience and distinct approach to are also possible by prior expertise to achieve family law. People need a arrangement. the best possible flexible mix of good advice, What has been the outcome for them. strong representation and secret to your firm’s This philosophy, an understanding of the growth? backed by our emotion involved. As a locally-based training, allows us firm, we have a genuine to adopt a “holistic” understanding of the approach to our unique challenges clients’ needs, helping associated with close-knit them successfully regional communities, navigate the legal family properties and process. Parenting arrangements can be delicate and generational relationships. emotional. We not only help with parenting We pride ourselves on providing high agreements; we also have expertise in more quality, expert legal advice. Our exclusive focus complex matters and can help clients with child on family law ensures that we have current safety and domestic violence issues: custody; and relevant qualifications, experience, and relocating with children; child abduction issues knowledge that we can apply to our clients’ (Hague Convention); and surrogacy and donor needs. Our support staff also undertake agreements. continuing professional development. On the financial front, we help our clients I believe our real skill is that we listen. We with property settlements involving corporate can best represent our clients by getting to structures, businesses and trusts, prepare know their individual circumstances. Clients financial agreements and asset protection often express that they feel confident in the including estate planning, child support and advice they are given, and that they trust our spousal maintenance, negotiating property guidance as we achieve the best results for settlements and financial arrangements. them. What geographic area does your practice Our staff are friendly and approachable, cover? and as a firm we uphold an extremely high We assist clients throughout the New standard of quality care. One of the things England North West and throughout Australia. that really underpins my approach to law is We understand that travelling to our offices that our service is boutique and personalised. is not always possible, so we offer telephone, To us, our clients are always people first, with Skype, or Facetime appointments at no extra circumstances unique to their situation, and charge. At times we visit our clients in the not just another “matter”.


New England focus. 39


What businesses are you involved with? LM: I am a director of a farming grazing business at Wollomombi. I do office work to paddock work. I love my photography business too. DG: My business is Change Play. I love working with business leaders on change management and corporate strategy. What is the best bit about being in business? DG: I can tailor my workload to fit with the other things I want to do, and one of those is giving back to the community. LM: I am grateful it has given my husband and I the opportunity to raise three amazing children and the chance now to give back to others. Why do you give back? DG: Being in business is often hard work, because it is always there … so one way to switch off is to give back and somehow make a difference. It’s an opportunity to ask, “How can I help?”

40 New England focus.

LM: Life hands us all many ups and downs ... it’s extremely gratifying to think that when others are having downs, you can do something to help in some small way. What is ASKING - “WHAT ELSE?” DG: Asking “What Else?” is the best thought-provoking question for any leader to have in their toolbox, so we decided to hold a Young Regional Leaders Summit for young people (18 - 35 years) and mentors to challenge the way we lead. All Summit proceeds go to Backtrack. When is the Summit? LM: 19th - 20th August 2019. There is a halfday “think tank”, then a day of special guest speakers, interactive question times and dinner to finish. We are in the final stages of planning, so go to to register your interest.



the biggest challenge, plus track work riders are he quiet little village of in short supply. Invergowrie and surrounds What are the best horses you have worked is home to a surprising array of unique businesses and with and owned? interesting people. Sandra I have worked with so many wonderful horses (Sandy) McCormack is one over the years, but Seen Im, Storm Ahead and Status King certainly hold a special place in my of these individuals, training race horses at her heart. equestrian centre … she’s worked with some Seen Im won Saturday at Eagle Farm, amongst very talented horses over the years. She tells us many others, including the Glen Innes Cup. a little about her involvement with the racing Storm Ahead - he was Horse of the Year in industry … 2015, won the Wauchope Cup, the Curlewis Hi Sandra. What’s your background in the New England area? Cup and many other races. I was living in BeauStatus King is a good, desert with my husband, honest bush horse, Wayne, and we decided winning at Deepwater in in 2010 that we wanted consecutive years. to be closer to my What qualities do you family. I have two sisters look for in a horse? I have worked with so in Armidale and wanted many wonderful horses I look for good to spend more time with over the years, but ‘Seen Im’, conformation, and they them. ‘Storm Ahead’ and ‘Status must have a good temKing’ certainly hold a We brought our horse, perament to work with. special place in my heart. Seen Im to the Guyra Do you think horses Cup, where he ran secare born to race? ond, and we decided that Yes, I do think most it would be a good move horses are born to race; to the area. you just have to harness In 2010, we purchased their enthusiasm. an equestrian centre at Why do you train race Invergowrie. horses? Where did your interest in both horses and I just love working with the race horses. I love racing begin? them so much, that when they finish racing, It all started in Rose Hill in the 1970s, where I they retire to our top paddock, where they are worked for the late Pat Quinn and Curly Edgar spoilt rotten. as a strapper. What’s on the agenda for you in the future? I also looked after a number of horses, includI have had a year off to recover from an ankle ing Go Mod and Remember Jim, who were both operation, and we have just taken on a new very successful horses. horse, Accee Delighted. We have high hopes Training race horses doesn’t strike me as for him, with a goal being the Armidale Cup in being an easy career choice ... what are 2020. We will start slowly together and hopefulsome of the constant challenges you face, ly see some great wins! particularly in our area? How can we contact you? The winters! After spending so many years Call Sandy and Wayne: 0414 802 724. on the coast in Queensland, we are still getting We’re at 1218 Bundarra Rd, Invergowrie. used to the cold starts. The long distance travel to races is probably Thanks Sandra.


ANNA SUTHERLAND HAS BECOME A VERY SUCCESSFUL YOUNG ARTIST AND DESIGNER. She tells FOCUS about her passion for textiles and her journey so far.


ow long have you lived in the area, and tell us about your background? I was born in Armidale and grew up on our family property east of Uralla. I went to NEGS in Armidale, where I enjoyed studying Visual Arts and Design & Technology to Year 12. I then studied a Bachelor of Visual Arts (Hons) majoring in Textiles at The ANU School of Art. I found the opportunities in Canberra while pursing a creative career were abundant; there is such a fabulous creative scene down there. I worked as a Textiles & Home Ec Assistant in Canberra and Brisbane girls' schools, before concentrating solely on my own business. A year ago I moved to Sydney, but any excuse and I am back home. I am very fortunate that my business can follow me wherever I go. What is your label called, and what makes your products different from others? Originally my label was Maddison Jayne, but from 2018 I have been using my own name as my label. I have found it to be a really positive change to growing my business. Putting a name to a face and products made a lot more sense to customers. My product range includes homewares and gifts, ranging from cushions to ottomans and hand printed tea-towels to toiletry bags. My products are eye-catching, as they are bright, colourful and heavily patterned. My designs are always changing as are my colour combinations. I love to create designs and know that they are limited edition, as the majority are screen-printed and therefore I only do a short run. When expanding my product range, I created some of my designs to be

digitally printed, which allowed for the use of different fabrics like velvet for my cushions. When and why did your interest in textile design begin? I’ve always enjoyed being creative. As a youngster I had containers full of craft goodies and copious amounts of glitter glue. After school I knew I wanted to do a B. Visual Arts, but was undecided on a major in Textiles or Print Media. When I saw the size of the print table at The ANU School of Art, I was sold on textiles. The thought of designing my own fabrics sparked a passion that I wanted to pursue into the future. Throughout the course my main focus was on screen printing, dyeing and weaving, processes which I still use. I launched my design business in 2014 after finishing uni and a small business course. I feel like I’ve come a long way in such a short time, and yet I have so many ideas that I want to pursue. What’s involved in your screen-printing process? My designs begin as a simple line drawing. They are then developed and transformed on the computer into a repeat design. To screenprint my multi colour designs I have to separate each colour into a different file, so they can be exposed on to my silk screens. At the moment I send my screens and designs away to be exposed, as I don’t have a dark room or extra large exposure unit ... yet! I like to create very tight repeats; I enjoy the challenge and love seeing the design transform as I print each layer. I mix my own colours, making them as bright as I possibly can. I then print the designs on to coloured fabrics, beginning with the darkest colour, finishing with the lightest colour or a touch of white for

I stock my own

that POP! I head back to Sydney products and have I have a 5 m mid June, but I’m sure selected products from print table in Australian artisans and it won’t be the last time designers I have met at my studio (our Uralla sees me. I’ll be markets and events. shearers' quarters back for sure! at home) which What’s planned for is an absolute the rest of 2019? dream; it makes I’m really looking printing lengths forward to the months or numerous tea ahead! towels a breeze. I’ll be FINALLY My favourite designs to screen-print are the launching my indoor/outdoor cushions, which multi-colour repeat designs of three or more is very exciting. Its been a work in progress, colours. sourcing Australian made and printed fabric You currently have a business in Uralla; that I am happy with. The cushions will be tell us more about it? launched in mid April. Yes! In November last year I moved back On the 30th March I’ll be at the Seasons of home and opened a gift shop Anna & Co. New England Expo, Hampden Park, Uralla. It's Artisan Homewares and Gifts. My partner was such a wonderful event, which I enjoy being a heading overseas to work for six months, and part of each year. I thought this was a great opportunity to open Then in April I’m attending The Sydney Royal a shop and was lucky such a beautiful retail Easter Show. I have a stall in the Fashion and space was available - 82 Bridge St, Uralla - that Style pavilion. It will be the biggest event I’ve I couldn’t resist. ever done, so I’m very excited. I stock my own products and have selected Until June you will find me at Anna & Co. products from Australian artisans and Artisan Homewares and Gifts. It’s a beautiful designers I have met at markets and events. space to work in, so call in and say hi. I have enjoyed creating a fresh and fun gift Where can we find you? shop, with many brands unique to the New Brick and Mortar: Anna & Co. Artisan England area. You may even meet my mum, Homewares and Gifts, 82 Bridge St, Cathie who works in the shop when I’m busy Uralla, NSW. Facebook and Instagram @ printing and sewing; she does a lot behind the Website: scene too. My parents and partner are all very Email: supportive, always encouraging me to just do Thanks Anna. it! You won’t know until you try. New England focus. 41

They say 'nothing fails like success', because of course success takes place over previous success. You won’t be afraid to fail when your intention, your vision and your ethics are in place.


Playing is Learning for Life with TG’s Child Care (TG’s)

quality-care and education from educators, sup-

“Going to TG's every day is awesome. It is our second family!” says Meg, “The children and their carers feel they are part of our family too.”

That’s why the TG’s Way is Playing is Learning

TG’s is such a rich environment, where building relationships and nurturing every single person’s gifts is at the heart of everything they do. They have a lot of love to give and that shows every day through the smiles, laughter and hugs from the children.

biggest influencers in the work they do! “When

Meg and Bron both started at TG’s as parents, then educators and team leaders. Meg is now Centre Director of Armidale and Bron is Centre Manager at Uralla. They are absolutely convinced TG’s is an industry leader in child care. They know first-hand how TG’s makes a difference in each child’s early years with the

and learning. Meg says. “Each child’s gifts are

42 New England focus.

porting their growth and learning through play. for Life. Bron says that as mothers, their children are the we go to TG’s we do not stop being mothers. We become second mums to TG’s children!” Both are known as the Mother Hens of TG's! As mothers and Centre Managers, they stay curious to the needs of each child, always listening constantly being nurtured and it's awesome to see each child discover them too, I just love it!” TG’s offers child care and preschool from 6 weeks to 6 years of age. Visit our website


Who are you? And who are you in relation to your career? Being successful extends across all dynamics in life. You can’t solely be successful in your career and have longevity if you don’t create a successful lifestyle as a whole. Success for me is not a statement of what I’m doing; it’s a statement of who and what I’m being. I don’t have a career; I have a lifestyle, where I am producing as a result of what I’m passionate about, with a company whose beliefs and goals align with mine, where they produce something that fulfills people’s dreams (home ownership). Living this way is one of the greatest gifts I can give my kids (12 and 10) as an ethical role model, encouraging them to go and achieve anything that they want. Women play a momentous role in business. I work among savvy men and women within Hibbards and rub shoulders with national and

international business men and women, giving and receiving accolades for great achievements from the many projects we work on. They say “nothing fails like success”, because of course success takes place over previous success. You won’t be afraid to fail when your intention, your vision and your ethics are in place. Success will continue to prosper. I work on the promotion and public relations of Hibbards throughout our regions and within the company itself - creating a well-rounded, fully developed presence that truly shows the community the core and heart of what Hibbards believes in. Everyone in all our regions will know who we are. My bigger picture is in creating financial freedom for myself and my family and to better the conditions among family, friends, work colleagues, and the community as a whole.

T I N A Skipper

C H E L S E A Schaefer



Are you looking for something fun and creative to do with a friend, mother, daughter, sister, husband or simply by yourself? At My Rural Retreat we run Creative Arts and Health and Well-being Workshops in our garden. I am passionate about fresh food, gorgeous surrounds and bringing like-minded people together. This year I’m really excited about the quality and variety of workshops on offer.

Describe your business in one sentence. Moin Morris Schaefer is a progressive, enthusiastic and dynamic law practice with offices in Armidale and Port Macquarie. Our team is committed to providing quality legal advice across a broad range of areas, including family law, crime, wills and estate planning, employment law, buying and selling property, business and commercial law and representing our clients in all courts and tribunals.

Presenters are coming from all over Australia to share their talents and knowledge. We are running a range of one day and weekend workshops and if you want to immerse yourself, you can stay in our self-contained private cottages.

What are you most proud of in your business?

Autumn 2019 Series:

How do balance your work/family life?

Photographic Thinking for Social Media, Sat 16th March with Simon Scott

We are a family friendly firm that recognises the importance of a work/life balance, which enables me to have a fulfilling professional career and also enjoy family life.

Sourdough Bread Making, Sat 23rd March with Chris Wellard of Wellard’s Artisan Bakehouse

I am most proud of the fact that we can serve a diverse range of clients, from ultra-high net worth individuals to society’s most vulnerable juveniles.

What is your business vision for 2019?

Ceramic Platter, Pinch Pot & Spoon, Sat 6th April with Tracy Murray from “Shut Up & Relax”

The firm’s vision is to provide high quality legal services to our clients and give our staff a professional purpose.

Ceramic Tea Cup and Milk Jug, Sun 7th April with Tracy Murray from “Shut Up & Relax”

We aim to be the most respected and successful legal practice in our region and to continue to produce work at a consistently high standard for our clients throughout the state.

The Art of Wellness Weekend, Fri 17th - 19th May with Fiona Galloway from Nourished Space

New England focus. 43


Clichéd it may seem … but dreams can come true! Armidale lass Hayley Whitehill is currently enjoying being a part of the Round Square International Exchange Program in the “land of the brave”. Both a Highland Dancer and a bagpiper, it’s long been Hayley’s wish to visit Scotland, and she was very excited to share the experience with us …




i Hayley. Please tell us a little bit about yourself … Hi Jo. I’m 15 years old. I was born in Armidale and live with my mum, dad and little brother Blake, who is nearly 11. Both Blake and I attend The Armidale School (TAS) and this year I will commence Year 10. You're a Highland Dancer, and you also play the bagpipes! How old were you when you first started these activities? I started Highland Dancing in 2010, when I was just seven. Since that time, I have had weekly dance lessons, performed at numerous events, participated in workshops and completed exams. I have enjoyed a very successful and busy dance career thus far, at both social and competitive levels. Competitive dancing is a big commitment and requires a lot of travel. I have danced as far north as Townsville to as far south as Melbourne and everywhere in between. One day I hope to get the opportunity to compete overseas in Scotland. To dance at The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo is definitely a goal of mine. Bagpipes are an essential part of Highland Dancing and because I am also a musician, I was keen to learn to play the bagpipes. You don’t see too many, but Highland Dancers make great pipers - it’s all about the tempo! Whilst dancing at the Aberdeen Highland Gathering in 2015, I purchased my first practice chanter from St Kilda. Twelve months later, Mum and Dad bought me my precious McCallum pipes. I have already enjoyed some amazing experiences with my piping and have competed at both solo and pipe band level. I do envisage that at some stage, I will play at the World Piping Championships in Scotland. To pipe as part of The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo is also a goal of mine. 44 New England focus.

Where do you think your love of "all things Scottish" stems from? My love for all things Scottish is very unique. However, my mum was a Highland Dancer and my nan is to thank for my desire to dance. My great grandfather played the bagpipes, and my brother Blake is now learning the snare drum. With Buchan family history, it is definitely in my blood, and this gives me great incentive and a good reason to follow my Scottish dreams. You're actually communicating with me from bonnie Scotland right now, as you're taking part in the Round Square International Exchange Program. How long will you get to spend overseas, and where are you staying? A big HELLO to all of my family and friends in Armidale! I left our glorious summer early and flew into the UK on Monday 7th January, just in time to start the Spring Term at Gordounstoun School in Scotland. Gordounstoun is one of the leading full boarding schools in the UK, set within the beautiful Moray countryside. I’m currently on exchange through the Round Square Program, boarding at Gordonstoun with some twenty other Year 10 students from all over the world. I have made friends from Canada, Russia, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and Dubai, just to name a few. I believe the school has a culturally diverse community of students from over forty nationalities. Round Square is a world-wide association of 190 schools that all share the same ethos of teaching social responsibility, as well as academic excellence. Being able to attend Gordonstoun School in Scotland is the heart and purpose of my exchange. I am extremely fortunate to be at a school where I can participate in their culture and do what I love best - dancing and piping. Founded in 1934, the historic buildings at Gordonstoun have a real “Hogwarts-like” feeling and are complemented by a state-of-the-art Sports Centre and a Performing Arts Theatre.

I’m currently on exchange through I am studying dance, I forward to returning the Round Square Program, am having private piping to Gordonstoun for a boarding at Gordonstoun tuition and I am looking jammed pack second half with some twenty other forward to playing and of term. Year 10 students from all competing with the What have you found over the world. I have made Gordonstoun School Pipe out about Scotland/ Scottish people that you friends from Canada, Russia, South Band. didn't know before you Africa, Australia, New Zealand and As we speak, I am left Australia? Dubai, just to name a few. enjoying the mid-term I’ve discovered that break, staying with my Scotland is not a huge host family in Dundee. country, and to travel from The school term finishes one place to another is so much quicker than in on the 29th March, and then I hope to spend Australia. We travelled to Edinburgh by bus for a little more time here exploring the UK before one netball game, and all was achievable in one returning back to Australia at the end of April. day! What have been some of your favourite Scottish people are just adorable, and I wish experiences during your exchange so far? to stay long enough to acquire that admirable In defiance of the seasonal temperature and accent. short days, Scotland is historically beautiful, and What do you hope to take away/learn from I’ve enjoyed walking across a fresh blanket of the whole exchange experience? snow for the very first time. It’s fair to say that I’m loving Scotland and Our first exchange excursion was to Loch having an amazing time. From my exchange Ness in the Scottish Highlands, with a visit to the experience, I hope to embrace and learn from the magnificent Urquhart Castle. The ruins of the diversity that our world has to offer. I’ll cherish castle provided a glimpse of medieval life and the worldwide friendships I’ve made here in although the view over Loch Ness was stunning, Scotland. unfortunately “Nessie” was not sighted on this I can highly recommend to my friends and day. other students that if ever they are given the Windmill is my boarding house at opportunity to go on international exchange, just Gordonstoun, and we have lots of interhouse do it. sporting competitions and social nights. I felt I sincerely thank my parents for financially right at home at the Burns Night Ceilidh, with giving me this life changing experience and for lots of dancing and a taste of haggis for the first everyone else in Australia and Scotland who have time. Outdoor education is a huge part of the encouraged and supported me leading up to and Gordonstoun ethos, and seamanship was an during my exchange. My five-year DREAM has interesting but freezing introduction to sailing on come true! the Moray Firth. #broaderexperiencesbroaderminds My host family have taken me to Edinburgh #plusestenvous and St Andrews, and we plan to do some #thereismoreinyou countryside hiking. I’m going to Highland Hustle Thanks Hayley. tomorrow, so maybe we can all be hustling in Interview: Jo Robinson. Armidale by the end of the year. I am looking






50 cover INFINITY





New England focus. 45











LIFESOLVER Financial 50 is no longer, by any stretch of the imagination, old age. We are living longer than ever before and need to act to ensure not only our independence and financial stability, but to allow us to continue to do the things we want to do for as long as we want to do them. Matt Meehan is an Adviser, Certified Financial Planner and Chartered Accountant with more than 24 years’ experience in providing financial services and solutions. He recently launched Lifesolver Financial a cloud-based financial coaching service that combines high-quality, professional advice with an easy-to-use app that allows you to take full control of your finances. Independent of any one bank or insurance provider, Lifesolver gives you instant access to your whole financial life in one easy-to-access portal, with all your financial information in one

place - cash flow, bank accounts, investments, superannuation, debts, credit cards, life insurance, Wills - accessible anywhere, anytime, on any device. Lifesolver helps you prepare for life’s uncertainties, ensuring you receive the right financial advice, empowering you to put plans and cover in place that will provide you with financial certainty in the face of life’s mishaps and misadventures, as well as planning for your future, so you can enjoy life! Matt’s fee-for-service philosophy ensures Lifesolver’s advice is always an objective analysis and evaluation of your needs and options, so you can make the best decisions for your circumstances. His policy of absolute transparency ensures that any advice is not coloured by hidden commissions or kickbacks.



EDICINES FOR DIABETES There are many medicines that are used for diabetes. There are tablets and injections that lower blood sugar levels or help our bodies to use our own insulin better, as well as injectable insulin itself.

HERBS THAT LOWER BLOOD SUGAR LEVELS As is the case with commencing any herbs, vitamins, minerals etc., it is important to discuss whether this is suitable with your health care professional. If you start taking a herb that lowers blood sugar levels, there is a risk of your levels getting too low. Prescription medicines

may need to have their dosages lowered in this ALCOHOL AND DIABETES MEDICINES case. Alcohol lowers blood sugar levels. When Examples of herbs that can lower blood alcohol is combined with other things that sugar levels are: lower blood sugar levels, there is a danger of the levels dropping too Aloe vera low, which is known Stinging nettle as hypoglycaemia. Fenugreek Symptoms of VITAMIN D CAN HELP OUR hypoglycaemia can Turmeric/curcumin BODY TO USE INSULIN range from feeling Gymnema sylvestre BETTER AND SO BLOOD clammy and dizzy SUGAR LEVELS CAN BE FIBRE SUPPLEMENTS to death. Therefore, LOWER THAN ANTICIPATED. AND DIABETES alcohol should be IT IS A GOOD IDEA TO MEDICINES avoided if diabetes medicines are being taken.


VITAMIN D AND DIABETES MEDICINES Vitamin D is commonly taken as it is important in preventing and treating osteoporosis. Vitamin D can help our body to use insulin better and so blood sugar levels can be lower than anticipated. It is a good idea to monitor blood sugar levels if you are being treated for diabetes and start taking vitamin D. The amount of diabetes medicine needed may decrease. 46 New England focus.

As fibre supplements decrease the absorption of many medicines, it’s important to have these at least two hours away from diabetes medicines and insulin.

APPETITE SUPPRESSANTS AND DIABETES MEDICINES These may reduce appetite and blood sugar levels. They may, however, have an effect on the heart. If blood sugar levels drop too low, it can affect the beating of the heart.












Building so you can be closer to the family? The time is now to build your next home and you’re not looking forward to the stress?



any folk in the “50 to infinity” group are moving to be closer to their family. Do you get clients wanting to build close to family? Absolutely! This is a big segment for us. Folks in this stage of life really don’t need the stress of building a new home. Clients get to the point when they’ve decided they need to build a new home and just want it done ASAP. That’s where we come into play. With our streamlined factory-built modular home building process, we can build four bedroom home. Smaller granny them a custom designed home and flats get constructed in one module. have them move in so much sooner As the size of the home increases, all than if they had built on site. THIS IS REALLY we do is use two or more modules to What makes it easier building THE WAY BUILDING achieve the size you need. We build with Uniplan? SHOULD BE DONE! the complete home in the factory; We understand how nerve IN OUR FACTORY when it is built and ready for delivery wracking and insurmountable WE CAN SET UP we separate the modules, transport building a new home can be. That’s THE BUILDING them to site and put them together why we’ve fine-tuned a process to PROCESS SO again. Once we’re done, you would make the journey as easy as we can EFFICIENTLY. hardly be able to notice it was built - right from designing to suit your that way. Smart building! needs through to council approval Tell me a bit about your company then construction in our factory and history. finally installation on site. We’re there Our dream is to keep innovating and finding ways to to help, guide and advise you every step of the way. have our clients move into their new home much sooner What makes factory-built modular homes quicker to than if they had built it on site. We’ve been in the game for build? almost 20 years (our 20 year anniversary is in September This is really the way building should be done! In our this year!) and we’ve grown from a small team of three factory we can set up the building process so efficiently. to a staff of well over 100. We can now produce a fully No weather delays. No waiting for trades. No excuses! Of completed home very second day! The same family course, we still have to go through the Council approval business ethics live with us today. Our first advice to our process (which we handle for you) so that part is just like clients who are thinking of building is - the most important any other type of building. Once it is approved by Council is thing is choosing a builder you can trust. We look forward where the magic starts! You really should come check out to building not only a home for you, but also a strong and our factory to see how it all happens. Also, you may like to enduring relationship. jump on our website and read our article titled: “5 ways What’s the first step of the journey? modular construction saves time and gives cost certainty”. Get in touch with us to make a start. Browse our website, How big can you build? Do modular homes have size give us a call or drop in to see our display homes. See you constraints? soon! We build everything from a small granny flat to a large

You’ve decided you need a new home and you want it done ASAP but you really don’t need stress and hassle in your life at this stage. We understand how nerve wracking and insurmountable it can all seem. We’ve helped so many folk move closer to their family by making the process easy. With Uniplan’s factory-built modular homes we can make the building process easy and guide you every step of the way Reach out to our friendly team today so that we can help you move into your custom built modular home sooner than if you built on site. Ask us about our 5 steps to building a new home with minimum fuss.

Call us today on 1800 864 752 or Visit our display Homes Drop around to 22 Myrtle Drive to see our stunning displays between 9am - 5pm Monday to Friday and Saturday by appointment @uniplangroup

1800 UNIPLAN (1800 864 752) 22 MYRtle DRive | ARMiDAle 2350 New England focus. 47


ESTATE PLANNING with Moin Morris Schaefer




Moin Morris Schaefer is one of the leading firms in regional NSW for expertise in estate planning. At Moin Morris Schaefer, we do not provide “cookie cutter” wills. Our approach is that every person and their family is unique and must be treated individually with regard to their particular circumstances. This tailored approach to estate planning ensures that you will receive an estate plan which works for you and your family.

48 New England focus.



What is estate planning? Estate planning is more than simply a Will. Whilst having an appropriately structured Will in place is very important, our estate planning team also advise on and create solutions in relation to: a) Avoiding estate litigation and contested Wills; b) Minimising tax for your relatives and beneficiaries; c) Protecting your child’s inheritance from divorce or relationship breakdown, as well as financial troubles and bankruptcy; d) Vulnerable beneficiaries, such as those with addictions, substance abuse issues or a disability; e) Modern family issues, such as blended families, same sex couples and granny flat arrangements; f) Ensuring that assets outside of your estate, such as superannuation, pensions, family trusts and life insurance are dealt with as part of an overall, cohesive estate plan in conjunction with your trusted advisors (such as accountant and/or



financial planner). g) Business and farm assets, including intergenerational transfers, business succession planning and buy/sell agreements; h) Decision making in circumstances where you are alive, but no longer able to make decisions for yourself due to injury, illness or sedation (Enduring Powers of Attorney and Appointments of Enduring Guardians), with bespoke powers and conditions for these roles; i) End of life decision-making (Advanced Care Directives). When should I review my estate plan? You should review your Will when significant life events occur, such as marriage, divorce, the birth of children, impending retirement or as you accumulate wealth and assets. This review should be at least every five - 10 years, as not only your circumstances change, but also those of your beneficiaries, such as your children and



grandchildren. Moin Morris Schaefer provide complimentary estate plan health checks, to provide you with peace of mind that your arrangements are up to date and appropriate for your individual circumstances. Why Moin Morris Schaefer? Expertise. Our estate planning team is second to none in regional NSW. We have two lawyers (Richard and Cameron) who have been admitted to the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP), which is an accreditation in the area recognised globally. Of 30,000 lawyers in NSW, there are only nine outside Sydney who are STEP accredited. Richard holds a Master of Laws in Wills & Estates and Cameron is also an Accredited Business Law Specialist (QLD). Greg Moin has 30 years’ experience in the area,

with a particular focus on farm and business succession. Greg is also a Tribunal Member for the NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal (Guardianship Division), which reviews powers of attorney and enduring guardians, appoints financial managers/ oversees end of life decisions. Moin Morris Schaefer prides itself on providing a city service at regional rates. By using an expert, you can potentially save your estate and beneficiaries thousands of dollars in unnecessary court costs, tax liabilities and through divorce or bankruptcy. Head to our website or Facebook or LinkedIn pages for more information and regular updates, including our Bi-Monthly Estate Planning Bulletin.

For more information on Oak Tree Retirement Villages Armidale, please call 1300 367 155 or visit

“ With seniors now more focused on their income in retirement than ever, we’re cer tain this is a step in the right direction.”

“Solar will of fer a significant cost saving and a more stable financial platform for our residents to depend upon and plan for their futures.” he said.

“ We also see that renewable energy has many other benefits – it reduces our carbon footprint, provides security against future price increases and adds market value to the villa and Village at large,” said Mr Bindon.

electricity bills putting more money back in residents’ hip pockets. Early data and modelling projects can see up to a 70% reduction in energy costs under the Oak Tree system. The Group sees this as one of its most exciting endeavours over the last 15 years in the industr y.

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roup, electricity billsDirector putting more money back Managing of The Oak Tree Group, electricity bills putting more money back For many retirees soaring energy in residents’ hip pockets. Early data and Mr Mark Bindon. in residents’ hip pockets. Early data and costs are a major concern but seniors modelling projects can see up to a 70% modelling projects can see up to a 70% belooking a “But energy costs no longer needs to be a to relocatereduction to Oak Tree in energy costs under the Oak reduction in energy costs under the Oak major concern in Retirement. Retirement Villages are set to save Tree system. The Group sees Tree this one of The Group sees this as one of s “Our new commitment to solar means its most exciting endeavours over the last its most exciting endeavours over the last as The Group commits to flick the selfyou can now think of our villages as self15 years 15 years in the industry. switch on solar and allocate 100% of in the industr y. sufficient solar farms. also see that renewable We also see that renewable “We energy has energy has the benefits back to“the residents. “We are one of the only Retirement Village illage many other benefits many other benefits – it reduces our – it reduces our operators passingprovides 100% of the benefits security ts carbon footprint, provides security against carbon footprint, against back to our residents; this means all future price increases and adds market future price increases and adds market energy produced is utilised within the Leading provider of Retirement Villages, valuelarge,” to the villa and Village at large,” said e value to the villa and Village at said village community. The Oak Tree Group, will provide on all of Mr Bindon. Mr Bindon. our villas a 4KW solar panel system. Oak Tree Retirement Villages have been “Solar will offer a significant cost saving en “Solar will of fer a significant cost saving tailor designed to provide comfortable, and a more stable financial comesa after e, The Group’s new initiative and more stable financial platform for platform for affordable homes where seniors can our residents to depend and plan for the 12.4% surge in electricity this ourcosts* residents to depend upon and plan upon for downsize to a smaller villa and enjoy a their futures.” he said. concern seniors a year and the growing their futures.” he said. maintenance free lifestyle. have raised over energy costs – notably, “With seniors now more focused on their “ With seniors now more focused on their its infrastructure, reliability and price, “One of the major benefits of downsizing income in retirement than ever, we’re zing than we’re as posted in a recent income survey by National in retirement is it reduces your costs of living – smallerever, certain this is a step in the right direction.” maller isrequire a step the right direction.” Seniors Australia.* cer tain this homes less up keepin and less For more information on Oak Tree energy to heat and cool in particular.”on said “The growing costs ofFor living are amore concern information Oak Tree ” said Retirement Villages Armidale, Mr Bindon. for the majority of Australians but possibly

please call 1300 367 155 or visit more so for seniors who have the restricted The Group is hoping the new solar please call 1300 367 155 or visit ability to increase income to fund it,” says program greatly reduces, if not eliminates, nates, * e -20180131- p 4y z4k .html

Oak Tree Retirement Villages 89 Martin Street, Armidale 217 Taylor Street, Armidale



i Bramm. What brought you to Black Mountain from the "big smoke" (Sydney)? My sister and brotherin-law own El Prado Alpaca Farm in Black Mountain. Once you stay at the BnB there, you are hooked. The trees, the sunsets, the stars at night, the quiet and so many beautiful animals … It stays with you. So, when they invited me in early 2018 to come live there and paint in the converted cool room, it was the chance of a lifetime. Up to then, I had made a makeshift studio in the corner of my bedroom in Sydney. It was time to have a real home (a little kit home) with a garden - a place for my dog Ollie to live out his final years. I was restricted in Sydney, working as teacher just to pay bills and finance my other creative work. I needed some room to breathe and the clarity of vision that country living brings. It also gave me the chance to work with animals (we also breed ducks) and help out on the farm, particularly during the drought. I am originally from this area. In fact; I was born not too far from here, in the small town of Emmaville. How do you feel living a rural lifestyle has changed you both as a person, and as an artist? It is so easy to get caught up in “city energy”. Living here has been the greatest 50 New England focus.

Artist Bramm Lindentree creates what he feels and sees through both paintings and music. Bramm’s latest exhibition, EMERGENT, can be viewed at the Armidale Gallery from March 23rd. Inspired by his surroundings at Black Mountain, soul and folk music, nature and his personal journey through life, Bramm’s art is layered and tactile … More often than not, I USE teacher one could have and design. MY HANDS AND AN - nature always is. When My journey as a ARRAY OF OBJECTS you are working to visual and performance TO PAINT WITH, SO survive, there is often little artist really began IT’S A CHANCE TO room for creative thought. in the early ‘90s in BE AS CREATIVE AS Here, I mirror what I see. Sydney. Most of my I WANT. The only thing I’m I am not so concerned work took place fastidious about is cleaning my about time. Because I’m in bare galleries. I brushes after I’m finished. more relaxed and happy wrote, designed and (being so close to my performed in many sister and the natural shows during this world) I’m able to explore, period, transforming experiment and expand as a person and an each space into whatever was needed. Of artist to discover my own style. course, this was done on “the smell of an oily Describe your new studio space ... rag”. My studio space is the old cool room. It I have also written, designed, produced and is filled with an eclectic mix of objects that I performed 10 original songs and video clips. love - mostly stuff from the ‘50s and favourite When you’re an independent artist and have CDs. From where I sit, I can see animals a very limited budget, you have no choice but grazing up on the hills. to do everything. In one of my songs, RAVENS I am by no means a neat artist. More EYE, I used 20 metres of recycled black plastic often than not, I use my hands and an array to create an Alice in Wonderland type tunnel. of objects to paint with, so it’s a chance to I listen to many forms of music, from folk be as creative as I want. The only thing I’m to soul, but I really love the pure lyricism of fastidious about is cleaning my brushes after George Michael. In fact, I’m learning one of I’m finished. My two dogs are often sleeping his songs right now. on the mat in the corner. You're presenting an exhibition called You're also a musician. What/who EMERGENT at the Armidale Gallery from would you say are your biggest musical March 23rd. What inspired this body of influences, and where did the artistic work? journey begin for you? I call my latest exhibition EMERGENT, I have always been a creative person. My because that's what I feel I am doing friends are amused by my need to constantly emerging as a visual artist, finding the forms change things around in the house. I am lucky to express myself and the joy of discovering to have been born with a keen eye for colour more of what I can do.

I suppose my work can best be described as Abstract Expressionism. I create layers, and then I strip away what is not needed. I actively encourage everyone to touch the work and look for their own way through it. You're known for finding and re-using items in your work - your previous exhibition, RAINBOW RECYCLE, made use of plastic shopping bags. What items have you sourced/re-used (if any) in EMERGENT? In my last exhibition, RAINBOW RECYCLE, I used all recycled products, including plastic shopping bags. In this one, I have sourced some of the paint leftover from other projects and canvas from second hand shops. Why spend large amounts of money on something, when it’s right there in front of you for under $5! Will we have the opportunity to meet you at the opening of EMERGENT? I really look forward to meeting and chatting with lots of folk at the opening, which happens at 6pm on Saturday 23rd March at Armidale Art Gallery. There will be also be lots of other work on show by other artists, so we look forward to sharing the time with you. The exhibition runs from 23rd March to 23rd April. Where can we hear more of your music? If you want to hear some Bramm music, just go to BrentPurdyArts Thanks Bramm. Interview: Jo Robinson.

Gem Craft show.

New England Lapidary and Fossicking Club

Annual and


hen and where will the 28th Annual Gem and Craft Show be held? It will be held over two great days - Saturday, March 16th from 9am - 5pm and Sunday, March 17th from 9am - 3pm at Armidale Showground. Entry to the Gem and Craft Show is FREE. Vendors will be situated both inside and around the Trade Pavilion. Entry is via Dumaresq and Kennedy Streets. Wheelchair access is available, and stall holders are most welcome to attend. What can you see and do there? There will be a spectacular array of gems, opals, fossils, rocks, crystals, jewellery, crafts, gifts, books, lapidary equipment and supplies on sale. Something for everyone! A qualified jewellery valuer will be on site to appraise your items; for a small fee you can have them professionally valued. Lots of fun for the kids too, with a treasure hunt and mini fossicking at the Gem Wash Stall, where you can fossick, find and keep gems such as sapphire, zircon, topaz and many others. Three great prizes will be raffled - 1st prize: locally cut 7 ct topaz with a spider faceted on the bottom. 2nd prize: $300 handmade Steelwood jewellery box. 3rd prize: The Crystal Bible Book.


A B.B.Q breakfast/ lunch, morning/ afternoon teas and refreshments will be available over the weekend. Who hosts this event? New England Lapidary and Fossicking Club Inc. (N.E.L.F.C) has hosted an Annual Gem and Craft Show at a variety of locations in Armidale for the last 28 years. The club currently has around 50 members, including several families and junior members. The executive works tirelessly year round to promote and foster fossicking and the art of Lapidary throughout the New England region. We also participate in many local events, including the Uralla Show and the Thunderbolt Festival. Tell us how this event has grown over the years? In 1991 a small number of traders attended the inaugural Gem and Craft Show at Legacy House. There was no provision for outside traders at this location. In the mid 1990s we moved to C.W.A. Hall, where there were six - eight stalls inside and only

three outside traders. The event has been slowly growing since, relocating to Armidale Showground in 2009. This year we have 20 trader bookings in the hall and over 35 outside traders. 2019 is shaping up to be the biggest and best Annual Gem and Craft Show to date. Does N.E.L.F.C support any local charities? Yes. Each year we have supported local charities by donating the entire proceeds of our welcome BBQ for our traders at the Gem and Craft Show to groups who do wonderful work in our local community; the Armidale and the Uralla branches of Can Assist and Diabetes Australia. This year all proceeds from our welcoming BBQ will go to the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter Service. Would you like to thank any sponsors? N.E.L.F.C would like to thank June’s Jewellery & Gems of Armidale, Ray Devlin of Ray’s Creative Woodwork and Michael Tasik of Uralla for their ongoing support of our event. How can people have a stall at the Gem and Craft Show or join your club? Stall sites are filling fast, but enquiries in regard to participating at the Annual Gem and Craft Show or joining New England Lapidary and Fossicking Club Inc. can be directed to Club Event Co-ordinator, John Hogbin on 6772 1001, or email

New England focus. 51




in the

Brad King the



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ell us a little about yourself. I’m originally from Newcastle. I moved here when I was eight, so I’m nearly a local! I love living in the New England with my beautiful wife and children. Sunny and I own Armidale Pet Store on the corner of Marsh and Beardy Streets.

or a spot of lunch? My wife (laughs), Sunny always packs us a lunch every day, but on the odd occasion that we want to grab something quickly we’ll head to Piknic, just a few shops up from us, which is super convenient and has some great food. Otherwise, for sure Ten Koo in the main part of the Beardy Street Mall; how could you not?

How long have you worked in the Mall? We are coming up to our fourth year working in the Mall this year. I enjoy our placement here, as there are many people walking through the Mall. Also, it’s great to have a good flow of traffic; we really couldn’t ask for a better position.

So when you’re not running the shop, what would we find you doing? Saturday afternoons in the summer, you’d find me playing cricket with the Hillgrove Cricket Club. Otherwise, we’d normally be at home “trying” to chill out. The shop keeps us pretty busy most days, as there are always animals to be fed here.

Where is your go to place for a quick bite



Earl Grey, the world’s most popular flavoured tea!

A Chinese Mandarin tea master blended the first Earl Grey tea as a gift for Charles Grey, the 2nd Earl of Grey and Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1830 to 1834.


arl Grey tea, believe it or not, is not its own category of tea. It falls into the category of flavoured teas. Flavoured teas include any type of tea - white, green, oolong, black that has been scented or flavoured with fruit, flowers, spices, oils, extracts, and natural or artificial flavours. Earl Grey is one of the most recognised flavoured teas in the world. This quintessentially British tea is typically a black tea base flavoured with oil from the rind of bergamot orange, a citrus fruit with the appearance and flavour somewhere between an orange and a lemon, with a little grapefruit and lime thrown in. Type of bergamot used: Today’s cultivar of the bergamot orange is believed to be a hybrid of the bitter Seville orange native to the Mediterranean and a sweet lime/lemon native to Southeast Asia.


The flavour of natural bergamot can vary immensely, depending on where it was cultivated and how it was processed. Natural bergamot is often defined as a sharp and intensely citrus flavour. Calabria, in Southern Italy, is home to 80% of the commercially grown bergamot, followed by France and Turkey. Types of Earl Grey · The English are fans of flavoured teas and blended Chinese Lapsang Souchong black tea with Earl Grey for a smoky version. · Lady Gray is an Earl Grey blend that is said to be more subtle and more floral than a traditional Earl Grey, but most manufacturers marketing this blend have different approaches. · The French add their beloved lavender to Earl Grey for a distinctively Parisian version. · Earl Green is blended using green tea instead of black. Daily Ritual has eight styles of Earl Grey available.

Find out more about other quality blends at

52 New England focus.


month of the

Thinking Conveyancing W I T H


E M I LY S T E P H E N S O N ( L I C E N S E D C O N V E Y A N C E R )

Selling your

Property Selling your property can be quite daunting. It’s been your home, a place you’ve made and shared precious memories and invested a lot of hard work and money into.


e ntract hen ers y of up te da n

d nd ty itle e.

ot all home sales have to be arduous. Like most things in life preparation will be key and if you take your personal feelings out of the negotiations and inform yourself in terms of the requirements, the entire process can be less stressful and the results in regard to your optimal sale price may be achieved promptly. To aim for a smooth transaction on the sale of your property there are a few things to keep in mind throughout the process. There are two main ways of selling a residential property: by private treaty or auction. There are no fixed rules about which types of property would be more suited to an auction or private sale, but each offers different advantages for the seller. You should get professional advice and discuss these options with your Real Estate Agent. If you do engage an agent, a contract must be prepared prior to advertising the property. This is usually referred to as a Listing or Marketing Contract. Having a transparent Contract that correctly discloses and depicts the true state of your property can offer protection and clarity for all parties involved. Requirements provide that all sellers must include certain information in the Contract for Sale of Land and must make certain promises about the property they are selling. These obligations are described as the Vendor Disclosure Requirements. The most common documents that will be found in a Contract are: Local Council zoning certificate, a drainage diagram, a copy of the certificate of title and copies of any documents creating covenants, easements, rights of way and restrictions. The Contract will have the description of the property, the price, what is included in the sale, additional clauses and all the relevant searches and certificates required. Remember to inform your Licensed Conveyancer or Solicitor of any notices you may have received from any Government departments (e.g. Local Council, Heritage Listings, Electricity etc.), any recent building renovations

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new Newengland Englandfocus. focus. 55 51

or developments and any if there have been any disputes with your neighbors. You should also discuss whether to include an Identification Survey, Building Certificate and a Home Owners Warranty Insurance Certificate. Unless the Contract specifically notes otherwise, the property is sold ‘in the state it is found’. This also means that any ‘fixtures’ on the land are automatically included in the sale. This is important to consider in situations where a particular fixture of the house may have some significant meaning to you and you wish to keep the item. A fixture is anything that cannot be easily taken away from the property without causing damage. Sometimes you are able to exclude certain fixtures from a Contract but to avoid disputes this needs to be expressly noted in the Contract to have effect. Sometimes a purchaser will want to move into your property before settlement has occurred, especially if their previous property has already sold. The Contract has a clause governing this situation if you intend to agree to early occupation. In essence the purchaser will be required to pay you an occupation fee which runs until the completion date. The buyer must take out insurance and cannot make any structural changes to the property. As the risk ultimately lies with the vendor, you should never let a potential purchaser take early possession of your home without first obtaining professional advice from your Licensed Conveyancer or Solicitor. Alternatively, a solution to this situation may be to consider bringing the settlement date forward. If you do not already have a Will, Power of Attorney and/or Appointment of Enduring Guardianship, or wish to update your existing one, then this is an important and appropriate time to consider doing so. Engaging a Licensed Conveyancer or Solicitor will provide you with the advantage of receiving professional legal advice to assist in making your decision, keeping you informed and ensuring your property sale will take place without uncertainty or unnecessary delay. Talk to us. You’ll be inspired! New England focus. 53

with Clairvoyant Terri Hall Phone. 0424 818 343

March 2019





MAY 22 - JUNE 22


You are much stronger than you are giving yourself credit for. Get out of your head; too much time there has had negative impacts. Try thinking six compliments each day.Say out loud six times a day, “Other people’s thoughts are none of my business”. Become the answer to one fear each day. Rose Quartz initiates self reward.

Your main aim at present should be to find your inner calm. When you have peace of mind, your whole world feels harmonious. Your fears will no longer have a hold on you. Set some dates to conquer your fears by. Ruby shatters fears and connects us to passion for living.

You are currently breaking free from repetitive cycles. You may be feeling a little idle at present, but you are really getting ready for some good changes. Don’t get caught up in injustices; set some fresh goals and keep focused on the task at hand. Carnelian gives us motivation.





JUNE 23 - JULY 23


Instead of being tempted to run, use that restless energy productively. Set some new goals or intentions and be your beautiful free spirit again. You have worried about trivialities; it’s time to change these patterns. Turquoise is great for self-worth and focus.

Your course may have been diverted in the immediate past, but you are now aligning with coming back on track. Your thoughts may have been a bit scattered, but now clarity awaits. Acknowledge your beautiful heart by loving everything you do. Rose Quartz connects us to self-loving nurturing.

Avoid rushing into things because you’re feeling restless. Use your visualisation skills and look at yourself a few months ahead; this will keep you connected to your destiny. Some new goals would be a bonus. Ruby stimulates our love for projects and new adventures.







Put some of that restless energy into some goals or planning; it’s time for action, not staying idle. The feeling of contentment will only be experienced if all aspects of yourself (mind, body, heart, soul) are considered when goal setting. Selenite shatters negative energy and charges the aura with bright, positive energy.

You can anticipate finding a new burst of energy from discovering new inner strength. Acknowledge your past hurts and thank them for the new, more divine you, you have grown into. Amethyst connects us to our wise higher energies.

Yeah! It’s time to move ahead. You have been laying low energetically over the past few months. New opportunities are afoot; set some fresh goals or give your Guardians some intentions you have, so they in turn have something to work with. Citrine will empower your positive thoughts.




APRIL 21 - MAY 21



You need to know you deserve the best of things to come, otherwise you could easily self-sabotage. Look into your beliefs and find the one that stops you reaching your full potential. Write it down and burn or bury it. Turquoise helps our self-worth and self-esteem.

54 New England focus.

Know that you deserve great things. You’ve been taken advantage of in the past, so try to leave it there and learn from it. Look at the strength and determination you’ve gained and give yourself gratitude. Rose Quartz helps connect us to our self-love.

Try debating with your beliefs occasionally. It will be completely out of your comfort zone, but you will grow enormously. You are releasing things that do not serve your higher good any longer. Look at things differently; you are naturally blessed with intelligence, so avoid becoming narrow-minded. Blue Lace Agate is a powerful mind clearing crystal.

New England



The New England


Saturday 16 March

#nefest fb: @newenglandfestival fb: @arc2350 twitter: @arc2350 instagram: armidaleregionalcouncil


The New England Festival - PREVIOUSLY KNOWN AS THE ARMIDALE AUTUMN FESTIVAL - HAS UNDERGONE A NAME CHANGE to better embrace the whole region.

ince its launch 27 years between 4 and 6pm. There will also be ago, Armidale’s premier a Pipe Band Quintet Competition from event has been a highlight 2:30 to 4pm in the mall. The Australian of the local events calendar. Army Band Concert will be hosted at The former Autumn Festival Armidale Servies Club from 6:30pm, Committee’s decision to with tickets now available for purchase change the name was an opportunity at the club. All proceeds to local to reinvigorate the event and build a farmers drought relief. strong portfolio of events around the Float applications are now open and festival from March through to May are available on the Council website. that showcases the beauty of autumn The theme for this year’s grand parade in the New is International England region Heritage of New and drives an England. Local increase in visitors. businesses, Preparations organisations Leveraging our cool for the festival are and schools are climate and vibrant well underway, encouraged to autumn displays are with community enter the parade a tourism marketer’s favourite elements and decorate floats dream and has the potential to of the longin the chosen rival other well known autumn running event theme. The grand display regions, like Bright in being retained, parade this year Victoria and Orange in NSW. including will have a slightly breakfast with the different route, band, Campus to and participants City Canter, the and spectators are grand parade and encouraged to pipe band performances on Saturday keep an eye on Council’s website for 16th March. further details. The focal point of afternoon activities Armidale Regional Council Mayor will now be based in the Armidale Cr. Simon Murray said the New England Mall, with live and local entertainment, High Country is known across Australia food stalls and cultural performances for its vibrant autumn display. by UNE International Hub’s Culturefest “The move by the committee to

change the name and embrace the New England region sets a wonderful platform from which visitors and the community can experience the full transition of autumn and explore the numerous events that are held during the busy March and April events season,” Cr. Murray said. “Autumn is a special time of the year in the New England. Leveraging our cool climate and vibrant autumn displays are a tourism marketer’s dream and has the potential to rival other well known autumn display regions, like Bright in Victoria and Orange in NSW. We really do have a hidden gem.” Autumn in the Armidale region will be further celebrated with a new event, the Colour New England Street Arts Festival on Saturday 6th April. Council and the NSW Government are supporting this community driven initiative to give local artists centre stage - including visual artists, musicians, theatrical performers and artisans. “Our region has a wealth of artistic talent that will be brought together by this new festival, to bid a fitting and fond farewell to the longer, warmer days,” Cr Murray said. Details and updates for the two festivals and many other upcoming events are available on Council’s website and social media channels.

• 7am Breakfast with the Armidale City Band (Civic Park) • 11am Massed pipe bands in the Mall • 12.30pm Grand parade • 2pm Quintet Competition at the Mall Stage • 4pm Massed pipe bands and Burns Highland Dancers in the Mall • 4pm Culture Vibes and international food vendors • 6.30pm Australian Army Band Concert for Drought Aid at Armidale Servies Club

The combined New England Festival Amusement Operators

Noble’s Sales and Parts.

New England focus. 55

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