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Feature Story David Golledge

October 2012 // Issue 65

e r will headlin Boy and Bea rter Summer Sta the first ever n Tamworth o in l a v ti s e F Music 4. November 2

S U SA N N E JA M E S Susanne is Director at the New England Conservatorium of Music, which brings music education and performance to the region.

MOREE PLAINS Known as Australia’s Artesion Spa Capital, the area is also rich in culture, heritage and agriculture. With lots to explore, you’ll be amply rewarded.

DUEAN HOWLETT This long-serving English teacher looks back on her rewarding career and has some interesting insights into the changes she’s witnessed in the education system.

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editor's note.


from the


Welcome to the October edition of New England FOCUS. INSIDE THIS ISSUE Hello readers. Don’t you just love springtime? This transition between winter and summer is divine. Although the weather has improved, we are experiencing some very strong winds, and The Bureau Of Meteorology would like me to remind you all that this time of the year in the New England is often a high fire danger season. Please take care and now that the sun is shining, get outdoors and check around your property for any fire hazards. After all, it is ‘spring clean’ time.


INSIDE THIS ISSUE Tamworth is fast becoming the mecca for entertainment, adding yet another huge festival to their calendar. This time, it’s for the young popular music fans. It’s called Summer Starter Fest and is headlined by popular band Boy and Bear. The lead

contacts. Looking to advertise in Focus? Contact us for more information. ADDRESS: 5/164 Beardy Street, Armidale PHONE: 02 6771 5551 FAX: 02 6772 5551 WEB: FACEBOOK: TV:

singer chats with us to explain when and where this huge festival will take place, and we ask him why, with 5 Arias under their belt, Boy and Bear still choose to tour regional Australia, when they could be playing anywhere around the world. We also interview Amy McGregor from the Red Cross Blood Bank, who foresees a shortage of blood and plasma supplies coming up. She appeals to locals for some donations. The doctors and staff at Rusden Street Medical Practice surprise retiring long term staff member Jean Brennan with a dedication page, and science teacher Regina Menz drops us a line about her career and in particular, plans for Science Week 2012. Susanne James, NECOM’s Director, stops by for a chat to tell us “Armidale is the perfect solution to the insanely hectic lifestyle of Sydney”.

Damian and Rebecca Wood are gearing up for their second big cycle from Sydney to Armidale, all in memory of their beautiful daughter, Tessa, who passed away with leukaemia at only 19 months of age. I, too, lost someone very dear to leukaemia, so I appeal to everyone to get behind Damian and Rebecca’s cause. Well as you can see, I am quickly running out of room, and I have only scratched the surface of this month’s content. I hope you all enjoy reading FOCUS as much as we enjoy preparing it for you. FINAL WORD “The human spirit is stronger than anything that can happen to it.” ~ C.C. Scott.

Sue Dee.







ART DIRECTOR: Jay Beaumont

ACCOUNT MANAGER: Louise Beaumont




SUB EDITORS: Jo Atkins / Reg Brookhouse /


Comments and opinions of our contributors do not necessarily reflect the opinion or view of the Publishers or Editor. 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 dates, times, prices and any other material including advice with individual businesses and industry professionals. New England Focus is produced and published by Creative House Publications Pty Ltd ABN: 62128786005. Material in New England Focus is Copyright © Creative House Publications Pty Ltd 2012 and may not be reproduced whole or in part, in any form, without permission of the Publisher. All rights reserved.

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inside this

Issue 65 - October 2012


David Golledge David Golledge shares the vision beind Harleys for Humanity (H4H), with the organisation set to hold its amazing annual Turkey Run from 26 - 28 October.

Regina Menz


Regina Menz has been the science teacher at O’Connor for almost ten years, and her passion for the subject is very obvious in this interview. She explains why Science Week is particularly exciting for both herself and her students.

17. lifecyclists In 2010, Armidale’s Damian and Rebecca Wood organised a mountain bike ride from Sydney to Armidale, under the banner of ‘ Lifecyclists’, to raise money for the Sydney Children’s Hospital and as a memorial to their late daughter, Tessa.

usual suspects.


18. what’s on for October 27. eat featuring local restaurants 30. star guide with Terri

No matter where you are in the world, read Focus for free online every month h@ follow us on w

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Boy and Bear will headline the first ever Summer Starter Music Festival in Tamworth on November 24. Lead singer and guitarist Tim explains why his band still chooses to play in regional Australia, as having 5 ARIAs under their belt, they could be playing anywhere in the world.


t's been a whirlwind three years work with. I'd worked with a lot of wan*ers for you guys, hey … growing up ... like my way or the highway, Yeah, yeah it has been – it’s been and all of a sudden I was working with people pretty wild! who were not only really talented, but also Just for some background info, really great people and really respectful. So, where does the name Boy & Bear come I was like I didn't really care where this goes from? – it’s just such a great environment to work Well, unfortunately we've spent 3 years in. For a musician, the pinnacle is to be able explaining it – and it's not a pretty story! Ha ha to be a creative as you can, and then one day ... it’s not grubby or anything; it’s just that we someone to notice it and maybe give you really needed a name and … well ... a show – and we were fortunate we used a band name generator enough to run that gauntlet. on the internet! Tell us a little about life So how did you five get on the road. The thing I really together? We're fortunate love about Boy Three of us went to enough in Australia ual & Bear is that msutof our uni together. We were to have a really great respect in term and the , on si all playing in different vi crew, so on the road creative r us is fo rt pa ite ur bands supporting each vo we'll get to a city and fa te new to be able to crea other, and my brother, the crew will go down em songs and play th who's the keyboard and start getting the live for people.” player, played in my band set ready … while we and I was the singer and get to be lazy (laughs)! guitarist and Jake, who's our So we'll go out and get bass player, had played in a band to see a little bit of the city. We with one of our managers and he'd gone get down to sound check at about 3pm to uni with Dave, Killian and myself … which in the afternoon and make sure everything is sounds a bit convoluted, but in some weird, going right and work on all the vocals. miraculous way, we morphed into one band in From there, the two support bands usually the end. roll in; they'll be on the sound check too, then We came in to play in Dave's solo project but we do the show, and we have a little bit of an once we started writing together, Dave was afters (party) ... but we're not a big party band, like: "This is a band; it’s not a solo project". and we're usually back in the hotel within an And that was when we started writing the EP. hour and a half of finishing the show. Once you started playing live gigs and Then we get underway to the next place. jamming together, at what point did you We're getting old, we're not very Rock and Roll realise you might be onto something big? at all (laughs)! It was a really great environment for me to You could play anywhere: why regional

Australia? Last year went really well for us, quite unexpectedly and our idea was that normally when this happens, bands head straight overseas and tend to forget Australia and the Australian regional markets. For us, while overseas is a priority, our biggest priority is Australia and connecting regionally in Australia, and that is something we have wanted to do for some time. We have kept the ticket price low, ‘cause you know, when we were at uni and we were those kids, if we wanted to go see a show and the band had got a little bit too big for their boots and were jacking up the price, then you couldn't really afford it. So we just tried to make a tour so that anyone who wants to come can come. Hopefully even for those who are a bit far from capital cities, they can still come and have a beer and enjoy the night out. You picked up 5 ARIA awards last year – a great nod from the marketplace. How has it propelled you forward? For us, it was unexpected, really unexpected, and we had already been planning the next record. The thing I really love about Boy & Bear is that mutual respect in terms of our creative vision, and the favourite part for us is to be able to create new songs and play them live for people, so we've been doing that. The ARIAs were really lovely and it’s great to be recognised by people; I think that that is something a lot of musicians deserve, but don't always receive. I am not sure we deserved it, but we were very humbled by the fact that we were recognised. I don't think you can rest on that, and we are onto the next record now and writing that at the moment.

And that's why (on the tour) we'll start to play some new songs live and see how the audiences respond to them. Thanks Tim; see you at the Summer Starter Music Fest. About the Summer Starter Music Festival. The breakthrough festival will feature APRA Song of the Year winners, Boy and Bear, two time ARIA Award winner Josh Pyke, ARIA nominees, Bluejuice and great Aussie favourites, Stonefield and Loon Lake. The Summer Starter Music Festival will kick off festival season, giving fans a unique opportunity to enjoy an up close and personal experience with some of their favourite artists. Festival goers can expect a casual, relaxed experience and when the sun set over Tamworth, the temperature is set to rise, as the star studded lineup unfolds. In addition, the Summer Starter Music Festival will host the first ‘Harvest an Artist’ competition, where two talented local artists will be chosen to perform on the day. Event organiser Sam Scott says, “This is a fantastic opportunity for a regional centre to develop an identity as host of a range of different musicians and music styles”.

the plug! November 24 Rugby Park on Marius Street. Tickets on sale through This is strictly an over 18s event. For further information, please visit

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Rene Rafferty, Uralla Branch Manager

Community Banking New England Mutual has a long history with Uralla, having served the local community for over 40 years.

Thunderbolt’s Festival

During this time, many local businesses have discovered a different way of banking. The ‘community banking’ solution that New England Mutual offers is a model that fits Being able to well in Uralla, as almost make locally all businesses in town are decisions d se ba independently owned and is a key aspect to r operated. success of ou

“ the

Without the support of the branch.” town, these businesses would not run and as a memberowned financial institution, New England Mutual is no exception. Uralla Branch Manager, Renee Rafferty, explains: “Being member owned, we are effectively owned by the local Uralla community, and we put the needs of our members and their community first. Being able to make locally based decisions is a key aspect to the success of our branch. We are able to communicate decisions to members in a quick and efficient

manner. Our locally based commercial lending team can also visit members or prospective members at their place of business; they make it so easy for you to review your banking needs.”

New England Mutual offers a flexible banking alternative and extended trading hours. “Our members really appreciate being able to do their banking on Saturday mornings, without having to travel out of town,” explains Renee. If you would like to speak to Renee about your banking needs, simply call 6776 6460 or visit 50 Bridge Street Uralla today.

Our friendly, local staff are ready to help your business thrive. Experience community banking at its best today. 132 067

New England Mutual is a trading name of Community Mutual Ltd. ABN 21 087 650 360 : AFSL 241167

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Now in its 14th year, this community event promises a jam packed program full of family entertainment – a free day out in Uralla. Thunderbolt’s Festival is held in conjunction with Harleys for Humanity (H4H) Turkey Run, on the last full weekend in October 26, 27 & 28 in the beautiful sprawling gardens of Alma Park. A feast of activities: no gate fees; all activities are FREE; markets; street parade; rock climb wall; horizontal bungee; Battle of the Bands; jumping castle; circus challenge dome; billycart derby; Fleet Helicopter joyflights – price TBA; and lots more! The inaugural Thunderbolt Bull Ride Classic: a phenomenal 3 hour demonstration of cowboy grit. Uralla’s Top Pub has a great area out the back; bulls and riders will put on a show. Local cowboy hero and current Australian bull ride

champion Duncan Elks, along with former Australian rookie bareback champion turned rodeo announcer Adam Hone are on the rodeo committee, to ensure it will be a top event. It is a limited ticket event; big prize money should bring top riders from near and far. Thunderbolt’s Festival is made possible with the support of the Uralla Shire Council, Essential Energy, Jobs Australia, Uralla Bowling Club, New England Mutual, Matilda’s Service Station Uralla, Phoenix Foundry, Harleys for Humanity and many other sponsors. Thunderbolt’s Festival is a little unique, aimed specifically for the community and has grown to be a ‘must do’ family experience – attracting over 4,000 visitors annually. Accommodation with Tent City still available through Uralla Visitor Information Centre 6778 4496.



David Golledge shares the vision beind Harleys for Humanity (H4H), with the organisation set to hold its amazing annual Turkey Run from 26 - 28 October.


ow and why did you transit from being a Prison Officer in the Riot Squad to raising money on Harleys? I had been a fairly aggressive person in my younger days, and working in a specialist riot squad for the Corrective Services suited me at that time and period of my life. I worked with a bunch of guys who were very tough, very disciplined, and we knew how to train hard and play hard. But after about 8 years in the Corrective Services, I became disillusioned with where and what I had become, so I resigned. I struggled with life and eventually came to a decision that I needed to change my life. I needed to do something for someone else and the community. How has Harleys 4 Humanity evolved? I was driving home from work one afternoon, and this idea hit me like an epiphany. I had a Harley, and a few mates had Harleys, so why not do something like ride our bikes and raise funds for charity? The original Harleys for Helicopters was created in 2001. In 2010, Harleys for Helicopters changed to Harleys for Humanity into its own incorporated body, to raise funds for other charities as well. How much money have you raised to date, and who has benefited from these funds? I think to date we have raised around $700,000 in funds, which has mainly gone to the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service in the Hunter and New England areas ... Although, now we are our own incorporated body and can decide who we donate money to. In 2012 we are donating to the Westpac Rescue Helicopter in the Hunter and New England regions and McMaugh Gardens Hostel in Uralla. The hostel can do with some more money, and we are looking forward to helping them out. If there is one thing that chokes me up, it is people who need help, defenceless people and children. That is why I wear the tattoo on my back that says: “When Injustice Becomes Law, Resistance Becomes Duty”.

Tell us about your annual Turkey Run? The Turkey Run is a ride that celebrates a great mate who died. The ride leaves Newcastle on a Friday morning at 10am and gets into Uralla about 4.30pm in the afternoon. There is a lot of lead up work all year long, with heaps of raffle tickets sold, heaps of days on the road chasing sponsors, getting things right. Why is Uralla your destination choice? Uralla was the only choice. My mate, Sandy Philp, grew up there; it was his town. Sandy had been to Sturgis in America for the biggest bike rally in the world. I wanted to bring Sandy home to his little town and the best little bike rally in NSW. Uralla also had Scotty Cox, the best bike builder in the world. I was determined to make this event a success for Sandy and to celebrate the person I believe to be the best of the best, Scotty Cox. Scotty has been a huge supporter of the Turkey Run from day one. He has made or built the Top Bike trophy for our bike show every year. I was fortunate to win the inaugural Top Bike trophy. To bring Sandy’s memory home and to win that trophy .... well, life didn’t get much better for me at that time. What are the attendance numbers for the Turkey Run, and describe the atmosphere during the event? We have over 450 riders and pillion passengers come to Uralla for this event each year, and it just grows. You have some people decide not come for whatever reason, but more seem to want to come. I believe it is because there is no BS at this show – just good, honest people who want to have fun. The atmosphere is electric; you cannot imagine the buzz you get riding into Uralla at 4.30pm on the Friday afternoon, to be greeted by men, women and children waving their arms and yelling out from the outskirts of town right into the main street and down to the bowling club. It makes you teary, and the hair on the back of your neck stands up. I love it; it is what makes me do it year after year. This event puts approximately $300,000 into

Uralla over the Turkey Run weekend. It is the single biggest event that Uralla has in any one year. How can one support H4H? Anyone can support and be involved with H4H or the Turkey Run. You don’t have to ride a Harley; you can ride any style of bike. This group is about people and doing something for the community – to leave a legacy that you can be proud of. I want business to support this event; I want mums and dads to bring their kids to this event. I want to open up the town of Uralla so that people see this as a great destination ride or drive. When is your next big event? My next big event, mmmm ... it’s going to be a huge custom car, custom bike, street bike and mini truck show in the main street of Wallsend in Newcastle on 7 April 2013. We are just going to shut down the main street of Wallsend and do it. I will be working with the Wallsend Festival Committee to put on a real cracker of a show. I had been asked numerous times to do a show in Newcastle, but just couldn’t get the right place. Then it hit me after talking to Ray Bowles (my good mate) about it, and the idea hit us that Wallsend had so many characteristics like Uralla to hold an event, that it was a done deal. Already the sponsors are lining up to be involved in this event. Who could you have not done this without? In the beginning, in the early years, I could not have done this without Mike Hadfield; he was tremendous. I have received massive support from my 5 major sponsors, who have been there from day one. They are: Gregg Carson – Gregg Carson Design – a magician in graphic design. He has designed each and every shirt, logo, banner, cap, our website and anything that has H4H in it, on it, or around it. He coined the phrase: “We need to protect the brand, your brand, H4H”.

Greg Tapp Printing – prints our flyers, posters and business cards. Brad Want from Hi Vis at Carrington has been the man behind getting all our coloured banners and decals and poster holders and the like. Hi Vis are also just about to fully wrap our Transit Van in our logos and sponsors’ logos; that van will look hot! Fraser Motorcycles have been supporting us with merchandise and cash and bikes at reduced costs for raffle prizes, such as Harley Davidsons, since the beginning. Panthers World of Entertainment in Newcastle has been there from the beginning, donating thousands of dollars each year. The cheques just turn up at the right time. I really need to say thank you to Tom O’Connor the General Manager of Uralla Council; his support, along with Uralla Council’s, has been great. And Leanne Cooper and Bev Stubberfield from Thunderbolt’s Festival; they work very hard for us in their community. I need to say a huge thank you to the team of people behind me that make up H4H Inc – who make me look good all the time: Ray and Pauline Bowles, Helen and Paul Duggan, Matt Hall, Rick and Irene Balkema, Barry Golledge, Neil Reed, Tracey Wolter, John and Kathy Quinton, Graham and Sue Jones, Michael and Kerrie Kearney, Keryn Barnett, Lou Lewis, Dave Smith, Steve Feeley, Jeff and Gaye Lawrence; you can all take a bow. And last but not least is my wife, Leanne, who keeps me grounded when I get too ahead of myself with exciting ideas for fundraising. All of these people are the real workers. I get the good job talking to sponsors and organising, but these guys do the hard work; without them behind me, this group would not succeed. I guess all I can say is thank you with all of my heart to each and every person who attends the Turkey Run and makes it such a great event year after year. Thanks David.

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Susanne Susanne James started as Director of Armidale’s New England Conservatorium Of Music in October last year, after a 30 career in music education and arts management in Sydney. She told FOCUS that she and her husband, Malcolm, “just slipped into the life here so easily – Armidale is the perfect solution to the insanely hectic lifestyle of Sydney”.



hat does your position at NECOM involve? My role is incredibly varied and certainly keeps me on my toes. First and foremost, I oversee NECOM’s two campuses – Armidale and Inverell. As a regional non-tertiary conservatorium, we are really a combined music school and performing arts organisation, so my position is a bit like merging the roles of a school principal and a CEO of a small performing arts company. As the only full-time manager in the organisation, there is never a dull moment. I seem to constantly move between: curriculum, concert and program development; marketing and publicity; fundraising through grants, philanthropy and sponsorship; strategic and business planning with the NECOM Board; and liaising with local and state governments plus the Department of Education and Communities – they are all the fun bits. However, as with all not-for-profit arts organisations, ensuring the boat stays afloat financially is ongoing. We receive about 35% government and philanthropic funding, so that means we need to find 65% from other sources, mostly tuition fees. Even a 5% shortfall in either area can really effect programs, budgets, resources and staffing – that’s not the fun bit. The best part of my role is meeting people (I wish there was more time to do that) and creating programs, and the pinnacle is to hear NECOM students perform – our Choral Concert a few weeks back was absolutely breathtaking. That’s why NECOM exists, and that’s why I am here. I wouldn’t have it any other way. A brief history on NECOM and the role it has in our region? NECOM was established in mid-2003, 8 new england focus.

programs, and a Music thanks to the passionate commitment of d this hi year we established bli Therapy Program in Armidale, a STARZ Show so many community supporters and Board Choir in Inverell, and our next big step is to use members, who really believe in the value video-conferencing to take music into as many of music and education. In 2004, its rapid remote schools and communities in the New development started off with choral programs, England region as possible. school, teacher and ensemble workshops, and How many teachers do you employ at fundraising for instruments. A satellite campus NECOM, and what are their areas of in Inverell was started in 2007, and we now expertise? have programs in Armidale, Guyra, Inverell, NECOM has 6 permanent string Walcha and Warialda. and woodwind teachers and over Over the last 8 years, 10 casual tutors, conductors thousands of children, and accompanists. They schools, teachers and are brilliant performers community musicians ries has in their own right, have been involved This Concert Se will and we are incredibly in NECOM’s another goal thatomes. g outc bring long lastin towards lucky to have these programs, and we Proceeds will goneeded piano accomplished musicians now produce an buying a much- semble and and teachers here at estimated 22,000 en y for our empt studio.” ng ci en er NECOM. + hours of music nf co ovide Tell us about the tuition annually – Heritage Homestead that’s a lot of hours Concert Series? for the small population We will present 3 concerts of of this region, our small beautiful Chamber Music in private teaching staff and our even heritage homesteads this spring. Chamber smaller management staff. Music was written to be performed in intimate Our role is focused on providing the highest and personal spaces, and the stately sitting quality music education, performance training rooms of the 3 homesteads are ideal for this. and concerts (and everything in between) These venues are not open to the public, so to as many children, young people, teachers it’s a pretty special opportunity to visit their and adults across the New England region gardens in full springtime bloom and to have as possible. Our core programs include: early an exclusive look inside their homes. childhood classes; choral, instrumental and This Concert Series has another goal that ensemble tuition; school and curriculum will bring long lasting outcomes. Proceeds will workshops; professional development go towards buying a much-needed piano for programs; masterclasses; and special projects our empty ensemble and video-conferencing such as Closing the Gap for indigenous studio. Our community and video-conferencing students, New England Sings and Chamber music programs really need a piano to get Music in your Classroom that tours across the ahead, so everyone attending a Homestead region. We are constantly fine-tuning and developing Concert will know that their ticket is going

towards this worthwhile project. We will also launch ‘Friends of NECOM’ at our last concert, and I hope that many supporters will join up. Describe the 3 homesteads that are hosting concerts? There’s the 1840 Ohio pastoral homestead at Walcha (one of the oldest homes in the New England), the imposing 1908 mansion Chevy Chase designed by Mark Roberts (the architect of Armidale’s St Mary’s Cathedral), and the fabulous Great Hall of Petersons Winery Guesthouse, originally the 1911 Palmerston Homestead of the Dangar family. The generosity and support of the present owners who have opened up their private homes for our series is amazing. Have you invited any special guest musicians to play during the concert series? Absolutely! The charismatic and internationally-acclaimed composer Elena Kats-Chernin will be our very special guest artist – this is a coup for Armidale, and her concert should not be missed. And NECOM violinist Alex Hiew has invited her String Theory colleagues, Patrick Murphy, Cello Performance Fellow at the University of Qld, and pianist Brieley Cutting of The Australian Chamber Musicians, to perform some of the most divine French Chamber Music at Chevy Chase. How can our readers obtain tickets to the Homestead Concert Series? As the series is held in small venues, seating is limited, so early booking is advisable. Buy tickets at NECOM in Armidale (tel: 6773 6419), Dymocks in The Mall and at Frog Crossing at Walcha. Tickets $35 - $45 adults and $30 - $40 concession, with proceeds to the NECOM Piano Fund. Thanks Susanne.



TURNERS PH: 02 6771 3990







Amy McGregor is Armidale’s Red Cross Donor Centre Manager and works with a team of eight staff to provide the region with a safe, happy and positive donation experience. In this interview, Amy tells us why NOW is a good time to donate blood.



Armidale Red Cross Donor Centre


escribe a typical day on the job ... Our working day centres around our donors, who voluntarily and so generously give their time, as well as their blood and plasma, to meet the needs of Australia’s

health system. I start the day with a review of the state’s blood and plasma inventory levels, then review our appointments schedule to ensure this reflects what’s needed. If required, I work with our local community relations officer, Tania, to engage our media contacts and local donor groups in a bid to increase our appointments to meet collection needs. In addition to this, we have daily operational changes, so I review communications to ensure I can provide the team with any updates or training. Then there’s the mammoth task of completing the documentation and administration requirements for every facet of the Centre’s operation. Whilst the job is a continual challenge to align the right donor, who has the right blood type, into the right donation type, for the right recipient at the right time, it provides me with the chance to work with a dedicated group of locals, staff, volunteers and donors, to make a positive difference to the lives of everyday Australians. What is the history of Red Cross in Armidale? The Red Cross Blood Service has operated a collection centre in Armidale for almost 50 years. The Centre has been in various locations throughout the Armidale Hospital during this time, but is currently located off the Butler Street carpark, near the Hydrotherapy Pool. Why is NOW an important time to give blood? As we head into October, the Blood Service is preparing for reduced inventory levels, which need increasing to sufficiently meet patient and health system needs. All blood components have a short shelf life, so there is a constant need for blood supply. The Armidale Centre will need an additional 120 whole blood donations and 65 plasma donations during the coming month.

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Who would make a perfect blood donor? Anyone who is fit and healthy, aged between 16 to 70 years and weighs more than 45 kilograms is eligible to donate. Your blood type helps determine which type of donation is going to provide the maximum use of your blood. As you can imagine, the blood donation process needs to be conducted under strict and rigorous rules to ensure product, donor and recipient safety is maintained, so there is a thorough documentation and interview process to examine a donor’s medical history, identify any health concerns and assess eligibility against travel and lifestyle patterns – frustratingly, people’s generosity sometimes cannot be accepted due to these restrictions. Can you give us some examples of how donated blood saves lives? The majority of blood goes to treat people with cancer, as well as people who have suffered traumatic incidents, burns, or those undergoing surgery. Your plasma, the fluid component of blood, contains important proteins, nutrients and clotting factors which help prevent and stop bleeding. It’s the most versatile component of blood, making 17 lifesaving products to treat a volume of patients – the recipients of such generosity are almost endless. The Blood Service is also active in other areas of the health industry, providing vital services relating to bone marrow, organ and tissue donations, as well as tissue typing for transplants and blood transfusions. How much time would one need to put aside to donate? A blood donation takes just one hour, every 12 weeks. A plasma donation can be made as frequently as every 2 weeks; this process is a little longer, but provides the Blood Service with a far more versatile and needed product. The donation process involves completing a questionnaire to gain insight into your health and wellbeing, a confidential interview, the donation and then a refreshment. Do you have regular donors?

Armidale’s Donor Centre is very lucky to have the support of a significant number of dedicated blood and plasma donors. Bryan Johnston has been donating plasma and whole blood at the Armidale Centre for the last ten years; he recently made his 200th donation. Bryan explains his commitment simply, “Giving blood is something so easy, that takes little effort, but it can make such a big difference to someone’s life”. Whilst such milestone donors contribute remarkably to the health and welfare of so many Australians, even new, firsttime and infrequent donors can make a difference. Armidale’s Donor Centre is also supported by the Blood Service’s ClubRed program – where local businesses, schools and community groups gather people together and regularly donate blood. Armidale’s Community Relations Officer, Tania, coordinates this program and regularly presents at schools and local businesses to demystify and educate potential donors about the need for blood, general eligbility and donation expectations. What would you say to a person who is thinking about donating? Don’t just think about it, do it – you have the ability to save the lives of 3 Australians. One in three people will need blood or blood products in their lifetime, but only 1 in 30 will donate – which group will you be in? How does one book in? You can call the Australian Red Cross Blood Service on 13 14 95 to make an appointment. If you have any queries regarding your health, medication or any recent travel, we encourage you to call in at the Centre, or phone the above number and ask to speak with one of our medical staff. The Armidale Donor Centre is open Mondays and Tuesdays from noon to 8pm, and Thursdays and Fridays from 8am to 2pm. Thanks Amy.

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Menz. Regina Menz has been the science teacher at O’Connor for almost ten years, and her passion for the subject is very obvious in this interview. She explains why Science Week is particularly exciting for both herself and her students.


hen, where and why did you study to become a science teacher? From as early as I can remember, I always wanted to be a teacher, but it wasn’t until I attended high school that I discovered science. I was curious to find out how things work and why things happen. Science helped me seek the answers to my questions. I did look into other science related careers, such as pharmacy and science research, but I really wanted to be a teacher – so a science teacher is what I became. It was a great decision. I studied at Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga, doing a four year education degree specialising in science, in particular, chemistry and physics. I met my husband, Paul Frazier, while studying at Charles Sturt Uni. We married in 1993 and have three children: Kate and Tom, who attend O’Connor, and Sam, who is at St Mary’s Primary School. I have been lucky to teach in a variety of schools. I started teaching at Gundagai High School in 1990, and since then I have taught in Melbourne, Darwin and Wagga Wagga. I have taught in state, independent and Catholic schools. How long have you been teaching science at O’Connor; what’s a typical day at work? I have been teaching at O’Connor since 2003. We moved to Armidale in January 2003, and I worked as a casual teacher. I was offered a position in 2004, job-sharing with Katherine Harris. This was a perfect with a young family. I have been working full-time since 2007 and have been Science Coordinator since 2010. A typical day? Well, as a teacher, nothing is typical. Mostly I start with a meeting and then have 15 minutes with my pastoral group – a Year 8 group where we share what


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is happening around the school and help science. As well as all that, we had daily quizzes with issues and concerns raised, as well as for staff and students about science, where celebrating student successes. It is then straight great prizes were awarded. into teaching. Other extra activities that students at Currently, my focus is on preparing the O’Connor are involved in are The National Year 12 students for the HSC exams. I do love Youth Science Forum, PISCE Student having a junior science class, when we can Scholarship Program, Science Experience get in and do fun experiments. Last week, Camp at UNE, TAS Forensic Science Camp, it was modelling rock formation by making Science and Engineering Challenge, UNE honeycomb (lava!) and rocky road (sedimentary Science Investigation Awards, Royal Australian rocks). Lunchtime involves helping students in Chemical Institute (RACI) Titration Competition Science Help, where students can come and (which I run at UNE on behalf of RACI), Women get extra help with their science in Engineering Weekend, University of studies. After school, it can be Western Sydney Engineering Camp, more meetings or coaching Australian National Chemistry the O’Connor netball Competition, and many more. I was honoured team, or running We gratefully acknowledge a be to this year my own children to of the support that the Rotary t iri ‘Sp of t recipien ion’ at various events. After uc Club offers our students Ed ic ol th Ca cese the afternoon run to help meet the costs of Award for the Dio e of Armidale. Thesented around, I generally hit some of these camps and awards were pres the computer to plan opportunities. The Rotary ic during Cathol lessons and activities club provides funding to help ” k. ee w n io Educat and do some marking. students attend these exciting We hear that you opportunities. have some interesting Who from O’Connor is involved extracurricular activities? in the next Nobel Prize Presentation? We are very proud of the extra activities on We are extremely happy for one of our Year offer in science at O’Connor. Our biggest event 12 students, Emily Hull, who attended the is our Science Week Celebrations. We have National Youth Science Forum in Perth early been celebrating Science Week since 2004, and this year. Emily applied for the international every year it gets bigger. program associated with the NYSF and was This year, our students from Years 7 to selected as one of only two Australian students 11 were involved in running fun science to attend the Stockholm International Youth experiments at Armidale City Public School for Science Seminar (SIYSS). Year 3 – 6 students and at St Mary’s Primary As part of this program, Emily attends the School for Kindergarten to Year 6 students. Nobel Prize Award Ceremony at the Stockholm Some of the experiments we ran were making Concert Hall and has the opportunity to meet slime, a heart dissection, and lots of activities to with Nobel Laureates. With its links to the do with sound and light. Nobel Prizes, the SIYSS is considered the most We also had five scientists come and talk prestigious youth science event in the world. to our Year 10 – 12 students about careers in Emily also presents her own research project

at the SIYSS. Emily is currently working with Professor David Lamb from UNE on her project. She is researching and experimenting with optical fibres and their use as part of the NBN. We are very appreciative to Dave for his work with Emily. It is fantastic to be able to build strong relationships between schools and universities. Highlights of your teaching career? I have been lucky to have many highlights. Nothing beats the look when a student ‘gets it’, and I always look forward with anticipation to see how our students go in the HSC ... but really it is when ex students come back and thank you for your efforts and encouragement that is a real highlight. I was honoured this year to be a recipient of ‘Spirit of Catholic Education’ Award for the Diocese of Armidale. These awards were presented during Catholic Education week. The award I received was for outstanding achievement and contribution to Catholic Education for an experienced teacher. It was great to be rewarded for what I love doing – teaching. Why do you enjoy teaching at O’Connor? O’Connor is a great school. It offers such a broad range of subjects and extracurricular activities. The focus is on developing the whole student – academic, spiritual, cultural and sporting. I love the community of O’Connor; the students are always keen to be involved, and you only have to ask and students help out. The way the students respond to Science Week, teaching and encouraging the primary school students, is extremely rewarding. O’Connor has a fantastic staff who make it fun to come to work, and they are supportive of each other. My children, Kate and Tom, enjoy it, and Sam can’t wait to come to O’Connor next year! Thanks Regina.

on selected Intrepid tours

North America and South America

A word from Vicki Kembery.

Earlybird Airfares out now



London return with Singapore Airlines

from $1667*pp Book & pay by 30 November Pay $1 & receive 1 night stopover in Singapore

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China Adventure I thought over the next few months I’d give a few Travel Tips for different cities and destinations around the world that I have visited on my travels.


ften when you arrive in a new city, it can be a bit overwhelming, and a lot of time is lost just trying to work out what to do and where to go. And then, when you get home, a well-meaning friend will find out you’ve just been to their favourite city and ask, “Did you get to see ‌â€? or, “Did you visit ...â€? and when you say that you missed that, they’ll look at you as though your whole trip has been wasted. Which it hasn’t ... but it doesn’t make you feel all that good! I’m not saying the information I’m going to give you here is the be all and end all for each place – I’m sure I’ve still missed some ‘gems’ in various cities around the world, but it’s a starting place for you and might save you some time and energy when you get there. So, first up is a city reasonably close to home and a favourite of mine for a stopover en-route to the UK – Hong Kong. Of all the Asian cities I’ve been to, this one stands out because of all the sightseeing, the food and the shopping it has to offer and the fact it’s very easy to get around. Tip 1 When you arrive, get yourself an Octopus Card. This allows you travel on the MTR (Mass Transit Railway), light rail, trams including the Peak Tram, buses and Star Ferries. It’s pretty simple – buy the card at any MTR station and whenever you get on any of the above forms of transport, you wave the card over the Octopus Reader and jump on board. You decide how much you want to put on the card when you buy it, and you can check how much you have left on it when you use it. You can top it up and when it’s time to come home, you can return the card and get the unused balance refunded to you; or, since it lasts for 3 years, keep it for your next visit. Tip 2: As I said, getting around Hong Kong is pretty easy on the MTR, buses and ferries. But one of the best things you can do in Hong Kong is check-in for your international flight at the train station! Most of the international airlines (including Cathay and Qantas) have check-in facilities at Kowloon Station, meaning you can check in up to 90 minutes before your flight, your luggage is whisked away, you get your boarding

pass, jump on the train out to the airport (which takes about 25minutes) and then head straight through immigration. No airport queues! Tip 3: Take a local bus around Hong Kong Island to Stanley Market and check out the scenery. One of my favourite sights in the world is the Repulse Bay building on the way to Stanley Market, with the big hole straight through the middle of it – when the building was erected, the Feng Shui experts said it needed a large hole left in it, so the mountain dragons living up behind the building still have access to the bay (so they could drink from the ocean)! Tip 4: Take a Star Ferry to one of the fishing villages on one of the outer Hong Kong islands, such as Cheung Chau, which has no motorised transport and a great selection of seafood restaurants and cafÊs selling great meals for half the price you’d pay back in Kowloon! It takes about an hour each way. Tip 5: Hong Kong is full of markets – Stanley Market, Temple Street Night Markets and Ladies Market, to name a few of the shopping markets. But spend a day wandering through some of the more exotic market areas, such as the Flower Market, the Bird Garden Market/ Street and the Goldfish Market – you won’t be buying from them, but they are a fascinating insight into Hong Kong daily life. Tip 6: Use your Octopus Card and head out to Lantau Island to visit the Big Buddha and Po Lin monastery. The highlight of this excursion is the 5.7 km cable car, which takes you from the station to the village of Ngong Ping. The cable car ride takes about 25 minutes each way and passes over water, through hills and valleys and past the airport. If you’re really adventurous, you can pay extra and take the Crystal Cabin with the glass floor! Tip 7: If you still have a free day, take the ferry over to Macau and check out all the kitschy casinos and hotels in among the lovely Portuguese architecture. It’s an eye opener ‌ That’s just a few tips for your next trip to Hong Kong. Enjoy!

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Some offers are only available on specific departures and are subject to availability. Singapore Earlybird Deal - Travel between 1 Mar - 31 May or 1 Sept - 31 Oct 2013. Subject to availability at time of booking. Prices correct as at 15 Sept 2012. Essential Vietnam & China Adventure valid for sale 1 Nov - 31 Dec 2012. Valid for travel from 1 Nov 2012 - 31 Mar 2013. Seasonal surcharges apply over peak and holiday seasons. Offers are subject to availability and can change without notice due to fluctuations in charges & currency. For full Terms and Conditions on all advertised products see Vicki at Travel 195. Lic No. 2TA 07677

New summer range of TRAVEL GEAR in store now. Come in & do a deal with Neal ! Join our free Loyalty Programme. ramme. Receive 10%** off all recommended d retail prices.  neal@ad

118 Dangar Street Armidale Arm

(the bright green shop in Dang Dangar Street)

02 6772 2585 

new england focus 13


Video OF THE



Watch on your smartphone

VIDEO BY: Spoontastic Productions. ABOUT: This film is to help promote more support for our 2012 Premiers, The UNE Rugby Barbarians.

Image of the month. A magnificent photo of Ebor Falls. The falls were first protected in a recreation reserve in 1895. Photo by: Gerard Oude Avenhuis.

The theme is 'Be Barbaric; Become a Barbarian'. WATCH AT:


by Anne Corfe, Owner Whitebull Hotel

Taken a great photo of our local area? Like to see it published in FOCUS for the world to see? Just email

local dr p. with Robert Gasparre from Armidale Farmers’ Market


AT ’ S I N


Wright Robertson Highlander 2011 Pinot Noir

Named for the elevation at which the grapes are grown, the Wright Robertson Highlander Pinot Noir is one of the most popular New England region wines amongst the many local drops available at the Whitebull Hotel. Emerging in 2004, this wine has come to represent the quality prevalent in our region. Strawberry fruit and cinnamon take charge on the palate, working hand-in-hand with a subtle framework of tannins to provide a smooth, fruit-driven wine made to be enjoyed with food, friends and family.

AVAILABLE: Whitebull Hotel. COST: $30 per bottle or $8 per glass.

Rocket (Eruca sativa), also known as roquette or arugula, is an aromatic salad green which has a rich, peppery taste and a strong flavour for a leafy green. It is often mixed with other greens in a mesclun (a mixture of young leafy greens). ms best in spring to early ly ssummer. um mme mer. r. After Aftter that Aft thaat It is an easy plant to grow in the garden. It performs time, plant it under the shade of a tree (not dense shade), or under shadee op it 'bolting'. Too much ch cloth. It is not fussy, but likes plenty of water to stop drought and summer heat will cause the leaves to be smaller and moree 'peppery'. pecies to the more 'Wild Rocket' (Diplotaxis tenuifolia) is a different species common salad rocket. It has narrower leaves and a stronger flavour. It is also a lovely salad green and can be used in thee same way as salad rocket. After purchasing or picking rocket, rinse the leavess in aves cool water and shake off excess moisture. Wrap leaves in plastic, or put in a zip lock bag. Alternatively, putt the leaves in a jar of water, with just the cut ends submerged. Best if used within two days. king Rocket is great on pizzas, added just before the baking period ends, or immediately afterwards. I also like to use rocket in pesto, as an alternative to basil. It means that I can make pesto most of the year.



Opportunity and lifestyle, UNE has it all UNE offers a broad range of employment and career opportunities and a refreshing lifestyle attracting staff from around Australia and the world to Armidale in the beautiful New England Region of New South Wales. Staff enjoy a vibrant, cosmopolitan university city; fresh, clean air; wide open spaces; and best of all, time to enjoy it. While UNE has a long history and strong tradition of academic distinction, our outlook is dynamic and fresh. Our focus is on the future.

For further information about UNE and the positions we have available to develop and grow your career, visit: The Armidale Farmer's Market is on the first and third Sunday of every month in Curtis Park. For more information visit

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Equity principles underpin all UNE policies and procedures



AFTER teaching English across five decades, Mrs Duean Howlett from New England Girls’ School will retire at the end of the year. We speak with her about her career, how the teaching of English has changed and why single sex schooling is still relevant.

understand you were educated at MLC at Burwood, in Sydney. There must have been a teacher there who really inspired you, not just to learn, but to later become a teacher yourself? Believe it or not, I did not particularly enjoy my education from 5th class at MLC. I found the whole learning process there to be stultifying, restrictive and very traditional. It was very much the case of opening one’s text book at page so and so and answering questions. I never thought about being a teacher until I accepted a Teacher’s Scholarship and the accompanying bond. As a prac teacher, I taught my first class at Hornsby Girls’ High School – it was a Year 8 class, and the topic was a Medieval Village. After that first lesson, I was hooked on being the best possible teacher ever. Where did you start your teaching career? I started my teaching career at Raymond Terrace High School in a demountable on my own. I taught Form 6 [as it was called then] English and Modern History and Form 5 English and Modern History, with a Year 9 English class. My first year there taught me how to establish and maintain discipline and how to excite students to want to learn. What brought you to Armidale – and NEGS? I arrived in Armidale and NEGS in 1986, to take up the promotional appointment

of Head of English. My husband and I and our two children had many horses, dogs, cats and chooks. We wanted to raise our children and our menagerie in the country. How has the teaching of English changed over time, both in the class and the curriculum? Since I started teaching mostly just English, I have worked through four major syllabus and curriculum changes. I started teaching in the Wyndham System, where subjects were divided into categories of difficulty – namely First Level, Second Level and Third Level. Then the system changed to 3 Unit, 2 Unit and 2 Unit A levels. Then it changed to 2 Unit, 2 Unit General and Contemporary levels. In 1996 I was part of the consultation process for the new and still current syllabus that started in 2000. This is the Area of Study and elective Module syllabus that will be replaced by the National Curriculum in 2014. The highlight of the current syllabus for me is being the facilitator for Extension 2 English, where the students have to be creative, original and develop excellent research skills. I understand for many years you have also been a HSC marker of English. What does that involve? I started HSC Marking – 2 Unit Fiction – in the 1970s at the old Moore Park Showground. Since then, I have marked all sections and most levels of English. I have been a Senior Marker for eight years in Module B and C, and this has greatly


“ My daughther hroug went th NEGS and myt to a son also wenhool – single sex sc hing so it is sometlieve I strongly be in. ”

assisted my teaching. The aim of HSC Marking is to holistically assess what the student has written in 40 minutes. Markers have to reach and maintain a Centre Standard, and this does not include what the student did not include. It is a very different style of marking from the class room teacher, who has to be able to tell the student what has been omitted and what needs to be done to gain a better mark. Marking guidelines are set and bench marks scripts provide further assistance to the Marker. From this perspective, what things can students do to best prepare for their English exam? The best thing a student can do to prepare for the HSC English examination is to own the information and knowledge and to be able to set up and develop a thesis supported by detailed textual references and appropriate quotes. They need to do more than just summarise the content of the texts. Mind maps, tables and grids are all useful as well. You have taught in both the department and independent systems and co-ed and single sex. Why is single sex education relevant in 2012? I have taught at disadvantaged Sydney outer-western suburb high schools, as well as Barker College and Pymble Ladies’ College on Sydney’s north shore. Single

sex education for girls has proven to be an advantage, as it gives them greater confidence and often better abilities in the Maths and Sciences. Single sex education gives girls the chance to take control of and direct their learning. My daughter went through NEGS and my son also went to a single sex school – so it is something I strongly believe in. Boys do learn and behave differently from girls of a similar age. You have had several years as deputy principal of NEGS. What have been some of your other career highlights? During my 26 years at NEGS, I have been Head of English, Head of English and History for two years, Head of English and LOTE for one year, Head of English and Careers Adviser for two and Acting Deputy on many occasions, before becoming a full Deputy. As well, I have also been a Year Adviser to four different year groups. An early highlight of my career at NEGS was as producer of Oklahoma! with all Year 10 girls. And finally … what are your plans for retirement? When I hang up my mortar board, I want to learn new skills that are of a practical nature. I would also like to become involved in some sort of volunteer work and, of course, to travel. Thank you and best wishes, Duean. new england focus 15


< Damian and Rebecca with James, Roie and Tessa.

(l-r) John ‘Ziggy’ Hiscox, Rebecca Wood, Damian Wood and Jim Lea.

In 2010, Armidale’s Damian and Rebecca Wood organised a mountain bike ride from Sydney to Armidale, under the banner of ‘ Lifecyclists’, to raise money for the Sydney Children’s Hospital and as a memorial to their late daughter, Tessa.



essa spent nine months in the hospital receiving treatment for leukaemia in 2009, but died after developing a rare complication. She was just 19 months old. Lifecyclists are now gearing up for their second ride, leaving Sydney on September 29 and arriving in Armidale on October 5. The first Lifecyclists ride was in 2010. Was it successful? The 2010 Lifecyclists ride was an extraordinary experience for everyone involved. There was so much emotion, as the grief of losing Tessa was still quite raw. The response from family, friends and the community was incredible, surpassing all our expectations as far as support and fundraising goes. We raised over $50,000! On a personal note, it was a great sense of achievement to do something in honour of Tessa and to keep her memory alive. What is the plan for the ride this year? The plan for this year is to fully utilise the mountain bikes and get off the beaten track. Although we will be following the same basic route, we will be avoiding all major roads, taking dirt roads, trails and at one point, carrying the bikes 800 m across a beach! It is so much more enjoyable to get away from the traffic, and it adds an element of adventure to the ride. The basic route will be to travel north of Sydney, with stops at Toukley, Nelson Bay and Forster, through Taree, where two of the riders reside, then head up the mountain from Wingham to Nowendoc, then to Walcha via Brackendale, and through to Uralla and Armidale using back roads through Gostwyck and Invergowrie. All up, we should travel about 700 km in seven days. Rebecca, you are riding this year – what prompted you to get on the bike? To be honest, I didn't really consider myself a starter originally. I have been riding my bike regularly since 2009 as a form of stress relief, and Dame suggested I have a go at riding this time round. With his help, I have upped my training to ensure I am fit enough to keep up with the boys.

16 new england focus.

Raising money for the Sydney Children’s Hospital As I am a bit of a reluctant trainer, it hasn't thew, and our two children, James and Roie. been easy! Last time I was part of the support My brother, Anthony, will also be joining us as crew, and that was a lot of fun. I am really lookofficial tour photographer. ing forward to travelling the route again, on my How has the support been so far for Lifecybike. clists 2012? There are also a number of other new cyWe’ve had wonderful support from the clists joining you for this year's ride. Tell us Armidale business community. We’ve received about them and how they got involved? cash donations to help us stage the ride, as Jim Lea and Ziggy Hiscox are two locals that well as a wide variety of goods to be auctioned will be joining us for the ride. Jim has been a and raffled. Notable mentions must go to New family friend for many years, and we really enEngland Mutual, The Professionals, Ducat's joyed his company on the Tour de Rocks earlier Earthmoving and Bunnings. this year, and we knew he would be a great The full list of sponsors is displayed both on addition to the team. our website and Facebook page. We are also Ziggy has only taken up cycling in the last 12 fortunate to be well supported by a number months but has embraced it with of Quota clubs from various parts great enthusiasm. One of his of Northern NSW – the catalyst greatest assets is his outgofor which was Damian being All money ing personality, which will guest speaker at the District donated goes tos be invaluable out on the 24 Conference, which was ren’ the Sydney ChildSupport road. hosted by the Walcha Hospital Familysists We knew we had the club in June. Again, their as Fund, which ith w es ili m fa y right guys when both donations are noted on tr coun they are expenses when ceiving of them jumped at the our website and Facebook at the hospital re ent for chance to be part of page. lifesaving treatm Lifecyclists 2012, and we How is fundraising protheir children.” know that their family and gressing? How do people friends will get right behind make a contribution? them in support. We have really diversified the Bec's cousin, Paul Mackie, and his way we raise funds for this year’s ride. The friend, Walter, who are both from Taree, will also easiest way for people to contribute is through be coming along, as well as original Lifecyclists our website: by clicking on Rolfe and Rob Kolbe from Sydney. the ‘donate now’ tab. We also have an account What about your support crew? Who are at Community Mutual. they, and what goes on behind the scenes? We have been doing quite a lot of commuWe are so lucky to have such capable supnity based fundraising, such as the Friday night port staff in John Galletly and my brother, Greg raffles at the Grand Hotel, a BBQ at Bunnings Wood. Neither of them require any introduction, and a stall at the monthly markets. as they are very well known local identities. They Fundraising is going well and the commuwill set up camp for us every evening, as well as nity has been very generous so far, but we are looking after all the catering for the ride, which still hoping for more people to support a very is no mean feat, but these guys make it look worthy cause. All money donated goes to the easy. They also provide two strong personalities Sydney Children’s Hospital Family Support Fund, into the mix, which adds to the atmosphere of which assists country families with expenses the ride. when they are at the hospital receiving lifesaving They are ably backed up by Greg’s son, Mattreatment for their children.

Is there any way we can follow the ride's progress? Rolfe will publish a daily blog on our website, which will include photos and anecdotes from each day's journey. So you can log on to the site now for an overview of this year's ride and associated events. There will also be regular Facebook updates throughout the ride. So what is planned for the Lifecyclists arrival in Armidale? We will be arriving at the Armidale Bowling Club at about 4.30pm on Friday, October 5, where hopefully we will have a gathering of friends and family there to greet us, with the welcome function getting underway at 6pm. The feature of the evening will be a charity auction that is being conducted by Michael Clark. We’ve had some great items donated for the auction, like a Sydney Swans guernsey signed by Brett Kirk, Adam Goodes and the rest of the 2010 team, a pink charity St George guernsey with certificate of authenticity, a Brisbane Broncos strip and the BBQ used by this year's Masterchef winner, Andy Allen, at the recent Bunnings Gala Day, and much more. Our son, James, will be having his head shaved in memory of his sister, with local hairdresser Helen Simpson doing the honours. Entertainment will be provided by local bands Tex Message, and duo Dan and Josh. Bar snacks and meals can be ordered from the Club Bistro. Entry is by donation, and kids are very welcome. We are expecting a good crowd. What are the future plans for Lifecyclists? We hope to stage the ride every two years. It is a wonderful way for us to keep Tessa's memory alive. While we would have our daughter back in a heartbeat, we know that is not possible. So we take the gift that she has given us, which is to help other families who find themselves in a situation such as ours. Lifecyclists will continue to evolve, and perhaps in future years it will be the whole family on their bikes in memory of our daughter and sister. Thanks Damian and Rebecca.

Newling Gardens provides elegant, spacious and low maintenance homes with well appointed kitchens including Miele cookware appliances and stone bench tops. A highlight feature is the northerly sunroom overlooking beau fully maintained gardens which oďŹ&#x20AC;er a lot of light and a good ven la on flow.

Care has been taken to ensure privacy is maintained across all homes. Newling Gardens residents have the choice to be as private or as social as they would like. If you are in the mood for a get together, we have a number of recrea onal ac vi es planned or simply enjoy the serenity of the professionally

landscaped gardens. We have a func on room, indoor heated swimming pool and gym also for your enjoyment. Situated only minutes walk away from the CBD allowing residents to stroll into town to take pleasure and par cipate in everything beau ful Armidale has to oďŹ&#x20AC;er.

Stage 1 - Sold Out, Stage 2 - Only 2 Homes left Stage 3 - now available

new england focus 17


2012 A R M I DA L E R E L AY FOR L I F E – 2 7 & 28 O C TOB E R 2012 – A R M I DA L E S HOWG ROU N D.


ho can participate? Everyone! There are no restrictions when it comes to Relay. It's about getting involved, regardless of your motivation and being part of something great. Usually teams are made up of 10 to 15 people and headed up by a team captain. You don't have to be over 18 to get involved and you don't have to be fit – anyone can do it! Relay is a family friendly event and will have entertainment for all ages! What is Celebrate Remember Fight Back!?

Celebrate – local survivors and carers are invited to walk the first lap of the track, while the rest of us cheer them on. Remember – the Candlelight Ceremony of HOPE is held at dusk to Remember those lost to cancer. Candles are placed in paper bags lovingly inscribed with messages from family and friends. These candles are placed around the track, to encourage us all to remember those who lost the fight and be inspired to keep going.

Fight Back! – a special Fight Back Ceremony is held, where participants are invited to make a personal pledge on how they will make a change to fight cancer.

the plug! Register your team, or join another team today and help fight back against cancer! au/2012/armidale_2012

Fundraiser for Armidale Hospital Kids' Ward e would be absolutely delighted to have all of you at the grand opening of Fresh@110 on 28 September from 7am2pm! Don’t miss out, as this is Armidale's newest and freshest dining! We will be holding a scrumptious fundraiser – only a gold coin donation for house-baked cakes and freshly roasted coffee! All proceeds donated to the paediatric (kids) ward at the Armidale hospital! Come and support us, grab yourself a tasteful treat, and meet your well-known chef! Fresh@110 will be open Monday - Friday from 6am - 2.30pm and Saturday from 7am - 12.30am and ALSO MARKET SUNDAY from 6am. We understand the needs of those early birds who need a


smashing start to the day! We will have only home-style cooking, fresh baking, and coffee! We guarantee a pleasant experience for you, your friends and your family! The location is right in the centre of Armidale, 110 Dangar street, so there is no need for long trips to enjoy that short lunch break! Fresh@110 will cater for any needs, occasions and any numbers! We offer a mouth-watering catering menu that is bound to take you by surprise and intrigue you from the first sight! Our premises have a homely atmosphere, and we only have one goal in mind – and that is to make sure that every customer leaves with a smile on their dial!



ave to be a camp o enjoy the day – it l families in the munity

18 new england focus.

nce again, the Armidale Lions Club are raising funds for Armidale Camp Quality kids and their families by way of major raffle, silent auction and our Family Fun Day. This all comes to a grand finale at the Armidale City Bowling Club BBQ area on 14 October 2012, from 11 am 'til about 2pm. We will be out in the BBQ area, where you can purchase a steak or sausage sandwich, as well as milkshakes and ice creams. The best thing of all though, is the children’s activities that we have on the day to entertain the kids.

These include a jumping castle, SooWee Magic, face painting, nail painting and hairspray colour. In previous years, the children have thoroughly enjoyed this event and all it has to offer, not to mention the Armidale Lions Club members. You don’t have to be a camp quality kid to enjoy the day – it is open to all families in the wider community, and we would greatly appreciate your support. We draw our raffle at about 1.30. First prize is a trailer + contents (worth over $5,000). We also have 11 other prizes. We are running a silent auction to

assist with the fundraising process. Items include swing and slippery slide set ($500 value), Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb for two ($416), 2 nights' accommodation deluxe cabin at Iluka, hair care product pack, promo packs, dragonfly metal sculpture and many others. Why not come and join us and go home with something wonderful, knowing that you have supported the local kids from Camp Quality!


Packsaddlers with leading art dealer Phillip Bacon at the launch of the Yellow Room Appeal earlier this year.

or more than a quarter of a century, the annual Packsaddle Packsaddlers with art agent Janie Miller, selecting prints for this year’s exhibition. fundraising exhibition has been a much anticipated fixture on first exhibition was held in the home Armidale’s calendar, attracting a crowd of Beverley and Owen Wright in the of art lovers and collectors from near early eighties. The Wrights called and far. This year, Barry Pearce, noted their home 'Packsaddle', because Emeritus Curator of Australian Art at the the roofline reminded them of such Art Gallery of New South Wales, a saddle. Owen’s saddle, used is coming to town to open on many trips, is now the the exhibition at the New group’s emblem and is on “ Master England Regional Art display at all Packsaddle sil printmaker Ba children Earlier for adults and for children. ve gi so Museum on Friday 26 exhibitions. al ill w l al H t ar e th on this year, the Packsaddlers (Michelle lk a ta October 2012 at 6pm. Since Packsaddle intmaking pr of Bookallil, Pat Elkin, Pam Koebel, Glenda The exhibition offers began, the Packsaddle in the gallerie3s Kupczyk-Romanczuk, Moira Lloyd, ay rd a wide range of prints, fundraisers have taken on Satu November at Caroline Nivison, Julia Rose, Michelle paintings, ceramics and well in excess of a 4.30pm. ” Schouten and Lynne Walker) initiated sculptures from nationally million dollars in sales and the acquisition of Margaret Olley’s renowned artists, hung have been able to support painting The Yellow Room Triptych for alongside young and emerging NERAM with the purchase of a NERAM and kick started the fundraising artists, with works contributed by new hanging system, mobile scaffolding campaign with a $55,000 donation. major Sydney galleries and individual and improved lighting; they have artists. All the artworks are for sale, and earmarked funds for the conservation the plug! funds raised support NERAM. Master of the Howard Hinton Collection, and printmaker Basil Hall will also give a talk they have put money towards over NERAM opening hours: on the art of printmaking in the galleries 50 acquisitions for the permanent Tues - Fri 10am to 5pm, Sat & on Saturday 3 November at 4.30pm. collection. Sun 10am to 4pm. Closed Mon. The four original Packsaddlers were They also contributed the funds for Ph 6772 5255. Beverley Wright, June Atherton, Pat the Packsaddle Artist Studio, which Elkin and Benoni Pearson, and the is in frequent use for art workshops



THUNDERBOLT Bullion Captain Thunderbolt's history and mystery continue s to fill the New E ngland region. ralla, Thunderbolt special events and even business cards. Country, lays claim to his Their first ever, limited edition, burial place and statue in the bullion bar commemorates both Uralla main street. and Captain Thunderbolt ... struck Recently, Uralla business from 1 oz of 99.9% copper and owners Duncan and then 99.9% gold plated to Vanessa Fischer pay homage to Uralla's launched a new gold mining heritage. oz “ Struck fromer1 pp co .9% business venture, With a limited mintage 99 of and then 99.9% 'Thunderbolts of only 999 bars, these y pa gold plated to alla's Coins & Bullion' will not last long. homage to Ur gold mining To secure your – specialising in heritage. ” Captain Thunderbolt collectable coins and Bullion Bar or enquire custom made bullion about how a bullion products. The bullion product can help your business or products are available in copper, silver organisation, speak with Duncan and or gold plated copper, solid silver and Vanessa at 'The Sweet Place' in the even solid gold. Minimum quantities main street of Uralla, or call them on of just 250 bars make them ideal for (02) 6778 3661. fundraising, corporate gifts, souvenirs,


new england focus 19

W H AT ’ S O N A R O U N D T H E R E G I O N / / O C T O B E R 2 0 1 2


Meet the manager and his team at Campus Essential, Wayne Forbes.


Wayne Forbes - Manager How long have you managed Campus Essentials, and tell us about your staff? I have worked at Campus Essentials for more than 17 years, with just one six month break in 2007. In all that time I have been ably supported by a great team of customer focused staff, all of whom bring a special expertise with them. We have Julie Tanner, who maintains our window displays; Lydia Benson, who is also our Second-hand Bookshop Manager; Desley McLeod in charge of our Australia Post outlet; and our two casuals, Jenna Blake and Alison Lemon. Why is Campus Essentials known to be a versatile business? Whilst we are generally known as a newsagent and a Post Office, we also stock a wide range of other products.

First Saturday chats The next First Saturday chats will be hosted by Elizabeth Stahlut, Solicitor, on Saturday 13 October 2012 at our offices between 10am and 1pm. Bookings are essential on 1300 642 166.

These include UNE souvenirs, special stationery and gift lines, fresh food items from the Booloominbah Collection, general grocery, confectionery and chemist items, as well as clothing lines. We really are a one stop shop. And with Sleek Hair Studio, the Second-hand Bookshop and Grind and Squeeze café all within a stone’s throw, we are a little shopping village. And a lot of our items can be purchased online, so if you don’t want to enjoy the drive out to UNE, you can always jump on your computer to get what you need. What’s popular in store right now? Although we are now in spring, our UNE hoodies are still very popular. This would be followed closely by our extensive range of UNE souvenir lines.

When 10am to 1pm; Sat 13 October 2012. Where Legal Minds, Beardy St Mall. Contact 1300 642 166.

Autumn Lodge Fete Come along for a fun day out, with lots of bargains and crafts to choose from. When Saturday 13 October 2012. Where 50 Butler Street, Armidale. Phone 6772 7533.

13 The Armidale Baby Expo The Armidale Baby Expo is a family event that offers the local community the opportunity to find out more about businesses and organisations that provide service to and support young families. When Saturday, October 27, 2012. Where Armidale Town Hall. More info


Great hair

‘the arcade’ northern carpark entry @ UNE

Thunderbolt’s Festival Great books

Thunderbolt’s Festival is Uralla’s annual Community Festival, held in conjunction with the Harleys for Humanity ‘Turkey Run’ from Newcastle to Uralla.


When Friday, October 26

somewhere different to shop

– Sunday, October 28 Where Alma Park, Uralla. More info Leanne Cooper 0488 559 928.

Ken Thompson Lodge FETE

Great food + coffee 20 new england focus.

Great gifts

There will be a formal fashion parade starting @2pm by Leonie’s Bridal shop, raffles, dunking machine, jumping castle, book stall, fairy floss, chocolate wheel, cake stall, plant stall, B.B.Q. craft stall, trash and treasure, Christmas decorations, Devonshire tea, bonsai display, to name a few. The Armidale brass band may also be in attendance in the morning with their music. When October 27, from 10 am to 2pm. Where 6 Box Hill Drive, Armidale. Contact 6770 1200.


Inverell Inverell will be a hive of activity, as The Telstra Inverell Sapphire City Festival commences in October. The Festival, in its 55th year, will be officially launched at the Communicator of the Year Dinner.


and Crowning Ceremony and Fireworks Spectacular. The finish of the Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic coincides with finale day and is itself a major attraction for the day.

Inverell and District Lapidary Club will again host the Gem and Mineral Show, along with their Rockarama Fossicking excursions. Bookings are limited, so enthusiasts should secure a spot early to avoid disappointment.

As in previous years, the Finale Day commences with the Poet’s breakfast in Campbell Park, featuring local artists. The school students were a real hit with the crowd last year and are back by popular demand.

Other events include the Inverell Art Society Competitive Exhibition, Telstra Thursday (featuring the Gadget Guy – Peter Blasina), Inverell Floral Art Society Flower Show, Holy Trinity Race Day, Miniature Traction Engine Rally and the Sapphire City River Run.

If you enjoy Scottish music, you will be treated to the sounds of the pipes, as pipe bands from around the region play a selection of songs in the CBD during the morning. The streets will be lined with spectators to cheer on the riders in the Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic, as the riders complete the gruelling 228 km trek. It is the toughest one day cycle event in the Southern Hemisphere. The race has been running for more than 50 years and continues to grow in popularity. The spectacular Festival Parade commences at 4pm and will have an amazing opening, with the 360 horsepower Yak 52 aircraft flying over in formation to commence the parade. It is obvious by the quality of the floats that entrants put in many hours of time and effort to create

he 2012 Queen and Princess entrants will be presented to the public for the first time at the dinner.

Inverell’s Got Talent will return this year and for the first time includes an event specific for juniors. The Gadget Guy, Peter Blasina, will be wowing the crowd during Inverell’s Got Talent on Telstra Thursday, 25 October. A highlight of the Festival will be the joy flights on offer by the Yak 52 Ex-Advanced Russian Military Aircraft. The Festival will reach its crescendo with the Festival Parade, the Best Employment Finale

their masterpieces. Campbell Park is then the venue for the remainder of the evening. You simply cannot beat the excitement of the Great Duck Race on the Macintyre River, or the many food stalls and rides. There will be live entertainment for the whole family, with the youngsters entertained by the spectacular Hound Dogs. The headline artist is world renowned ventriloquist, Darren Carr. The Best Employment Finale also features the Crowning Ceremony and will be topped off by the amazing fireworks display off the town bridge, presented by Holy Smoke. Bring down a picnic rug and set yourself up for a fabulous night of fun and entertainment. Car enthusiasts will be able to get their fix when the Sapphire City Show and Shine is held on Sunday 28 October. Vehicles of all shapes and sizes from all over NSW and interstate will be on display. There are competitions held throughout the day for visitors to the Show and Shine. It is a top class event, and organisers are thrilled that the event is once again part of the Festival program.

new england focus 21


Home of Artesian Water Country. progressive and dynamic township situated at the heart of the northern wheat belt and recognised nationally as Australia’s Artesian Spa Capital. Ideally nestled on the New South Wales and Queensland border, Moree Plains is an area rich in culture, heritage, and agriculture, with each component offering defining characteristics to the towns, villages and the community. Take a dip and relax in one of our Artesian Spas, before enjoying a self guided heritage walk, a stroll through the many beautiful parks and gardens, or stop for a pampering massage in one of the luxurious salons, day spas, and alternate therapy centres. Join one of our guided Agri tours … meander through the largest pecan nut farm in the Southern Hemisphere, learn how to grow a pair of jeans, or visit an olive farm. An exquisite Art Deco theme throughout the township provides a spectacular old-world ambience, and the combination of nationally and locally owned retailers offers a vast array shopping and dining opportunities for locals and visitors. The Moree Plains retailers provide a range of speciality boutique stores, as well as nationally and locally owned and operated department stores. Scattered throughout our Shire

22 new england focus.

are retail rettailil outlets outle l ts displaying and selling unique regional produce. Moree offers a superb selection of clothing, tle, and shoes, jewellery, homewares, sporting “ Explore a lit ded ar w re you’ll be equipment and merchandise, art, and much and with the warmun try more. Convenient parking, friendly service welcoming cothe of y lit ita sp ho and quality products ensure your Moree beautiful towlons cated Plains shopping experience is a positive and and villages ire .” sh e th in ith w memorable occasion. Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway, business trip, short or extended stay, Moree Plains Mungindi and Boomi Artesian Pool complexes; or offers an impressive selection of motels, hotels, caravan why not call into one of our historic village pubs and and camping accommodation options to suit all tastes and experience some good ol’ fashioned hospitality and have a cool budgets. beverage and a great meal with our friendly locals. Covering an expansive area, the Moree Plains Shire Experience modern country living at its best – visit the vibrant encompasses many small towns and villages, all of which are shire of Moree Plains. Whether you’re planning a short or long unique in atmosphere and historic significance. Explore a little, visit, or perhaps looking to relocate to a life less complicated, and you’ll be rewarded with the warm and welcoming country contact the Moree Visitors’ Information Centre for friendly, local hospitality of the beautiful towns and villages located within the advice. Shire. Contact the friendly team at Tourism Moree to enquire Whilst travelling around the shire, visitors can call in and rest, about your next holiday or visit to the vibrant Moree Plains relax and rejuvenate in the famous Artesian water at both our 02 6757 3350.


Moree Artesian

weights and strength equipment, as well as a group fitness room which hosts a number of fitness classes each week, but is versatile enough to cater for private functions and conferences. MAAC Wellness is the new place to pamper yourself; it offers 8 treatment rooms to indulge in a range of health and wellness treatments. And if that’s not enough, you can also get a great coffee or a light meal from the in house café and peruse our range of therapy, swim and fitness products. The benefits of natural Artesian mineral waters were discovered thousands of years ago and have been of ts fi ne “ The be sian used for their curative powers since ancient times. natural Arte s mineral water Many Europeans steeped in spa culture use ed he Moree Artesian Aquatic Centre were discoverye nds of ars thermal rich spas for therapeutic value. Today, sa ou th is Moree’s major tourist attraction. ago, and haver their you don’t have to go to Europe to enjoy the The beautifully renovated outdoor been used fo ers since w po e health benefits of nature’s gift, as this can tiv ra cu facility boasts a brand new FINA ancient times. ” be experienced right here in Moree. Some standard Olympic pool, two Artesian hot pools, of the reputed benefits of the waters include: which are naturally heated up to 40°C, a program rejuvenation and re-hydration of the skin, assisting pool, which is heated to 30°C, ideal for hydrotherapy, in detoxifying the body’s lymphatic system, replenishing aqua aerobics and learn to swim. In addition to the cellular composition, relaxing muscles and easing of joint pains – spectacular hydro-play and splash pad for the littlies, there is a 10 renowned benefits for those with muscular and arthritic problems, m high waterslide for all who are young at heart. hydroimmersion treatment of rheumatic complaints, assistance September 2012 saw the opening of the Wellness Centre Resort with the management of sciatica and nerve troubles, analgesic Style Hot Soak Pool, Spa Beds and Sauna. As an introductory and sedative effects – great for those who have trouble sleeping, offer ‘til end of October 2012, you can try this area out for $15/ relief of symptoms for psoriasis, eczema and other common skin session (normally $20/session), with a guarantee of no more than complaints. 15 people per session. This area can also be booked for private functions, making it an ideal space for intimate gatherings. the plug! Contact the Centre to make your booking now. To complement our traditional outdoor aquatic facility, we The Centre is open daily, closing only on Christmas Day. are excited to launch two new service areas in 2013. MAAC (02) 6757 3450 Fitness, which includes a 150 m² gym with cardiovascular, free Cnr Anne & Gosport St. Moree NSW 2400.

new england focus 23


Brennan “ Rusden Street Medical Practice farewells their senior practice nurse ,Jean Brennan. This is a tribute to Jean's 28 years of service to the practice and her dedication to childhood immunisation. ”

hat is the history of She worked in many wards at the hospital, Rusden Street Medical including the Emergency Department, but Practice? particularly enjoyed her work in the children’s Our practice originally ward. She joined the practice at 'The Minto' began as 'The Minto Practice' with Dr. Harold when we had 4 doctors, 2 RNs and 3 office Royle in 1947. Dr. Phillip Bookallil staff. We have since grown to have 7 arrived in 1970, Dr. John Waters doctors, 4 RNs and 7 office staff. in 1973, Dr. Baker in 1984, We did not have a lot Dr. Pain in 1989 and Dr. of spare space in the old Jean Brennan has retired after Knirsch in 1994. building, and we often s with us. Jean ar ye 28 Our current building laughed about Jean’s st 4 was one of the la es to was purpose built in desk, which was a small rs year trained nu rmidale 1999, when we were space on the top of A m fro graduate fore be , 70 19 joined by Dr. Luke the vaccine fridge. She in l ta pi Hos of Bookallil and Dr. Rod graduated to having her the introduction university trained Martin in 2010, and we own office in the new nurses.” became 'The Rusden Street building! Medical Practice'. Why has Jean been so We hear that you have a most valuable to your practice? valued staff member retiring? Jean has been a wonderful asset Yes, our senior practice nurse, Jean Brennan, to the doctors and staff at our practice. The has retired after 28 years with us. Jean was one doctors have always had complete trust in of the last 4 year trained nurses to graduate her clinical skills, and her keen powers of from Armidale Hospital in 1970, before the observation have saved quite a few lives. introduction of university trained nurses. She has a wonderful rapport with adults

24 new england focus.

and children and has managed to calm many a nervous or upset patient prior to a procedure or immunisation. She always managed to have eyes everywhere and her ‘finger on the pulse’ and know exactly when the doctors needed assistance. A registered nurse is an integral part of a practice and provides great support to the doctors in helping with immunisations, dressings, ECGs, procedures etc. and Jean filled the role with dedication, expertise, diplomacy and love of her job. Why is Jean particularly passionate about childhood immunisation? During her working years at the local hospital, Jean nursed many children suffering from illnesses that we now have immunisations available for, and she often remarked that it was extremely hard seeing children suffer needlessly. Whooping Cough is one such disease that was almost completely controlled because of high immunisation rates until recently. On her days off from the surgery, Jean worked for Community Health taking part in

the school immunisation program. Her face was a welcome sight to many of the children who knew her from the surgery. Your team's farewell wishes to Jean? All the doctors and staff wish Jean well in her retirement. She will have more time to spend with family and friends and will be travelling overseas for the birth of another grandchild at the end of the year. She does hope to use her skills by doing some remote nursing in the future. We recently held a farewell party for Jean, where we were all able to express our deep gratitude and thanks for her many years of friendship and dedication. We are very much a family practice and although Jean will be greatly missed at work, the friendship will continue on. Who will be replacing Jean? We do have four registered nurses at the surgery, and we welcome Fiona Barrett to the team of Jane Colling, Maria Fitzsimons and Michelle Straub who, along with our great office staff, keep the practice running smoothly while Jean enjoys a well earned holiday.

new england focus



Armidale Salvos - Celebrate 125 years Armi Armidale SALVOS are celebrating 125 years in Armidale and a building refurbishment. We talk to Lieutenant Ged Oldfi Oldfield about both the past and his plans for the future.


ow long ha h have ve y you ou b been the LLieutenant for the Armidale Salvos? My wife, Jeanie, and I have been in ministry since 2001. We have had a varied amount of experience during the last 12 years that includes: rural chaplaincy, aged care, seniors ministry, corps officers, also divisional appointments that include divisional public relations, oversight of community care that includes hospital visitation and home visits, divisional business oversight, and now we are back where we feel we are called to as the Corps Officers (Ministers) of the church here in Armidale. Over the last 12 years we worked as non commissioned officers with the title of Divisional Envoys, and we were commissioned in November 2010 as Lieutenants.

26 new england focus.

Congratulations on Armidale Salvos reaching 125 years. Please give us some history highlights? Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s actually 126 years, and in that time, as with most country churches, we have had some difficult years and some good years. Trends change, and with that unfortunately people come and go. We tend not to dwell on the past; the exciting thing is that after 126 years, we are still here and are here to stay. We want the community to know that we still have core values and beliefs that have stood the test of time, and we do not detract away from that but as our traditions and uniform promotes, we are available. We stand firm on the words from our founder William Booth: â&#x20AC;&#x153;While people suffer I'll fight, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll fight to the very end.


How do you plan to celebrate this milestone? We, as the Armidale Church, are planning the official relaunch of the building and the Community Kitchen on Sunday 25 November. Part of our focus is to invite those who have had a connection with the Armidale Salvation Army to attend the meeting on the 25th, to see the physical changes to the building, but to feel the warmth that is now present within the people who attend. We are going to be 126 years young in this community, and that in itself is something to be proud of. We need to ensure that we will be here for another century doing what it is that we are known for, and that is linking with the community providing support and programs that meet the needs of those who find themselves in distress. As a Christian organisation, our message is simple: we exist to save souls, grow saints and serve suffering humanity. The meeting on the 25th will be one of celebration, to thank those who have been faithful over the years, to welcome new members of our congregation with the enrolment of a new Soldier, our Divisional Commander Major Philip McLaren will dedicate the building into active service for the community, and Richard Torbay has been asked to open the new Community Kitchen. Tell us about your recent renovations? The renovations of the building include an upgrade of the old kitchen that will be used for our community outreach project. In the past we have been supported by community volunteers, who have staffed our Community Kitchen that provides meals to those in our community who are less fortunate or have fallen on difficult times. We want to extend this service to reach into the homes of the elderly living on their own and to those who are lonely, and invite them to come along to this fellowship outreach. The renovations to the kitchen and community hall have been funded equally from our own funds, a generous grant from the Government, and a donation

eenheat will provide a bigger hall and an up up to from Kleenheat chen, giving us the necessary infrastructure to date kitchen, provide a better service for the community. hurch and family store has also been a part of Our church this new look renovation. The church has been made bigger, allowing us to cater for future growth, and the store has had an upgrade, providing much needed space that puts this service all under one roof. Our store continues to benefit from the most generous donations from the community, which in turn allows us to help those in need.

continued over

The renovations of the building include an upgrade of the kitchen, â&#x20AC;&#x153; that will be used for our community outreach project. In the past we have been supported by community volunteers, who have staffed our Community Kitchen that provides meals to those in our community who are less fortunate or have fallen on difficult times.â&#x20AC;?

new england focus 27

Armidale Salvos - Celebrate 125 years continued from over

How’s your store going, and tell us about the volunteers who work there? Our family store continues to provide more than just an opportunity to purchase items at discounted prices, but is a direct front line link for community outreach. Our mission for the family store is to provide a place that is warm and inviting, where you will find caring staff and volunteers who will provide a listening ear and support when needed. Our volunteers are the backbone to our organisation; we could not achieve what we do without them. Our volunteer staff provide drivers for our delivery and pick up vehicle, cleaning of our premises, sorting of donated items and general customer service. Do the Armidale Salvos provide counselling and crisis assistance? Yes, we do. We have an on site trained

28 new england focus.

money care counsellor, who also provides com- of children. munity service and welfare support. What's happening at Uralla? What would you say to someone We have made initial contact considering attending your with the schools, where we Sunday services? provide funding for a Our church services are breakfast club and a Our volunteer e warm and welcoming, proreferral system providing id staff prov r ou r viding an opportunity for community service for fo drivers up open worship. Although those in need. We have delivery and pickof vehicle, cleaningrting The Salvation Army is a a plan to expand our our premises, sos and denominational section service further into the of donated itemer of the overall Christian community in the near om st general cu e.” Church, all denominations future, with a bible study ic serv are welcome to attend. You group and other opportuwill find our worship includes nities. prayer, singing and a message Plans for the future? based on the bible and its teachings. As Our plan for the future is to grow a part of the Christian church, we also provide our church, as we continue to link closely wedding services and dedications (christenings) with the Armidale community. We want to

evolve with a changing world and a changing community, without losing sight of our core beliefs. Our response to our community is one of Christianity with our sleeves rolled up, convinced of our calling to help those in need and providing a home where everyone can find a place to belong. Our dream and vision is to ensure that The Salvation Army is again cemented into the heartbeat of the community and that our flag is still flying, as we partner together for a better future. As a Christian Church community, our response has to be one compelled by Christian love. Scripture reminds us from Micah 6:8, “And what does the Lord require from you, To act justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God”. end.

New England

Honey Chicken from The Uralla Bowling Club.

eat. Dining Guide is available for iPhone & Android mobiles. new england focus 29

eat. Azka Restaurant, Wine and Tapas Bar Quality Hotel Powerhouse Armidale’s signature restaurant has been reborn as Azka Restaurant. More than 70 Moroccan hanging lanterns adorn this vibrant dining venue, filling it with colour and exotic ambience. A fire adds to the atmosphere in winter while in fine weather, patrons can dine alfresco on the terrace. Azka Restaurant features beautifully cooked dishes with subtle Mediterranean influences that will appeal to every taste. The menu focuses on fresh seasonal produce from the New England.

Cotswold Gardens We welcome everybody to enjoy a seasonal à la carte menu, along with nightly specials. The burning wood fire adds to the ambience and surrounds of old world charm. The Manor Restaurant is an inviting environment for romantic candlelit dinners, or to enjoy a quiet meal with friends or family. Function packages are available to suit special occasions, business events, or celebrations catering for up to 60 people. The bar and lounge area is very homely, as it is the ideal place for predinner drinks or relaxing after dining. Our local head chef, Rebecca Young, has a vast knowledge of the New England region, chefing for most of her time in her home town. Rebecca has a great passion for producing high quality meals sourced from local produce.

Owners John & Denise Wilks.

Quality Hotel Powerhouse, 31 Marsh Street, Armidale t 6772 7788

34 Marsh Street, Armidale t 6772 8222

open Azka Restaurant – 7 days for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Azka Wine & Tapas Bar – daily from 11am – late.

open 7 days: 6pm until late.

Uralla Bowlo Chinese Restaurant At the Uralla Bowlo Chinese Restaurant, our goal is to provide the best quality and best value Chinese food to our customers. We have been at Kootingal Bowling club for almost seven years and have built a good reputation in the local and Tamworth area. We serve many popular meals; for example, Mongolian dishes, satay dishes, and big and yummy omelettes. Our lunch specials are only $8.50; all the meals can be dine in or takeaway. We cater for all functions; our banquets are from $10 per head – depending on what you’d like to choose from our menu! Our restaurant can seat around 70 people, and the function room can seat up to 100 people, with a stage and dancing floor! Great for parties! Dine in or takeaway catering for all functions.

Corner of Queen and Hill Streets, Uralla t 6774 8807 open Wednesday to Sunday: lunch 12pm - 2pm; dinner 5pm - late.

30 new england focus.

Susie Coventry, Maître d’

Ben and his team.


Chef Cotswold Gardens.




Describe the ambience of your restaurant ... Previous to the Cotswold Gardens being a Motel and Restaurant, it was a Manor, built in the 1800s. I love the friendly atmosphere cooking. and old world charm of the restaurant, I was given the opportunity to do a described by many who dine with us as chef apprenticeship at the Wicklow Hotel, “more like a country guest house”. You can where I commenced, and I completed relax and enjoy your meals, surrounded by the apprenticeship in 2010. I studied at the beauty of years past. Tamworth campus, and during my studies I What customers do you attract? We was lucky enough to work with many attract many travellers staying in talented chefs, who have helped the Motel Monday to Sunday, shape the chef I am today. but love to have the locals How long have you Our brand new of the town and region worked at Cotswold spring and too. This past winter we Gardens restaurant? summer menueeisk. I started Thursday night I started working at w starting this it for ed n as a locals night, and Cotswold Gardens in ig have des s th on m er m ar this summer we will be April this year. w the d it’s an e, al id rm A of bringing more attractive Describe your menu? New dedicated to the.” events to entice our Our brand new spring on England regi locals to dine with us at and summer menu is Cotswold Gardens. starting this week. I have How would you describe the designed it for the warmer people you work with? months of Armidale, and it’s John and Denise Wilks are the owners of dedicated to the New England region. The the establishment. We have a great team new menu consists of tasty light meals with at Cotswold Gardens. We all get along well the utmost care taken to source fresh, local together and strive for customer satisfaction. produce for salads and plenty of seasonal Emma-Kate Jaques, Georgie Chorley and vegetables. Samantha Jex are the rest of the team. Being Our meats have been chosen to satisfy a small establishment, we describe ourselves every customers’ needs, from beef to fresh as the ‘Cotswold Gardens Family’, and we salmon, and we don’t forget about the vegetarians either. There are plenty of choices all pitch in to help and work where needed, making your experience with us warm and on our nightly specials board and our new à inviting. la carte menu. here did you learn to cook? I started work when I was 16 at cafés around Armidale, which ignited my passion for

new england focus 31



A R I E S.

L E O.


MAR 21 - APR 20

JUL 24 - AUG 23

NOV 23 - DEC 21

You may have been feeling unsupported or a little let down lately, and the reason why this is happening is so you can recognise how strong you already are and how little you need from other people. The outcome of this lesson will mean there is no hurdle you canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t remove from your future. Carnelian is a very powerful crystal to reignite your strength.

You are about to embark on a journey of self-discovery, through the influence of another being. If you use this person as a mirror, you will be able to disregard old hurts and grow into a more comfortable you with self-appreciation, where success will flow easily. Rose Quartz will aid in forgiveness.



C A P R I C O R N.

APR 21 - MAY 21

AUG 24 - SEPT 23

DEC 22 - JAN 20

Try not to worry about your ability to support yourself. You will always have opportunity lining up when you need it, but fear will hinder this ability. Instead, look at how another door opens for you just before you need it. This will always be the case for you; just relax and allow your abundance to flow. Ruby is great for dispelling fear.


You may have been feeling unwanted or neglected lately and may fear being abandoned. Try not to allow this fear to gain strength. Instead, work with weakening it by seeing how appreciated you already are and how many people love and adore you. There will always be opened arms to welcome you. Citrine will shatter negative thoughts and fears.

Holidays and adventure are likely to be a big influence in your near future. You may just need to do nothing to re-boot and recharge. To avoid returning from your voyage exhausted, try to make unwinding your major incentive. You will throw yourself back into life when you return anyway. Aquamarine will help release any tension.

Expect total change from your challenging situation. The changes will allow you to experience the feeling of a new beginning so far removed from how it was, that you may feel re-born. Set some fresh goals, and donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t compromise your standards for anyone. Clear quartz is a very powerful amplifier of energy.



SEPT 24 - OCT 23

JAN 21 - FEB 19

Listen to your wise words that you give in a counselling scenario, as this is how your guides are communicating your answers to you. There is no better way for you to hear than to speak. Trust and try. Your past fears and hurts are surfacing lately, so you can release the effects from your reality. Malachite is very powerful for bringing past hurts to the surface.

Your career path and employment opportunities may be opening up to a new level of success. Avoid self doubt or sabotage, as any training or learning required will be a part of the journey. You will enjoy your new beginnings, as you have wanted change for some time now. Sapphire is great for embracing different realities.


S C O R P I O.

P I S C E S.

JUN 23 - JUL 23 JU

OCT 24 - NOV 22

FEB 20 - MAR 20

You have experienced rough emotions just recently, but from now there should be no more hurdles to overcome regarding this challenge. Things should be exactly as they appear from here forward. Set some new intentions or goals, and give yourself permission to succeed. Jade is great for wellbeing and positive attitudes.

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Expect some nice calm energy around your living circumstances. Things have changed, and for this reason old unfavourable habits needed to be broken. You recognised influences that may have hindered your positive outcome and have taken action to change these things. Rose quartz holds a very soft, nurturing vibration.

You have a streak of good luck at present, so make as many wishes as you want and set some fresh goals. Fill your being with the excitement of already having what you desire, think thanks to the universe, and forget about your wish. You should not have to wait too long before it appears. Citrine attracts an abundance; carry a piece.

Celebrations and success for your dedication over the past few months are about to pay off. Know you deserve this change and swim with it. Listen to your inner voice, as you are very intuitive and rarely wrong, and you will have a secure plan to follow. DO NOT IGNORE YOUR INTUITION. Amethyst is great for helping us reach our full potential.

artist profile


Jackson. Robyn Jackson is exhibiting her works again at Gallery 126 due to popular demand. She explains that she's most looking forward to hearing how her audience interprets her work.


hen and why are you exhibiting at Gallery 126? Connect will be open from Friday 12 October to Saturday 3 November. I am happy to say this is my fourth solo exhibition at Gallery 126. Anne and Stuart’s dedication and passion for the art scene is evident in the way they present their gallery and the tireless help they give to their artists. Work is always shown to the best advantage, and the standard of presentation is high. After you have got a body of work together for an exhibition, it is so nice to just relax and know your work is in good hands. I am always excited to take part in exhibitions at 126 and look forward to showing this year's work. What is the theme of your exhibition? I would say the theme throughout my exhibition would be 'love'. That is, the dark side of love, the light side of love, the sad side, and the happy side of love. Why are acrylics your preferred choice of materials? I love acrylics. They were made for impatient artists just like me (though I do

with my usual acrylics, I have found this use other mediums in my work like charcoal to be very exciting. And with the many and oil pastel). You can use them thin like mediums now available to add to acrylics, watercolour, or beef them up to be meaty like the choices are limitless. oils, without that long, agonising drying time. Where does your inspiration come from? Acrylics give me the freedom to make Every day life. One of the joys of living in mistakes and take risks. My works can change a regional area for a long time is that we many times in the process of creating. I am often cross paths with people who share our known to repeatedly change my palette if a memories and social connections. This makes painting is not working. I like to use a spatula life in the country very rewarding. But as my and scrape back, building layers of colour and inspiration comes from everyday living, texture. I can work quickly in large this can also become very tricky areas, and this keeps me from – and I am really mindful of fiddling with too much detail this. (my greatest enemy). So when I connect with I have just read a ith I try to deal w e an idea, I use a huge quote this week from th d an re the figu ion ns te amount of fabrication Bryce Courtney in the e Th . pe ca minds and distortion to the weekend paper. He between the two,and point the inspiration is said, “Life is about metaphorically makes visually, is what only the springboard to making mistakes and it interesting.” the end result. learning from them. You For this exhibition, I don’t learn from success. have been looking at three You learn from stuffing French artists: Degas, Matisse, up”. I feel acrylics allow me to Toulouse Lautrec, to see how they stuff up and hopefully learn. took everyday scenes in the bathroom, in With this exhibition, I was lucky enough the bedroom etc and made them beautiful, to trial a new paint made by Atelier. This dramatic and fascinating. Like these great paint has a vividly matte finish and could be artists, I have taken people in natural described as a gouache-like acrylic. Combined

everyday situations, going about their domestic business to make a story, but have done it my way. I like the viewer to read the painting as they see it. For me, there is nothing better than listening to someone else’s view of what they think the painting is really about. For me, it’s about the relationship we have with our surrounds. I try to deal with the figure and the mindscape. The tension between the two, metaphorically and visually, is what makes it interesting. I like to think my work will take you to a different place, if only for a heartbeat. Isn’t that what art is meant to do? Take us outside of ourselves. Which artists influence your work? My three little artist grandsons, Jay, Henry and Dion, have my greatest admiration. I love to watch as they draw, showing lots of information with so few lines to tell their story. I have strived to do this all my life; though I do get excited when I turn my back to find a whole tube of my cadmium paint squeezed out, with a “what’s wrong with you" look to greet me. But really, here in New England we have great Australian artists right in our backyard. I love it, and they influence me every day.

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150th Birthday


Central S C H O O L Congratulations to Uralla Central al School on reaching your Sesquicentenary Sesquicentenary. Principal Sue Brown tells us about the 150th birthday clelebration plans and the benefits of being a Kinder to Year 12 school. ow long have you worked at Uralla Central School, and when did you become the Principal? I have been privileged to spend the last twenty wonderful years as an educator at Uralla Central School and have been the Principal since 2009. Congratulations to the school for reaching 150 years. How do you plan to celebrate this milestone? Our celebrations stretch over Friday 9 November and Saturday 10 November 2012. We have a school Open Day on Friday, along with our formal Sesquicentenary Assembly at 10.15am, which will be attended by a number of dignitaries including the Regional Director, Mr Jim White, our School Education Director, Mr Phil Jones and member for Northern Tablelands, Mr Richard Torbay. During Friday, our students will be experiencing school life across the fifteen decades since Uralla Central has been


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in operation. There will be great activities and new learning experiences, which will be lots of fun. We’ll also be burying a time capsule and unveiling our Sesquicentenary Path at the front of the school. On Saturday from 11am until 2pm, we are holding a Family Fun Day at the school. The Uralla Neighbourhood Centre and Uralla Unique Markets are setting up stalls, and there will be activity stations for children, along with food and drink outlets. On Saturday evening, our hospitality students will cater for the Formal Sesquicentenary Dinner in the school hall. Tickets for the dinner are $40 and are available from the Uralla Central School office from Monday 8 October 2012. We are very excited to have Steve Thorneycroft and Steve Tafra providing our entertainment on the night. Tours of Lockheed Martin Satellite Station are also available over the weekend at scheduled times.

e “ Tickets for th

d More information about the school’s history; in particular dinner are $40 an the m fro e bl la ai are av our Sesquicentenary activities in 1942, when about 300 hool Uralla Central Scday 8 is available on the school people arrived in Uralla from on M office from website: www.uralla-c. Sydney, Newcastle and the North October 2012.” Coast after the attack on Pearl How is your P&C involved Harbour and the fall of Singapore. in the Sesquicentenary These families were billeted by locals celebrations? and the children attended our school, The P&C have been very supportive of the raising the student population considerably. In Sesquicentenary Committee. They kindly those days, rural schools were not allowed to purchased special medallions to commemorate offer a language; however, Uralla Central was the event, which will be given to all of our given special dispensation to teach French to the current students, staff and dinner guests. As children who had come from city schools. their Sesquicentenary gift to the school, the P&C Also during the war, children began to dig have arranged for a large commemorative paver trenches in what is now our school oval, with to be laid at the front entrance, and they’re also help from fathers, and timber from Kentucky helping out with the Family Fun Day. Station was hauled in to cover the trenches for Can you give us a history rundown? extra protection. As you can imagine, so many interesting We are very fortunate to have had Mr Graham things have happened at Uralla Central School Wilson, a local and very well respected historian, over 150 years. research and write our school’s history for us World War II was a very interesting period in over the past year. His work will be published


150th Birthday

in book form and will be available for purchase over the Sesquicentenary weekend. Memorable moments at Uralla Central School? The school fire of April 1915 was a significant event in our history. All four classrooms were destroyed, and the students moved across the road to a private home for their schooling until the school was rebuilt. The acquisition of Year 11 and Year 12 was a very significant achievement by the school community. The Department of Education finally succumbed to school community pressure, and the first senior students began their HSC course in 1993. More recently, we have had extensive refurbishment of school facilities, including

a Hospitality Trade Training Centre and the construction of a covered outdoor learning area and four new primary classrooms. Tell us about your staff ... I have a total staff of about 40, which includes our teachers and all the support staff, and I am thrilled and privileged to work with every single one of them. Everyone works together with utter determination and commitment to ensure that our students have the best possible learning opportunities every day at Uralla Central. What are the advantages of being a KinderYear 12 school? The obvious advantage in a K - 12 school is that there is a smooth transition for students from Kindergarten right through their 13 years of schooling until they finish the HSC. Teachers

and students get to know each other very well, and we’re in a great position to provide a very personalised education program for each of our students. But there is so much more to K - 12 schools than the convenience of being a ‘one-stop-shop’ for education. The other truly wonderful quality of a K - 12 school is the interaction that occurs between our students across all age groups. Our older students take care of our younger children, and the younger children look to senior students as role models. K - 12 assemblies, where students of all ages are performing and receiving awards, is a magnificent experience. Tell us about your Transition Programs? We have two very successful Transition Programs at Uralla Central. Our Kindergarten Transition Program runs for ten weeks from mid

Term 3 to mid Term 4 each year. The children respond very well to our Kinder teacher’s program of activities, so they are confident and happy about coming to ‘big school’ the following year. The Year 7 Transition Program is also a great initiative, which is coordinated by the incoming Year Adviser. The Adviser visits our partner schools and our primary department and runs activities that assist students to learn about how to manage the changes associated with moving from primary school to high school. These activities, along with two Experience Days, allow the students to meet and socialise together prior to starting Year 7. Again, the Transition Program makes the move from a more dependent learning environment to a more independent high school learning environment a lot easier for students at the start of the school year.

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care The local RSPCA team share a common passion about caring for animals and contributing to their welfare. he Armidale and District Branch of the RSPCA is one of 28 volunteer branches across regional NSW. Compared to other branches, ours has a large number of volunteers of all ages and backgrounds and because of the support from the community and over 100 volunteers, our local branch is able to make a sizeable impact on animal welfare, including caring for and rehoming approximately 200 animals a year. However, even this achievement does not enable us to save all the animals that are surrendered and abandoned in this community. There are simply more pets in need of rescue than we can take into care. All pet owners can therefore help us make a difference to animal welfare by desexing their animals. The Branch runs a desexing campaign every winter, with the support of all the local Councils and vets to assist low income households, and requests for


assistance can be sent to the Branch throughout the year. If you are enthusiastic about animal welfare and would like to make an active contribution, please consider joining us as a volunteer. If are able to take on another pet, you may want to volunteer as a foster carer. We are always seeking carers for dogs, cats, puppies and kittens and sometimes other animals such as guinea pigs, rabbits and ferrets, but we particularly need carers for medium to large dogs and puppies and for adult cats. Some people are apprehensive that they will get too attached to the animals to be able to give them away, but most carers discover that finding permanent loving homes for animals that have been in their care is very rewarding. Also rewarding is the network of like-minded friends that you meet by being actively involved in the Branch.

A good way to find out more about the RSPCA and to meet some of its members is to come along to one of our monthly Adopt A Pet Days. These are normally held on the first Saturday of the month and are advertised in the local paper. Foster carers bring the animals in their care to these events, to give members of the public an opportunity to meet prospective new pets. So, if you are looking for a new pet, this is a good way to meet some of the animals that are available. These events also enable those who are unable to take animals into care to spend a few hours volunteering with our animals on the day. Adopt A Pet Days are held at the Creeklands, near the Information Centre. Other activities and events include the monthly market stall, the annual Million Paws Walk, also at the Creeklands, and the Trivia Night. These events provide opportunities for

volunteering and supporting the local branch. Of course, one of the best ways all pet loving members of the community can support us is by purchasing your next best friend from the RSPCA. In doing so, you know that you are not encouraging irresponsible breeding, including puppy farms, and youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be supported in finding the companion that is best suited to you and your lifestyle. If you are looking for a particular type of companion, the RSPCA has a website: www. that enables you to search RSPCA animals across the country, or just in Armidale, that are in need of homes. Our Branch works closely with the Armidale Companion Animal Shelter, and we also encourage you to adopt from them. They have great photos of the animals that are available on their website: armidaleanimalshelter.

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Heritage Homestead Series The New England Conservatorium’s Heritage Homestead Series offers a magical combination of beautiful Chamber Music performed in three of the New England’s private homesteads, surrounded by their stunning springtime gardens. This innovative series was created to showcase NECOM’s staff of talented musicians and to celebrate the New England’s impressive architectural heritage. These exclusive concerts take you into the intimacy of the region’s most prestigious homesteads, to hear exquisite Chamber Music performed live. As these homesteads are not open to the public, these concerts are very special and unique. On Saturday 13 October at Chevy Chase, violinist Alex Hiew’s piano trio String Theory performs Debussy, Faure, Massenet and Ravel, who were all composing their glorious music at the time Chevy Chase was being built; and on Sunday 21 October at the 1840 Ohio Homestead outside Walcha, The Tablelands Trio of flute, harp and keyboard performs music of


the era up to this present day. And on Sunday 4 November, world renowned composer Elena Kats-Chernin joins NECOM musicians to perform her much-loved and admired music in the grandeur of The Great Hall at Petersons Winery and Guesthouse. Don’t miss these exclusive afternoon concerts. You will not only give yourself a real treat for your senses, but concert proceeds will raise funds for a much-needed piano for NECOM’s community programs. As seating is limited, early booking is advised. Book your tickets today at NECOM (02) 6773 6419, at Frog Crossing in Walcha (02) 6777 2333 or at Dymocks in The Mall.

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Services and Staff Management. Employers can rely on speediestaffsolutions to provide the expertise and technology for operating an efficient and compliant payroll service for their business, including: maintenance of employee records, online payslips, payroll reconciliations, superannuation and Payroll/PAYG tax reporting, compensation and payment summaries. At speediestaffsolutions, we take care of the hassle and stress of hiring a new employee and ensure that employers are satisfied with their new staff member. By outsourcing HR, staff and payroll management to SSS Professional Recruitment Services, employers and businesses allow themselves to get on with what they do best – getting on with their business!

new england focus 39



Plant Nursery – Uralla

Julie Hicks has just opened ened her ‘boutique nursery’. ell us about your new home and nursery in Uralla ... Some years ago, I was searching for a parcel of land where I could have space for a sustainable horticultural enterprise, a home, and to build something to leave for my family. I found that in Uralla. My son and his wife joined me in the vision, and now after 2 years and many months more of hard work, we have established a nursery shop, an adjoining small house, igloos and shade houses, chicken housing, sheds, watering systems, and growing areas for vegetable seed production, an orchard and rows of native plants. I have to say that dreams do come true, if the passion stays alive! The shop could be called a ‘boutique nursery’, because we are small in size but big in heart. Our focus is to provide a unique range of organically grown food plants, earth-friendly products and cold-climate plants suited to our Tablelands climate. The business name, Little Ladybird Plant Nursery, was an inspiration after seeing the large amount of ladybird beetles that were present in our gardens last year. What is your background? I grew up on a cattle property at Nowendoc,


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south of Walcha. Mum had a big garden where she grew all our vegies and fruit and a huge array of flowers. When I had a family and a home of my own, I would spend as much time as I could creating gardens around us. Then I moved into producing plants for sale at the local ‘Sunday market’ and a nursery at Inverell. I had worked with hydroponic growing on a large scale in the area also. At the age of 40, I was accepted to study for the Advanced Certificate of Horticulture through the Orange Agricultural College. That time was the best learning experience of my life! We moved to Coffs Harbour, where I worked as Admin Assistant in the (then) Department of Land and Water Conservation, and the formative years of the Catchment Management Board for that region. I also worked parttime in administration for the local Landcare organisation. After eight years there, and the family now grown, I moved back to Armidale about five years ago. Since then, I have completed a two-year course in Feng Shui and Geobiology through the Australian College of Environmental Studies at Melbourne and worked as a professional gardener until recent times.

What can we expect to find at the Little Ladybird Plant Nursery? We produce all our own vegetable and herb seedlings organically, often in pots rather than in tiny punnets. Most seedlings are heirloom varieties that keep their original characteristics year after year. Also available is a range of home-grown heirloom vegetable seed, which is sold in packets under our own brand name, Life-Force Seeds. You will also find traditional fruit trees, berry, citrus and olive varieties, roses, cottage garden plants, shrubs and flowering plants to suit our frosty climate. I want to grow alongside my customers in this early stage of the nursery, so I will do my best to fill special requests. Our fertiliser range is selective, preferring to stock with products by Nutri-Tech Solutions and products that are organic but ‘natural’ (no additives that come from abattoirs). We have in stock gardening aids such as ties, gloves, digger/trowels, watering cans, spray units, slug traps and copper tape, and even hand soap by Seasol.

Who would you like to thank for helping you to achieve your dream? First and foremost, my heart-felt thanks goes to my son, Darren McDonnell and his wife, Jasmin, for their big aspirations and work-load to carry us all through. A huge ‘thank you’ also goes to my loving mother, and life-partner, Nevyl, who have given the best support possible. Of course, my home and nursery would not exist without the expert work of builders Glenn and Neville Waters, of Waters Homes, and their crew. Many thanks go also to my neighbours, who contributed towards my dream in many little ways. Where can we find your nursery? The Little Ladybird Plant Nursery is located on the highway at the south end of Uralla – opposite the Driver Reviver station. We are open from Wednesday to Sunday, from 9 - 5. During the Daylight Saving period, we plan to extend our opening time for the ‘after hours’ gardener. May the seasons ahead be kind and our gardens productive and full of life!

Sue Dee - Editor


So who can keep a secret in Armidale? Obviously not ME! Yes, the rumour is true: yours truly, Editor of New England FOCUS, is getting married to a wonderful man from Inverell named Daryl Germany. My fiance (saying that word feels great, giggle) only has onee condition. That I plan ALL of the wedding, and the only thing he wants to know is where and when.


girl’s wedding is the special day of her life, when she wants to look and feel her most glamorous, when planning for the occasion must be perfect, and she wants to be surrounded by and share the thrill with her best friends in the bridal party. I’ve had pretty much 45 years to think about my wedding day. Yes ... I’m a late bloomer and all the more keen to ensure my special day is a dream come true ... all the more time to build up my expectations. I’ve had this picture-perfect wedding entrenched in my thoughts for years. I was determined that even the planning and the prelude to the event must be special, building wonderful memories from the start. I decided that one of the first steps – sharing the news of my engagement and inviting my best friends to be my supporters on the day – needed to be done in person, to make the moment enjoyable and memorable. But … my girlfriends are scattered across the country: my matron of honour in Moree and one of my three other chosen bridesmaids living far away in Melbourne. I needed somewhere central for us all to meet to share the joy, a glass of champagne, and the delicious anticipation, to gossip, catch up, laugh and to toast the future. Where better than The Observatory Hotel in Port Macquarie, where I’ve holidayed several times in the past – a coastal escape easily accessible by road from New England and the north-west and by air from the major capitals. I wanted nothing but the best. I booked an Observatory penthouse and sent out the call for my besties to join me there. The penthouse is huge and feels as if you’re far away from any other guests, alone in your own private palace in the sky. Most of all, it looks out over Port’s main beach and rolling surf – the view to the ocean’s far horizon a motif for the boundless future ahead for me and my fiance and our lifetime together. I wanted to reward my friends for travelling out

of their way to meet me and to make the time an It wasn’t all indolence, either. With some rare time off unforgettable occasion in itself. And they were truly work for all of us, we grabbed the hotel’s new mountain blown away when they stepped into the penthouse bikes, fitted with iPod audio-visual tour commentaries – vestibule, greeted with complimentary liqueur chocolates a real novelty and the first on the NSW North Coast. The and a cool glass of wine. I hadn’t yet told them of the iPod device is mounted on the handlebars, and we were true reason for our get-together, but straight away they led by our virtual ‘guides’ around the town’s beaches, knew something special was happening. river and historic sights, landing with our backpacks at That’s what the penthouse is all about: immediately, a pretty picnic spot at Settlement Point, the place where it gives guests a sense of occasion. Whether you choose Port was first settled nearly 200 years ago. it for an engagement, honeymoon, anniversary or The location is known for its dolphins, and we other family event, its sweeping reception laughed as a pod made a salutary ‘swim rooms blending seamlessly via ceilingpast’ just as we arrived – as if they height fold-back glass doors with its were celebrating my engagement an Where better th massive paved ocean-view terrace and coming wedding day too. The Observatoryie, scream ‘let’s celebrate!’ With three My choice to stay in the quar Hotel in Port Macayed well-spaced bedrooms sleeping penthouse was perfect in every where I’ve holid the past six, two bathrooms and an way, and I’m now thinking of in several times ly si ea pe ca expansive fully-appointed kitchen hosting my hen’s night in this es l ta – a coas ad from ro by le ib ss that makes you want to entertain ideal rooftop retreat. Goodness ce ac d the New England anby air from in-suite (and a big supplied knows, it's big enough, and north-west and ls.” barbecue, outdoor dining setting already holds special memories the major capita and sun lounges on the terrace) it’s for me. Then, of course, there’ll bigger than most holiday houses and be our wedding anniversaries to far more private. think of … When I broke my news to my friends’ cries Info: Expensive? Well, no. The North of surprise and delight, we got right down into planning Coast’s most awarded hotel offers special deals and party mode. year-round. Observatory penthouses have all the luxury Dresses, colours, hairstyles and more – we tossed them appeal and all the top-notch appointments. all around among tears of joy and laughter, as the girls Compare the price of 1, 2 and 3 bedroom guest rooms leaped to accept their invitations to join my bridal party, with the penthouse tariff, and it could be the choice for shared my excitement and helped shape my dreams you, for families, up to three couples and other small for the day into reality. We splashed in the heated spa, groups looking for a stylish getaway. See the hotel’s pool and sauna, we danced across to the beach, and video at – check out the photo we spoiled ourselves with facials and treatments in the gallery, take control of the live beach cam, chat free beauty spa. We dined on the terrace and breakfasted in to an online consultant, explore package offers, enter the oceanfront café, shared popcorn and chic flicks on competitions, make an online booking or call 6586 8000 the widescreen TV and worked out to a Wii, collapsing to discuss availability and best rates. in a heap of exhaustion, exhilaration and our bond of FOCUS New England readers are treated to friendship that’s to be affirmed forever with these special complimentary bike hire with iPod audio tour for women agreeing to be by my side on my wedding day. two adults and two children.

new england focus 41

Yaraandoo Eco Lodge & Function Centre. Yaraandoo Respite Retreats are held regularly at Yaraandoo Eco Lodge. The award winning environmental Lodge is located near the World Heritage listed New England National Park and provides Respite Retreats for carers of people with mental illness and their families. For those eligible, the service is fully funded by Yaraandoo and the Federal Government. Yaraandoo Respite Retreats offer four days and three nights of relaxing respite, including accommodation, freshly prepared scrumptious meals and activities. Surrounded by pristine bushland and breathtaking mountain scenery, there are 8 km of graded walking tracks on site, and the Lodge is surrounded by crystal clear rivers and streams. Yaraandoo is the perfect place to relax and rejuvenate, rekindle relationships and be spoiled and pampered.

There are a variety of activities for participants, including: guided bush walks, Yoga and meditation, relaxation techniques, facials and pedicures, massage and pampering, art, music and dance therapy. This service provides the opportunity to meet others experiencing similar challenges, acquire educational tools and gain knowledge on available services. Inspirational guest speakers share their personal experiences on the road to recovery. Educational workshops are tailored to specific groups and include: coping with stress, dealing with challenging behaviours, personal health and wellbeing, reclaiming your relationship, daily living skills/life skills, diet and nutrition, self-esteem and finding your passion.

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Lisa Rowe - Powerful f Compassion p pictured is Lisa Rowe, her husband, Dr. David Rowe, and their children, Ben and Tom.

‘PAMPER DAY’ for CARERS WEEK Carers are the foundation of our aged, disability, community, mental health and palliative care systems. Over 2.6 million unpaid Carers spend on average 40 hours a week providing care. Annually, Carers contribute 1.32 million hours of unpaid care, estimated at $6.5 billion. To celebrate Carers Week in Armidale, three local organisations are hosting a ‘Pamper Day’ especially for local Carers. Your hosts are Armidale Dumaresq Council, New England Medicare Local and Alzheimer’s Australia NSW and integratedliving Australia Limited. Armidale Dumaresq Council provides support and education to Carers and facilitates a monthly Carer’s Support Group in the Jacaranda Room of Kent and Hughes House, 2 - 4 pm, on the second Tuesday of each month. New England Medicare Local and Alzheimer’s Australia NSW organise a Dementia-specific Carer Support Group, held monthly on the fourth Tuesday, alternating between lunchtime and evening meetings in Armidale. This group provides information, support and education. integratedliving Australia Ltd is an innovative, not-for-profit community business operating across regional and rural New South Wales. integratedliving delivers quality aged care and respite services at your home. To recognise the contribution of local carers, Armidale Dumaresq Council, New England Medicare Local and intergratedliving Australia are hosting a ‘PAMPER DAY’ for CARERS WEEK.

Throughout my career, I always incorporated massage where I could into my role as a nurse, and this then generated an interest which then became a passion, as I was amazed how powerful compassionate touch was. I completed my first training in massage in the U.K. 20 years ago and have been building on it ever since, with courses in Lymphatic Drainage, Complex Lymphoedema Management, Aromatherapy Massage, and Palliative Care Massage. Four years ago, I began my journey with Oncology Massage and over the following couple of years I completed module 1 and 2 of a 4 module training programme.During this time, I also upgraded to the Australian Diploma of Remedial Massage, so that my clients were able to obtain a refund from their health insurance. Finally this year, I completed modules 3 and 4 of my Oncology Massage training. The training was held at the Austin Hospital in Melbourne, which is a large public hospital in Melbourne. The Austin is also home to the state of the art Olivia Newton John Wellness centre, where the approach to the treatment of cancer integrates that of advanced medical care with that of evidence based complimentary therapies, to hopefully provide the best outcome for patients possible. The training we received for modules 3 and 4 enables us to provide massage therapy within the Radiology Oncology Department, Day Infusion Wards (chemo infusion) and Oncology Wards. I felt very privileged and humbled to be able to provide Oncology Massage within this setting. Oncology Massage Training is endorsed by Petrea King ‘Quest for Life’, The Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA) and supported by the Cancer Council of NSW.

Thinking Conveyancing with Legal Minds


CONVEYANCING From 1 October 2012, the First Home Owner Grant Scheme (FHOG) will only apply to the purchase or building of new homes. The $7,000 First Home Owner Grant no longer applies to any transaction dated after 1 October 2012. The scheme is replaced with the new First Home Owner Grant (New Homes) (FHOGNH). The new scheme entitles eligible first home buyers to apply for a grant of $15,000 to purchase or build a new home on or after 1 October 2012. The $15,000 grant, however, is only available until the end of 2013, when it will be reduced to $10,000 from 1 January 2014. The grant is only available for the purchase or building of a new home up to a capped value of $650,000. A purchaser buying or building a new home above the cap rate will not be eligible for the new grant. In addition to the FHOGNH, first home buyers may be entitled to the First Home Plus scheme, which provides stamp duty exemptions or concessions on transfer duty for people who are buying their first home in NSW. This includes buying vacant land on which you intend to build your first home. The First Home Plus Scheme provides eligible purchasers with exemptions on transfer duty on homes valued up to $500,000 and concessions on duty for homes valued between $500,000 and $600,000. Eligible purchasers buying a vacant block of residential land to build their home on will pay no duty on vacant land valued up to $300,000 and will receive concessions on duty for vacant land valued between $300,000 and $450,000. With mortgages, an advance made to natural persons for the purpose of buying or building their home, or buying vacant residential land, is not liable to duty. This applies irrespective of the amount of money borrowed and is not capped. Further information can be found at the Office of State Revenue web site at http://www.osr. Before buying a new home, there are a few matters that a prudent purchaser should consider: • Receive advice as to whether you (and if applicable your joint purchaser or tenant in common) are entitled to the First Home Owner Grant (New Home) Scheme and related benefits. • Decide if you want to purchase the property in your sole name, jointly, or as tenants in common. • Ensure that you have sufficient funds to cover the deposit (usually 10% of the purchase price) to exchange contracts or discuss options with

your financial institution or mortgage broker if a deposit bond is required. • Consider seeking advice from your accountant and /or a financial planner as to your capacity to service any mortgage. • Discuss mortgage options with your preferred financial institution or a mortgage broker. Discuss the content of the loan offer and your mortgage documents with your solicitor or conveyancer, to understand the extent of your liability. • Develop a relationship with our local real estate agents, who will be able to keep you in mind if the type of property you are looking for comes their way. • Ensure that you make provision in your budget to insure the home that you buy after exchange of contracts. • Before exchanging contracts, consider the advantage of having an independent building and pest report on the home. This will give you a clear understanding of any improvements you may need to request of the Vendor before proceeding to purchase, or that you may need to carry out after you have purchased your first home. In certain cases, you may also need to consider obtaining a survey of the land and/ or copy of Building certificate if improvements have been made to the home by the Vendor, or perhaps an inspection of the local Council file. • If purchasing a strata unit, a strata report should be considered in addition to other certificates that your solicitor may suggest you obtain. • Your solicitor will assist you in understanding general matters, including local environment issues, zoning, covenants, development consents, restrictions on use, heritage and make necessary searches to check that the named Vendor is entitled to sell the property to you. Whether you are a seasoned investor or buying your first home, engaging a solicitor to carry out and oversee the conveyancing of your purchase or sale is an important consideration. Take advantage of receiving local professional legal advice to assist you in making your decision, keeping you informed and ensuring that your transaction can take place without confusion or unnecessary delay. Christopher K C Serow Principal, Solicitor Director, Notary Public, Migration Agent MARN 0854319 Sara M Abboud, Solicitor Louise McPhie JP Conveyancing & Administrative Services Officer new england focus 43


Spring feature news

Total Maintenance Solutions! Spring is here, and it’s time to think lawn, garden and home maintenance. A little work now can bring a lot of reward. Lawn Maintenance: soil aeration, broadleaf control, fertiliser application, top dressing and reseeding where required will improve the quality of your lawn and make outdoor living much more enjoyable. Cutting your lawn leaving it a little longer in height is beneficial, as it crowds out weeds and it won’t burn off as easily in the hot, dry periods. Garden Maintenance: weed control, fertilising and mulching carried out early in the season can save time and effort later. Even consider installing a basic watering system. For your efforts, your plants will be happier, healthier and thank you with bountiful blooms or crops. Home Maintenance: gutter and flue cleaning, for example, are best done regularly for the protection of your investment – not just when a problem is noticed. Repairs carried out around your home, like fixing the gate that won’t latch, that sticking door, those loose decking boards, the fly screens that need re-gauzing, all make for a more relaxed summer. So get busy, or call us at LGHM. Photo: front L to R – Adrienne, Shane, Sam, Mick. Back L to R – Darren, Matthew, Elliott, Phil.

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Sustainable Timber 2 U! When and why did you open a timber yard in Armidale? I have been a landholder in Ebor since 1950. Two years ago, I found 3,000 acres in Clouds Creek full of magnificent hard woods. This property has the finest trees, including Tallowwood, Brush Box, Blue Gum, Stringy Bark, White Gum and Forest Oak. All of my life I have been into timber, and I am pleased to be supplying to residents across New England. How do you harvest the wood? I use contractors, and the wood is trucked into my depot at Acacia Park in Armidale. All woods are sawn, kiln dried and then dressed if required. What’s popular? There is always a variation of demand, but Spotted Gum seems to be popular at the moment. I buy in other species, such as Blackbutt and Red Ironbark. How are you sustaining your 3,000 acres? I am logging sustainably. I leave trees that are 40 cm in diameter for re growth.


Spring feature news Family owned and operated. Exfoliate – Be Ready for Summer! ‘Christmas with a Difference’ Welcome to Armidale’s newest shop in the Centre Mall, ‘Christmas with a Difference’, opening Tuesday 2 October. Jane Hannon and her team are very excited to introduce you to some beautiful new products. You will be delighted by the exclusive Katherine’s Collection range of character dolls and fairies. There is an endless supply of Christmas decorations from traditional, Australiana and modern in exciting colours. Bon Homewares from Carrol Boyes and Magpie will make the perfect gift for that someone special. Jane has travelled far and wide sourcing unique scarves, fashion jewellery, string lighting, flameless scented candles, fabulous Bon Bons and much, much more. Christmas is a special time of year, where after a busy year we can plan a celebration with family and friends and be thankful for all the good in our lives. ‘Christmas with a Difference’ is designed for us to plan early, start decorating and begin our gift shopping with colour and fun in mind – to remind us why this time of year is so special.

Winter’s over ... it’s time to bare a bit more skin! Horrified at the state of your ‘snake skin’ legs and flaky arms? The best way to negate these wintery effects is to exfoliate and moisturise regularly! Every 3 – 4 weeks, our skin replaces damaged and tired out skin cells with bright new ones! But it doesn’t always get rid of dead skin cell build-ups on the surface ... the flaky bits and white lines ... they definitely need to go! First step is to exfoliate, and the second step is to use a good moisturiser. For your face – our gentle face exfoliator is exactly that ... gentle. Tiny natural spheres of jojoba beads roll over your skin to buff away dead skin cells, leaving your skin silky smooth and ready to absorb moisturiser. Follow with dream cream or argan gold for radiant skin. For your body, Spa Salt Scrub – Lemon Myrtle will exfoliate and invigorate your skin. Also Body Exfoliator – Oil Free is highly effective. Follow with Body Smoother moisturiser. Armidale Stockists: Chique Hair Face Body, Brown Street; Food For Thought, Beardy St Mall; Angelic Beauty, Uralla (elly b body products only).

*October Special Offer

Since taking over Armidale Realty 10 months ago, there have been plenty of highs and lows in the real estate industry. Armidale Realty covers a wide area, focusing on rural properties in the New England, hobby farms and residential sales in Armidale. With the market being somewhat slow, we have been involved in close to $18 million in real estate sales in the past 10 months. Our business is starting to grow, with Peter Reid joining us in the Walcha Area. Peter will be focusing on rural property sales and brings with him a wealth of knowledge about the industry, having bought and sold properties himself. Lou Doran has also joined our team in the Armidale office and will be focusing on residential and small acreage. Lou is very approachable and has the right manner to succeed in this industry. We understand the process of buying and selling real estate can be very exciting – that’s why we pay great attention to the vendor and the purchasers’ needs, so that both parties can enjoy an easy transaction. Please feel free to come in and see Fred and Donna Keeping at 161 Beardy St and have a confidential free chat.

*1 – 31 Oct, 2012

Purchase $80 + of elly b products & receive a FREE essential eye cream (value $40)

OFCcertified organic Qrestores & regenerates Qhealthier skin Qpremium quality, naturally active Q / 02 6778 3884 *Participating Shops // Food for Thought, Beardy St Mall // Chique Hair Face & Body, Brown St Armidale new england focus 45


Spring feature news

When You Should See a Chiropractor?

Rotary and Lynda Lynch I joined Armidale Central Rotary about three years ago, as I was aware of all the good work they did for others. I had a particular interest in the humanitarian service side due to my work for the School of St Jude in Tanzania, Africa. Being involved in Rotary has allowed me to get involved in many local projects benefiting others. It has also introduced me to many good people offering all different skills and knowledge, that blend in together to get projects and tasks done. Rotary members have a great time socially, and regularly, and I encourage anyone to consider giving it a try. Rotarians are very welcoming people. Lynda Lynch. 0413 084 567.

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A common question asked by many patients. Examples include: When you’re ill or in pain – Chiropractic optimises your body’s natural healing ability. When you have been in an accident of any kind, no matter how minor. When you’re competing in sports – professional and Olympic athletes perform better under Chiropractic care. You and your children will too. When you’re pregnant – for a more comfortable pregnancy, labour and delivery, so childbirth will be as natural as possible. When you’re a baby – learning to crawl and walk means falling sometimes too. When you’re under stress – Chiropractic is great for relaxation. When you’re a student – Chiropractic helps with concentration levels. Why wait until you have a problem? If you want to stay healthy, get your spine checked today! Common problems people seek Chiropractic care for include: • Neck pain • Headaches/Migraines • Low back pain • Sciatica • Sports overuse injuries • Hip, knee and foot problems • Shoulder tendonitis, Tennis/Golfers Elbow • Carpal Tunnel • Kids: visual/auditory processing difficulties, ADHD, Colic. If you’rewondering if Chiropractic can help your current complaint, please enquire today. It is most likely we have successfully cared for your condition many times before.

Forty Winks — get a Better Bed Each month Paul Jury from Forty Winks Armidale will help us with advice when choosing the right bed, so we can reap the benefits of a good sleep! Good sleep ... Great Life! Forty Winks, Armidale’s newest bedding specialist, is proud to release the latest range of back care beds from King Koil. Sharing a desire to play an active role in promoting healthy sleep, King Koil has partnered with the International Chiropractors Association, working cooperatively to engineer sleep systems for enhanced posture and sleep quality. The result is a stylish looking bedding range, with your back and health in mind. The Forty Winks range of King Koil mattresses feature a collection of support systems designed to offer zoned support to suit every budget, including the premium Chiro Flex series, featuring the latest in Reflex Coil spring technology. Enhancing your comfort are some of the world’s most advanced comfort materials: Evofoam and AeroComfort quilt technology have been carefully selected for their pressure relief, performance and breathability, ensuring a comfortable and supportive night’s sleep. Available in Firm, Medium or Plush Feels.

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Spring feature news

Kylie Mitchell Winner at the 2012 Building Designers Association NSW Kylie Mitchell drops us a line to tell us how she feels about winning several awards at the Building Designers NSW Designs Awards. What type of interest has Art House One received since we interviewed you on its completeion? Art House One has featured in 2 books – one of them international – and in a number of magazines, including the recent release of Grand Designs and in Award Winning Design. I’ve even been asked to go to Brisbane as a quest speaker at Design Build Expo to talk about how Art House one came about. What huge award did you recently win? I was recently fortunate enough to received a number of awards at the Building Designers NSW Designs awards night. All of these were for Art House One. The house received first place for Best New Residential Building under 250 sqm, it received a Commendation for Residential Interiors and was a finalist in Sustainable Buildings. The top award though, was the Paul Dass Memorial Award for Design Excellence; this is the second top award offered in the state for design excellence and services to the design industry the Building Designers Association can offer. Describe how you felt when your name was called out at the awards? I was absolutely thrilled and completely humbled! The awards dinner was held at Dolton House on Sydney Harbour, and the venue was absolutely beautiful! It was just so lovely to be a part of it all, even before the awards ceremony began. When my name was called out for the first award, I was so excited! It’s a great honour to have your design named one of the best in the state. When I then received the commendation for Residential Interiors and was

named as a finalist in the Sustainable Housing category, it was such a great honour! I was amazed! I was so pleased that I had received such recognition, that when I was then named the Paul Dass Memorial Award winner, I was lost for words! I had no idea that our little house would create such a stir and receive such attention. I feel blessed. Other than yourself, who do you believe has contributed towards your success? First of all, my husband, Dean Fleming – without his faith in me and in my ability to create us a home, this would not have been possible. Next would be the builder Gary Sillitoe and his wonderful colleagues. These guys worked hard on an unusual building and despite some possible early doubts as to my design vision, they did a great job. I’d also like to thank the Armidale Dumersq Council for supporting the project; they were very positive about it. And of course, my kids always contribute to my success, with their constant faith and humour!

new england focus


Ducats Earthmoving. Ducats Earthmoving has been operating in Armidale for over 37 years. The company supplies ready mixed concrete, a concrete pump, gravel, sands, bitumen, firewood and gardening supplies. We are also an earthmoving business providing a wide range of equipment and undertaking small to medium contracts. Now that spring has finally arrived, we all feel good about getting outdoors and preparing our yards, playgrounds, or completing that unfinished job so we can enjoy the warmer months out doors. Ducats is proud to have one of the largest ranges of landscaping goods. Our focus is to provide great customer service and quality materials at competitive prices to both our domestic and trade clientele. Allan Frost

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(Frosty) is in charge of this part of the business and has worked with Ducats for over 23 years. Whether it is soils, mulches, gravels, pebbles, retaining walls, pavers, timber, loam, manures, wood-chip, aggregates, decorative pebbles and more, Frosty is sure to help you with your landscaping needs. Our staff members are the reason our company has been so successful. They are friendly and well trained in product knowledge, to ensure that your experience at Ducats is an enjoyable one. Our products are clearly marked with prices and facts you need to know. We supply price lists and product brochures, to take the guess work out of your next landscaping project. We invite you to see and feel the difference at Ducats.

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2012 PREMIERS Congratulations to the 2012 Premiers, The UNE ine Rugby Barbarians. Sam Piddington drops us a line eir to discuss their triumph and to remind us of their theme, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Be Barbaric; Become a Barbarianâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;.

Photography by Anthony Wood. Pho

2011 really kicked off the this momentum intol win. A na fi d an gr s â&#x20AC;&#x2122; ar ye se and strong player ba p saw hi solid sponsors ahead the Baa Baas go ds. â&#x20AC;? in leaps and boun



he Baa Baas started in 2005. Give us a brief rundown of your first six seasons? 2005 saw the boys field a team in second grade in their inaugural year, and making the grand final was a great result. 2006 was the first year the Baa Baas played in first grade, and these were the years the true Barbariansâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; spirit was born â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 100 plus score lines were a regular occurrence, but they turned up every week, never forfeiting. Fifteen blokes would often travel to Scone to play 2 full games of Rugby. 2008 saw an influx of players and for the first time, we won a game in 1st grade.

We made the finals that year, but we were knocked out in the minor semi. Second grade also had a strong year, making the finals, only to be beaten in the minor semi. After a strong off season, we were heading into the 2009 season with some confidence. We won our first round game, but that was the last time we tasted victory. Not only were 1st grade getting belted, 2nd grade had some tough days too. On paper, 2010 wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t great on the field, but this was the year things happened off. Rising player and supporter numbers, an increase in sponsorship and a trip out into the wild were all contributing factors. We didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t

win a game in 1st grade, but we held eventual premiers, Armidale, nil all until the 60th min, and 3rd grade missed out by one game on making the GF. 2011 really kicked off the momentum into this yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s grand final win. A strong player base and solid sponsorship saw the Baa Baas go ahead in leaps and bounds. Our first win in 2 years came about in May against Guyra, which led to wins against Robb and grand finalists Armidale, but the season came to an end

in the preliminary final against the Blues. 3rd grade also had a strong year, qualifying for the finals. After a close loss in the major semi, they headed to a knock out final against the Blues. A last minute try to Blake Fishburn secured a memorable victory, which put them in the grand final against Albies. The favourites were too good on the day, but our 3rd grade boys never gave up. It was a good year for the club: 3rd in first grade and 2nd in third grade. It put us in great shape for 2012.

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50 new england focus.


20 12 P R E M I E R S After Af a massive i off ff season that saw a huge soil, but lifting the Sawyer Shield for the first increase in player numbers, it was decided time for the Baa Baas is something I’ll cherish that for the first time the Barbarians would forever. nominate 3 grades. A huge amount of time Who and what do you think contributed and effort were put in by Jarrod Carter, Dan to you finally winning a premiership? Dooner and the committee to secure It’s been building for 8 years, but more sponsorship dollars and a certainly people like Jarrod bigger playing roster. Without Carter and Warren Pearce, the support of our new who have been involved We’ll continue major sponsor, Harley with the club pretty as rd ha to work d an e Payne from the St Kilda much since day dot. ov pr im to a club le to get Hotel, we would still Dan Dooner brought encourage peop gby be without our home a very professional involved with Ru and. in the New Engl s as a ground, Alcatraz. attitude to the club as We see ourselvebut in We secured the use head coach. Belinda , w no good club t to be an w e of the field through Pilgrim and the canteen w re tu fu the t club.” the help of Rob Taber ladies are always a great known as a grea and the committee of the help. Nick Dooner and all Showground trust, and we are past and present committee hoping this can be home to Conan members have all added. Eris and the boys well into the future. Dooner and Ron Piddington have The Baa Baas were unstoppable in 2012; always been great supporters of the Baa Baas. 1st grade only lost their round 1 game and Club spirit isn’t something that comes around are undefeated on Alcatraz. They lifted the overnight, and we always knew if the off field inaugural InvestBlue shield against the Blues stuff worked, the on field would come. and of course, it culminated in being awarded Given this opportunity to thank your minor and major premiers. Second grade was a supporters, what would you like to say? force to be reckoned with, beating all the sides Our sponsors are the people who make in the competition, but unfortunately they it possible for you and I to play, observe were knocked out in their semi final against and enjoy the great game of Rugby. Please eventual winners, Robb. Third grade finished patronise these businesses whenever possible second on the table after a consistent season and let them know that you also support ... and were able to win their semi final, but they ‘The Mighty Baa Baas’. were outplayed by Guyra in the grand final. Plans for next season? 2012 will be a year remembered by all We’ll continue to work hard as a club to Barbarian supporters for many different improve and encourage people to get involved reasons. Maybe it’s the time we won 3 grades with Rugby in the New England. We see on Alcatraz against Robb, or maybe when we ourselves as a good club now, but in the future beat Albies for the first time ever, or even the we want to be known as a great club. first time we beat the Blues on their home ‘Be Barbaric; Become a Barbarian’.

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BE PART OF We talk to James Turnell at Armidale Dumaresq Council Waste Management Facility. e hear that the Armidale Waste Management Facility is state of the art ... Armidale Dumaresq Councilâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Waste Services are committed to providing the community with waste services that maximise resource recovery and minimise waste to landfill. Our Waste Management Facility (WMF) is recognised as being one of the best in our region. We often get visitors who come from much larger local government areas who comment on the quality of the facility and the comprehensive recycling options available.


On top of traditional kerbside recycling that is sorted by hand at the Materials Recovery Facility (MRF), residents can also sort the waste they bring to the facility and reduce waste to landfill. Currently there are drop off points for: ferrous & non-ferrous metals, timber, hard plastics, polystyrene, batteries, motor & cooking oil, paints & chemicals, fluorescent lighting, concrete & bricks, garden/food waste, computers, televisions, and working 2nd hand goods. What is Waste Servicesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; overall waste strategy?

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Our philosophy or strategy is that if a market exists for a recycled product, then all attempts are made to capture that waste stream by providing dedicated drop off points or storage containers/bins. Waste to landfill is the absolute last option, and we promote the three Rs: Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle. Often the challenge is aggregating enough of a recyclable product to make it cost effective to transport to a market. Re-processors of recyclables are usually located a significant distance from Armidale, mostly in Sydney and Brisbane. Fortunately, many of our larger waste streams can be processed at the WMF and sold locally, including mulch, crushed concrete and bricks, and soon our City to Soil compost. Tell us about the City to Soil project ... Since the beginning of February 2012, residents has been offered a full organics collection service called City to Soil. Residents are issued a kitchen caddie and compostable bags to collect their food waste, which is then placed in their 240 L wheelie bin along with garden green waste. The mix of food and garden waste is then composted at the WMF and will soon be

available for sale to local growers and gardeners. Waste Services has been delighted at the uptake of City to Soil and the low level of plastic contamination in the organic collections, which in turn enables us to make lovely, rich compost. Our initial test results have shown that the resulting compost meets all relevant standards and when applied to gardens, will improve overall soil fertility. Based on current volumes, we anticipate that City to Soil will divert 2,300 tonnes of organic waste away from landfill per annum. How is the Resource Recovery Shop (Tip Shop) going? The Resource Recovery Shop, commonly referred to as the Tip Shop, is going very well and enables 2nd hand goods to find a new home. Reusing goods not only

saves resources, but also the energy that goes into making them. The shop has also been separating any valuable metals from goods that canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t be sold, further limiting waste sent to landfill. Our intention is to expand the Resource Recovery Shop and provide a dedicated car park, so that customers can visit the shop without having to enter the WMF via the gatehouse. How can residents get more information regarding recycling? A recently developed Waste Services Guide has been distributed to the community, which should answer most questions, and additional copies are available upon request. Please feel free to contact Council if you have further questions or concerns on 6770 3600 or email:


Recycling There are two ways to recycle in Uralla Shire. Certain items can be recycled through the kerbside collection; other items can be dropped off at the Shire recycling collection points. he following items can be put into your yellow recycling bin: • Glass bottles and jars • Aluminium cans • Aluminium foil • Newspapers • magazines • Office paper •Envelopes without a window • Envelopes with a window • Phone books • Pizza boxes (clean) • Egg cartons • Cardboard • Steel food cans • Steel paint cans (empty) • Milk cartons • Juice cartons • Plastics marked with 1PET, 2 HDPE, 3 V, 5 PP

shredded paper • All plasticss – including plastic ent tubes, CFLS bags • Light bulbs (fluorescent W hi and incandescent light bulbs)) • EE-Waste – this includes printers, computers, TVs, microwaves and all electrical items • Batteries – all types – household and car batteries • Fridges – must be degassed • Scrap metal – drums, roofing iron, fencing, all things metal • Oil – household cooking oil • Oil – used machinery oil and their containers • Mobile telephones

It is important that items placed in the recycling bin are clean.

Old wares – furniture, books, toys, building supplies. These items can be resold in the Uralla Landfill Op-Shop.


For residents in Kentucky, there is a recycling station located in Dorlie Lane, where items that would otherwise go in the kerbside collection can be deposited. Items that you can drop off for recycling at the Uralla and Bundarra Landfills and Recycling Facilities: • Glass • Paper and cardboard – including

What is green waste? Green waste for Uralla Shire is garden organic waste. It is important that garden organic waste is free of any other material, like food, plastics and paper. It is also important that noxious weeds are not included in garden organic waste. Garden organic waste is mulched and then available for sale at the

Uralla and d Bundarra B Bun und darraa Landfi darr Landfi La ndfill Facilities. nd FFaacilities. ac

metal and garden organic waste!

Garden organic waste includes: • leaves • grass clippings • branches • hay • flowers • sawdust • woodchips • bark

There is a charge for residents who do not sort their recycling from their waste.

The kerbside garden organic waste collection service is an optional service available to Uralla urban residents. If you would like further information about this service, please contact the Uralla Shire office on 6778 6300.

For residents in Kentucky, there ion re is a cycling stat Lane, lie or D located in would where items thatthe in go e otherwis ion, can kerbside collect ” d. te be deposi

What does is cost to deposit recycling at the Uralla facilities? For Uralla Shire residents, to drop off sorted and clean recycling, it is FREE. It is FREE for Uralla Shire Residents to drop of

There is a charge for non-residents depositing items to the recycling and waste collection areas. There is a charge for residents who drop off TV and CRT screens – $10 per item. Uralla Shire will not accept e-waste from non-shire residents or businesses.

What about household batteries? Household battery recycling in the purple bins is available at: • Uralla Recycling Centre • Uralla Post Office • Bundarra Landfill • Kentucky General Store • Invergowrie General Store.

new england focus 53

Fitzroy motors is the oldest Mazda dealership in NSW – from 1967 – and its Honda dealership dates back to 1969.

A sterling reputation. Fitzroy motors are one of the most successful car dealerships on the Coffs Coast, with a sterling reputation and second to none customer service. General Manager Rob Partridge has been in the business for 46 years and has an eye for detail and an understanding for running his own car dealership. Rob attributes a lot of his success to the cars his dealership stocks. “Honda and Mazda always rate highly, because they are reliable and trouble free vehicles.” However, the cars themselves cannot take full credit for the company’s prosperity. The real driving force behind Fitzroy motors is the dedicated team of sales consultants, service technicians, administrative staff and detailers. All staff are trained to help buyers look for quality, style and safety, and they always strive

to meet any customers’ needs and demands. According to Rob Partridge: “In all, Fitzroy Motors’ success reflects the commitment and dedication of its well deserving staff.” This is the driving key for a successful company. Keeping staff trained, happy and looked after determines the dollar result at the end of the day, year, and month. If there’s a passion for product, then customers find they get the best result – because staff know exactly what to offer. Fitzroy Motors is located in Grafton Street, directly across from The Coast Hotel. It has been on the same site for more than 65 years – it was Foote’s Garage when Ces Vost bought the business in 1946 and later bought by the Partridge family in 1963. Fitzroy Motors is the oldest Mazda dealership in NSW – from 1967 – and its Honda dealership dates back to 1969.


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We want people to want to be here – to come here because it’s a really special place to live.

Northern Inland Regional Waste Northern Inland Regional Waste’s (NIRW) chemical clean-out campaign has removed over 17,800 kg of potentially harmful chemicals from the region.

Mr Beckett. “Every kilo collected is a kilo of hazardous, or potentially hazardous, waste prevented from ending up in our environment.”

The collected amount is a substantial increase from last year’s figure of just under 15,800 kg.

The yearly collection, held in conjunction with the NSW Environment Protection Authority, allows residents to bring their household and farm chemicals to designated drop-off centres at no charge. This year, the chemical collection was held at 13 sites across the region, on set dates during July and August.

NIRW Executive Officer and Manager, Waste Services for Tamworth Regional Council, Jon Beckett, says that the increase shows that householders are becoming more aware of the need to dispose of chemicals correctly. “The results of this year’s collection show that the community really understands the need for safe disposal of chemicals,” said

The highest collected chemicals this year were water-based paints, general pesticides and flammable liquids, such as petrol and kerosene.

RFBI thanks its carers and staff Employees are the heart and soul of any business or organisation. Without them, nothing would get done. RFBI know that appreciating their staff and what they bring to the workplace is of utmost importance for morale and the continued success of the organisation.

who live at Ken Thompson Lodge, and their family members, do a great job of that! But as an employer, it’s even more important. Our staff are everything – not only the handson carers, but everyone else who works in the facility, whether it be hotel services or maintenance staff.

RFBI is most thankful to its employees, who demonstrate a passion and a zest to serve the resident and just for life in general. At Ken Thompson Lodge, compassion and customer service are highly appreciated qualities of our staff. The staff have a direct effect on the quality of life for the residents, which makes it extremely important to hire the right people and then to recognise them and show them how much they are appreciated. The residents

Ken Thompson Lodge is a special place to live and work. That’s what we’re about, creating and sustaining. We want people to want to be here – to come here because it’s a really special place to live, and then we want people to want to come here to work, because it’s a really special place to work. To show appreciation to our employees who help create this special place, RFBI will be having a staff appreciation celebration in October.

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Andrew Williams of Adda Constructions talks to FOCUS about his beautiful home for sale at 12 Fittler Road, Armidale. A

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DDA Constructions was formed in 2008. After completing his apprenticeship with a local building company, followed by two additional years of study, Andrew Williams has a desire to deliver to Armidale and district clients a home that is more than project built and saw the need for homes to be more flexible, to cater for the ever changing family of today. Andrew is committed to working as a team with his clients to create the

best possible outcome, informing them of new and innovative ways of building and to ultimately have a reputation of consistently delivering an exceptional product with personal service. ADDA Constructions prides itself on superior quality construction from start to finish, delivering to the customer an exceptional product with specialised service. We achieve this by employing only the very best in local sub-contractors and tradesmen. continued over

A D DA C o n s t r u c t i o n s


1 2 F I T T L E R R O A D , N O W AVA I L A B L E F O R S A L E . his property has set the standard for contemporary design and living; it consists of 330 square metres, and some of the features are listed below. Large north facing open plan living takes full advantage of the northern aspect, with endless amounts of sun and uninterrupted views. Off the living area is a children’s nook or formal living area. These areas are enhanced by a stunning solid timber, Sydney Blue Gum, tongue and groove floorboards. The floor has been secret nailed, sanded and finished with a hard wearing polyurethane full gloss by Richard Turner of Beverly Floor Sanding, Armidale. The home features a stunning three tone custom built kitchen with 2 pack finish, Caesarstone benchtops with soft closing drawers and doors; matching top of the range SMEG stainless steel appliances include a freestanding 6 burner gas cook top with Teppanyaki hotplate, electric 900 mm oven, dishwasher, microwave oven and rangehood. This was crafted and installed by Anthony Kil-


len of Killen Furniture, Armidale. Other features include: • Outdoor entertaining area facing north, with frameless glass balustrade enhancing the spectacular view. • Four large bedrooms, all with built-ins, plus a dedicated theatre room or study. • Master suite comprises stunning views facing north, with walk in robes and ensuite featuring his and hers custom built vanity with Caesarstone benchtops and two pack soft closing doors, also crafted and installed by Killen Furniture, superior Mizu tapware and ceiling mounted large, square showerhead. • Main bathroom consists of stone benchtop, large bath, semi frameless shower screen, superior quality Mizu tapware and ceiling mounted large, square showerhead. • Blinds throughout the home. • LED downlights. • Zoneable Daikin central air conditioning and heating. • Spacious laundry with stone benchtop, soft close doors and external access to back yard.

“ This homey would suit ang for family lookinof the a quality top new range, brandto home ready move into. ”

• Double 6 x 6 m garage with internal access and remote control door. • Large fully fenced landscaped yard, with massive storage room underneath the home. This home is located in a new estate north of Armidale, approximately 3 km from the post office; it’s close to parklands and has a beautiful rural outlook to the north and east. Schools and the University of New England are in close proximity. This home would suit any family looking for a quality top of the range, brand new home ready to move into. I thought very carefully about making the home as flexible as possible to suit many families’ needs, whether the children are very young, teenagers or even an elderly parent living in the same home – for example, an open floor plan, but also having some separate areas for privacy, larger than

normal master bedroom, separate from the other bedrooms, with the luxury of his and hers separate wardrobe space, as well as vanity areas. The design is exciting and streamlined and takes into account the busy lives of the modern day family, who don’t wish to be burdened with extensive cleaning, maintenance and gardening.

the plug! Enquiries welcome. Contact ADDA Constructions: call Andrew Williams 0401 178 783 or David Williams 0427 755 237 or email For sale enquiries, contact Ben Saxby 0413 279 884 or Jeremy Creagan 0401 508 801.

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T OYO TA During the last week, I was privileged to be able to test drive the new Toyota Prius C Hybrid Vehicle. I was quite excited when I received the car, because I had never driven a vehicle that was powered by both electricity and petrol.


or those like me who had no idea of how a Hybrid car works, it is rather simple. The Prius C is powered by Hybrid Synergy Drive. Starting off, the electric motor is utilised and when you require full acceleration, power is also supplied by the petrol engine. During deceleration and braking, the electric engine functions like a generator and recharges the battery. When stationary, the petrol engine phases out and the electric engine is relied upon. You only add petrol to this car, and there is no requirement to plug the vehicle into an electricity source.

compact, this allowed for more in-cabin room to become available.

I was very impressed with the overall sporty look of the car. The rear spoiler and 15 inch alloy wheels enhanced the ultra modern body shape. The Prius C had a keyless entry and a press button start.

I then started the vehicle, and it was quite essing surreal; the quietness had me second guessing whether the car had actually started. It took a little getting used to, but this was modern ashboard technology working at its finest. The dashboard set up was rather impressive, and I would describe it as somewhat futuristic. The digital speedometer was accompanied by a raft of information, such as eco-score and eco-saving, up to date fuel consumption and temperature information. This was enhanced by a 3.5 inch screen, which included a reversing camera. The Prius C allowed me to determine which driving mode to travel around with. I utilised the ‘EV’ mode, which is utilising the electric motor only, when driving short distances. I utilised either the ‘Normal’ mode or ‘ECO’ for all other purposes.

Once in the vehicle, I noticed the ultra modern finish and dash set up. There was surprisingly plenty of leg room in the front and rear sections. As the engine compartment is rather

The safety features of this vehicle are similar and typical of the new cars Toyota is producing. It comes with seven airbags, accompanied by a front and side collision structure. Electronic

58 new england focus.

Brak Brakeforce Distribution, Anti-Skid Braking System, Brake-Assist and Vehicle Stability Control all contribute to making this vehicle one of the safest on the market, which really impressed me.

“The in-car media system was utilised to the max ! The Prius C allowed me to utilise my iPod for music and hands-free Bluetooth for my mobile phone.” The voice control was a gimmick for the kids, but I found it very helpful and useful. I was also impressed by the ability for me to control the media system by also utilising the controls on the steering wheel. I found this very convenient. This car markets itself on being environmentally friendly and being a big saver for the family

budget, and I can see why. I used very little petrol during my test period, and Toyota advises that it uses approximately 3.9 litres of petrol per 100 kilometres. This is totally amazing and about four times less fuel than the current vehicle I own. Combine this with Toyota’s fixed price servicing, and this could save the average family $1,000s per year. It also results in less harmful emissions being released, which is a real positive in this day and age. Speak to the New England Toyota team, as they can tailor an awesome financial deal for you. I highly recommend this vehicle for all purposes, both business and private, and in particular, those wanting a great looking and reliable car that helps beat the current everyday spiralling cost of living.

G.J. Gardner Homes

We catch up with Kate and Chris Thornton from G.J. Gardner Homes Armidale, who have been very busy in more ways than one! ell us about the new edition to the Thornton family? On 17 July 2012, we welcomed our little boy, Darcy William Thornton, into our family.


To our surprise, after losing our little baby boy Ethan four and a half years ago, we never expected that we would have another child, so Darcy is our very special miracle baby and very much loved also by his older brothers and sister. How do you keep everything balanced with four young children and a business to run? Not sure if balance is a word we would use in our very busy lifestyle, as it can sometimes be a constant challenge to juggle our business along with our young family. At the end of the day, we wouldn’t have it any other way, as both are quite rewarding and

very much part of our foundations we strive for and that make us who we are. The company has also been busy; what were the recent awards you’ve won? Over the past couple of months, along with having a new baby, we have travelled to Ballina, Coffs Harbour and Sydney to attend different functions and been successful in winning at each one. Most successful was in Sydney at Darling Harbour on 8 September 2012; we won Best Contract house up to $500K at the Master Builders Association Excellence in Housing Awards, hosted by Johanna Griggs from Better Homes and Gardens and cricketer Stuart MacGill. This was a fantastic result, and we are very proud, as we were competing against mainly Sydney builders; only a couple of builders from our country areas made it

through to the State Awards. Through the Master Builders Regional Area Awards on 30 July 2012 held at Ballina, we picked up a Merit Award in our regional area for Best Home Constructed up to $500K, which was up against the builder who took out Builder of the Year. On 4 August, we attended the Housing Industry Association Awards at Coffs Harbour, which recognises excellence in the construction, design, innovation and technology of housing. We were successful and took out one of the Major Awards for Project Home of the Year and were a finalist for Home of the Year. From this award we will now travel again to Sydney in October for the State Awards, which is also

very exciting and an achievement for all the hard work we and our team have worked towards over the past four and half years, since starting our G.J. Gardner Homes business. Who is new to your team? There are a few new changes to our team, and we are very excited to welcome on board Lisa Jillett, who has taken over our accounts department. Lisa has come from an auto motor background. In our sales team, there’s Haley Bird, who has come from a hairdressing background and lives in Walcha with her two children, and Craig Wright, who is very well known for all his involvement in our community. After recently building with us, Craig will be an asset – knowing the process to help others who are wishing to build a new home or investment.

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NEGS Now accepting enrolments for 2013 Contact the Enrolments OfďŹ ce for more information P: 02 6774 8752

learning with spirit Uralla Road, Armidale NSW 2350 Australia T +61 02 6774 8700 E

New England i65  

Issue 65 of the New England Focus.

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