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SKILLED sculptor Jino Van Bruinessen builds an elaborate sand castle as part of this summer’s Arabian Nights themed sandsculpting exhibition. See Page 8. Picture: Gary Sissons

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Bush blaze scare

Teen arrested after Carrum Downs fire Neil Walker A FIRE that swept through part of Carrums Downs during Saturday’s statewide heatwave may have been started intentionally. Police arrested a 15-year-old girl in relation to the bushfire that forced the evacuation of about 30 residents from Darnley Drive and Augusta Court on Saturday (6 January). The initially small fire began in nearby Blue Wren Rise at about 3pm and quickly threatened to engulf homes. A Darnley Drive house was badly damaged by the fire. No-one was injured and firefighters managed to bring the blaze under control by about 9pm on Saturday evening. Police announced on Sunday morning that Frankston Crime Investigation Unit detectives charged the arrested Carrum Downs teenager with intentionally causing a bushfire. She was bailed to appear at a chil-


of the

dren’s court at a later date. More than 300 firefighters responded to control the Carrum Downs fire amid the hottest day of the summer in Melbourne with temperatures topping 40 degrees celsius on Saturday afternoon. A cool weather change brought with it high winds but fears this may fan the flames did not eventuate. The blaze ripped through 36 hectares of bush. Two water bombing helicopters were called in to help fight the fire at its peak. “We’ve had one property which has sustained some fairly significant damage where some embers have come in through the roof, through an evaporative cooler,” Country Fire Authority regional chief officer Trevor Owen told ABC News. “There is also some fencing at the back of those properties and we’ve also sustained some damage to four sheds.” Continued Page 5



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Roads take heavy toll on men MEN make up the majority of road deaths in the past year, accounting for 186 of the 255 fatalities in Victoria. The number of lives lost includes 151 lives lost on country roads and 104 in metropolitan areas. Road Policing Command Assistant Commissioner Doug Fryer said while the road toll was down for the first time in four years, “it’s sobering to reflect that 255 families move into the new year without their loved one”. “My deepest condolences to each of the families who I can only guess continue to contemplate why, why have they been thrust into the sadness and loss that is the unexpectedness of road trauma,” Mr Fryer said. He said it had been disheartening to be told on New Year’s Day of the death of the first person on the roads for 2018. “The information I have at this stage is that it appears the car may have swerved to miss a kangaroo,” Mr Fryer said. “I cannot accept that it is only a matter of time before another life is lost, that the cost of mobility will at times be someone’s life. “That is why police will continue to run intelligence led state-wide and local police operations that focus on speed, drink and drug driving, distraction, seat belt compliance and fatigue. “My resolve only strengthens too that we’ll continue to enforce and educate for greater road safety. And we’ll continue to call on the community to acknowledge that they, each and every motorist, rider, pedestrian and or cy-

clist, has a role in ensuring theirs and other road users safety.” He said analysis of road deaths showed “increases and decreases and ups and downs, but really at the core of all of this is a deep frustration and sadness”. “Sadness of course, that families have lost a loved one but one of frustration, that people continue to lose

their lives to road trauma. Provisional road death figures in 2017 show: n 151 lives were lost on country roads which is 59 per cent of all the lives lost n About 80 per cent of the fatal injury collisions on country roads occurred in speed zones of 100kph or higher. n 104 deaths on metropolitan roads,

a 37 per cent decrease to 2016 when 141 people lost their lives in metropolitan areas n The number of cyclist deaths has increased by 50 per cent, from eight in 2016 to 12 last year. n Motorcyclist deaths have decreased by 33 per cent from 55 in 2016 to 37 last year. One pillion passenger was killed.

n Passenger deaths have also increased by 29 per cent from 35 in 2016 to 45 last year. n Pedestrian deaths have decreased by 23 per cent from 40 in 2016 to 31 last year. n Single fatality collisions decreased 15 per cent from 261 in 2016 to 219 last year. n Double fatality collisions decreased 19 per cent with 13 in 2016 compared to 11. n Triple fatality collisions have increased 75 per cent with one in 2016 compared to four last year in which 12 people lost their lives. n The 254 lives were lost from 234 fatal collisions. n Males accounted for the majority of lives lost with 186 compared with 68 females with one unknown gender (following up reports). n The 25 to 29-year-old age bracket saw the biggest decrease in lives lost on our roads with 33 lives lost in 2016 compared with 19 in 2017, a decrease of 42 per cent. n November recorded the most lives lost with 32, up from 25 in 2016. n April had an increase in lives lost with 28 compared to 16 in 2016, a 75 per cent increase. Two double fatality collisions and thirteen single fatality collisions during the end of term one and Easter holidays contributed to this increase. n There were 44 lives lost as a result of collisions involving heavy vehicles, a 10 per cent increase from 2016 which had 40. n Heavy vehicle fatalities accounted for 17 per cent of all fatalities.

Frankston Times 8 January 2018






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Frankston Times 8 January 2018


Bush blaze arrested in its tracks

Death at motorbike track park

Continued from Page 1 The CFA advised residents to evacuate to a safe point at Carrum Downs Shopping Centre while firefighters brought the blaze under control. Firefighters also tackled a grass and scrub fire in Hastings at Cemetery Rd on Saturday afternoon. A water bomber was called in to douse the fire that burned close to a BlueScope Steel oil and gas pipeline. The two fires were among about 50 across Victoria reported to firefighters. Victoria’s Emergency Management Commissioner Craig Lapsley defended a decision not to issue an emergency warning for the Carrum Downs fire. “Even though there may be structures alight, or there may be fences alight or outbuildings that’s something the incident controller will determine about what is the immediate threat versus the immediate threat to life and injury,” he said at a media briefing. “Obviously that’s a dynamic environment. “The emergency warning is where there is imminent danger to your life.”

A YOUNG motorbike rider died after an accident at the Frankston Motorcycle Park last month. Sebastian D’Imperio, 16, a student at Frankston’s John Paul College, died at the Seaford track on Saturday 16 December. It is understood that no other bikes were involved in the fatal accident. The Frankston City Motorcycle Park Club immediately temporarily but indefinitely closed the motocross bike tracks at the park. The club issued a statement on its Facebook page saying it will work with Frankston Council, police and Motorcycling Victoria during investigations into the fatality. “Our thoughts are with the family and friends of the kind young man who lost his life,” the club said. Police will prepare a report for the coroner. Council is the landlord of the premises at 92 Old Wells Rd in Seaford. A GoFundMe online fundraising campaign raised more than $36,000 to help the 16-year-old’s family with funeral costs. A memorial service was held at Mentone’s St Patricks Catholic Church on 21 December. The fatality comes almost three years after the death of 25-year-old Danny Edlington in a collision on the main track at the Frankston Motorcycle Park in April 2015. The coroner’s office is expected to release the findings into the 2015 fatality this year.

Fire front: Firefighting crews tackled a bush blaze at Carrum Downs on Saturday aided by water bombers, far right, as residents from nearby Flora Park Way stayed on alert in case the fire spread. Pictures: Gary Sissons

Wednesday 10th January

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Frankston Times 8 January 2018


NEWS DESK Police patrol

Seasonal warning over online scams POLICE are warning potential buyers of online goods to be wary of scams involving items advertised on widely used social media sites and common online auction websites. The warning follows a number of robberies reported to police after several victims had arranged to meet with fake online sellers to pay for and receive goods. On Christmas Eve police arrested three men after they allegedly attempted to rob two men, in separate incidents, who they had arranged to sell smart phones to. Detectives are investigating two similar incidents reported in December. “If the price seems too good to be true, it generally is,” Detective Senior Constable Michael Haysom said. “If you are purchasing in person an item from an online seller, always arrange to meet in a public place.” The federal government also provides a website with advice for people who have been the victim of a scam at online. Reports of online scams can also be made to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission via that website. Anyone with information about similar incidents can contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or visit


Frankston Times 8 January 2018

Highway halt SOMERVILLE Highway Patrol members nabbed a speedster allegedly travelling 88km/h over the speed limit on the Mornington Peninsula Freeway overnight Friday, 29 December. The car was allegedly detected travelling at 188kph in a 100 zone just north of the Nepean Highway near Dromana shortly after 1am. The driver, a 32-year-old Rowville man, was intercepted and his vehicle impounded. He is expected to be charged on summons with speeding. The intercept was made as part of the Victoria-wide 15 December – 7 January Roadwise campaign aimed at reducing road trauma and improving road user behaviour. During the “high risk” time police focused on the main causes of fatalities and serious injuries, including excessive speed, driver distraction, seatbelt non-compliance, fatigue and drink and drug drivers.

Taxi stolen FRANKSTON detectives arrested two men following an alleged carjacking of a taxi in Carrum Downs Friday 29 December. Investigators have been told a taxi

Aftermath: Firefighters burn off gas in the air at Bayside Shopping Centre after canisters exploded. Part of a canister lies in a road nearby, right. Pictures: Gary Sissons

Shopping centre blasts probed A MAN arrested over an incident that caused alarm at Bayside Shopping Centre last month has been “released pending further enquiries”, police say. The central Frankston shopping centre was evacuated at about 7pm on Thursday 21 December when several forklift gas canisters near a was called to pick up passengers in Luscombe Avenue just before 8pm. Two male passengers entered the cab and allegedly threatened the driver with a knife. The driver, a 37-year-old Carrum Downs man, exited the vehicle and the offenders fled with the cab. Police tracked the taxi to the intersections of Kelman and Beach

shopping centre car park exploded. Police arrested a 57-year-old man on 28 December to “assist police with enquiries” and advised late last week he was released from custody. Firefighters from Frankston and Patterson River brigades quickly arrived at the shopping centre on 21 December during the busy

pre-Christmas shopping period to extinguish a blaze in the wake of explosions that police said occurred in a loading dock area. There were no injuries and damage to the surrounding area was minimal. Shoppers said they heard three “loud bangs” when the gas canisters exploded.

streets in Frankston where it was dumped. Detectives later arrested a 36-yearold man and a 28-year-old man, both from Carrum Downs.

Wednesday 3 January. The man was seen face down in the water at the beach off Point Nepean Road shortly after 2pm and he was pulled from the water. Attempts to resuscitate him were unsuccessful and the man died at the scene. Police will prepare a report for the Coroner.

Bay drowning A MAN drowned at the Rye front beach during the afternoon of



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Books and Braids: St Francis Xavier Primary School pupils Jenny and Layla, left and Chantelle in mirror, reflect on the joy of reading at hair care sessions at the school. Picture: Gary Sissons

Hair care with a twist for pupils BOOKS and braids may seem a baffling match to promote literacy but it’s a combination that’s working to encourage St Francis Xavier Primary School pupils to turn pages while sitting still for hair care sessions. The Frankston school’s literacy leader Lindsey Kennedy decided to introduce “books and braids” sessions during lunchtime breaks on Mondays and Fridays. Eight pupils at a time are invited to choose from a selection of books to read while waiting to get their hair styled and braided by Grade 5 and 6 girls. “It’s proving to be popular,” Ms Walker said.

“And it’s open to boys — I’ve heard some boys are growing their hair just to come along.” The teacher says she was inspired to introduce the hair-raising reading sessions at St Francis Xavier Primary School after a teaching friend in the US had success with the concept. Literary hairdresser Jennifer said: “I like it so much, it is not just good for us, it is good for them. “If they don’t know a word, I help them. Coming to our hair salon is a different environment to enjoy literacy. I wish I had one of these when I was younger.”


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Frankston Times 8 January 2018


NEWS DESK Proudly published by Mornington Peninsula News Group Pty. Ltd

PHONE: 03 5973 6424 Published weekly

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Audit period: Apr 2017 - Sept 2017

Source: AMAA; CAB Total Distribution Audit for further information visit

Editor: Neil Walker 0431 932 041 Journalists: Stephen Taylor, Neil Walker 5973 6424 Photographers: Gary Sissons, Yanni Dellaportas Advertising Sales: Anton Hoffman 0411 119 379 Real Estate Account Manager: Jason Richardson 0421 190 318 Production and graphic design: Marcus Pettifer Group Editor: Keith Platt 0439 394 707 Publisher: Cameron McCullough REGULAR CONTRIBUTORS: Peter McCullough, Stuart McCullough, Andrew “Toe Punt” Kelly, Craig MacKenzie ADDRESS: Mornington Peninsula News Group PO Box 588 Hastings 3915 Email: Web: DEADLINE FOR NEXT ISSUE: 1PM ON THURSDAY 11 JANUARY 2018 NEXT ISSUE PUBLICATION DATE: MONDAY 15 JANUARY 2018

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Under construction: A sculptor puts finishing touches to one of the Arabian Nights exhibits before the annual Sand Sculpting Australia event at Frankston’s foreshore. Picture: Gary Sissons

Sand sculptures tell tales THANKFULLY it took less than 1001 nights to build the latest attraction on Frankston’s foreshore telling the tales of Aladdin, Sinbad the Sailor, Ali Baba and the forty thieves and other Arabian Nights stories. Twenty skilled sculptors put in more than 5000 carving hours over 30 days using 3500 tonnes of brickies’ loam sand to build the Sand Sculpting Australia exhibition illustrating the stories of the Arabian Nights. Sandstorm Events director Sharon Redmond says the exhibition is open to visitors until 25 April. “Our aim is to capture the imagina-

tion and provide a unique experience that reappropriates the natural environment and encourages people to enjoy it in a new way,” she said. “This summer, you’ll be transported back in time to explore the ancient and ever-so-magical stories of the 1001 Arabian Nights, made completely from sand. “You can see Aladdin fall in love with Princess Jasmine and trick the Genie of the Lamp with his three wishes. “Take a journey with Sinbad the Sailor on his seven magical adventures as he meets mystical monsters and fantastical creatures; then, ‘Open Sesame’,

go deep with Ali Baba into the cave filled with jewels and gold.” The annual sand sculpting exhibition is hosted at the Frankston waterfront, 510N Nepean Highway until 25 April; Monday-Friday 10am-4pm daily and 10am-6pm on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays. Adults $14, concession $11, children (3-15 years old) $9, children under 2 free entry. A super pass for children is $18. More than 130,000 people visit the exhibition in Frankston each year. See or call 0426 280 603 for more exhibition details.


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Paddle power: Kayakers and canoeists, like this one at the mouth of Patterson River, can rest easy in the knowledge that they don’t need a permit for small electric motors to supplement their paddling. Picture: Gary Sissons

Year-long power test for paddlers KAYAKS and canoes can be fitted with small electric motors without being registered. The trial aims to reduce red tape for low-powered vessels travelling up to five knots and ends 31 December. The exemption is for kayaks and canoes with electric motors of up to 40 pounds thrust (or one horsepower or 750 watts). “If the trial period shows that the safety of paddlers is not compromised in any way, this exemption

is likely to become permanent,” Maritime Safety Victoria director Peter Corcoran. “This will also enable an easier process for people taking their paddle craft interstate.” The trial is in response to a recommendation from the Red Tape Commissioner to bring Victorian requirements closer to New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania. Mr Corcoran said the benefits of motors are that kayakers and other

paddlers can conserve energy and have some assistance in getting home after their trip. “Maritime Safety Victoria reminds paddlers that the addition of a motor presents different risks while operating their craft, including incorrectly fitting a motor that results in the hull no longer being watertight; travelling beyond competence and capability levels; overestimating the capacity of the kayak to handle conditions further offshore that may change without





warning,” he said. Regulations with which paddlers must comply include wearing a lifejacket, carrying a bailer or bilge pump and a waterproof buoyant torch, having the means of calling for help such as a mobile phone and having an alternative means of propulsion, such as a spare paddle. Safety equipment requirements, and guidance on how to fit a motor is available at: transportsafety.vic.

A HANDBOOK produced by Mornington Peninsula Post Polio Support Group to help polio survivors, has turned out to be the best seller for 2017 for Random Harvest e-library. “We have sold downloads of ‘Life Skills for Polios’ to Djakarta, Harare, Wales, various states of America and hard copies all around Australia,” its author Fran Henke said. “When postage turned out to be twice the cost of the book, we were relieved that Random Harvest based in New Jersey, US, offered to include it on the International Centre for Polio Education’s e-list.” Mrs Henke, of Hastings, said Random’s editor-in-chief “advised last week that our book was their best seller for the year”. Proceeds of e-book sales are shared with the international polio centre while all proceeds of hard copies go to Polio Network Victoria. The book was published with backing from Dromana and Rosebud Rotary clubs, RyeRosebud Lions, Mornington Peninsula Shire Metro Access program, other support groups and individuals. Mrs Henke said she decided to compile the book after attending the Australasian-Pacific Post Polio Conference in Sydney in 2016, where speakers provided up to date information on the wide range of issues affecting polio survivors. “Everything from sleep to swallowing, bracing, anaesthetics, pain management, exercise and cramps, was canvassed and I wanted to share the information to those who couldn’t attend,” she said. “I was able to go to Sydney thanks to an American Facebook friend and wanted to make sure she and others had the latest management advice. Another big plus has been that people who hadn’t come forward about their late effects, have bought the book and now are in the loop, also receiving the MPPPSG’s monthly newsletter.” Spiral bound copies of ‘Life Skills for Polios, a light hearted handbook’ are available from for $15 plus $7 postage; or the e-book: US$5 from

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Frankston Times 8 January 2018



Mayor call to open Keith Platt MORNINGTON Peninsula Shire mayor Cr Bryan Payne wants the public to be able to see a register of gifts made to council officers. “I personally agree that the gift register should be available for public inquiry and I will raise that matter with my fellow councillors,” Cr Payne said last week. The move for greater transparency around gifts to council officers follows revelations that shire CEO Carl Cowie in July 2016 was a guest aboard a cruise ship hired by prominent businessman and Portsea property owner, Lindsay Fox ("Shire boss on Fox ‘party’ cruise", The Times 11/12/17). Mr Cowie says that because the Mediterranean cruise was made at no cost to the shire “it was not required to be placed on the gift register”. It is understood that Mr Cowie and his wife paid their own airfares to Europe to join the cruise from Athens to Venice during council approved leave. The shire’s Gifts, Benefits and Hospitality policy – an “internal” document “owned” by the CEO states: “Gifts, benefits and hospitality received must not create a real or perceived sense of obligation that may lead to a perception of prefer-

ence or conflict.” The policy also states: “Councillors and council staff are to ensure that attendance at private functions does not have potential implications for council’s reputation or image or may cause an actual or perceived conflict of interest.” Several other cruise guests, as well as Mr Fox, own valuable property on the peninsula. When first asked about Mr Cowie’s trip last month Cr Payne, who was not a councillor at the time of the 2016 cruise, agreed “it could look like a conflict of interest if it didn’t have council approval”. Cr Bev Colomb, who was a councillor during the previous council term when Mr Cowie joined Mr Fox’s so-called “conception party”, said she had not been “part of an approval process” for the trip. She believed the then mayor, former councillor Graham Pittock, “knew of it, but it wasn't brought to all of us”. “My view is that management, along with councillors, of course, needs to declare an interest when any relevant issue comes up,” Cr Colomb said. “And this, along with all registers, needs to be accessible to the public.” Cr Colomb was one of four of the shire’s 11 councillors to respond to an email asking questions about council’s gifts policy. Two council-

lors – Hugh Fraser and Frank Martin - had an automatic email response saying they were on leave. Crs Simon Brooks, Sam Hearn, Kate Roper and Rosie Clark did not respond to the email. Cr Antonella Celi in her reply said she would leave any comment about the gifts policy up to the mayor. Cr David Gill said he was awaiting answers from council officers to questions he had asked about the gifts register “including if [registering a gift is] a legal requirement”. Each councillor was asked if they thought activities such as accepting a free cruise on a ship hired by a highprofile ratepayer such as Mr Fox should be listed in the gifts register and whether the register should be a public document. The official council response in December stated: “The gifts policy is an internal corporate policy. Such policies are not placed on council’s website. “The register has been audited on an annual basis. There is no legal requirement to make this available externally subject to Freedom of Information requests.” The Times asked the shire for details of the audit process (see left). Neighbouring Frankston Council’s Staff Gifts and Hospitality Policy register is available for public inspection. Mr Cowie returned to work late

MORNINGTON Peninsula Shire councillors will be discussing the pros and cons of opening up the shire’s gifts register for public scrutiny following CEO Carl Cowie’s presence aboard a luxury liner hired by high profile businessman and Portsea property owner Lindsay Fox in July 2016. Mr Cowie, left, says he was not required to register the trip and there is no legal requirement for the register to be a public document. However, other municipalties have decided gifts and benefits to councillors and council officers should be available for public scrutiny in much the same way they are declared by federal MPs.

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Frankston Times 8 January 2018

shire gifts list Questions and answers MORNINGTON Peninsula Shire CEO Carl Cowie late Friday afternoon provided answers to the following questions: Why is the gifts register is not available to the public? It is not a policy under the Local Government Act 1989 required to be public. Does Mr Cowie think the gifts register should be made public? If the LGA does not require it to be public, this is our guiding statutory instrument. It is not part of the CEO role to provide personal opinions under the Local Government Act. Who decides what "gifts" or other benefits should be added to the register? Items are listed on the register in line with the organisation policy, a policy consistent with good governance and procurement principles and applied across the 79 local government authorities in Victoria. How does the annual audit of the gift register work? It forms part of the annual audit that all 79 Victorian councils are required to undergo. What does the audit cover? What any audit covers, ensuring the elements of the audit analysis comply with generally accepted accounting principles. Who does the audit? VAGO (Victorian Auditor General’s Office). Who gets the audit results? The council’s audit and risk committee on an annual basis, which is a properly constituted committee of council to consider all such matters. The committee has independent auditing experts as well as councillor representation.

last year after a council-sanctioned trip which included seminars and conferences in Sweden, Germany and Malta. This trip was paid for from his $30,000 study tour allowance on top of his near $400,000 salary package. The “conception party” cruise in July 2016, took place before Mr Fox’s 80th birthday which was celebrated in April 2017 at Montalto Vineyard and Olive Grove, Red Hill South. Mr Fox – generally regarded as one of the peninsula’s most high profile property owners – chartered the Seabourn Odyssey for a sevenday trip between Athens and Venice for his “conception cruise”. The ship costs about $200,000 a day to charter and can carry more than 450 passengers. Mr Fox’s guests included actor Hugh Jackman, TV personality and Collingwood Football Club president Eddie McGuire, retail billionaire Solomon Lew and his Premier Investments CEO Mark McInnes, mining magnates Gina Rinehart and Andrew Forrest, former Crown Casino boss and horse breeder Lloyd Williams, the Pratt family and politicians Bill Kelty and Jeff Kennett. Several of the cruise guests own property on the peninsula.

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Frankston Times 8 January 2018



Drowning that made ALTHOUGH it was 50 years ago, many Australians can recall where they were when they heard that Australia had “lost” its 17th prime minister, Harold Holt. The news reverberated around the world, not necessarily because Mr Holt was known as a world leader, but because of the circumstances of his death: disappearing into the surf off a secluded beach within the restricted confines of the Portsea Officer Cadet School, at Point Nepean. Although his body was never found, the prime minister was presumed drowned and to most people it is memories of a leader who went missing rather than his political achievements that linger. It took until 2005 for a coroner to officially assign the cause of is death to accidental drowning. In the lead up to last Sunday’s memorial service to commemorate Mr Holt’s death, federal MPs spoke warmly about Mr Holt, both in his roles as a minister and prime minister, a position he held for less than two years. “He oversaw the dismantling of the White Australia policy, throwing open our doors to people from all corners of the world and sowing the seeds for the successful multicultural society is today – the most successful multicultural society in the world,”

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull told Parliament. Mr Holt had championed a “yes” vote in the 1967 referendum that saw Aboriginals being included in the national census. He had also been in office when Australia adopted decimal currency and “reintroduced” Australia “to our [Asian] region”. Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said Mr Holt’s public life “is perhaps unfairly remembered more for its tragic end rather than its worthy achievements”. Mr Holt had been “a breath of fresh air” in making himself available to the media with one of his “prepared remarks” being “All the way withy LBJ” – a reference to the then US President Lyndon Johnson – which “became shorthand for Australia’s plunge into the jungledark of the Vietnam War”. The ready access Mr Holt gave the media also led to his often being photographed in his wetsuit with a spear gun or, most famously, surrounded by bikini-clad young women on the beach at Portsea. The image makers did their job well and the pictures helped portray an outdoor-loving, almost larrikin adventurous leader. Perhaps overlooked at the time, the day of Mr Holt’s death also saw the arrival of round-the-world solo sailor Alec Rose, later Sir Alec. Mr Holt had gone to Point Nepean with his “secret lover” and neighbour Marjorie Gillespie to watch Rose sail

Commemoration: Harold Holt’s great granddaughter Zara Holt, his son Sam, Russell Joseph and Greg Hunt during Sunday’s wreath-laying ceremony at Cheviot Beach, Point Nepean. Picture: Supplied

his boat Lively Lady into Port Phillip. Also along for the day were Martin Simpson and Alan Stewart, friends of Mrs Gillespie's daughter, Vyner,. “Several boats were out to greet me [at The Heads] and one - a television launch - came alongside for pictures,” Rose later recalled in his book My Lively Lady. “I was warned of the dangerous currents and eddies of the narrow channel through The Heads - but I passed

through safely, feeling the swirl as I did so. “I didn’t know it at the time, but one of the watchers on the point as I sailed was Mr Holt, the prime minister, who was tragically drowned a few minutes later.” Flinders MP Greg Hunt announced the $50,000 to “upgrade the Harold Holt memorial and lookout at Cheviot Beach, saying the former prime minister “deserved to be known for more

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than just his disappearance”. “Prime Minister Holt is an incredibly important part of not just the Peninsula’s history, but our shared Australian story,” Mr Hunt told the 70 or so family, friends and invited guests attending the memorial service held near Fort Nepean because there was not enough room near Cheviot Beach itself. “As one of the founding members of the Liberal Party, Prime Minister Holt



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Frankston Times 8 January 2018

world news had a decorated parliamentary career, playing a vital role in dismantling the White Australia Policy, overseeing major reforms to Australian banking system, was the Minister responsible for the establishment of the Reserve Bank, introduced decimal currency and played a key role in the 1967 referendum that ensured full-blood Aborigines could now be counted in the national census,” Mr Hunt said. “The disappearance of Harold Holt off the coast of Cheviot Beach captured the imagination of a nation and is a moment that is entrenched into not only our nation’s history, but into our local history.” Mr Hunt said Nepean Historical Society would hold the $50,000 “in trust” for a memorial, with the final design being agreed on by the Holt family, the Harold Holt Memorial Committee and Parks Victoria. Liberal Party candidate for Nepean and one of the organisers of Sunday’s service Russell Joseph said it was “fitting here [to] remember Mr Holt as a progressive and dynamic Liberal leader who, among other

Kids die in hot cars campaign heats up

In deep: An undersea plaque in honour of Harold Holt. Picture: Brett Illingworth

Remembering fateful day: Portsea lifesavers Julian Hunt and Ian McEachern – here with Harold Holt’s son Sam - were the first on the scene in 1967 at Cheviot Beach, Portsea. Picture: Hugh Fraser

achievements presided over the 1967 referendum giving recognition to Aboriginal Australians, building a significant bridge towards reconciliation”. “The Indigenous story at this place is both beautiful and tragic as it was from here that Bunurong women were kidnapped and taken by sealers working these waters of Bass Strait. The sense of loss for their community remains significant today and has had a lasting impact upon them,” he said. “A similar sentiment today may be shared by us, as in the ocean behind us a tragic loss unfolded which had a

profound effect on modern Australia’s political and cultural history, but which principally remains today, a family tragedy.” The weeks preceding the service were also somewhat when all three levels of government – federal, state and municipal – refused to pay towards the memorial service, which was only saved when the Victorian Liberal Party offered to pay. The federal government has now promised a more fitting memorial than the stone cairn and plaque in the sand dunes overlooking Cheviot Beach and the plaque fastened by divers to the reef off the beach.

FRANKSTON South has been named as the fifth highest hotspot across the state for ambulance callouts to free children stuck in cars. A new Victorian government Don’t Leave Kids In Cars campaign, featuring former AFL Richmond player Matthew Richardson himself a new father, will urge parents and carers not to leave babies, toddlers and children in cars alone in any circumstances. The government says that four children a day in Victoria are put at risk of serious heat-related injury or death by being left unattended in parked cars. A car’s temperature can more than double within minutes, meaning on a typical summer day the temperature inside a parked car can quickly become 20-30 degrees hotter than outside. Youngsters’ body temperatures rise three to five times faster than an adult’s, meaning they are at greater risk of life-threatening heatstroke, de-

hydration and organ damage when left in a car. “There’s no excuse and no exceptions – our most precious valuables, our children, should never be left in the car,” Victorian Families and Children Minister Jenny Mikakos said. “Hot summer days can kill, and even on a milder day in the mid-20s, the temperature inside a parked vehicle can easily get to 20 to 30 degrees hotter than outside. “Don’t let a moment of complacency or frustration put your loved ones at risk – always take them with you.” The Don’t Leave Kids In Cars message is a state government, Kidsafe and Ambulance Victoria campaign. The top 10 postcodes for callouts were Werribee (43 callouts), Narre Warren (42), Tarneit (41), Pakenham (38), Frankston South (34), Roxburgh Park (33), Cranbourne (31), Ballarat (28), Melton (26) and Preston (23).

Sunset Cinema comes to Mornington Racecourse options from the Mornington Racecourse team, and a stocked beer and wine bar for the parents. Supported by local businesses Jacobs & Lowe, Steller and Peninsula Kids, and set upon the lush grounds of the racecourse, it will be a fantastic evening to get outdoors and enjoy the summer weather. Book your tickets now at https://

THE Mornington Racecourse Sunset Cinema experience returns to the Peninsula this summer in January. Popping up on Friday January 12, Sunset Cinema at Mornington Racecourse is a one night only outdoor cinema event perfect for the whole family. In addition to the feature film, Despicable me 3, screening from 7pm, there’ll also be rides and activities for the kids, catering and snack bar


Big turnout expected for exhibition THE Peninsula Woodturners Guild’s “Woodturning in the Park” Exhibition will run from 18-23 January 2018 10am to 4pm each day. Entry is free, as is parking in the grounds of the McClelland Gallery and Sculpture Park, 390 McClelland Drive, Langwarrin. Items will also be offered for sale. Demonstrations of woodturning will be held at the Club’s Studio and workshop which is located within the grounds of the Sculpture Park. Woodturning is an age-old craft done largely by hand. As the lathe turns and spins a piece of wood, it is shaped by hand, using a chisel. This process brings out fantastic colours and grains in the wood and can be displayed in beautiful ways. The technique of spinning wood on the lathe produces sculptural and artistic items, alongside utilitarian ones such as bowls, platters, pens etc. Demonstrations on the day will have a variety of items showcased. This is your chance to get close to the maker, have your queries answered, or to get in touch with makers for a commissioned piece, be it a wall hanging sculptural piece, clock, or a handcrafted component for your chair/rocking chair, wooden tables etc. The possibilities are endless. Enjoy this rare opportunity to get your hands on a handcrafted item, using an age-old craft. In an age filled with cheap, disposable and machine-made items, a craft that goes back centuries is definitely something to behold. If your interest lies beyond being a buyer, and you’d like to join the Guild to have a go yourself, you can download the application form the website The Guild was formed in 1984 with objectives of: n Bringing people together interested in all facets of the craft; n Expanding the interest in the craft by developing the talents of members through lectures, demonstrations and workshop experience; and n Bring the craft to the wider population through exhibitions, workshops etc

Peninsula Woodturners Guild Presents

Woodturning In The Park 2018 At McClelland Sculpture Park Thursday 18 January - Tuesday 23 January 10.00am to 4.00pm


PWG Studio, McClelland Sculpture Park McClelland Drive, Langwarrin Demonstrations Items for Sale Free Entry Membership grew from humble beginnings to over 200 and the Guild now has its own demonstration/meeting area with audio visual facilities and a dedicated workshop with a number of lathes and associated equipment where training sessions are held for members under the guidance of tutors 6 days per week.

Frankston Times 8 January 2018


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OUR feet, ankles and knees are relied upon for most of our daily activities, yet they’re often neglected, leading to pain, injury and mobility issues. So with a new year upon us, why not ensure you’re feet and legs are in good shape to tackle theFrankston year ahead. They offer traditional family TRISTAR Medical Group We asked the experts at Foot medicine and&give you the ability is a fully bulk billing GP centre Leg Pain Clinics for to to some make tips an appointment with your offering high quality, accessible keeptoyou painchoice free and active and even a female of doctor and affordable medical help services in 2018! doctor available. Their patient and Frankston and surrounding suburbs. Always and leg pain approach to health family-centred Conveniently located at1.7A Stationget foot checked. 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Refurbishment completed! In November 2016, St John of God Frankston Rehabilitation Hospital commenced their $9.7 million refurbishment. After 12 months, they are pleased to announce they have now completed all major renovations, with only some minor works remaining. New external signage will be also be completed in the next month. Many milestones have been achieved: • Refurbishment of 46 rooms and ensuites, including building 4 entirely new patients rooms • Increased single room capacity • New spaces on ground floor include: extended foyer with airlock entry, new Chapel, Multipurpose room and Café • Improved spaces on first level include Occupational Therapy (OT) ADL Kitchen, OT gym and upgraded pharmacy. • Ambulance entrance has relocated to a new undercover area at rear of hospital, to improve traffic flow and ease of patient entry. • Many behind the scenes mechanical and services include a new 17 tonne generator, upgraded airconditioning and plumbing. Chief Executive Officer / Director of Nursing, Sally Faulkner, said the most critical component of the refurbishment was to increase the number of single rooms at their hospital to better support patients through their recovery.

“We have converted our three and four bed rooms to two bed rooms and refurbished all bathrooms. Providing our patients with greater comfort and privacy was our ultimate goal,” Sally said. For a rehabilitation hospital, access is incredibly important and new front and rear entrances to the hospital will make it easier for patients as well as vehicles that transport patients after surgery or injury. “Whilst this was a comprehensive and detailed refurbishment, it occurred in stages to minimise the impact on our inpatient and outpatient services. There was a buzz of excitement as each stage finished and we are so pleased with the result”. “Living through a refurbishment is never easy with disruption and changes. We are very thankful to our patients and families for their understanding as we have undertaken this essential work. Our caregivers and contractors efforts to ‘keep calm and carry on’ during the refurbishment works whilst supporting our patients and families during this time has been wonderful.” Sally said REFERRALS: Outpatient referrals can be sent to: St John of God Frankston Rehabilitation Hospital 255-265 Cranbourne Road, Frankston 3199 Fax: (03) 9788 3280 Inpatient referrals can be sent to: Fax: (03) 9788 3304

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Specialist rehabilitation - under the one roof Call us.. 03 9788 3333 We are committed to helping our patients. Our specialist programs include: Cardiac Chronic Pain Management Diabetes Management Falls and Balance General Rehabilitation (Reconditioning) after an accident, illness, injury or surgery Medical Intervention Program (GEM style program) Neurology Oncology Orthopaedic Movement Disorder programs - ie.Parkinson’s Pre-op rehabilitation (preparing for surgery) Pulmonary Reconditioning Stroke Driving assessments by a qualified Occupational Therapy Driving Assessor

Simply ask your GP or Specialist for a referral to our hospital 255-265 Cranbourne Road, Frankston Telephone: 03 9788 3333 Email: Hospitality I Compassion I Respect I Justice I Excellence

Find us on Facebook SJOGFrankston Frankston Times 8 January 2018


BLUES AT THE BRIARS BACK FOR 2018 Fresh off the back of 2017’s epic festival, Blues At The Briars returns on February 24 for its sixth celebration of blues and roots music on the Peninsula. A combination of great music, amazing food and wine, and a dedicated children’s area make this day a must in everyone’s calendar. The Peninsula’s best kept secret keeps delivering in the amazing rural setting of the historic Briars homestead and surrounds. Bring a chair or a picnic rug and soak up the landscape and vibe while listening to the best bands from Australia and abroad.


Frankston Times 8 January 2018

February’s festival is shaping to be the best yet. A.J. Ghent (USA) constructs an indie rock sound howling from the church to the blues. Z Star Delta (UK), described as the love child of Jimmy Hendrix and Nina Simone, takes you on a personal and spiritual journey to experience her intense magic. Come and experience her live at the Briars. Blues At The Briars are also proud to announce the triumphant return of the best boogie pianist on the planet, Ben Waters (UK) joined by Derek Nash the best

Sax player going around. This year Blues At The Briars have pulled out all the stops with a sound and lighting upgrade so the tunes will be crisp and clear for all to enjoy. The VIP area returns with amazing food and drink packages, in a dedicated marquee where you can enjoy the show in luxury. Treat yourself this indulgence and make it a day to truly remember. A fully stocked bar with very reasonable non-festival prices will be open all day.


Escaped detainee found in Frankston Compiled by Brodie Cowburn DURING the early hours of Wednesday morning (Boxing Day) 4 boys, who were amongst the lads detained at the training farm on Tortoise Head Island, escaped to the mainland. One lad swam out to a boat which was anchored some hundreds of yards from the shore. He then picked up his companions and they sailed to Stony Point, a distance of five miles. One of the lads William Hennessy, aged 16 years made his way as far as Frankston where he was promptly arrested, as the police had been warned of the boy’s escape. So far the other boys have not been traced. *** LIEUTENANT L. P Little, 27th Battalion, A.I.F, is reported to have won the Military Cross. He is the son of Mr David Little. Shire engineer, of Werribee, and nephew of Mrs C Maxwell, of Frankston. *** SERGEANT Horace Picking, nephew of Mr R. T. Picking, has been awarded the Military Medal for conspicuous bravery on the field. He is now lying in hospital, wounded and suffering from the effects of gas. *** FORCIBLE language is used by Gunner H. S Smith, who is serving in France, in referring to strikers in Australia. He regards them as worse than cowards. ***

DOUGLAS Picking, only son of Mr and Mrs R. T Picking of “Mydugra” Glen Huntly and “’Dindorbonda, Frankston, has enlisted for active service abroad. *** MARK Reginald Peters, for being drunk in charge of a horse and cart in Bay Street on 22nd December was fined 5s or 12 hours imprisonment. *** A BOAT house at Seaford, belonging to Mr Charles Hunter, Middle Park, was broken into on Christmas evening and a quantity of fishing tackle stolen. A telephone message was sent to the Frankston police at about 8pm. Constable Ryan arrived at Seaford by train and arrested on suspicion three young men who had boarded the train at Seaford. The suspects were searched by the Constable and the stolen property was found in their possession. *** A SUCCESFUL reunion of Roman Catholics was held at Frankston on Boxing Day and attracted from all parts of Melbourne and Suburbs a crowd of between 30,000 and 40,000 people. Fifteen special trains, in addition to the usual augmented holiday service were run from Flinders Street to Frankston and they were all uncomfortably overcrowded. One of the trains as it passed through Chelsea was pelted with eggs. *** NOTICE TO READERS.

THERE is no doubt that many events in the outlying districts are unrecorded. We will be pleased if readers will furnish us with the details of any occurrence of public interest for publication in THE STANDARD. The aim of the proprietors of the ‘Standard’ is to do all in their power to foster the continual material welfare of the district—but naturally the more liberally we are supported the better paper we can produce, and the greater will be our opportunity to cater as an enterprising journal for the news wants of the community. *** THROUGH the energy of some of the ladies of Langwarrin the sum of £5 was collected and spent in the purchase of gifts to fill 40 bags which were distributed amongst the invalids at the Camp on Thursday. *** T. R. B. MORTON & Son report having sold, per J. L. Parkes, one of their auctioneers, Mr John Boyds property with residence in Norman S. Flinders, for £600 cash. *** FOR many years past Frankston Park has been a rendezvous for some of the best athletes in the State assembling on New Year’s Day to try conclusions in running, cycling and woodcutting, and the committee has always put down with a strong hand anything they observed in the way of crook performances. Not withstanding the many adverse influences that existed this year towards having a successful

meeting, the sports were carried out most successfully, thus showing that the public retain their confidence in having a pleasant outing and a good day’s amusement. Mr Bendixsen, the promoter, and his energetic committee, are to be heartily congratulated on the success of the first Henley on Kannanook Creek. The boats left the starting point at 4.30 and hundreds of spectators witnessed a most picturesque sight as they came down the creek. High artistic taste was displayed, and to judge which was the best decorated boat was a very hard matter to decide. The voting board was the centre of attraction and money was paid freely for votes. *** TOOT YOUR OWN HORN A HEN is not supposed to have much common sense or tact, she every time she lays at egg she cackles forth the fact. A rooster hasn’t got a lot of intellect to show, but none the less most roosters have enough good sense to crow. The mule the most despised of beasts has a persistent way of letting people know he’s around by his insistent bray. The busy little bees they buzz, bulls bellow and cows moo, and doves and pigeons coo. The peacock spreads his tail and squawks; pigs squeal and robins sing, and even serpents know enough to hiss before they sting. But man, the greatest masterpiece that Nature could devise, will

often stop and hesitate before he’ll advertise. *** A VERY pleasant after noon was spent at the Langwarrin Camp, sports on Boxing Day. The programme of 23 events was most interesting and was thoroughly enjoyed by visitors as well as the men in camp Mrs Deane, President of the Frankston Red Cross society, presented the prizes. The prizes had all been purchased with the money obtained by the Frankston Red Cross society and the Wattle Club The following is the winner of each event: THROWING THE CRICKET BALL: 1, Tarrant, 2, Adams INTERSATE RELAY RACE: 1, Victoria, 2, Western Australia ONE MILE WALK: 1, Lewis, and Nunn (dead heat) SACK RACE: 1. McGregor 2, Lane; NOVELTY BAND RACE: 1, Bartholomew W, Walsh WHEELBARROW RACE: 1, Dorney and Mason, 2, McGregor and Franklin HORSEBACK PILLOW FIGHT: 1, Gunther, 2, Adams CATCHING THE GREASY PIG: 1, McGregor. *** From the pages of the Mornington Standard, 5 January 1918

WHAT’S NEW... Coast: The artists’ retreat – Cape Schanck to Point Nepean

8 DECEMBER – 18 FEBRUARY At Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery



• FREE INTERACTIVE ACTIVITY Add a sea creature to the rockpool during the exhibition

An MPRG exhibition

FOR over 200 years, the Mornington Peninsula has been a muse and haven for artists. Attracting a stellar roll call of some of the most recognisable names in Australian art, the wild and rugged coast has inspired works from artists such as Eugene von Guérard, Nicholas Chevalier, Louis Buvelot, Violet Teague, John Perceval and Albert Tucker. This ambitious exhibition brings together masterpieces from these iconic artists as the basis of an extended conversation, considering our relationship to the coast, to the Australian landscape and our environment. Newly commissioned works from GW Bot, Megan Cope, Raafat Ishak, Euan Macleod and Kerrie Poliness tackle contemporary questions of our connection to landscape. These commissions, the result of a recently established artists in residence program at Police Point in Portsea, consider the beauty

and magnitude of the coastline through painting, printmaking, sculpture, photography and video. Visitors are invited to add a sea creature to the rock pool in the interactive activity area. Also on display over summer is Glass: Art Design Architecture, a JamFactory touring exhibition showcasing 23 outstanding projects by contemporary Australian artists, designers and architects. Visitors can enjoy free guided tours on Saturdays and Sundays at 3pm, curator talks are run on 16 and 27 January, there are also school holiday workshops, artist talks and excursions and a one-day artist camp at Police Point for creatives, guided by artist David Hugh Thomas. Visit the MPRG website to find out more about the exhibitions and special events and to listen to podcasts and artist videos

For over 200 years, the Mornington Peninsula has been a muse and haven for artists. Coast features works by Eugene von Guérard, Nicholas Chevalier, Louis Buvelot, Violet Teague, John Perceval and Albert Tucker alongside contemporary artists GW Bot, Megan Cope, Raafat Ishak, Euan Macleod and Kerrie Poliness.

• SCHOOL HOLIDAY WORKSHOPS Workshops for primary school children and VCE Art & Studio Arts folio development

• FREE GUIDED TOURS Saturdays and Sundays at 3pm

Nicholas Chevalier, Tunnel Rock, Cape Schanck, Victoria 1862, oil on cardboard, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Bequest of Mrs Nicholas Chevalier 1919 adults $4 concession $2

Frankston Times 8 January 2018


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Frankston Times 8 January 2018

By Stuart McCullough ENOUGH was enough. I’d let it do as it pleased for far too long and the time had come to take tough and decisive action. For several weeks I’d allowed my facial follicles complete freedom and, in that time, they’d made the most of the opportunity. In a surprisingly short amount of time, my beard had gone totally free-range. The end result was not so much a cultivated piece of man-scaping as it was the unkempt backyard of an abandoned rental property after the tenants have long since scarpered. It was messy and made me look like a castaway. The time had come for a serious bit of trimming. The first crucial step in a successful beard trim is to charge the trimmer. This requires finding the charging dock, placing the shaver on said charging dock and remembering to turn the electricity on. It sounds surprisingly simple, but you’d be amazed how often I have succeeded in fouling up one if not several of these steps. There’s nothing worse that a flat battery mid-trim. Bitter experience had taught me that having the trimmer konk out mid-trim results in the blades taking my beard in the kind of vicelike death-grip that only the Jaws of Life can release. It was mistake I was determined not to make. Again. There was little room for error. The need to trim had been prompted by an important meeting; the type of meeting where looking like a derelict could well be a disadvantage. It was essential that I make myself as presentable as the raw materials would permit. Perhaps foolishly, I waited until the last possible minute before attending to my man-scaping needs. With the benefit of hindsight, I appreciate that this was an act of pure facial follicle folly. Indeed, I was not so much tempting fate as I was taunting it, baring my metaphorical buttocks and daring it to do its worst. With the battery charged, things started well. Facial hair tumbled into the sink in huge clumps. In moments, I would be transformed from looking like Grizzly Adams’ stunt double to sporting the kind of stubble that would make Don Johnson weep with envy. I’d be out the door in no time, ready to prepare for my big meeting. And then, at exactly the half way mark, the trimmer stopped working. To be precise, it was still making a sound, but was not longer trimming anything. To have a bushy beard is one thing. To have designer stubble is another. But to half exactly half of each is nothing short of catastrophic. The difference between the two sides of my face was so pronounced that I looked like a human Neenish hair tart. I’ll admit I started to panic. Did I

have time to shave it all off? Could I sit through a meeting with my head turned to one side the whole time? Or, alternatively, should I rest my head in my palms and hope that no one thought it was weird, even when I was speaking? So many options, so little time. As is so often the case when disaster of the mechanical variety strikes in our house, I decided the best course of action was to panic. Which involved waking up my wife and asking her to help. This, of course, required her to overcome the waves of convulsive laughter she experienced upon catching sight of my fifty-fifty face. Producing a screwdriver, she pulled the thing apart. This, of course, took me even further away from being ready for work. She then prodded, poked and scraped, before asking me when I’d last oiled it. Luckily, I knew exactly when I’d last oiled the trimmer because the last time I’d done it was… never. Sure, the instructions said it should be oiled on a regular basis and I’d been using that thing for at least six years without a second thought. Some might call such conduct reckless. I, however, like to think of myself as an optimist. I have great faith in machinery. Perhaps more than it deserves. It’s not the first time I’ve done this. I remember being at University and complaining to my brother that my electric shaver had packed it in. He then asked how long it’d been since I’d last emptied it. Until that moment, I had no idea that emptying your electric shaver was, in fact, a thing. The poor mite had simply choked on stubble until it could take no more. Goodness knows where I thought all the hair ended up. Presumably taken by the shaving fairies. Having applied oil before putting the screws back in, things took a turn for the better when I flicked the switch and it sounded like its old self. As I raised the trimmer to my face, hair rained down once more. I was saved. Within minutes I was wholly transformed. I no longer looked like a roadie for Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs but like someone who, by rights, should be attending a very important meeting. I’ve no idea why it is that I leave these things to the last minute. Or why it is that I think that I can ignore the need for routine maintenance, despite my previous experiences. I vow to be better. From this day on I will either learn to follow instructions or, alternatively, never trim my beard again. You’ll know which way I’ve gone next time we run into each other. Until then, if you see someone in the distance who looks like he should be a member of ZZ Top, please look the other way.

Caleb Nicholes joins Skye United SOCCER

By Craig MacKenzie SKYE United completed the first signing coup of 2018 when it convinced scoring legend Caleb Nicholes to come out of retirement and join the State 3 South-East promotion candidate. Nicholes, 35, had three stints with Langwarrin having first joined the club in 1999. He has also played with Fitzroy City, Frankston Pines, East Richmond and Springvale White Eagles and scored 192 goals for Langy. Nicholes made 249 league appearances for the Lawton Park outfit and won an unprecedented 10 club Golden Boot awards. He retired after playing in last year’s State 1 South-East championship side and scored in the last game of the season. He is a senior pastor at Southern Lights church which is close to Skye United’s headquarters at Skye Recreational Reserve. “I’m mates with (Skye coach) Billy (Armour) and full credit to him for doing a lot of convincing,” said Nicholes. “I don’t know how many games I’ll play, maybe 10, maybe 15 or so, but we’ll just take it week by week and see if we can squeeze a few more games out of these legs. “My standard has always been a goal a game and that’s what I’ll aim for. “I don’t really know a lot about Skye but I’ve been told it’s like a mini Langy and that they’ve got a good culture down there and that’s important. “It sounds like they have good people there who want to build the club up and I’m hoping that a bit of experience can help them get promoted. “It’ll be good to have a few derbies against Strikers and Seaford. “I haven’t played against those sides for years and I’m really looking forward to it.” Skye is buzzing with the news and the club has high expectations of the impact Nicholes can make. “Caleb’s impact will be huge,” said Armour. “His experience and his knowledge of the game will have a big impact on our players and it will make the rest of the peninsula sit up and take notice. “He’ll be a good drawcard for other players knowing that a player of his calibre has decided to join us.” Armour has lost Wumjock Jock, Dan Utting and English import Jacob Scotte-Hatherly from last year’s squad and aims to sign another four or five players. “We didn’t have enough depth last year and we need to address that.” The cagy Armour was unusually forthright when asked about his aims in 2018. “We want to get promoted. That’s our number

Star recruit: Vice-president Stuart Lawrence (left) and senior coach Billy Armour flank new Skye United signing Caleb Nicholes. Picture: Gemma Sliz

one priority. “After the disappointment of that last game (in 2017) half the squad was ready to go again. They knew how much it hurt to just miss out and they don’t need me to tell them what the aim is this year. “They’re an ambitious group and they want to go one step further.” So far Armour has retained Mark O’Connor, Daniel Attard, Marcus Collier, Jason Nowakowski, Johnny Andrinopoulos and Jonathan Crook. New NPL2 side Langwarrin will play an intraclub match at Lawton Park on Saturday 13 January at 10am. Other pre-season games are against Heidelberg United at Lawton Park on Saturday 20 January at 10am (under-20s) and 12 noon (seniors), Green Gully at Green Gully Reserve on Tuesday 23 January at 7.30pm and a seniors’ intraclub match at Lawton Reserve on Monday 29 January at 6.30pm. Frankston Pines and new playing assistant coach Ben Caffrey get their 2018 pre-season underway this week on the training track and the Monterey Reserve outfit will have its first hitout at home on Saturday 20 January against Skye United with the reserves kicking off at 1pm and the seniors at 3pm. Pines host Geelong Rangers (seniors only) on Saturday 10 February at 3pm and are at home again on Saturday 17 February (seniors and reserves) against East Brighton at 1pm and 3pm.

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Pines seniors and reserves are away to Casey Comets on Saturday 17 March (kick-off times to be confirmed). Peninsula Strikers aim to bounce straight back following last year’s relegation from State 2 South-East and English imports Oscar Marsden and Ryan Thompson are due to arrive in Australia this week. Forwards Thompson and Marsden played with Brigg Town in England’s Northern Counties East League Division One. Although Thompson is only 21 he is the longest serving player in Brigg Town’s senior squad and in 2015/16 was the manager’s player of the year and the players’ player of the year. Marsden is 20 and his previous clubs are North Cave, Sculcoates Amateurs and Pocklington Town. Marsden’s brother lives in Sydney and both players will stay there for a few days before heading to Melbourne. There has been a change in Striker’s coaching set-up with reserves coach Jamie Paterson becoming assistant to senior coach Andy O’Dell. Graham Watson is now in charge of the reserves assisted by his son John. Initially new signing Aron Wilford was appointed as playing assistant to O’Dell but work commitments have forced the big central defender to concentrate on playing duties. Strikers will play Doncaster Rovers (seniors and reserves) at Centenary Park on Saturday

17 February (kick-off times to be confirmed), Mornington (seniors only) at Centenary Park on Tuesday 20 February at 7pm, Heatherton United (seniors and reserves) at Centenary Park on Saturday 24 February (KO TBC) and Elwood (seniors and reserves) at Centenary Park on Saturday 3 March at 1pm and 3pm. Meanwhile State 4 South club Baxter faces a huge task in replacing veteran striker Mark Pagliarulo who has been appointed under-15 head coach at Italian-backed NPL heavyweight Bulleen. Pagliarulo was first approached by Alien Fitness founder John Maisano at his Rosebud gym in December and a few days later he was appointed to the Bulleen role by the club’s technical director Harry Bingham. “I’m officially retired now,” said Pagliarulo. “I’ll be doing three sessions a week at Bulleen on top of playing games so I’m going to put everything into the coaching side of things. “It’s lucky for me to get this opportunity so high up so I had to take it. “I’m sad to be leaving Baxter though because what they did for me and my family was massive and I can’t thank them enough.” While Baxter gaffer Francis Beck sifts through a number of possibilities to replace Pags up front the saga surrounding the naming of a senior coach and confirmation of a home ground for State 4 South rival Rosebud Heart drags on. The club already faces a mass player exodus and the longer it dithers in signing a coach the less likely it is to retain the handful of players who remain from last year’s senior squad. State 5 South club Somerville Eagles look set for a major senior squad revamp under new player-coach and former Heart favourite David Greening. Likely newcomers include central midfielder Mick Clark from Elwood City, winger Kaddison English from Rosebud Heart, right back Jack McKenna from Langwarrin and central defenders Lachlan Davie from Diamond Valley United and Scott Laverty from Surfside Waves. Midfielder Bjorn Kutschera has recovered from the broken foot suffered in round five last season while Harry Van Staveren, top scorer in the club’s Bayside League squad last season is now available for the State 5 South squad. The seniors and reserves will take on Bayswater Strikers at Somerville Secondary College on Sunday 4 February, Sandringham at Somerville Secondary College on Saturday 10 February, Croydon City Arrows at Dorset Recreation Reserve on Saturday 3 March, and Mount Lilydale Old Collegians at Somerville Secondary College on Saturday 10 March. All kick-off times will be confirmed closer to the match dates. Check the club’s facebook page.

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