The Northern Rivers Times Newspaper Edition 195

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Advertising: 1300 679 787 Your local news, entertainment, tv, notices and sports Edition 195 April 4, 2024 Phone: 1800 809 336 LISMORE CASINO BALLINA STH GRAFTON Email: info@p ark viewfunerals. com. au LOCAL FASHION PAGE 11 CONSULTANT PROBES COUNCIL BULLYING CLAIMS Full story continued page 2 by Tim Howard Totem poles tell the history of the area Full story page 7 by Samantha Elley World Adaptive Surf Championships Full story page 54 Residents and visitors to Evans Head may have noticed a new art installation as they walk along the river’s edge. An independent investigation into staffng issues, including bullying, in Clarence Valley Council has been underway since the start of the year, it was revealed at the council’s latest meeting. Mayor Peter Johnstone confrmed an independent Audit Risk Improvement Committee investigation into the reasons behind the staff turnover fgures at council would include investigation of claims of bullying. And during debate there were claims the investigation was looking into allegations of bullying from Full story page 4 by Tim Howard YAMBA CHANTS MAKES ACA

Consultant probes council bullying claims

An independent investigation into staffing issues, including bullying, in Clarence Valley Council has been underway since the start of the year, it was revealed at the council’s latest meeting.

Mayor Peter Johnstone confirmed an independent Audit Risk Improvement Committee investigation into the reasons behind the staff turnover figures at council would include investigation of claims of bullying.

And during debate there were claims the investigation was looking into allegations of bullying from current and former council staff and councillors. The allegations came during debate on a notice of motion from Cr Debrah Novak that sought to show staff turnover figures at the council were similar or better than other councils in NSW.

Her NOM proposed: that council informs community how Clarence Valley Council staff turnover rates in recent years compares to those of other councils. Councillors voted 7-2 for it.

Mayor Peter Johnstone that the ARIC committee had engaged management consultants Centium to conduct the investigation which should wrap up in a few months.

He said the results of the investigation would be the subject of a report to council, which he expected to arrive before the council election in September.

Cr Johnstone said he and the general manager, Laura Black, kept themselves at “arms length” from the investigation, but he said it was likely its findings would be confidential.

He said the ARIC guidelines included this: “Information and documents pertaining to the committee are confidential and are not to be made publicly available.”

“Whether or not the terms of reference will be made public will be for others to decide, but I expect that decision will

be made in accordance with the terms of reference,” Cr Johnstone said.

“The scope will have been agreed between the ARIC committee and Centium.”

Cr Johnstone said he did not know what the cost to the council would be and but expected the figure to become known later this month.

Cr Novak said the council needed to correct perceptions that the council’s staff turn over numbers were bad, when in truth they were better than many councils, including neighbours, such as Ballina.

In her comment in the report to councillors, Ms Black said claims on social media that staff turnover at council was worse than neighbouring councils were not correct.

“Data gathered from current workforce management plans and consultation with neighbouring councils indicates, Clarence Valley Council is not experiencing staff turnover any greater than that of other as neighbouring councils,” Ms Black wrote.

“Clarence Valley Council’s staff turnover as at December 30, 2023 was 12% and at March 14, 2024 was 14%.

“On any given day, staff turnover is calculated across the prior 365 days per below formula provided by the Australian Human Resource Institute, and therefore can change daily.

“For this reason, council’s generally report either the prior calendar or financial year to provide comparative data across years in Workforce Management Plans.”

Some councillors argued against Cr Novak’s NOM because the ARIC report addressing these issues would come to council in a few months.

Cr Ian Tiley described the NOM as “premature” and “window dressing”.

“It’s premature to support the suggested NOM, given that there is a report to be produced as we’ve just discovered,” he said.

“And that in all

likelihood will contain will contain up to date and better information.

“I suggest that this NOM skirts around the primary issues and it’s a fairly ordinary attempt at window dressing.

“I believe it remains important for council to understand why our competent staff are exiting, and hence the need for complete exit interviews.”

Other councillors supported the need for it.

Cr Pickering, who is also the council’s ARIC “observer”, said it was “well timed”.

“Just to actually see real statistics that show that Clarence Valley Council is performing as well as our fellow LGAs in NSW or even better than our fellow LGAs in NSW was good to know.

“We’re talking about Ballina here and from 2023 and 18% staff turnover. In the Clarence Valley we’re looking at 15% which is 3% less.”

Cr Pickering said the figures should quiet claims circulating in the community about staffing issues at the council.

“I don’t know why it’s still a rumour that’s going around in our community,” he said.

Cr Pickering said he had spoken to former staff about working conditions at the council, but suspected these were exaggerated.

“I’ve also been contacted by staff that have left the organisation and I’ve asked them to document why they left the organisation so I could forward it to the ARIC review,” he said.

“And out of the the eight staff members that

that have left the organisation. These are not just rumours.

“There are people that have approached councillors who have stories which are worrying and I believe the best outcome is to leave it to the ARIC report, which I’m hopeful we’ll be comprehensive.”

Cr Novak said the high workforce turn over numbers reflected a trend in the community that had begun to reveal itself as the Covid pandemic subsided.

contacted me about the allegations of bullying and harassment, not one of them has provided any information, not one of them has given me any documentation that I can actually forward to the ARIC review committee.”

Cr Bill Day had concerns the NOM was another another attack on the community group, YambaCAN.

He said the report included in its background information a statement YambaCAN made to the recent NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal hearing.

“I believe that this NOM is more Clarence Valley Council versus YambaCAN,” he said.

Cr Novak made a point of order that this was not the case, but it was overruled.

Cr Day said the council should take no further action on this matter and wait for the ARIC committee’s report.

Cr Greg Clancy said the figures in the NOM reminded him of the expression that “there are lies, damned lies and statistics”.

“We had Cr Pickering say that the statistics were less than the 18% it I think it might have been Ballina Well, apparently in March 2023, our statistics were 17%,” he said.

“But I don’t want to get involved in debating statistics because what I’m really concerned about is the people, the flesh and blood behind these statistics. These are people we’re talking about.”

“People that are working for the organisation, or people

“It is a workers playground at the moment a brute force that is in transition from the digital from mechanical economy to the digital economy to AI,” she said.

“Of course there are going to be a lot of transitions. That is a no brainer.

“And the biggest thing out of all of this people who are leaving the workforce are people who are retiring. That is one of the biggest baby boomer issues happening at the moment.

“So if you can’t accept those reasons that we’ve been given in these reports, not written by us but written by other external agencies, god help us.”

The mayor said the council was ahead of the field when it came to creating an ARIC.

“From June 2024 all NSW councils are expected to have an ARIC committee that is compliant with the States ARIC framework, but CVC have already had a compliant ARIC for two years,” he said.

“The role of ARIC is to provide independent assurance to CVC and through that to the community that governance processes, compliance, risk management and control frameworks, external accountability obligations and overall performance are doing well through monitoring, reviewing and providing advice to the council executive and councillors.”

He said the committee was highly regarded by councillors.

“Most of the work of ARIC is looking at the

NEWS 2 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
Clarence Valley Mayor Peter Johnstone

operational policies and procedures of council which councillors are not normally involved in,” he said.

“ARIC meeting minutes are circulated to councillors as a confidential attachment to the business paper (for example in March 2024), and the chair has met with, and briefed councillors on several occasions.”

He defended the council accepting Cr Novak’s NOM, despite risking a conflict with future ARIC findings.

“Part of the role of a councillor is to ‘(e) to facilitate communication between the local community and the governing body,’ Local Government Act 1993 NSW section 232,” Cr Johnstone said.

“There have been some faulty figures being circulated on social media and I expect that Cr Novak was keen that the correct figures were obtained and made available to the public.

He said the erroneous figure that was quoted on social media was to take

the number of staff who had left for any reason (including those on fixed term contracts that had come to the end of their contract) and divide this by the full time equivalent staff to get a figure of 17% turnover.

“The correct formula is given in the business paper and involves dividing by the total number of staff, not the FTE,” he said.

He said the figures reflected well on the performance of the general manager.

“It would therefore

appear that as Laura has become established as the GM, staff turnover has dropped,” Cr Johnstone said.

“This is not quite the narrative that some have been pushing.”

He said, as the report said the “great resignation” that is widely reported as a global phenomenon following COVID was also apparent in Australian local councils, but didn’t affect CVC as much as other Victorian and NSW councils.

The Australian Local

Government Association has recognised the difficulties facing council’s, particularly in the regions.

IN 2022 ALGA president Linda Scott said around nine in ten Australian councils were now Ms Scott said there are a range of factors that made it harder for councils to recruit, train and retain suitably skilled workers.

“Housing affordability and availability is an ongoing issue, particularly for regional and rural councils

looking to attract specialist staff from outside their local community,” Cr Scott said.

“Retaining the staff they already have is also a big challenge for many councils, given the current competition for skills within the private sector and also other levels of government.”

“Nationally the turnover rate in local government is about 15 percent, and it’s closer to 20 percent in rural areas.”

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Clarence Valley mayor Peter Johnstone says an independent committee had engaged management consultant Centium since January to investigate staff issues including bullying at the council. He expects a report to come to council well before the September council election.

Yamba residents turned up the volume with their favourite chants when A Current Affair came calling last week.

The secretary of the Yamba Community Action Network, Lynne Cairns, said not even some wet weather could keep residents indoors.

“Yamba CAN sincerely thanks all those who could attend,” she said.

“It was such a fantastic effort, particularly, due to the inclement weather, we cannot thank you enough.

“This is how we can, and need to make a difference.”

Mrs Cairns said residents were encouraged to shout out their chants: “STOP

THE FILL” -- “DON’T DROWN OUR TOWN” for the cameras.

“It was so sincere,” she said. “This is something obviously close to the hearts of people in West Yamba.”

The segment aired on A Current Affair on Tuesday night, but anyone who missed it can catch up on A Current

Yamba chants makes ACA

Affair’s website, https://

Ms Cairns said show filmed at the Park Ave development entrance and did some interview. They moved to Yamba Rd and interviewed a number of residents who were affected in the flooding of February and March 2022.

Yamba residents continue to be dismayed at the number of developments being approved for the Yamba flood plain.

Ms Cairns said the only way for these developments to go ahead is for massive amounts of fill to be dumped on the sites to allow houses to

be built above the flood level.

She said some of approved developments and sites that have been filled in Yamba include: a 161 small lot subdivision in Carrs Drive, Yamba (3 stages – Parklands); a 193 manufactured housing estate at 90 Carrs Drive, Yamba (Clifton); a 136lot manufactured housing estate at 8 Park Avenue, Yamba; a 52 senior living small lot subdivision at 75 Carrs Drive Yamba; a 78 manufactured housing estate at Orion Drive, Yamba (71 two storey and seven single storey buildings); a 72-lot subdivision in the Quays estate, Yamba (stage 5 yet to be released);

a 6 lot subdivision in Sullivans Road, Yamba; 84 units at 4 Freeburn Street, Yamba (Caroona aged care facility); 17 apartments at 6 Yamba Road, Yamba (Habitat – 3 storey buildings); and 14 townhouses at 3 Mulgi Street, Yamba.

Proposed developments in West Yamba are a 284 small lot subdivision at 52 – 54 Miles Street, corner of Carrs Drive, Yamba (Kahuna), and one currently on exhibition is a 216 manufactured housing estate at 120 Carrs Drive, Yamba (Clifton).

Residents say ion 2022 stormwater inundated existing properties and homes on the floodplain,.

The amount of fill increased the instances of flash flooding impacting properties during heavy rain that are decreased property values.

“Yamba’s infrastructure and road network was unable to cope with current and proposed development, the negative impact of more trucks dumping more fill which is reportedly cracking house walls and fences, resulting in home insurance being either cost prohibitive, or unobtainable, for residents,” Ms Cairns said.

In early March residents raised a petition to convince Clarence Valley Council to stop approving developments on the floodplain.

Ms Cairns said by signing the petition, people request that the Mayor and councillors of the Clarence Valley ensure three key aspects are actioned:

• Council prepares a planning proposal for submission to the Department of Planning and Environment

requesting that the vacant lands, which do not have development approval for subdivision, in the West Yamba Urban Release Area (WYURA) be rezoned from Residential (R1) to Conservation (C2) zoning or a mix of Conservation (C2) and Rural (RU2) based on the impacts of further development on the environment and the risk to human life and property from future flooding.

• Council writes to the NSW Minister for Planning requesting the Minister to prevent any further development on the west Yamba flood plain that will negatively impact on flooding in the whole of west Yamba township.

• Council’s engagement and notification of all matters is current, transparent, accessible, and inclusive for all Clarence Valley Council community members. To sign the petition visit https://www. stop-the-filling-of-landin-west-yamba?source_ location=psf_petitions

Digital divide reduced with laptop giveaway

Grafton was doing her TAFE studies the hard way, without a laptop and no chance of being able to afford one.

That all changed last week when she headed to Woodburn to receive a special gift.

One hundred refurbished laptops were packed and stacked, ready and waiting at the Woodburn Hub last week, to be distributed to those who normally couldn’t afford what has become a basic need for every household.

Thanks to the work of

Good360, a charity that connects unsold consumer goods with people in need, the consortium of neighbourhood centres on the Northern Rivers and the QANTAS Regional Grant program, many people will be able to ‘go digital’ now.

“We are giving away 100 refurbished laptops, dongles and SIM cards, to provide data, “ said Liz Finlayson of Good360.

“We are a collector of goods with lots of contacts and spread the love all over Australia.”

“It’s just like Christmas,” she said.

“It will help me with my TAFE studies in early childhood.”

Since February this year, Deborah has had to write up her essays and then head to the TAFE library and type it up using a computer there.

“Now I can do it at home,” she said.

“I hadn’t even slept a night there,” she said. “If I had delayed my move by a week, I would have been ok.”

Now she has a new laptop, which will save her eyes when she is watching movies and will allow her daughter to do some beauty courses online.

“We cover the areas from South Grafton up to Murwillumbah,” she said.

“And we allocated people

Jamie Cooper of the Mid Richmond Neighbourhood Centre is the representative of the consortium of Northern Rivers neighbourhood centres and was pleased to be able to hand the laptops to those who needed them most.

working in the Recovery Support Services, to nominate those they are working with, to receive a laptop.

“We thought that was the fairest way.”

Deborah was thrilled with her new gift.

This will make up for the two laptops she lost when her caravan was involved in an accident in Ballina during the floods.

Kerri Mann of East Coraki had only just moved into her Woodburn home two years ago when the flood hit.

Chantelle Ginger, Good360’s Head of Customer Success and Memberships said the digital divide in Australia is a problem.

“It’s a lot greater than people might understand,” she said.

“The digital need is a need, not just a want.”

NEWS 4 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024 Janelle Saffin MP MEMBER FOR LISMORE Authorised by Janelle Saffin MP. Funded using Parliamentary entitlements. Gets things done I love working with our community to make a difference 02 6621 3624 - 55 Carrington Street (PO BOX 52), Lismore NSW 2480
Yamba residents turned out in force when A Current Affair came to town last week to do a story on development on the Yamba flood plain.
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Ten years after it ceased trading a Yamba icon turned eyesore, Gormans Big Oyster Restaurant, red tape is about the only thing holding the building up.

The latest chapter in the saga to get rid of the rapidly decaying building at the eastern end of Yamba Bay, played out at Clarence Valley Council’s March 26 meeting, where every aspect of the confusion of ownership, native title and land rights received an airing.

Cr Ian Tiley sought to clear up the confusion which has dogged plans for the site since the restaurant sold under the hammer for $2,005,000 in September 2020.

He arrived with a letter from the CEO of the Yamba Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation, Billy Walker, penned that day, which informed the council the corporation was in discussion with the site owners to arrive at an Indigenous Land Use Agreement.

The letter revealed the corporation and the owners of the site, Swell 77 Pty Ltd, had been meeting for several years and had reached an agreement to move forward with an ILUA for the redevelopment of the site.

“Please advise council that the corporation have already had ILUA discussions with the owner in relation to access for the redevelopment of the Gorman’s old restaurant and have reached an agreement to move forward with an ILUA for the redevelopment of the site,” Cr Tiley said, reading from the letter.

On that basis, Cr Tiley moved an alternative motion: That council note that the Yaegl Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation have already

Yamba eyesore still standing

had Indigenous Land Use Agreement discussions with the owner in relation to access for the redevelopment of the Gormans old restaurant site.

Cr Tiley said an ILUA would solve the problem which has dogged the site since the sale, that the restaurant site is landlocked by the surrounding Hickey Island Reserve, and the owner has no legal access to Harbour Street.

The Hickey Island Reserve is Crown Land owned by the NSW Government, meaning consent from Crown Lands was required to traverse the Hickey Island Reserve to access the land.

The Yaegl People have been granted non-exclusive native title rights and interests by the Federal Court over the Hickey Island Reserve.

The adjoining land parcel to the north of the Gorman’s site is owned by the Birrigan Gargle Local Aboriginal Land Council, and their consent was also required if any part of their land were to be accessed as part of the demolition or redevelopment.

Cr Tiley said the corporation believed council did not need to become involved.

“They’re saying that the officers recommendation is unnecessary and indeed redundant, because they’ve been negotiating and have reached agreement,” he said “And the bottom line is that the developer can’t do a damn thing until he gets access. And it’s Native Title.”

But some councillors, including Cr Karen Toms, were not convinced.

She said council staff had briefed councillors ahead of the meeting that for the development to proceed, the Member for Clarence, Richie Williamson, would need to advocate for the State Government to begin

a process to demolish the former restaurant.

The recommendation from the council officers also called for a council to write to the Minister for Lands and Property, Steve Kamper, requesting that the State government engage with the Yaegl Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation RNTBC and their legal representatives to agree on a process to resolve the current need to demolish the former Gorman’s Restaurant for public health and safety reasons and to secure long-term legal access for Swell 77 Pty Ltd to access their property.

Cr Toms said the staff view was Crown Lands must be involved in the ILUA process because the Yaegl people and Swell 77 did not have the power to grant access to the site across the surrounding land.

The council’s general manager Laura Black advised the meeting that Crown Land must be involved.

“Certainly that’s the officers recommendation as a means of resolving this matter is that Crown Land does become involved

if they are not already involved,” she said.

“They need to be involved for council’s order to demolish to be achieved.”

But Cr Tiley argued this was not the case and the council’s native title officer was mistaken in his views on the need for Crown Land involvement.

There was also confusion among councillors about the orders covering the proposed demolition and new building on the restaurant site.

Cr Tiley mentioned a development application for the site, but Cr Toms, with a point of order, reminded him there was no DA for the work.

Cr Tiley said he was aware of the situation because of the contact he had with the traditional owners.

“The traditional owners commence the ILUA process with the development before the Crown gets involved,” he said.

“The council officer that I referred to earlier is the council’s native title officer who wrote the report before us today.

“And regrettably, he didn’t

check to see if any ILUA discussions had commenced with traditional owners. He should have done that.

“TOs (traditional owners) were not advised of this business item, which is regrettable, and were not contacted by the same officer before the report was written. Cr Toms is wrong.”

Put to a vote, council voted 6-3 against Cr Tiley’s motion and proceeded to debate a foreshadowed motion from Cr Toms to accept the officer’s recommendation.

Cr Steve Pickering moved to amend the motion, to include Cr Tiley’s defeated motion, which was was achieved with a third point to note the letter from Mr Walker.

Cr Toms and the motion’s second Cr Alison Whaites, were happy to include the point in their motion.

Cr Toms said her motion would allow the council to move ahead with the demolition of a dangerous building.

Cr Pickering said it had been 10 years since the restaurant closed and the decaying building remained in the middle of the Yamba tourism precinct.

“This dilapidated, dangerous building just sitting there, which council requested was demolished by September last year,” he said.

He said he did not expect the building to come down any time soon.

“I appreciate Billy Walker and the Yaegl traditional owners have been working with Swell 77 Pty Ltd to come up with a solution, but the ILUA may have been agreed to, but it hasn’t been signed,” he said.

“If the ILUA had been signed and Crown Lands had been part of that, this would have been a different debate.

“The building hasn’t been demolished. And

I’m expecting it still to be standing there in September this year.”

Cr Debrah Novak said the history of the agreements over the site and the surrounding land suggested to her that Crown Lands must be involved in any decision to move forward.

“It’s important that we have now recognised through a letter given to Cr Tiley that the Yaegl traditional owners have now commenced that pathway for a discussion at Crown Lands,” she said

“It says in black and white that they still need to be at the table for conversation.”

Other councillors were worried the council was not respecting indigenous people and interfering in a process they had already begun.

Cr Greg Clancy described Cr Toms’ motion as “a bit rude”.

“We’re basically interfering in a process that’s already happening,” he said.

“The Yaegl Traditional Owners and Swell 77 would be more than aware that once they sign an ILUA, that that also involves the Crown Lands and if it’s managed by the council, the council.

“So this is in a sense, it’s a non-motion because it’s already happening and I think to have this motion can be seen by the Yaegl traditional owners as being a little bit intrusive or a bit rude when they’re actually doing the very thing that this motion is calling for.”

Cr Bill Day agreed and said the council should show more patience and respect to the Yaegl traditional owners.

The council voted 6-3 for Cr Toms’ motion, with the voting recorded as Crs Johnstone, Novak, Pickering, Smith, Toms, Whaites for. Against: Crs Clancy, Day, Tiley.

Council backs Save Ulmarra Ferry petition

A NSW Government proposal to close the Ulmarra to Southgate ferry service in June will be disastrous for farming and tourism industries say local councillors.

Clarence Valley Council voted unanimously to urge the NSW Government to rethink a proposal revealed late last month to close the ferry service on June 10 when the current vessel’s operating certificate ended.

Cr Steve Pickering brought the matter as a late item of business to last Tuesday’s council meeting, where council quickly accepted it as a late item.

“I would like to move

if it’s permissible by my colleagues that the council number one, make the Save the Ulmarra Ferry petition available at the Grafton and Maclean Clarence Valley Council customer service counters for signing by concerned members of the community and to promote the petition petition’s availability through a media release and social media posts,” Cr Pickering said. He said closing the ferry service would affect people beyond the Clarence Valley.

“It’s a tourist attraction,” he said. “It’s used by people that commute from Casino down the Summerland Way from Kyogle, that come down to the Clarence Valley.

“It’s also used by emergency services families, farmers, tradies, families, school kids, all sorts of people use this ferry.

“A lot of people use it to get from the from the Ulmarra side of the river to the Grafton to go and access appointments of the Grafton Base Hospital.

“It’s a valuable piece of community infrastructure.”

He said the Ulmarra community had raised a petition and it was rapidly gaining signatures, with a target of 10,000, which would allow Member for Clarence Richie Williamson to present the petition to NSW Parliament in May.

The motion’s seconder,

Cr Debrah Novak, said this was another example of governments cutting services in the Clarence Valley and Lower Clarence.

“It’s concerning that it’s been done without consultation,” she said.

“My understanding is that while we have a huge number of local residents and tourists using the service because we do promote it as an active tourism activity, to cross on the ferry, which is quite lovely I might add.

“One of the big losers in this if the ferry is closed, is actually the sugar industry, because even though the cane trucks don’t use it, their buggies do.

“If they close that ferry

service, what will happen is the buggies most likely will have to go on a truck and then they will have to go through Grafton.

“What it does, it adds on a cost to farmers that are already being screwed down for their price on their product. So it’s not fair.

“We have a state government that should be looking after its primary industries.

“It should be looking after its rural regional residents and it’s just not acceptable that they think it’s okay to take another service away from us.”

NEWS 6 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
Gormans Seafood Restaurant was a Yamba icon, but the decaying building has become an eyesore in the middle of the tourist hotspot since it ceased trading more than a decade ago. Former Nationals MP Steve Cansdell has made Ulmarra his home in recent years and turned back the clock to his days as a sign writer to help the community campaign to keep its ferry service. He re-purposed many political campaign corflutes for his latest venture.

Totem poles tell the history of the area

Residents and visitors to Evans Head may have noticed a new art installation as they walk along the river’s edge.

Three totem poles now grace the area, thanks to the Evans Head Progress Association, Richmond Valley Council and the work of Broadwater sculptor, Greg Bowering and New Zealand sculptor Brett Sutherland.

The three individual totems each represent a different aspect of Evans Head.

“The sculptors have used animal-based metaphors such as the osprey, snapper and tiger prawn, as well as capturing the Bandjalang three brothers story,” a council spokesperson said.

“As well as making the totems aesthetically pleasing, the artworks will be durable against the elements.”

The totems are made

from hardwood poles and are 3.2 metres high and 0.4 metres in diameter.

The three totems are:

The River Pole –portraying the birdlife and aquatic life of the river. On this pole is the osprey, the kingfsher, chestnut teal and darter. Below in the river part of the totem is a fathead and a stingray.

The Fishing Pole –representing the fshing

industry of the town, past and present from the beginnings of commercial prawning in 1948 and harvesting of the eastern rock lobster

through to commercial and recreational fshers today. A pelican stands on top the mooring bollard shape of the pole. Below is an anchor, chain and fshing hook on a line overlaying a snapper and jewfsh. A packhorse crayfsh and tiger prawn swim near the bottom of the pole. The Indigenous Pole – This tells the story of the beginnings of people at Evans Head. The three brothers who, with their grandmother, settled the area of the Evans River as told by elder Simone Barker, handed down from her father, respected elder Laurie Wilson. The pole is in the shape of a canoe and shows Gumi, the grandmother at the top with the three brothers Mumoon, Yahbileh and Birren below. A digging stick, spear and woomera are shown on the sides of the canoe and a stone axe is represented at the base.

NEWS 7 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent

Ballina Hospital Auxiliary

Thursday 28 March. The stall had our usual display of cooking and craft donated by our members and other generous people.

The Stall and Raffe we’re very successful raising just over $1500. The Raffe was won by Katrina Ticket Number 03510.

Many thanks to the Ballina community for their generous support and also a thank you to our members who worked on the Stall and the cooks and crafters who produced a very colourful array of goods.

At our last meeting, we approved for purchase approximately $75,000 of equipment for our hospital, including items for the Renal unit, Rehabilitation and the General Ward. Without the ongoing support of the Ballina community, this would not be possible, again thank you.

Our next meeting will be held on Tuesday 16 April commencing at 1.30pm in the Solarium at Ballina Hospital. All most welcome.

Diary of a Flood Survivor

Beyond excited is how many Woodburn residents are feeling at the moment.

That’s because there has been movement at the station. The petrol station, that is.

For the past two years, we have watched the Caltex petrol station stand forlorn with cyclone fencing around it, as if to say, ‘Nup, not interested’.

Just recently, however, there were ripples of rumours surrounding the space and one of them was that Caltex had sold the business and land to another company.

And it seems this rumour has hit gold.

Metro Petroleum are preparing to trade in Woodburn.

It doesn’t take a journalist to fnd this out. Just a simple walk past and you can see all the signage already up.

And so the residents


No longer will we have to calculate if a quarter of a quarter of a tank is enough to get us to Broadwater (which

when we tell them they still have another ten minute journey before they can get petrol.

No longer will the petrol station look so

has TWO petrol stations just quietly) or Evans Head to fll up before we have to head off to Ballina, Lismore or Casino.

No longer will we be stopped by travellers passing through, who have only pulled off the bypass because they are running on vapours, only to see the look of desperation in their eyes

forlorn and stand as a reminder of what the food has taken away from our little village.

Now, without sounding greedy, our next goal is to get the local IGA back on its feet, so buying groceries won’t be such a thought out chore or negotiation with neighbours and their pantries, as well.

Little steps.

NEWS 8 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024 Authorised by Richie Williamson. Funded using parliamentar y entitlements. Tel: 6643 1244 Richie Williamson MP Tr y the new Casino R ail Trail! Congratulations on the opening of the Casino to Bentley section of the Nor ther n Rivers Rail Trail. What a great healthy asset for our community!

Bindaree Food Group Industry Dinner Elevates Casino Beef Week 2024

Casino, NSW - Casino Beef Week 2024, a pinnacle event in the Australian beef industry’s calendar, proudly introduces the Bindaree Food Group Industry Dinner as one of this year’s festival highlights. Set for Thursday, 23rd May, at The Clydesdale Motel and Steakhouse, this event promises an evening brimming with gourmet cuisine, insightful discussions, and unmatched networking opportunities, starting at 6:00 pm.

The evening will commence with a welcoming reception featuring sophisticated canapes and a welcome drink, setting the stage for a night of celebration and camaraderie. Attendees will then be treated to a threecourse gourmet dinner spotlighting Bindaree’s premium beef products, a testament to the company’s commitment to favor and quality.

A highlight of the dinner will be an address by Andrew McDonald, CEO of Bindaree Food Group, who will

share the company’s achievements and its forward-looking vision. Adding to the evening’s allure, Larry Anthony, former Federal Minister and MP for Richmond, will host an industry panel discussion. This session aims to explore the current and future state of the beef industry with insights from renowned industry leaders.

Brody Lisha, President of Casino Beef Week, emphasized the dinner’s signifcance, “The Bindaree Food Group Industry Dinner is

more than an event; it’s a homage to the heart and soul of our industry. It’s a showcase of innovation and community spirit.”

Andrew McDonald refected on the deeprooted connection between Bindaree Food Group and the Casino region, stating, “Our operations began here at the Casino Food Co-Op in 1981. Though we’ve expanded, our bond with Casino remains integral. This dinner celebrates our 43-year relationship with the community.”

Tickets for the event

are available at $70 each from 2nd April, offering a unique opportunity to engage with the beef industry’s vibrancy and connect with peers in a prestigious setting.

The Casino Food Co-op Casino Beef Week is renowned for celebrating the beef industry, its contributors, and rural lifestyle, drawing attendees from across the nation. Bindaree Food Group, a key player in the Australian protein solutions sector, continues to invest in the region, demonstrating

a commitment to its heritage and community. With extensive operations across Australia and investments in facility upgrades, Bindaree stands at the forefront of the global market while maintaining its local ethos in the Northern Rivers region.

As Casino Beef Week 2024 approaches, the Bindaree Food Group Industry Dinner is set to be a memorable event, reinforcing the strength and unity of the beef industry in Australia.

NEWS 9 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent

“Leemo has views on just about anything”


‘Mum Jane’, explain to me the de nition of a good person (or a cat?) ‘Well ‘Leems’ to me, I reckon goodness is expressed through being kind & open in yourself and showing consideration & thought for others. It can be as easy as o ering to let someone go ahead of you in a Supermarket queue, donating to a charity or a street busker, patting a Puppy, saying hello to someone you don’t know who looks sad, making treats for neighbors, or even stu like making your time available for someone you care about.’ Hmmm! I still have questions. I’ll ponder! ‘Mum, are YOU a kind person AND give me a true and honest answer.’ She looked a wee bit startled and told me she would have to think about my question, and that perhaps a cup of tea would be in order. Okeydokey, done. ‘OK Leems, I WILL be frank with you. I like to believe I’m generally a good kinda person, but I also believe I fail dismally at times & end up feeling quite ashamed of myself & out of sorts.’ Ooooh… now that came out of the blue; I’d better keep going. ‘OK Mum, tell me about times you felt like this, and WHY!’ She looked most forlorn, and spoke. ‘Leems, I confess; I have always had a totally naïve attitude in believing everything I’m told as being Gospel truth. Even as a young person, due to my parents, I never ever had a reason to disbelieve something someone told me. Stu like being told that if a

boy kissed me I would have a baby; this was via my teachers when I was at an impressionable age, hence I didn’t get kissed for a VERY long time. (What would I do with a baby anyhow. I was going to Africa?) As I grew older, but not much wiser, my naivety stayed, by me repeating what I’m told by one person to another person without knowing the authenticity of same. So, my confession about sometimes not being a truly good person comes down, basically, to listening to and repeating ‘GOSSIP’ Leems, straight and simple; I have been guilty of repeating utter nonsense, and that’s why at times I don’t feel as good a person as I want to be. HOWEVER, as you know, ‘cos I’ve told you, I’m now avoiding situations, people and stu which have lead to some of the despondency I have experienced in my heart AND, it’s working; for me. In fact, Leems, whilst you can be so irritating at times, I nd your company reassuring, trustworthy and comforting in my life, for which I love you.’ OMG, this is too emotional for a simple down-to-earth feline, BUT, one more question. ‘Mum, WHAT IS GOSSIP truly?’ Her eyes rolled. ‘Leems, I’ve told you this before when you overheard 2 of your buddies say you had a fake tail ‘cos it is too glorious to be genuine. THAT is uninformed Gossip. Had they pulled your tail they would have realised if was REAL and actually attached to your body. Remember that time? So, Leems, GOSSIP is generally negative talk applying to others and can be damaging, normally misinformed, malicious and hurtful. Gottit? I believe the moral of my story Leems, is to, as an example, ‘pull the tail’ and check out the truth’ before you pass judgement on any situation, conversation or person. AND, Leems, it’s time for you to watch ‘Bluey’. YIPPEE…with happy purrsies, Leemo.

Resilient Lismore receives full ‘Repair to Return’ funding

Resilient Lismore has welcomed the fnalisation of its funding deed with the NSW Reconstruction Authority, which will enable the continuation of its ‘Repair to Return’ program. Resilient Lismore Executive Director Elly Bird said that in 2024 the organisation is scaling up its ‘Repair to Return’ project to best utilise the $5 million funding.

“Repair to Return was formerly known as the ‘Two Rooms Project’, which used volunteer labour to construct walls in two rooms of badly food-damaged homes,” Ms Bird said.

“Repair to Return has evolved as we have secured funding, and now we engage qualifed tradespeople to do the work. Our scope has expanded to provide partial repair of homes, including kitchens, bathrooms and other critical repairs.”

“After nearly two years of our home repair work being privately funded by local organisations and philanthropists we are very grateful that the NSW Reconstruction Authority is providing this additional funding so that we can continue to help people return to safe and secure homes.”

“It’s a signifcant milestone for us and

we extend our gratitude to Premier Minns and his government; to the Emergency Services Minister Jihad Dibb and of course to Janelle Saffn the Member for Lismore who secured this funding commitment for our work.”

“The Repair to Return program provides qualifed trades assistance to owneroccupiers who were living in the affected property at the time of the disaster and who still need to live there.

“We prioritise people who can’t progress their recovery on their own, we prioritise vulnerable people, and we are trying to help as many people as we can. We work in Lismore and in downstream communities, including Coraki, Woodburn, Wardell, Bungawalbin and others - we have a regional footprint.” Ms Bird said.

“We are not doing renovations or total rebuilds, but we will help people repair their homes so they have somewhere safe and secure to live. There is a high level of need so there might be a waitlist depending on the situation and the work that is required. We can’t guarantee that we can help everyone but we are doing our best to help as many people as we can.”

“We can provide labour

and materials, or we can help people use the materials they already have. We can help to restore essential plumbing; repair and restore kitchens; assist with electrical work; resheet walls; assist with furniture and whitegoods - and more. People just need to talk to us to see what we can do.

Ms Bird said there was still a mountain of work to do for the Northern Rivers to build back and develop resilience for future events.

“This is a multi-year, longtailed recovery process,” she said. “We understand that people from outside the region might think, ‘Oh, that was two years ago, it’s all over now’, but that is far from the truth.

“Lismore and the Northern Rivers are on the way back but there is still plenty that needs to be done: homes that need to be repaired, people who need assistance, and businesses that need support.

“Resilient Lismore is here for the long haul because this is our community: our staff and volunteers are from this community. We love it, we are here to help the people we live alongside, and we are committed to helping our region not just to survive but to thrive.

“We are grateful to the Reconstruction Authority

and to our partners and supporters for their ongoing commitment to our community. We are particularly grateful to the local people who have provided signifcant funding to get us to where we are now, and who have helped us to help so many people live in safer housing.”

Amanda Leck, Head of Adaptation, Mitigation and Reconstruction at the NSW Reconstruction Authority, said supporting the Repair to Return program was a practical example of the organisation backing a community-led initiative that clearly works.

“The work in Lismore is not just about buying back homes and rolling out our Resilient Lands Program, it’s about restoring a community and maintaining its unique identity for the long term,” she said.

“We know we can’t stop disasters from occurring, but we can do more to prepare and prevent the worst of their impacts.

“It’s critical we’re better prepared for future disasters with Councils and local community leaders and will develop local Disaster Adaptation Plans that consider all possible options.”


NEWS 10 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
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“FAMILY,” once said Jenna Simms, “is the only six-letter word in which unconditional love, exasperation, and fat-out feuds can coexist. Sometimes, the only thing we can muster up is, “It’s complicated.” Complicated, being an understatement for some of the peace-stealing ‘syndicates’ you see that pass for families.

Funnily enough, the Hungarian word for family is ‘csalad’, which is very apt, when you consider the combinations of fruit and vegetables (often in the very same bowl) we all have to put up with, if not fnd ourselves in the presence of, whenever that strange collective of people, called family, catch up in the same confnes.

Ironically, the English word for family stems from the old Latin term ‘familia’ which means ‘slaves or servants of the household.’ And as such, I don’t think there is even one person among us that hasn’t felt enslaved at some stage of their life by the house‘hold’ they found themselves growing up in. That is not to be disrespectful of the people or surrounds that helped to mould us, but to merely shed intricate light on the shared blessing, and curse that family units can be.

Like many ‘given’ cultural constructs that are being reconsidered, if not fully recreated (and sometimes rightly so) in modern times, that of ‘the family’ is arguably one that has received the most scrutiny of them all. Like an all-inclusive, and ever shifting threedimensional Rubik’s cube, the once rigid construct of family, has

Tweed Shire Council’s Affordable Housing Strategy

changed more in the last 50 years than it did in the 250 years leading up to it. And this is certainly not a bad thing.

As Richard Bach, author of Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah, once said, “The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other’s life. Rarely do members of one family grow up under the same roof.” And even when they do, it is the all-important ‘respect and joy in each other’s life’ that constitute the oft-missing glue to the deep bond that defnes the most loving families.

When I think of my own upbringing, and the family unit I was a part of, I’m not sure they understood everything I did, but the one thing I do know, is that they supported me, without gripe or snipe, and they had my back, whether I deserved it or not, and for that, I couldn’t be more eternally grateful.

Like a slowly developing polaroid picture, I’ve often turned a comment over in my mind by Jennifer Donnelly, who once said, “Together in our house, in the frelight, we are the world made small.”

Small but infnitely, and intricately made large, large enough to acquire a perceived relevance despite all externals that might suggest otherwise; because our families are a surface, if not a magnifying glass that refect and project at our feet, the world in all its myriad splendour. Or as Pierce Brown once suggested, “Home isn’t where you’re from, it’s where you fnd light when all grows dark.”

Tweed Shire Council is actively engaging the community to gather insights and solutions for the development of a new draft Affordable Housing Strategy, aimed at addressing the pressing housing crisis in the Tweed region. Declaring a housing emergency in 2021 in response to unprecedented challenges in housing affordability and accessibility, the Council is now focused on formulating a strategy to provide sustainable, affordable housing for the community’s future.

The Tweed Affordable Housing Strategy is being developed alongside the Growth Management and Housing Strategy 2041, which identifes areas for housing diversity, including affordable and social housing. Once completed, this strategy will offer clear guidance to Council and community housing providers on unlocking

new opportunities for affordable housing.

In Phase 3 of the strategy development, the Council is seeking direct input from the community through a survey. This survey aims to gather opinions on integrating new social and affordable housing developments within local neighbourhoods, the necessity of higher density housing for fnancial viability, potential solutions to enhance the supply and choice of social and affordable housing, and alternative methods to support low-income earners in accessing housing and essential services.

Mayor Chris Cherry emphasized the importance of community participation in addressing this critical issue, urging residents to complete the survey. The Council recognizes the urgent need for affordable and social housing, particularly

considering the high rate of homelessness and the growing number of individuals and families experiencing housing insecurity in the region.

According to Iain Lonsdale, Coordinator of Council’s Strategic Planning and Urban Design Unit, the Tweed is confronted with concerning statistics, including rental and mortgage stress due to housing supply shortages and escalating property prices. Currently, only 2.9% of total dwellings in the Tweed are designated as affordable and social housing, with nearly half of households experiencing rental stress.

The Council is committed to collaborating with government bodies, industry stakeholders, housing providers, and the community to address the housing crisis effectively. The defnition of affordable housing encompasses rental properties accessible to

households with very low, low, or median incomes, allowing them to meet essential living costs.

The development of the Affordable Housing Strategy progresses through four phases, with Phase 4 focusing on drafting the strategy for public exhibition later this year. Community input is vital throughout this process, and residents are encouraged to participate by completing the online survey available on Council’s Your Say Tweed page or providing feedback via email, mail, or in-person at Council offces.

By actively engaging the community and stakeholders, Tweed Shire Council aims to develop a comprehensive Affordable Housing Strategy that addresses the diverse needs of residents and ensures the availability of safe, secure, and affordable housing options in the Tweed region.

NEWS 12 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
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The Anne Street Garden Villas are a series of social housing dwellings located in Southport, Gold Coast. (Photo credit: Christopher Frederick Jones & Anna O’Gorman Architects). BELOW: Outside area of Anne Street Garden Villas, a social housing demonstration project in Southport Gold Coast (Photo credit: Christopher Frederick Jones & Anna O’Gorman Architects).


A TAFE NSW Ballina graduate proves it’s never too late to follow your passion after switching careers from a retail worker to a nursing graduate at 45 years of age. Spring Grove local, Crelleain Robertson, was able to balance her career change with her family life by enrolling in TAFE NSW’s fee-free Diploma of Nursing in 2023.

Crelleain’s story refects a broader trend with job mobility hitting 9.5% in 2023 for the second year in a row, the highest rate in a decade according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. Even industries typically considered stable faced signifcant shifts after a period of workplace shutdown due to Covid, leading more people to reconsider their future career path.

When considering the change after a retail career spanning 30 years, Crelleain credits the

fee-free Diploma course with making her decision to return to study easier.

“I’ve wanted to pursue nursing for some time, and was even accepted into a Bachelor of Nursing, but the timing didn’t work for my family. I still had kids in primary school, and the thought of balancing full-time university study with work was too much at that time.

“I was considering different pathways and found I could pursue enrolled nursing through TAFE NSW. Cost was a consideration for our family, so when I discovered the course was fee-free it was such a relief. Everything lined up – by this stage, my kids were more independent, and I was able to balance my studies with work,”

Crelleain said.

The health care and social assistance sector stands as Australia’s single largest employer,

boasting over 2.2 million workers, of which 76 per cent are women. TAFE NSW Head Teacher of Allied Health and Nursing, Colleen Gaudron, said she’s been pleased to see an increase in matureage women switching careers to study nursing particularly as the demand for

pursue their career goals.

TAFE NSW offers the perfect environment as we provide fexible study options and a range of support services.

“Most women will underestimate the valuable skills they bring not only to the classroom but to a new profession. Mature-age students often excel in nursing due to their extensive life experiences.

confdence in the clinical environment, and she has recently been successful in achieving an Assistant in Nursing position at St Joseph’s Nursing Home in Lismore.

nurses increases, with a projected shortfall of 123,000 nurses in Australia by 2030.

“Many women tell me that nursing is something they’ve always wanted to do but then life got in the way,” she said. “Once their children become older and more self-suffcient, it becomes their time to

“They bring an array of essential skills that are transferable to nursing – communication, time management, working in a team, collaborating, and confict resolution. Often, they’ll have an increased capacity to remain calm under pressure and provide the younger students with support that fosters a positive experience for all,” Ms Gaudron said.

Crelleain said the hands-on experience she’s gained throughout the course so far has further boosted her

“My experience in retail has translated to nursing, allowing me to communicate with colleagues and connect with patients, but since I started at TAFE NSW, I’ve learned so much about the body and the issues that affect people’s health.

“I recently performed a blood transfusion, which was exciting. Through my work placements in aged care and on the cardiovascular ward at Lismore Base Hospital, I’m honing my hands-on skills with the support of experienced nurses,” she said.

All healthcare courses at TAFE NSW are currently fee-free.

NEWS 13 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent p.a. * *The rate of return on your investment is current at 1 December 2023. The rate of return is reviewed and determined monthly and may increase or decrease each month. The applicable distribution for any given month is paid at the start of the following month. The rate of return is not guaranteed and is determined by the future revenue of the Credit Fund and may be lower than expected. An investment in the Credit Fund is not a bank deposit, and investors risk losing some or all of their principal investment. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. Withdrawal rights are subject to liquidity and may be delayed or suspended. View our website for further information. La Trobe Financial Asset Management Limited ACN 007 332 363 Australian Financial Services Licence 222213 Australian Credit Licence 222213 is the responsible entity of the La Trobe Australian Credit Fund ARSN 088 178 321. It is important for you to consider the Product Disclosure Statement for the Credit Fund in deciding whether to invest, or to continue to invest, in the Credit Fund. You can read the PDS and the Target Market Determinations on our website or ask for a copy by calling us on 13 80 10. For a full list of our Awards, please visit the Awards and Ratings page on our website. Andrew Lowrey is an Authorised Representative of La Trobe Financial Asset Management Limited. No personal advice is given by La Trobe Financial or its Authorised Representatives. Give your money a raise. Contact our local Authorised Representative: Andrew Lowrey Cedar Financial Pty Ltd (02) 6621 2258 1800 818 818 l 2023 BESTCREDITFUND MORTGAGES BESTOFTHE BEST2023 Tahillia Clairvoyant 0401 370 844 TV, Radio and national columnist! Readings for worldwide famous people! DON’T MISS OUT ON YOUR READING! I will be in Lismore, Byron Bay & Ballina from the 15th - 18th of April BOOK NOW to avoid any disappointment Call Tahillia on NOW is the time to buy From $325,000. On care services 24/7
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Samantha’s Book

Building brighter beginnings for Tenterfeld pre-schoolers

Triumph over Tragedy

Title: Left for Dead

Author: Laurence Barlow, Samantha Barlow and Sue Williams

Price: $27.99

Publisher: Penguin By Samantha Elley

Since she could remember, Samantha Barlow wanted to be a police o cer.

Eventually that dream comes true and she was the youngest recruit in her year.

With her enthusiasm and personality, she raced through the ranks and was even tipped to be heading to the top as one of the country’s rst female police commissioners.

It was on the way to work one morning in the early hours, that her life took a sudden and dramatic change.

e rst she knew of her attacker was when she received a massive blow on the back of her

Preschoolers in Tenterfeld, in the New England region, are set for an easier transition into primary school thanks to free health and development checks which are now being delivered through early childhood education and care services.

Clinicians from Hunter New England Local Health District (HNELHD) provided the health checks in Tenterfeld, as part of the NSW Government’s Brighter Beginnings program.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Education Prue Car said the program is a joint initiative of the NSW Department of Education and NSW Health, which is making free health checks accessible to all four-year-olds attending participating ECEC services, including public preschools, community preschools and long day care centres.

“Starting school is an


It was delivered so hard by the King’s Cross junkie wanting money, that it dented her skull. e popular, young up-and-coming cop was le for dead, but she managed to drag herself to a bus stop and signal for help.

Sam was keeping herself alive for her children.

When police arrived on the scene, they didn’t recognise their colleague.

Her husband, Inspector Laurence Barlow, could only watch on helplessly as his wife’s life teetered on the edge. is is a book of triumph over adversity and if you are looking for an inspirational read, this is the one to get your hands on.

Sam doesn’t allow the results of her attack stop her from undergoing rehab and her resilience and strong spirit see her return to work a couple of years later.

You can order your copy through amazon.

exciting time, but with two in fve children developmentally at risk or vulnerable before they start school, we need to do more to support young children and their families,” Ms Car said.

“Providing health and development checks in early childhood centres makes it more convenient for parents to get these checks done before their children start ‘big school’.”

Minister for Regional Health, Ryan Park said the program is currently being rolled out across all local health districts in NSW and is expected to be available statewide by the end of 2024.

“Our local health districts are working with ECEC services across NSW to implement the program, taking into consideration local community and cultural needs.

“By offering outreach services, we’re ensuring children from every corner of NSW have the

opportunity to thrive, and that parents have access to assistance if their child requires it,” Mr Park said.

Member for Lismore, Janelle Saffn says the program’s diversity of care will greatly improve the accessibility and delivery of paediatric treatment across the region.

“These free checks for 4-year-old children cover a wide range of developmental areas, including language, social, and motor skills, as well as cognitive abilities. They also include assessments of physical growth, dental health, and hearing.” Ms Saffn said.

Dr Paul Craven, Executive Director of Children, Young People, and Families HNELHD, said the District’s multidisciplinary team travel to different regional towns throughout the year.

“Our team of speech pathologists,

occupational therapists, and child and family health nurses visit these communities to assess a child’s development and feed that information back to parents to ensure they can help fnd the support they need, if they need it,” said Dr Craven.

Early childhood education and care providers can apply for a one-off grant to help support services be able to opt into this program in 2024. Applications are open now and close on 31 March 2024. To fnd out more information and apply, visit the Department of Education’s website.

The NSW Government has committed $111.2 million over four years to the program.

For more information about the health and development checks in early childhood education services, visit:

Council adopts referendum question on popularly elected mayor

Kyogle Council electors will be asked in a referendum whether or not they want a popularly elected mayor.

The referendum will be held in conjunction with State-wide Local Government elections on Saturday, 14 September.

A popularly elected mayor is elected by voters and serves a fouryear term. Currently, Kyogle Councillors elect the mayor from amongst themselves and the mayor serves a two-year term.

Council resolved in April 2022 to conduct a

referendum on having a popularly elected mayor, with Councillors indicating at the time they wanted to maintain a system of wards and the current number of Councillors (nine).

With the local government election to be held this year, the Council at its 11 March 2024 meeting decided the question voters will be asked at the referendum. It will be:

Do you favour the election of the Mayor by electors for a four-year term with the number of wards reduced from

three to two, each ward comprising of four councillors, plus a popularly elected Mayor?

Currently, Council has three wards, with three Councillors in each ward and the mayor elected by Councillors from among themselves -- making a total of nine councillors.

However, if the council is to have a popularly elected mayor and still have a total of nine councillors, voters will have to elect a mayor and eight councillors (making a total of nine).

As there must be an

even representation of Councillors in each ward, Council is proposing to reduce the number of wards to two and have four councillors elected from each ward.

As well as deciding on the referendum question, the Council at the March meeting endorsed an information pamphlet to be made available to voters which outlines the pros and cons of a popularly elected Mayor.

The information pamphlet is available on Council’s website or from Council’s administration centre.

NEWS 14 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
Brittany Long (HNELHD) Mary Frost (HNELHD), Leonie Crowe (Northcott Early Childhood Services) Sam Shipman (NDIS), Katie Sorensen (HNELHD), Bridget Storey (HNELHD), Natalie Briggs (Northcott Early Childhood Services)

What does the current federal government solar discount mean for you?

The federal government provides a solar discount to home owners and businesses in Australia that install a small scale renewable energy system (solar, wind or hydro) under the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES) to help with the purchase cost. Installing an eligible system allows the creation of Small-scale Technology Certifi cates (STCs). The number of STCs created is based on:

•The amount of renewable electricity the system produces or the amount of electricity consumption it reduces.

•The climate region where it’s installed.

Under the package, the federal government will pay around $350 per kilowatt towards cost of a solar system.

This amount reduces at the end of the calendar year (every year up until 2030 when the program is finished) so the right time to invest in solar is now

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Let’s break it down

Maxine and Daniel are considering a 5.28KW solar system, supplied and installed by ProSolar for $6,937. The federal government discount for this system is $1,938 (at time of publishing). This brings their system cost down to $4999 saving them $1,850 per year enabling them to pay back their investment in 2.98 years!

Alternatively, the same system can be financed for $27 per week. This can be an attractive way to reduce your bill and put the money you would normally pay your power company into your very own power system on your rooftop.

ProSolar provides advice and guidance in a simple and easy way, to ensure you select the optimal solution for your home and budget. This is the best opportunity Northern Rivers families and business owners have ever had to generate our own power For more information, call ProSolar on 02 7912 0760 or 0482 082 304.

ProSolar has designed three great packages to help you take advantage of the federal government discount.

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Kevin Hogan MP

Rail Trail

It was fantastic to see the rail trail from Casino to Bentley open. I secured a $7.5 million grant through the National Tourism Icons Program for this to happen.

This section is 13.4 km in length from Old Casino Station to Back Creek Bridge at Bentley, with an adjoining bridle path. The project includes four car parks, picnic tables and seating, bike racks, amenities, landscaping and signage.

It is forecast to increase visitors by 40,000 a year to the Casino area which will be fantastic for local businesses and bring a new form of tourism to our region. This is going to be wonderful for locals and tourists.

This section is part of the 132km running the full length of the Casino to Murwillumbah rail corridor. The section between Bentley and Lismore is already under construction.

Marist Brothers Rams


Lismore Marist Brothers Rams RLFC recently held their season launch at the Gordon Pavilion, Oakes Oval. A minute’s silence was held in honour of the late Paul O’Neill and Mick O’Connor who were both passionate members of the club.

The Casino RSM Cavaliers Cricket Club and Marist Brothers

Cricket Club were out enjoying a game themselves.

Lismore Secures Historic Funding Agreement for $860 Million Roads and Bridges Rebuild

Pearces Creek Bridge Pearces Creek Bridge was offcially opened last week. This $5.24 million project has been co-funded by the Federal Government Bridges Renewal Program and

The $12 million upgrade of Crozier and Oakes Oval is well underway. This upgrade is really important to get visitors and events back into our town. We will attract signifcant sporting events across 5 different codes. Will be great for locals as well.

These events mean more money spent in local motels, restaurants, cafes, and retail shops which will be a great support for our local businesses.

This is being funded by Federal, State and Local Governments, with contributions from sporting codes. Great to see all levels of Government working together.

Following tireless negotiations and persistent lobbying by Lismore City Council, a historic agreement to fund the rebuild of around one hundred of Lismore’s roads and bridges, devastated by the 2022 natural disaster, was fnalised last week with the NSW Government.

The agreement not only signifes the governments confdence in the future of the city but also aims to streamline critical funding for transport infrastructure in the aftermath of natural disasters.

the NSW Government Fixing Country Bridges Program.

It is now standing as a concrete structure with dual lanes, new guard rails, widened shoulders and re-vegetation works to prevent erosion.

Load limits have also been removed with the bridge now safer for all road users on this key connection in the local road network.

Rural bridges are vital for us keeping people safe, moving produce out, and connecting our communities.

The record investment of $860 million provides certainty for the city and the community that the many projects, previously stuck in a holding pattern, can now progress to full investigation and design.

Brendan Logan, Council’s Chief Operating Offcer, emphasised the magnitude of Council’s work in securing this agreement as well as its implications for the city’s rebuild efforts.

“This is one of the largest asset restoration

funding agreements in Australia’s history, and we are grateful it is now in place for our Roads and Bridges component of the Flood Restoration Portfolio,” he said.

“While initial costings for many projects have been determined, further assessment is necessary to understand the full scope of works.

“This funding means Council can now progress with this investigation and the design phase with certainty and at a steady pace.

“All going well, some of our most damaged sites, like Blue Knob Road, and Stoney Chute Road, are moving much closer to real restorative work commencing,” said Logan.

The tripartite agreement, involving Transport for NSW, the NSW Reconstruction Authority and Lismore City Council, establishes a new, expedited funding pathway for reconstruction efforts.

Previously, Council operated under a reimbursement model, completing work with its own funds and awaiting reimbursement from the government.

This new agreement ensures upfront funding availability, removing risks and barriers for Council.

“What executing this agreement does is lock in a cost estimate, which then provides working capital, which allows us to plan with confdence,” Logan said.

“We can lock in designs and start serious program development, and then begin the process of informing the community, our Council, and the market of what we will be delivering and when.”

The NSW State government has previously expressed its dedication to assisting food-affected communities throughout the Northern Rivers region. This agreement solidifes and furthers that commitment. It is a signifcant leap forward for Lismore, inspiring renewed confdence in the city with solid government backing.

Not only does this historic agreement beneft Lismore’s rebuild but also sets a precedent for disaster response funding for all NSW Councils in the future.

NEWS 16 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
Photo (L-R): CEO of the NSW Reconstruction Authority Simon Draper, Minister Paul Scully, Minister Jenny Aitchison, Lismore Mayor Steve Krieg, Member for Lismore Janelle Saffn, Lismore City Council General Manager Jon Gibbons, Minister Jihad Dib and Lismore City Council Chief Operating Offcer Brendan Logan.


Tenterfeld Public Library is calling all young storytellers to tell their stories as part of 2024 National Youth Week celebrations.

Young people aged between 12+ years are being invited to join one of two storytelling workshops in the library to learn the art of ‘Micro-Stories’ and digital ‘Stop-Motion’ to amplify and share what is important to them.

The stories created during the workshops will then be digitised and become part of a Story Quest adventure trail following Tenterfeld Creek walk.


Tuesday 16 April is a 2-day ‘Micro-Story’ workshop presented by professional illustrated author Trish Donald.

In this workshop, Trish will guide participants through the development of a micro-story capturing a

moment in time through the eyes of people, animals, and inanimate objects. Visual elements from the stories will inspire artworks to be painted on rocks with participants placing their rocks along the Tenterfeld Creek Trail walk as part of the fnal Story Quest adventure.

On Wednesday 18 April, join professional animator Daniel Elliott from creative studio ‘Visitors from Dreams’ to create a short ‘Stopmotion’ animation. Participants will learn story mapping, simple 2-D stop-motion techniques and adding audio to their fnal digital animation. The fnal digital animations will then be published to a digital portal and become part of the fnal Story Quest adventure trail along Tenterfeld Creek.

Places are limited and bookings essential for

the two workshops. For further information or to confrm your booking contact the library on 02 6736 6060 or by email to library@tenterfeld.

The Story Quest program is a free 5-day youth program aimed at amplifying youth voices through the art of storytelling, culminating in a fnal Story Quest adventure and BBQ to be held at the Tenterfeld Skate Ramp and Youth precinct on Saturday 20 April 2024. Further information and the full program of activities about the Story Quest adventure trail and BBQ on Saturday 20 April will be advertised closer to the date.

This program is proudly supported by the NSW Government in partnership with Tenterfeld Shire Council.

Janelle Saffn MP

Landmark environmental reforms pass NSW Parliament I have a lot of environmental news to share with you this month, as there have been some signifcant developments.

Ban on offshore mining

The Minns Government’s has moved to protect our beaches and coastal environment by banning seabed petroleum and mineral mining and exploration off the NSW coast.

The Government secured support from across the NSW Parliament for the ban, making NSW the frst state in Australia to prohibit offshore exploration and mining.

Offshore mining activities can have a devastating effect on our marine wildlife by releasing toxins, destroying habitat and creating harmful sediment levels.

I am pleased to be part of a government that is prepared to lead the way on protecting our marine life and coastal environment. No other state or territory has acted so comprehensively to prevent the environmental impact that can result from offshore mining.

Giving the EPA some teeth

The Minns Government has brought in the biggest changes to environment protection rules since the Environment Protection Authority ( EPA) was established in 1991.

The Parliament has passed legislation giving the EPA stronger powers to deter environmental crimes and respond faster to pollution incidents, giving us the strongest environmental regulations of any state or territory in Australia. This fulfls Labor’s election commitment to provide the EPA with teeth.

The Environment Protection Legislation Amendment (Stronger Regulation and Penalties) Bill 2024 includes:

• Doubling

maximum penalties – the most serious offences will carry penalties of $10 million for companies and $2 million for individuals.

• Raising on-thespot-fnes – Fines for common environmental offences will more that double to $30,000 for companies and $15,000 for individuals for a frst offence, going up to $45,000 and $22,500 respectively for a second offence.

• Councils will have authority to issue illegal dumping fnes of $5000 to companies and $1000 to individuals, with higher penalties for dumping in sensitive places like a school, hospital, or national park

• Public Transparency – a ‘name and shame’ process will issue warnings about poor environmental performers and substandard practices. Penalties for serious environmental offences had not been raised since 2005 when Labor was last in government

Have your say on Koalas.

You are invited to have your say on the best ways to help our endangered koalas.

The Government’s

Reviewing the NSW Koala Strategy discussion paper is online until 26 April for people to give feedback on habitat protection and ways to improve the safety and health of koalas.

www.environment. animals-and-plants/ threatened-species/ programs-legislationand-framework/

nsw-koala-strategy/ reviewing-the-nswkoala-strategy

Grants to reduce food waste and feed those in need

Two new grant programs have been announced to help reduce the tonnes of food that go to waste every year in NSW.

An estimated 70 per cent of food wasted in NSW is still edible, and meanwhile more than 30 percent of the state’s households are experiencing some level of food insecurity.

Through the new Business Food Waste Partnership Grants, businesses, peak industry bodies and councils can apply for grants of up to $200,00 to reduce food waste and boost recycling.

And food relief organisations can apply for funding of up to $500,000 to better manage increasing amounts of rescued food and delivery to those in need. food-rescue

Vehicle emissions ratings

The Government has launched a new Vehicle Emissions Star Rating website to help drivers consider sustainability when buying their next new or used vehicle.

The Vehicle Emissions Star Rating website also has information on electric vehicles, the location of charging stations, battery recycling and the differences between electric, hybrid and internal combustion engine vehicles.


NEWS 17 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent
Susie George NSW Reconstruction Authority Executive Director, Janelle Saffn MP and Lismore Mayor Steve Krieg at the announcement of the second Resilient Lands Program site. Illustrated Storytelling Creating Digital Stop-motion

Green Bin Guidelines Overhauled for Healthier Soil and Clearer Recycling: Tweed Implements New Regulations

Revisions to the permissible contents of green bins throughout the Tweed region are presently underway, heralding improvements in soil health and a reduction in confusion surrounding waste disposal. In accordance with a directive from the NSW Environment Protection Agency (NSW EPA), fbrous materials, notably paper, cardboard, and teabags, will no longer be accepted in residents’ green bins, designated for Food Organics and Garden Organics (FOGO).

Henceforth, these greenlid bins will exclusively accommodate food scraps and garden waste.

Yvette van Amstel, the Waste Education Offcer for the council, emphasized that while adjusting to these alterations might

entail a period of acclimatization, they are poised to enhance the quality of compost derived from green waste sourced from myriad households across the Tweed. “Regrettably, many fbrous products purportedly labelled as compostable do not live up to their claims, often harbouring harmful substances that imperil our environment and well-being,” remarked Ms. van Amstel.

“By excluding such potentially deleterious items from our green bins, we can produce premium commercial compost that bolsters soil fertility, nurturing the growth of wholesome produce like fruits and vegetables.”

Linda Tohver, representing North East Waste, asserted that these revisions are a return to

fundamentals for green bin usage. “With these updated guidelines, any uncertainty regarding the disposal of items like greasy pizza boxes or paper towels in the green bin will be dispelled,” noted Ms. Tohver.

To facilitate the community’s

transition to these new regulations, both the council and North East Waste will conduct educational campaigns, disseminating information through web platforms and social media channels. Those seeking further clarifcation on the

changes can avail themselves of resources at either of the Council administration facilities.

Under the revamped guidelines, permissible items for disposal in the green organic bin encompass fruit and vegetable scraps, meat and bones, seafood and shells, pasta, bread, rice, cereal, eggs, dairy products, loose tea leaves, coffee grinds, and assorted garden waste such as leaves, clippings, and weeds.

Conversely, items proscribed from the green organic bin include fbrous products like bamboo, cardboard, and paper, along with paper towels, serviettes, tissues, napkins, and certain compostable or biodegradable products. Notably, exceptions to these exclusions include kitchen caddy liners

crafted from newspaper or compostable liners compliant with Australian Standard AS 4736-2006.

For comprehensive details on these revisions, alongside frequently asked questions, individuals are encouraged to visit For insights into the transformation of food and garden waste into enriching compost, a visit to North East Waste’s website is recommended.

For more information on these changes, including frequently asked questions, visit

To fnd out more about how your food and garden waste is turned into nutritious compost, visit North East Waste.

NEWS 18 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
The quality of compost being processed at Stotts Creek Resource and Recovery Centre (pictured) will be improved by the new changes. Changes to what can be put in your green bin: Only food scraps and garden waste will be allowed in your green-lid bin from now on. Fibre-based products will no longer be accepted.

Resilient Lismore receives full ‘Repair to Return’ funding

Resilient Lismore has welcomed the fnalisation of its funding deed with the NSW Reconstruction Authority, which will enable the continuation of its ‘Repair to Return’ program.

Resilient Lismore Executive Director Elly Bird said that in 2024 the organisation is scaling up its ‘Repair to Return’ project to best utilise the $5 million funding.

“Repair to Return was formerly known as the ‘Two Rooms Project’, which used volunteer labour to construct walls in two rooms of badly food-damaged homes,” Ms Bird said.

“Repair to Return has evolved as we have secured funding, and now we engage qualifed tradespeople to do the

milestone for us and we extend our gratitude to Premier Minns and his government; to the Emergency Services Minister Jihad Dibb and of course to Janelle Saffn the Member for Lismore who secured

and in downstream communities, including Coraki, Woodburn, Wardell, Bungawalbin and others - we have a regional footprint.” Ms Bird said. “We are not doing renovations or total

work. Our scope has expanded to provide partial repair of homes, including kitchens, bathrooms and other critical repairs.”

“After nearly two years of our home repair work being privately funded by local organisations and philanthropists we are very grateful that the NSW Reconstruction Authority is providing this additional funding so that we can continue to help people return to safe and secure homes.”

“It’s a signifcant

this funding commitment for our work.”

“The Repair to Return program provides qualifed trades assistance to owneroccupiers who were living in the affected property at the time of the disaster and who still need to live there.

“We prioritise people who can’t progress their recovery on their own, we prioritise vulnerable people, and we are trying to help as many people as we can. We work in Lismore

rebuilds, but we will help people repair their homes so they have somewhere safe and secure to live. There is a high level of need so there might be a waitlist depending on the situation and the work that is required. We can’t guarantee that we can help everyone but we are doing our best to help as many people as we can.”

“We can provide labour and materials, or we can help people use the materials they already have. We can help to restore essential

plumbing; repair and restore kitchens; assist with electrical work; resheet walls; assist with furniture and whitegoods - and more. People just need to talk to us to see

Northern Rivers are on the way back but there is still plenty that needs to be done homes that need to be repaired, people who need assistance, and businesses that need

commitment to our community. We are particularly grateful to the local people who have provided signifcant funding to get us to where we are now, and who have helped us to help so many people live in safer housing.”

Amanda Leck, Head of Adaptation, Mitigation and Reconstruction at the NSW Reconstruction Authority, said supporting the Repair to Return program was a practical example of the organisation backing a community-led initiative that clearly works.

“The work in Lismore is not just about buying back homes and rolling out our Resilient Lands Program, it’s about

what we can do.

Ms Bird said there was still a mountain of work to do for the Northern Rivers to build back and develop resilience for future events.

“This is a multi-year, long-tailed recovery process,” she said. “We understand that people from outside the region might think, ‘Oh, that was two years ago, it’s all over now’, but that is far from the truth.

“Lismore and the


“Resilient Lismore is here for the long haul because this is our community: our staff and volunteers are from this community. We love it, we are here to help the people we live alongside, and we are committed to helping our region not just to survive but to thrive. “We are grateful to the Reconstruction Authority and to our partners and supporters for their ongoing

restoring a community and maintaining its unique identity for the long term,” she said.

“We know we can’t stop disasters from occurring, but we can do more to prepare and prevent the worst of their impacts.

“It’s critical we’re better prepared for future disasters with Councils and local community leaders and will develop local Disaster Adaptation Plans that consider all possible options.

NEWS 19 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent
The Resilient Lismore Repair to Return team Repair to Return Team Repair to Return Project Manager Grant Huggins and Project Offcer Felipe Olaondo Nogueira

A surge in the amount of digital data in the health sector, together with increases in compute power and the availability of new artifcial intelligence (AI) tools are leading to an explosion of AI being used in healthcare, according to a new report from CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency.

The AI Trends for Healthcare report identifes the opportunities and challenges facing the continued and inevitable integration of AI in Australia’s healthcare sector; from clinical decision support to administrative tasks.

Research Director of CSIRO’s Australian e-Health Research Centre (AEHRC), Dr David Hansen said that the use of AI in healthcare is unique because the accuracy of models could mean the difference between life or death, or ongoing health or illness.

“A key difference between the use of AI in healthcare compared to other industries is the use of AI in decision making for prevention, diagnosis, monitoring and treatment,” Dr Hansen said.

“As we strive to create newer and better digital tools to

harness the benefts of AI in healthcare, frameworks and ethical implementation along with established safety, quality and monitoring guidelines continue to be imperative.”

The report also notes that the digitalisation of Australia’s hospital records system – or electronic medical records (EMRs) – is rapidly expanding.

EMRs and other clinical systems are likely to provide the platform for implementing AI technologies – with uses in areas such as imaging, diagnosis, and treatment, as well as tasks such as

reconciliation of reports or analysis of clinical data.

“There is more health and medical data out there than ever before, so data privacy and security are a growing challenge,” Dr Hansen said.

“AI can play an important role in allowing Australians to have full access to and control over their health data.”

The report identifes that medical research will be a signifcant winner from the digitisation of healthcare and the introduction of AI algorithms, as medical research

institutions invest in infrastructure to harness the power of the data being generated.

“We’re at the cusp of an extraordinary era in medicine. For the frst time, machines can provide effcient administrative support for clinicians and education for patients, diagnose and predict disease and inform clinical decision making,” Dr Hansen said.

“If done with care, thought and safety, embedding AI in healthcare is an opportunity to drastically improve the work lives of medical

professions and the health and wellbeing of consumers.”

The report highlights other sectors – such as aged care or disability – as also being able to beneft substantially from the improved support and vigilance offered by AI.

“Our research shows the benefts of AI’s capacity for the analysis of large data sets for disease control and for clinical support in high demand such as medical imaging. All of this shows great promise for increasing digital health impact,” Dr Hansen said.

SENIORS & HEALTH NEWS 20 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024 Practicing Bowen Therapy for the past 27 years For all your aches, pains, strains and migraines THINK BOWEN THERAPY (THE AUSSIE THERAPY) LISMORE 23 McIntosh Rd, Goonellabah 6624 4424 (Every Tuesday) CASINO Shop 8, Kwong Sings Arcade 6662 2829 (Every Thursday) BOWEN THERAPY GENTLE, SAFE & VERY EFFECTIVE PAIN RELIEF Blue C Building, Suite 1, 3 McLean Street Coolangatta (07) 5536 8368 sunshinehearing com au *conditions app y p ease ca us o detai s Free Undercover Parking Mention this ad and receive $250 OFF a set of rechargable hearing aids* Your local independent & experienced hearing care provider. Discover a better quality of life with Sunshine Hearing. Registered provider of hearing aids under the government s Hearing Ser vices Program for el g b e Pensioners and Veterans , Suite 1, angatta (07) 5536 8368 pp y p us for det ails Free Undercover Parking Mention this ad and receive $250 OFF a set of rechargable hearing aids* Your local independent & experienced hearing care provider. Discover a better quality of life with Sunshine Hearing. Registered provider of hearing aids under the government s Hearing Ser vices Program for eligible Pensioners and Veterans* Blue C Building, Suite 1, McLean Street, Coolangatta (07) 5536 8368 *conditions app y – please c all us for detai s Mention this ad and receive $250 OFF a set of rechargable hearing aids* Your local independent & experienced hearing care provider. Discover a better quality of life with Sunshine Hearing. Registered provider of hearing aids under the government’s Hearing Ser vices Program for eligible Pensioners and Veterans* CSIRO report highlights ‘extraordinary era’ of AI in healthcare
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RURAL NEWS 4th of April, 2024 YOUR 5th April - Clearing Sale 9th April - Prime Cattle S 18th April - Store Cattle S 23rd April - Prime Cattle S 7th April - Prime Cattle S 9 Coldstream Street Ulmarra NSW 2462 | Office 02 6642 5200 | David Farrell 0437 448 455 | Lachlan Gay 0477 123 770 UPCOMING S DATES PROPERTY OF THE WEEK - 93 GORGE ROAD, LILYDALE $2,750,000 * 530 Acres(approx ) * 45km north-west of Grafton * 200 Cow and calf carrying capacity or equivalent * Pastures consist of a mix of Kikuyu, Paspalum, Bahia, Blue Couch in addition to mixed natives. * 170 Acres of river flats, 60 acres of cleared paddocks, with the balance of land comprising lightly timbered ridges * 1.5KM(approx.) of Clarence River frontage * Accommodation consists of expansive 7 bedroom homestead situated in a prime, flood free position overlooking river flats * 5 Main paddocks, 3 holding paddocks * Stock-water is by way of troughs, dams and the Clarence River * Infrastructure includes 3 bay machinery shed, larger timber farm shed, extensive set of timber stockyards * Mains power, water by way of 4x5000 gallon water tanks * 6KW(approx.) solar system provides back-to-grid power offset Phone Martin Pearce for more information on 0417 690 637 Ensuring Fairness: Why Bunnings’ Role in the Supermarket Debate Matters Full story on page 24



The weather and the short processing weeks lead to a reduction of numbers for both the Cattle sale and the Sheep & Lamb sales. Agents saw totals of 687 Cattle and 535 head of Sheep & Lambs for the weekly sales. The Markets were frmer for the fnished heavier articles and were par to a shade easier for the lighter and unfnished types.

Vealer steers av 328.5c/kg topping at 364.2c/kg or $736.12 to $910.50

Vealer heifers av 260.4c/kg topping at 330c/kg or $615.20 to $992.36

Feeder steers av 304.8c/kg topping at 370.2c/kg or $1142.82 to $1807.05

Feeder heifers av 249.6c/kg topping at 329.2c/kg or $851.84 to $1305.50

Yearling steers av 298.9c/kg topping at 380.2c/kg or $1034.92 to $1658.25

Yearling heifers av 262.9c/kg topping at 384.2c/kg or $838.55 to $1748.11

Steers av 289.5c/kg topping at 339.2c/kg or $1640.09 to $2083.24

Heifers av 267.2c/kg topping at 358.2c/kg or $1210.33 to $1612.61

Manufacturing steers av 213.2c/kg topping at 213.2c or $1309.06

Cows av 204c/kg topping at 235.02c/kg or $1097.89 to


Bulls av 243.6c/kg topping at 273.2c/kg or $1651.75 to $2487.50

Sale total of 665 head saw an av of $1066.56 av across the board.

Sheep and Lamb numbers saw a fall with a third of the last weeks numbers.

Lambs topped at $187 to av $100.56 ($2/down) Ewes topped at $87 to av $56.47 ($24 down ) Wethers topped at $75 to av $67.71 ($11 up ) Rams topped at $64 to av $32.06 ($38 down) Lamb rams topped at $100 to av $76.62 ($1 up ) The sale av of $72.39 was $20/ head down. Pork numbers were up slightly with a bigger number of stores.

Sows sold from $175 to $230, Boars sold to $140, Baconers sold to $240, Pork sold from $188 to $238, Light Pork sold to $168, Stores from $40 to $182. Roosters sold to $10, Hens to $8 , Silkys sold to $35, Pullets sold to $27050, Guinea Fowl sold to $20, Ducks sold to $5, Drakes to $7.50, Groups of Guinea Fowl sold to $27.50, Groups of chicks sold to $27.50, Groups of Quail sold to $15


The weather and the Easter break saw the numbers plummet to 535 head from last weeks 2677 head. The yarding was quite a mixture with nearly half the yarding falling into the mutton categories. The lamb side of things was also spread far and wide, with some lambs as light as 15kg up to 58kg. The market for the better fnished trade and export types were frm with the local buyers looking

to fll orders. The light weight sales were up and down with the variation due to fnish and type. The mutton market was up and down with the heavier end with fnish frmer , and the lighter ewes and wethers cheaper. Lambs topped at $187 to av $100.56($2 down), Hoggets topped at $87 to av $56.47 ($24 down ), Ewes topped at $54 to av $25.11 ($20 down), Wethers topped at $75 to av $67.71 ($11 up), Rams topped at $64 to av $32.06 ($38 down), Lamb rams topped at $100 to av $76.62 ($1 up ). The sale yarding averaged $72.39 a drop of $20/head week on week.

Rory & Kathy Frost sold Dorper lambs 45.3kg to Leslie Lamb for $158, 44.5kg to Leslie Lamb for $150, 70kg hoggets to Eversons for $80, ewes to Eversons for $40 John & Regina Henry sold Dorper lambs 47kg to Tonys

Supa Meats & Leslie Lamb for $161

Cooinda P/S sold Dorper x lams 44kg to Take IT Easy Meats for $120, hoggets 45.6kg to Eversons for $70, ewes to Eversons for $54

Learoyd Family sold Dorper x lambs 26.6kg and 25.6kg to restockers for $37. and $33, 18kg to restockers for $28

Leon & Sharon Willis sold Dorper lambs 41.3kg to Leslie Lamb for $108, 41.3kg ram lambs to Take IT Easy Meats for $90

Steve & Helen Howard sold Dorper ram lambs 63.3kg to Take IT Easy Meats for $100, 43kg to Take IT Easy Meats for $93

Mc Nulty Bros sold Dorper lambs 42kg to Leslie Lamb for $120, 43.5kg hoggets to Eversons for $87, 41kg 4tooth wethers to Eversons for $75, 60kg wethers to Eversons for $61, 70kg wethers to Eversons for $66, 57kg hogget Rams to Take IT Easy Meats for $86, Rams to restockers for $64, Rams to Whites Trading for $30

RURAL NEWS 22 e Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024 CONTACT US - The Northern Rivers Times Rural Edition ✆ 1300 679 787 SALES 02 6662 6222 Albury - 02 6080 9520, Casino - 02 6662 6222, Dubbo - 02 5858 4078, Grafton - 02 5632 3041, Moree - 02 6794 3889, Tamworth - 02 5719 1656, Wagga Wagga - 02 5940 8516 Directors, co-owners and co-founders: Jeffrey Gibbs and Sharon Bateman ISSN: 2652-7928 a Genesis Media company ABN: 84 134 238 181 All rights reserved © 2024 Distribution Coffs Harbour north to Southport and west to Tenterfield weekly.

Complete sugarcane genome sequence opens up new era in breeding

The frst comprehensive reference genome for ‘R570’, a widely cultivated modern sugarcane hybrid, has been completed in a landmark advancement for agricultural biotechnology.

Sugarcane contributes $2.2 billion to the Australian economy and accounts for 80 per cent of global sugar supply. The mapping of its genetic blueprint opens opportunities for new tools to enhance breeding programs around the world for this valuable bioenergy and food crop.

It is one of the last major crops to be fully sequenced, due to the fact its genome is almost three times the size of humans’ and far more complex, with more than 100 chromosomes.

The milestone marks a new era in breeding for the crop and was driven by an international research consortium, which included Australia’s national science agency CSIRO, The University of Queensland (UQ), and the Sugar Research


Principal Investigator and CSIRO Research Scientist Dr Karen Aitken said the breakthrough addresses the critical challenge of stagnating sugar yields by tapping into the previously inaccessible genetic information in the sugarcane genome.

“This is a major step forward for sugarcane research and will improve our understanding of complex traits like yield and adaption to diverse environmental conditions as well as disease resistance,” Dr Aitken said.

“This is the frst high quality sugarcane variety genome to be completed. It represents a signifcant scientifc achievement from 10 years of collaborative effort from scientists across the world.”

Co-author and UQ Professor of Innovation in Agriculture Robert Henry from the ARC Research Hub for Engineering Plants to Replace Fossil Carbon aims to develop renewable carbon products from plant biomass for use as cost-

effective and sustainable aviation fuel.

“I’m certainly hoping to make great use of this genome to produce sugarcane that’s a better raw material to replace fossil carbon,” Professor Henry said.

“We need to do some major improvement in sugarcane for that use, because traditionally sugarcane has been bred just for sugar and now with the move to net zero, there is great interest in sugarcane as one of the most productive crops in the world to be that source of renewable

Coalition, Greens and independents unite to back farmers

Australian farmers welcome the support of Coalition, Greens and independent MPs, who voted together in opposition to the Biosecurity Protection Levy in the lower house today.

National Farmers’ Federation President David Jochinke (Pictured) said while farmers were disappointed to see the controversial levy progress to the Senate, it was encouraging to see MPs validating the industry’s strong concerns.

“This was a very lonely vote for the Government, and we thank every member who voted against this bad idea. It’s an important demonstration to farmers that their concerns are being heard.”

Joining opposition to the levy by the Liberals and Nationals, Greens MP Elizabeth Watson-Brown stated her party had “serious concerns about the lack of transparency and oversight” applied to the allocation of collected industry funds. Ms Watson-Brown also noted: “The Greens

will be pushing the government to commit to progressing a levy on risk creators in the form of a container levy.”

Several members of the crossbench also reiterated the industry’s concerns. Indi MP Dr Helen Haines shared concern that the levy will be going into

consolidated revenue, noting that “there is no guarantee that this new charge on farmers will actually go to biosecurity measures”.

“In criticising this bill, farmers are not asking the government to do all the work, because they already contribute to biosecurity measures via existing levies, on-farm activities and much, much more” she said.

Allegra Spender MP called out “the failure of the government to follow its own processes and best practices in policy development.”

Mr Jochinke thanked the MPs for standing up for farmers and called on Senators to oppose the levy.

“It’s as simple as not standing for poor policy, and we can only hope that Senators see that too.”


Sugar Research

Australia cytogeneticist

Dr Nathalie Piperidis, also involved in the research effort, said the completion and release of the sequence is a major achievement which would provide a signifcant boost to the global sugarcane community, particularly for those scientists engaged in molecular breeding.

“Sugar Research Australia takes an immense pride in its involvement in this remarkable

accomplishment. I am personally honoured that cytogenetics research played such an important role in unravelling the sequence,” Dr Piperidis said.

“Not only does it hold the promise of enhancing our understanding of this amazing and beloved crop but it will also offer unprecedented ways to advance breeding techniques within the Australian sugarcane industry to produce a range of renewable and commercially viable products that include but go way beyond sugar.”

This research was funded by the Joint Genome Institute (USA) through the US Department of Energy community sequencing program.

Open access to the sequence is facilitated via the Plant Comparative Genomics portal of the Department of Energy’s Joint Genome Institute, providing the broader plant science community a hub for accessing, visualising and analysing the sugarcane genome sequence.

RURAL NEWS 23 April 4, 2024 e Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent Mid Season Weaner Sale Kempsey Regional Saleyards 11th April 9:00 am Start 1250 Head Expected 1250 Head Expected Well bred lines of British, Euro and Bos Indicus weaners presented in forward condition For Bookings and Enquiries contactIan Argue: 0428 655 604

Ensuring Fairness: Why Bunnings’ Role in the Supermarket Debate Matters

Amidst the ongoing scrutiny directed towards supermarkets, marked by the initiation of six inquiries investigating their pricing strategies and interactions with suppliers and farmers, there exists a sector often overlooked: the farm industry. Greenlife Industry Australia (GIA), serving as the national representative body for commercial plant growers across the country, underscores this aspect, employing a substantial workforce exceeding 25,000 individuals.

It’s notable that many plants purchased for personal gardens or vegetable patches at Bunnings, Australia’s leading hardware retailer, likely originate from this very sector. Within the discourse surrounding the ongoing debates and inquiries, lies a crucial concern about the immense market infuence wielded by these companies, dictating prices, production levels, and

trading conditions.

Joanna Cave, the Chief Executive Offcer of GIA, advocates for subjecting Bunnings to the same scrutiny as supermarkets and integrating them into The Food & Grocery Code of Conduct. This proposition stems from several key points:

• Plants, already encompassed within the Code, constitute a signifcant portion of Bunnings’ inventory, making the retailer a pivotal player in this domain.

• Bunnings operates as an unregulated monopoly within the greenlife sector.

• Offering a diverse range of products,

including household essentials and pet supplies, Bunnings parallels the offerings of a conventional supermarket.

• A staggering twothirds of grower’s express dissatisfaction with their trading arrangements with Bunnings, with a

signifcant portion experiencing pressure to accept subpar prices or even sell at a loss.

• Concerningly, many growers fear reprisals or losing business if they dare to negotiate for fair prices.

• Instances of nursery closures attributed to unfair practices further underscore the gravity of the situation.

GIA specifcally advocates for the inclusion of major retailers like Bunnings within the Supermarket Code under review by Dr. Craig Emerson. While the fnal report is slated for submission to the Australian Government by June 30, an interim report is anticipated to precede this, inviting stakeholder feedback. This push refects a broader commitment to ensuring fair and equitable practices across the retail landscape, encompassing not just traditional supermarkets but also infuential players like Bunnings.

Farmers welcome revised New Vehicle Effciency Standard, but remain alert on impacts

Farmers welcome amendments announced today to delay timelines for the New Vehicle Effciency Standard legislation, but continue to warn impacts may still be felt by Australian farmers.

National Farmers’

Federation President David Jochinke was pleased the Federal Government had listened to producers’ concerns, easing the targets set for utes and some 4WDs.

“Farmers support emissions reduction

but not in a way that compromises the tools of the trade farmers use every day,” Mr Jochinke said.

“Today’s amendments are welcome, and shows the Government has recognised the concerns raised by stakeholders.”

However, Mr Jochinke said concerns remained over the potential impacts the policy could have on producers.

“While slower roll out times are welcome, we remain concerned there will be a lack of realistic lower

emissions vehicles available to producers, and subsequently higher prices for these vehicles.

“The NFF will be keeping both eyes on the road as this progresses to understand the impacts on feet and make sure it doesn’t

see price increases for farmers.

“Should this legislation come to pass, we expect the policy to be reviewed as it rolls out to ensure the new timeframes remain feasible and the market keeps in step.”

Statement on live cattle class action delay

Comments attributable to NFF President, David Jochinke

Recent news that the Government has requested a nine month delay in proceedings will be a bitter blow to victims of the illegal 2011 live cattle export ban.

I was in the Territory when this news broke, and I’ve seen how visibly angry and upset

this has made people. There is no reason for this delay besides petty politics. The Federal Government is making it clear once again that justice for the people who had their livelihoods destroyed isn’t a priority. They simply don’t care.

The Government is

meant to be a model litigant. However, they’re disgracing themselves by deceitful delaying tactics and shirking their responsibility to fairly compensate cattle producers.

It’s time to do the right thing and pay up. It’s a simple as that.

RURAL NEWS 24 e Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024 BIG RIVER SOLUTIONS Quickest Erection Even Faster Dismantle 0432 473 633
Joanna Cave, the Chief Executive Offcer of GIA



New winter trading hours for Byron Community Market

The Byron Community Market announces a modifcation in its trading hours for the upcoming winter season.

From April through September 2024, the market will reduce its opening times by one hour, operating from 8am to 2pm.

Recognising the seasonal shift and the community’s needs, this adjustment aims to enhance customer experience during the colder months. By aligning with these new opening times, visitors will have ample opportunity in the daylight hours to explore the vibrant offerings of the market within convenient timeframes.

“We are committed to providing a welcoming and enjoyable experience for our patrons

throughout the year,” said Natwah Petruszka, Community Market Coordinator. “We are

working within this seasonal change to ensure everyone gets the most out of the unique

atmosphere our Byron Community Market offers.”

The Byron Community

Market encourages locals and tourists to mark their calendars and take advantage of these revised trading hours, starting with the next market on Sunday 7th April.

The original Byron market since 1987, the Byron Community Market happens on the frst Sunday of each month. Whether seeking artisanal crafts, locallymade cuisine or a vibrant community atmosphere, the market promises an enriching experience for all.

For further information and updates, please visit the Byron Markets website at www.byronmarkets.

APRIL 4, 2024



Today’s target:

40 words average 48 words good

54+ words excellent

Find words of four letters or more. Every word must include the centre letter and each letter is used once only. Find at least one nine-letter word. No colloquial or foreign words, capitalised nouns, apostrophes, hyphens. No verbs or plural words ending in ‘s’. Solution list is not exhaustive. Ref: Macquarie Dictionary

ASTROLOGY with Joanne Madeline Moore

ARIES (Mar 21 – Apr 19)

This week Venus hooks up with Neptune, and Mercury starts reversing through your sign. So you’re extra susceptible to confusing misunderstandings, dubious suggestions and false flattery. Be discerning about who’s advice you take and make sure your plans are grounded in reality. Don’t let fair-weather friends lead you up the primrose path to trouble! If you’re a smart Ram, you will plan your week carefully and choose your close confidantes wisely.

TAURUS (Apr 20 – May 20)

Prosperity planet Jupiter is jumping through your sign until May 25. But are you making the most of this positive once-in-every-12-years placement?

It’s your time to shine Taurus – to show the world what you are truly capable of. So your motto for the moment is from birthday great, writer and activist Maya Angelou: “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive. And to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humour, and some style.”

GEMINI (May 21 – June 20)

The Sun, Mercury and Venus stimulate your peer group zone, so it’s important to support and encourage your friends. But with Mercury (your ruling planet) turning retrograde until April 25, make sure you communicate clearly and sort out any misunderstandings early. Fast thinking and creative strategies will help you solve problems and alleviate stress. Your motto is from birthday great, singer Billie Holiday: “If I don’t have friends, then I ain’t got nothing.”

CANCER (June 21 – July 22)

Many busy Crabs will burn the midnight oil, as creativity bites and inspiration strikes. International connections could be particularly beneficial and your involvement with a group, club or organisation has others looking to you for innovative ideas. But – with Mercury reversing through your career zone – resist the temptation to sidestep, confuse or snooze at work! Use your networking skills to drum up support, and don’t be afraid to ask experts for help.

LEO (July 23 – Aug 22)

With your ruler the Sun, Mercury and Venus all transiting through fellow fire sign Aries, you’re feeling feisty and ready for adventure. But with Mercury turning retrograde (until April 25) you could also feel like a Cat on a Hot Tin Roof! Remember that hubris often comes before a fall, so the buzz word for this week is humility. Clever Lions will be kinder towards other people, and more tolerant of their individual idiosyncrasies and particular circumstances.

VIRGO (Aug 23 – Sep 22)

Mercury (your patron planet) turns retrograde which can mean frustrations, delays and power plays, especially at work or while travelling. Perhaps a project is stalled, a person is plotting, or a domestic appliance (or your car) breaks down. Avoid stressing and vexing Virgo! Aim to be proactive rather than reactive. As writer (and birthday great) Maya Angelou reminds us: “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.”

LIBRA (Sep 23 – Oct 22)

With the Sun, Venus and Mercury (which turns retro on Monday night) visiting your relationship zone, it’s important to nurture and cherish your nearest and dearest. You could also lend a hand to a friend or relative who is sick, experiencing financial trouble or recovering from a broken heart. The best day of the week is Wednesday, when the Venus/Neptune link highlights romance, compassion and creativity. So surround yourself with love, beauty and good vibes!

SCORPIO (Oct 23 – Nov 21)

On Monday night Mercury starts reversing through your wellbeing and work zone, so it’s a suitable week to revise your daily diet and fitness routine, as you choose healthier food options and a form of exercise that you enjoy. Plus – when it comes to your job – it’s time to catch up on the backlog of unfinished projects and overflowing paperwork. With proactive Mars in your friendship zone, you’re keen to have a catch-up lunch or movie night with your besties.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov 22 – Dec 21)

This week the Sun, Mercury and Venus are all transiting through fellow fire sign Aries, which will boost your energy and enthusiasm – but also your blunt and tactless side. And Mercury turns retrograde on Monday night (until April 25). So close relationships will be complicated, and communication will be increasingly tricky –especially with your partner, potential partner, children and/or friends. Smart Sagittarians will slow down, shut up, listen and learn!

CAPRICORN (Dec 22 – Jan 19)

Mercury turns retrograde on Monday night (London time) which can mean delays, cancellations and plenty of frustrations – especially at home. Perhaps a DIY project is stalled, a family member is slowing progress, or an essential domestic appliance breaks down. Calm down Capricorn – aim to be proactive rather than reactive. Be particularly careful what you say to a stressed family member. If in doubt then be extra discreet, zip your lips and say nothing!

AQUARIUS (Jan 20 – Feb 18)

This week Mercury turns retrograde until April 25, so it’s time to do anything with an ‘re’ in front of it – revise, rehearse, review, remember, return, recover and/or reconnect. Especially in areas involving travel, education, communication and local community projects. Your mantra for the week is from birthday great, environmentalist Jane Goodall: “Every individual matters. Every individual has a role to play. Every individual makes a difference.”

PISCES (Feb 19 – Mar 20)

Creativity is especially high on Wednesday/ Thursday. And with Mars transiting through your sign, it’s time to assert your independence. But expect some frustrations and restrictions along the way, as Mercury turns retrograde until April 25. Clever Fish will be patient, persuasive and persistent – especially involving finances and business matters. Your motto is from this week’s birthday great, movie icon Bette Davis: “The key to life is accepting challenges.”

ACROSS DOWN Solution No. 3039 Crossword Release No. 3039 XPRESS. VER.4.03 publication can be separate text box. 1 11 13 20 29 36 44 50 57 59 2 21 51 3 34 30 4 18 31 40 45 56 60 19 27 41 52 5 14 28 35 53 15 22 42 47 6 12 23 37 48 58 16 38 7 24 32 49 54 17 46 8 25 43 61 39 9 26 55 10 33 C H A M B E R M A I D R E F R E S H A M A O I R A O Y Y B R E A K B U L L I E D S T E E P E N L B S E I S S E R A D I A T E D A D M I N I S T E R M V D F U L R S H E O A K L A P S E J A B S I N E X P O O R C A I A G U T T E R E G G N O G M I N E D H T R O T I T O N E D T O N I C W R E N C H U N R I P E L I H O L E H E A D P N Y U C K S L I C E E R A S E S A C G W C A O T U R N A R O U N D G R A C E F U L U A R W O V A Q A O B I G H T N U R S E R Y U N C A P B U O E E N O E T E Y E A R N E D D E T O N A T I O N S PO Box 8271 Bundall Qld Australia 4217 Telephone: (07) 5553 3200 Toll Free: 1 800 652 284 Fax: (07) 5553 3201 Auspac Media Email: Visit our site: The Feature People ACROSS 1 Attire 4 Poisonous herb 8 Type of small star 11 Frogman (4-5) 12 Frauds 13 Usual 14 Was in debt to 17 Unmarried 18 Compos mentis 20 Managing 22 Strikebreaker 25 Su ers defeat 27 Respiratory disorder 29 Coloured eye part 30 Besides 32 Irony 35 Fish eggs 36 Impose 37 Chanted 39 Ice-skating area 40 Swiss house 44 Crook 45 Nimbus 46 Fraternise 47 Edible bivalve 50 Nuclear 52 After that 54 Check-up 57 Northern part of NT (3,3,3) 58 Specify as in a list 59 Primed 60 Grapple 61 Edge along DOWN 1 Harmful 2 Viewing 3 Remove (a player) 4 Lingers 5 Leave stranded 6 Pending (2,3) 7 Retained 8 Liquor manufacturing plant 9 Throughout 10 Secures 15 Direction 16 Tot of liquor 19 Regrettably 21 Sore 23 Dairy product 24 Bowl 26 Marine creature (3,4) 28 Consecutive 31 Bloodsucking worm 33 Pretend (4-7) 34 Short-lived 38 Above 41 Handle 42 Bound 43 Battery-powered 44 Overpraise 48 Vaccinate 49 Contaminated 51 Drama set to music 53 Living fence 55 Silverbeet or Swiss ... 56 Cat’s cry TINY CROSS WORD FIND All the words listed below can be found in the grid. SOLUTIONS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Art Break Bunny City Correcting Cream Dew Dip Dry Dyed Eager Ethnic Flats Gap Get Incorrect Ink Led Lid Mrs Mug Pat Pig Rapids Representing Scales Tell Titles Yea Yoga Z D T F V G B P V P K G K C E W U A K L A Y A G N G B L F E Y I A E N T N I I T E L L D D E Y D S I T S K E G R E G A E A R T C K N I S D I P A R Q M N E K P R A A G M B P K A E R B I C G I S U T Q A C S R U Y B M J W C I N H T E O N O U L C M M A M A E R C N G M D H T I T L E S P N Y A F G V A M F G E Q E I R U T E G R V K V M S R P D ACROSS 1 Gift tag word 5 Volcanic  ow 6 A long time 7 Writes DOWN 1 Flag movement 2 Anger 3 Microwave 4 Physics calculation TARGET TIME anta, aorta, ASTRONAUT, attar, attorn, aunt, auto, oast, oust, outran, rant, rata, rattan, roast, rota, roust, rout, runt, rust, snort, snout, sonata, sort, star, start, stator, stoa, stoat, stout, strata, strut, stun, stunt, sutra, tana, tanto, tarn, taro, tarot, tart, tartan, taunt, taut, toast, tonus, torn, tort, torus, tost, tour, tout, trona, trot, trout, truant, trust, tsar, tuna, turn, tutor, unto. TINY CROSS ACROSS: 1 From, 5 Lava, 6 Ages, 7 Pens. DOWN: 1 Flap, 2 Rage, 3 Oven, 4 Mass. QUICK WORKOUT SOLUTION 3 Fit the into that touch, same. repeated © bmpuzzles Distributed Barbara Midgley 3 4 6 6 4 5 1 2 4 2 6 4 3 1 1 1 2 4 3 5 6 5 1 1 5 2 2 1 3 2 2 5 3 3 4 3 1 6 6 4 1 4 6 5 2 2 4 5 5 3 6 1 3 6 2 4 4 3 5 6 6 5 4 4 5 2 3 3 1 1 3 2 2 6 6 5 5 1 6 6 4 5 5 6 1 1 2 6 4 1 3 1 3 2 4 3 5 6 Fit the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 into the hexagons so that where the hexagons touch, the numbers will be the same. No number is repeated in any hexagon. TULOS NO 3 Fit the numbers 1-6 once into every hexagon so that where the hexagons touch, the numbers are the same. No number is repeated in any single hexagon. © bmpuzzles Distributed by Knight Features 703 200926 Barbara Midgley 3 4 6 6 4 5 1 2 4 2 6 4 3 1 1 1 2 4 3 5 6 5 1 1 5 2 2 1 3 2 2 5 3 3 4 3 1 6 6 4 1 4 6 5 2 2 4 5 5 3 6 1 3 6 2 4 4 3 5 6 6 5 4 4 5 2 3 3 1 1 3 2 2 6 6 5 5 1 6 6 4 5 5 6 1 1 2 6 4 1 3 1 3 2 4 3 5 6 DRESS HEMLOCK DWARF E Y O A N E I L A SKINDIVER IMPOSTORS T N E E O C T T N T REGULAR OWED SINGLE U SANE R L N COPING L SCAB LOSES T A E ASTHMA E E IRIS ELSE E SARCASM V N T E ROE Y L A ENFORCE SANG RINK U A CHALET C O E FELON HALO O HOBNOB L S F PIPI R E ATOMIC THEN MEDICAL T P T M E J P L H I THETOPEND ENUMERATE E R R O G C R S R V READY WRESTLE SIDLE Z D T F V G B P V P K G K C E W U A K L A Y A G N G B L F E Y I A E N T N I I T E L L D D E Y D S I T S K E G R E G A E A R T C K N I S D I P A R Q M N E K P R A A G M B P K A E R B I C G I S U T Q A C S R U Y B M J W C I N H T E O N O U L C M M A M A E R C N G M D H T I T L E S P N Y A F G V A M F G E Q E I R U T E G R V K V M S R P D Puzzles and pagination supplied by Auspac Media PUZZLES AND WEEKLY HOROSCOPE



ABC, 7.30pm


ABC, 8.30pm

The beauty of this long-running detective series –returning for its 13th season tonight – lies not just in the high-end, gorgeous Northumberland scenery cultivated with medieval churches and windswept cli s overlooking the moody coastline. It’s the titular detective (Brenda Blethyn, pictured), grumbling and bluntly speaking her mind, who is categorically enchanting. These three new episodes feature an admirably unguessable whodunnit involving a hit and run in a serene country lane. The return of Joe Ashworth (David Leon), who worked with Vera over a decade ago, unsettles the power dynamic and irks our otherwise un appable, lovably unkempt lawwoman.


ABC, 9pm

Feed into the artistic spirit with this inspired new series fronted by the warm and inquisitive Virginia Trioli.

Like a mimosa among a shout of whiskeys, this amiable crime comedy is light and airy with a nose for fun. It’s the antithesis to crime shows that concentrate on the dark and disturbing side of murder – if you’re fond of distractions such as Father Brown and Death in Paradise, this beautifully polished crime caper will tickle your fancy. The sublime French terrain and buildings set the tone, with sun and whimsy the overarching focus as chief magistrate Antoine Verlaque (Endeavour’s Roger Allam) and his glamorous criminal psychologist lover Marine Bonnet (none other than Father Brown’s Nancy Carroll, pictured with Allam) play detective in the small town of Aix-en-Provence. 0504

FRIDAY, April 5

ABC TV (2) SBS (3)

6.00 News. 9.00 News. 10.00 QI. (PG, R)

10.30 That Paci c Sports Show. (R) 11.00

Antiques Roadshow. (R) 12.00 News. 1.00

Silent Witness. (Malv, R) 2.00 House Of Gods. (Final, Ml, R) 2.55 Old People’s Home For 4 Year Olds. (R)

3.55 Long Lost Family. (PG, R)

4.40 Grand Designs. (R)

5.30 Antiques Roadshow. (R)

6.30 Hard Quiz. (PG, R)

Presented by Tom Gleeson.

7.00 ABC News. A look at the top stories of the day.

7.35 Gardening Australia. Millie Ross propagates new plants.

8.35 Happy Valley. (Malv)

As Tommy’s big day approaches, Catherine becomes suspicious and Ryan nds a new way to defy her.

9.35 Hard Quiz. (PG, R) Presented by Tom Gleeson

10.05 The Weekly With Charlie Pickering. (R) A satirical news program.

10.35 QI. (PGa, R)

11.10 ABC Late News.

11.25 Western Stars. (PG, R)

12.45 Belgravia. (Final, PG, R)

1.35 Rage. (MA15+adhlnsv)

6.00 WorldWatch. 9.00 Destination Flavour: Singapore Bitesize. (PGa, R) 9.20 Paul O’Grady: For The Love Of Dogs. (PGa, R) 10.20 Puppy

Secrets: The First Six Months. (R) 11.20

Mountain Vets. (M) 12.00 WorldWatch. 2.00 Mastermind Aust. (R) 3.00 NITV News: Nula. 3.40 The Cook Up. (PG, R) 4.10 World’s Most Scenic River Journeys. (R) 5.05 Jeopardy! (R)

5.30 Letters And Numbers. (R)


(R) Part 1 of 4.

8.30 Michael Palin: Into Iraq. (PG, R) Part 1 of 3.

9.25 Secrets Of The Lost Liners: Normandie. (PGa, R) Takes a look at ocean liners. 10.15 SBS World News Late. 10.45 A French Case. (Malv)

11.45 Max Anger: With One Eye Open. (Malv, R)

3.20 Mastermind Australia. (R)

4.20 Bamay. (R)

5.00 NHK World English News Morning. 5.30 ANC Philippines The World Tonight.


6.00 Sunrise. 9.00 The Morning Show.

6.00 7News Local.

6.30 7News @ 6:30.

7.00 Better Homes And Gardens. Johanna Griggs and Clarissa Feildel cook a tasty fried rice. Adam Dovile builds a modular lounge that’s made to last.

8.30 MOVIE: The Bone Collector. (1999, Mlv, R) After a murder leaves detectives ba ed, they call on the aid of a paralysed forensic expert to help solve the case. He then enlists a quick-thinking policewoman to be his eyes and ears on the ground. Denzel Washington, Angelina Jolie, Queen Latifah.

11.00 To Be Advised.

12.00 The Arrangement. (Mav, R)

2.00 Home Shopping.

4.00 Million Dollar Minute. (R)

5.00 NBC Today. News and current a airs.

The two-time Walkley Award-winning journo explores the seed of artists’ creative force in this six-part series that traverses acting, performing, writing and visual arts. The exciting line-up of visionaries includes Samson & Delilah director Warwick Thornton, stage and screen star Marta Dusseldorp, comedian and Hard Quiz host Tom Gleeson, and boundary-pushing artist Patricia Piccinini. In tonight’s enchanting premiere, celebrated writer Trent Dalton (pictured with Trioli), whose semi-autobiographical book Boy Swallows Universe is now a hit miniseries on Net ix, shares how creativity saved his life.

TEN (5) NBN (8, 80)

6.00 NBN News.

7.30 Rugby League. NRL. Round 5. Newcastle Knights v St George Illawarra Dragons.

9.55 Golden Point. Post-match NRL wrap-up.

10.45 MOVIE: Out Of Time. (2003, Mlv, R) A police chief


6.30 The Project. A look at the day’s news.

7.30 Ready Steady Cook. Everyday Aussie home cooks team up with some of the country’s nest chefs and go head to head in the kitchen.

8.30 The Graham Norton Show. (PGa, R) Graham Norton is joined on the red couch by actors Daniel Craig and Sir Ian McKellen, presenter Clive Myrie and comedian John Bishop. Singer-songwriter Charlie Puth performs his song Loser

10.30 Fire Country. (PGa, R) The crew works to contain a forest re.

11.30 The Project. (R) A look at the day’s news.

12.30 The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. (PG) Hosted by Stephen Colbert.

1.30 Home Shopping. (R)

(PG) 11.30 Seven Morning News. 12.00 MOVIE: Mommy Group Murder. (2018, Masv, R) 2.00 Beat The Chasers UK. 3.00 The Chase. (R) 4.00 Seven News At 4. 5.00 The Chase Australia. 6.00 Today. 9.00 Today Extra. (PG) 11.30 9News Morning. 12.00 MOVIE: Scented With Love. (2022, PGa, R) 2.00 Pointless. (PG) 3.00 Tipping Point. (PG) 4.00 9News Afternoon. 5.00 Tipping Point Australia. (PG) 6.00 Morning Programs. 8.30 Neighbours. (PGa, R) 9.00 Bold. (PGas, R) 9.30 Deal Or No Deal. (R) 10.00 GCBC. (R) 10.30 Judge Judy. (PG, R) 11.00 Dr Phil. (PGas, R) 12.00 10 News First: Midday. 1.00 Ent. Tonight. 1.30 Judge Judy. (PG) 2.00 Ready Steady Cook. (PGa, R) 3.00 GCBC. 3.30 10 News First: Afternoon. 4.00 Everyday Gourmet. (R) 4.30 Bold. (PGas) 5.00 News.
Mastermind Australia. 6.30 SBS World News. 7.35 Ancient Egypt By Train: Alexandria.
7.00 A Current A air.
murder. Denzel Washington. 12.55 Tipping Point.
R) 1.55 Pointless. (PG, R) 2.55 Garden Gurus Moments.
The team provides some tips and tricks. 3.00 TV Shop: Home Shopping. (R) 4.00 Postcards. (PG, R) 4.30 Global Shop. (R) 5.00 TV Shop: Home Shopping. (R) 5.30 Skippy The Bush Kangaroo. (R)
a double
Or No
6am WorldWatch. 10.00 The Movie Show. Noon WorldWatch. 12.25 Story Of Late Night. 1.10 The Swiping Game. 1.30 Hustle. 2.20 Over The Black Dot. 3.10 WorldWatch. 5.15 The Wine Lovers’ Guide To Australia. 5.50 The UnXplained. 6.40 Jeopardy! 7.35 8 Out Of 10 Cats Does Countdown. 8.30 Hoarders. 9.25 Sex Tape Finland. 11.15 Erotic Stories. 12.20am Hypothetical. 2.00 Icons Unearthed: James Bond. 2.50 NHK World English News. 5.00 Late Programs. 6am Morning Programs. 7.30 Room For Improvement. 8.00 Million Dollar Minute. 9.00 Harry’s Practice. 9.30 NBC Today. Noon Better Homes. 1.00 Escape To The Country. 2.00 The Real Seachange. 2.30 Weekender. 3.00 Imagine Holidays Iconic Rail Journeys. 3.30 Harry’s Practice. 4.00 Animal Rescue. 4.30 Better Homes. 5.30 Escape To The Country. 6.30 Bargain Hunt. 7.30 The Yorkshire Steam Railway: All Aboard. 8.30 Escape To The Country. 11.30 Late Programs. 6am Home Shopping. 8.00 Soccer. A-League Men. Round 22. Melbourne Victory v Perth Glory. Highlights. 8.30 Ready Steady Cook. 9.30 Diagnosis Murder. 11.30 JAG. 1.30pm NCIS. 2.30 Jake And The Fatman. 3.30 Diagnosis Murder. 5.30 JAG. 7.30 Bull. 8.30 NCIS. 9.25 NCIS: Hawai’i. 11.15 Diagnosis Murder. 12.15am Home Shopping. 2.15 Diagnosis Murder. 4.05 JAG. 6am Seaway. 7.00 Cre o Dollar Ministries. 7.30 Skippy The Bush Kangaroo. 8.00 TV Shop: Home Shopping. 10.30 Pointless. 11.30 My Favorite Martian. Noon Days Of Our Lives. 12.55 The Young And The Restless. 1.50 Explore. 2.00 Dr Quinn, Medicine Woman. 3.00 Antiques Roadshow. 3.30 MOVIE: Brothers In Law. (1957) 5.30 Yorkshire Auction House. 6.30 Antiques Roadshow. 7.30 David Attenborough’s Dynasties II. 8.40 MOVIE: Toy Soldiers. (1991, M) 10.55 Late Programs. BOLD (51) 9GEM (82) 7TWO (62) VICELAND (31) 6am Children’s Programs. 6.40pm Andy’s Global Adventures. 6.55 Shaun The Sheep. 7.05 Karma’s World. 7.20 Bluey. 7.30 Would I Lie To You? 8.30 MOVIE: Taxi Driver. (1976, MA15+) 10.25 MOVIE: If Beale Street Could Talk. (2018, MA15+) 12.20am Would I Lie To You? 1.20 Close To Me. 2.10 George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces. 2.55 Everything’s Gonna Be Okay. 3.40 ABC News Update. 3.45 Close. 5.00 Hoopla. 5.15 Ready, Jet, Go! 5.25 Pablo. 5.40 Late Programs. ABC TV PLUS (22) 6am Children’s Programs. Noon Motor Racing. FIA World Endurance C’ship. H’lights. 1.00 Rich House, Poor House. 2.00 Bewitched. 2.30 Full House. 3.00 The Nanny. 3.30 Raymond. 4.30 The Addams Family. 5.00 Bewitched. 5.30 MOVIE: Oddball. (2015) 7.30 MOVIE: Doctor Dolittle. (1998, PG) 9.15 MOVIE: Forgetting Sarah Marshall. (2008, MA15+) 11.30 Dating No Filter. 12.30am Medium. 1.30 Below Deck. 2.30 Full House. 3.00 Bakugan: Evolutions. 3.30 Beyblade Burst Surge. 4.00 Late Programs. 6am Morning Programs. 7.30 Creek To Coast. 8.00 NFL 100 Greatest. 9.00 A Football Life. 10.00 Blokesworld. 10.30 American Restoration. 11.00 American Pickers. Noon Pawn Stars. 1.00 Counting Cars. 2.00 Storage Wars: Barry’s Best Buys. 3.00 Timbersports. 3.30 Cities Of The Underworld. 4.30 Storage Wars. 5.00 American Restoration. 5.30 American Pickers. 6.30 Pawn Stars. 7.30 AFL: Friday Night Countdown. 8.00 Football. AFL. Round 4. Port Adelaide v Essendon. 11.00 Late Programs. 6am The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. 7.00 Becker. 8.00 NBL Slam. 8.30 The Big Bang Theory. 9.00 So Help Me Todd. 11.00 Becker. Noon Frasier. 1.00 The Middle. 2.00 The Big Bang Theory. 3.00 The King Of Queens. 4.00 Good Chef Bad Chef. 4.30 Becker. 5.30 Frasier. 6.30 The Big Bang Theory. 8.30 Two And A Half Men. 11.00 Frasier. Midnight Shopping. 1.30 Stephen Colbert. 2.30 South Park. 3.30 Bold. 4.30 Shopping. 5.30 Joseph Prince. 9GO! (83) 6am Looking Up. (2019, PG, Mandarin) 8.45 After Yang. (2021, PG) 10.30 Dark City. (1998, M) 12.25pm I Can Quit Whenever I Want 3. (2018, M, Italian) 2.20 CJ7. (2008, PG, Cantonese) 4.00 Binti. (2019, PG, Dutch) 5.40 An Ideal Husband. (1999, PG) 7.30 Mars Attacks! (1996, M) 9.30 Gone Girl. (2014, MA15+) 12.15am The One I Love. (2014, M) 1.55 Riders Of Justice. (2020, MA15+, Danish) 4.05 I Am Michael. (2015, M) PEACH (52) 7MATE (64) SBS MOVIES (32) 6am Children’s Programs. 2.25pm FriendZSpace. 3.00 Get Blake! 3.25 Coop Troop. 3.40 100% Wolf: Legend Of The Moonstone. 4.00 Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs. 4.20 Planet Lulin. 4.45 Operation Ouch! 5.00 Lagging. 5.25 Miraculous. 5.45 Total DramaRama. 6.00 Hank Zipzer. 6.30 Operation Ouch! 7.00 Horrible Histories. 7.35 Kung Fu Panda: Legends Of Awesomeness. 8.00 Transformers: EarthSpark. 8.20 Dragon Ball Super. 9.10 Dwight In Shining Armour. 9.35 Phoenix Rise. 11.15 Close. ABC ME (23) 6am News Programs. 1pm ABC News Day. 3.00 News. 4.00 Afternoon Brie ng. 5.00 ABC News. 6.00 ABC News Hour. 7.00 ABC National News. 7.35 ABC Evening News. 8.00 ABC News Tonight. 8.30 Back Roads. (Final) 9.00 The World. 9.30 Close Of Business. 10.00 ABC Nightly News. 10.30 World This Week. 11.00 News. 11.30 Breakfast Couch. Midnight News. 12.30 Price Of Progress: Indonesia’s Nickel Rush. 1.00 News. 1.15 Close Of Business. 1.45 If You’re Listening. 2.00 Late Programs. ABC NEWS (24) 6am Morning Programs. 7.30 Postcards. 8.00 Garden Gurus. 8.30 The Block. 9.30 House Hunters Int. 10.30 Hello SA. 11.00 Barnwood Builders. Noon Renovate Or Rebuild. 1.00 Unsellable Houses. 2.00 My Lottery Dream Home. 3.00 The Block. 4.00 Barnwood Builders. 5.00 Fixer Upper. 6.00 House Hunters Int. 7.00 House Hunters. 7.30 Scott’s Vacation House Rules. (Return) 8.30 Houses With History. 9.30 To Be Advised. 10.30 Renovation Impossible. 11.30 Late Programs. 6am Morning Programs. 11.30 Lidia’s Kitchen. Noon Everyday Gourmet. 12.30 Masters Of Savours. 1.30 Dolce Homemade. 2.00 Mexican Table. 2.30 Food Lover’s Guide. 3.00 Australia’s Food Bowl. 3.30 Ainsley’s Good Mood Food. 4.30 Comfort Food. 5.00 Everyday Gourmet. 5.30 Cook Like An Italian. 6.00 Luke Nguyen’s India. 6.30 Lidia’s Kitchen. 7.00 The Cook Up. 7.30 Rick Stein: From Venice To Istanbul. 8.40 Extreme Food Phobics. 9.35 Come Dine With Me Daytime. 10.30 The Cook Up. 11.00 Late Programs. 9LIFE (84) 6am Morning Programs. 9.00 News. 9.30 News. 10.00 AM Agenda. 11.00 NewsDay. Noon News. 12.30 News. 1.00 The Kenny Report. 2.00 Afternoon Agenda. 3.00 Paul Murray Live. 4.00 Afternoon Agenda. 4.30 Business Now With Ross Greenwood. 5.00 Erin. 6.00 Steve Price. 7.00 Prime Time. 8.00 The US Report. 9.00 The Media Show. 9.30 NewsNight. 10.00 NewsNight. 11.00 Late Programs. 6am Morning Programs. 10.50 News. 11.00 Going Places. Noon MOVIE: The Last Wave. (1977, PG) 1.50 Yarning Culture Through Film. 2.00 Going Places. 2.30 The Cook Up. 3.00 Bushwhacked! 3.25 Fresh Fairytales. 3.40 The Magic Canoe. 4.05 Spartakus And The Sun Beneath The Sea. 4.35 Grace Beside Me. 5.00 Our Stories. 5.30 NITV News: Nula. 6.00 Bamay. 6.40 Wild Survivors. 7.30 Eddie’s Lil’ Homies. 7.45 MOVIE: Molly. (1983) 9.20 MOVIE: Bio-Dome. (1996, MA15+) 11.00 Late Programs. SKY NEWS (53) NITV (34) SBS FOOD (33) Please Note: Programs are correct at the time of print and are subject to change by the Networks. CONSUMER ADVICE (P) Pre-school (C) Children (PG) Parental Guidance Recommended (M) Mature Audiences (MA15+) Mature Audiences Only (R) Repeat (CC) Closed Captions (a) Adult themes (d) Drug references (h) Horror (s) Sex references (l) Language (m) Medical procedures (n) Nudity (v) Violence.



1 Who was the first Treasurer of Australia?

(a) George Turner

(b) Andrew Fisher

(c) Chris Watson

(d) John Forrest

2 As at 2023, which country has won the most softball gold medals at the Summer Olympics?

(a) Australia

(b) Japan

(c) China

(d) United States

3 Who won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in the 1994 movie, Blue Sky?

(a) Meryl Streep

(b) Emma Thompson

(c) Jessica Lange

(d) Susan Sarandon

4 The Gambia is almost entirely surrounded by which country?

(a) Senegal

(b) Gabon

(c) Tanzania

(d) Sierra Leone

5 J. Robert Oppenheimer is often referred to as the ‘father of the’ what?

(a) Internet

(b) United Nations (c) Atomic bomb

(d) Modern orchestra

6 Who wrote the 1939 play, Arsenic and Old Lace, on which the 1944 movie of the same name was based?

(a) Joseph Kesselring

(b) Noël Coward

(c) Eugene O’Neill

(d) Harold Pinter


Here is a crossword with a di erence, all the letters of the alphabet are represented by a number in the grid and there are no clues. Some letters have been given as clues to get you started, use the code cracker grid below to keep track of each letter and their coded number.



Which is the correct meaning for these words?

1 ATTRITION (a) An attracting force (b) Wearing down (c) Act of atoning

2 CONSTELLATE (a) To cluster together (b) To fill with dismay (c) To construct grammatically

3 LABILE (a) Formed by the lips (b) Unstable (c) Strenuous

4 RIDENT (a) Laughing or beamingly smiling (b) Speaking obscurely (c) Mocking

5 SOBRIQUET (a) A nickname (b) The national assembly of Bulgaria (c) An old French coin


Letters A to Z have a number value Some are shown in the right hand cells Create remaining values using clues in centre cells

ACROSS 2 Pulpit discourse 6 Love god 9 Sacri cial table 10 Heathen 11 Uttered gratingly 13 Of di erent kinds combined 14 Amend 16 Fastener 17 Mature 18 English composer 19 Kingdom 21 Make bare 22 Serpents 23 Game of skill 26 Talisman 27 Former Spanish currency unit 28 Merry frolic 30 Dissolve 33 Critical times 36 Puzzling question 37 Social class 38 Girl’s name 39 Chairperson’s mallet 40 Attacker 42 Leading 43 Cruise ships 44 Narrates 45 Sends out 46 Zodiac sign 47 Spirited mounts DOWN 1 Assert without proof 2 Hindu garment 3 Rubbed out 4 Perform surgery 5 Lowest point 6 Judge’s chambers 7 Combines 8 Standards of perfection 12 Picks out 14 Arranged like rays 15 Braves dangers of 20 Satis ed 24 Ghost 25 Mooring cable 29 Practical person 30 Parent 31 Papal ambassador 32 Buys and sells 34 Brought up 35 Happenings 37 Prison rooms 41 Doctrines SOLUTIONS Puzzles and pagination supplied by Auspac Media No. 8488 Across 2 Package 6 Kingly 9 Large 10 Light beer 11 Pamper 13 Cavalry sword 14 Calm 16 Worth 17 Metal-bearing rock 18 Anaesthetic 19 Echo sounder 21 Aid 22 Walked 23 Additional 26 Esculent 27 More offensive to sight 28 Cults 30 Nuisance 44 Called as cattle 45 Dogma 46 Harbour 47 Meal Down 1 Commands 2 Step 3 Makes amends 4 Component 5 Coming after 6 Oppose 7 Public speaker 8 At large 12 Furniture items 14 Flew upwards 15 Breathed 20 Name expressing resemblance 32 Sea-god 34 Has being 35 Jumpy state 37 Unlucky contestant 41 To let stand DAILY CONVENTIONAL CROSSWORD 15 X 15 GRID Q Created: Ted Whillier Qxpress: 8488 Matt Trickey Checked: Rosemary Note to Editor: Created in QUARK XPRESS. VER.4.03 Items not needed for publication can be erased as each is in a separate text box. Yesterday’s Solution SDG S P O I L S R R P R H O M A G E F T E L L L A T E N T N E E D E F E R P I A V I S C A N T C T R E M E R R I S E N A M E N N E C S K I T T T C O O S I S T E R Quick Crossword 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 12 13 11 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 Auspac Media The Features People PO Box 8271 Bundall Qld Australia 4217 A S E R M O N C U P I D A L T A R P A G A N D L R A S P E D M X E D R E V I S E R V E T A A G E E L G A R R E A L M D E N U D E T A S P S T C H E S S P H A M U L E T P E S E T A L R S P R E E A W M E L T E C R S E S P O S E R C A S T E E V E T G A V E L R A D E R A H E A D L I N E R S N E T E L L S E M I T S A R I E S S T E E D S S WEEKLY CROSSWORD G B O W L E G A D O L M I X U P S H O W B E I T M Y A E U E T B A W L L O V E R L A Z Y E M E I J U M P Y R Q U A N G O U R U I U G A N D A C N E R T O R C C Z E S T A B A C K L I E F N H Z G L A X U N E A R T H M Y S T I C U L E E N F E C T L CROSSCODE 15 4 24 16 1 7 15 23 19 24 1 10 12 18 3 20 11 8 24 16 4 7 12 6 10 26 23 7 3 7 6 4 23 16 1 1 24 14 7 21 1 23 25 26 7 10 7 12 17 3 10 20 26 21 2 3 23 13 15 24 3 21 3 12 U 3 G 15 23 13 D 19 23 5 12 13 7 21 6 24 21 5 5 25 7 11 6 23 4 23 5 22 1 12 7 9 13 8 25 15 1 23 18 3 13 7 23 21 6 8 10 26 11 6 12 5 3 1 7 7 12 13 9 7 5 6 1
1 2 U 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 G 15 16 17 18 D 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26
© Auspac Media - AK1279 A J-O 2 N A×L 10 B F+P O K-X C S+P P S+A D E÷V Q T+D E P×A R O+H F M+Y S R÷D 7 G F×A 26 T H+S H M+D U Y×A I O+D V E÷D J L+Q W L+N K Z+A X S+M L D+A Y S+L M U-Z Z X+W 23 A B C D E F G H I J K L M 2 22 16 3 18 13 26 4 20 19 25 5 1 N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z Letters A to Z have a number value. Some are shown in the right hand cells. Create remaining values using clues in centre cells. ALFAKODO WHICH WORDS 1 (b) Wearing down 2 (a) To cluster together 3 (b) Unstable 4 (a) Laughing or beamingly smiling 5 (a) A nickname
SUDOKU 1 5 3 7 6 9 2 8 9 7 6 4 4 9 5 7 3 1 6 4 8 5 3 7 Fill in the blank cells using numbers from 1 to 9. Each number can only appear
row, column
3x3 block. MEDIUM HARD 9 2 1 4 5 5 6 1 1 4 4 2 7 6 8 8 2 6 3 2 3 8 3 7 9 4 1 4 3 9 8 5 7 6 2 2 8 5 4 7 6 3 9 1 7 6 9 2 1 3 8 5 4 9 2 7 5 6 8 4 1 3 6 3 8 1 2 4 9 7 5 4 5 1 7 3 9 2 8 6 3 1 6 8 4 7 5 2 9 5 7 2 3 9 1 6 4 8 8 9 4 6 5 2 1 3 7 SUDOKU MEDIUM SUDOKU HARD 4 8 7 5 6 2 9 1 3 3 2 9 8 1 7 4 6 5 5 6 1 4 3 9 8 2 7 8 1 6 2 5 4 3 7 9 9 4 2 3 7 6 1 5 8 7 3 5 9 8 1 2 4 6 1 7 4 6 9 8 5 3 2 2 9 3 7 4 5 6 8 1 6 5 8 1 2 3 7 9 4 ALFAKODO © Auspac Media - AK1279 © Auspac Media - AK1279 K Z+A X S+M L D+A Y S+L M Z-U Z X+W 23 A B C D E F G H I J K L M 2 22 16 3 18 13 26 4 20 19 25 5 1 N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 10 17 9 14 21 7 11 24 6 15 8 12 23 © Auspac Media - AK1279 © Auspac Media - AK1279 K Z+A X S+M L D+A Y S+L M Z-U Z X+W 23 A B C D E F G H I J K L M 2 22 16 3 18 13 26 4 20 19 25 5 1 N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 10 17 9 14 21 7 11 24 6 15 8 12 23 TIME FOR TRIVIA: 1 (a) George Turner 2 (d) United States 3 (c) Jessica Lange 4 (a) Senegal 5 (c) Atomic bomb 6 (a) Joseph Kesselring 4 3 21 7 1 23 4 3 21 7 1 23 1 2 6 4 8 5 3 9 7 NUMBER CRUNCH 4 3 21 7 1 23 4 3 21 7 1 23 1 2 6 4 8 5 3 9 7 Place the digits 1 to 9 in the blue squares, so that all 6 equations are correct. Multiplication and/or division are performed rst, in whichever order they appear –followed by addition and/or subtraction, in whichever order they appear.
once in each


A magical outdoor theatre show for kids in Lismore Rainforest Botanic Gardens. 16-28 April, 2024 (April School Holidays)Lismore Rainforest Botanic Gardens

Have you heard fungi talk? Have you felt the forest hum?

Understory is a magical, interactive theatre adventure created for children by Roundabout Theatre, springing to life in the Lismore Rainforest Botanic Gardens this April school holidays from 16-28 April 2024.

Part theatre, part quest and part wacky science feld trip, Understory is made to inspire children aged 7-11 years with a deep curiosity, wonder and connection to the natural world. The entire Hoop Pine Forest at Lismore Rainforest Botanic Gardens will become an enchanting theatrical world brought to life by an original story that is both

fantastical and based in science and ecology principles.

Understory is engaging and interactive with small groups of children participating in each 90 minute show.

Accompanied by two ‘Wonderer’ characters, children embark on an important mission to save the forest from disarray. On their quest they will need to collect clues, solve puzzles, crack codes, navigate obstacle courses and work together with the forest to shape the journey and the outcome.

Valley Lipcer, Roundabout Theatre Artistic Director and Understory’s writer and director, says, “Children are called to adventure with the main characters

from the Understory world and actively progress the story through imaginative problem solving, riddles and activities.”

“The Understory experience is imaginative theatrical play in nature where children learn about the environment and ecology via a wondrous fantasy world,” says Valley Lipcer “Through the show’s incredible design the children will meet talking fungi, whispering trees, booming rocks, nests of song, and will experience a myriad of surprising obstacles and whimsical interactions along the path.”

The Understory quest begins from the moment a ticket is purchased. An invitation is sent to

your child (via email to parents/carers), inviting them to be ‘Wonderers’ and outlining the adventure ahead. Roundabout Theatre has also developed a highly interactive website at www.understory. to accompany the show. Parents and carers are encouraged to direct their children to the email and the website before they arrive at the show, so they are informed on how to be part of the Understory adventure.

Charlotte Pritchard, a Year 3 teacher from The Living School, described the experience for her class when they attended Understory during its creative development stage. “It

was a truly magical and engaging experience for the students. It was so special for them to be outdoors, learning about nature, science, life cycles, in such a creative way, getting them to work together and problem solve. I have never seen anything like it before and we were truly blown away by how unique and special it was.”

Don’t miss out on discovering the magical adventure of Understory in the Lismore Rainforest Botanic Garden these April school holidays!


• Understory

• By Roundabout Theatre

• 16 -28 April, 2024 (except 17, 22, 25


• 2 shows daily 10am & 2.30pm

• Lismore Rainforest Botanic Gardens, 313 Wyrallah Rd, Lismore

• Tickets $30 (group discounts available)

• Bookings & more info: www. understory.

• Recommended for children aged 7-11 years.

• Each show goes for 90 mins and children will walk approx 1km during the show.

• Access: Please contact us with questions about your access needs at valley@


In a world hungry for transparency, Didirri has mesmerized fans throughout his brief career with his magnetic charisma and sincere approach to songwriting. With over 75 million global streams and an ARIA gold accreditation for ‘Blind You,’ Didirri continues to captivate, and his much-anticipated debut album, “Caught In The Act,” embarks on a poignant journey through eleven exquisite new tracks.

Openly delving into subjects we often shy away from, Didirri remains true to his mission of creating music for ‘lovers and overthinkers,’ weaving uninhibited lyrics that touch raw nerves and charming melodies that soothe hearts and minds.

“Caught in the Act is a labor of love during the lockdown periods in Australia. I have put so much of myself into

these songs and really dedicated my heart to this album.”

– Didirri

The Don’t Talk Tour sees Didirri embark on his frst national regional tour, playing solo in intimate venues all over Australia.


• When: Thu 4th Apr, 7:00 PM

• Where: Eltham Hotel

• Tickets: Via Moshtix

• Price: $33.69

ENTERTAINMENT 32 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024

Primary care access vital for better health outcomes in remote Australia

The second annual Royal Flying Doctor Service ‘Best for the Bush, Rural and remote Health Base Line’ report was released today.

Presenting the latest data on the health of rural and remote Australians and evidence on service gaps, the report identifes the issues that most urgently need attention from service providers, funders, partners and policy makers.

Poorer health outcomes

This report again demonstrates signifcantly poorer health outcomes and more limited access to primary health services in rural and remote Australia. This results in people from these areas getting sicker and requiring more urgent attention.

As compared with those in major cities, the report details that rural and remote residents are;

• 2.9x more likely to be hospitalized

• 2.8x more likely to be hospitalized for reasons that are potentially preventable

• 2.7x more likely to die from potentially avoidable causes

High post-COVID demands

An analysis of RFDS emergency aeromedical retrievals shows a 9% increase in the last (fnancial) year, transporting people from rural and remote areas to larger, metropolitan centres for urgent hospital care. The most common reason for retrievals remains heart, stroke and vascular disease.

Leading causes of death and illness are preventable

The leading causes for death in Australia, by remoteness are heart disease (1.9x higher than in major cities), and Diabetes (2nd leading cause of death in remote areas, while only seventh in major cities). People living in remote areas are 1.4X more likely to die from lung cancer and in

very remote areas, 1.6X more likely.

Heart disease and diabetes can be prevented through effective primary healthcare. Lung cancer and other cancers can be detected (and then treated) through screening services. Unless more comprehensive primary healthcare services are expanded into rural and remote areas, people in these communities will continue to experience higher levels of illness, avoidable hospitalisation, and earlier death.

Compared to those in major cities

• Females in very remote areas are likely to die 16 years earlier;

• Males in very remote areas are likely to die 13 years earlier; and

• Males and females have a mortality rate 1.6 times as high;

Indigenous health

Almost 60% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians live in rural or remote Areas of Australia and there is not only a gap in life expectancy between Indigenous Australians and non-Indigenous Australians of up to 12.5 years that increases with increasing remoteness, but there is a further gap amongst Indigenous people depending on where they live:

• Life expectancy for Indigenous males living in remote and very remote areas was 5.2 years lower than that of Indigenous males living in major cities (67.3 years compared with 72.5 years).

• The equivalent comparison for Indigenous females was 4.2 years lower (71.3 years compared with 76.5 years).

• 26.9% of retrieval patients were Indigenous, refecting the high proportion of Indigenous Australians living in rural and remote areas.

The Royal Flying Doctor Service

In 2022-23, the Royal Flying Doctor Service conducted 36,937 aeromedical retrievals, equivalent to 101 aeromedical retrievals per day, or four per hour. There were 137,995 RFDS face-to-face primary health consultations conducted, 28,889 primary health clinics held, 19,946 mental health consultations and 10,881 dental health consultations conducted.

“Our postcode should not be what determines access to health services”, says Frank Quinlan, Federation Executive Director of the Royal Flying Doctor Service. “All Australians should expect reasonable access to primary

healthcare services no matter where they live.

For Australians living in rural, remote and regional Australia, access simple services such as a nurse-led clinic, a GP, a dentist or a specialist is so much harder.”

The National Rural Health Alliance recently released a report detailing the comparative Government health spend between major city residents and rural and remote Australia. This shows a gap of $6.55 billion, which is a health spend shortfall of $848 per person in rural and remote Australia. Given the challenges, those that live in rural and remote Australia should be seeing a greater investment in health service expenditure and not struggling to have a parity with those in our major cities.

“As we look to reform Medicare across the country, we need help people living outside the reach of mainstream services, who rely on services outside the Medicare system.

“This report recognises “rural and remote communities need rural and remote solutions” that are designed with local communities to respond to need.

“The RFDS Best for the Bush report can bring government, service partners and communities together to solve these problems and ensure better health outcomes for our rural and remote communities.”

“Working alongside government, service partners and communities, this Best for the Bush report is continuation of the RFDS’ 100year commitment to delivering evidencebased healthcare in regional, rural and remote Australia”, said RFDS Federation Executive Director Frank Quinlan. “This will only be achieved through accessible primary healthcare”.

RURAL NEWS 33 April 4, 2024 e Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent
Product Partnerships Coraki Rural & Hardware Supplies 102-104 Queen Elizabeth Drive CORAKI

Spencer Maxwell Maher, known as Max, was born 18th January 1943, to parents Spencer known as “Penny” and Enid Maher of Goolmangar. Their family – Valerie, Nola, Max, Glen and Darryl. As Max was the eldest boy, he was given the Spencer name just like his father and Grandfather, Spencer Wesley Maher. A family trait that is handed down over the years and still carried on. Each boy in the Maher Family Tree that is born frst carries the “Spencer” name. Max grew up on the family farms at Koonorigan and Goolmangar. He always had a love for horses where he rode to school at Coffee Camp then later competing at Country Shows. Max remembers the February 1954 cyclone when raging waters from the River tore the Coffee Camp School and the local Community Hall at Coffee Camp from their stumps then fowed down the river out of site. Mr Lake, teacher in charge at Coffee Camp School and his wife Mrs Lake recalled the day when they were watching from the schoolhouse and

saw it all unfold before their eyes. A document written by Mrs Lake stated: “The school went frst tipping over in the water then hitting a tree and breaking up. The hall was shuddering and groaning, it did not want to go. Suddenly the walls opened up and out came the stools and wooden tables. Cups and plates bobbed up and down in the water and then the piano came out”. School lessons were held on the side verandah

of the schoolhouse, the teachers dwelling. The piano was found, it was high up a tree further down the river on Reg Parmenter’s farm. The Honour Roll from the hall along with the Union Jack were rescued. A new hall and school were built.

Max remembers one day after school when he and Nola were saddling up their horses to ride home and Nola threw the saddle on where the stirrup hit their teacher

Mr Blake on the head. He certainly had a bad knock. The schoolhouse was next door to Max’s Grandparents Percy and Casandra Swift. Shows were a feature of the Maher home, where it was not long before Max and Valerie were competing at the Nimbin Show. They would share the pony “Wally” between them. Their father would take them to the show in his 1948 Single Wheel Bedford. The vehicle was green with black mud guards purchased from W Robinson and Son in Lismore. Max and Valerie would compete for School Boy and School Girl of the Show. Many ribbons were won. Later Max’s father

purchased a hunting mare for Max. Her name was “Silka”. Max was 12 years of age at the time. Jumps were set up on the farm where Max would practice. The pair competed at many shows around the district.

Eventually this horse was sold to Earl Creighton for his son Guy to ride. Guy was 10 years of age at the time. They competed at Pony Club events and shows. Guy went on to be Australia’s Champion competing at Commonwealth Games. Penny, Max’s father, was no stranger to the showground as he raced trotters for years. A few of the men that Max can remember are Charlie Langley, Barry King, Ned Coleman, Ray

Essery Snr., Barry Troy, Cec Knight and Butcher Dunn. These men would always meet at Dave Wotherspoons Saddlery in North Lismore (near the Winsome Hotel) during the 1950’s. The family loved attending functions in the Goolmangar Hall. Fancy dress or Christmas Tree concerts were always held.

Max always loved country music and from an early age he would be glued to the radio every Saturday morning at 10am listening to Radio Ranch on 2LM Lismore.

Kevin Knapp was the announcer on Radio Ranch. Kevin went on to Tamworth where he started the Tamworth Country Music Festival.

RURAL NEWS 34 e Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
Valerie, Max and Nola Maher. Family dress up at Goolmangar Hall - 1950 Maher Family home on Nimbin Road

His cousin and good friend Ken Parmenter at that stage purchased a guitar, so Max was always up at the Parmenters farm learning to play the guitar. He would ride his push bike

up to Kens and stay overnight. One particular weekend, Ken’s mother, Phyllis, who was Max’s Aunty, beckoned Max to have a look on his bed. There was a guitar waiting for him. What a

great thrill. He was eight years old at the time. In later years his mother and father purchased him a guitar and one he still has (see photo). There was no stopping him now going from hall to hall singing and playing. Max would also sing and play at the concerts at Brunswick Heads, Ballina and Evans Head each Christmas. These concerts would raise money for the Life Saving Clubs in the district.

always held to this day. Ray went on to be one of the best known and loved poets in Australia. His humour and history of the area is second to none.

Max only attended one year at High School then

At frst a horse drawn plough was used on the farm then later a tractor was purchased to plough the paddocks for a paddock of corn. Max was so small on the tractor his head was hard to see above the

When it came time for High School in 1956 Max attended Lismore High along with good friend Ray Essery who lived at Booerie Creek. A friendship he has

returned to the family farm. The 125 Jersey cows were milked and the cream was picked up and taken to Norco in Lismore, by cream carrier Dick Hayes.

mudguard on the back of the tractor.

In 1960 Max decided to give the farming life away and began working at Smith Ingots buying scrap metal. The frm gave Max a new Bedford as the job took him as far as Rockhampton in the north to Coffs Harbour in the south. After two years employment at Smiths Ingots, he began working at Bytheway’s BMC dealers in Lismore, selling cars.

Continued next issue.

RURAL NEWS 35 April 4, 2024 e Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent
Penny and Enid Maher Max at Alstonville Show Valerie riding “ Wally” at the 1952 Nimbin Show Max practising show jumping at home Penny and Enid with Valerie Darryl, Max, Glen and Nola. Penny and Max Maher

National Rural Health Alliance

The Best for the Bush: Rural and Remote Health Baseline 2023 released by the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) today, shows the alarming health disparities between the 30 per cent of the Australian population living in rural, regional and remote areas and those living in cities, which aligns with the National Rural Health Alliance’s (the Alliance) call for geographic health equity.

“The Best for the Bush report demonstrates the massive health underspend in rural areas that contributes to a heavy burden of disease and shorter life expectancy. Most of these diseases are preventable with better access to primary health care,” said the Alliance Chief Executive Susi Tegen.

The report refers to the Alliance’s Evidence base for additional investment

in rural health in Australia (Nous report) which shows that rural Australians are missing out on $6.55 billion ($850 per person) each year in health care.

“The government needs to step up in its funding for rural health in a sustainable and fexible manner, without having ad hoc projects on the ground that only become band-aids.

“We stand with the RFDS in its recommendations for expanded health funding that would help remove barriers to healthcare access. It’s important to agree on a defnition

for ‘reasonable access’ to health care. The Alliance and others are working to develop minimum standards for healthcare access and we’re keen on taking this project forward with the government.

“We propose the Primary care Rural Integrated Multidisciplinary Health Services (PRIM-HS) model, which addresses the complexities in rural and remote community health service delivery, as each rural community has different health needs. The PRIM-HS model should be one of the targeted plans

for rural and remote healthcare, as the Best for the Bush report recommends, ensuring local planning and leadership in healthcare delivery.”

The Alliance also calls for a National Rural Health Strategy that aligns with the RFDS recommendation for a National Compact on Rural and Remote Health. This would be a transparent agreement to bring rural healthcare delivery under one umbrella and oversee the implementation and funding of a sustainable plan to improve health outcomes for rural,

regional and remote Australia. We see great beneft in the Australian and state/ territory governments being collaborative and equitable in how they are investing in rural and remote health.

“The Best for the Bush report is evidence that we need to set benchmarks and measure these annually so that we are accountable to rural communities for funding and to ensure that our policymakers are reminded of the dire state rural communities are in concerning healthcare accessibility. We are yet to see rural Australians

enjoying the same health benefts as their city counterparts. The Best for the Bush report provides further evidence for the government to implement, not only the recommendations of the RFDS but also the many recommendations made through their own reform and reviews of the healthcare workforce, health access and fexible funding for rural and remote communities,” Ms Tegen concluded.

The National Rural Health Alliance (the Alliance) comprises 51 national organisations committed to improving the health and wellbeing of the 7 million people in rural and remote Australia. Our diverse membership includes representation from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health sector, health professional organisations, health service providers, health educators and students.

RURAL NEWS 36 e Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024 • Hydraulic parts & equipment • Hose & Fittings • Oils • Belts • Filters • Tools • Struts • Seals • Excavator bucket teeth & blades with many more products available IF WE DON’T HAVE IT, WE WILL GET IT ! 02 6642 4401 CLARENCE COAST CONSTRUCTIONS 6643 2428 Coraki Rural & Hardware Supplies 102-104 Queen Elizabeth Drive CORAKI Do what’s best for health in the bush
Chief Executive Susi Tegen

Discover Australia’s Best Mature-Age Travel Spots

For those seeking adventure, relaxation, and unforgettable experiences later in life, Australia offers a treasure trove of destinations tailored to mature-age travellers. From serene coastal retreats to vibrant cultural hubs, here are some of the top spots that cater to the discerning tastes of mature travellers:

Nestled amidst the breathtaking landscapes of Western Australia, Margaret River beckons with its world-renowned wineries, pristine beaches, and lush forests. Explore scenic vineyards, indulge in gourmet cuisine, and rejuvenate your senses with nature walks along the rugged coastline.

For wine enthusiasts, a visit to the beautiful Barossa Valley promises an unforgettable gastronomic journey. Explore historic vineyards, savour awardwinning wines, and indulge in a range of gourmet dining experiences showcasing the fnest regional produce.

Delve into the heart of the world’s oldest rainforest at the Daintree, where lush foliage, diverse wildlife, and ancient traditions abound. Explore hidden waterfalls, embark on guided eco-tours, and experience the magic of this UNESCO World Heritage-listed wonderland.

Escape to the tranquillity of Tasmania’s East Coast, where secluded beaches, charming coastal towns, and majestic national parks await. Take a leisurely drive along the Great Eastern Drive, sample fresh seafood delights, and immerse yourself in the rich history and culture of this captivating region.

Bask in the sun-drenched beauty of Noosa, where pristine beaches, lush hinterlands, and world-class dining converge. Explore the picturesque Noosa National Park, embark on scenic river cruises, and unwind with luxurious spa treatments overlooking breathtaking ocean views.

Discover the rugged beauty of the Flinders Ranges, where towering peaks, expansive plains, and ancient rock formations create a dramatic landscape unlike any other. Immerse yourself in indigenous culture, marvel at ancient Aboriginal rock art, and embark on unforgettable outback adventures.

Whether you’re craving relaxation, cultural immersion, or outdoor exploration, Australia’s

and leave you with cherished memories that will last a lifetime.

Renowned for its laid-back atmosphere and bohemian charm, Byron Bay offers a perfect blend of relaxation and adventure. Unwind on pristine beaches, browse local markets for unique treasures, and embrace the healing energies of the region’s renowned wellness retreats.

Embark on an epic adventure through the rugged landscapes of the Kimberley region, where ancient gorges, cascading waterfalls, and vast wilderness await. Cruise along the iconic Kimberley coast, witness mesmerizing sunsets over the horizon, and immerse yourself in the rich indigenous culture of the region.

Rottnest Island sits just offshore from the city of Perth, in Western Australia. A protected nature reserve, it’s home to the quokka, a small wallaby-like marsupial. White-sand beaches and secluded coves include the Basin, with its shallow waters, and Thomson Bay, the main hub and ferry port.

TRAVEL NEWS 37 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent To Book: 0400 331 264 602 Gradys Creek Rd, Gradys Creek Relax, Rejuvenate & ripplesonthecreek Specialising in Antique, Estate, Art Deco and Reproduction Jewellery Peberdy House, 182 Rouse Street (New England Highway) Phone: 02 6736 1213 Fax: 02 6736 4545 Mobile 0429 727 075 Come and see our amazing collection when you’re on holidays in the New England Area
to fulfll your
diverse array
mature-age travel spots promises
every desire
1. Margaret River, Western Australia 4. Barossa Valley, South Australia 7. The Daintree Rainforest, Queensland 2. Tasmania’s East Coast 5. Noosa, Queensland 8. The Flinders Ranges, South Australia 3. Byron Bay, New South Wales 6. The Kimberley, Western Australia 9. Rottnest Island, Western Australia

Grape Expectations by Max Crus

Max Crus is a Clarence Valley-based wine writer and Grape Expectations is now in its 27th year of publication. Find out more about Max or sign up for his weekly reviews and musings by visiting

The land of milk and money.

Apparently, there’s a kerfuffe about a new-ish product on supermarket shelves and the dairy industry would be ropable except they’re part of the problem.

Yes, toddler milk is the latest craze for busy, lazy and uninformed parents and the whole concept of milk is again threatened.

The bearded-hipster notion that if you squeeze something hard enough

(Oxford Landing) One to One SA Cabernet Sauvignon 2021, $20. Like toddler milk, the new face of Oxford Landing’s lightweight bottle also weighs about 900grams, but costs half as much. Better still, it has about a tenth of the residual sugar of toddler milk and is vegan friendly to boot.

you get vegan milk really gets on the goat of the milk industry, whether it’s from a goat or not, but toddler milk raises that Milky Bar to new heights.

Naturally not even the dairy industry believes toddlers are harmed in making toddler milk, although toddlers will be harmed if it’s used as directed, according to nutritionists. It’s got twice the sugar of cow’s milk, on

kids. 8.9/10.

(Oxford Landing) One to One SA Shiraz 2021, $20. One reason shiraz is such a favourite in Australia is even relatively cheap ones are pretty serviceable, as is this. It’s a bit ‘bulk wine’ in attitude but you wouldn’t knock it back at a barbecue. 9/10.

(Oxford Landing) One to


That’s average cows and average toddler milks of which there are almost as many because the above parents can’t get enough of it.

However do toddlers really need milk? Probably not, but we’ve been feeding it to them for millennia, and they’ve survived.

Toddler milk though is very different. We never had rubbish like that as

For the Crus household this was the pick of the fve options which includes chardonnay and merlot. Simple but smart enough stuff and if you close your eyes and think of England you can smell the rose petals mentioned on the label. 9.1/10.

Tamburlaine Organic Wines Orange Wine

kids, although…what’s the difference between toddler milk and regular milk with a teaspoon of Milo?

Thanks for asking. As it happens, quite a bit. Peters Ice Cream bragged it was the “health food of a nation”, until they were told not to because it wasn’t, but toddler milks have found a way around the rules! Allegedly it helps with Immune Support, Cognitive Function, Energy

Blanc 2022, $39. The name is a dead giveaway to an older time when ‘O’rings were made of wood, ice cream was good for you and sav blanc was king and called funny things like fumé blanc. Delicious nostalgia in every glass. 9.4/10.

Tamburlaine Organic Wines Orange Wine

Metabolism (whatever that is), Healthy Vision, etc, but then so does water.

Another difference is the dose. One toddler milk brand suggests 7 scoops (not teaspoons, SCOOPS) per serve, 3 times a day!

Mum belted us with the wooden spoon if we put 7 teaspoons of milo in a glass of milk, and we were sent to boarding school to be smartened up if we had 3 in one day…every day.

Sauvignon 2018, $48? We seldom get to taste older versions of wines alongside their current vintage, as Ms L. says, “you have to wait for delayed gratifcation”, and we can’t. But thanks to Tamburlaine’s generosity, we didn’t have to delay anything. Perhaps we will in future. Both are lovely but this is darker, softer

Then there’s the cost. A tin of toddler tincture (all are 900grams btw - hmm, cartelism?), costs about $40. You get a Tonka-tiptruck of Milo for that.

So many parents must be so tired if they are falling for this marketing espionage, it’s no wonder they reach for a glass of wine after the kids are in bed, it’s cheaper and better for you.

nais se que. 9.4/10.

Tamburlaine Organic Wines Orange Wine Region Reserve Syrah 2022, $48. Thank goodness for air-conditioning or we wouldn’t enjoy big reds on hot days, and what fun would that be? Perfect wine for streaming yet another cop show on a steaming night in summer.

WINE 38 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
Max Crus


5m prep



• oil spray

• 4 (English) muffns, halved and toasted

• 120g shaved leg ham


Step 1

4 servings

• 4 eggs

From simple meals to show-stopping feasts, there’s something for everyone.

• 4 slices tasty cheese

Spray a frying pan with oil. Heat over medium heat. Cook ham, turning, for 2 to 3 minutes or until light golden. Transfer to a plate. Cover to keep warm.

Step 2

Preheat grill on medium. Lightly spray pan with oil. Heat over medium heat. Cook eggs for 4 minutes or until cooked to your liking.

Step 3

Place 4 muffn halves on a baking tray lined with foil. Place 1 egg on each muffn. Top each with ham and 1 slice cheese. Grill for 1 minute or until cheese has melted. Top with remaining muffn halves. Serve.


20m prep 8m cook

4h 40m cook


4 servings


10m prep

10m cook

4 servings 297 calories

• 2 tsp olive oil

• 1 brown onion, fnely chopped

• 2 carrots, peeled, chopped

fresh sprigs thyme, 2 fresh sprigs rosemary)


• 2 celery sticks, trimmed, chopped

• 2 garlic cloves, crushed

• 1 tsp fennel seeds

• 200g cavalo nero (Tuscan cabbage), stem removed, leaves shredded

• 2 thick slices Italian bread (pane di casa), lightly toasted, torn into chunks

30m prep 4h 55m cook

• Pinch of dried chilli fakes


• 400g can crushed tomatoes

• 400g can Cannellini Beans, drained, rinsed

• 400g piece speck, rind removed, cut into 1cmthick batons

• 1L (4 cups) Massel vegetable liquid stock

4 servings 724 calories

• 40g (1/2cup) fnely grated parmesan, (or vegetarian hard cheese) plus extra shaved, to serve

• 1 lemon, juiced, zested

brown. Use tongs to transfer speck to a bowl. Add the beef to the pan and cook for 2 minutes each side or until browned. Add to the bowl.


• 1/4 cup (60ml) lime juice

• 1 1/2 tbsp brown sugar

• 1 tbsp fsh sauce

• 2 tsp lemongrass paste

• 1 tsp sesame oil

• 2 Chicken Breast Fillets, halved crossways

• 2 Lebanese cucumbers, peeled into ribbons

• 1 red capsicum, seeded, thinly sliced

• Bouquet garni (4 fresh or dried bay leaves, 4

• 4 (about 940g) beef cheeks, sinew removed

• Finely chopped continental parsley, to serve

• 1 tbsp olive oil


• 12 French shallots, peeled

• 2 large celery sticks, trimmed, fnely chopped

Step 1

• 2 anchovy fllets

• 60ml (1/4 cup) Red Wine Vinegar

• 2 tbsp tomato paste

• 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

Step 2

Set a 5L slow cooker to Browning. Heat oil. Cook onion, carrot and celery for 5 minutes or until tender. Add garlic, fennel and chilli. Cook for 1 minute. Add tomato, beans, stock and bouquet garni. Season. Change cooker setting to High. Cover. Cook for 3-4 hours or until vegetables are almost tender.

• 500ml (2 cups) beef liquid stock

• 125ml (1/2 cup) red wine

• 4 whole cloves

• 3 bay leaves

• 1 bunch baby carrots, trimmed, peeled

• 1 tbsp butter, at room temperature

• 1 tbsp plain four

• Chopped fresh continental parsley, to serve

• Finely grated lemon rind, to serve

• Creamy mashed potato, to serve


Stir in cavalo nero, bread and parmesan. Cover and cook on High for 30 minutes or until soup has thickened slightly. Stir in lemon juice, to taste. Serve topped with parsley, lemon zest and extra parmesan.

2. Heat the oil in the same pan over mediumhigh heat. Add the shallot, celery and anchovy a nd cook, tossing, for 2-3 minutes or until starting to soften. Add the vinegar and cook, scraping to dislodge any cooked-on bits from the base, for 2 minutes or until vinegar has reduced by half. Add tomato paste and nutmeg and cook, tossing, for 3 minutes. Return speck and beef to the dish. Add the stock, wine, cloves and bay leaves. Bring to a simmer. Transfer to a slow cooker and cook on HIGH for 4 hours (or low for 8 hours) or until beef is tender.

3. Cook the carrots in a saucepan of boiling water for 2-3 minutes or until just tender. Drain and set aside. Combine the butter and four in a bowl.

• 1 red onion, thinly sliced

• 200g Perino tomatoes, halved

• 1 cup coriander leaves

• 1/2 cup mint leaves

• 1/2 cup (70g) peanuts, toasted, coarsely chopped


1. Combine the lime juice, sugar, fsh sauce, lemongrass and oil in a small bowl. Place chicken in a glass or ceramic dish. Pour over 1 tablespoon of the lime juice mixture. Set aside for 10 mins to marinate.

“Good food is the foundation of genuine happiness.”

1. Cook the speck in a large saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 15-20 minutes or until the fat has rendered and the speck is starting to

4. Use tongs to transfer the meat to a serving dish. Use a slotted spoon to add speck and shallot to the dish. Cover with foil. Gradually whisk butter mixture into stock mixture until well combined. Cover and cook on HIGH for 20 minutes, whisking halfway, or until mixture comes to a simmers and thickens slightly. Stir in carrots.

5. Pour the stock mixture over the meat and shallot. Sprinkle with the parsley and lemon rind, and serve with creamy mashed potato.

2. Heat a barbecue grill or chargrill on mediumhigh. Cook the chicken for 3 mins each side or until cooked through. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside for 5 mins to rest.

3. Meanwhile, combine the cucumber, capsicum, onion, tomato, coriander and mint in a large bowl. Drizzle with the remaining lime juice mixture and toss to combine.

- Auguste Escoffer

4. Thinly slice chicken. Add to the salad and toss to combine. Divide among serving plates. Sprinkle with peanut.

COOKING 39 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent
51 September 14, 2023 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent COOKING

AGL and Cannon-Brookes Propose Solar Panel Plant at Former Coal Site

In a groundbreaking move, energy giant AGL has joined forces with a technology company supported by its major shareholder, billionaire Mike CannonBrookes, to explore the establishment of a cutting-edge solar panel manufacturing facility on the premises of the decommissioned Liddell coal-fired power station.

This collaboration between AGL and Sydney-based SunDrive signifies a significant shift towards renewable energy initiatives, following the closure of the Liddell generator in the NSW Upper Hunter region nearly a year ago.

The decision to cease operations at Liddell, which had reached the end of its operational life, underscores AGL’s commitment to transitioning its coalfired power station sites in Victoria and NSW into sustainable energy


Damien Nicks, CEO of AGL, emphasized that the partnership with SunDrive marks a pivotal moment in the company’s journey towards creating low-carbon energy hubs, emphasizing a holistic approach that integrates renewable energy

generation, large-scale battery storage, and green technology manufacturing. The proposed Hunter Energy Hub aims to adhere to circular economy principles and foster collaboration among industries committed to advancing the energy transition.

Cannon-Brookes, renowned for his environmental advocacy and investment in clean energy ventures, has been instrumental in driving AGL’s strategic shift towards sustainable energy solutions. Through his investment vehicle, Grok Ventures, Cannon-Brookes has

championed initiatives aimed at tackling climate change and seizing opportunities in the clean energy sector. SunDrive, a start-up with ground-breaking technology developed at the University of New South Wales, stands at the forefront of solar cell innovation.

Backed by prominent investors, including Blackbird Ventures and Main Sequence Ventures, SunDrive has pioneered solar cell technology that utilizes copper, a cost-effective and abundant alternative to silver. With the successful development of highly efficient solar cells, SunDrive envisions scaling up production at its first commercial-scale manufacturing plant within AGL’s Hunter Energy Hub.

Vince Allen, Founder and CEO of SunDrive, expressed enthusiasm about the collaboration with AGL, highlighting the opportunity to introduce Australianmade solar technology to the domestic market. As SunDrive aims to revolutionize rooftop solar installations with its cutting-edge technology, the partnership with AGL signifies a significant step towards advancing Australia’s renewable energy sector.

Servicing the smallest of all Australian businesses

In a bold move that rocked the insurance industry, Australia’s leading online business insurance platform, BizCover, has launched its newest service –BizCover for Kids.

BizCover for Kids specialises in providing tailored cover* for Australia’s youngest

entrepreneurs while being backed by 8 new key players, including Toycover, Play Protector and Kidsinsure. The new products aim to provide similar protection as the ones currently trusted by over 220,000 Australian small businesses.

However, BizCover for Kids has been cleverly

re-imagined for the playground. Starting today, ambitious young minds can protect their lemonade stands, block skyscrapers and other creations with multiple cover options previously reserved for grown-up businesses.

BizCover for Kids’ new comprehensive range of insurance policies, also known as shields for kids, include:

• Slips, Trips and Falls Shield –This cover protects kids when their lemonade recipe turns out too sour.

• Bad Advice Shield – For when tutoring ends up with the tutored thinking 2+2 = 5. That’s not good for any small business!

• Ouchie Shield

- Covers everything from scraped knees to a

splinter from a wooden sword.

• Stocks and Stuff Shield - For keeping your Fortress of Pillows safe, along with everything in it. BizCover believes that CEOs come in all sizes, and it’s about time their innovative spirits and playground hustle got the respect they deserve. Whether it’s safeguarding their slime-making business or protecting their sausage sizzle restaurant, BizCover for Kids offers peace of mind so mini business owners can focus on what really matters - conquering the world before naptime.

“At BizCover, we believe that kids’ businesses are big businesses, and our commitment is to find

ways to make their already busy lives easier, allowing them not only to be protected but to grow and thrive,” said Sharon Kenny, head of marketing at BizCover.

“And for every successful mini small business adventure, we are sure there will be very happy parents supporting their kids every step of the way”, added Kenny.

BizCover for Kids is now available (with parents’ permission, of course) to fight evil risks, and help young minds protect what they love while they grow their small businesses. Visit https:// bizcover-for-kids/today.

To learn more about the grown-up business insurance services

BizCover offers, visit the BizCover website.

BizCover is an online insurance service that takes the headache out of business insurance. Their easy-to-use platform allows small business owners to instantly quote, compare and secure insurance policies from leading Australian insurers. No muss, no fuss and absolutely no paperwork.

Trusted by over 220,000 small businesses, BizCover is all about ensuring business insurance remains affordable and drama-free. And while today is all about cracking jokes, BizCover’s commitment to protecting small businesses is no laughing matter.

BUSINESS NEWS 40 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
Liddell coal-fired power station.

Rising tide of unit rents closes gap with houses in major capitals

MCG Quantity

Surveyors is proud to announce the release of its landmark report,

‘Rising Tide of Unit Rents Closes Gap with Houses in Major Capitals,’ shedding light on trans-formative trends in Australia’s rental market over the past year. This in-depth analysis underscores a narrowing affordability gap between house and unit rents in Australia’s leading capital cities:

Greater Sydney, Greater Melbourne, and Greater Brisbane, highlighting signifcant implications for renters and investors alike.

“The fndings of our report refect a remarkable shift in the rental market dynamics, with unit rents experiencing a surge that is narrowing the

affordability gap with houses in 3 of our major capitals,” says Mike Mortlock, Managing Director of MCG Quantity Surveyors.

“This is indicative of a deeper change in the market, infuenced by evolving preferences and housing market conditions.”

In Greater Sydney, the data reveals a consistent rise in house rents from $650 in February 2023 to $700 by February 2024, while unit rents jumped from $540 to $650 over the same period. “The accelerated growth in unit rents compared to houses suggests a strong demand for more affordable, centrally located living options,” Mortlock notes, highlighting the potential drivers behind this trend.

Greater Melbourne and Greater Brisbane follow a similar pattern, with both cities witnessing

a signifcant increase in unit rents, closing the gap with house rents. Melbourne’s unit rents rose from $430 to $520, and Brisbane’s from $470 to $550, underscoring the appeal of urban living and the growing demand for units. “These trends are not just numbers; they tell the story of Australians’ shifting lifestyle aspirations, with a clear tilt towards higher density living options,” Mortlock elaborates.

This shift has implications for both renters, who now fnd the price difference between choosing a unit over a house diminishing, and investors, who are seeing units emerge as an attractive investment proposition. “For investors, the rising unit rents in innercity areas point to a potentially higher yield in the short to medium

term. However, this opportunity comes with considerations such as strata fees and the ongoing supply of new developments,” advises Mortlock.

MCG Quantity Surveyors’ report, ‘Rising Tide of Unit Rents Closes Gap with Houses in Major Capitals,’ serves as

an essential guide for stakeholders across the real estate spectrum. By providing a nuanced understanding of current market trends, the report facilitates informed decision-making for property investment, urban planning and housing policy. “For those navigating the complexities of the

Australian rental market, our report offers not just insights but a roadmap for understanding the evolving landscape of housing affordability,” concludes Mortlock. “It’s crucial for both renters and investors to stay informed about these trends as they shape the future of our cities.”

REAL ESTATE NEWS 41 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent 645 Franklins Road, Glenugie NSW I 404 Ha | 998.31* Acres Expressions of Interest Closing Wednesday 24th April, 11am Mike Cli on 0400 095 902 mike.cli * Approx. Enviable Northern Rivers Lifestyle with Income • Certi ed organic Blueberry & Garlic farm • Supply contracts in place • 16,000* blueberry bushes - 20,000* garlic bulbs • Watered by bore, dams 66ML irrigation licence • O grid solar power with battery storage • Quality improvements • 8 titles – subdivision potential STCA • Extensive list of plant and machinery included.
Michael Smith 0413 454 350 Kaeren Smith 0412 454 150 Thinking Real Estate. Think TCR
Turramurra Sydney NSW

Hyundai i30 Hatch Facelift 2025

Hyundai’s acclaimed small hatchback, the i30, is poised for a signifcant update in 2025, introducing refned styling, advanced technology, and a production shift.

Scheduled for arrival in Australian showrooms in the latter half of the year, this facelift marks the second overhaul since the model’s debut in 2017.

Amidst evolving market dynamics and a waning demand for small hatchbacks in Europe, the 2025 Hyundai i30 hatch undergoes a subtle yet impactful transformation aimed at prolonging its market relevance.

While retaining its distinctive appeal, the refreshed design features updated bumper inserts, wheels, and a broader colour palette, refecting

Hyundai’s commitment to contemporary aesthetics.

Incorporating the

Refreshed Design, Enhanced Tech, and Production Shift

in the market, is also set to receive its share of enhancements following the regular

latest advancements in automotive technology, the 2025 i30 hatch boasts a widescreen digital instrument cluster and introduces new safety features, enhancing both driver convenience and passenger protection. Moreover, top-tier

models showcase a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster, offering an immersive and intuitive interface for enhanced driving experience.

Anticipated to power the Australian models is a turbocharged 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol

engine, complemented by a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and 48-volt mild-hybrid technology. This powertrain confguration delivers an impressive 118kW of power and 253Nm of torque, ensuring optimal performance while prioritizing fuel effciency.

A signifcant aspect of the 2025 i30 hatch update is the transition in production, with manufacturing operations shifting from South Korea to the Czech Republic. This strategic move, while enhancing production effciency, introduces a 5% import tariff, contributing to an expected increase in prices for Australian consumers.

The updated i30 N hot hatch, which has been a standout performer

model’s release. Notably, production of the i30 hatch in South Korea has concluded, paving the way for the arrival of the updated model post-July.

While European variants feature distinctive styling cues and technological enhancements, including LED headlights and interior refnements, Australian models are expected to align closely with their European counterparts, offering an unparalleled driving experience.

In conclusion, the 2025 Hyundai i30 hatch facelift represents a harmonious blend of style, performance, and innovation, poised to captivate discerning motorists across Australia. With its refreshed design, advanced technology suite, and effcient

powertrain, the i30 remains a frontrunner in the competitive small hatchback segment, embodying Hyundai’s unwavering commitment to excellence and customer satisfaction.


1. Production

Shift: Highlighting the transition of production from South Korea to the Czech Republic, emphasizing the strategic implications and potential impacts on manufacturing effciency and pricing.

2. Advanced Technology Integration: Discussing the incorporation of cutting-edge features such as the widescreen digital instrument cluster and 48-volt mildhybrid technology, showcasing Hyundai’s commitment to innovation and enhancing the driving experience.

3. Market Relevance and Customer Reception: Exploring the signifcance of the facelift in maintaining the i30’s competitiveness in the small hatchback segment, while also considering consumer response and expectations regarding pricing changes and technological advancements.

MOTORING NEWS 42 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024

Genesis Unveils Magma

Genesis, the luxury subsidiary of Hyundai, has unveiled ambitious plans to establish its own performance sub-brand, setting its sights on competing with the likes of AMG, BMW M, and even Porsche. This strategic move marks Genesis’s foray into the high-performance segment, signalling its intent to challenge established players in the industry.

At the New York Motor Show, Genesis showcased four striking Magma concepts, signalling the brand’s commitment to developing a comprehensive range of performance-oriented models. These concepts encompass “go fast” variants of popular

models such as the GV80 Coupe SUV, G80 sedan, GV60 mid-size SUV, and the sleek two-door X Gran Berlinetta concept. With this diverse line-up, Genesis aims to imbue each production vehicle in its existing line-up with the high-performance DNA characteristic of the Magma brand.

To bolster its credibility in the performance arena, Genesis has enlisted the expertise of motor racing legend Jacky Ickx, a six-time Le Mans winner. Ickx’s involvement underscores Genesis’s commitment to leveraging motorsportinspired technology and engineering excellence in the development of its Magma models.

The frst concept slated for production is the GV60 Magma Concept,

A New Performance SubBrand to Take on AMG and BMW M

an electric mid-size SUV poised to revolutionize the performance EV segment. Drawing inspiration from the acclaimed Hyundai Ioniq

5 N, the GV60 Magma is expected to harness cutting-edge hardware to deliver an electrifying driving experience. While specifc details regarding the powertrain

remain undisclosed, Genesis promises ample power and exhilaration for drivers, mirroring the performance prowess of its combustion counterparts.

Visually, the GV60 Magma exudes athleticism and aggression, with a widened and lowered body enhancing its

Land Rover Teases Powerful Defender Octa

Land Rover is gearing up to unveil a formidable addition to its Defender line-up with the upcoming release of the Defender Octa.

Promising to be the epitome of ruggedness, capability, and luxury, this new fagship model is set to redefne expectations.

At the heart of the Defender Octa lies a potent mild-hybrid

twin-turbo V8 engine, yet to disclose its exact power output or the specifc V8 variant. However, the twin-turbo confguration hints at a similar powerplant to the 4.4-liter unit found in the Range Rover Sport SV. Surpassing the current 5.0-liter supercharged V8 Defender, which boasts 368kW and 610Nm, the Octa is poised to deliver even greater performance.

Accompanying this

powertrain is Land Rover’s innovative hydraulic suspension system, dubbed 6D Dynamics, aimed at elevating the Defender’s off-road prowess to new heights.

Unlike conventional anti-roll bars, the Octa employs air springs paired with hydraulically cross-linked dampers. This sophisticated setup ensures a stable stance during dynamic manoeuvres on-road

while optimizing wheel travel and articulation off-road, reminiscent of high-performance luxury SUVs like the Porsche Cayenne and Audi RS Q8.

In a nod to its diamond-inspired design philosophy, Land Rover introduces the Octa moniker, drawing inspiration from the octahedron shape of a diamond. This motif is further emphasized by a distinctive encircled diamond graphic adorning the vehicle, symbolizing strength, resilience, and desirability.

With its cutting-edge technology, formidable performance, and distinctive design cues, the Defender Octa is poised to make a resounding impact as the pinnacle of Land Rover’s iconic Defender line-up.

aerodynamic effciency and handling dynamics. Strategic enhancements such as larger front intakes and aerodynamic elements contribute to improved cooling and downforce, ensuring optimal performance on the road or track.

Inside the cabin, the GV60 Magma exudes sophistication and sportiness, with bucket seats adorned in premium materials such as nappa leather and suede. The incorporation of Magma’s signature orange colour accentuates the interior’s dynamic character,

creating a cohesive and immersive driving environment.

In essence, the Genesis Magma sub-brand represents a bold leap into the high-performance realm, signalling the brand’s ambition to redefne the boundaries of luxury and performance in the automotive landscape. With a focus on innovation, technology, and driving exhilaration, Genesis is poised to carve a distinct niche for itself among discerning enthusiasts and afcionados alike.

MOTORING NEWS 43 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent


Garden water features have been a focal point in outdoor spaces for centuries, embodying tranquillity, beauty, and the harmonious sound of nature. From ornate fountains in Renaissance Italy to the serene koi ponds of Japanese gardens, water features have transcended cultures, proving their timeless appeal. Today, incorporating a water feature into your garden is not just about adding a visual element; it’s about creating a sanctuary where nature and artistry meet.

The Allure of Water in the Garden Water features attract wildlife, provide a calming presence, and can even help to cool the surrounding area on hot days. The sound of water moving in a fountain or bubbling over rocks in a stream can soothe the mind, making your garden a perfect retreat from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Moreover, water features are versatile; they can be tailored to ft any space, style, or budget, from grandiose fountains to simple birdbaths.

Types of Garden Water Features

• Fountains: Fountains are among the most popular water features, known for their aesthetic appeal and the soothing sound of trickling water. They can be freestanding, wall-mounted, or even foating, suitable for

gardens of all sizes.

• Ponds: Ponds can serve as a peaceful focal point in a garden, offering a habitat for fsh and aquatic plants. Whether it’s a small, serene pond or a larger one with a waterfall, ponds bring a sense of calm and an opportunity for biodiversity.

• Waterfalls: Introducing movement and sound, waterfalls can be standalone features or part of a pond. They add a dynamic element to the garden, mimicking nature and inviting relaxation.

• Streams: Artifcial streams can wind through your garden,

providing the gentle sound of fowing water while connecting different elements of your outdoor space.

• Birdbaths: Simple yet effective, birdbaths attract birds to your garden, adding life and motion. They can be ornate or minimalist, depending on the garden’s design.



When planning a garden water feature, several factors must be considered to ensure it complements your outdoor space:

• Location: Choose a spot where the water feature will be visible and can be enjoyed

from multiple angles. Consider the sun’s path, as some plants and fsh require specifc light conditions.

• Size: The water feature should be proportional to the size of your garden. A large fountain might overwhelm a small space, while a tiny pond could look lost in a vast garden.

• Style: The water feature should match the style of your garden, whether it’s formal, rustic, modern, or naturalistic.

• Wildlife: If attracting wildlife is a goal, choose features and plants that provide habitats and food sources.

• Maintenance: Consider the level of upkeep required. Ponds and fountains need regular cleaning and water treatment to remain clear and functioning.

Benefts of Garden

Water Features

Beyond their beauty, garden water features offer environmental and psychological benefts:

• Stress Reduction: The sound of water is universally calming, helping to reduce stress and promote relaxation.

• Cooling Effect: Water features can cool the surrounding area, creating a more comfortable outdoor environment during

warmer months.

• Biodiversity: Water features attract a variety of wildlife, from birds to benefcial insects, enhancing the garden’s ecosystem.

• Increased Property

Value: Well-designed garden water features can increase the appeal and value of your property.

Installation and

Maintenance While some garden water features can be DIY projects, others might require professional installation, especially if electrical work is involved. Regular maintenance is crucial to keep the water clean and the system running smoothly. This includes cleaning pumps and flters, treating water to prevent algae growth, and winterising features in colder climates to prevent damage.

Get to it!

Garden water features can transform an ordinary outdoor space into a tranquil oasis, blending aesthetics with the soothing sounds of nature. Whether you opt for a simple birdbath or an elaborate pond with waterfalls, the addition of water brings a new dimension to garden design. With careful planning and consideration, you can create a water feature that enhances your garden, provides a habitat for wildlife, and offers a peaceful retreat for years to come.

GARDENING NEWS 44 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024


Passed away in the loving care of St Andrews Nursing Home Ballina.

Dearly loved wife of Alan Gordon Beckman (dec) for 60 years.

Cherished aunt of Grant & Anne Moehead.

Reunited with her Alan at Alstonville Cemetery

In accordance with Nea’s wishes a private cremation has taken place.

45 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times IN MEMORIAM
Death Notice NEA
09. 1933 ~ 18. 03. 2024
Ballina 02 6686 7036 Monumental Masons ELLEM MONUMENTAL CASINO GRANITE HEADSTONES NEW & RESTORATION Gloria m 0457 976 491 Scott m 0481 170 218 Brian m 0433 905 601 Phone 66 626 066 Ballina-Lismore-Casino -Sth Grafton 1800 809 336 Funeral Directors & Services Funeral Directors & Services Funeral Directors & Services Sacred Earth Funerals Funerals with Heart 1300 585 778 Bespoke - Personal - Professional Funeral Directors & Services LISMORE • BALLINA • RICHMOND VALLEY Locally Owned 55 Magellan Street, Lismore Warwick Binney Ph 02 6622 2420 LISMORE • BALLINA • RICHMOND VALLEY Locally Owned and Operated 55 Magellan Street, Lismore Warwick Binney Ph 02 6622 2420 LISMORE • BALLINA • RICHMOND VALLEY Locally Owned and Operated 55 Magellan Street, Lismore Warwick Binney Ph 02 6622 2420 LISMORE • BALLINA • RICHMOND VALLEY Locally Owned and Operated 55 Magellan Street, Lismore Warwick Binney Ph 02 6622 2420 McGuiness Funerals “A Tradition of Care” Murwillumbah 02 6672 2144 Billinudgel 02 6680 3084 Funeral Directors & Services Monumental Masons MONUMENTAL MASONRY Frank McKey Locally & Australian owned Frank: 02 6662 4381 / 0429 611 416 This page is dedicated to all those that have passed
PUBLIC NOTICE, FOR SALE & RURAL 46 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024 Personal Sasha’s on Cook Street Supporting your local community Escort Services available in the Northern Rivers. Ladies and Couples welcome! Check out our website Payments accepted - Credit card, bank transfer, over the phone payment and CASH! Open 7 days 10am till late Monday-Tuesday: 10am-6pm Call us on (02) 6622 5533 20 Cook Street South Lismore. Email: 18+ Massage UNDER NEW MANAGEMENT Maple Bell Massage Therapeutic Massage Males – Females All welcome Shop 1 - 94 Main St, Alstonville Open 7 Days - 9am to 8pm - 0452 196 722 Ag Supplies for Sale Hay for Sale Personal UNWANTED ITEMS? SELL THEM HERE IN THE NORTHER RIVERS TIMES CLASSIFIEDS CALL SHARON OR JULIE ON 02 6662 6222 ARE YOU HAVING A CATTLE, LIVESTOCK, CLEARING OR GENERAL RURAL SALE? WE CAN HELP YOU GET THE WORD OUT! Advertising with us in the Northern Rivers Times gives you a great reach to get word of your sale out to the public. Contact Julie or Sharon on 02 6662 6222 Licensed Auctioneers, Stock & Station & Real Estate Agents CASINO BANGALOW MURWILLUMBAH WARWICK STANTHORPE Darren Perkins David O'Reilly Jasen Somerville Riley Wellman 0428 660 324 0428 299 743 0429 660 657 0499 222 514 Further Bookings Invited Special Lines: A/c P Ducat - Capeen 50 Hereford Cows PTIC 5-8 years old A/c Mara Seeds Pty Ltd - EU Acc’ Mallanganee 150 Hereford & Angus F1 X Weaners Mixed Sex Friday, 12th April 2024 10:00AM AEST 600 HEAD CASINO SPECIAL STORE SALE 600 HEAD Clearing Sale Livestock & Cattle Sale Ramsey & Bulmer Casino 02 6662 6662 Allen Ramsey 0428 664 927 Wayne Bulmer 0428 661 167 Steve Davis 0429 623 066 Alex Sullivan 0490 058 091 Peter 0427 042 713 • Matthew 0427 737 938 Mark 0411 491 437 • Jack 0498 400 176 Licensed Stock & Station Agents T&W McCormack Casino 02 6662 1577 FINAL REMINDER LIVEWEIGHT & BREEDER STORE SALE NRLX – CASINO PRELIMINARY NOTICE LIVEWEIGHT & OPEN AUCTION STORE SALE NRLX – CASINO FRIDAY 5TH APRIL 2024 Commencing 10.00am FRIDAY 26TH APRIL 2024 Commencing 10.00am Livestock & Cattle Sale Trades and Services Need Advertising? Call 1300 679 787
47 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent TRADES & SERVICES Northern Rivers Brick & Blocklaying 30 years experience Licence no 178334C Houses, Retaining Walls, Fences, Renovations 0478 103 617 Quality Work Bricklayer Architecture/Drafting Builder Casino, Kyogle, Lismore and Goonellabah 0466 029 862 Kathy’s Kleaning SERVICE NORTHERN RIVERS Casino, Kyogle, Lismore and Goonellabah 0466 029 862 Kathy’s Kleaning SERVICE NORTHERN RIVERS Casino, Kyogle, Lismore and Goonellabah 0466 029 862 Kathy’s Kleaning SERVICE NORTHERN RIVERS Casino, Kyogle, Lismore and Goonellabah 0466 029 862 Kathy’s Kleaning SERVICE NORTHERN RIVERS Cleaning Services Cabinet Maker Specialising in Kitchens & Timber windows & Doors P h o n e 0 2 6 6 8 4 1 0 6 6 B u l d e r s L c e n c e 3 2 7 6 0 8 C W i t h o v e r 4 0 y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e i n t h e I n d u s t r y , L a m b r u k i s y o u r f i r s t c h o i c e f o r J o i n e r y & C a b i n e t M a k i n g i n t h e N o r t h e r n R i v e r s Concrete Products THE TRUSTED NAME FOR CONCRETE PRODUCTS 4-8 Craig Street, Kyogle. 6632 2978 • Septic Tanks • Aerated Wastewater Treatment System • Reed Beds • Water Troughs • Cattle Grids Handyman Services Builder Builder Engineering *Price Match Guarantee Found a beter price on your LPG? We’ll beat it.* Give us a ring on 0400 716 228 or email today! (02) 6628 8460 *New 45kg botle exchange customers only. Price match on LPG price for 12 months from ofer redempton. Annual equipment fees and T’s and C’s apply.* Northern Rivers Gas Distributon: Your Gas Suppliers in Northern Rivers Gas Supplier Concreting Handyman Services Ph: 0407 837 547 Dial A Dad Property Services Licenced & insured • Lic 73852C • Gutter Cleaning • Rubbish Removal • Electrical Work • Window Cleaning • Mowing/ Yardwork ABN 68 783 520 626 Pressure Cleaning Lawn Mowing & Gardening MOWING GARDENING PHONE NOEL 0439 607 795 10 YEARS TRADING Servicing: LISMORE GOONELLABAH WOLLONGBAR ALSTONVILLE BALLINA areas Stump Grinding In Northern Rivers No Stump Is Too Big Or Too Small STUMP REMOVALS TREE REMOVALS LAND CLEARING GARDEN MAKEOVERS Landscaping Motor Repairs Repairers licence No: MVTC157416 Mobile Panel, Paint & Bumper Repairs FREE QUOTES Ph: Cory 0403 918 831 • Scratch & Dent Repairs • Bumper Repairs • Rust Repairs • Pre Sales Tidy Ups • Car Park Dents • Accident Damage 0403 918 831 Mobile Panel, Paint & Bumper Repairs Bumper to Bumper Repairs Mobile Panel, Paint & Bumper Repairs FREE QUOTES 6986066aa | Repairers licence No: MVTC157416 Phone Cory 0403 918 831 We come to you Family owned and operated Fully qualifed, fully insured and all work is guaranteed • Scratch & Dent Repairs • Bumper Repairs • Rust Repairs • Pre Sales Tidy Ups • Car Park Dents • Accident Damage We come to you Family owned and operated Fully qualifed, fully insured and all work is guaranteed Servicing the Ballina Shire up to Tweed Heads CRAIGS FLOAT HIRE Float Hire Mobile Mechanic we come to you Engineering OUR TRADES AND SERVICES ADVERTISEMENTS GET RESULTS CALL US ON 02 6662 6222

TRADES, SERVICES & COMMUNITY NOTICES 48 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024 COMMUNITY NOTICES must be emailed to community@ heartlandmedia. before 3pm Fridays Phone numbers only, no email addresses. Get the word out about your Club, Membership, Events, etc Tree Services PH: 0408 620 829 or 6662 2025 CASINO/KYOGLE BONALBO CORAKI WOODBURN EVANS HEAD OUR EQUIPMENT IS IDEAL FOR SITES WITH LIMITED ACCESS Dingo mini digger & stump grinder goes anywhere • Tree & Palms Removed • 17m Cherry Picker Larger Chipper Stump Grinder • Qualified Arborist • Tree Detailing • Climbers • Rubbish Removed FULLY INSURED TREE SERVICES Tree Services Low rates, friendly service Email: The Channon covering all areas of the North Coast P 6688 6136 M 0427 886 136 EXPERIENCED, FULLY INSURED, ALL SIZE JOBS For a free quote & advice Lopping Wood Chipping Felling Stump Grinding Removal • Lopping • Felling • Removal • Wood Chipping • Cherry Picker • Stump Grinding Low rates, friendly service Email: The Channon covering all areas of the North Coast P 6688 6136 M 0427 886 136 EXPERIENCED, FULLY INSURED, ALL SIZE JOBS For a free quote & advice Lopping Wood Chipping Felling Stump Grinding Removal Low rates, friendly service Email: The Channon covering all areas of the North Coast P 6688 6136 M 0427 886 136 EXPERIENCED, FULLY INSURED, ALL SIZE JOBS For a free quote & advice Lopping Wood Chipping Felling Stump Grinding Removal For a free quote and advice contact NOEL Pets 46 Terania Street, Lismore 6621 9998 Janet Goodwin (Proprietor) 0402 443 988 Drop o and pick up available Pest Control 02 6681 6555 PHONE YOUR PEST & TERMITE SPECIALISTS J.R PLASTERING SERVICES 0412 252 726 Plastering Call: 02 6662 6663 Your Removalist & Relocation Professionals Removalists Roofng Services Rooftech Roofing Services For Everything Roofing Phone office on 66811793 2/32 Southern Cross Drive, Ballina Lic 303299C and 301815C INSURANCE - COMMERCIAL STRATA - RESIDENTIAL
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49 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent COMMUNITY NOTICES
50 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024 COMMUNITY NOTICES
51 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent COMMUNITY NOTICES



Northern Rivers District:

Partly cloudy. High chance of showers, most likely in the afternoon and evening. The chance of a storm. Light winds.

Thursday. Cloudy. Very high chance of showers. The chance of a storm. Light winds becoming south to southeasterly 15 to 25 km/h during the morning.

Northern Tablelands District:

Partly cloudy. High chance of showers, most likely in the afternoon and evening. The chance of a storm. Winds west to northwesterly 15 to 20 km/h becoming light during the morning then becoming northeast to southeasterly 15 to 20 km/h during the evening.

Thursday. Cloudy. Very high chance of showers. The chance of a storm. Winds east to southeasterly 15 to 25 km/h.

New South Wales:

Showers and isolated storms in the northeast, with a few showers in the central and southern coastal districts. Partly cloudy. Daytime temperatures near average east of the divide, tending below average in the west. Southeast to southwesterly winds, fresh along parts of the coast.

Thursday. Showers about the east and northern slopes. The chance of storms about the northern slopes and coast, with moderate to possibly heavy falls. Mostly fine in the west. Daytime temperatures near to below average. South to southeasterly winds, fresh along the northern coast.

Byron Coast:

Winds: North to northwesterly 15 to 20 knots shifting south to southeasterly 10 to 15 knots during the day. Seas: 1 to 2 metres, decreasing to 1 metre during the morning. Swell: Southerly below 1 metre. Weather: 80% chance of showers. The chance of a storm.

Coffs Coast:

Winds: Northerly 15 to 25 knots shifting southerly 10 to 15 knots during the morning. Seas: 1 to 2 metres, decreasing to 1 metre during the morning. Swell: Southerly below 1 metre. Weather: Partly cloudy. 70% chance of showers. The chance of a storm.

Gold Coast Waters:

Winds: Northerly 10 to 15 knots tending northwesterly during the morning then turning north to northeasterly below 10 knots during the day. Seas: Around 1 metre. Swell: Southerly below 1 metre. Weather: Mostly sunny. 50% chance of showers. The chance of a storm in the afternoon and evening.


1024 1024 1008 016 1016 1031 TODAY 10AM 1024 1024 1016 1016 1031 1029 TOMORROW 10AM 1024 016 1016 1033 1031 FRIDAY 10AM FORECAST cold front warm front 1024 hectoPascal (hPa) trough Forecast Rain 24 hrs to 9am Warnings: Latest info at Warnings 1300 659 210 State Service 1300 934 034 Coastal Waters 1300 978 023 BYRON BAY UV ALERT 9:30am - 4:00pm MAX UV Index 8 (very high) TIDES, SUN & MOON Ballina Issued April 1, 2024 for April 3, 2024 Sunny Mostly sunny Partly cloudy Cloudy Chance shower Shower or two Showers Light rain (drizzle) Rain Storm Showers storm Windy Dust Fog 1.5m WEATHER Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun Mon 2.0 1.8 1.6 1.4 1.2 1.0 0.8 0.6 0.4 0.2 0.0 High:4:12am1.5m Low:11:16am0.6m High:4:57pm1.0m Low:10:12pm0.6m High:5:25am1.6m Low:12:17pm0.5m High:6:07pm1.1m Low:11:32pm0.6m High:6:26am1.7m Low:1:05pm0.4m High:7:03pm1.3m Low:12:38am0.5m High:7:18am1.8m Low:1:47pm0.3m High:7:52pm1.4m Low:1:35am0.4m High:7:06am1.8m Low:1:26pm0.2m High:7:38pm1.6m Low:1:29am0.3m High:7:51am1.8m Low:2:03pm0.2m High:8:22pm1.7m RiseSet
31 BROOME 38
RiseSet Sun6:58am6:40pm Moon1:26am3:46pm RiseSet Sun6:58am6:39pm Moon2:35am4:27pm RiseSet Sun6:59am6:38pm Moon3:45am5:04pm RiseSet Sun6:00am5:36pm Moon3:54am4:39pm RiseSet Sun6:00am5:35pm Moon5:02am5:13pm Kyogle Mullumbimby Kingcliff Wed 20 30 Thu 20 26 Fri 19 26 Sat 19 27 Sun 18 27 Murwillambah Wed 21 27 Thu 20 25 Fri 19 25 Sat 20 25 Sun 20 25 Byron Bay Wed 21 30 Thu 20 27 Fri 19 26 Sat 19 27 Sun 19 27 Tweed Heads Wed 19 29 Thu 19 25 Fri 18 25 Sat 18 26 Sun 17 26 Ballina Wed 20 28 Thu 19 24 Fri 19 26 Sat 19 27 Sun 18 27 Evans Head Wed 21 27 Thu 20 24 Fri 20 25 Sat 20 26 Sun 18 25 Yamba Wed 19 28 Thu 19 24 Fri 18 24 Sat 17 28 Sun 16 28 Grafton Wed 15 24 Thu 15 19 Fri 13 19 Sat 13 22 Sun 11 23 Tenterfield Wed 18 29 Thu 17 23 Fri 17 25 Sat 16 26 Sun 15 26 Lismore

During Local Footy Week, an annual celebration of AFL clubs’ ties to grassroots football, every player from the GIANTS and Swans’ AFL squads will be dispersed throughout Sydney to engage with junior players from the AFL Sydney Juniors competition at 19 different events. Young athletes from various clubs such as the Blue Mountains Kangaroos, Manly Wolves, HornsbyBerowra Eagles, and Camden Cats will have

the chance to meet their sporting heroes. With less than two weeks remaining before the start of their season, junior players are encouraged to invite friends to their club’s session with elite players. The AFL Sydney Juniors competition is set to kick off on Sunday, 7th April, and individuals can locate their nearest club on These visits hold special signifcance as both the GIANTS and Sydney Swans are

currently leading the AFL ladder, having won all three of their matches in the 2024 Toyota AFL Premiership season. The GIANTS will have a bye in the upcoming third round of the AFL, while the Swans are scheduled to face Richmond on Saturday.

Tiffany Robertson, Head of AFL NSW/ACT, expressed her excitement for the upcoming visits, stating: “Wednesday’s visits by elite players to local footy clubs provide valuable opportunities

for our young footballers. Interacting with elite athletes is a rare experience, and I hope registered junior players and their friends take advantage of this chance to create lasting memories alongside their AFL role models.” Leon Cameron, the Sydney Swans’ Executive General Manager of Football, emphasized the players’ commitment to giving back to the community and their eagerness to meet young fans and players at

schools and clubs across Sydney on Wednesday. He highlighted the presence of twelve players from NSW on the Swans’ roster, noting the signifcance of returning to their roots and inspiring the next generation of Swans’ fans.

David Matthews, CEO of the GIANTS, expressed the team’s enthusiasm for visiting local clubs and witnessing the excitement as players interact with their idols.

He emphasized the lasting impact of such interactions on young fans, noting that many players themselves had memorable encounters with AFL stars during their junior football days. Matthews underscored the GIANTS’ dedication to engaging with the next generation and fostering the growth of Australian Rules football throughout New South Wales and beyond.





D.Scott J. Bate 17 d

A.Mangan R.Chapman 13 R.Poynting R.Allen 13 d P.Bolte J.Hannigan 12

M.Russell N.Poynting 12 d B.Wellings N.Watts


D.Jones M.Field 10 d

R.Offey P.Scott 9

C.Edlund 12 d

B.Wellings 12

R.Offey J.Hannigan 8 d

C.Woodlands R.Allen 5 N.Watts P.Scott 8 d

B.Waters N.Poynting 8 R.Poynting D.Scott 19 d P.Waters R.Chapman 5

R.Poynting J.Doust 12 d

P.Scott N.Barnes 11

R.Offey B.Wellings 15 d B.Bill 13

J.Hannigan R Chapman 15 d N.Poynting D.Scott 13

J.Bate N.Watts 15 d

R.Allen M.Russell 10

C.Edlund 14 d

A.Mangan 14


Club Div 3 Singles

Championships Final J.Bate 7 d A.Mangan 3. Semi fnals.

J.Bate 7 d M.Rennie 3

A.Mangan 7 d

F.Frederiksen 2

Knockout games.

W.Gilmore 7 d

J.Dorward 5

N.Alfonso 7 d D.Jones 5

F. Frederiksen 7 d

R.Offey 4

M.Rennie 7 d C.Edlund 5

J.Bate 7 d W.Gilmore 6

M.Rennie 7 d D.Casey 5 A.Mangan 7 N.Alfonso



Parkes Master Croquet Games Doubles.

Jan Allen & John Mills 3rd Block A



THURSDAY 28/3/24

Wet weather keep the feld size down winner P Martin 2nd S Smith, 3rd D Bullock, free game J Sauer chicken/ ball winners T Doyle, G Flaherty, G Tait, S Toms, G Binks, T Foster. Nearest pins 3rd/12th G Binks, 6th/15th S Dawsonay will be the monthly medal for April commencing at 8.00am this will be the last 8.00am hit off for this

daylight saving time. AS USUAL TILL THEN GOOD GOLFING



Ladies Social Day27-03-24 - WinnersLowest Margin

-J.Beckett, A. Eyles, G. Marczan, P. Freeman. Triples Championship Round 1 commences 03-04-24.

SPORTS NEWS 53 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent

Northern Rivers local Leanne Whitehouse joined more than 120 surfers from 16 countries competing in the frst Australian Pro Adaptive Surfng Championship in Byron Bay this week.

The adaptive pro event has nine divisions, including adapted categories for amputation, visual impairment, and neurological impairment affecting limbs.

Among the competitors are surfers from the US, Canada, Brazil, France and Japan.

Leanne has long been an ardent surfer. She dreamed of going professional and competing on the world circuit, but when she was 21 she suffered a traumatic injury in a car accident.

“I was a sleeping passenger,” she explains.

“I didn’t know I was in an accident. I had multiple injuries including a perforated bowel. That was the

major injury they wanted to fx.”

Leanne also suffered a traumatic injury to the right side of her brain, paralysing the left side of her body.

But Leanne was determined to return to the sea and surf.

Leanne now accesses the NDIS through Social Futures, a not-for-proft and NDIS Partner in the Community.

Through the NDIS, she sees an exercise physiologist who has helped her develop strength to ‘pop up’ or stand on a surfboard, a challenge for Leanne due to her disability.

“Before the NDIS I was catching maybe 30 waves in a whole year. I think in the frst year of having NDIS support I caught 2,000 because I had support to go out into the ocean. It has supported me to reach my dreams,” Leanne says.

Leanne is a passionate advocate for surfng

as a means of building resilience while living with brain injury.

This week her goal is to compete in an international surf competition by qualifying for the Australian Pro Adaptive Surfng Championship as a person with an acquired brain injury.

“I’m a pioneer for people with Acquired Brain Injury (ABI),” Leanne says.

“To be able to compete in an international surf competition in my own backyard...I feel absolutely honoured, gobsmacked,


The Adaptive Surfng Professionals World Championships began in 2021 and include four events: the Hawaii Adaptive Surfng Championships, the Costa Rica Open Pro of Adaptive Surfng, the U.S. Open Adaptive Surfng Championships in Oceanside California, and for the frst time this year, the Australian Pro Adaptive Surfng Championship in Byron Bay.

Leanne surfs adaptively, wearing a helmet and glasses to protect against impacts

and to assist with vision and vertigo. Outside of competition she always has a surf support person with her to help her navigate vertigo and special awareness.

“I was approved for NDIS funding on my 30th brain injury anniversary and the difference the NDIS has made to me... it gives me an ordinary life. I can do things like anybody else can do now, with help,” Leanne says.

The NDIS also funds support workers for Leanne.

“Managing my neuro fatigue is a major thing. I can sleep between nine and 18 hours in a 24-hour day, so having someone to support me is huge,” she says.

“For example, the crew at the surf comp went out for dinner last night and without a support worker to take me, I wouldn’t have been able to go. Because when the lights go out, they go out really quick.”

On Monday Leanne, who was invited to the competition as an unclassifed invitational adaptive surfer, competed in the ‘standup 2 unassisted below knee’ category.

When she’s not carving waves Leanne dedicates her time to her notfor-proft organisation, Ability ID.

Ability ID provides free identifcation cards for people with hidden disabilities, including brain injury, stroke, dementia, and autism.

“The ID cards are designed to help when people with disability fnd themselves in emergency situations or situations when they can’t speak,” she said.

Leanne’s advice for others living with disability is to dream big, and to keep at it.

“Never give up. That is my adage on everything. Never give up. And ask for help. Put your ego in your back pocket and ask for help,” Leanne says.

SPORTS NEWS 54 The Northern Rivers Times April 4, 2024
Leanne Whitehouse image by Hannah Jessup

The inaugural Bruce Maxwell Classic at Castrol Lismore Speedway March 30 and 31 in honour of a man who was a vital part of the local racing scene for many years, has attracted an impressive entry list across all divisions.

It typifes, the high regard and respect this affable character with the gravel voice, matched with a heart of gold courtesy of his Variety Club of Australia charity work, was held in by so many. Bruce, 79, passed away in his Thailand home land on November 18 after he sustained injuries as the innocent party in a road accident.

For many years he sat beside long serving Lismore venue commentator Neil Marks calling the action after his racing years fnished. A former Sydney sedan competitor and headliner at Sydney’s Liverpool City Raceway after Bruce started his career during the 1969-70 season, he is also remembered for his later seasons racing V8 Dirt Modifeds. It’s therefore ftting a very impressive V8 Dirt Modifed entry list will race for honours in the Bruce Maxwell

Classic, culminating with a 40-lap main event, March 31.

All the heavy hitters at national level, headed by Mark Robinson, Andrew Pezzutti, Kevin Britten, David Clark and including Phil McNamara, Trent Scofeld, Scott Quirk, Brayd Stephenson, Sam Bruggy, Seiton Connor-Young, to name but a few from the cast of the fast are, among the 29 entries received by race organisers. Also included in the V8 Dirt Modifed nominations is another representative from the Herne family, namely Josh Herne, cousin of Nathan. Josh, who will make his debut in the V8 Dirt Modifed class, previously raced Modlites and is also an accomplished Go-Kart racer. In 2023 he was awarded Sportsman of the Year in Lismore.

Victoria will be well represented by a driver who is one of the best in the business Steven Milthorpe.

A regular traveller to all the major east coast V8 Dirt Modifed shows, Steven was one of the frst entries received. Drivers from three states – New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria – have nominated.

Castrol Lismore

Speedway promoters

Kim and Mick Sauer have put a lot of planning into this very special Easter meeting and are delighted with the response.

“Every year from now on we want to honour Bruce Maxwell at this track because of his magnifcent contribution not only to this venue, but also the sport,” Kim Sauer said.

“We understand there will be people coming from near and far to be a part of what will be two very special nights of racing for the man nicknamed Rocky. He was a larger than life identity whose work for the Variety Club of Australia was also legendary.”

The V8 Dirt Modifeds will be supported with racing for RSA Stockers (Saturday only), RSA Sedans (Sunday only), Production Sedans, Junior Sedans and AMCA Nationals (Sunday only).

There’s no doubt the passing of Bruce Maxwell has left a void in the sport that will never been flled.

For so many years he was such a devoted worker travelling on the Variety Club of Australia “Bash” circuit around

Australia raising money for children.

Bruce was that kind of bloke.

Through this involvement, he was a man of the people and became friends with entertainers, namely John Paul Young and “Angry” Anderson, among others.

This was the popularity and magnetism Bruce Maxwell possessed.

He was a dedicated husband and father.

From a personal note, I got to know Bruce in 1971 and a strong bond of friendship followed. He was also a journalist’s dream when it came to getting that vital quote for a news story. More than a colourful, charismatic character, there was also something inside Bruce that made

him a such very special person.

While it’s an old cliché, it’s so accurate in the description of this wonderful man who was the typical likeable

rogue, larrikin, prangster, but more importantly all round good bloke, they threw away the mould when they made Bruce Maxwell. He was one of a kind!

SPORTS NEWS 55 April 4, 2024 The Northern Rivers Times Locally owned and independent
Bruce Maxwell - Liverpool sedans Bruce Maxwell - Liverpool sedans
9 772652 792008 ISSN 2652-7928 Edition 195 $2.00 SPORTS NORTHERN RIVERS The Tyalgum Hotel offers refurbished Accommodation, Bistro, Sports bar, Swimming Pool, Snug room and Bottleshop Tyalgum Hotel, Coolman St, Tyalgum, NSW 2484 - 02 6679 3994 - - TYALGUM HOTEL - SINCE 1926 WHATS ON THIS MONTH AT THE TYALGUM HOTEL SMOKER BBQ EVERY SUNDAY Delicious Ribs, Kransky and slow cooked meats LIVE MUSIC Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday FREE MOVIE NIGHT Scheduled for 13 April SURFS UP FOR LEANNE

Articles inside


pages 44-48, 52-55

Genesis Unveils Magma

page 43

Hyundai i30 Hatch Facelift 2025

page 42

Rising tide of unit rents closes gap with houses in major capitals

page 41

Servicing the smallest of all Australian businesses

page 40

AGL and Cannon-Brookes Propose Solar Panel Plant at Former Coal Site

page 40


page 39


page 39

The land of milk and money.

page 38

Discover Australia’s Best Mature-Age Travel Spots

pages 37-38

Primary care access vital for better health outcomes in remote Australia

pages 33-36


page 32


page 32


pages 25-27

Statement on live cattle class action delay

pages 24-25

Farmers welcome revised New Vehicle Effciency Standard, but remain alert on impacts

page 24

Ensuring Fairness: Why Bunnings’ Role in the Supermarket Debate Matters

page 24

Coalition, Greens and independents unite to back farmers

page 23

Complete sugarcane genome sequence opens up new era in breeding

page 23

Resilient Lismore receives full ‘Repair to Return’ funding

pages 19-22

Green Bin Guidelines Overhauled for Healthier Soil and Clearer Recycling: Tweed Implements New Regulations

page 18

Janelle Saffn MP

page 17


page 17

Lismore Secures Historic Funding Agreement for $860 Million Roads and Bridges Rebuild

page 16

Kevin Hogan MP

page 16

What does the current federal government solar discount mean for you?

page 15

Building brighter beginnings for Tenterfeld pre-schoolers

page 14


pages 13-14

Tweed Shire Council’s Affordable Housing Strategy

page 12

Bindaree Food Group Industry Dinner Elevates Casino Beef Week 2024

pages 9-12

Diary of a Flood Survivor

pages 8-9

Ballina Hospital Auxiliary

page 8

Totem poles tell the history of the area

page 7

Council backs Save Ulmarra Ferry petition

page 6

Yamba eyesore still standing

page 6

Digital divide reduced with laptop giveaway

pages 4-6

Yamba chants makes ACA

page 4

Consultant probes council bullying claims

pages 2-4
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