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UNITED WE STAND A sea of hands planting ceremony was held in Penrith last week to honour National Apology Day. Story by Kerrie Martin on page 7 Photo: Greg Davies

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3 Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

State of the art By Kerrie Martin

IF you’re a busy person running a business like me, you can probably relate to having to drop everything at a minute to four o’clock to race up to the bank before it shuts. And it’s not just business people who understand banking pain, with many general customers rushing into the bank on a Friday afternoon to deposit money only to find the queue is a mile long and out the door. Those woes can be a thing of the past if you’re a Commonwealth Bank customer their St Marys branch has just opened in a new location with state-of-the-art technology that is a first in Australian CBA branches. St Marys branch Manager, Tonia AllisonAramini is excited about being able to offer customers a better banking environment. “Our newly relocated St Marys branch is designed to offer customers increased convenience, choice and access to all their banking needs,” Tonia said. The self-banking area enables customers to do almost all their banking, including depositing cheques and cashing notes for coins or vise versa, whether the branch is open or not. If customers miss closing time, they can use the new technology even after the main doors are closed - and, transactions occur in real time - so

they don’t have to wait until the next banking day. Furthermore, customer security has been at the forefront in developing the technology, so customers can rest assured - the self-serve area is fitted with round the clock CCTV cameras and anti-skimming devises. CBA’s banking around the clock is sure to appeal to local businesses, ensuring that their open-hours time can be channeled into doing what they do best - developing their business. If you’re not already a Commonwealth Bank customer, enquire today about joining - call 9120 2601 or visit the brand new branch at 106 Queen St, St Marys.

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From the Editor’s Desk

4 Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

203 BANKS DRIVE, ST CLAIR OFFICE: (02) 9834 5579 Editor: Sales Manager: Advertising Representative: Journalist: Journalist: Photographer: Graphic Design: Printer: Letters to the Editor: Web:

Kerrie Martin 0422 067 644 Korena Hale 0403 045 880 Raylene Vidler 0478 151 648 Annette Thain 0425 073 331 Greg “Harpo” Martin 0420 655 524 Kieren Tilly 0406 533 569 Stacey Fortescue 0420 319 893 Pegasus Print Group, Blacktown

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by Kerrie Martin I KNOW you’re probably sick of hearing about her, but this week I’m going to write about Schapelle. I confess that I am in what seems a minority group these days - in that I’m far from convinced of her guilt. I’ve been to Bali five or six times, I’ve seen corruption first hand and I don’t buy the line that “quality weed” is worth bulk dollars on the streets of Kuta - not when you could buy “standard weed” for a buck or two from hawkers all over the joint if that’s your fancy. I think it’s dodgy that the bag containing the drugs wasn’t dusted for finger prints - at least if hers were on that bag there’d be no other explanation. But that was never done. I don’t believe she received a fair trial - not in Indonesia and certainly not in the Court of Public Opinion. When I hark back to my childhood and Lindy Chamberlain, its like history repeating itself - everyone was an “expert” or had some inside knowledge of guilt. If I hear one more person say “I know someone who knows someone who knew the family” I think I’ll go nuts. So your cousin’s friend’s ex boyfriend saw her puff on a joint once at a party - c’mon, if that’s the criteria for being a drug smuggler then there must be a lot of guilty peeps walking around. I don’t expect anyone to agree with me, and I appreciate many believe she’s guilty by weighing things up as they see it. But what I don’t understand is why we are such haters? You know, we fun-loving, happy-go-lucky Aussies who give everyone a fair go. Why do we have such a dark side that hates beyond reason? Social media shows a swag of folks who don’t just have an opinion of guilt, they’re spraying absolute hated. If she is guilty, she’s done her time. Let’s leave her be. And don’t hate me for believing in her innocence! Just. Stop. Hating. Your thoughts?

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By Dr. Claire Petterson

RECENTLY at WellPet Vets we met Daxy, a 14 week old male Cockalier. Daxy had been straining to urinate and seemed to be in pain. Urinary problems are quite common in both dogs and cats. They can be caused by many different things including urinary tract infections, bladder stones, kidney disease, hormonal problems and congenital

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Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118


Sustainable living ENVIRONMENT Minister Robyn Parker and Member for Mulgoa Tanya Davies have announced Colyton High School Trade School will receive $3,500 to educate students and staff about living within a healthy ecological school environment. Ms Davies said there will be a major emphasis on reducing, reusing and recycling as well as cultivating a food garden, compost and worm farm that will teach students and staff about sustainable  Colyton Trade School Principal, Cheryl Dwyer (left) with Minister Parker, Tanya Davies MP and students who care for the garden pictured. healthy living. “The funding will help the school with students’ environmental education, and the wider community to consider their improve student welfare and health by showing environment and empower them to help protect students healthy eating alternatives and improve it.” The overall objective of the Eco Schools dietary habits,” Ms Davies said. Ms Parker said this was just one of 52 grants program is to support schools to develop recently announced in addition to the 80 grants best practice in environmental education and innovative solutions to environmental issues. announced last November. The Food Gardens in Schools Program “The combined total of 2013 Eco Schools and Food Gardens in Schools grants is $382,000, and provides learning opportunities for students, this will have an enormous impact for students teachers and other members of the school community about healthy sustainable living and the environment in NSW,” Ms Parker said. “Projects like those funded in this through growing and harvesting food in school Environmental Trust grant round inspire students gardens.

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Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

Badgerys: the political hot potato By Kerrie Martin

SURPRISE support for Badgerys Creek airport has been declared from state and federal Labor leaders John Robertson and Bill Shorten - as Prime Minister Tony Abbott establishes a committee of western Sydney MPs to report concerns and give advice on potential impacts. The establishment of the committee has stalled an expected decision on the second airport, but many insiders say that decision has been made and will be announced in favour of the Badgerys site within the next month. The committee is said to include Liberals Fiona Scott (Lindsay), Louise Markus (Macquarie), Russell Matheson (Macarthur) Craig Laundy (Reid) Craig Kelly (Hughes) Alex Hawke (Mitchell) and Liberal Senator Marise Payne. Many of the members have already been on the record as being against building the second airport at the Badgerys Creek site. Labor MP for Chifley, Ed Husic was expelled from the parliament

chamber last week after getting a bit hot under the collar about the selection of Liberal-only members on the committee and labeling a green light on Badgerys a lie to the Australian public from the Prime Minister. Mr Husic had moments earlier delivered a five minute address to the Chamber on the subject of Badgerys Creek Airport. “The Prime Minister has created a handpicked Committee of Sydney MPs to thrash out the issue of an airport for Badgerys Creek,” said Mr Husic. “But is there a Western Sydney Labor MP to be found anywhere on that Committee? No,” he added. “Western Sydney continues to be insulted by the Prime Minister and his Government when it comes to this vexed issue of Badgerys Creek. The latest slap in the face is a committee of Liberal MPs, some of whose electorates are vast distances from Badgerys Creek. “The Member for Mitchell, Alex Hawke’s electorate is based at Castle Hill. He is on the committee. The Member for Reid, Craig Laundy has also been invited to the table, yet his electorate office is at Burwood. Phone: (02) 4567 7711

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 Labor MP Ed Husic was ejected from parliament last week

“Just last year the then Opposition Leader, now Prime Minister Tony Abbott said there were absolutely no plans for an airport at Badgerys Creek. Well obviously there are plans for an airport at Badgerys Creek and Tony Abbott has lied to the people of Western Sydney. “I said so today in Parliament and was thrown out because of it. “But I make no apologies, because I will continue to stand up for my constituents in Chifley, good people

 Western Sydney Liberal Committee members: Senator Marise Payne and Fiona Scott MP pictured with Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

who continue to be kept in the dark and insulted,” he concluded. Many in the Penrith business sector are in support of the Badgerys Creek site, citing that the development around the airport and the jobs it would create would bring a muchneeded boost to the region. Badgerys Creek was first tagged as the proposed site for a second Sydney airport back in the 1970s and has been a hot political potato ever since.

cover story


By Kerrie Martin

A SEA of hands planting ceremony was held at Pop Up Park in Penrith last week to mark the anniversary of National Apology Day. Patrons to the event were able to paint their own hand to plant, enjoy a plate of damper and share stories. Local resident and a good friend of mine, Carolyn Gartside, shared her story with me for this article. “My Grandmother Katherine (on my father’s side) was one of the many children who were forcibly removed as a child from her family, peoples and traditional lands to work as a domestic servant on a sugar cane plantation in far North Queensland,” Carolyn said. “As my father was to relay, Katherine suffered miserably as the working conditions for a very young girl were very hard indeed; on top of missing her home and family.” Katherine was to return to her traditional land in her adult life with her children – Carolyn’s father was the eldest of her six children. “Upon her return to traditional land, Katherine was never ever to

reconnect with her own family,” Carolyn said. “The devastating impact of the removal separated Katherine for life from her immediate family. It went on to affect further generations as we were never to meet our grandmother’s brothers and sisters and to this day we do not know this part of the family.” A neighbouring group took Katherine and her children in, and adopted them into the tribal group. “My father, when speaking of members of this tribal group referred to them as our family “Murrie” way (meaning Aboriginal way - not by blood),” Carolyn said. Nine months prior to the passing of Carolyn’s father, her family took a road trip down the coast for his sister’s funeral. “On our way down, my Dad was pointing out his mother’s country and as we got closer to the coast he pointed out the location of the sugar cane plantation where my grandmother was brought to,” Carolyn remembered. “I vividly remember the sadness in my father’s brown eyes as he looked off into the distance,” she said. Carolyn made the trek to Canberra

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Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

United we stand

 Carolyn: “My Father with the shield aged 9 years old in the rainforest of his adopted lands.”

 Carolyn in Canberra - February 13, 2008.

on February 13, 2008 armed with a placard of her father who had by this time passed. “I was holding a photo of my late father, in recognition of my grandmother. “As the mother of two bi-cultural children (their father a non-Aboriginal man) and the grandmother of four bicultural children (their mother also

a non-Aboriginal woman), I believe it’s important to heal - but also acknowledge history so we can all move forward together. “We must remember what the lessons that have been learned are, and that what happened to the children of the Stolen Generation is never allowed to happen again,” Carolyn said.


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State Liberal pre-selections: Surprise Penrith nomination By Kerrie Martin

NOMINATIONS for Liberal pre-selections closed recently, and while Liberal Party HQ is not commenting on them and party policy also prevents state candidates from commenting, the rumour mills have gone into overdrive on the information that we have been able to gain. Cr Marcus Cornish recently declared a challenge on Stuart Ayres for the seat of Penrith. Many insiders were surprised - given that Mr Ayres has won two elections quite spectacularly and has been promoted several times during his tenure and is now the Minister for Fair Trading. But the biggest surprise came with the news that former Lindsay MP Jackie Kelly had also nominated for the seat. Cr Cornish has since withdrawn his nomination and says he will be backing Ms Kelly in her bid. “After careful consideration I have decided to withdraw. I will be giving Jackie Kelly my full support as she is a

proven commodity,” Cr Cornish said. “Many of Jackie’s objectives and goals for Penrith are similar to mine and coupled with her vast experience much will be achieved.” Mr Cornish said. Ms Kelly’s nomination is causing some factional unrest within the Liberal party, and many voters are weighing in on social media. One Liberal supporter told Nepean News that she felt Ms Kelly was “ruining the Liberal Party for her own self gain”. “It is time Jackie did something good for the party and Penrith - and just bow out of politics altogether,” the source said. “She brought the entire party into disrepute with her silly comments following the antics in the 2007 election, ruined the chances of an innocent candidate in Karen Chijoff and robbed John Howard of his own seat. “She then caused chaos for the Liberal candidates in the council elections and they all had to run as independents to keep her out of play.

“If that wasn’t enough, she’s wreaking havoc in state; challenging a great local member in Stuart Ayres, who is respected by both sides of politics, because she wants to have a nice view from her back yard and fight the bridge that the rest of Penrith wants and needs. Talk about selfabsorbed!”. In Londonderry, Bart Bassett has announced that he will be seeking preselection in the seat of Hawkesbury following a re-distribution causing dramatic boundary changes to the seat. As the former Mayor of Hawkesbury, Mr Bassett said he had based his decision on the large amount of constituents who he has represented for the past three years moving from Londonderry into the new electorate of Hawkesbury. . “As a former Hawkesbury Mayor, with over a decade of experience in the region, the new electorate of Hawkesbury will be made up of 95 per cent of people who already connect with me as their established representative.

“I remain totally committed to providing representation to all of the constituents of the current Londonderry electorate until the election and will continue to push for better services and infrastructure for the whole of Western Sydney as I have done for many years as a Member of Parliament, Mayor and resident. “With regard to the new electorate of Londonderry I understand that a fine, upstanding and engaged local resident has nominated to run for preselection as the Liberal Candidate for the 2015 State election.” Nepean News believes the candidate Mr Bassett refers to is Penrith Councillor Bernard Bratusa. It will be the battle of the Councillors with Labor’s declared candidate Londonderry being Cr Prue Carr. Our sources say that Tanya Davies has re-nominated unopposed for the state seat of Mulgoa. So far no Labor candidates have been named for Mulgoa or Penrith, although Labor sources say former staffer for David Bradbury, Todd Carney has his eye on a seat.

Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118


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Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

Snag a catch for NADO Consecutive kudos WHETHER you are a serious angler or prefer the more laid back approach, Fishfest is a great opportunity for the whole family to get together on the beautiful Nepean River for some outdoor fun. This weekend, the 22-23rd February, the 30th annual Fishfest Competition of Penrith Panthers Fishing Club will be held at Nepean Rowers Club. The event is open to all ages with loads of prizes for children and adults and a first prize of $1,000.00. Adult entrants are also eligible to win the major prize of a boat provided by Panthers Fishing Club and Penrith Marine. Registration is open from 9am Saturday, with the 24hr competition commencing at midday. Final weigh in is midday Sunday. Species eligible for the competition are Bass, Carp, Catfish, Freshwater Herring, Mullet and Trout. Panthers Fishing Club supports Nepean Area Disabilities Organisation (NADO) by donating a portion of every entry fee from Fishfest.

 Fishfest 2013

THE Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District (NBMLHD) has received the Minister’s Award for Excellence in the Provision of Mental Health Services for two consecutive years. The Award was given to Nepean Hospital’s Psychiatric Emergency Care Centre Team in 2012 for their unique project PECC Inspirations; a book that draws on the experience of previous patients that has resulted in reducing anxiety amongst new patients. In 2013 the Assertive Community Treatment Team won the Minister’s Award for the design of a program that administers mental health care in the home. This has enabled patients to continue activities that are important to them in the community, while significantly reducing hospital admissions and length of stay for patients with chronic illness. In addition to the Minister’s Awards, two members of NBMLHD Mental Health Care staff completed a Health Redesign Diploma from the Agency of Clinical Innovation. The program involved identifying real issues

 Liza Loobeek receives Diploma from Minister for Health

that impacted on patient experience and developing processes to improve healthcare delivery. Quality Systems Manager Liza Loobeek’s newly acquired management skills have already proven a valuable asset in the transfer of existing mental health services to the new Nepean Mental Health Centre which will open for business in March. On 15th February over 300 members of the public attended the Community Open Day of the new Centre to learn more about Mental Health Care in the hospital and community.

Golf titles boost local economy By Greg Martin

THE Western Sydney Region Veteran Golfers Association (WSRVGA) has been granted the hosting rights for the NSWVGA Stroke Play Championships for the next three years - 2014, 2015 and 2016. The event attracts men and lady golfers from all over the state and their presence in the area will bolster the economy – after all they need somewhere to stay, eat and drink and socialise. To be a veteran golfer, the men must be aged 55 years and over and the ladies, 50. Gaining the rights to host the championships is seen as a major coup for WSRVGA) which has wrested the titles from Bankstown and Liverpool clubs which have been home to them for the past eight years. The 2014 men’s championships will be held from Monday, April 14 to Wednesday, April 16 at the highly-rated courses of Richmond, Penrith and the Greg Norman-designed Stonecutters Ridge at Plumpton. The Veteran Women’s Golf Association of NSW is conducting events in conjunction for Lady Veteran Golfers, on both the Monday and Tuesday at Richmond and Penrith. Tournament director, Leon’s Les Knox, says the 54-holes men’s Strokeplay Champion will be awarded with the ‘Des Coady Shield’ which this year is sponsored by Warren Saunders Insurance Broker).

11 Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

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 Heartland Holden principal, John Veitch (r) has always been a strong supporter of veteran golf in Western Sydney. He is pictured congratulating tournament director Les Knox on the local association’s coup in snaring the state championships.

“The event caters for veteran golfers of all ages and ability, with trophies being awarded to both 54-holes Nett and Scratch Winners in three grades, 54 holes Age Champions in three Divisions, plus daily net and scratch winners in each grade, Les said. With significant sponsorship from the Richmond Club, Australand Pty Ltd., Penrith Golf Club, Stonecutters Ridge Golf Club and Warren Saunders Insurance Brokers, the entry fee has been contained

to just $99 for the three days of golf competition. The entry fee includes a luncheon on the final day at Stonecutters Ridge, prior to the presentation of trophies. Don’t for one moment think that because of the veteran status, most of those playing during the tournament will be “old hacks”. “We have a small handful of entries from golfers who play off scratch and there are many teeing off boasting low single figures handicaps,” Les said.

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Hitting the spot AN innovative procedure performed at Nepean Hospital is helping people who have very high blood pressure and are resistant to medications to once again lead a normal life. The ‘renal denervation’ procedure is an Australian invention with a success rate of 80 per cent. For suitable patients the procedure involves applying heat through a special catheter inside each renal artery in multiple spots, therefore disrupting sympathetic nerves running on the surface of the artery. This reduces sympathetic tone (the process that leads to resistant blood pressure via involuntary sympathetic nerves) and therefore reduces blood pressure significantly. Two interventional cardiologists with special training in the delicate procedure perform the surgery at Nepean Hospital, Dr Hisham Hallani and Dr Clyne Fernandes. “In 80 per cent of cases the patient’s blood pressure comes down within 30 days of the procedure and continues to do so for the first 6 months before it stabilises” Dr Hallani says. Unfortunately not everyone with high blood pressure who is resistant to

medications is eligible. “The procedure is limited to people with difficult to control hypertension with systolic blood pressure where high blood pressure medication is not working effectively – this affects around 5-10 per cent of people.” Furthermore, some people simply don’t have the right anatomy. “Some patients have two renal arteries or can have blockages or simply the wrong size artery. Those who have hypertension as a result of disease are also excluded. Dr Hallani says the procedure is not a substitute for medications.

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Perceiving by Aunty N.

EMMAUS Catholic College at Kemps Creek has commenced the 2014 school year with a new Principal. Dr Brad Campbell, previously Principal at Gilroy Catholic College at Castle Hill, replaced Mr Paul Ryan who has moved to St. Columba’s Catholic College at Springwood as Principal. Having begun his teaching career at Patrician Brothers College at Liverpool, Dr Campbell has taught at several schools in the Parramatta Diocese. He enjoys the challenges and opportunities presented in various educational environments with experience gained over 30 years of service. “I look forward to my work at Emmaus”, he said, “interacting with students, staff and the community to best serve the learning achievements

and potential of each individual member”. In October 2011, Brad Campbell graduated from the Australian Catholic University at Strathfield with a Doctorate of Education, the reward for six years study and completion of a thesis which investigated the links between ‘leading, learning and student engagement’. Commenting on the results of his research and experience, Dr Campbell said “my research has renewed my commitment to working with teachers to ensure that we create schools and classrooms built around learning as opposed to just subject areas”. Together with his qualifications and experience, Dr Campbell brings energy and enthusiasm to his new post at Emmaus College.

PISCES the fish is the twelfth sign of the Zodiac for those born between February 19 and March 20. The ruling planets are Neptune - the planet of illusion, and Jupiter - the planet of good fortune and ideas. These influences explain why Pisceans inhabit a world of fantasy and reality simultaneously; their active imagination promotes an open mind to new ideas and situations. As the final sign of the zodiac, Pisceans inherit traits from all other signs and are known as the chameleons of the zodiac. They can be difficult to understand as their walk doesn’t always match their talk, one can never really know what goes on in a mind full of dreams and secrets. A mutable Water sign, Pisces is adaptive, sensitive and excessively empathic. This can lead to a saviour complex and the fish needs to set boundaries lest others take advantage of their caring nature. Pisceans are idealistic, emotional and may be prone to mood swings. They are easily hurt and need to be on guard against self-pity.


15 Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

New principal welcomed

Often portrayed as wishy-washy, Pisceans can be practical, creative and innovative when suitably motivated. They are most productive when following their own path, regardless of convention. Examples of Pisceans in this vein are Albert Einstein, Michelangelo, Elizabeth Taylor, Kurt Cobain and Dr Seuss. Careers that may appeal to the fish include religious life, pharmacist/ medicine and nursing, therapist, activist, photography/film and animation, creative writing, the Arts, psychic medium and bartender/ hospitality. Pisceans are most compatible with Water and Earth signs, particularly Taurus, Cancer, Scorpio and Capricorn. Air signs have a rational perception of the world that is almost alien to some fish and Fire signs may exacerbate Piscean insecurities.




Come at 4pm for 1st tour and then presentation at 6 pm or come at 6 pm for presentation then 2nd tour ~ General information followed by classroom visits, displays and tours Every aspect of the College meets the needs of students, giving them the best preparation for modern life in the 21st Century. We are committed to providing unique and enriching learning experiences for all students. Students and Parents at Emmaus experience: • a College with strong traditional values and high expectations of all its students • a place where prayer and sacrament are valued and nourished • a place where life-enhancing relationships are characterised by respect and authenticity • a learning environment of challenge, discovery and innovation, where each student is expected to personally excel • an exciting transition year in Year 7 • a broad choice of courses in Years 9 – 12 • advanced technology enriching the learning environment with extensive vocational courses and university and TAFE linked courses in Years 10 - 12 • a wide variety of sports played at a representative level and cultural opportunities including Visual Arts, Digital Photography, Dance, Drama, Mock Trial and Music recitals • a highly qualified and committed teaching staff • a community where personal responsibility and justice are valued and expected • a peaceful and beautiful rural environment

Emmaus Catholic College is a Catholic, dynamic, learning community where parents, staff and families “Walk with Jesus”:

For further details, application and prospectus, please contact Mrs Biermann 9670 4588 or visit

16 Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

Legends of the Nepean By Greg Martin

YOU know that favourite fishing spot where you are certain that every time you throw in a line, you hook a fish?

Occasionally your writer, without the aid of a nomination for our Legends of the Nepean article, has to search to find a suitable subject but he knows a place where he can always snag a catch.

 Trooper Tony Fryer’s parents came down from Newcastle to welcome him home from Vietnam.

And that special place is “The Train” at St Marys RSL, home of the local branch of the National Serviceman’s Association of Australia (NSAA). You don’t even need to place yummy bait on the hook - just throw in a line and, “whammy”, you reel in another heart- warming and inspirational story. This story belongs to 64-yearold Tony Fryer, The Train’s hardworking Pensions Officer – a Vietnam veteran whom, like many of his fellow comrades in arms from that horrific conflict, has found solace and peace in being involved with the NSAA. It was impossible not to become emotional when interviewing an obviously emotional Tony who, I’m sure, wouldn’t mind my writing that he had a glisten in his eyes when recounting his time in Vietnam and its aftermath. More than four decades after his deployment in the jungles of Vietnam, Tony, as are many of his fellow Diggers, is still fighting on another front – battling Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSS). In telling his story, Tony readily admitted that he has to daily fix his

bayonet and fight the good fight against PTS. “It is an ongoing battle but I am mostly able to keep the demons at bay thanks to this job, the professional services offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs and of course the love and support of my wife Nora and sons, James and Allan,” Tony explained. Tony was reluctant to become a Legend of the Nepean subject but your scribe, was eventually able to pull him on-board. So I was able to bear Tony in his den – a cramped office at St Marys RSL where he wears another hat as secretary of the RSL sub-branch. Tony refused to admit that he “did anything special” in his roles with The Train and sub-branch but others were not backward in being forward in singing his praises. “Nothing is too hard for him to do”; “always rolls up his sleeves to do the hard yards”;” totally professional in everything he does”; “a great mate to all of us”. Tony says his involvement with The Train has helped him “immensely” in staving off the demons of PTS, He joined The Train in 2005 and since then, working and socialising


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TONY FRYER Tony laughed when he explained why he ended up as a crew commander on an Armed Personnel (APC) Carrier and not a crew member aboard a huge Centurion tank. “On arrival at Puckapunyal we were pointed out a Centurion tank and an APC – we were told to spend 10 minutes inspecting both vehicles and then make a decision as to which we wanted to become crew,” he said. “I climbed on the Centurion and tried to lift the engine cover – those tanks are built to withstand heavy fire and I’m not the strongest bloke on the block and let me tell you, the cover was almost impossible to lift. “So it was the APC for me!” Tony was then posted to 3 Cavalry Regiment at Holsworthy which also involved another course at the Jungle Training centre at Canungra. So in June, 1971, Tony and his unit were off to Vietnam where their main theatre of operations was north of Nui Dat on the giant Courtney Rubber Plantation. Tony was reluctant to recount the engagements he and his unit had with the enemy but admitted “we had our fair share of contacts”. With the war winding down,

Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

with fellow Vietnam vets has contributed to his current well-being. “We can all relate to each other’s experiences – being able to talk things over with people who have gone through what I’ve gone through is very cathartic,” Tony said. 2005 was also the year Tony joined the RSL. “So what,” I hear you ask. The previous time he wanted to become a member of the RSL has always left a bitter taste in Tony’s mouth. “A few weeks after being demobbed in March, 1972, I walked into a local RSL and asked for a membership application,” Tony said. “One of the members asked me where I had served and I told him ‘Vietnam’ and he said to me, “go away son, and come back after you’ve fought in a real war’ – I was gutted!” Tony, who grew up in working class Waratah in Newcastle, had his birthdate pulled out of a hat for the National Service intake of September, 1970. After basic training in Singleton, he opted to attend a three months course at the Armoured Centre at Puckapunyal.


Tony was among the last group of Australians to depart Vietnam, cruising back into Sydney aboard HMAS Sydney in March, 1972 “I had joined the Commonwealth Bank straight out of school and worked in the New Lambton and Broadmeadow branches before being called up,” Tony said. “As with all other Nashos, our jobs were left open for us and I ended up being placed in the Kingsford branch in Sydney and later was transferred to a management role in Coogee where I was fortunate to meet Nora who was also on the staff - we were married in May, 1978.”

Tony’s battle against PTS continues to this day but with the support of family, friends and his passion for woodturning – he’s a member of the Western Sydney Woodturners Guild – Tony is winning the battle. And for that, let’s be forever thankful.

Tony Fryer were nominated as a Legend of the Nepean by Kerrie Martin. If you know a local legend, send us a nomination at

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E N T E R T A I N M E N T 18 Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

Autumn adventures Blue Mountains Garden Safari Embark on an autumn adventure! X marks the spots to enjoy fun handson activities and discover amazing plants from around the world. For children aged 5–12 years. 9.30am5pm. Collect your Garden Safari kit from the Visitor Information Desk. $5 per kit. Sunday 9 March 2014 Garden Grooves presents Kate Miller-Heidke 2pm–4pm. $50 – on the Formal Lawn. Bookings essential through Bring a picnic rug or low beach chair for comfort. Kiosk and limited bar available. Saturday 15 March – Sunday 25 May The Breathing Conifer – Exhibition by Phillippa Carnemolla 9.30am–5pm. Free – in the Visitor Centre. Saturday 17 May Exhibition Artist Workshop with Phillippa Carnemolla 10am–3pm. $95 includes morning and afternoon tea.

Bookings essential. Phone 9231 8182 or email or book online see Saturday 3 May 2014 TomahROMA – food and wine fair 9am–4pm. Free entry. Contact details: Call: (02) 4567 3000 Email: Find us on Facebook Entry to the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden, Mount Tomah is free.



nepean history

Harp of Erin Inn

CONTINUING on with the Cummins family of the “Harp of Erin Inn” –William Cummins held the licence of the inn until 1861 when he instructed Auctioneer Charles Cottrell to sell by auction in June at the inn “All those valuable premises situated at St Marys, South Creek and known as the sign of the HARP OF ERIN INN and at present in full trade. The premises contains a bar, tearoom, two parlours, four bedrooms, kitchen, stabling, large shed, commodious yard, well-secured vegetable garden, etc. Attached are two comfortable fourroom cottages let to respectable tenants and yielding a rental of thirteen shillings weekly. This valuable property is situated in the centre of the goahead town of St Marys boarded on the north by that never failing stream of pure water, South Creek and within one mile of the St Marys railway station. The proprietor’s reason for disposing of this valuable property is his having made arrangements to enter into other pursuits. Title Guaranteed.” The partnership with Alexander Pollock crumbled when a notice in the “Empire” in 1862 published by William Cummins of St Marys South Creek stated that “The public are hereby cautioned not to give any credit to my late partner Alexander Pollock of Douglas Park on my account without previously consulting me”. In a reminiscence by “Old Timer” in the Nepean Times attesting to the state of the highway and what amounted to a teamster’s nightmare in the days of the bullocky and coachman at Cummins Hill (Quarry Hill). It had been recorded that a dozen teams had been bogged on it during bad weather. At one time there was a spring of water bang in the middle of the highway that was somehow later diverted or eliminated. William’s son, William Cummins (Jnr) was born at St Marys in 1850 and became very well known around the Dubbo area after buying the Burrabadeen property. He was one of the first Councillors on the Talbragar Shire Council and served from 1906–1912. This photo of William was taken around that time. Several of his extended family lived in the Dubbo, Bathurst and Orange area. One thing for sure is that from 1845 to 1847 this Irish Cummins’ family group were not short on using the Police Courts to settle their differences. A tragic event happened in November, 1886 when a boy named James Cummins who was the son of Edward Cummins an innkeeper at Orange (and part of the extended family) was drowned in the Macquarie River at Burrabadeen. He was visiting his grandfather William Cummins and went bathing with a family friend who was teaching him to swim. They were unaware of the danger of the water and got into trouble when James’ legs were washed around the friend’s neck. Patrick Cummins an Uncle of James saw the danger and tried to help but after desperate attempts to rescue James the rushing water washed him away of any hope of recovery and the friend and Uncle only just managed to save themselves. In the

Sydney Morning Herald in 1927 a death notice was placed for Helen Cummins who died at the age of 74 at her residence, 2 Kiora Road, Double Bay and was the dearly beloved wife of William Cummins (Jnr) late of Dubbo and loving mother of Mary, Sister M Joseph, William (Cummins No. 3) and Eileen. William (Jnr) died in October 1930 and his obituary was released in the Catholic Press that stated “On Friday, a grand old pioneer in the person of Mr William Cummins was called to his reward at Kiora Road, Double Bay not long after he had passed his 80th year. Mrs Cummins predeceased him by three years and after that separation he was never the same. Twelve months later he suffered a stroke and had been practically an invalid ever since. Nevertheless, he bore his sufferings with wonderful fortitude and cheer. A fortnight ago his wonderful constitution could no longer withstand the toll that was being demanded of it and he passed peacefully away about midday. During his illness he had the constant care and attention of his two daughters and his only surviving son. Born at St Marys near Penrith, the late Mr Cummins was reared in a farming atmosphere. After leaving there he visited various parts of the State but eventually settled in the Dubbo district purchasing the now well-known property “Burrabadeen,” on the Narromine side of the town. That was in the early 1880’s. He remained on this property for nearly 25 years and left it 15 years ago as one of the best improved holdings in the district. Like his fellow pioneers he worked hard and well earned the retirement into which he entered. He selected Double Bay as his home and remained there until the time of his death. The late Mr Cummins could honestly be termed one of nature’s gentlemen. He was a good neighbour and one from whom was never heard anything but kindly references. The Dubbo district knew him as “Honest Bill” Cummins whose word was his bond and whose friendship was sought and always held. At the inception of Local Government he was one of the first councillors elected to the Talbragar Shire Council and he was also elevated to the honorary magistracy. The departure of the Cummins family was a distinct loss to the Dubbo district, for in Church matters as in civic, the “Burrabadeen” people were always to the fore. The news of his decease will be received in the western towns with many expressions of genuine regret. Left to mourn the loss of their exemplary father are: Mrs W. Murray (Polly), Mrs Cecil Tarrant, Sister Joseph (Convent of Mercy, Dubbo), and Mr William Cummins, Jun. He also leaves a sister (Mrs Renshaw of Orange) and a brother (Mr Patrick Cummins of Annandale, (Sydney). A Solemn Requiem Mass was celebrated at St. Joseph’s Church, Woollahra on Saturday morning and the same afternoon the remains were interred alongside those of his wife in South Head Cemetery. Rev. Father R. Piper, O.F.M., officiated at the graveside.”

Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118


Lyn Forde, Vice-President of St Marys & District Historical Society Inc


BUILDING A NATION -FROM COX TO CAMPAIGNS Penrith City Council & Library will be holding its 13th Makings of a City History Conference on Saturday 8 March 2014 in the Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre, Richard Bonynge Concert Hall, 597 High Street Penrith. 8.30am for a 9am start. Conference ends at afternoon tea at 4pm. Programme: • Introduction by Lorraine Stacker • Keynote Address - Dr Anne-Maree Whitaker - Building a Nation & William Cox, the man • John Brock – Surveyor George Evans • Associate Professor Carol Liston – Building and maintenance of roads in Colonial times and the records that can assist local researchers • Richard Cox – tales from his upcoming book on the early colonial landed gentry - ’an unruly … collection of adventurers’ • Lorraine Stacker – Patriotic Penrith and the impact of the War on the local area. Cost: $40 payable to Penrith City Library. Includes all presentations, conference pack, refreshments on arrival, lunch and morning and afternoon teas.

The grand parade down High Street on 18 July 1914 to mark the Centenary of the Western Road (Penrith City Library)

To purchase tickets phone 4732 8040 or email

22 Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

Gyms that tick all the boxes ARE you finding it hard to get to the Gym? Plus Fitness 24/7 has made it easier than ever! With member access 24 hours a day 7 days a week, you get to work out when you want to, not when you have to. Franchisees Fiona Simpson and Shaun Cameron-Lee opened their sixth club just before Xmas. “People love the clean, safe, air-conditioned environments our clubs provide. Over half our members are brand new to exercise and say they find our gyms inviting and unintimidating. As business owners It’s great to know that we are helping people get back to a healthy lifestyle” There are no lock-in contracts at Plus Fitness 24/7 and membership costs just $13 per week for unlimited visits. The clubs are fully fitted out with the latest strength and cardio equipment and most have virtual class rooms which provide 24 hr on-demand classes. When you join at one club you automatically get access to every Plus Fitness 24/7 club in Australia. “With our clubs conveniently located at Mount Druitt, St Marys, Penrith, Blaxland, Hazelbrook and Katoomba, we’ve got the Nepean and Blue Mountains region covered” says Shaun As a franchise Plus Fitness 24/7 is

an Australian success story with 130 territories sold in under 3 years. It was listed as the 8th fastest growing company in Australia in 2013 by BRW and at the Franchise Council of Australia’s ‘Excellence in Franchising Awards’ held in October last year won the coveted ‘Emerging Franchise of the Year Award’. Plus Fitness is

committed to a healthier Australia. So if you’re new to exercise, our qualified personal trainers will provide you with a free fitness assessment and program to get you started. If you’re an experienced exerciser we can support you in all your fitness goals. So call or drop in to your nearest club today!

CROSSWORD ACROSS 8 Young males (4) 9 Kinds or sorts (5) 10 Mother of Zeus (Greek mythology) (4) 11 Phlegm (6) 12 A disposition to kindness (8) 13 Spanish ranch (8) 15 Strain (6) 17 Monumental (7) 19 Foolish (7) 22 Shortsighted (6) 24 Rotating (8) 26 Pertaining to a court of justice (8) 28 Cow-like (6) 30 A style of jazz (4) 31 Result (5) 32 Absorb written material (4)

DOWN 1 Gunk (4) 2 Receptacles for cigarette ash (8) 3 Nuclear (6) 4 Quip (7) 5 Adopted (a cause) (8) 6 A sliding box in a bureau (6) 7 Shout (4) 14 Precarious (5) 16 Heir (5) 18 Innoculations (8) 20 Eats plants and animals (8) 21 Incapable (7) 23 Anguished (6) 25 Suffuses with color (6) 27 Murres (4) 29 Built an ark (4)

solution 6/2/14


finance matters

Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

BE CAUTIOUS IN A HOT MARKET With Steve Beard Select Mortgage Broker

IN my November article, I wrote about the very high demand for property and how this demand has been driving up prices. Well since then, demand has only increased and it is the hottest market for many, many years. This strong demand is driven by the historically low home loan interest rates combined with high confidence. For the Sydney metropolitan area, some monitors have recorded price increases over 16 per cent over the last 12 months. If you are thinking of selling any property, now is a great time to consider cashing in! Just about every well-presented property is being sold within the first few days of listing. I have heard many

reports from frustrated purchasers that they find it very difficult to even see new listings as they are being sold before the first open for inspection on the weekend. This is great news if you’re selling an investment property, but is difficult for people who want to sell their home and buy another property to live in at the same time. They can easily sell but then have the problem of finding something suitable to buy. There are two ways to give yourself some time to fund and buy your next home and avoid the dreaded double move. If you sell your home to an investor, you can negotiate to rent your home (hopefully at a low rent) until you move out. The other option is to increase the settlement time in your sales contract from the usual 6 weeks to as many weeks as you think you may need. This will be subject to purchaser

Do you have time to compare over 30 lenders?

agreement of course, but an extension can usually be arranged. If you are upgrading or buying an investment property, you should also be very careful and not get carried away with paying ridiculous prices. So the big question for these people is “do I buy now or wait until a correction may occur?” I wish I had the answer to that one as it may continue to rise a while before any correction occurs, if at all. The hotter the market becomes the higher the chances of a correction in prices. A correction could occur very quickly and if it starts, will be because of people losing confidence - which will happen if they lose their job, or their overtime or are worried about losing those things. Unemployment rates in Australia have increased again last month to the highest levels since 2003

Ph: 4739 4500 Mob: 0403 166 207 Email:

Unemployment in NSW has been steady at 5.8 per cent and is below the national figure of 6.0 per cent. Hence the higher demand for property in the Sydney region. The other main driver of demand is interest rates of course. It looks pretty likely at the moment that the Reserve Bank will keep rates at current levels for the next few months or even longer, unless unemployment rates continue to rise, then they may lower the rates again if they need to increase overall consumer confidence. This information is of a general nature and should seek the advice of experts before taking any action regarding your finances. Please do not hesitate to contact me on 4739 4500, 0403 166207 or if you what to discuss any financial matters or have any Home Finance questions that I can assist you with.

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Nepean News 10 October 2013 Issue 110


BRAND NEW 3 BEDROOM HOME - $539,700 Settlers Estate

The wait is over, this perfect house and land package is simply ideal for today’s modern family. This brand new designer home features three large bedrooms with ensuite and walk-in to main, modern Kitchen with the latest appliances and stone Benchtops, large living and dining area, designer alfresco area for all your entertaining needs, double remote control garage with two remotes all set on a 352sqm (approx) block in Penrith’s newest land release Settlers Estate. These packages have already seen a lot of attention so be sure to get in fast. To secure your dream home and receive a full list of inclusions please call Parker and Partners Real Estate on 4722 6933 or visit the Settlers Site office on the corner of French and George street opening Saturday 10am (site office Hours 10am5pm).

BRAND NEW 4 BEDROOM HOME - $614,990 Settlers Estate Combing modern design and elegance with the perfect location, this brand new, large, four bedroom home with a large open plan dining and living area, full designer Kitchen with 900 mm stainless steel appliances, high 2590mm ceilings and all set on a 450 (approx) square meter block in the highly sought after Settlers estate located in close proximity to local shops, public transport, health facilities ,schools and tranquil parklands. A House and land package like this will not last long so be sure to secure this once in a life time marvel today. For further information please call Parker and partners real estate on (02) 4722 6933.


This brand new double story designer home features four large bedrooms with ensuite and walk-in to main, modern Kitchen with the latest appliances and stone Benchtops, large living and dining area, designer alfresco area for all your entertaining needs, single remote control garage with two remotes all set on a large 450sqm (approx) block in Penrith’s newest land release Settlers Estate. This package offers a spacious graceful and modern way of living and is situated in close proximity to schools, local shops, medical facilities and parklands. These packages have already seen a lot of attention so be sure to get in fast. To secure your dream home and receive a full list of inclusions please call Parker and Partners Real Estate on 4722 6933 or visit the Settlers Site office on the corner of French and George street opening Saturday 10am (site office Hours 10am-5pm).


BRAND NEW 4 BEDROOM HOME IN IDEAL LOCATION - $529,990 Jordan Springs Yes it’s true you can now be the owner of a brand new four bedroom home with a large open plan dining and living area, full designer Kitchen with 900 mm stainless steel appliances, high 2590mm ceilings and much, much more. This ideal family home is set in the highly sought after Jordan Springs estate located in close proximity to local shops, public transport, health and fitness centres, and schools. A House and land package like this will not last long so be sure to secure this once in a life time marvel today. For further information and a full inclusions list please call Parker and partners real estate on (02) 4722 6933

PERFECT LOT SIZE - $319,750 Settlers Estate

Have you been searching for the ideal family community, an estate that offers a large variety of vacant lots as well as modern and spacious house and land packages? Well let me welcome you to SETTLERS Penrith’s newest estate. The Settlers Estate offers easy access to the M4 motorway and Great Western Highway and is located in close proximity to schools, the University of Western Sydney, Nepean Hospital, local shops, places of worship and public transport. Another feature to the estate is the central parkland within the development, with wide open spaces to encourage community interaction and recreation. This 450 sqm block is set on the high side of the estate, ensuring for the best views that settlers has to offer, the blocks are set opposite the settlers parkland, which means that the perfect, peaceful, playful family picnic is just metres away from your doorstep. The settlers estate features a marvellous, picturesque surrounding with mature trees and native vegetation that promote its natural setting. To Register interest today call (02) 4722 6933 to ensure that you can secure your dream lot today

NEW LONDONDERRY LAND RELEASE – FROM $279,990 Londonderry Estate Fantastic vacant land in the heart of Londonderry. If you have been looking for vacant land in a sought after area this is it, located in the Heart of Londonderry Village and, in close proximity to shops, local parks and schools yet only minutes from Richmond or Penrith. Properties such as this are hard to find if you are looking at large lots don’t miss out. Contact Parker & Partners Real estate on (02) 4722 6933.


Settlers Estate

Mulgoa Rise

Welcome to the ideal family community, an estate that offers a large variety of vacant lots as well as modern and spacious house and land packages. The Settlers Estate offers easy access to the M4 motorway and Great Western Highway and is located in close proximity to schools, the University of Western Sydney, Nepean Hospital, local shops, places of worship and public transport. Another feature to the estate is the central parkland within the development, with wide open spaces to encourage community interaction and recreation. These 350+ sqm blocks feature the perfect dimensions to accommodate houses to suite any budget, the blocks are also ideally located to enjoy the best of what settlers has to offer. The settlers estate features a marvellous, picturesque surrounding with mature trees and native vegetation that promote its natural setting. To Register interest today call (02) 4722 6933 to ensure that you can secure your dream lot today.

Be sure to get in quick because this, large, double story brand new four bedroom 29 Square (approx) home will not last long, this home includes; a large open plan dining and living areas, full designer Kitchen with Caesarstone kitchen benchtop 900 mm stainless steel appliances, alarm system, split system air conditioner, package also includes driveway path and fencing. This marvel is set on a fantastic block in the highly sought after Mulgoa Rise estates situated in close proximity to shops public transport and schools. As mentioned House and land package like this will not last long so be sure to secure this once in a life time opportunity today. For further information and a full list of inclusions please call parker and partners real estate on (02) 4722 6933.



Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

ON THE MAT THE 2014 District Fours was played at Glenbrook Panthers and Wallacia with Wallacia hosting the quarter finals, semi-finals and final. Skips with byes in the 1st round at Wallacia were Phil Heath (Glenbrook), Matt Slager (Blacktown City), Mark Coleman (Blacktown City). Winning skips were Bob Hunter (Kingswood), Bob Rafferty (Springwood), Bill Walton (Blacktown Workers) Trent Whittingham (Penrith) and Steve Swan (St Marys RSL). Skips with byes in the 1st round at Glenbrook Panthers were Gerard Short (Austral), Greg Felton (Penrith) and Ray Douglas (Springwood). Winning skips were Vic Orchard (Penrith), Jim Lord (Penrith), Grant Rogers (Austral), Jeremy Suffolk (Blacktown Workers) and Paul Faorlin (Blacktown Workers). Round 2 winners at Wallacia were Matt Slager, Mark Coleman, Bob Rafferty and Steve Swan. Round 2 winners at Glenbrook Panthers were Jim Lord, Jeremy Suffolk, Paul Faorlin and Ray Douglas. Quarter final games were played at Wallacia on January 5 and one game pitted club-mates Matt Slager and Mark Coleman against each other with Matt coming out victorious.

The other quarter final winners were Steve Swan over Bob Rafferty, Jeremy Suffolk over Jim Lord (by 2 shots), and Paul Faorlin over Ray Douglas. Once again in one semi-final, clubmates from Blacktown Workers Paul Faorlin and Jeremy Suffolk battled it out with Paul the eventual winner. The other semi -final was won by Steve Swan over Matt Slager. The final was set down for January 11at Wallacia and the players and spectators were greeted with mid-30 temperatures. The teams making the final were Tony Pelle, Wayne Cox, Chris Hainey and Paul Faorlin (Blacktown Workers) and Wayne Rixon, Ian Codner, Ross Antram and Steve Swan (St Marys RSL). Spectators saw Workers jump out of the gates with a 5 on the first end. The game did not get any better for St Marys RSL, dropping multiple scores of 4 on the 4th end, 6 on the 7th end and 6 on the 10th end. The final score was 31-5 and Blacktown Workers took out the first District event for 2014. They will now compete in the Zone Final at Wallacia on June 28-29.

With Col Crossingham

THE 2014 District Triples Final was an all Austral affair fought out at Springwood on January 19. The first semi-final was Tony White, Steve McMahon and Grant Rogers from Austral playing John ‘Spook’ Davis, Andrew Burnett and Mick Bedford from St Marys RSL. Austral ran out winners 23-12. The second semi-final was Austral’s Henry Bielderman, Chris Griffiths and Steve Wilcock playing John Hancott, Dennis Boxsell and Ray Douglas (Springwood) with Austral winning 25-22. In the final, Rogers’ team led 5-0 after 2 ends then Wilcocks’ team scored 15 on the next 8 ends to lead 15-3 after 10 ends. Ends were shared fairly evenly from then to the end with Wilcocks’ winning 25-14. They will now play in the Zone Final at Glenbrook Panthers on July 5-6.

To get to the final Troy and Trent defeated Stephen Bain and Stuart Waye (Blacktown Workers) 27-7 and Gavin and Greg defeated Greg Felton and Peter Davis (Penrith) 27-15. The final got off to a cracking start with Greg leading 7-3 after 5 ends. Trent scored 4 on the next two ends to tie it up at 7-all then scored 2 to lead 9-7 after 8 ends. On the next end Greg scored 2 to tie it up again after which shots were traded fairly evenly until the 20th end when Trent led 18-15. On the last end with 2 bowls to go, Greg held 2 shots and needed 1 to tie and go to an extra end or 2 to win the game. Trent played his last bowl and unfortunately went a bit narrow and bumped one of Greg’s bowls into the count. This meant that the game was tied, however Greg drew a shot with his last bowl took the game 19-18.

THE State Pairs for 2014 culminated in one of the best finishes seen for some time. The finalists were a repeat of the 2013 final being Troy Rodgers and Trent Whittingham (Penrith) and Gavin Holburn and Greg Jeans (Glenbrook Panthers).

ALL the Zone Pairs Finals will be played at Blacktown City on June 1213. State, President’s Reserve and Senior Singles events are underway at present and the semi-finals and finals will be held at Wallacia this Saturday.



NOTHING much has excited me out of recent trials so in this edition let’s just have a gander at the neddies I tipped you last time. A few of them are still to get onto the race track but the outstanding Real Surreal surely has placed a few Able Scholars in your sky rockets. BERNABEAU: Finished at the tail of the field in last Saturday’s Lighting Stakes at Flemington. It was a disappointing run by the galloper who was heavily backed to win on the back of his excellent trial effort at Warwick Farm on January 28. The run was too poor to be true. Too poor to be true! GHIBELLINES: Resumed from a spell with a very solid 3rd behind Fighting Sun in the Canonbury Stakes at Rosehill on February 15. Like all Peter

Snowden runners, the staying-bred galloper will derive a lot of benefit from the hit-out. REAL SURREAL: This classy youngster has sported silks twice since we tipped her and she’s got the bikkies on both occasions. John Hawkes took her up to Queensland to win at Eagle Farm on January 5 and she followed that up by winning the Magic Millions 2YO Classic. This might be the one to beat in the Golden Slipper! RED TRACER: Still hasn’t got to the track since her barrier trial. Top class mare which hasn’t raced since beating the best mares in the land in the Myer Classic at Flemington on November 2. Fully primed to bring home the bacon first-up. ROCK STURDY: Joe Pride has yet to bring this



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Tony Brassel is one of the most respected judges of horseflesh in the country. He is a form expert and racing analyst with SKY Racing and radio 2KY and has now joined the Nepean News’ stable of quality journalists. three-year-old Fastnet Rock colt to the races but on his trial form, Joe looks to have a handy galloper on his hands. I’m putting away a few bucks each week to plonk on this bloke when he sports silks. SHEEZALADY: Gai Waterhouse is showing a lot of patience with this 2YO by Duporth out of Famous Courtisan. On what she’s shown me at the trials, this young lassie looks to have a bright future. THAT’S A GOOD IDEA: Another exciting young galloper out of the Joe Pride stables. He’s already won six of his 14 starts including four of his past five which included victories over smart types such as Field Marshall and Heart Testa. Joe’s obviously picked out something suitable first-up so watch out for this bloke,




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Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118




my words

30 Nepean News 20 February 2014 Issue 118

WATCHING the inaugural Auckland 9’s last weekend a few things stood out. How big, strong, and skilful the modern day rugby league player is! How good Sam Tomkins will be for the Warriors this season. And how good it was to have rugby league back on our screens after a one-sided summer of cricket. You sense 2014 is shaping up as one of “those memorable years”. A year in which we can all get on with life after the past 12 months being dogged by that big black ASADA cloud. It was around this same time last season when the Federal government announced that it was “the blackest day in Australian sport”. Sure it got bad, but the supposed black cloud barely reached grey of colour. While every player’s name was tarnished, the massive investigation has thus far claimed just the one victim, Sandor Earl. Sorry, I must add that Cronulla were fined a million and coach, Shane Flanagan, was suspended for a year, while ex-trainer .Trent Elkin, was

banned from the game. That’s just three scalps! There are 400 players in the NRL. I’m all for a clean game and agree that anyone caught using anything illegal that makes their performance better should be kicked out of the game for good. But surely someone somewhere must make some sort of apology to the other 399 players who now have an “hmm I wonder” hanging over them every time one of them produces some sort of out-of-the-box Herculean effort on the footy field? It’s not fair! Watching the 9’s you can see for

yourself just how hard the modernday footballer works to get his body in shape to play in the world’s most physical contact sport. I hope we can start this season with no such announcement at what seemed such a hurriedly convened press conference back in early February of 2013. The 2014 season has started with a bang thanks to the Auckland 9’s, which in my opinion should be now an annual event. The sold-out crowds in Auckland and the massive viewership on Fox indicate we’re itching for our league. Bring it on!


THREE of the Panthers’ major new signings shone for the club in a trial match against Wentworthville at Sportingbet Stadium last Saturday. Brent Kite (Manly), Peter Wallace (Broncos) and Jamal Idris (Titans) took to the field in a combined NRL/NSW Cup squad for their first hit-outs in the new season. All three players played leading roles in the Panthers’ 52-10 win. Big Jamal got the pill in his hands in the opening minutes and ploughed through the defence to open the scoring and always looked dangerous in attack and defence for the 30 minutes he spent out on the paddock. The veteran Kite was rock-solid with his defence around the rucks and looks as though he’ll be playing a strong hand for his new club throughout the 2014 season. But it was Wallace who most impressed! His leadership in attack and defence was terrific and his kicking game was a delight to behold, especially his accurate bombing which led to several Panthers tries. Wallace was rewarded with his own try and potted eight goals from nine attempts in a bottler of a performance. Augers well for a successful year for the mighty Panthers!

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Thursday, 20 February 2014



I WAS among a group of old ffootballers who converged on the Gold Coast a fortnight back to visit an old mate who is doing it tough on the medical front. That old mate is Ralph Michaels who recently underwent neurosurgery to remove tumours from his brain. The surgery has left Ralphie partially paralysed down his right side – fortunately his good drinking hand was at its best, with the leftie enjoying his fair share of thirst quenchers when we took him and his lovely wife, Glynis, out to lunch at their local Palm Beach Surf Club. Ralph learned his footy at Richmond, played junior representative matches with Penrith (he was a member of the Panthers’ inaugural S.G. Ball (under 15) squad in 1967) and was good enough to play six first grade matches in ’71 before accepting an offer to join Brisbane club, Norths. Ralph, a tall, evasive and fleetfooted centre, gave tremendous service to the Devils over many seasons before hanging up his well-worn boots.

Ralph is the father of current Titans outside back, Steve, who has certainly “thrown” to the sire, possessing plenty of pace and football skills. I was two years older than Ralph so our paths never crossed on the footy field back then but whenever Riverstone played Richmond, I always got to the sideline to see him in action before heading into the sheds to change for my match. He was a very exciting footballer and was and still is an extraordinary bloke. Among those who got along to the lunch were blokes who also wore the brown and white of the early Panthers – Denis Coffey, Phil Ryan, Nicky Saad, Sam Gwynne and yours truly - I played in the ’67 Jersey Flegg side and had a handful of third grade games in ’70 before realising my limitations. The day after the lunch, Ralphie felt buoyed enough to accompany us to Denis Coffey’s fabulous watering hole on The Spit, Fisherman’s Wharf Tavern. It couldn’t get any better. Great mates, a few amber ales and one or two winning bets!

THIS Saturday night and Sunday afternoon, the NSW Commonwealth Games Boxing Selection Trials will be held at Richmond Greyhound Club. The boxers – men and women will be striving to earn berths on the national squad to compete at next winter’s Glasgow Commonwealth Games. Promoter, Jason Lewis, reports the action will be fast and furious on semi-finals night and Sunday’s finals afternoon. Cost is just $25 per session – pay your freight at the gate. And finally, don’t forget the Little Wings Twenty/20 Cricket tournament at Dukes Oval on Sunday, March 9. Little Wings is the wonderful charitable organisation which flies, free of charge, young patients and their families from remote areas of NSW to and out of Sydney for expert medical treatment. Rock up and give this worthwhile charity support. Admission is free, there’s raffles, tucker, refreshments and plenty of action out in the centre.

Nepeannews 20february2014