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Thursday, 20 October 2016



WINNERS ARE GRINNERS Local brothers and owners of The Red Cow and O’Donoghues, Mario and Tony Falcone, are celebrating the big win of their racehorse, Divine Prophet which took out the Caulfield Guineas recently. Read the full story by Conner Lowe on p13. Photo: Tom Carey

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PRESIDENT of the Lunddeham Progress Association, Wayne Willmington met with politicians in Canberra this week to discuss the future of the western Sydney airport at Badgerys Creek. With a large group of other stakeholders he met with the Minister for the Environment and Energy, Josh Frydenberg and the Minister for Urban Infrastructure, Paul Fletcher. Mr Willmington told Nepean News he was there to represent the people of Luddenham. “I was there to raise concerns about the development around the airport,” Mr Willmington said. “It is very important that we get the  Wayne Willmington with Emma Husar MP in Canberra. right type of development around Photo: Wayne Willmington the area.” “We don’t want huge vacant warehouses if it is going to be re-zoned or anything,” he said. that don’t employ anyone, we want long term It is believed the final plans for Sydney’s development around the region,” he said. second airport will be signed off and finalised According to Mr Willmington, the locals within the next few weeks. living around the proposed development sites During his trip to Canberra, Mr Willmington don’t know where they stand and they’re visited local MP for Lindsay, Emma Husar who frustrated they’re being kept out of the loop. have him a tour around Parliament House and “People are being kept on a shoestring and share a conversation with him on the airport they don’t know if they can sell their properties, development.


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Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

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4 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

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by Kerrie Davies I AM the epitome of the creature of habit - I tend to do exactly the same thing day after day. Every morning I keep hitting the snooze button on the alarm clock until Greg asks if there is a truck reversing up the driveway - and that’s when I realise I should probably get up lest I get thrown under the imaginary truck. I head straight for the kettle, scoop two teaspoons of heart-starting coffee into a cup and head to the telly to flick through the various morning shows to see what’s making news while I wait for my cup of gold to boil. Most mornings my remote control reveals a menu of doom, gloom or some Hollywood star’s latest wardrobe malfunction. While I’d prefer not to subscribe to any of them, the fashion tragedy is the least appealing so that leaves me with doom or gloom to pick from. Has anyone else noticed that these days politically all we seem to see and hear is finger-pointing, arguing and screaming? Whatever happened to politicians, although coming from differing ideal bases, at least agreeing on some things about the future of our nation? I then check out facebook, only to be greeted with a hundred status updates full of gloom or predicting doom. The finger-pointing, arguing and screaming is all over social media forums as well. Everyone is suddenly so offended by anything these days, we’ve made an art form out of it. We live in a country that has beauty beyond belief. The majority of our citizens have great hearts who like to help others. We aren’t suppressed, we are free to vote and fish or fly a kite if we please. Things could be a lot worse. Why all the doom, gloom and being constantly offended? We live in a region where our backyards are big enough to have a barbie, and if not a pool, at least run a sprinkler. We’re a hop, skip and a jump from the city without being in the middle of the rat-race. We have more affordable real estate than the rest of Sydney, good job opportunities and a medicare and welfare system for those who need it. Although there’s always room to improve, things could be a lot worse. Why all the doom and gloom? Let’s try embracing all that is good in life. We are only here once, what a wasted opportunity to spend it whingeing and whining! Your thoughts?


Protecting our heritage STUART Ayres MP, Member for Penrith has joined Penrith Councillor Tricia Hitchen to announce $24,000 in NSW Government heritage grants to protect the local heritage in Penrith and the Blue Mountains. “The NSW Government’s Heritage Grant Program is designed to help communities care for their local heritage,” Stuart Ayres said. There were four successful grants in Penrith under this year’s round of funding, namely: • $6,000 to Penrith City Council under the Local Government Heritage Advisors stream • $5,000 to Penrith City Council under the Local Heritage Places stream • $6,500 to Blue Mountains City Council under the Local Government Heritage Advisors stream • $6,500 to Blue Mountains City Council under the Local Heritage Places stream Heritage Minister Mark Speakman said 196 grants were awarded to help communities protect, value and gather more information about their local heritage. One of the four grant streams will help


Stuart Ayres

councils fund studies, run their own small grants programs and secure the services of heritage advisors. “Looking after our heritage is everyone’s responsibility and local government plays an important role in maintaining heritage at a community level,” Mr Speakman said. “The local government grants will enable councils across the state to fund their own small grants programs to encourage community action on the front line of heritage protection.” For more information about the NSW Government’s Heritage Grants, see http://www.

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Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

Mayor: Talk to the community first on prison By Kerrie Davies

PENRITH Mayor John Thain said that the NSW Department of Corrections needs to ask the Penrith community what they think about a proposed prison to house 640 maximum security inmates on the same site as the Emu Plains Correctional Centre. The Emu Plains Correctional Centre is currently a minimum security institution for females with special programs including pre-release, mothers and children, mobile outreach and circle of love, a quilt making project for hospitals and bereaved parents. The new prison will host 400 maximum security male inmates (announced last week) and 240 maximum security female inmates (announced August this year). “Minister for Correctives David Elliott made the announcement of the 400 maximum security male inmates last week without any prior notice to Council,” Mayor Thain said. “Apart from recognised flooding issues on the proposed site, I am concerned, and I encourage local residents to be, at the potential impact

Photo: Tom Carey

of a maximum security prison on the social fabric of our community. “As the State Government has had limited contact with Council on this issue I want them to take that further and to talk our community about their proposal before they come to us. “It may be unusual to do this but I want the Government to gauge the community’s appetite for this maximum security prison before they come to Council. “I don’t want the Government going to the community and giving the impression that they have consulted in any way with Council on this.” According to NSW Government News the Government approved the

Emu Plains ‘rapid build’ prison last week and a construction contract will soon be awarded. “We need to send a unified message to the State Government that this prison is not acceptable,” Mayor Thain said. Nepean News put the topic to our facebook followers to gauge their thoughts and received quite a reaction. “Secret squirrel Baird Government at it again, doing it undercover thinking no one will notice,” Mike Robson said. Sam Youdell said, “I’d only agree if they were due to be released - but not high security crims - petty crimes like traffic infringements etc. I’d prefer it

really to stay as is, but I don’t think it will happen.” Merilyn Green agreed. “I don’t want to see a maximum security jail so close to many homes. We have our share of prisoners. Put the jail somewhere else so that we all share,” she said. Leanne McMeniman however, thought the government’s plan was fair enough. “Got to put it somewhere, why not in this proposed location? Parklea is surrounded by everyday people what’s the difference, I’m sure if this gaol was here already these locals would just build around it anyway. Toughen up and get with the changes in this community,” she said.

Homelessness on main agenda By Keegan Thomson

HOMELESSNESS is set to become a big issue across western Sydney with both local members of the state government and federal opposition pushing for more infrastructure to stop the growing homeless epidemic. Stuart Ayres, state member for Penrith, will host a forum on ending homelessness across Penrith where he’ll be joined by local homelessness services, government departments and local youth services. He said homelessness is often a factor of a much bigger issue with people being driven into homelessness because of a number of different circumstances. “Homelessness doesn’t discriminate – it can happen to young people who don’t feel safe at home, to women fleeing domestic and family violence, to older people who may not be able to afford rent, and sadly it is happening in and around Penrith,” Mr Ayres said. “For too long the focus has been on providing people with assistance once they reach the point of crisis,” he added. To help prevent the growth of homelessness across Penrith and western Sydney, the state government

 Senator Doug Cameron with Emma Husar MP in Canberra. Photo: Supplied.

will bring together front line support providers to help introduce and brainstorm new preventative measures. “We need to do more and it is crucial that homelessness providers work with other local services to spot any early warning signs before someone falls into homelessness,” The member for Penrith said. Across the state on any given night there are 29,000 homeless people

living it rough, with NSW having the highest number of homeless people out of all the states and territories. In Canberra the member for Lindsay, Emma Husar has been calling on the Turnbull government to do more to curb the homeless rate across western Sydney. “The Turnbull Government’s cuts to homelessness services are increasing the likelihood of homelessness in western Sydney, and these cuts are

made worse by the NSW Baird Government closing 80 homelessness services across the state under its ‘Going Home, Staying Home’ policy,” Ms Husar said. Last week she met with Senator Doug Cameron, Shadow Minister for Housing and Homelessness, where she spoke about the homelessness issue facing western Sydney. “Malcolm Turnbull and Mike Baird must act to fix our homelessness crisis by reversing the funding cuts, reopening shelters across the region and by prioritising adequate supply of affordable housing for people on low incomes,” Ms Husar said. During the meeting, Senator Cameron criticised the government for not yet appointing a Minister of Housing and Homelessness. “No Minister for Housing and Homelessness has been appointed and no action has been taken to provide long-term funding certainty to the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness which will expire in June 2017,” Senator Cameron said. During the 2016 federal budget there was no mention of further funding given to the homelessness sector past 2017 with a number of industry bodies waring the uncertainty of their funding could hinder the fight against homelessness.

Hounds howl for Halloween THE Nepean Therapy Dogs are appealing to the public for donations so they can continue to visit western Sydney hospitals and nursing homes. The gorgeous pooches from Nepean Therapy Dogs regularly visit Blacktown, Mount Druitt and Auburn Hospital, with Westmead Hospital next on the agenda. President Nicole Celeban said October is a busy month for the dogs and their owners who attend various Halloween themed parties and celebrations. “Halloween is a special time where children wear scary masks and costumes and eats lots of lollies, so we dress the dogs in ghoulish costumes which delight and surprise children and adults. “We’re asking anyone who is planning a Halloween party to help raise money for the Nepean Therapy Dogs, who are making a difference to the health and wellbeing of people in our local communities,” she said. “We hope to raise more than $5000 this Halloween, all donations over $2 are tax deductible and all donations cover the costs of petrol, uniforms and training. “All our volunteers are unpaid staff and the dogs love meeting and getting affection from the patients, staff and

 Cavalier King Charles spaniel Floyd gets into the Halloween spirit.

visitors.” The Nepean Therapy Dogs was established in 1992 by Annemarie Schuster with her golden retriever Bella. The group regularly visits various hospital wards including rehabilitation, palliative care, dementia day care, cardiac, children’s wards, emergency and dialysis units, spreading joy among patients, visitors and staff. Nepean Therapy Dogs trainer and

president Nicole Celeban has visited Blacktown and Mount Druitt hospitals for the past 14 years. The Nepean Therapy Dog Inc. is a registered charity. To assist, register your Halloween party, office morning tea or backyard BBQ at, nominate Nepean Therapy Dogs as your charity and get your friends to donate or sponsor your activity.

Work at Union Rd begins SELECTED parts of Union Road Car Park will be closed over two weekends on 15-16 and 22-23 October to allow ground testing works to be carried out. The car park will not be affected on weekdays. “We want to minimise any disruption to car parking during this process, which is why the work is being done on weekends,” said Mayor John Thain. The work is being conducted in line with the Penrith Progression blueprint for the City Centre, he said. “We recently asked investors for bold ideas for the Union Road site (including an extra 1000 car park spaces). We are currently exploring the quality submissions received and the weekend works will assist in finalising due diligence at the site. “As a significant landowner in the City Centre, we want to use our assets to unlock Penrith’s potential.” The affected areas will be barricaded while work is conducted between 7am-4pm on Saturdays and 8am-4pm on Sundays.

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Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

Getting to know ...

Cr Tricia Hitchen Deputy Mayor with Conner Lowe

1. What was your first paid job? Thursday night / Saturday morning casual at Myer 2. What is your guilty pleasure? Magnum ice creams 3. What is your biggest fear/phobia and why? The dentist, and I’m sure everyone knows why! 4. What is your worst habit? Leaving my shoes where I kick them off. 5. Best advice you have ever been given? Push your boundaries, that’s what they are there for 6. If you only had $50 left in the bank, how would you spend it? Food for the family 7. Favourite holiday destination and why? Bali, its close, its hot and we have found a resort that is wheel chair accessible (for our son) 8. Do you have a favourite sporting team? Panthers 9. Name one reason that you love western Sydney? Its where the nicest people live 10. In three words, describe your perfect Sunday? Beach, sun, friends

Dish lickers D-Day ditched By Keegan Thomson

AFTER weeks of speculation, the Premier Mike Baird has backed down on the state government’s proposed greyhound racing ban. When the government rushed through the legislation to ban greyhound racing statewide there was backlash from all sides of politics and the community with the Nationals, the Labor Party, the greyhound racing community and members of the Liberal Party speaking out against the ban. The decision by the Premier to ban the industry from July 1, 2017 followed the report of a special commission of inquiry headed by retired judge Michael McHugh. It found up to 68,000 greyhounds had been euthanised in the past 12 years because they were deemed too slow, unable to race or they were injured during race meets. Instead of the full scale statewide ban, the Premier announced last week a slew of new measures aimed at curbing the animal cruelty issues associated with the industry. There would be a breeding cap of 2,000 dogs per year, some of the race courses across the state would be shut down, a bond of $1,500 would be introduced for every dog bred and there would be a wind down of the number of race meets across the state. Locally, there was initial concern over the

future of the Richmond race club, but sources have told us the club will remain open. Labor MP for Londonderry, Prue Car said the change of heart was a big win for the community. “Mike Baird’s back down is a huge victory for the thousands of men and women whose livelihoods depend on this industry and have always done the right thing,” Ms Car said. “Labor fought this ban because the actions of a few should not result in the Government shutting down an entire industry,” she said. Ms Car has also welcomed the new restrictions put on the industry which focus on the welfare of the animals. “No one condones animal cruelty and this is why Labor has always supported the introduction of tough regulation and harsh penalties for those who do the wrong thing,” she said.

Caped crusader

Proud family applauds student

By Aline Lyons

LOOK up in the sky! It’s a bird, it’s a plane? No - it’s Mount Druitt Hospital patient Patrick Vlatko, age three, wearing his superhero cape! Capes4Kids, an Australian charity, donated 100 superhero capes to help Mount Druitt Hospital’s sick children feel safe and brave while undergoing treatment. The capes featured characters like Superman, Batman, Spiderman, along with Disney favourites. Mount Druitt Hospital children’s ward nurse manager Mildred Villason said the capes gave children confidence and

helped them be brave while going through medical procedures. “We are so grateful for these capes; it will make such a difference to the children,” she said. “Each cape has a special message, wishing the child a speedy recovery or reminding them to be brave and stay positive during a difficult time. “The capes help takes their minds of their illnesses by magically turning them into superheros.” For more information about Capes4Kids Australia, visit: au/

SEVERAL generations of the Athum family applauded a highly successful student from Emmaus Catholic College Kemps Creek at a recent ceremony. Year 12 student Klong Athum is proud to be an Australian Citizen of South Sudanese heritage. She has completed secondary schooling at Emmaus, wearing on her uniform badges which identify the contribution she has made. Mentor, College Leader, Peer Support person, SRC member, various ministries all define Klong’s ambition and dedication to assist fellow students. These attributes were recognised by the Catholic Education Office in Parramatta when Klong was presented with the Bishop of Parramatta Award for Excellence. A testimonial to Klong was written by Emmaus teacher Mark O’Connor and delivered by Year 11 student Panache

Karise. Mentors of Klong’s family were joined by representatives of Emmaus College staff and students. The ceremony afternoon tea provided an opportunity for the Athum family to meet other award recipients and the Executive Director of the CEDP, Mr Greg Whitby who delivered an address at the ceremony. Klong now prepares to conclude her schooling with HSC, Graduation, Formal and Farewell. “These have been unforgettable wonderful years for me. The support at Emmaus is so strong and I will never forget my time here,” Klong said. Klong hopes to study medicine and possibly in some future years go to Sudan to work. She leaves Emmaus with a splendid reputation for her care and interest in assisting young students, and being an excellent role model.

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Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

New online site aims to stop child grooming By Keegan Thomson

levels of understanding there will be some differences between the adult side of the site to the children’s side of the site,” she said. Some of the child friendly educational tools she’s used include online quizzes and games, find-a-words, infographics and downloadable colourful fact sheets. “We are trying to teach people about what is grooming and how to prevent it,” she said. “We want to ask people to question themselves about things like what would you put on facebook, what would you share with someone online?” Recently Ms Ellery took her website and her proposal down to Canberra to address the Minister of Justice, Michael Keenan. “At the end of the day I would be thrilled if we could get local and greater western Sydney funding so we can collate and gather statistics,” she said. “This program needs to be trialled and rolled out on a wider level so it can get to as many people as possible.” The next step in the journey is to get further funding so the initiative and the website can be rolled out across the west. She said she would be approaching both the state government and the Penrith council for further consideration. The website will go live early next week at

CYBER CHILD grooming is on the rise across western Sydney but a local not-for-profit charity has been meeting with politicians in Canberra to help prevent this most heinous crime. Penrith based charity, Queen of Hearts Community Foundation is fighting to raise awareness of cyber grooming and helping to educate children about stranger danger on the internet. CEO and Founder of Queen of Hearts, Michele Ellery said the issue of cyber child grooming is fairly new but it is on the rise. “It is really important to teach children and adults about the dangers that lurk online and hopefully we can prevent child cyber grooming and we can also help to point out the warning signs,” Ms Ellery said. According to her research online child grooming has spiked 1000 per cent since 2008, but even with these startling numbers, Ms Ellery found there wasn’t enough being done to educate children around the ages of 10. Working with Western Sydney University she has made an interactive website which aims at educating children, parents and teachers about the dangers of cyber child grooming. “Because of age appropriateness and

 One of the downloadable posters aimed at curbing cyber grooming. Photo: Supplied.



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The not so spooky origins of Halloween By Keegan Thomson

EVERY year I hear the same smug remarks about Halloween. “I don’t celebrate Halloween because it’s SO American!” or “we live in Australia so why do people celebrate Halloween?” Much to the surprise of all those haters out there, Halloween has a more medieval, religious and European history, with the Americanisation of Halloween only coming about within the last 100 years or so. The version of Halloween we all celebrate today, by gorging ourselves silly on chocolate and lollies and dressing up in frightening zombie outfits, is a popular left over of more than 2000 years of cultural and historical mixing. One of the earliest origins of Halloween comes from the 2000 year old Celtic festival of Samhain, when people would light huge bonfires, share epic feasts and dress up as saints, devils and angels to ward off the ghosts of the dead. The festival of Samhain was a pagan celebration to mark the end of the harvest season and the beginning of the long, dark winter. The Celts

often associated winter with death, so a festival to ward off any unwanted ghouls and ghosts was a highly superstitious and spiritual matter. By 43 AD the Roman Catholic Empire had conquered all the Celtic lands of modern day Ireland, the UK and Northern France. Once the Romans had this new territory they then started installing their own festivals around the traditional Celtic ones including Samhain. Across the next thousand years there was a slew of festivities and celebrations named in honour of the deceased, the martyred and the saints. Pope Gregory III marked November 1 as All Martyrs Day, a

day which included bonfires, feasting and prayers, to include the traditional Celtic festival. Around 1000 AD the Roman Empire wanted to irradiate all festivals which weren’t sacred and churchsanctioned so they created All Saints Day, on November 2 which replaced the Samhain festival. Traditional elements of the former festivals merged with All Saints Day, or as it was known throughout England Alholowmesse, but the Celts rebelled and wanted to keep their own day of celebration so October 31 was named All-hallows Eve, which later translated into Halloween. Across England, at this point of

time, there was a wide sweeping famine which discriminated against the poorer classes. On Halloween, the last day of harvest, the poor would quite often beg for scraps, left overs and any excess produce from the harvest. This is considered one of the earliest incarnations of trick or treating. In 1607, as English colonisation pushed its way into North America, all the traditions of European life made its way across the Atlantic and to the New World. Religious differences separated where Halloween could be celebrated with the staunch beliefs of the Protestants outlawing the festivities. America became flooded with new immigrants as the 1846 Potato Famine took hold in Ireland, and with this wave of new settlers came a new wave of traditional Celtic cultures. As the Irish moved across North America they popularised the form of Halloween that we see today with parades, plays, costumes, trick or treating and parties. Next time someone criticises you and yours for celebrating the very traditional, ancient and multicultural festivities of Halloween be proud like the Celts and rebel, because if you don’t take pride in your celebrations someone will try to turn it into something else.

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Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

Opinion - The Rise of Prue Car How Ms Car Transitioned from Penrith Councillor to a NSW Shadow Minister in One Year By Garion Thain

PRUE Car is the Member for Londonderry in the Parliament of New South Wales. Winning the seat in March 2015 with a 14% swing to the ALP, she was lauded by the likes of Opposition Leader Luke Foley for retaking the prized seat from the coalition, who held the seat that was thought to many before as a safe Labor one. In a matter of weeks Ms Car was awarded a role as a parliamentary secretary, but less than 12 months later took to the front bench, earning the titles of Shadow Minister for Skills and Shadow Assistant Minister for Education. Since the aforementioned state election, Ms Car has become one of Greater Western Sydney’s most influential Labor figures at this time of writing, her clout making her opinion sought in federal and local Penrith Labor affairs, lending help and involvement in the 2016 local government elections, her friend and protégé Aaron Duke earning a spot on Penrith Council in a convincing ALP swing in early September. Such a successful path may seem peculiarly swift, although Ms Car has been involved with the party for well over a decade, and having interviewed Ms Car several times in the past two years, the reality is that the last year is in fact more of a culmination, the eruption of a firecracker with a long fuse, as opposed to a sudden step into the limelight – it is no surprise Ms Car is becoming this noteworthy. Ms Car was first elected to Penrith Council in 2008, swiftly becoming an advocate for the city in state government affairs, in particular leading Penrith Council’s opposition to the transference of radioactive waste from Hunters Hill. Her positive reputation in the community meant that her time on council was largely successful, and she was able to capitalise on this in order to begin a

Photo: Tom Carey

campaign for the seat of Londonderry. The 2013 Federal Election was disastrous for Labor in Penrith, particularly considering that the seat of Lindsay, held by Assistant Treasurer David Bradbury, was won by the Liberal Party. With the seat of Londonderry also held by a Liberal, Ms Car began advocating in Local branches that community trust needs to be rebuilt early to gain good faith for the 2015 state election. She nominated herself for preselection for the seat of Londonderry, and won unopposed. From this point until election day, Ms Car campaigned relentlessly, doorknocking almost weekly. When asked in January 2015 what she offered the residents of Londonderry during a shopping centre visit with Luke Foley, Ms Car rated her experience as paramount and pitched herself as sincere. “This is a vibrant region of Sydney and we deserve a government that is focused on improving the work-

life balance of our residents,” she commented. Ms Car made herself present at several high profile funding announcements prior to the election, particularly with Luke Foley in proposing funding to Nepean Hospital, and dedicated time to new housing developments like Jordan Springs, where she campaigned for a school. “What I’m trying to do now is galvanise the Jordan Springs community,” Ms Car said on her doorknocking. Doorknocking proved to be one of Ms Car’s most effective tools. With a devoted team of Young Labor volunteers behind her, she was able to effectively knock out entire suburbs in one weekend. Her volunteers were the first people she thanked on election night. “There’s no way that any one team can door knock 20 000 homes and make 35 000 calls to residents in the community without the great team

behind me,” she said. “They have done an amazing amount of work, all voluntary, over 499 days.” The reason Ms Car is becoming such a prominent figure also comes from what followed. She continued, saying “My job is to now hold Mike Baird to account on the commitments that I have been elected to deliver,” she continued. “I intend to be a strong voice for the Western suburbs in the state parliament starting from now and I will be holding Mike Baird to those commitments starting tomorrow.” Whatever your side of politics, there is no questioning that Ms Car has lived up to her reputation of being proactive and has been a vocal State MP. Already becoming a prominent dissenter to changes to Tafe, and as mentioned prior having a spot in the shadow cabinet, indeed Ms Car’s Rise has been fast, but to those watching, comes as no surprise.

Teen charged over fire

Listen to our very own Keegan Thomson with News Hour Monday mornings from 9am to 10am

POLICE have charged a teenager following an investigation into a fire in Penrith earlier this month. About 7.50pm on Sunday 2 October 2016, emergency services were called to a scrub fire at a reserve on Hickeys Lane. Officers from the Rural Fire Service and Fire & Rescue NSW attended, however the blaze had spread to nearby streets. The fire was extinguished about an hour later; police have received no reports of injury.

Officers from Penrith Local Area Command commenced investigations into the incident, and about 1.15pm on Wednesday 12 October 2016 investigators arrested a 17-year-old boy at Penrith Police Station. He was charged with intentionally cause fire and be reckless as to its spread. The teen was granted conditional bail and will appear in a Children’s Court on Tuesday 1 November 2016.

A divine year for a young horse By Conner Lowe

LOCAL businessmen Tony and Mario Falcone, owners of The Red Cow and O’Donoghues Irish Pub are living every racehorse owner’s dream in their very own colt Divine Prophet. Divine Prophet is a horse to be loved if you don’t mind a bet, or feared if you have a horse racing against it. The colt is only three years old and already has won titles at Kembla Grange and its most pivotal win the Caulfield Guineas. The Falcone brothers have been around horses for over 30 years and developed a strong passion for horse racing. The first horse the brothers bought outright was Divine Prophet’s mother Prophet Jewel and since then the Falcone brothers haven’t looked back. “After years of shares and syndications, one thing led to another and Mario and myself decided it was time to own a horse outright, we decided it was best and to try and have a go on our own and we are still racing on our own,” Tony said. Tony and Mario also breed their

Photo: Tom Carey

own horses, which is fairly rare in the industry. “The majority of people buy their horses from sales, where Mario and myself have decided to breed and raise our horses. Although this is not common throughout horse racing we decided to have a challenge and enjoy the experience,” Tony said. “It was a learning curve for us and we love the horse industry and the partnerships with other people. We were lucky enough to find Prophet Jewel the right stallion and she produced an outstanding group one race horse,” Mario added.

Although with the success of Divine Prophet in his first year of competitive racing, Tony and Mario decided to not race him in the famous Cox Plate. “With the help of the trainers we decided it was not the right race for Divine Prophet to race in. We felt that he was just too young and not mature enough to handle a race of that size,” Mario said. “With young horses you have to take it with every step, you want him to go on and win every race he enters, but at the moment we all felt that the best decision for Divine Prophet was

to rest him for the rest of the year and get him prepared for his races next year,” Tony added. Mario and Tony added that at the moment they are enjoying the glory because horse racing is not a cheap road for any owner. “We don’t plan to stop racing horses anytime soon and are enjoying the wins as both Tony and myself have invested and spent a lot of money,” Mario said. “It’s a very costly sport, so winning money along the way can really help us continue to race our horses,” Tony added.

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Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

A day in the life of a... Social advocate By Keegan Thomson

WORKING as a social advocate is something of a thankless job that involves a lot of self sacrifice. Michele Ellery is the founder and CEO of western Sydney family and women’s charity Queen of Hearts Community Foundation, and she says the job involved a very personable and active lifestyle. “I’ll be up before 7:00 and checking emails, I’ll check social media and update my social accounts, drop my daughter off at school and before 8:30 I’ll be in the office,” she said. “When I’m at the office that is when the busy stuff happens.” Queen of Hearts Community Foundation works across western Sydney to help victims of family and domestic violence get to a safe place, whether that be through counselling, sharing a cup of tea or simply having a chat. One of the first and most important things Ms Ellery will do across a day is return phone calls and catch up with clients. “That takes up the bulk of my morning,” she said. “I have a chat with people, make sure they’re doing alright, and quite often while I’m making calls I’ll receive more calls, so you have to follow up with those ones too.” In the office Ms Ellery works with two other paid employees and a small army of volunteers, but sometimes her work takes her away from the office

and to people who are in need. “Last week I had an emergency call out to a woman who was sleeping in the carpark at Panthers,” Ms Ellery said. “She had been sleeping there for a while and it turns out she was in the middle of a domestic violence situation. I had to go out and talk to her and bring her something to eat and drink.” “Part of this job is going to the people and that can involve working into the night or going out to see homeless people in appalling conditions,” she added. According to Ms Ellery the best part of her job is going out and meeting with clients and the community. “Meeting with people, helping people and clients, they’re the best parts of my job. It is a massive win for me when I come back and I know I’ve just helped someone or made an impact,” she said. One of the challenges she faces every day in her job is the constant fight for funding. “We struggle sometimes to secure funding,” she said. “Every day I’m out there meeting people to arrange funding or meeting with people over lunch, I’m not able to get out and help the community.” “If it were up to me I’d be in the schools every week talking to kids to help with prevention and I’d be out meeting with survivors, because that is where the real work has to be done,” she added. You can read more about some of Michele Ellery and the Queen of Hearts Community Foundations work on page 10.

Digital wave hits western Sydney By Keegan Thomson

LOCAL MP for Chifley, Ed Husic has been spruiking the possibility of new digitally focused jobs for the people of western Sydney after he was promoted into the position of Shadow Minister for the Digital Economy. Taking on Facebook, the new Shadow Minister welcomed the new wave of digital infrastructure, saying he wants to focus on the future of employment and work in his new position. “It’s terrific to have the opportunity to serve as the Shadow Minister for the Digital Economy - with the additional responsibility of focusing of the future of work in Australia,” Mr Husic said. “I’m extremely grateful that Bill Shorten’s added these roles to my existing responsibilities, they are areas I’ve had a deep interest in for many years,” he added. The MP broke the news of his promotion to his nearly 23,000 Facebook followers, so it is no wonder why he has been promoted into a position which encompasses the social network. According to Mr Husic our digital economy is currently worth around $79 billion with it expected to balloon up to $139 billion by 2020, though he warns of the impacts that will come

with the growth of the sector. “While that will provide huge opportunities for businesses to grow and provide work, automation and technological change will have a massive impact on the quantity and quality of jobs,” Mr Husic said. “Anywhere between 10 and 40 per cent of jobs could be replaced by technology and automation in coming years,” he warned.

He said if the government, the opposition and the country can work towards this digital transition then there will be more high paying and secure jobs for all. This digital wave has even hit schools across western Sydney after the government opened applications for new digital literacy programs for schools who want to help students engage with technology in

constructive and innovative ways. The 2016 Digital Literacy School Grants program is looking for school projects which aim to demonstrate new and innovative methods for teaching students how to use and understand digital technology. Liberal spokesperson and NSW Senator, Marise Payne said projects like these are important for school children across western Sydney. “It is important all children across western Sydney have the skills to use digital technology to ensure they are prepared for the jobs of the future,” Senator Payne said. “By encouraging digital literacy from an early age I hope that we can increase the interest amongst our students in subjects like science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and encourage a lifelong engagement in the subjects,” she added. The local university sector has even seen a wave of digital change with the Western Sydney University jumping onto the digital band wagon in 2013 by offering each new student an iPad, laptop computer or tablet. They said the incentive would help bridge the digital divide across western Sydney, and would help give students the necessary skills they’d need when entering a digitally focused workforce.

Get your bucket brigade ready for McHappy Day THIS year Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) is celebrating its 25th Anniversary of McHappy Day and inviting Nepean community groups to show their support. Getting together to form a ‘Bucket Brigade’ will help the charity raise a record breaking $3.8 million for seriously ill children and their families across Australia. Taking place on Saturday 12th November, McHappy Day will once again bring the community together for a fun family day out, while raising much needed funds for RMHC’s essential programs and services which have so far helped over 120,000 Australian families. Local community groups including businesses, dance groups, the fire brigade and ambulance services are encouraged to get involved and support seriously ill children and their families by volunteering their time to help collect donations in fundraising buckets at their local McDonald’s restaurant on McHappy Day. Ronald McDonald Houses are attached to major women’s or children’s hospitals and provide accommodation for families with a seriously ill child while they are receiving treatment. Raising funds on McHappy Day will help even more families stay close together at one of the toughest times in their lives and continue to provide families with a home away from home. “The power of family closeness is a driving factor in the work of RMHC, with families telling us that their ability to stay together during their child’s treatment has a positive effect on both their child’s psychological wellbeing and on the pace of recovery,” said Ian Garton from the Garton

Group, who own many restaurants in the Nepean area including McDonald’s Penrith Leagues, Penrith High St, Werrington, Glenmore Park, Penrith Westfield and St Marys Village. Since 1981 the Ronald McDonald Houses have collectively housed over 2.97 million nightly guests and this number is set to grow as the demand from families continues to increase. “Bucket Brigades are a simple and fun way for people in the Nepean community to get involved and help us reach our target of $3.8 million this year, which equates to providing over 28,000 nights’ accommodation for Australian families at

one of the 16 Ronald McDonald Houses across Australia,” added Ian. “McDonald’s and its local franchisees provide major support to the charity’s operations so that your donation helps even more families of seriously ill children in Australia”. A number of Australian celebrities will be doing their bit for McHappy Day to help raise awareness and funds across Australia. Why not help make a difference and join them? To form a ‘Bucket Brigade’ or get involved, please contact Matthew Atkins from McDonald’s Garton Group on

15 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

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16 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186


AHHHH yes the wonderful world of the Kardashians. Unless you have been living under a rock we all know that Kimmy K, or Ki Ki as her 750 body guards (that didn’t happen to be on duty the night of the robbery) call her, was allegedly robbed at gunpoint whilst in Gay Paree. No amount of selfies, duck faces, half exposed nipples or a bun from hell can even stop a self-proclaimed “Smart Business Woman” from being robbed. Allegedly! As I hear you all groan and start stabbing yourself with a fork to the numb the pain, thinking, please God not another story on the K Klan, yes folks here it is, bigger than a shiner and bigger than Ben Hur. (Was Ben fat? Never met him) Now I am no rocket scientist or brain surgeon, however, I am not

stupid enough to go onto social media and flash a 5 million dollar ring and say “ Luk whut mie biofriend got meeeee” panting breathlessly, with a baby laugh and duck face to finish it off. Then, yes folks, don’t friggn sit down, this story is now raising the hairs on my arms, Queen KK gets on social and flashes a handbag worth over $200,000 and then tells 600 million people she’s in Paris. Why she didn’t just cut 600,000 keys to the room with a neon sign flashing ”knock yourselves out, bargains galore” I will never know. Whoever said “if you’ve got it flaunt it” should be slapped and pushed back kicking and screaming through the sliding glass doors of ALDI, because that’s a hell NO. Can I tell you, if you are going to

With Gina Field, Nepean Regional Security

travel and stay in a hotel, try not to take 14 million dollars of jewellery with you, just like Miss KK did. So, my beloved and avid readers, have we learnt something from all of this? Well? Besides not to duck face on social media or the vet may stick a thermometer in it? Not to flash da cash, and fling da bling on social media. Travel light, do you really need all the crap on you whilst laying around the pool looking like a beached whale? I mean, glamourous and gorgeous for all to see? No. See this is where people go very wrong. They plan the trip, but don’t necessarily plan the trip from a security perspective. Think about your trips and the security of them. It all starts as a timeline type of thing, right from planning at home

(home security) right through to your trip. Do you have insurance, have you secured your items at home and on holiday in your hotel room, did you carry cash, do you have a back-up plan if your wallet and savings are all stolen on holiday and what security measure do you have in place? Do you have a spare credit card; can you access funds from overseas? Can you imagine losing everything whilst oversea? Remember the Bee Gees song, “Tragedy” ? If you don’t you’ll soon know it because that is all that you will be hear’n. So there you have it! Just remember to perfect the duck pout, get those holiday happy snappies ready with as many self -absorbed selfies as you can get and no Kardashians were injured during the writing of this column.


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Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186



BEAUTIFUL BALI, INDONESIA  You can order a feast for less than th price of entree in Sydney

 The unspoiled beauty of Lembongan Island

By Kerrie Davies

ONE of my favourite destinations in the world - and definitely one of the cheapest - is the magical island paradise of Bali. Just a six-hour jaunt from Sydney, Bali is an easy destination to get to and the weather is warm all year round. It’s the kind of place where you can relax and do just about nothing, or spend a full week sight-seeing and partying and still not get to see and do all that is on offer. Most flights from Sydney land in Denpasar airport late at night, so unless you’re prepared to do a fair bit of latenight driving as soon as you get off the plane, it is best to at least spend your first night in Kuta or its surrounds. Kuta is very busy and the traffic is pretty full-on throughout the day and well into the night. The main drag, Legion Street is the hub of nightclub and bar activity, and, if you’re in the party mood you’ll be sure to enjoy a pub crawl down this incredible street. Bars offer everything from doofdoof to live bands to karaoke. Food is also available from an array of restaurants right through to the early hours of the morning.

Nearby Seminyak is a bit more upmarket from Kuta and provides travelers with slightly less hustle and bustle than Kuta. It also tends to have a 30-plus travel clientele. The towns of Sanur and Nusa Dua are where those who are looking for a resort holiday should head. These properties are among the best in the world, however the Balinese culture is not as evident and accessible as staying ‘downtown.’ If you’re looking to escape the hustle and bustle yet still get a healthy dose of local culture, I’d thoroughly recommend jumping on a ‘fastboat’ from Sanur and spending a few nights on the islands of Lembongan, Gili or Lombok. Lembongan is one of the most amazing places I’ve ever visited. It was first recommended to me by a friend, and to be honest when we first hopped off the boat on our first threenight visit there, I was calculating when the next boat back to Bali would be as I planned to be on it. Carrying our suitcases on top of our heads through waist-deep water due to there being no wharf, then being herded on to the back of a truck by non-English speaking Indonesians and seeing just how primitive people on the island

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live, I actually thought my friend had played a joke on us. But once we arrived to our accommodation, (Bay Shore Huts - absolute paradise!) settled in our gorgeous traditional Balinese hut and went to explore the primitive island, I instantly fell in love with the beauty and innocence of it. We’ve since been back five times in three years! There’s lots to see and do; beautiful beaches, great bars and restaurants, water sports, great surfing, diving and snorkeling and there’s even a zip line. There is much less traffic for those game enough to ride a moped, and if not there’s always the option of golf cart hire, flagging an outrigger driver (boat) to take you around the island by water, or simply setting off on foot. On the mainland of Bali there’s loads to do; visit the temples, Bali Zoo, Monkey Forests, jet-skiing, fishing, mountain bike riding, shop until you drop and much, much more. Although normal, sensible personal caution needs to be taken - as it should be in any country - Bali is a much safer destination than the shockvalue programs on tv would have you believe.

BUDGET airfares to Bali pop up all year round. I’ve found the biggest bargains come via Jetstar, where return airfares can be obtained from as little as $350 - $400 per person. Accommodation costs will depend on the budget: a room in most of the high-end resorts will cost approximately $250 per night. That might sound expensive, but have you priced hotels in Sydney lately? A shared cost in a swanky villa housing 6, 8 or even 10 friends can be obtained for under $100 per person per night. A decent, clean hotel with a pool, a bar and breakfast can be nabbed for around $60 per night. If you’re on a shoestring budget and are happy to ‘slum’ it a bit, homestay-style accommodation is available on Lembongan for under $10 a night.

THE HIP SIDE TEMPERATURES are a lovely 2530 degrees during our winter, and soar to sweltering temps during our summer months. Meals in a decent sit-down-andbe-served restaurant are available for under $10. The Balinese people are eager to please and the word ‘no’ is not common in their vocabulary. Almost any request within reason will be accommodated, even if it is outside what they normally offer. There is a ‘relaxing’ of rules which can be quite attractive to Australians wanting a break from the legislation of just about everything that we have here. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, something will always surprise you in Bali!

THE FLIP SIDE Although with each trip I see more and more families with babies and young children visiting Bali,it can be a challenging place to take very small children. It is probably more ideal for children who are eight and over. Indonesia does not have health regulations to any kind of standard that would be acceptable here. While most restaurants are clean and have lovely food, you do need to use your judgment with some eateries, especially street-side carts or cafes in out-of-town areas. While many rules with regards to alcohol, smoking and traveling around without helmets or seat belts are either relaxed or nonexistent, some laws in Indonesia are quite harsh in comparison to ours. It pays to familiarise yourself with the laws of the land and ensure you don’t break them - the penalties can be quite devastating and being Australian will not be a valid defence against prosecution - nor even come into the equation.

Down N’ Out opens in Penrith this weekend! By Kerrie Davies

IF you’ve spent any time in Sydney CBD lately you’ve probably experienced one of the amazing burgers at Down N’ Out, located near Town Hall. And if you haven’t tried one, you’ve probably heard about them from those who have. Down N’ Out is such a popular eating spot in the city that people travel ridiculously long distances just to get one. Owner Ben Kagan was noticing that a lot of his customers were making the trek into town from western Sydney, and that’s when the idea of opening a branch in Penrith was born. Down N’ Out have a strong focus on burgers. And it doesn’t matter what your fave ingredients are, chances are Down N’ Out have the burger for you, whether it be beef, chicken or vegetarian. “While our burgers are classic American-style, we love to experiment and put a bit of creative spin on it,” Ben said. As well as having the phenomenally popular CBD restaurant, Down N’ Out have appeared as a pop-up restaurant at many events over the

last two years, including the sold-out Burgapalooza festival. Opening its doors in High Street Penrith this coming Friday, locals will be able to alleviate their gourmet burger craving without having to drive too far away from home. From Tuesdays through to Sundays,

Down N’ Out will be welcoming hungry burger-eaters for lunch and for dinner, and you can dine in or takeaway. They are also licensed, so you can wash your scrumptious meal down with an order from the bar. One of the first things I plan to try is the “spiked milkshake” - yes

you guessed it - this is a milkshake designed for the over 18’s, sounds intriguing doesn’t it? So whatever your plans are this weekend and beyond, be sure to fit in a visit to our very own local Down N’ Out, which will open at 562 High Street Penrith on Friday October 21.

19 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

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Legends of the Nepean By Garion Thain

CAPTAIN The Honourbale Peter Collins AM, RFD, QC, RANR has, by his own admission, not been a denizen of the Nepean area for an exceedingly long time. The Werrington resident, a self-described “newbie,” bought his home with his wife Jennine in 2012, and together have lovingly restored

 Mr Collins has penned an autobiography, ‘The Bear Pit’ as well as ‘Strike Swiftly - The Australian Commando Story’ which details the history of the Commando service in Australia and what it spawned.

their home to its current standing. I’ll elaborate soon, but first I would like to clarify that despite being a new Legend of the Nepean, Mr Collins is, sincerely, undoubtedly, a legend nonetheless – one who actually has had ties in one way or another with the region long before he lived here. Mr Collins, a Member of the Order of Australia, is a Centenary Medal recipient, retired Captain in the Royal Australian Naval Reserve in addition to former Officer in the Australian Army Reserve, saw active duty in Iraq, spent time as an ABC Journalist and a Barrister and was the NSW Opposition leader from 1995-1998, as well as a minister in the previous government. I have just spent 50 words relaying not even all of Mr Collins’ career and it is indeed astounding. Of course, there is an important link to the Nepean region there that Mr Collins is very passionate about, however first I’ll clarify his current link to the area, that being the home that Peter and Jennine have restored – Werrington House in Werrington. The sandstone house, convict-built between 1829-1832 by Robert Copland Lethbridge and his wife Mary (nee King), still sits on the five acres that remains of King’s

Grant from the early Colonial area. The unique, spacious property and house is unique in not only its age but the likelihood of it being one of the only private residences of its type left in Australia. With a deeply rooted interest in Australian colonial history and the importance of preserving said history, Peter and Jennine have restored and taken great care of the property, as well as establishing a Gallery and Museum that Mr Collins showed me in person to my humble astonishment. I met with Mr Collins twice last week, in Penrith and at Werrington House, to discuss Penrith’s development, Nepean Hospital and the importance of preserving Nepean history. “Penrith is on the cusp of a whole new era,” said Mr Collins, “and I think the community and Penrith city council are very aware of that. “When I was a Minister from ’88-’95, the conversation was about Parramatta. Now, Penrith. “As Health Minister I moved the children’s hospital from Camperdown to Westmead, which is one of my greatest achievements.” “I recognised the importance of the West and knew it was growing. “People in Greater Western Sydney

and the Blue Mountains needed a provider of tertiary medical training, so I made Nepean Hospital a teaching hospital.” Mr Collins found it disturbing when he moved to Penrith that Nepean Hospital’s facilities were lacking, over two decades later. “It surprises me and worries me, that Nepean Hospital still looks how I first saw it. It is critical that it be funded and resourced as a teaching hospital,” said Mr Collins. “It’s crunch time, it needs a major cash injection. All eyes are on Penrith, and we’re going to see a change in the next five years. This opportunity needs to be grabbed now.” Mr Collins has been familiar with Penrith’s old buildings and heritage since he was a child, visiting his closest uncle who ran Penrith Steering Service. “I remember when [Penrith] was a separate place,” he said, saying that Penrith still feels like a country town in the city’s outer reaches. Now a resident, Mr Collins has kept well versed of Penrith history, and at Werrington House commented on various facets of the property’s history, its previous owners and even the significance of the Bunya Pines planted


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PETER COLLINS around the property, the oldest over 100 years old and visible for kilometres. The tree would have served as a visual landmark for travellers. Many more have since been planted around the property by subsequent owners. Mr Collins says that despite being in suburban Sydney, the house retains its colonial feeling as it has been able to retain its context over the passage of time. “Other surviving houses often become sub-divided and sub-divided until they are fenced in. They become trivialised, the context and grandeur gone,” he said. “Living in Werrington House is a unique experience. It has captured us far more than we ever imagined it could,” he continued. “In suburban Werrington, less than an hour from an amazing global city, we found something deeply rooted in Australian history.” All of this was discussed in Mr Collins’ personal jewel so to speak, the Garrison, a building that from the outside is meant to look like a secondary agricultural building, paying homage to the ‘main act’ that is Werrington House itself. On the inside however is a private gallery, an

exhibition Mr Collins has carefully curated which includes military memorabilia from Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom, political memorabilia, in particular in honour of his political inspiration, John F. Kennedy, who shared Mr Collins’ strong military interest, and a literature collection of over 3000 books, covering aforementioned topics and the likes of automotive history and racing. Mr Collins always had an interest in exhibitions of this nature, serving as the coalition’s longest Arts Minister. “I have culled [the collection] very vigorously and systematically,” said Mr Collins. “I’m hands on, I like doing things myself. “I like pulling together objects with photographs,” he mentioned during the tour, showing the careful placement and transitions of items, including scale models and real-life artefacts. Mr Collins hopes to share the Garrison publicly in some capacity in the near future, and the experience was nothing short of fascinating. The Garrison itself is not where the memorabilia stops, as a handsome Ferret Scout car sat just outside the window.


 The Garrison is a carefully curated collection of various memorabilia from a variety of sources. The building’s agricultural, barn-like appearance from the outside pays homage to Werrington House itself.

One thing to say about Mr Collins after two meetings and a discussion about Werrington House is that he is a man sincere in his many passions and a genuine pleasure to talk to. He and Jennine have great pride in Werrington House and have looked after it lovingly, and it was great even just being able to dip into this history through them for a short time. Sometimes we may forget

how deep the Nepean region sits in colonial history, but examples such as Werrington House are a lively reminder of the past that surrounds us.

Peter Collins was nominated as a Legend of the Nepean by Kerrie Davies. If you know a local legend, send us a nomination at


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Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

What you might not know about your new ferret


Veterinary REPORT

with Dr Antony Karolis and the team at WellPet Vets phone 1300 WELLPET

Senior Veterinarian and CEO WellPets Vets Mountains, Nepean and St Clair

MOST first time ferret owners spend lots of time researching how to make a perfect home environment, and diet plan for their new furry friend. However, most new ferret owners are unaware that they can be putting their new favorite family member in life threatening danger by not managing their reproductive hormones. Ferrets have a mating season (this is usually the spring and summer months), and very different hormonal regulation than other pets. Therefore, the importance of managing their hormones and the de-sexing procedure itself is very different from what you may expect. Female ferrets will remain in season or ‘oestrus’ for long periods if they are not mated. If a female ferret is not mated when it is in season, oestrogen can reach toxic levels in the blood stream. Excessive oestrogen can cause oestrogen toxicoses and aplastic anaemia, which can be fatal. Most desexed female ferrets will develop this condition unless they are mated every time they come into heat, which can be twice a season. Therefore, unless you are a breeder and plan on mating your new female ferret, it would be best to speak to your vet about what can be done to help regulate her

hormones and protect your ferret from this life threatening condition. For male ferrets, not managing your male ferret’s hormones or leaving your ferret entire comes with far fewer serious side effects than your female ferret. De-sexing or sterilizing your male ferret however will reduce their pungent older and aggressive behaviour that can make them very difficult to live with when they are in season and is still recommended. Yes, male ferrets come into season too. So how can we manage our ferrets hormones, especially for the female ferrets? We recommend as our first choice is chemical sterilsation by means of an implant every 16 months to manage your ferret’s hormones. Traditional surgical de-sexing is an alternative. It is a cheaper option and

can be performed at 6 months of age. If you decide to surgically desex your ferret you must be aware that ferret sex hormones help regulate other hormones made in a part of the body called the adrenal glands. When we remove the ovaries or testicles in the de-sexing procedure, we remove the ferret’s natural regulation system for the adrenal glands. If the adrenal glands are left unregulated, they usually start to over-work and become cancerous after the de-sexing procedure. Adrenal gland cancer causes significant hair loss, muscle loss, weakness, and very poor quality of life. Don’t despair though! There are treatment options for this condition available after de-sexing if your ferret begins to show signs of this adrenal disease or to help prevent your new furry friend from developing this cancer. Please don’t hesitate to call us at WellPet Vets so we can discuss the details of the hormone implant and other options available to you for managing your new ferret’s hormones. We offer free kit/kitten health checks and our vets are thoroughly versed in ferret reproductive health. We are happy to help answer all of your questions about your new ferret! Ph: 1300WELLPET.


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Nepean News 18 October 2012 Issue 85 | 25

E N T E R T A I N M E N T TUESDAY 25 OCTOBER JORDAN SPRINGS Lakeside Parade, Jordan Springs Town Centre 10am-12pm TUESDAY 25 OCTOBER COLYTON Rooby Roo story time Neighbourhood Centre, Corner of Jensen and Willoughby Streets, Colyton 9.30-11.30am  They’ll be plenty of things to see-and-do during Children’s Week.

PARENTS and kids are invited to come and celebrate Children’s Week with a series of free and fun events throughout the city between 25-28 October. Council’s Children’s Services will celebrate Children’s Week by running a variety of activities at Thornton, Jordan Springs, Colyton, North St Marys and Penrith. Activities will vary at each event with animal farms, Rooby Roo, a mobile playvan, a putt putt golf plus community information stands and more. There will also be daily book give-aways. For more information please call 4732 7844 or 0419 976 917.

WEDNESDAY 26 OCTOBER PENRITH The Mondo – The grass area in front of Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre. If raining, event will be held in library 10am-1pm THURSDAY 27 OCTOBER NORTH ST MARYS Neighbourhood Centre, Debrincat Ave 9.30-11.30am FRIDAY 28 OCTOBER THORNTON ESTATE Bring a picnic to enjoy Smith Paddock, Sydney Smith Drive 5.30-7.30pm Join us for some fun activities: • Animal Farm • Rooby Roo • Mobile Playvan • Ball Pit • Putt putt golf • Community information stalls Activities may vary across locations.

When Dad married Fury WATCH out, because here comes the bride…the bride that features in David Williamson’s play, When Dad Married Fury that will presented by The Henry Lawson Theatre opening on October 21. Two brothers arrive at Sydney airport to visit their recently widowed father, who is turning 70. The old man has been in America where he was a successful “business man”. Just how successful, is revealed slowly, with one surprise after another. The ‘Old Man’ is worth $100 million for a start and has gotten himself married….to a woman half his age. Audiences will be entertained by David Williamson’s trademark wit and skilful blending of contemporary culture within the ageless framework of family greed, jealousy, love and expectation. The seven skilled local actors will sweep audiences into the contemporary Australia’ that is the setting for this play. They will reveal issues such as the effects of the Global Financial Crisis and the human face of it. They will deliver the masterful dialogue that was created for each character and audiences will hear expressions and language that you hear everywhere around you. Once again our leading playwright, David Williamson delivers another gripping play and his most memorable characters to date. One thing is for certain: everything changed when Dad married Fury. The play that this has been written about:


“Humorous one liners and comic scenes of greedy people in battle for their inheritance. It is pacey and entertaining and has some very funny moments.” – Stage Milk “If you want a good giggle you need to see this show. The dialogue is so strong it carries the play. It is fairly fast moving and very entertaining.” – Whats On Sydney David Williamson’s When Dad Married Fury will be presented at The Henry Lawson Theatre opening 21 October. The next performance will be a matinee on Sunday 23 October at 2:00pm. Followed by performances on Friday 28 October, Saturday 29 October, Friday 4 November, Saturday 5 November and a matinee on Sunday 6 November. The last chance to see it will be on Friday 11 November 2016. Please see www.hltheatre for full details about prices and bookings on line. Or ring 02 47 29 2996 to book. All are invited to another great production at The Henry Lawson Theatre.

Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

Celebrate Children’s Week


We promote the responsible service of gaming & alcohol.

FOR the first time this October Treehouse Theatre brings to The Joan their new season of Suitcase Stories – True-Life Experiences Of The Refugee Journey. Coming from countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Iran, Bhutan and South Sudan, Suitcase cast members are survivors of world events we witness daily on the evening news. This is a great opportunity to experience first-hand a roller coaster ride of tears, laughter and complete admiration as these amazing young people perform their own stories of escape, survival and eventual triumph

through a powerful fusion of spoken word, movement, sound, light and projected imagery. The Suitcase Stories cast and their heartbreaking and poignant stories will make you smile, cry, laugh out loud and leave you feeling inspired. Not to be missed, book your tickets now and secure your seats. Tickets: Adult $25*, Concession $20*, Matinee all tickets $18* Thursday, Oct 27 - 10am, 12.30pm and Friday, Oct 28 - 10am, 12:30pm, 7:00pm * A transaction fee may apply

29 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

E N T E R T A I N M E N T Suitcase Stories



By Keegan Thomson

TWO talented Penrith locals are lending their musical skills to a brand new production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicoloured Dream Coat. Brittanie Shipway and Matthew Herne, both western Sydney born and bred, are working together on the exciting new production, with Ms Shipway taking up the role of director and Mr Herne leading the orchestra as musical director. Brittanie Shipway, a singer and performer in her own right, has taken up the role of directing after being the star of many musicals and stage shows. She said making the move from performer to director has been a gratifying yet challenging process. “It has been really rewarding because the cast, the crew and the production team have been incredibly professional throughout the whole process,” Ms Shipways said. “We’re all setting a new high standard for community theatre.” “The whole process is a long and winding road, and it has been so humbling to be up front to experience how much effort goes into it all,” she said.

 Director Brittanie Shipway and Musical Director Matthew Herne. Photo: Jessica Lovelace

Her partner in crime in this is Matthew Herne, a St Clare local who is too swapping the limelight of performing for the more low-key job of musical directing. For Mr Herne the most important thing about music theatre is that the whole production is able to connect to the audience. “The most important thing for me is communication with an audience, and the best way to do it is through theatre,” Mr Herne said. He said one of the most challenging parts of the process for him was the

 Children’s cast. Photo: Danielle Roorda

progress and the planning out of the whole production. “It is a bit like seeing this big project through from the beginning,” he said. “From the beginning you have this idea in your mind as to what it will look like at the end, but as it goes on you’re pleasantly surprised because it turns out better than you ever thought it could be.” Collectively Ms Shipway and Mr Herne said the best part of the production and rehearsal processes has been the professionalism shown by the cast.

“There is so much talent in the cast and we’re really lucky that we get to showcase it all,” Shipway said. “It is an huge cast with over 90 people,” Mr Herne said. “Of those 90 odd people around half of the cast is aged between 8 and 14, so we have a really professional cast of kids as well.” Both Ms Shipway and Mr Herne have performed on the reality TV show The Voice, with Ms Shipway making it into the final 40 in the 2014 season.



Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

Locals dream big in Dream Coat


INSTRUCTIONS Fill the grid so that every column, every row and every 3x3 box contains the digits 1 to 9 with no duplicates



































Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

Keegan’s Kitchen

Heavens Above with Reverend Ross Hutchison

Haloumi & green pea mint salad

How many ways can you make yourself useful? As I was saying in my last column, I believe we all have individual special gifts. Have you been giving this a fair consideration, made a list of your really positive traits? I am reminded of the proverb, “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” I am also in awe of what people can achieve with even a tiny bit of talent that is brought to a situation. Tiny things can mean a lot! I am especially overwhelmed by the tiny word, ‘up’. If such a tiny word can do so much in helping us describe an action, a situation, a direction, a feeling, etc, should we be searching within ourselves to amplify and multiply even our smallest of attributes? Is it time we gave ourselves a “Wake UP,” a “Shake UP,”...and took a real good look at ourselves... and find even greater possibilities Within Ourselves? Life is great. It is filled with miracles. You are a living miracle yourself! (I have this on God authority!) I’ll leave it UP to you! Cheers for now, Your Mate, Rossco

... Serves 4 THIS week someone came up to me and congratulated me on the fact that we’ve published a sensational vegetarian recipe. Last issue we published a recipe for croquettes, a great, seasonal recipe. This week I’m going to continue the trend with a minty, fresh and seasonal salad of haloumi and baby peas. This dish is easy and quick so anyone in a rush or under the pump can simply throw it all together. It would be a great addition to any lunch time table.

INGREDIENTS: 380g of frozen baby peas 180g of thick cut haloumi cheese 1 1/2 cups of mint leaves Zest of 1 lemon 1 tablespoon of lemon juice 1 1/2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil METHOD: Pop the peas in a large heatproof bowl and cover with boiling water. Let the frozen peas par-cook until they’re

tender. Drain the hot water from the bowl and refresh the peas under some cool water. Heat up 2 tablespoons of oil in a non-stick flying pan and cook the slices of haloumi until golden brown on both sides. Set aside on some paper towel to drain. In a large salad bowl combine the peas, haloumi and lemon zest. Whisk up the remaining oil, lemon juice with a drizzle of olive oil and pour over your combined salad. Toss well to mix through all the dressing and ingredients.


Level 1, Cnr Queen and Belar Sts, St Marys

Sydney’s Best

HALLOWEEN PARTY NIGHT Mention Nepean News and receive $5 off per ticket when booking

SATURDAY 29 OCTOBER 6.30 to 11.30pm: 3 Course Dinner, Stand Up Comedy & Tribute Show Characters changing every 3 mins Just some of the tributes you can look forward to seeing:

BOOK NOW: 9623 4850


9623 4850






• Includes glass of Bubbles & 2 Course Dinner • Doors Open at 7pm • Join the Fun & Dress to impress – Prizes for Best Dressed




Entertainment by Julia Parashko See the race on the big screen Sweeps-Raffles TAB facilities Complimentary glass of bubbly with every main lunch meal purchased










Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

A beanie for each year

THE Lions Club of Emu Plains recently presented 100 beanies to the staff of the Oncology unit of Nepean Hospital for their patients undergoing treatment. The donation was coordinated through Our Community Cares (Cancer Council) and as a consequence of a specific donation by local businessman, Graeme ‘Spud’ Murphy and KIS Industrial, of Peachtree industrial estate. The presentation also marks Lions centennial celebrations, for a worldwide century of Lions International community service. Emu Plains Lions members, Alan Cooper, John Choma and Bob Baines

(left to right) in yellow shirts, pose with oncology nurses and Kris Gauci (2nd from right in white shirt of Our Community cares) all with beanies proudly atop their heads. If you are interested in helping others, then Lions is for you. To enquire about joining Lions, please contact Memberships Manager, John Choma at home on 4735 5120 or, or Secretary, Sue Hunt on 4735 7789, mobile 0409393711 or, or come to a casual dinner meeting at Emu Sporting Club, Leonay on the 3rd Wednesday of the month. Look for the yellow shirts!

CROSSWORD ACROSS 1 Deliberate (7) 5 Mesh (7) 9 Out-and-out (9) 10 What chocolate comes from (5) 11 Pins (7) 12 Make bigger (7) 13 Assign (9) 15 Effeminate (5) 17 A South American rodent (5) 19 A finger or toe (9) 22 Laid bare (7) 25 Craftsman (7) 26 Dike (5) 27 Discriminate (9) 28 Probably (2 words) (7) 29 People watching their calories (7)

DOWN 1 Made broader (7) 2 In an illegal manner (9) 3 Front limb of a horse (7) 4 Make laws (9) 5 French for “Our” (5) 6 These stop football plays (7) 7 Become liable to (5) 8 Food market (7) 14 Disaffected (9) 16 Well-kept (9) 17 Pampered (7) 18 Take one’s clothes off (7) 20 Utmost (7) 21 One of New York’s baseball teams (7) 23 Forever no (5) 24 Dirty (5)

solution 6/10/16


36 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

Play trivia and possibly star in a local movie! By Kerrie Davies

CIRCLE Saturday 26th of November on your calendar for a fun filled night of trivia supporting the locally produced feature film called Book Week. Hosted by Penrith Paceway the BOOK WEEK Trivia Night will take place in the Members Room and will consist of trivia as well as a number of

gifts and memorabilia which will be up for auction. Teams will sit at tables of 10 so get your crew together and test your knowledge at what is sure to be an evening full of laughs. All tickets will also be automatically placed in a draw which will be announced at the conclusion of the evening - The winning table will win a place in the film itself with all members of the winning team to be included in a scene from BOOK WEEK! Funds raised will go directly to the production of the film which has a literacy and social focus, aiming to encourage a move from students and the general public back towards reading and writing. BOOK WEEK will feature some of Australia’s best acting talent including Brendan Cowell (Beneath Hill 60, The Slap), Susan Prior (Animal Kingdom, The Rover), Steve Bastoni (The Water Diviner), Tiriel Mora (The Castle), Pippa Grandison (Georgie Girl), Chris Taylor (The Chaser) as well as newcomers Airlie Dodds and Rose Riley. Following the global success of ‘Broke’ writer/director Heath Davis said his last film’s focus on problem gambling made a huge impact within the community and he hopes to create similar awareness with BOOK WEEK, which carries a social message of its own. “We are really encouraging kids and adults to switch off their iPhones and pick up a book or pen. As a local teacher I’m very passionate about promoting literacy,” Heath said. “Everywhere you go people are using hand held devices usually to play games or keep themselves up to date on social media. We really want to drive people back into reading and writing, using their imaginations,

opening their minds and experiencing life not just via Facebook.” Filming solely within Penrith and the Blue Mountains, the filmmakers are inviting local creatives, schools, businesses and residents to share in the journey. “Filmmaking is all about collaboration and we are really adamant about including the townsfolk,” said Producer James Nightingale. “It’s more than making a film for ourselves, we want to build a collective project and create something the entire community can be proud and a part of.” The tickets for the trivia night are just $42 with food included in the ticket price and of course the bar will be open. Kicking off at 6.30pm, tickets can be purchased by visiting



He Says........................ ............................She Says FORGET about whose side of the fence you are on, one has to ask why we would need to spend $2 billion dollars of tax payers money to run a poll on what is a foregone conclusion. We just went through an expensive federal election and now we want to spend a fortune on a plebiscite to find out what people want. It would appear the people already know what they want, it is only the Turnbull Government who want to justify a massive spend so that they don’t have to make a decision themselves. Let’s have a look at all the Turnbull government decisions over the past twelve months, zzzzzzzzzzzzzz that’s right none, zero, zilch. We are a Country in desperate need of a leader and Nero fiddles whilst Rome burns. So many decisions needed and we waste time and money on a marriage equality debate that should be just bought on in Parliament, the majority will vote yes and we can get on with the business of running a country. Hospitals in western Sydney need at least a billion dollars in extra funding to enable them to cater for our existing population, let alone the growth of the future. Many other public health facilities would be in the same boat, but we can’t spend that much money because it would break the budget. Finding $2 billion to appease a few right wing conservatives however, is not a problem. You were elected to run the country, you are being paid to run the country now for goodness sake run the country or jump out of the driver’s seat and let someone in who can drive.


I AGREE with the plebiscite idea. While it seems that few are against marriage equality and it sounds like something that could be quickly changed to suit the times, we are after all, making a pretty significant change to the Marriage Act. So I think a plebiscite will legitimise the whole thing. If it goes through, then the homophobes can never say “well nobody asked us what we wanted, the government just went ahead and did it.” The public will have spoken. I also don’t believe an overwhelming result from the public would be in any danger of not going through parliament. It would be a brave and foolish politician who goes against the public mood. I do not particularly agree with the argument that debate on the issue will expose gay people to hurtful opinions. Seriously? Some of my best friends in the world happen to be gay and that would not be something new – they’ve been hearing homophobic opinions their entire lives – they’ve never been completely shielded from it, and let’s face it - there’s nothing that can be said that they’ve never heard before. There are schools of thought that relate to marriage equality which aren’t directly answered in the action of just passing it. For instance, would marriage equality open the door for programs like “safe schools” that have caused some angst for parents? Would there be a push to degenderise things in the name of fairness? Would terms like Mum, Dad, Husband, Wife become socially unacceptable terms? I think it is a discussion that needs to be had, and I think we are grown up enough to have it.

Who do you agree with? Send your vote to for a chance to win a table for 4 at the Major Oak Theatre Restaurant including dinner and show.


Sonia Kruger remarks - stuff up or beat up?




“Rex Hotel” continues

N January 1957, another proposal for a hotel in St Marys was before the Metropolitan Licensing Court with an application for the removal of the licence from the “Balranald Hotel” to premises proposed to be erected with shops and again at the corner of Queen and Chapel Streets, St Marys. (This was briefly mentioned in a History Page 7/4/2016). The same objections to the proposal about the proximity to the Church were raised by the District Licensing Inspector, L J Hooker (for the Rex Hotel) and clergymen of the district. Cross-examination suggested that conditions at the proposed new hotel would lend itself to out-of-hours drinking. The licensing Inspector Sergeant Hughes (Penrith) objected to its proximity to a church (Methodist Church) but otherwise approved of the application as provision had been made for parking and accommodation provided for the public that would be adequate as twelve bedrooms would be built. The licensee of the Balranald Hotel applied for the conditional removal of the hotel to the proposed premises at the corner of Queen and Chapel Streets. L J Hooker also objected on the grounds that the proposed site for the hotel was not suitable and the requirements of the neighbourhood would not justify its erection, also alterations to the “Rex Hotel” currently being carried out would provide for the accommodation necessary at St Marys. Questions were asked about how many people were being provided for (in the proposed new hotel) regarding seating in the hotel lounge and the answer was approximately 150 and that it would cost £107,000 to build. Another question asked was why couldn’t the twelve extra bedrooms and other additions be added to the Rex Hotel which would cost much less? The answer was because of the unusual local conditions regarding the Rex Hotel and there were innumerable factors that could not be answered without a proper analysis of the situation. There was also a question about drinking after 10 p m and Mr Brenchley of the “Kingswood Hotel” said that accommodation at his hotel was always full as people had come to him because they had been knocked back at St Marys due to their hotels being full. A retired publican Mr Kaye of Mosman corroborated this and Mr Tasker of Marsden Road told of overcrowding at St Marys’ hotels. The Court held that the proposed hotel “was not” in the immediate vicinity of a church and it also said that existing drinking facilities in St Marys were adequate but that the growth of the town would alter this position. It was held that the present hotels were not adequately catering for accommodation but that the provision of meals was reasonable. The transfer of the license of the Balranald Hotel in the Riverina to St Marys was refused because of the inadequacy of the parking area provided in the plans that would provide a traffic hazard and there was no room to extend the proposed hotel other than upward. In August 1958, a St Marys man was charged for maliciously damaging a plate glass window at the Rex Hotel that was the property of Rex Investments Pty Ltd. The damage was estimated at £20. Det. Sergeant Mackenzie of Penrith said that the man and a number of other young men including the man’s brother, were in the beer garden of the hotel when an argument started with a woman about a glass of beer and the contents were thrown over the woman and a brawl started when the man and others then threw numerous glasses and one struck the plate glass door and completely smashed the glass. The licensee had the offenders removed and the man was barred from the hotel for three months. The next night the man and a number of other young men returned to the hotel at about 7.30 p m where a vicious brawl took place between the man’s brother and the licensee. The licensee

requested no action in the matter but asked that action be taken about the plate glass window. The man said that he didn’t intend to do any harm as he was affected by intoxicating liquor. Det. Sergeant Mackenzie said that he had known the man and his family for some years but under the influence of drink he was a pest, but sober the family were quite good types. The man was told he would get 12 months hard labour if he caused any more brawls at the hotel. He was fined £20 and to pay damages of £20 plus £10 forthwith and the balance in 14 days or he was in default and would spend 80 days imprisonment with hard labour. In February1959 at a Penrith Council meeting, a request for “no booking” of motorists with regards to the question of angle parking of’ vehicles in Queen Street near the Rex Hotel. A letter was received from the Police Traffic Branch stating that the only satisfactory way of improving traffic conditions in the vicinity of the unnamed road north of the hotel was to eliminate angle parking by removing the ornamental plots located on either end of the parking bay. In view of this, Council proposed to hold a conference between Council and the Traffic Branch about the matter and to ask the Police Department to take no further action against motorists parking in the bays. In April 1958, the members of the Amalgamated Engineering Union were moving their Branch meetings to the Rex Hotel to start at 7.30 p m. In October a robbery occurred at St Marys between 12.30 a.m. and 5.45 a.m. at the premises of the Rex Hotel. Mr Frank Kerr the licensee said that the hotel had been broken into and approximately £2,000 in money was stolen from a strong room in the office together with several cheques. Access had been gained by forcing a window into the saloon bar and removing a pane of glass into the office. The strong room was cut open by acetylene cutters. Inquiries were made by Det. Sergeants’ Wells and Morey from the Safe Squad and Det. Sergeant Mackenzie and Det. Fetners of Penrith. Members of the Scientific Bureau and the Fingerprint Section also attended. September 1959 saw the St Marys’ Apex Dinner No 40 held at the Rex Hotel where Chairman Vic Wise presided over 19 members and six visitors that included the District Governor John Ffrench. Apexians Rod Smith and Ken Lovdell each gave interesting three-minute talks. John Ffrench read his report on the last Apex convention held in Newcastle. Five jobs had been made available for prospective British migrants who were coming out on the Apex ship that was leaving Britain later that year called “Operation sea life”. St Marys’ Apex were looking to arrange housing for at least one complete family in the St Marys district. At the Dinner No 56 held at Rex Hotel the Chairman was Apexian Laurie Weatherly. Twenty-one members and guests attended. Guest speaker for the evening was Mr. John Ankers, civil defence director of Penrith City Council area. This was the second lecture that he gave and was confined to the hydrogen bomb fallout. As a result of these lectures a great deal of knowledge had been derived on what can be gained with civil defence in a community in the case of an emergency. On December 12 Apex members were assembling in Glossop Street to plant trees in the centre aisle of this road. Camphor laurels were planted alternatively with bottle brush. Residents in the area were urged to co-operate with the Apexians in taking an interest in the welfare of these trees, particularly in their early stages. A combined dinner and Christmas party was held at the Rex Hotel in the special clubroom that had been added to the building. TO BE CONTINUED... Sources: Nepean Times, Trove, The Sun, 1930 photo of the Balranald Hotel Bar courtesy of Victoria Museum website. Lyn Forde – Research Officer of St Marys & District Historical Society Inc

37 Nepean 2015 Issue 143 NepeanNews News19 20February October 2016 186

nepeanhistory nepean

90 ADELAIDE STREET, OXLEY PARK HOME SWEET HOME A PLUS PROPERTY GROUP are delighted to bring to the market a selection of 5 beautifully appointed 3 and 4 bedroom townhouses. These architecturally designed townhouses feature open plan living, oversized bedrooms, two car spaces and fully equipped European style kitchens. The enviable location gives residents great access to local shopping centres, schools and public transport that provides direct links to Penrith and Sydney. For a short period of time, we are giving buyers the opportunity to enter into the market at very affordable, pre-construction prices. More features include: • Timber floor in living and dining areas • Built-in wardrobes in all bedrooms • Ceiling fans to all bedrooms • Daikin Ducted reverse cycle Air-Conditioning • Remote controlled garage • Internal laundries • Quality building materials used throughout

• Quality carpet upstairs • Main bedroom with Ensuite and walk-in wardrobe • Energy efficient Downlights throughout • Ample storage space • 2.5 Bathrooms • Low maintenance yard

Built by one of the leading property developers in the local area. FIRST HOME BUYERS QUALIFY FOR A FULL FIRST HOME BUYERS GRANT. INVESTORS RECEIVE $5000 TOWARDS STAMP DUTY. These are just a few of the many features these stunning townhouses have to offer, be sure to book an appointment with A PLUS PROEPRTY GROUP on 02 9833 4002 OR 0416 922 477.

34 AUSTRALIA STREET, ST MARYS PRE CONSTRUCTION PRICES A Plus Property Group is now giving you the opportunity to purchase one of the best townhouses to come on the market in the St Marys and Penrith district. This boutique development is a selection of 6 townhouses which all feature a generous layout, 3 bedrooms, 1 Study, 2 car spaces and European style kitchens with smeg appliances as standard. Western Sydney is one of the fasted growing economies in Australia, creating new benchmarks in building-infrastructure, construction and technology. The Western Sydney Airport will be the first new international airport built in Australia in over 50 years and is set to bring major infrastructure upgrades, skilled jobs and economic growth. Penrith Council is setting the pace as a City of the Future’. More features include: • Timber flooring in living and dining areas • Built-in wardrobes in all bedrooms • Fans to all bedrooms • Daikin Ducted reverse cycle Air-Conditioning • Large car port • Internal laundry • Quality building materials used throughout

• Quality carpet to all bedrooms • Main bedroom with En-suite and Walk-in robe • Energy efficient Downlights throughout • Ample storage space • 2.5 Bathrooms • Low maintenance yard & strata complex

Built by one of the leading property developers in the local area. QUALIFIES FOR FULL FIRST HOME BUYERS GRANT + STAMP DUTY. INVESTORS RECEIVE $5000 TOWARDS STAMP DUTY. For a limited time only, we are pleased to be offering highly affordable, pre-construction prices so please contact A-Plus Real Estate today to ensure you don’t miss out.

85 MORRIS STREET, ST MARYS GREAT VALUE Penrith is one of the fastest growing cities in Sydney. The multi-million dollar transformation, that is already underway, will create new benchmarks in building-infrastructure, construction, technology and government arts and culture. Penrith council is setting the pace as a City of the Future. A Plus Property Group is now giving you the opportunity to purchase one of the best townhouses to come on the market in the St Marys/Penrith district. This boutique development is a selection of eight townhouses which all feature a generous layout, 3 bedrooms, 2 car spaces and European style kitchens with smeg appliances as standard. More features include: • Timber flooring in living and dining areas • Built-in wardrobes in all bedrooms • Fans to all bedrooms • Daikin Ducted reverse cycle Air-Conditioning • Large car port • Internal laundry • Quality building materials used throughout

• Quality carpet upstairs • Main bedroom with En-suite • Energy efficient Downlights throughout • Ample storage space • 2.5 Bathrooms • Low maintenance yard & strata complex

Built by one of the leading property developers in the local area. QUALIFIES FOR FULL FIRST HOME BUYERS GRANT + STAMP DUTY. INVESTORS RECEIVE $5000 TOWARDS STAMP DUTY. For a limited time only, we are pleased to be offering highly affordable, pre-construction prices so please contact A-Plus Real Estate today to ensure you don’t miss out.

1/99 Canberra St, Oxley Park | 9833 4002



All your real estate questions answered, with Darren Latty ~

How do I buy at auction? AUCTION clearance rates are high at the moment, but for many people it can be too daunting experience. However, with property scarce in our market at the moment buyers would do well to embrace the system. So what do you need to know beforehand? • Research first! Request the contract from the agent and have your solicitor look over it. In some cases there may be a building and pest report available, or you should be able to arrange access to have your own. Ask the agent for similar recent sales in the area and do your own research online. Check out transport links, schools, and other amenities depending on your needs. • Be ready to commit.

Aside from the bidding, the biggest difference between a private sale and an auction is that purchases at auction have no cooling off period – so you’ll need to have your loan unconditionally approved and have a 10% deposit ready. • Be registration ready The agent should provide you with a Bidders Factsheet from NSW Office of Fair Trading, and you’ll need to sign a register and show some ID to be able to bid. If you want to appoint someone to bid on your behalf a letter of authority will need to be provided to the auctioneer before bidding begins • 10% deposit will be needed This can be paid by personal cheque, bank cheque (although you won’t

know how much the property will sell for so you’ll need to get 10% of your maximum amount), deposit bond (this is a guarantee from the bank that you have the assets available to pay the 10% deposit, but it will cost you money to get. You will need to let the auctioneer know beforehand if this is how you intend to pay) , eft (make sure you’re transfer limit is high enough!) or even actual cash. Or a combination of these options. • Auction doesn’t mean overpaying Not necessarily! The buyers are hoping that bidding will get competitive, but they are also keen to sell on the day. The media tends to focus on auctions where bidding gets very competitive and drives the

price up, but they don’t all go that way! Once the property has passed the reserve price it will be sold to the highest bidder. If it doesn’t reach the reserve price (it’s known as being ‘passed in’) the vendors may opt to begin negotiations straight away with bidders. • Be on time! Auctions normally start promptly and can be over very quickly. I’d recommend you grab a coffee and get there early to make sure you don’t miss out or feel flustered. We’ll be covering the pros and cons of selling at auction in the next column, but if you’re thinking of selling and want to know more now feel free to give me a call on 0414 620 532.

39 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

realestate real



Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

New sports field looking for tenants UNTIL 18 November 2016, Council is calling for expressions of interest from not-for-profit sporting clubs and associations wanting to establish a presence in Jordan Springs from winter 2017. The new Village and Northern Road Ovals provide flexible recreation spaces that will support a range of sport and recreation activities and encourage participation by the local community. Penrith Mayor John Thain said the new multipurpose fields have the capacity to cater for a range of sports. “Penrith is a city that loves its sport, so I know the new facilities will be well used,” Cr Thain said. “No one sport or organisation has been identified to use these fields, and Council wants to make sure as many people as possible benefit from them.” Construction of the fields is now complete and once the turf has had a chance to become established, the fields will be ready for organised sports for the winter season in 2017. The Northern Road Oval (2.5ha) includes a modified field, all abilities playground, hard court, picnic and BBQ facilities, toilet facilities and parking for 40 cars. The Village Oval (5.5ha) includes two sporting pitches and /or one oval, netball and basketball

 Penrith Mayor John Thain and General Manager of Lendlease Communities (NSW/ACT) Arthur Ilias at the Northern Road Ovals which are seeking expressions of interest from sporting clubs and associations.

court, playground, and full amenities building and parking for 80 cars. Sporting clubs and associations wishing to submit an expression of interest need to use the application form and read the information

provided on Council’s website. Council will hold an information session to provide options for field configurations / sizes due to the complexity of possible seasonal combinations for different sports

on Tuesday 25 October at 5:30pm in the Penrith Civic Centre. Clubs and associations need to register their interest for this meeting by calling Virginia Tuckerman on 4732 8092.

Strengthen your weakness with Scott Lewis LET’S face it, it’s not all that difficult to start a fitness routine. After all, most of us have done it more than once, the trouble for many is sticking with it. All too often, our initial enthusiasm and energy wanes, we get distracted by other things going on in our lives, or we don’t think we’re seeing results quickly enough, and we throw in the towel. HERE ARE MY TIPS TO MAKE EXERCISE A ROUTINE, WHICH WILL SOON BECOME HABIT! 1. Do a variety of activities you enjoy: And remember, there’s no rule that says you have to go to a gym. Participating in a variety of activities such as weight lifting, walking, running, tennis, cycling and aerobics classes will ensure that you can do something regardless of the weather or time of day. 2. Commit to another person: The social aspect of exercise is important for many. If you agree to exercise with a partner, you’re a less likely to not let them down. 3. Make exercise a priority: It has to be a nonnegotiable. Another advantage to making exercise non-negotiable is that friends and family members learn that it’s part of your identity, 4. Exercise first thing in the morning: Many experts agree that a morning schedule is best. If you go to a gym, it should be located between your home and work, this way you can exercise, take a shower, and you’re energized for the day! 5. Or, exercise on your way home from work: The next best thing to exercising first thing in the

morning is to do it on your way home from work. If you can don’t go home first! There aren’t a lot of people who are so motivated that after they go home, change clothes, who will go back out again and exercise. 6. Exercise even when you’re “too tired:” Chances are, you’ll feel better after exercising. It energizes you. You’ll get an exercise-induced euphoria during the activity and for some time after. 7. Log your activity: Write down the things that are important to you. It could be how much time

you exercise each day, how many steps you walked, how far you ran or cycled, what you weighed, etc. 8. Be aware of all the indicators of progress: It’s great when your clothes fit better and you can lift heavier weights or work out longer without getting exhausted, and even more important, feeling healthier! 9. Walk -- with a pedometer (or a dog): If you enjoy walking and haven’t exercised for a while, 10 minutes three times a day will give you 30 minutes. Use a pedometer, and work up to at least 10,000 steps a day Then the next week aim to walk a few thousand steps more, then from there increase your steps incrementally each week. Or Better yet, walk the dog! This is good for you, and the dog, and provides companionship. 10. Reward yourself: Are you telling yourself that you don’t deserve a reward for something you should be doing anyway -- or that once you can zip your jeans without lying on the bed, that will be reward enough? Well, honestly, how inspiring is that? Making behaviour changes is hard, and rewards motivate. So decide on a goal and a reward, and work towards it. You might buy yourself something you’ve wanted after you stick to your fitness plan for a specific amount of time! Check out our website at www.wildpantherfitness. or follow ‘Wild Panther Fitness’ on Facebook, Instagram (@wildpantherfit) and on Twitter (@wildpantherfit.) Until next time “STRENGTHEN YOUR WEAKNESS!”

Tofaeono wins major gong

NADO ready to roar

By Noel Rowsell

PENRITH Panthers Youth League centre Ella Tofaeono has finished the 2016 Waratah Youth League season with several plaudits but certainly the most prestigious was received last week. Ella was one of several players and officials to receive awards at Basketball NSW Annual Awards Luncheon on October 9, taking out the ‘Karen Dalton Junior Metro Female Player of the Year’ award. 2016 has been a huge success for the local youngster, after returning from knee surgery in 2015. Ella began the year as a member of the NSW Under 20 Women’s team, which competed at the Australian Under 20 Championships in Ipswich. Although the Blues finished a disappointing fifth, Ella averaged an excellent 11.67 points and 9.33 rebounds per game. Fast forward to August and after an action-filled season, Ella led the Panthers Division One Youth League Women’s team to win this year’s premiership title.

 Ella Tofaeono (Oakhurst) dominated in the paint for the Panthers in 2016. Photo courtesy of Noel Rowsell (

Her performances through the season were recognised in the awards, with the talented youngster taking out the ‘Best Defensive Player’ award and selection into the ‘All-Star Five’. Ella’s next goal is to win selection in the 2017 NSW Under 20 Women’s team and has attended the first of two

trials earlier this month. The second trial will be in November, with the team being announced at that time. “I’m just looking forward to 20’s and whatever comes after that, we’ll see” said Tofaeono. “I’m also in the Sydney Flames academy so I’m constantly working on my game”.

MEMBER for Mulgoa, Tanya Davies MP, has given her support to the Nepean Area Disabilities Organisation (NADO) Dragons Touch Football representative team, wishing them well for the upcoming Bundaberg Cup, off the back of securing financial support from the NSW Government to the tune of $2,000. The cheque was presented to NADO CEO Denise Heath, who was joined by some of the team players, eager to participate in the touch football competition, once more. NADO is a community-based charity, supporting people with disabilities in the Nepean region, including in Hawkesbury, the Blue Mountains and Penrith and their surrounding suburbs. “One of the aspects of NADO that I am always struck by is its ongoing support for those who suffer from disabilities to be able to engage with the wider community, which is reflected in the formation of sporting teams, such as the NADO Dragons,” said Tanya Davies. Ms Heath expressed her joy for the financial assistance provided by the State Government. “It means so much to us that we have received this funding. While $2,000 may not seem like much, I can assure you that it will make a meaningful difference to our team and I cannot wait to have them out on the field again,” Ms Heath said.

Sports Scenes

(With Thanks to 77 Media)

This edition, the cameras of 77 Media bring you the Sammut and Di Bartolo show that unfolded in Penrith’s Round 3 clash v North Sydney at Howell Oval.

Di Bartolo cuts through the off-side.

While Jona takes to the spinners and goes over the top.

Di Bartolo goes high and wide.......

And salutes as he brings up another century at Howell Oval.

Both players are warmly appreciated by their teammates at Lunch

As Jona powers towards his first century on home soil.

41 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186



penrith panthers celebrating 50 years

Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186



1991 GRAND FINAL WINNERS REUNITE AFTER 25 YEARS IT’S hard to get excited about Rugby League once the grand final is won and done. It’s like watching cricket in July. But I have to say the recent test match between Australia and New Zealand had my attention. For a few reasons. Mal Meninga is now the Aussie coach and am keen to see what subtleties he injects. There were three rookies for the Aussies that I was keen to glimpse. And the Panthers own Trent Merrin, who missed his brother’s wedding to participate, was in the starting team. Couple this with the fact the the Kiwis were fielding arguably their strongest lineup, in particular their forward pack,  Trent Merrin on the charge for the Kangaroos in a very long time, this game had all the trademarks of being more than just another Test Match between the two this up-coming four nations. It will also be good to long standing rivals. But unfortunately the game see Panther young guns Temaire Martin and Dallin Watene Zelezniak running around for the Kiwis in never reached any great heights. Sure the first half was close, the three debutantes England. If the latest game between the Aussies (Holmes, Boyd, Frizell) all starred, and Trent Merrin and Kiwis is any type of measuring stick then Mal was probably best on ground, but it’s hard to get up Meninga’s boys will be damn hard to defeat. But, the Kiwis do play better in a tournament type for a game that is being played only a couple of weeks after the epic grand final we were treated to. atmosphere and the English boys with the Burgess brothers, Josh Hodgson and Elliott Whitehead Even if it was a test match. One-off encounters post-season don’t seem to from the Raiders will offer some sort of defiance attract that “must watch this game” type of feeling. but it would be some kind of massive upset to see I’m sure the four nations will be different when Australia superseded when the four nations kicks it’s a mini comp of four countries (Australia, New off later this month. Zealand, England, Scotland) played in the Pom’s And another thing... back yard, so hopefully they’ll provide some type Last Friday week was a great day. The 1991 grand of opposition. Likewise Scotland, who are a virtual unknown for final winning team had our reunion in the shape of

 Panthers 91 winning team

a Harbour cruise in the fine waters of the greatest Harbour of all - Sydney. Many a tale was told over the six or so hours we spent cruising around on what was a sparkling day. Sure many of that ‘91 team have physically changed a tad but the memories of the first ever premiership to the foot of the mountains weren’t lost. We’d all like to thank Lou Zivanavic and Col Henry for organising it and I hope it’s not another 25 years until this special group is back together again. For the record, Paul ‘Nobby’ Clarke was best on ground when he stole the show with his rendition of Twist and Shout by the Beatles in the on-board Karaoke competition.

MG (random Westie) OAM



BLACK CATS REMAIN UNBEATEN, SURGE TO THE TOP OF THE CLUB CHAMPIONSHIP “It’s very competitive for batting positions Penrith continued their promising start to but he hast done himself any harm with the the 2016/17 season with a 17 run win over form he’s shown in the Matador Cup so traditional foes, North Sydney in the two-day we’ve certainly got our fingers crossed for game that concluded last Saturday at Howell him at the moment. Oval. “He’s a great young player as we all know The win puts the unbeaten Black Cats into and we’re expecting him to enjoy a long and fourth and with wins in all five grades (plus fruitful first-class career. Metro Cup), the defending club champions “He’s on his way now so the sky’s the have stormed to the top of the championship limit for Ryan.” ladder, leading Gordon by 16 points. Winning the toss and batting first for Speaking of Pat Cummins, his the third game in a row, Penrith with Jona comeback from injury has continued to Sammut (123) and John Di Bartolo (119) gather momentum in the Matador Cup. scoring centuries, looked like posting a 400  Michael Wholohan believes Josh Lalor’s early season form warrants selection Cummins has taken 11 wickets in four plus total having reached 2/221. for NSW. Credit 77 Media. appearances including two four-wicket But a batting slump brought the visitors hauls. back into the game before some late-order runs from Luke Hodges (36) enabled Penrith to post board for this week’s two-day clash with Manly The Poidevin-Gray limited overs competition 362 runs. so the selectors certainly do have a few interesting for players under 21, got off to thrilling start last With North Sydney 6/136 in response, it looked like a selections to make. matter of when not if Penrith would secure first-innings “You know you’re in a good position when you Sunday week with Penrith scrapping home to defeat Randwick-Petersham by two wickets at Howell Oval. points but according to Michael Wholohan, one of the have such decisions to make.” best innings ever seen on Howell Oval almost saw the It’s also not very often that an undefeated Speaking of Poidevin-Gray, which Black Cat was visitors snatch an improbable victory. skipper steps aside after three rounds but that’s the not thrilled to be overlooked for the captaincy? “I didn’t it would be as close as it was in the end but scenario facing Tim Cummins. full marks they batted superbly especially their captain The Lady Cats’ season got under way with mixed Avendano who cracked 190 (off 179 balls, 28 fours and Having played their opening three games at Howell two sixes),” Wholohan said. Oval, the Black Cats will play their next two fixtures results. First up, the Lady Cats took on Gordon “That’s one of the better innings I have seen in my versus Manly and Randwick-Petersham away from and were beaten resoundingly by 156 runs, before returning home last Sunday to record a 46 run win time at Howell Oval. home. “He just hit shots all around the wicket, scoring at Over the next two Saturdays, Penrith will be looking over Campbelltown-Camden Ghosts last Sunday better than a run-a-ball right from the get-go and was to make it four from four when they take on traditional despite missing the likes of Naomi Stalenberg and Mikayla Hinkley, both away playing with the Lend virtually chanceless throughout. powerhouse club, Manly at Graham Reserve. “It was a real nail-biter but in the end getting him Despite their lowly fifteenth position, Wholohan Lease NSW Breakers. out proved to be the difference between winning and says the Black Cats will need to respect Manly given Meanwhile, with Stefanie Taylor returning to losing.” they seem to rise for the occasion against Penrith. Penrith were once again best served by Josh Lalor, “They’ve had a bit of a slow start but they’ve got the Sydney Thunder for season two of the WBBL, whose 4 wicket haul takes him to ten for the season to a very strong side and in general they’ve been a very hopes are high that Penrith may again secure her services as a guest player. date (fourth-best) while Luke Hodges and Ryan Smith strong club for some time now,” Wholohan said. took 2 wickets each. “I’ve got no doubts we’ll be in for a hard game.” Penrith’s annual Back to Penrith Day and Pink Wholohan was quick to praise Lalor, stating that Penrith’s number one bowler deserves to be playing Penrith also remain unbeaten in thirds (third), Panther Day at Howell Oval, will be held this season first-class cricket for NSW this summer. fourths (fourth) and fifths (second) while seconds’ on Sunday December 4 to coincide with a T20 double-header that will see Penrith take on Blacktown “Lalor bowled thirty overs superbly in trying first win of the season lifts them to fifteenth. at 10am before backing up at 2:30pm to play Central conditions,” Wholohan said. “He’s a quality cricketer, a superb bowler and I’ve got Ryan Gibson continues to make every post a winner. Coast. no doubts he deserves to be playing first-class cricket Two fifties (including a 97 against a NSW side In an exciting initiative for women’s cricket, again this summer.” where he was ironically dismissed by Penrith team mate, Pat Cummins) and a century in the Matador Penrith will host women’s social cricket for ladies Meanwhile, Wholohan admits Luke Hodges’ Cup has seen the 22-year old Black Cat selected for 16 years and over, with all games commencing contributions with both bat and ball, will make for the Cricket Australia XI that will play South Africa in at 6pm on Friday nights at Howell Oval, for six weeks, starting October 21. a very interesting selection night ahead of the clash a tour match at the Adelaide Oval on October 22-23. Players can register either individually or as a with Manly, given that regular skipper Matt Halse According to coach Michael Wholohan, Penrith team of six. Cost is just $60 per person to register returns. may not see as much of Gibson as they first thought. “He’s made a great transition into first grade and is “I think he’ll be very close to getting a start with absolutely NO experience necessary. Register here: certainly not out of his depth,” Wholohan admitted. in the NSW Sheffield Shield side,” Wholohan pages/noauth/mpintro.aspx… But it’s great to have Matty Halse back on declared.

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43 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186



penrith panthers celebrating 50 years

Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186




Last edition, we brought you the news that Panther utility Tyrone Peachey was the next priority signing for the club, along with Waqa Blake. Sure enough, last Tuesday came the news that the 2015 Merv Cartwright Medallist had extended his contract to the end of 2019. The decision obviously puts to bed any lingering notion that there is any issue between he and Anthony Griffin despite being dropped twice in 2015 for different reasons.

It was not so good news for Peter Wallace who was forced to make himself unavailable for selection, having aggravated the elbow injury during the finals, while former Panther, Zak Hardaker missed out on England selection. Congratulations are in order for Panthers winger Josh Mansour, who got married last Saturday and missed the Trans-Tasman Test in the process, while prop Leilani Latu, was married the previous weekend in Bali.

Speaking of Waqa Blake, the Panthers hope to have his signature on a new deal once he returns from holidays in his home town, Perth where he was spotted taking in the Trans-Tasman Test between Australia and New Zealand. Blake was also a late withdrawal from the Fiji side that also featured Panthers team mate Viliame Kikau, which came back from 18-0 down to defeat Samoa 20-18 in the recent Pacific Test. As mentioned last edition, some big decisions will need to be made with Dean Whare and Dallin Watene-Zelezniak. But while speculation continues to flow freely that both players are set for pre-season moves away from the club, Panthers General Manager, Phil Gould AM, hosed down any such notion stating that both players are required players for 2017. Meanwhile, despite being under contract for 2017, Jeremy Latimore’s name also continues to be linked with a pre-season move, with Melbourne said to be interested in securing the popular prop’s services. As we suggested last edition, Penrith has signed Redcliffe half, Darren Nicholls for 2017, while outside back Michael Oldfield, has also joined the Panthers in 2017 from South Sydney, having also previously played for Manly, Sydney Roosters and Catalan Dragons. One Panther who is set to find a new home in 2017 is Will Smith. Former club, Newcastle had been negotiating with the utility back but its believed negotiations have broken down over concerns over his rate of recovery from a knee reconstruction. Parramatta are believed to be the club most likely to sign or have signed Smith for 2017.

Penrith’s 2017 membership drive is underway and many would have no doubt noticed the distinctive colour scheme being used on the web page. It’s likely the distinctive colour scheme of red, yellow and green will also feature on the club’s jerseys, due to be revealed in November.

 More good news for Panther fans with Tyrone Peachey re-signed until the end of 2019. Credit: 77 Media.

Meanwhile Newcastle have also been linked with lower grades half/hooker, Zach Dockar-Clay and should the interest be genuine, it’s unlikely Penrith will stand his way despite being under contract for 2017. One VERY interesting rumour that landed in the inbox is that the Knights have reportedly set their sights on none other than Te Maire Martin. This may explain the speculation that Penrith are looking to upgrade his contract. It was mixed news in the Watene-Zelezniak household last Saturday, with Dallin losing his Kiwi test spot to in-form Raiders winger, Jordan Rapana but in some good news, older brother Malakai represented NZ Maoris at fullback in their 30-10 loss against NZ Residents last Saturday. IN some late news, Penrith now has six participants in the upcoming Four Nations series with rookie back-rower James Fisher-Harris capping a stellar season with a late call-up to the


With six representatives in the Four Nations series, don’t expect Penrith to play in the upcoming World Club Challenge in the UK. Instead Penrith will be going into camp in Port Macquarie during January that should feature skills clinics for the local juniors. Another successful Panthers presentation night was recently had with Trent Merrin the big winner on the night, taking out the prestigious Merv Cartwright Medal as Penrith’s best and fairest player for 2016 but there were a host of other players recognised for their efforts. Peter Wallace: John Farragher Award, Members’ Player of the Year, Oak Try of the Year (v Bulldogs Finals Week One) Nathan Cleary / James Fisher-Harris: Ben Alexander Rookie of the Year Zach Dockar-Clay: ISP Player of the Year Corey Waddell: NYC Player of the Year Glen Liddiard: Clubperson of the Year Isaah Yeo: Senior Education Award Liam Martin: Junior Education Award Of course if you have any Panthers news you wish to share, email me stewart@nepeannews. See you at the game (in 2017)! #PantherPride


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NRL Level 3 High Performance Rugby League Coach Masters of Coach Education, Sydney University Listen in to the Fifth and Last NRL Podcast, available every Wednesday in the Podcast App, iTunes and on audioBoom

AS coaches we expect our players to learn, develop and improve their skills on a constant and regular basis. And often we can forget that challenge exists not only for our players but for us as coaches. We must invest in ourselves to ensure we are constantly improving, refreshing and reinventing ourselves. The moment you stop learning and challenging yourself is the moment you begin to regress. Personally I do this in a variety of different ways: • Watching as much Rugby League as possible at a variety of different levels from both here in Australia and in the United Kingdom. I try to pick up ideas on new tactics, plays and strategies and often while watching I will coach the game in my own head. When would I make interchanges? Could the coach have an impact tactically or strategically? Talk with coaches and professionals within other sporting codes and share methods and ideas.


• I often attend and watch training sessions from other sports. In previous years this has been in consultation with the Penrith Cricket Club. I have been down to the GWS Giants to get a new perspective on coaching. I like to see how they structure training sessions, how they warm up / cool down and whether there is anything that they are doing which I think I could implement in order to improve my own programs, ideas and philosophy. • I tend to watch a heap of NFL and College Football games during the offseason along with coaching documentaries most of which originate from the NFL or College Football in the USA. These programs again give you an insight into different approaches, strategies and methods of teaching that you can cross over into your own skill set. Jump onto YouTube and search: “NFL Hard Knocks” which features a new franchise each year, “Strong and

45 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186


True” which features Notre Dame or “Scarlet and Grey Days” which features Ohio State. • Read! I tend to read books from coaches overseas who are involved in other sports again to gain a different perspective on how to improve my skill set as a coach. The fish bowl of Rugby League coaching has become very cookie cutter and similar over the last ten years and we need coaches who are willing to break the copycat cycle. A few books I would suggest: The Winner Within, The Education of a Coach, The Man Watching, Talent Code, The Gold Standard, The Winners Manual and Legacy. When reading you don’t need to take everything as gospel and not everything you read you are going to agree with or are going to be able to practically apply in our field of Rugby League. However it gives you a fresh and engaging perspective on sport and sports coaching.


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46 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

Penrith’s odd couple pile on the runs By Stewart Moses @TheRiffMarn

AT one end of the pitch is the veteran opener that bats like there’s no tomorrow no matter what the situation. Joining him at the crease at 2/69 is the team’s young tyro, who on the back of his stellar start to the 2016/17 season, is already eyeing off the possibility of scoring 1,000 runs in a season. Both go on to flay the North Sydney attack to bring up theirs and the team’s first centuries of the season, putting together a scintillating 142 run partnership that provides the foundation for the Black Cats to post 362 runs, that ultimately proves to keep Penrith undefeated after three rounds. For each player, their achievement means something different. John Di Bartolo, who came into the game with his spot in the team under some pressure having yielded little from his two one-day innings, the feeling is one of relief, having scored 119 off just 113 balls that included 13 4’s and 3 6’s. “I wasn’t too confident in the way I was playing but I did a lot of work with Mick Castle during the week and it paid off,” Di Bartolo declared. “It was good to get back into the red ball cricket and get back in the runs, so I think I’m safe for next week anyway as it was looking a bit dire after the first two games. With the recruitment of Michael Castle and Ryan Gibson adding to the return of UK import, Tom Kohler-Cadmore as well as the emergence of young

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talent such as Ryan Hackney, Di Bartolo admits that while there is plenty of pressure to perform in order to hold his spot, it can only benefit the club in the long run especially when it comes to developing the next generation coming through. “That’s the way I enjoy my cricket. When there are players fighting for positions it brings the best out of players be it a batter or bowler so It’s a good challenge to have,” Di Bartolo confirmed.



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 The two centurions, Jona Sammut (left) and John Di Bartolo discussing tactics. Credit 77 Media.

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“I keep saying to the second graders that my spot is the one you’ve got to take. “If there’s a guy that’s 30 and batting first grade he’s going to be the first one to go.” Conversely for Jona Sammut, his 123 from 145 balls that also included 13 4’s and 3 6’s, confirms his status as a player on the rise in Sydney grade cricket, having scored his third career first grade century to go with his two half-centuries scored in Penrith’s opening rounds, as he looks to consolidate on his breakthrough 2015/16 season, already sitting ninth on batting aggregates after Round Three. The young batsman, only returned from a mixed stint in the UK a week and a half before the start of the Sydney season, but says the experienced gained has made him more determined to succeed this summer, even setting himself that lofty goal to achieve. “It’s been a really good start to the season for me and I’m really happy to be back at Howell playing our first three games here and its going well,” Sammut said. “I put my form down to perhaps having that extra year of maturity (under my belt) as well as going to England and the experiences I gained from playing cricket over there with Greenmount in the Greater Manchester League. “Playing over there, not everything went to plan. The weather was bad, only playing ten of 22 games and we got relegated. “But it also made me hungrier to come back to grade and succeed early on.” “I want to get a thousand first grade runs this season.”

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Top four must be our goal in 2017: Merrin By Stewart Moses @TheRiffMarn

PANTHERS General Manager, Phil Gould AM recently closed the Penrith annual presentation night, stating that the challenge now for Anthony Griffin’s young but rapidly emerging playing roster in 2017 is to “beat the best, when they at their best.” It’s a statement that Penrith’s 18th and latest Australian international, Trent Merrin, couldn’t agree more saying that whilst 6th position was a great result for 2016, the bar now needs to be been set higher for 2017 with a top four spot being their goal. “Gus is right with what he said. Every year you’ve got to set that bar higher,” Merrin declared. “A lot of the players found out what they’re capable of doing at the back end of this season. “It’s a good building block to build on for 2017 and we’ll definitely be working really hard to set the standards really high and put ourselves in contention as a top four team.” On that same night only moments before, Merrin was awarded with the Merv Cartwright Medal, presented to the player judged to be Penrith’s best and fairest in 2016. It was poignant that Bryce Cartwright’s father and son of the late Merv Cartwright, Dave Cartwright, would announce Merrin as the 2016 medallist, which not only left the 27year old Shellharbour junior shellshocked and humbled, but reinforced Merrin’s ability in overcoming what was arguably his toughest year as a footballer. “I was just dumfounded, very humbled, speechless,” Merrin said. “It’s definitely been one of the biggest and toughest years of my career, it’s been a rollercoaster ride. “But it has taught me a lot about myself as a person.” “I needed to leave the Dragons as I was getting a bit stale in my footy and passion for the game. “I felt I needed to get out and test myself, put myself outside my

 Trent Merrin led Penrith’s charge to the finals and is a deserved Merv Cartwright Medallist. Credit: 77 Media.

comfort zone and into uncomfortable positions. “But I’ve been fortunate to have some great people around me to help make that transition a lot easier, especially the players that we have at this club, whom I couldn’t have come through like I have without their support. Having debuted for Australia in last year’s Anzac Test before being overlooked for this year’s TransTasman test, Merrin now has a golden chance to establish himself as Australia’s long-term No.13 after playing a leading role in last Saturday’s resounding win over New Zealand in Perth. But for a significant portion of 2016, Merrin feared his representative rugby league career was finished after being overlooked for both Australia and NSW and that in itself presented plenty of additional challenges for the first-year Panther. “There were personal challenges I faced. You start to doubt yourself and a lot of negatives come into the mind about not playing rep footy and it is really a mentally challenging

position,” Merrin said. “It was a tough pill to swallow but I just went away and worked on the things I needed to. “Once I got comfortable with the uncomfortable (of missing selection) I started to play the footy I know I am capable of and gained a lot of confidence mid-season. That confidence enabled Merrin to produce arguably career-best footy to help the inexperienced Panthers to the second week of the NRL finals, which culminated with that recall to the Australian side. But whilst the Merv Cartwright Medallist hopes his test selection will pave the way for a return to the NSW Origin team for the 2017 State of Origin Series, he adds that if he plays his best footy for his club weekto-week, the rest should take care of itself. “You set these things as your highest goal every year, to represent your state and your country,” Merrin said. “What I’ve learnt from this year is to just focus on one week at a time and do the best you possibly can for your club.


Offer ends 31/10/2016. See in Store for Terms and Conditions.

“If it’s meant to be (to be picked for these teams), it will happen but the main focus is being the best player you can be and whatever comes off the back of that is a bonus. “And if you’ve got that chance to do it again, you take it with both hands and make the most of it.” Taking that opportunity with both hands was easier said than done when Trent had to forego best man duties at his brother Dean’s wedding in order to reclaim that test jersey. “It was a tough knowing that I wouldn’t be by my brother’s side when his fiancée would walk down the aisle but Dean and his partner have really been accepting about the position I’ve been put in,” Merrin said. “He’s my biggest fan and is 100 percent behind me. “Dean said he would have been really upset if I didn’t take it. “He knows these opportunities don’t come around too often so to have that support and love behind me from my brother on his special day, goes to show how selfless he is and how much he loves and respects what I do for a career.”

47 Nepean News 20 October 2016 Issue 186

penrith panthers celebrating 50 years

Thursday, 20 October 2016


Penrith perfect for women’s rowing By Conner Lowe

THE Penrith district has been selected as the new home for Australia women’s national training centre. The facilities will be built along the Nepean river, with the first stage of the Women’s National Training Centre to be operational no later than January 2017 able and to accommodate up to 50 elite female rowers. Penrith was selected through a competitive selective process with rowing facilities from across the country, including in Queensland and Victoria, to be the destination for women rowers from across the country to train. Women’s rowing head coach, John Keogh spoke about the importance of Penrith being chosen as the home of women’s rowing and for rowing Australia. “Well it’s a major step forward for rowing Australia, to bring all Australia’s women rowers together in Penrith and training

Penrith MP Stuart Ayres and Mayor John

together is what the sport needs,” John said. “Penrith is almost a natural choice, it has one of the best rivers to train on, nine out of ten days the water is going to be flat and the river is wide and straight. There aren’t very many rivers where you have those conditions in Australia,” he added. John also went on to acknowledge how the training facilities that are to be built along the river and the newly

appointed coaches will benefit the women athletes. “Absolutely the facilities can improve our women athletes, having all the women together, training together, focusing on the end goal is crucial and it’s what our competitors are doing. Also with the newly appointed coaches Tom Westgarth and Ellen Randell, having worked with women athletes for years will have an impact on the athletes,” John said.

Minister for Sport and Member for Penrith, Stuart Ayres last week announced a brand new Rowing Australia Women’s National Training Centre will be based on the Nepean River in Penrith. “The stunning Nepean River is one of the best stretches of training water in the country has been selected over waterways across Australia as the preferred location for this exciting new training facility,” Mr Ayres said. “This is a massive win for the Penrith community, a brand new facility will be established including a boathouse to accommodate a full fleet, a dedicated onsite Strength and Conditioning area plus amenities for athletes and coaches. “The NSW Government has committed $200,000 toward the facility with further funding matched from Rowing Australia.” He added. The first stage of the Women’s National Training Centre will be operational no later than January 2017 able to accommodate up to 50 elite female rowers.

Nepeannews 20october2016