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Southern Peninsula

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Wednesday 25 March 2020

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Breaking camp CAMPERS have a reputation for being able cope with anything nature sends their way. But the hundreds enjoying a break on foreshores at McCrae, Rosebud, Rye and Sorrento have been unable to withstand the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Campers were either packing up on Saturday or preparing to leave by 5pm Sunday in line with Mornington Peninsula Shire’s decision to close its foreshore camping grounds because of the coronavirus emergency. The decision made on advice from health authorities comes just before the Easter break and early school holidays announced on Sunday by the Premier Daniel Andrews. Closing the camping grounds also includes all amenity blocks. Although campers are not allowed to stay overnight, they can leave their equipment at camp sites until 5 April. Refunds will be made to those who left before their booking has ended. “While we are disappointed the camping season has to end early, it is a necessary step to protect our community and do our part to flatten the curve of this pandemic,” a statement issued by the shire stated. The shire may now have to decide how to help homeless people who use the camp sites and amenity blocks. Keith Platt

Free food plan as virus hits home Keith Platt keith@mpnews.com.au FREE parcels of food and personal care items are to be delivered to needy and socially isolated people across the Mornington Peninsula. The food parcel plan is part of the rollout of emergency measures by Mornington Peninsula Shire to help lessen the spread and effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Under the Caring for our Community program volunteers and staff left without jobs by the closing of shire services due to the coronavirus outbreak will be redeployed to deliver

packages being put together with the help of health and welfare agencies, Red Cross, the Department of Health and Human Services and community leaders. In its call to action, the shire hopes its program will “encourage our community to get through this challenge [of the coronavirus pandemic] together [and] foster the Anzac spirit”, CEO John Baker said in an email to councillors last Thursday (19 March). The program will also aim to “counteract negative social behaviour with uplifting stories and volunteering opportunities”. “Just to let you know we are making

progress on supporting our community through this crisis,” Mr Baker said. He and the mayor Cr Sam Hearn had “talked through” the Caring for our Community program with Flinders MP Greg Hunt, who was “very supportive”. The email quoted Cr Hearn: “We need to be at our very best as a community in these times. We need to proactively care for our neighbours and volunteer in any way that we can to help those around us and support our local community.”

Mr Baker said “key benefits” of the program included support “for our most vulnerable residents”; creating a sense of community connectedness; reinforcing the “benefit of helping each other through these challenging times”; and encouraging others to be community minded. Meanwhile, Cr Hugh Fraser has warned that the council cannot afford to “drag its heels” when formulating its 2020-2021 budget. “[Council] needs to be up front with the community now and thinking about what to expect over the next financial year: what’s likely to be needed for the community, how is it going to be safely provided and by whom, how much

is it going to cost and how is it to be paid for?” Cr Fraser said it was reasonable to expect state and federal governments to slow their payment of grants and to expect rates to go follow a similar pattern, both effecting cash flows. He said these impacts on its finances could mean that council has to borrow money to meet demand for “our home and community service delivery”. Cr Fraser said the COVID-19 emergency could lead to a significant downturn in economic activity “over perhaps 18 months”. “Peninsula sees last of the big days out” Page 8

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Riders gear up for enduro titles RED Hill Mountain Bike Club will host the 2020-21 Gravity Enduro National Championships. Races will be held 24-25 October this year and 23-24 October 2021 in what’s being described as “exciting news” for the club. It’s the first time the Arthurs Seat venue has hosted a national championships event. “We will be crowning champions in each category and also issuing a personalised jersey to the first-placed rider in each category,” Red Hill Riders Mountain Bike Club’s Mark Jessup said. “The top riders across the country will be travelling to our wonderful Mornington Peninsula to battle it out. I’m aware of a team of juniors being sent from Karratha in north-west Western Australia to race – that’s 4547 kilometres away!” Mr Jessup said the location offered a variety of hand-cut trails with plenty of natural tree root and rock gardens scattered throughout the network. “The course has good draining sandy soil along its 310-metre elevation, plenty of technical descents and steep liaison climbs,” he said. More than 300 riders took part in last year’s event at Maydena, Tasmania. Online registrations open 1 July.

Fast track: A daring rider tackles a rocky descent on the Red Hill mountain bike course. Picture: Supplied

Councillor ‘sick of trolls’ and attacks Stephen Taylor steve@mpnews.com.au FRAYED tempers in public and barbs on social media have so upset a Mornington Peninsula Shire Councillor that she is calling on her critics to “back off”. Cr Julie Morris said she has endured “12 months of snide comments” from Tyabb Airfield supporters voicing a “whirlwind of abuse” towards her and her family, both online and in public. “I’m almost at the point where I don’t know if I can send my daughter

to the local school anymore,” Cr Morris, a senior constable with Victoria Police, said. “I feel I am at the point where we will have to move. I am sick of it.” Cr Morris, who has led the council push to have relevant and consistent planning permits in place covering all the airfield’s operations, said: “They weren’t this rude until I had to make some tough decisions. Yet every one of my [decisions] was made with full council support. “They should not target my family; they should keep it professional.”

Security issues arose at the council’s boisterous 17 February planning services committee meeting to discuss a planning scheme amendment in and around the airfield. Cr Morris said that before the meeting she was advised to park her car in the street and not the council car park where it could be vandalised. “One of the most upsetting things is that some people will only see the online trolling comments about me and my family and form a view even though they’re not factual,” she said. “Not one person has picked up the

phone and asked me why I have voted this way. “My integrity is at stake here.” Peninsula Aero Club president Jack Vevers said he “absolutely did not support online trolling”. “My advice is to always remain respectful and courteous,” he said. “It doesn’t do any good to our cause to act in that manner and I am opposed to that approach. “I don’t know what that’s about, but it is wrong. We can always disagree, but we should always be respectful.” Cr Morris said she had “always sup-

ported the airfield” and “wishes decisions about its permits can be resolved quickly” to help give the airfield the security of tenure to remain operating. “I’m not here to be popular, but to help make the right decisions.” Mornington Peninsula Shire mayor Cr Sam Hearn said it was “not fair for people needing to make complex decisions to have their families talked about online”. “Ninety-nine per cent of the community want us to respect each other and pull together – especially at this particular time,” he said.

Supermarket charges A ROSEBUD man who allegedly stabbed a Woolworth’s supermarket staff member has been charged with intentionally causing serious injury, recklessly causing serious injury and other assault-related charges. The 25-year-old, who was arrested in nearby Sixth Avenue, was remanded in custody to appear at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court, 9 June. The incident occurred while the staffer, also of Rosebud, was collecting trolleys in the car park of the Rosebud West supermarket, 1pm, Tuesday 17 March. Rosebud police Senior Sergeant Steven Duffee said the “isolated incident” was “not related to panic buying”. Detective Acting Senior Sergeant Steve Reidy, of Somerville CIU, said the 37-year-old was stabbed in the lower body. He was taken by Air Ambulance to The Alfred hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and was said to be in a stable condition Wednesday morning. Police cordoned off the area and the store was closed for the remainder of the day.

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Southern Peninsula News 25 March 2020


NEWS DESK Police patrol

With Stephen Taylor

Woman trapped A CAR rolled twice and ended up on its side after running into the rear of a car waiting to turn into The Briars, Nepean Highway, Mt Martha, last week. A 44-year-old Mornington woman driving a Toyota Kluger was trapped for an hour after colliding with a Holden Commodore driven by a 74-year-old Dromana woman, 3.40pm, Tuesday 17 March. CFA crews from Mount Martha, Mornington and Dromana attended. CFA Commander Brandon Crowder said the Jaws-of-Life was used to free the woman by cutting off the roof of her car to gain safe access and maintain spinal stability. She was flown by air ambulance to The Alfred hospital and the Dromana woman taken by road ambulance to the Frankston Hospital. They were said to be not seriously injured. Sergeant Bruce Buchan, of Somerville Highway Patrol, said both cars were travelling north when the crash occurred near Uralla Drive. The Nepean Highway was closed in both directions for about two hours.

Crane truck blaze UP to 16 CFA trucks, police and the EPA attended a crane truck fire at Tyabb, 1pm, Wednesday 18 March. The blaze began when diesel from a faulty

Picture: Gary Sissons hose ignited and began burning the cab and spreading throughout the truck at the corner of Frankston-Flinders Road and Western Port Highway. EPA crews set up a hazmat site to prevent fuel leaking into water courses. Four semi-trailers and another larger crane truck arrived to hoist the blackened wreck onto a low loader. The driver was not injured.

Fatal at Hastings A MAN died when his motorcycle and a van collided at Hastings, early Tuesday 17 March. It is believed the rider was travelling west on Hodgins Road when he collided with a fooddelivery van just after 4am. The van was turning onto Hodgins Road from Michelle Drive when the incident occurred. The 21-year-old man driving the van was arrested at the scene and was said to be assisting police with their inquiries. AT about 11.30am on the same a motorcyclist escaped serious injury when he collided with

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a car at Merricks North, 11.30am, Tuesday 17 March. The 65-year-old, of Skye, was riding east along Bittern-Dromana Road while a Subaru driver, 35, of Mount Martha, was coming from the west and turning into Tubarubba Road. Sergeant Bruce Buchan, of Somerville Highway Patrol, said the rider was airlifted to The Alfred hospital with head, hip and leg injuries. His condition had improved by Thursday and he was expected to be sent home.

Fake $50 passed A MAN, above, who spent counterfeit money at a Baxter motel on 31 January is being sought by police. Detectives from Mornington Peninsula CIU said the offender approached the gaming counter in the Baxter-Tooradin Rd business and exchanged a counterfeit $50 note for two $20 notes and one $10 note. The attendant realised the note was not a standard note. The offender is described as being of medium height and build, red hair, unshaven and was wearing a black shirt with multi coloured board shorts. Anyone with information about any of these incidents is urged to contact Crime Stoppers 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential report at bddy.me/2Whuq5M with incident number 200044999.

Hospital after collision TWO women were taken to Frankston Hospital for assessment after a collision between a WV Golf and a Mitsubishi Outlander on Mornington-Tyabb Road, Mornington, last week. Leading Senior Constable Dave Burton, of Mornington police, said the incident occurred after one of the cars failed to give way after driving from the service road, near Satu Way, 11.52am, Thursday 12 March.

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Southern Peninsula News

25 March 2020

PAGE 5


NEWS DESK

Southern Peninsula

Wait and see on open loos

Proudly published by Mornington Peninsula News Group Pty. Ltd

PHONE: 03 5974 9000 Published weekly

Circulation: 22,870

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Journalists: Stephen Taylor, Brodie Cowburn 5974 9000 Photographers: Gary Sissons, Yanni Advertising Sales: Ricky Thompson 0425 867 578 or ricky@mpnews.com.au Real Estate Account Manager: Jason Richardson 0421 190 318 Production/Graphic design: Marcus Pettifer, Dannielle Espagne Group Editor: Keith Platt 0439 394 707 Publisher: Cameron McCullough REGULAR CONTRIBUTORS: Craig MacKenzie, Peter McCullough, Stuart McCullough, Ben Triandafillou ADDRESS: Mornington Peninsula News Group, PO Box 588 Hastings 3915 Email: team@mpnews.com.au Web: mpnews.com.au DEADLINE FOR NEXT ISSUE: 1PM ON THURSDAY 26 MARCH 2020 NEXT ISSUE PUBLICATION DATE: WEDNESDAY 1 APRIL 2020

An independent voice for the community We are the only locally owned and operated community newspaper on the Mornington Peninsula. We are dedicated to the belief that a strong community newspaper is essential to a strong community. We exist to serve residents, community groups and businesses and ask for their support in return.

A COUNCILLOR is waiting to “see what response comes back from the community” before again considering a move to have foreshore toilet blocks opened to all beach users – not just campers and beach box owners. Cr Hugh Fraser was speaking after fellow Mornington Peninsula councillors at their 25 February meeting knocked back his push to have all 26 toilet blocks open daily. Claims by officers that this would cost the shire an extra $750,000 a year may have swayed their votes. “That was a ridiculous sum of money and it certainly frightened the other councillors,” Cr Fraser said. “We saw no detail of how the officers arrived at that amount and perhaps I will do another notice-ofmotion asking for the costings to be explained.” Cr Fraser said there was “strong community support” to make the toilets available to everyone – especially in Rye. “The point has been made that the laundries and toilets could be separately controlled and I don’t see why they can’t be opened,” he said. Rye Community Group Alliance wants the council to rethink its decision to keep most foreshore toilets open only to campers and beach box owners”. Chairperson Mechelle Cheers scoffed at claims by officers that the shire may have to adjust camping fees downwards to “reflect the changed camping experience” if the blocks were opened to all foreshore users instead of just campers and beach box owners. The group is pushing to have the

Got to go: The convenience block near Hygia and Weir streets, Rye. The sign says the nearest public toilet is half a kilometre away. “That’s a bit far if you have a young child or a failing bladder,” a reader said.

toilets near Woolworths and close to Whitecliffs Hill opened for a limited number of hours – say, 8am-5pm every day of the week – for use by everyone on the Rye foreshore. It wants the council to authorise an evaluation of the costs involved. “The council’s decision [to knock back Cr Fraser’s motion] involved no consideration as to the context of the community request, including the distance between toilet facilities,” Ms Cheers said. “They simply make excuses: such as campers having the toilet cleaning fee built into their camping fees. This is, of course, nonsense as ratepayers pay rates for the delivery of services. “The other excuse is vandalism and, while this is real, the toilets mentioned could be closed at the end of each working day.” The group believes the shire is ignoring the needs of those caught short far from the nearest open pub-

‘A high performing provider of education on the Mornington Peninsula’ As the highest performing secondary school on the Mornington Peninsula, Dromana College will continue to work tirelessly to develop and consolidate the many exemplary educational programs on offer. With outstanding facilities, a committed professional staff and a caring school community, students are challenged to explore their interests and talents to achieve their personal best.

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RESPONSIBILITY, RESPECT, INTEGRITY, PERSONAL BEST PAGE 6

Southern Peninsula News 25 March 2020

• • • • •

• • • • •

lic toilet while out walking, cycling or with small children. “There has been no consideration as to what it must be like to be near a toilet and find it closed,” Ms Cheers said. “The Rye community wants access to two toilets for a limited number of hours – not access to all toilets like the campers and beach box owners have. “We are asking for equal rights to toilets on public land, remembering that Rye more than pays its own way through revenue-generating activities on the foreshore. “Many in the community are puzzled as to why council will not properly and transparently consider giving approval for two extra toilets to be opened for a limited number of hours. “Such a service would be welcomed by the thousands of noncamping, non-beach-box-owning locals and visitors to the Rye foreshore.” Stephen Taylor


Fundraiser gives lift to CFA FUNDRAISING efforts including a charity auction last month have helped Red Hill Fire Brigade raise more than $225,000 for building works. The auction, held at Many Little Bar and Bistro on Friday 21 February, raised $80,000. “The day was a huge success with a raffle and auction and was attended by more than 200 people,” First Lieutenant Sam Norris said. “Hamish McLachlan as the MC did an incredible job.” Donations and pledges helped raise the total to a staggering $225,000.

“We are incredibly humbled by the generosity of our community,” First Lieutenant Norris said. First Lieutenant Norris said the works would raise the height of the truck parking bay at the Mechanics Road building to four metres to accommodate new trucks standing 3.3 metres high. “We’ll be doing most of the actual work ourselves on the renovations as we have a few builders, plumber and electrician in our ranks,” he said. “And we’ll rely on a few community contributions, such as concreting, from nearby tradies and residents.” Stephen Taylor

An important message from the Victorian Government

MANAGING CORONAVIRUS TOGETHER WILL FLATTEN THE CURVE.

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Stay informed at coronavirus.vic.gov.au

Southern Peninsula News

25 March 2020

PAGE 7


Peninsula sees last of the big days out THE Tyabb Air Show, the Great Outdoor & 4x4 Expo at Mornington Racecourse, and the Rosebud Kite Festival were probably the last big events to be held on the Mornington Peninsula for the foreseeable future. While timing was on their side, many other community attractions and events have been cancelled or postponed to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Shire services MORNINGTON Peninsula Shire is postponing, cancelling or modifying delivery of a range of non-essential services, programs, events and activities. These include libraries at Mornington, Rosebud, Somerville and Hastings, and the Mobile library; Pelican Park Recreation Centre, Civic Reserve Recreation Centre and Somerville Recreation and Community Centre, and The Tourist Information Centre at Dromana. The shire says it wants to protect the community, particularly the more vulnerable, and help “flatten the curve” of the pandemic. Staff will work from home wherever possible and cancel non-essential face-to-face meetings over the next four weeks. They will be available by email or phone to assist if possible.

Relief centre open MORNINGTON Community Information and Support Centre’s Emergency Relief Centre at 320 Main Street will remain open to assist those struggling personally or financially in

MORNINGTON Peninsula Regional Gallery, Mornington, will be closed to the public until further notice to help limit the spread of coronavirus. The gallery’s collection, exhibitions, stories and children’s activities can be seen at mprg.mornpen.vic.gov.au. The gallery’s Facebook and Instagram pages are also active. Online snapshot: A Collection of Stranger Things can be seen online at Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery. Picture: Supplied

the community. Manager Stuart Davis-Meehan said the Monday night dinner at the Freemason’s Hall, Barkly Street, from 5.30, would be modified to provide a take-away meal only. Fresh food parcels would also be available. The needle and syringe program will operate as normal. Details: 5975 1644.

Environment BERG Mount Marth’s working bees, meetings and other events have been cancelled and The Briars visitor centre and nursery have closed. The wildlife sanctuary and picnic and barbecue areas at The Briars will open as normal 9am-4.30pm daily. The free plant giveaway, scheduled for April, has been postponed until September. Autumn school holiday programs have been cancelled and fees will be refunded. Those who have booked weddings and functions can go ahead if they want. Mornington Peninsula Shire’s website and Facebook page will be update as needed.

Theatre ROSEBUD Astral Theatre Company president Brendan Croft said the Addams Family auditions had been cancelled. The company is looking at options for the September musical and Mr Croft said he would provide more information as it becomes available.

Art show ART Red Hill, which had been planned for the weekend of 1-3 May, has been postponed. Last year the opening night event attracted about 600 people, and more than 4000 over the Art Red Hill weekend. Hundreds of talented artists from the Mornington Peninsula and around Australia take part in the event which also features a cafe, kids’ art tent and pop-up shop. Co-convenor Marlo Reyneke said the committee opted to postpone the show in consultation with the Red Hill Consolidated School and in line with government health advice. “We believe this is the best thing to do for our community,” she said. “We look forward to holding a fantastic Art Red Hill later in the year for the show’s 40th birthday.

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Southern Peninsula News 25 March 2020

“We will announce a future date in due course, and will keep people updated online and via social media.” Artists who have already submitted works for this year’s show can either leave their submissions with organisers for consideration in the show later in the year, or request a refund. Organisers will make an announcement when artist submissions reopen. Details: arhrhcs@gmail.com

Schools WOODLEIGH’S senior and junior schools have ended their on-campus programs. Students will move to a continuous learning plan and engage in remote and online learning programs from this week. Toorak College has also ceased its on-campus program and will begin its remote and online learning program this week. Peninsula Grammar students will begin online classes at home from Monday morning and following the usual school timetable.

Anzac Day ALL Mornington Peninsula Anzac Day services have been cancelled. Veterans’ affairs minister Darren

Chester said Anzac Day was one of the most important days on the national calendar, but expert advice was that large public gatherings posed an unacceptable risk to the community. “This decision has not been made lightly and has taken into consideration a number of key factors, primarily concerns about the welfare of Australians and other visitors travelling to Anzac Day services as well as views of host nations regarding visitors and large gatherings, the impact on health systems of overseas nations, and the welfare of staff and contractors travelling overseas,” Mr Chester said. Call the coronavirus hotline 1800 675 398 for further information.

Sport DROMANA Football and Netball Club has cancelled training and practice matches for all its teams. Secretary Graham Stelling said the aim was to protect players, coaches, volunteers and their families as well as the wider community.

Racing MORNINGTON Cup Day on Saturday 21 March will be run without spectators, owners and those nonessential to the operation of a race day. General admission pre-purchased ticket holders will receive a full refund. Public attendance is also banned at Melbourne Racing Club track work and jumps venues. The Peninsula Picnic festival at Mornington Racecourse, Saturday 28 March, has been postponed.


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All our properties are available for inspection by private appointment, 7 days a week. In consultation with our Vendors, all our properties are available for inspection by private appointment, 7 days a week. Our open homes will have new guidelines to minimise any impact this virus may potentially have on our vendors, purchasers and staff. These new guidelines will include:

* Social distancing with others, minimum 1.5 metres * Use of hand sanitiser upon entry * Avoid touching any items within the home If you have returned from overseas in the last 14 days, or if you are displaying any flu like symptons, please refrain from attending any open homes or private inspections at this time. We will be working extra hard through this difficult time to ensure any and all of your real estate needs are met

2375 Point Nepean Road, Rye Ph: 5983 3038

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2/2327 Point Nepean Road, Rye Ph: 5985 8800 mpnews.com.au

granger.com.au Wednesday, 25th March 2020

SOUTHERN PENINSULA NEWS

Page 2


Auction Saturday

Capel Sound 61 Elizabeth Avenue

Rosebud 7/791 Point Nepean Road

Contemporary Home Close To The Beach

Position, Craftsmanship and Security.

* Four year old home on low-maintenance 500m2 (approx) allotment * Four bedrooms, master with en-suite and walk in robe * Open plan light filled living walking on to a alfresco area & decking * Well-equipped kitchen with walk in pantry, island bench & dishwasher * Stone benchtops & timber floors * Double garage with rear access * Ducted heating and evaporative cooling

* Two large robed bedrooms, main with semi en-suite * Gas ducted heating and reverse cycle air conditioning * Decking and undercover entertaining area * Beautiful open plan living with large kitchen and breakfast bar * Single lock-up garage with internal access

4

2

2

AUCTION

Saturday 28 March 11:00am INSPECT As advertised

2

CONTACT Craig Leo 0412 502 938 Milly Smith 0455 458 296 Barry Plant Rosebud 5986 8880

1

1

FOR SALE

CONTACT Craig Leo 0412 502 938 Milly Smith 0455 458 296 Barry Plant Rosebud 5986 8880

PRICE GUIDE $530,000 - $550,000 INSPECT As advertised

Just listed.

Rosebud 52 Murray-Anderson Road

Rosebud 9 Banksia Place

Tropical Resort-Style Living.

Forthcoming Auction.

* * * * *

* Desirable location only a few minutes walk to the Rosebud Plaza and foreshore * Three bedrooms with built-in robes, main with en-suite * Large open plan living & dining area plus well-equipped kitchen * Single garage with internal access * Gas heating and air conditioning

Set on a corner site of approx 750m2 & located only 500m to the beach Fully renovated home offering large open plan formal & informal living areas Well-equipped kitchen with unique glass splash back & breakfast bar Polished hardwood floors & plantation shutters throughout Resort style landscaped grounds offering gas / solar heated in ground swim spa, timber decking, under cover entertaining & outdoor kitchen * Gas central heating and evaporative cooling

3

AUCTION

2

Saturday 18 April at 12:30pm INSPECT As advertised

2 CONTACT Craig Leo 0412 502 938 Milly Smith 0455 458 296 Barry Plant Rosebud 5986 8880

3

1

2

FORTHCOMING AUCTION PRICE GUIDE $500,000 - $550,000

CONTACT Craig Leo 0412 502 938 Milly Smith 0455 458 296 Barry Plant Rosebud 5986 8880

INSPECT As advertised

mpnews.com.au

Wednesday, 25th March 2020

SOUTHERN PENINSULA NEWS

Page 3


‘a lifestyle village for the over 50’s’ 249 High Street, Hastings, 3915 www.peninsulaparklands.com.au

SOLD

$225,000 u u u u

Bed

Bath

Car

2

1

1

Open plan lounge Separate dining area Modern kitchen Separate bathroom & laundry

$248,000 u u u u

Bed

Bath

Car

2

1

1

Fantastic open plan Kitchen plus separate dining area Lounge with air-conditioning Single garage with roll-a-door

$249,500 u u u u

Bed

Bath

Car

2

1

1

Separate study Open plan kitchen, dining area Lounge room with air-conditioning Separate bathroom and laundry

UNDER ACT R T N O C

$250,000 u u u u

u u u

Bath

Car

2

1

1

Kitchen with great bench space Lounge room with air-conditioning Renovated bathroom and laundry Rear verandah, single carport

$275,000 u

Bed

$250,000 u u u u

Bed

Bath

Car

2

1

1

Kitchen/diner with bay window Lounge and main bedroom both with air-con Separate bathroom and laundry Front & rear verandahs, garage w/workshop

u u u

Bath

Car

2

1

1

Huge lounge with new carpet Both bedrooms have BIR’s Kitchen with great bench space Veranda and a single carport

$295,000 u

Bed

$260,000 u u u u

Bed

Bath

Car

2

1

1

Huge open plan living Dining area set in bay window Renovated kitchen is a must see 2.2 K/W solar system has been installed

u u u

Bath

Car

2

1

1

Fantastic floor plan Huge kitchen & dining area Large lounge with air-conditioning European laundry

$325,000 u

Bed

Bed

Bath

Study

Car

2

1

1

1

Open plan living Kitchen with great bench space Lounge room with raked ceilings 2.2 K/W solar system has been installed

To arrange your site inspection contact David Nelli 0403 111 234 or at the office on 5979 2700 Email: david@peninsulaparklands.com.au mpnews.com.au

Wednesday, 25th March 2020

SOUTHERN PENINSULA NEWS

Page 4


LETTERS

Letters - 300 words maximum and including full name, address and contact number - can be sent to The News, PO Box 588, Hastings 3915 or emailed to: team@mpnews.com.au

Community wants goodwill from quarry’s owner The written statement by Hillview Quarries’ CEO Paul Nitas to the recent community 7 March public meeting over the proposed new quarry development on Arthurs Seat states that “the company was hoping for understanding, support and goodwill from the community”. I would ask that Mr Nitas and [Hillview’s owner] the Ross Trust extend the same courtesies towards the community (“State urged to buy quarry” The News 17/3/20). Given the overwhelming negative response by the community towards the proposed putrescible tip development on adjacent land a few years ago and the recent knock-backs by both Mornington Peninsula Shire and VCAT concerning the new quarry application, why is Mr Nitas and the Ross Trust having such difficulties in understanding that the community just does not want any environmentally destructive industrial development to go ahead at this location? At all. Ever. The best possible action by the Ross Trust would be for the trustees to show their understanding, support and goodwill by protecting the bushland concerned in perpetuity; either as part of the surrounding state park or as the R E Ross Trust Conservation Zone. The trust would then play a leading role in recognising the biodiversity, conservation and environmental worth of this forest as part of the Mornington Peninsula biolink. This action would, understandably, be worthy of community support and goodwill. Wilga Kottek, Main Ridge

Pool a loss I was most surprised to find the Crib Point (open air) pool shut without notice on Monday (16 March) morning. Meanwhile, the enclosed Pelican pool complex in Hastings remains open.

To avoid an infection who would choose a Hastings pool over Crib Point? High-handed and hypocritical the management took the opportunity to cut its losses in lowly Crib Point, wilfully overriding the welfare needs of the community. Peg McGuire, Crib Point Editor: Mornington Peninsula Shire issued a statement saying the following centres would be closed from Tuesday 17 March: Libraries in Mornington, Rosebud, Somerville and Hastings, and the mobile library; Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery; Pelican Park Recreation Centre, Civic Reserve Recreation Centre and Somerville Recreation and Community Centre; tourist Information Centre in Dromana

Stimulus off target The only part of the federal government’s $17.6 billion targeted stimulus package that will work is the $750 payments for around 6.5 million Australians, including 2.4 million pensioners. This will help Australians who need it, while improving the cash flow in our economy. It will stimulate the economy. The rest of the package will go to the wayside and will not keep people in jobs ($25,000 for businesses is only a pittance and will be used by most in a week). Subsidies for appretices will only last until the work runs out and the business will not be able to support their half salary and will put them off. Accelerated depreciation will get lost in the financial statements and do nothing to keep people employed; nor will tax incentives. The only way is to get money into the hands of those who will spend it. I get a partial pension and the $1500 Jan and I get will not change our spending patterns. What would

we spend it on? The rich aristocrats on part pensions will not even see a blip n their bank balances. No one on a part pension should get any money for stimulation as, most likely, it will not increase spending. The only way to stimulate the economy is to get dollars into it quickly. How about some solar incentives? Jo Lenzo, Safety Beach

Keep Centrelink open After learning of Services Australia’s decision to close the Centrelinkoffice at Mornington at the end of march, I felt disappointment and anger at our federal government (“Centrelink rally cancelled” The News 17/3/20). How could it even contemplate such a cruel and insensitive decision? The impacts of this will be adverse and profound as vulnerable and marginalised people of all ages will have to commute to Frankston or Rosebud. This will also put more pressure on Cntrelink staff at these locations who are already stretched to th limit. This atrocious and decision must be overturned. John Antoine, Hastings

State of shame Wow, what an amazing acting, directing of the series “Stateless” being shown on ABC-TV. It is compelling viewing, although I now, by choice, watch it on Iview during the day as I couldn’t sleep after watching the first episode. Thank you Cate Blanchett and your co-writers and the ABC for screening this harrowing depiction on what this country has been doing, and continues to do, to innocent refugees. Shame on the religious zealots currently in charge of this once great country. When is someone going to take Australia to the International Court of Justice in The Hague and charge our Australian government with the continuing inhumane treatment of “our refugees”. Denise Hassett, Mount Martha

Election hangover I have been criticised for praising our local member, [Flinders MP] Greg Hunt for his handling of the coronavirus. I guess [the letter’s author] Marg D’Arcy is still trying to get over her defeat at the 2016 election in Kooyong as a candidate for the Labor Party. Bill Holmes, Sorrento

Help for wildlife I would like to report a fantastic effort made by my local coffee shop. Due to the devastating fires that destroyed our state the owners wanted to have a night to raise money for the animals that had been affected by the fires and who will need ongoing support. Unfortunately, the night did not go ahead due to lack of numbers. Not to be denied, the owners of Merchant and Makers decided to donate all the profits made on Monday’s public holiday (one of the busiest days of the year) to Wildlife Victoria The amount raised is over $2000 which is an amazing gift from the owners. Thank you Michelle and Marcus. Richard Fardell, McCrae

Check the reality It is high time our planning laws caught up to reality. Again we have a heritage building put in peril because of our planning processes. The Continental Hotel in Sorrento is such a case. Any developer proposing planning changes, and receiving them, should first have to satisfy authorities that their pockets are deep enough to finish any such project (“Hotel ‘clean’ and up for sale, again” The News 17/3/20). Now we have a building open to the elements and a ugly scar on the Mornington Peninsula. I see the whole thing as a great disgrace and the private wealth of whoever is responsible person should be used to at least make the heritage building safe for future generations. Rupert Steiner, Balnarring Beach

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25 March 2020

PAGE 13


NEWS DESK Five arrested over abalone haul FISHERIES officers have arrested five men and seized their car for allegedly taking 399 blacklip abalone from waters around Cape Schanck. Victorian Fisheries Authority director Ian Parks said 12 Fisheries officers backed up by police caught the “highly organised illegal fishing syndicate” from Pakenham, Cranbourne East and Botanic Ridge, Wednesday 18 March. “This type of alleged illegal fishing has the potential to do serious damage to the sustainability of Victoria’s abalone population, which is highly valued by commercial and recreational fishers,” Mr Parks said. Officers said they saw four men walk from the car park down to the rocks leaving one as a lookout. Three men were allegedly in the water for several hours diving for abalone while the fourth kept lookout. Officers swooped when the men returned and allegedly stowed a large bag of abalone in their car boot. Mr Parks said the offenders ran away “not making it far with others hiding in dense scrub nearby until being arrested”. Officers allege 315 abalone were found in the boot with two more bags of 84 abalone found in the water. Of these 263 were said to be undersize. After the arrests the abalone were returned to the water alive and the men taken to Rosebud police station. They were charged under the Fisheries Act with taking and possessing a commercial quantity of a priority species, trafficking a commercial quantity of a priority species, and obstructing and hindering authorised officers.

Measured approach: Diving archaeology students on site as Heritage Victoria research vessel Trim and Flinders University’s Tom Thumb stand by. Students measuring the ship’s sternpost. Pictures: Kevin Edwards (left) and Maddy McAllister (above)

Rye wreck reveals shipbuilder’s secrets Stephen Taylor steve@mpnews.com.au A STUDY of the wreck of a small Australian-built ship off Rye has helped Flinders University maritime archaeology students reveal more of the history of early timber vessels in Victoria. The students from South Australia partnered with Heritage Victoria and the community-based Maritime Archaeology Association of Victoria to investigate the wreck of the Barbara sunk near the pier in 1853. The ship was built along the Tamar

River in Tasmania by Joseph Hind in 1841 and operated as a lime trader in Port Phillip. The making of lime and its shipment to Melbourne for brickmaking was one of the southern peninsula’s early industries. The maritime archaeology field school’s 15 undergraduate students worked alongside maritime archaeological professionals from around Australia as well as the US, Thailand, Singapore, Japan and the Netherlands. Flinders University associate professor in marine archaeology Wendy Van Duivenvoorde says measured drawings, photographs and underwater photogrammetry were used to

record the wreck while a survey team mapped the surrounding land and seascapes. “We also excavated small sections of the wreck that allowed us to document the construction methods and wood species used,” she said. Heritage Victoria’s boat Trim was used to carry personnel and equipment to the wreck site, and act as a dive and safety platform for divers working on the site. Wood, metal and fibre samples collected from the wreck have already shown that the Barbara was built from timbers found in Victoria, NSW, northern Australia, Western Australia

as well as Tasmanian blue gum. “This is possibly the first time such a wide variety of timbers have been found in an Australian built vessel,” Ms Van Duivenvoorde said. “It indicates that early shipbuilders had developed a detailed knowledge of the properties of indigenous timbers appropriate for shipbuilding. “We are still waiting for the results from the metal and fibre analysis.” Data collected will be included in Heritage Victoria’s records and added to the story of Australia’s history. A report will be compiled later this year.

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PAGE 14

Southern Peninsula News

25 March 2020

Two street frontages

Jamie Stuart 0412 565 562 Tanya Scagliarini 0438 289 859 4/230 Main Street, Mornington, 3931


100 YEARS AGO THIS WEEK...

A Langwarrin fire - police prosecution Compiled by Cameron McCullough POLICE V. GRIFFITH, charged that he did unlawfully ignite certain inflammable material whereby the property of one, Jos. Baker, was damaged. Sub-Inspector Trainor conducted the prosecution, and Mr. Backhouse appeared for the defence. Fredk. Merrit, residing at Langwarrin, said that on the 10th February last, between 7 and 8 o’clock p.m. he noticed a fire start on Griffiths’ property, about 300 yards distant from witness. On the following day he noticed a kind of haze over the place where the fire had been, and having occasion to get on to the roof of his dwelling to fasten a loose sheet of iron, he distinctly saw a smoulder where the fire had been the previous evening. Witness decided not to leave his home that day. About 1 o’clock that afternoon a fire sprang up in Griffith’s property, and burned fiercely. Witness saw Griffith and his two men at the fire, and he said to Griffith: “Can you manage?” There was no ploughed ground where the fire started. To the Bench—Griffiths’ property was near the Government plantation. Cross-examined, witness said he had a law suit with Griffith some time ago, but as far as he was concerned it was a case of “forget and forgive.” Witness admitted having threatened further legal proceedings at a later date. Witness had lighted fires this summer, but had done so on ploughed ground. Griffith did not advise witness to remove a cart out of the scrub, and wit-

ness did not tell a man named Smythe that he was going to get a “tenner” out of Griffith if the cart got burned. Joseph W. Baker deposed that on the 10th February, at 9 o’clock at night he noticed a fire on the property lately bought by Griffith, and between 10 and 11 next morning he saw dense smoke arising from the same spot, and from there the fire broke out and spread, destroying property owned by witness to the value of £25. He lost 50 new posts, 50 old posts, wire netting and fencing wire, and 60 acres of grass. Witness saw Griftith that day when he said he lighted the fire to get a newly-calved cow out of the scrub. Griffith did not notify witness of intention to burn. The area swept by the fire was between 600 and 700 acres. Witness was on friendly terms with Griffith. Cross-examined – When witness saw the fire on Tuesday night he did not think it worth while to go down and investigate. He told Mr. Hartland there was not much danger of the fire getting into the plantation. Witness had suffered a loss through his scrub being burned, as it was not ready. His land carried 5 head of cattle. His stock was grazing on the roads until 3 months ago. Griffith complained to witness about a cow with a bell. Witness did a bit of burning this summer. People were continuously burning. Constable Dyball stated he inter-

viewed Griffith on the 12th February, when he said he did not know how the fire had originated. He said he had lighted a fire on the previous night to get a cow out of the scrub, but had extinguished it before leaving, and had visited the place next morning to make sure that all was safe. Cross-examined, witness said Griffths’ house was a quarter-of-a-mile from the fire. His own property was not in great danger. This closed the case for the prosecution. Herbert Fredk. Griffith, defendant, said on Tuesday, 10th February, he dropped a match into the scrub to make a cow come out. He gained his object and then put the fire out, remaining until 10 o’clock at night until everything, was absolutely safe. He went back next morning and there was not a vestige of fire to be seen. That afternoon, when driving into Frankston with Mrs. Griffith, he noticed smoke arising, and remarking to his wife that he was afraid a bush fire had broken out, he returned and did what he could to fight it. Baker told witness that he had lost 15 posts in the fire. He also told witness that after a certain party had passed along that day three fires had sprung up. Cross-examined – The scrub where witness dropped a match was fairly green, and that fire had burned about a chain square. He remained watching the fire until 10 o’clock at night, and was there when Mrs. Griffith came

down to him. He beat the fire out and left no roots or ti-tree smouldering. He lit the fire in the gully where everything was too green to burn much. There were no dry logs about and no fallen timber. The fire next day started five or six chains away from this spot. As a practical man, witness knew that fire travelled in dry county but not in green undergrowth such as was in the gully referred to. To the Bench—There was scrub between the fire in the gully and the spot where the fire occurred the next day. Henry Reynolds, said he was in employ of Griffiths, and he knew nothing about the fire in the gully, but next day he assisted to put out a fire which sprang up in the day time. Mrs. Griffith, wife of defendant said that when she left the place where the fire had been in the gully, with her husband, everything was absolutely safe, and there was no sign of fire. The fire next day was 4 or 5 chains away from this spot, and a little up the rise. The Bench held that there was no evidence to show that the fire lighted by defendant caused the conflagration that damaged Baker next day. The case was dismissed. *** Cr H. E. Unthank was able to return to his home on Thursday, 11th inst., after several weeks in St. Pancras Private Hospital. *** MR L. J. Ward, who recently underwent an operation in Lancewood

Private Hospital, Kew, has found it necessary to again enter the institution named owing to a recurrence of his trouble. *** Cr F. H. Wells leaves on Monday to attend the annual conference of Rechabites at Stawell. *** THE monthly meeting of the Frankston Progress Association takes place next Tuesday evening. *** THE Frankston Brass Band played several selections in Bay Street last Sunday afternoon. *** ATTENTION is directed to the extended advertisement appearing in our front page relating to the Pier Tea House, Frankston, of which Mr H. Vicars is the proprietor. *** MR H. Vicars, secretary of the Frankston Branch of the R.S.S.I.L.A., has now received sample blankets which the Defence Department proposes to sell to returned soldiers. Same may now be inspected at the Pier Tea House. *** ATTENTION is drawn in this issue of our journal to the advertisement appearing on behalf of Messrs A. H. McDonald and Co. This firm is making a special appeal to those who require engines for power purposes. *** FROM the pages of the Mornington Standard, 19 March 1920

TEMPORARY CLOSURE

Image: Patrick Pound’s A Collection of Stranger Things install, Photo: Mark Ashkanasay

Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery is closed to the public, in response to Coronavirus (COVID-19), until further notice. Even though the gallery doors are temporarily closed, MPRG will continue to share the collection, exhibitions, stories, public programs and children’s activities online. Please visit our virtual gallery for ideas on creative activities to do at home with the kids, exhibition tours, artist talks and more:

mprg.mornpen.vic.gov.au

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25 March 2020

PAGE 15


PUZZLE ZONE 1

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ACROSS 1. Boat carnival 4. French pancake 7. Entail 8. Candle strings 9. Wine vessel 12. Reconstructs 15. Rush headlong (of herd) 17. Golden hue

18. Bookcase part 21. Unknowing 22. Gnat-like fly 23. Removing completely

DOWN 1. Extremists 2. Yearly 3. Troubles 4. Ship’s company 5. Rigidly 6. Henhouse produce 10. Miscalculated 11. Monastery

13. Depositing roe (of fish) 14. Diluted, ... down 16. Stares angrily 18. Molten metal impurities 19. Seethe 20. Gain consciousness

Puzzles supplied by Lovatts Publications Pty Ltd www.lovattspuzzles.com See page 19 for solutions.

THE MEANING OF EXISTENCE... AND OTHER SHORT STORIES

Love in the Time of Coronavirus By Stuart McCullough IT was a routine trip to the supermarket. Trouble was, I was about five days too late. Having refused to succumb to panic, I was instead faced with having my choices substantially limited. The place was eerily quiet. Much as when you go anywhere that has recently experienced something deeply traumatic, everyone looked a little shell-shocked. I’d seen footage of people coming to blows in order to secure a packet of 2-ply but it’d been hard to believe. I’m not sure what this says about us as a nation, but we’re far less prepared for a zombie apocalypse than I’d thought. There was no rice. Or, at least, there was no ‘traditional’ rice but lots and lots of microwave rice. Clearly, whatever our dystopian future has in store for us, it will not include a microwave. I’ve no idea what has to happen for the nation’s microwaves to all stop working, but some people are obviously picturing a future without electricity and are ready to start preparing their meals over an open fire. Alternatively, rather than ‘survival’ mode, a fair number of people have accidentally gone in to ‘Survivor’ mode, where all they ever do is eat rice and sleep outdoors. It’s a mistake that anyone can make. If a member of your family tells you that you’ve been voted off the island, feel free to correct them. There was very little pasta. Except for angel hair pasta – which is obviously way too fancy and fiddly for a lock-down situation – and gnocchi. I’m not sure what panic purchas-

PAGE 16

Southern Peninsula News

ers especially have against gnocchi. Too starchy, perhaps? I can imagine someone standing in the pasta section; cramming spaghetti, penne, fettuccine, rigatoni, macaroni, tagliatelle, linguine and pappardelle into their trolley, but leaving the gnocchi behind for fear of going overboard. Perhaps they feel that pasta is the secret to beating this thing. Forget 25 March 2020

washing your hands, carb loading is the way to go. There were no walnuts. For the love of everything I hold sacred, what possessed my fellow citizens to hoard all the walnuts and, in doing so, deprive walnut-lovers such as myself to go without? Clearly, having elected to eat pasta for the next three decades, they’ve decided a Waldorf

salad is the perfect side dish. Or, in the event that you do have to self-isolate, there’s never going to be a better time to bake. Perhaps that was the reason there was so little flour left. People want to bake and definitely not make their own gnocchi. Maybe people are simply looking ahead. The fiscal outlook is nothing if not uncertain and negative growth is a distinct possibility. But as bleak as things may be, there’s always the chance of a baking-led recovery. I, for one, don’t know what the nation’s economy is going to look like when we come out the other side of this thing, but I do know that we’ll be perfectly placed to run a cake stall so large that you’ll be able to see it from space. Sponge cake is recession proof. That’s a fact. Then I stumbled across what once would have been the toilet paper isle. All that remained was shelving. The only people in the aisle were there to take photos. I’d heard of runs on banks during the Great Depression, but clearly some people are preparing for runs of a completely different kind. The evidence suggests that some folks have drastically misunderstood the symptoms of corona virus. It goes to show where our priorities lie. Forget bottled water and canned tomatoes – just make sure I can continue to go to the lav in relative comfort and I’m as good as set in the event of a shut-in. Given that the will of the nation has been so clearly been expressed, it’d be foolish not to listen. Indeed, it’s only a matter of

time before we ditch the cute looking fauna and crown a packet of Sorbent silky-white 2-ply as our national symbol. In future, political parties will run on platforms that promise an uninterrupted supply of loo rolls. Fringe parties will promise out-house stationery for everyone, regardless of cost. But not everyone is impacted. My father did National Service back in the 1950s. He often used to tell his children that at Puckapunyal, toilet paper was rationed out at two sheets per man per day. Originally, I had misheard ‘sheet’ and regarded the arrangements as a little on the generous side. Once I realized that the term was, in fact, ‘sheet’, I was mortified. It simply didn’t seem possible. I lived in terror that my father would introduce a similar rule in our house – for there could be no other reason for bringing it up so often – and that my profligate habits on the thunder-box would be exposed. Humiliation would inevitably follow. But it made me realize – my father has been preparing for this moment his entire life. While others are losing their minds with panic, my father can rest assured that a single roll will take him comfortably through to 2025. These are strange times. Perhaps it’s no surprise that people do whatever they can to prepare for what is, in truth, unprecedented. But if the run on our supermarkets shows anything, it’s that people are ready to take action. Hopefully, that’s something that will hold us all in good stead. Best wishes to all. And bon appetite. stuart@stuartmccullough.com


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Southern Peninsula News

25 March 2020

PAGE 17


SOUTHERN PENINSULA NEWS

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First winner: Mornington-based apprentice jockey Kiran Quilty rides her first winner at Avoca aboard the Shane Nicholstrained Kurocaine. Running double: The Amy and Ash Yargi training partnership score a winning double at their home track on Mornington Cup day. Pictures: Supplied

Yargi Racing two good on Cup day HORSE RACING

By Ben Triandafillou IT was a day to remember for the Mornington-based training partnership of Amy and Ash Yargi who scored a winning double on Mornington Cup day on Saturday 21 March. Despite racing without a crowd, the Yargi Racing team were thrilled to land back-to-back winners at their home track of Mornington as the inform mare, Jamaican Hurry, and the enigmatic, I’m Telling Ya, rose to the fore in races two and three. Co-trainer Amy Yargi said it was an odd feeling to see Mornington so empty on its featured Cup meeting but was glad that racing was still able to go ahead. “Ash and I were just saying before that it feels just like trackwork unfortunately,” Amy Yargi said post-race. “We’re taking it all very seriously. We’re very grateful that we are still racing and it’s nice to get a winner on Mornington Cup day.” The five-year-old mare, Jamaican Hurry, kicked off the stable’s day with a blistering victory in the Fillies and Mares benchmark 70 race. Settling at the rear of the field, the lightly raced mare came with a barnstorming finish to nab the win in the final couple of strides when the Pat Carey-trained Ultra Smart looked to have the race allbut locked up. The win made it back-to-back victories for Jamaican Hurry after scoring an impressive win at Flemington at her prior start.

PAGE 18

Southern Peninsula News

Yargi said it’s just taken some time for the daughter of Von Costa de Hero to start hitting her straps. “We’ve always had a lot of faith in her,” she said. “She’s been a long time coming but we’ve always thought that she was capable of this. “I’m wrapped that the owners persevered with her and it’s lovely to see her start putting it altogether.” Jockey Dean Yendall, who rode Jamaican Hurry to victory, struck again while the iron was hot to score a much-deserved victory with the ever25 March 2020

consistent gelding, I’m Telling Ya. Also settling at the rear of the field, the six-year-old gelding looked to be struggling to keep in contact with the field heading into the home bend before really picking up and letting loose in the straight. Despite having not won in almost three years, the son of Reward for Effort came home like a steam train to score a dominant victory in the third race. Yargi was stoked to finally see her $20,000 bargain-buy break through again after placing eight times since

his last win in September, 2017. “We’ve started calling him ‘I’m Teasing Ya’ at home because he looms up, runs the quickest times of the race every single week and just can’t quite get there. He’s as honest as anything but we’re just so thrilled for him to finally break through again after such a long time,” she said. “We love him. He’s the nicest horse and he’s just a pleasure to have around. He’s a real gentleman – my little boy Tommy can even lead him around. We’ve brought a packet of li-

corice for him to have after today if he won so we better live up to our side of the deal.” I’m Telling Ya, who now holds a record of four wins and 13 placings from 37 starts, has earnt just over $235,000 for connections. For the Mornington Cup itself, the Michael Moroney-trained import, Aktau, scored a determined one-length victory over the Busuttin/Youngtrained Inverloch and the fast-finishing Terry Kelly-trained, Skelm. The victory in the Listed Mornington Cup provides the import with a free-ticket into the Group 1 Caulfield Cup in the Spring. Pat Carey finished fourth again this year with Stars of Carrum running a solid race from the back of the field. While the race favourite, Just Benjamin, from the Anthony Freedman yard faded to finish in seventh with jockey Ben Melham reporting that the gelding raced keenly in blinkers and recommended they be removed next start. But a post-race endoscopy did detect a degree of internal exercise induced pulmonary haemorrhage which may have affected his performance. Also on Saturday 21 March, Mornington-based apprentice jockey, Kiran Quilty, landed her first race win at Avoca aboard Kurocaine for her boss Shane Nichols. Quilty led from start to finish aboard the four-year-old son of Kuroshio to score a dominant twoand-a-half length victory at her sixth career ride.


SOUTHERN PENINSULA NEWS scoreboard

Saints paid £75,000 for Heaton SOCCER

By Craig MacKenzie MORNINGTON import Josh Heaton cost Scottish Premier League club St Mirren £75,000 in June 2018. The then 21-year-old became the most expensive signing in 25 years for the Buddies but the following year he joined Darlington on a free. “A lot of it comes down to the manager really and sometimes it just happens that way,” Heaton said. The young central defender is among thousands of players in Britain subject to the vagaries of the professional game and a look at his CV highlights the circuitous route he has taken to arrive at Dallas Brooks Park. Heaton is from Preston in Lancashire and came through Preston North End’s academy before signing pro forms in July 2015. Here’s what transpired after that: He joined Tamworth on loan in November 2015, Colne on loan in March 2016, Droylsden on a free in August 2016, Stalybridge Celtic on a free in October 2016, Bamber Bridge on a free in July 2017, Ramsbottom on a free in October 2017, Darlington on a free in November 2017, St Mirren for £75,000 in June 2018, Kidderminster on loan in June 2019, Darlington on a free in August 2019 and Bradford Park Avenue on a free last September. Former Celtic and Everton defender Alan Stubbs was St Mirren manager when Heaton penned a three-year deal at Love Street. Stubbs claimed St Mirren beat off competition from English Premier League and Championship clubs to sign the highly-rated Heaton. “I’m absolutely delighted,” Stubbs said at the time. “It’s a sign of intent and I’d like to thank the board for putting their trust in me. “You only have to look at the clubs who were wanting to get Josh, and to have got him is quite a coup.” Stubbs was sacked after four league games and last year the club released its star signing. But the direction of Heaton’s career changed dramatically thanks to a chance conversation a couple of months ago with a friend in Preston. This led to his move here as that friend also knew Mornington assistant coach Nathan Peel and striker Josh Hine. “I’d thought about coming to Australia for the past couple of years but everything happened really quickly once I’d actually decided to come over here,” Heaton said.

From Saints to Seagulls: Mornington import Josh Heaton (left) in FFA Cup action against Altona East Phoenix. Picture: John Punshon

“I applied for my visa and that came through within a few days and the next thing I knew my flight was booked for about three weeks later so within about a month I was here.” He arrived on Sunday 8 March and six days later played his first match for the Seagulls in a 2-1 FFA Cup win at home against Altona East Phoenix. It was 0-0 at half-time and Altona East Phoenix took the lead in the second half before a Hine double settled the issue. Heaton played in a central midfield role in the first half before switching to his preferred central defensive role in the second period. “I found it quite easy in the first half and to be honest I thought we were cruising,” he said. “We should have been two or three up at half-time then they scored a fluke goal from inside their own half and that completely changed it. “I went back to centre half and that’s my natural position. “We changed to three at the back and I enjoyed it and we went on to deservedly win the game.” The match gave Heaton an insight into the standard here and he’s confident that he’ll quickly adapt. “There’s not the same pressure here as you’d get back in the UK and it’s not as physical but there’s still pressure on me to perform because people see your CV and they expect big

things. “I’m just looking forward to being here, to getting my head down and working hard and enjoying my football. “I’m here to play well but I’m not here thinking I’m some sort of amazing footballer or anything like that. It’s not my style.” The transition from professional football in the UK to semi-professional ranks in Victoria’s State 1 South-East has been seamless so far for Heaton. That’s a measure of the way his teammates have welcomed him into their ranks. “They’re my type of lads to be honest. Everyone’s been so nice and helpful and although I haven’t been here for long I already know that I want to stay here. “I’ve got the impression that Mornington is a family club which is something I really like. “I think I’ve come to the perfect club for me and the perfect set-up.” But there’s a sombre mood at the club right now. Heaton arrived at Mornington a day after long-time team manager Tony McKay had collapsed and was rushed to hospital. McKay died in the early hours of Sunday 15 March and his funeral was held today (Tuesday). Due to the coronavirus pandemic numbers at today’s funeral had to be

capped at 15 and attendance was by invitation only. Mornington explained the situation on its facebook page: “The club would like to advise that due to the current climate the wake will also be put on hold until we can honour Tony with the proper memorial he deserves. “We appreciate that in this tough time some people will be upset by this message but hope that when the time is right we can all get together to celebrate such a great man.” Meanwhile Somerville playercoach Dave Greening has a plan for re-organising the 2020 and 2021 seasons. The teacher at Boneo Primary School is experienced in arranging sports events and believes that cooperation between local soccer, footy and cricket clubs is key to leading both codes back to normalcy. “My suggestion is starting both the local footy and soccer seasons on the first weekend in June,” Greening said. “This will give both codes 22 weekends to complete seasons by the end of October. “Cricket season is put back to the start of November with all teams playing each other twice but in just one-dayers as a one off. “Excluding the two-week break over Xmas this would give cricket 18 Saturdays to complete their season on 20 March.

“The 2021 footy and soccer seasons then begin on the first weekend in April next year when normal service is resumed. “Obviously this is subject to all being well and us all being able to resume playing, coaching and supporting the clubs and sports we love from the start of June this year. “But all sports need to come together for the greater good and support each other where we can all benefit and enable the continuation of local sports and clubs when safe to do so. “I just hope that common sense among the powers that be can prevail once we are on the other side of this thing.” Greening also wants FV’s competitions department to consider revisiting their fixture strategy. “We shouldn’t have catch-up rounds in a normal season anyway. I’m not aware of other countries doing it,” he said. “We should be playing on Saturday and Monday across Easter weekends, for example, with local derbies organised for Mondays like they do in the UK. “Imagine having Rosebud v Mount Martha at 12pm, Baxter v Somerville at 3pm and Skye v Strikers at 6pm on an Easter Monday. “This surely would bring in muchneeded revenue for those clubs.” In other news it was expected that Football Federation Australia would make a major announcement about the A-League, state NPL and grassroots competitions as we went to press. Many clubs have expressed dismay at FV’s continuing fees and charges while revenue streams have dried up but it’s understood that the national body was due to address that situation in an announcement impacting all levels of the sport.

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Southern Peninsula News

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