Star Weekly - Sunbury Macedon Ranges - 19th March 2024

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Chopping locks for change

With his dark blond hair getting longer every day, an 11-year-old from Sunbury is counting down the days until he shaves off his beloved mullet.

Parting with your hair is a decision not many kids – or even adults – can make, but it was an easy one for Charlie Butler.

It was born out of a desire to ignite a conversation about men’s mental health and raise money for those struggling, after Charlie’s father took his own life in March 2023.

While Charlie will miss his mullet, he said he wants to inspire anyone struggling with their mental health.

“It makes me feel sad that some men don’t share their problems,” he said.

Charlie said he hopes men will continue to open up about their mental health and talk to people, including therapists, about their struggles.

■ Continued: Page 10.

A cause for concern

Kids Helpline has released a significant impact report revealing a 72 per cent increase in contacts for suicide-related issues for outer regional or remote young people from 2019 to 2023, while their counterparts in major cities recorded a 10 per cent increase.

Speaking to these statistics, which were released on Monday, March 11, a local mental health expert said the spike is ‘disturbing’ but ‘no surprise’.

The chief executive from charity Youth Live4Life Bernard Galbally, who is also a

Woodend local, said while regional areas can be fantastic to grow up in, certain factors from the regions can impact residents’ mental health.

“What Kids HelpLine has shown doesn’t surprise me at all… [but] it is very disturbing figures. We have been seeing these figures or similar data coming through,” Mr Galbally said.

“Unfortunately, we find in rural communities, eight out of 10 most disadvantaged areas in Victoria, are rural and regional.

“Living in a rural community can be

fantastic…. but there are unfortunately some other things that can impact someone’s mental health.

“The sense of isolation, lack of connection, poorer access to services… we’re seeing the cost of living increase… we’ve got a climate crisis. I think the world our young people are growing up in is much more complex.”

Mr Galbally said all of these challenges can beexacerbatedbytheother-forexampleifyou need to attend an appointment in Melbourne, a tight household budget and stretch on petrol can impact how often you use this service.

“The other thing I would say, that

post-COVID has exacerbated, is being able to have good continuity of care,“ he said.

“Unfortunately, workforce shortages and trying to recruit people into a rural community is challenging at the best of times and often people have short term contracts like 12 months.”

According to Kids Helpline, the top five concerns why rural and remote young people contacted them was suicide-related concerns (26.3 per cent), mental health concerns (25 per cent) and emotional wellbeing (23.1 per cent).

■ Continued: Page 3.

19 MARCH, 2024 Established in 1981 as the proudly serving Sunbury and Macedon Ranges 12676586-AA12-24
Charlie, 11, and his mum Katherine Butler. (Damjan Janevski) 394061_02

Carer shortage a ‘perfect storm’

A leading family services agency is calling on familiesinHumeandthewesternmetroregion of Melbourne to consider fostering a child, amidadropinfosterenquiriestoa20-yearlow.

ChildandfamilyservicesorganisationBerry Street has about 600 careers, and need at least another 60 to 70 across the state.

Executive director of strategic engagement HeidiReidsaidBerryStreetis ‘desperate’forat least five more careers in Hume.

“In Hume, Wyndham and Melton in particular, the team was saying they are

desperate for about [15] new carriers across those areas,” Ms Reid said. “They are after five new careers in Hume, five in Wyndham and five in Melton. They’re really keen for carers that can do short term or long term.”

Ms Reid said that with more than 500 of the 12,000 plus children in government care in Victoria living in non-home-based care options, immediate action was needed.

“Everychildhastherighttoasafe,nurturing childhood,” she said.

“There is a critical need to provide a community of support for at-risk children and young people and we want to ensure they

know that their right to safety and stability are a priority.”

Ms Reid said the increased need for careers isn’t because people don’t want to help, but it’s due to a range of factors including cost of living pressures, post-COVID uncertainty and different home working environments.

“Theeconomicuncertaintyandtheincreased costoflivingisplayingapartinpeopleperhaps beingnotasconfidentinmakinglargedecisions that impact their family.

“So it’s a little bit of a perfect storm and that we’ve got more kids needing carers and more people perhaps holding off on decisions

‘‘ 40 per cent of Hume’s bin contents are food scraps, contributing to harmful emissions in landfills ’’ - Naim Kurt

New green bin a win-win, says mayor

Every household in Hume will be provided with a food and garden (green) bin this year, as it becomes part of council’s standard kerbside waste service in July.

Council announced the update to its service in late February, which will allow residents to recycle their food scraps and garden clippings in their green bin, rather than send them to landfill.

Hume mayor Naim Kurt said this change will align with the state government’s recycling policy, which requires a mandatory food and

garden service for all households by 2030.

“Currently, 40 per cent of Hume’s bin contents are food scraps, contributing to harmful emissions in landfills,” he said.

“Introducing the green bin service not only fights climate change but will also cut costs by reducing the $129.27 per tonne waste levy that council pays to the state government.

“Through this initiative, food and garden waste will be transformed into soil conditioner that will benefit Victoria’s gardens and farms.”

This change will reduce emissions as when

food and other organic material breaks down in landfill it creates methane, a harmful greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change.

The new bins will be delivered to the remaining households between April and June this year, and nothing will change for households that already have a green bin.

Bin days and collection frequencies will remainthesame.Garbagewillstillbecollected weekly, and the green bins will be collected every two weeks, alternating with recycling.

because of uncertainty and challenges in their own environment.

“We are… finding that there has been a drop in the enquiries that are coming through for people to become foster carers. It’s at a 20-year low at the moment.”

Ms Reid said anyone can foster, and encouraged curious residents to find out about the different opportunities available.

“Historically people think that you have to have a partner, you have to have kids, you have to not have kids… and that’s not true at all.

“We actually want the carers to reflect [the] diversity that exists in the community.”

Doubling down on wins

Residents can now enjoy safer, smoother journeys through Darraweit Guim thanks to key intersection and footpath upgrades completed in February.

Within about three weeks, the intersection of Bolinda-Darraweit Road and Darraweit Valley Road received a refreshed road surface, better drainage and a new raised pedestrian crossing for safer connections to the nearby primary school.

Separately but within a similar timeframe, 150 metres of new concrete footpath was delivered further along Bolinda-Darraweit Road.

These works refreshed a deteriorating asphalt section of footpath to provide a continuous, smoother concrete connection between the school and Darraweit Guim Town Hall.


Shane Walden said council worked closely with contractors of both works to minimise disruption and contain works largely within school holidays.

“This is a great example of contractors and council working together to bring forward a positive outcome for the community,” he said.

“In this case [it was for] a much-improved intersection for road users and safer connections for pedestrians “We’d like to thank the Australian government for their funding support, the contractors for their prompt and quality delivery, and the Darraweit Guim community for their patience during the works.”

The intersection works were supported by funding through phase four of the federal government’s Local Road and Community Infrastructure Program.

Both the intersection and footpath works were identified as priorities in council’s 2023-24 Capital Works Program.

Concern over firewood supply sparks debate in parliament

Northern Victoria MP Gaelle Broad has raised concerns about the lack of available firewood, following the commencement of the collection season on March 1.

MsBroadspokeabouttheissueinparliament on March 6 on behalf of a constituent, and called for the Minister for Environment to secure Victoria’s future firewood supplies.

“The action I seek is for the minister to… extend the firewood collection season and enable the collection of free firewood in areas with fallen trees after the recent storms, especially where there is community benefit,”

shesaid.“Inmanyregionalareaspeoplerelyon firewood for heating as electricity and gas bills continue to rise under this government.

“The 2024 autumn firewood collection season… runs until June 30, and should be extended.”

Ms Broad referenced the 39-year-old man from Kyneton who was fined $3000 last month after he pleaded guilty to illegally cutting firewood on public land.

“The cost of firewood is skyrocketing, and some people are becoming so desperate that they are resorting to illegal firewood

collection,” she said. “I asked the minister a question about firewood supplies in October last year, and I am yet to receive a response.

“It appears as though the government has no plan for affordable firewood in Victoria. Winter is fast approaching, and Victoria is facing a significant firewood shortage.”

Ms Broad said the government’s website doesn’tguaranteefirewoodwillbeavailablefor collection in the domestic firewood collection areas after it has been opened.

“Free firewood zones are under pressure and commercial supplies are drying up.

“VicForests supply a large amount of commercial firewood, but with the closure of the sustainable native timber industry, these supplies are at risk.

“The government needs to secure Victoria’s firewood supplies, extend the season and enable the collection of free firewood in areas damaged in the recent storms where there is community benefit.”

Environment Minister Steve Dimopoulos was contacted for comment.

Hume mayor Cr Naim Kurt with the green bins that will be rolled out to the remaining households between April and June. (Damjan Janevski) 392679_01

Coles ticked off shopping list

Ahungerformoreconvenientgroceriesissoon to be satiated for Diggers Rest residents, with Coles announcing that a full-line supermarket for the township will soon be crossed off its shopping list.

Community advocates in Diggers Rest have longbeencallingforasupermarketinthetown which is currently only serviced by smaller grocery stores.

Earlier in the month an email screenshot was circulated by the DREAM advocacy group purported to be from a Coles Public Affairs advisor confirming land had been purchased by Coles within the Bloomdale development for a future supermarket.

Following an enquiry from Star Weekly, a Coles spokesperson confirmed the development.

“While it is still very early stages, we are excited about working with the local council and community to bring a new Coles supermarket to Diggers Rest in the coming years,” they said.

“We are still in the early stages of planning thisdevelopment,butwillkeepthecommunity updated as our plans progress.”

DREAM member John Verdon said the group was excited by the news.

“[No full-line supermarket] has slowed development, made it challenging to access a full range of affordably priced grocery products, limited access to local jobs for our

growingcommunityandreducedourabilityto be a self-sufficient suburb,” he said.

“[And] it is a big signal to the broader business community that Diggers Rest is open for business and there are many very good business opportunities to be had in the suburb.

“It is sincerely hoped that the announcement will trigger interest for others to invest. Of particular interest is the tavern or pub venue whichhaslonghadaplanningpermitbutisyet to be built.

“Wearehopefulthatwiththisannouncement, the council too will recognise the growth and endeavour to bring forward the delivery of our community centre an lynch pin of the “town centre “precinct.”

According to council’s Venture Melton

Top work in Top Design exhibition

Salesian College student Kayley Irvine created both a portfolio

animation for her trailer for the fictional video game Wattle in the VET Visual Communication Design category.

Kayley said she is looking forward to being able to meet all the other amazing artists, and will be attending the exhibition with her family and her friends.

“I think I entered into top designs to see if I’m capable if that makes sense. It’s really validatingtogetintothisexhibition,”shesaid.

“My process involves a lot of learning. I like to sketch while watching YouTube videos on art tips, trying to take little tidbits to add to my folio and work.”

Kayley said her animation illustrates a funny quoll, named Wattle, and her scramble to escape from a Tasmanian Devil after stealing its waratah flower.

“Wattle is a cartoon character design based on an Eastern quoll. Her exaggerated appearance helps emphasise a silly, laid-back attitude,” she said in her exhibitor statement.

Kayley said developing a concept is her favourite part of the creation process, and she recommendsEthanBecker’sYouTubechannel and the animator’s survival kit.

“Usually I have a lot of ideas and I just go all over the place,” she said. “With my character design I have half a sketchbook worth of development sketches I didn’t even put in my folio. It’s just fun.”

Top Designs 2024 is open from March 23, to July 14, at Melbourne Museum.

website, residents of Diggers Rest spent $190.62 million between November 2021 and October 2022, but currently only $22.37 million is spent locally.

Another long-time advocate for Diggers Rest development David O’Connor said Diggers Restisessentiallyconsideredtobea‘commuter town’.

“It’s hoped that this substantial investment will help to improve the balance of jobs to housing ratio and encourage additional investment opportunities within the area,” he said. “It’s well known that the neighbouring community of Sunbury has longed for the delivery of a second Coles store.

“As such, this comes as welcomed news, especially for the community of Diggers Rest.”

■ From page 1.

The head of Kids Helpline Tony FitzGerald said one of the drivers behind this increase in suicide-related contacts is probably due to the access young people have to services in those areas.

“In some instances Kids Helpline is the only place the young person feels like they can [get] ready access to for that support,” he said.

“But I think [it] is a positive that… there has been an increase in the numbers as well. What that tells us is that young people are more prepared to reach out for help when they need it.”

Mr FitzGerald said first and foremost, it’s important to continue to encourage young people in outer regional or remote areas to reach out to services like

“What we need to continue to support theseyoungpeopleisadditionalfunding so we can employ more counsellors to

“When you look at the nature of our service, we’re very scalable… there’s no need for governments to spend lots of money establishing very expensive on

“Kids Helpline is there 24 hours a day,

Kids Helpline is also tackling connectivity issues faced by rural communities through updating its self-help and support app, Niggle.

A cause for concern
100 McKenzie Street, Melton 9070 1960 Sam Rae Authorised by Sam Rae MP, 100 McKenzie Street Melton A TAX CUT FOR EVERY SINGLE TAXPAYER LABOR IS DELIVERING Use the tax calculator to find out how much you’ll get back ADVERTISEMENT 12625349-MS08-24 LANCEFIELD DISTRICT FARMERS MARKET CELEBRATING 21 YEARS OF TRADING THIS SATURDAY This Saturday 23rd March the Macedon Ranges favourite farmers market is back with a full line-up of super local & regional producers for you to select from! 21 years on, this market is pumping & we could not do it without you! 9am to 1pm High St, Lancefield Vic 3435 Phone for enquires 0493 452 757 12677159-AP12-24 Year-12 student Kayley. (Damjan Janevski) 394062_02
A Sunbury student’s work is set to be showcased at the Melbourne Museum when Top Designs returns for 2024. The exhibition will include creations of 87 exceptional exhibitors from more than 1000 applications of VCE and VCE VET design and technology students.

Council calls out levy cash grab

Hume council is demanding answers about the growing cost of the state government’s compulsory waste levy.

The waste levy has cost Hume $48 million since 2020.

Councillor Joseph Haweil said rises in the levy rate has meant council is spending far too much, without seeing the benefits.

“Ourcontributionstothelevyhaveincreased from $2 million in 2017-18, to $8.3 million in 2021-22,” he said.

“During our council term, we have now paid approximately $48 million in residents’ money

to the state government as part of this levy.

“Sowhenourresidentscomplainthatitistoo costly to go to the landfill to dispose of waste, they should know - 30 to 40 per cent of the entirechargeyoupayoutthegateisnotcouncil revenue,it’satax…thatgoesandflowsdirectly to the state government.”

The Municipal and Industrial Landfill Levy Trust currently contains $456 million, and exists to fund and support councils to manage landfills and waste, but Cr Haweil labelled the fund “severely underutilised”.

Thecouncilalsospent$4.7millionin2022-23 on cleaning up illegally dumped rubbish.


and we have made it very clear that we’ll crack down in the strongest way possible on those who engage in disgraceful conduct,” Cr Haweil said.

“It is interesting to draw a correlation as to whether we would have a different outcome if the 30 to 40 per cent of all fees collected were actually invested to support local councils… and the work we do to drive behavioural change.”

Hume has also had to pay the state government$6.8milliontoimportsoilintothe Sunbury Landfill as intermediate cover before the site enters remediation.

Cr Haweil called the payment a cash grab.

Lancefield market marks 21 years

What started as a tiny community project with just 23 stalls back in 2003, has blossomed in the last 21 years to host 85 local producers in a monthly market.

The Lancefield District Farmers’ Market will celebrate its 21st anniversary on Saturday, March 23, to recognise its growth to a vibrant farmers market showcasing producers from the local and wider region.

The market was launched by market manager Meggs Hannes as part of a personal development course with the goal to offer a viable trading space for local producers to trade with local people. “Twenty-one years on

[the project has]... its ever-growing selection of super local producers- many from Lancefield, Romsey, Sunbury, Newham and surrounding regions,” Ms Hannes said.

“Each month the market features new producers and this month is no exception.”

Sonia and Stuart of Chin Chin Farm will make their market debut this Saturday, with a diverse selection of bushfoods products, lavender oil and products, an infused honey range all produced on their Macedon Ranges farm.

Larder Mouse Farm’s Lucy and Barnaby Olsson of Newham will also be making their

market debut with rare breed, British White beef mixed boxes for sale.

Ms Hannes said the breed has been in existence since approximately the 1500s in the United Kingdom but severely declined to near extinction in the early 1900s.

“The market includes a seated lunch area at the east end as well as lunch options and picnic rugs at the west end under the lush canopy of the heritage listed centre plantation,” she said.

It runs from 9am to 1pm on the High Street of Lancefield. BYO bags, baskets and trolleys. Dogs are welcome on a leash, and there is free face-painting and live music.

“I am struggling to get my head around why we need to pay the Victorian Treasury $7 million to bring soil into a facility we own,” he said.

“It’s not contributing to landfill, it’s actually improving environmental outcomes by closing the landfill in the short and long term.

“I know of very many other good uses for $7 million across Sunbury and the rest of Hume.”

Hume council will write to the Environment Minister and local members asking for an exemption from the $6.8 million bill to cover the Sunbury Landfill with soil.

Environment Minister Steve Dimopoulous was contacted for comment.

Disaster risk reduced

Macedon Ranges council will receive $65,000 to purchase a generator as part of government funding to reduce the risk and impact of disasters.

Inajointfederalandstategovernment initiative, almost 50 projects across Victoria will be supported through the national partnership agreement on disaster risk reduction (NPA) to minimise the risk and impact of natural disasters on local communities.

As part of the risk and resilience grants program, Macedon Ranges council will purchase the generator to provide power for essential services in surrounding towns during extreme weather events.

State Emergency Services Minister Jaclyn Symes said the program highlights the incredible work local Victorian organisations are leading to reduce the risk of natural disasters and build resilience.

“We’ll never be able to eradicate natural disasters, however we can ensure local communities are better prepared for when they occur,” she said.

“I look forward to following the success of these crucial projects. The recipients of these grants are working incredibly hard to reduce risks and prepare Victorians for severe weather events.”

Federal Emergency Management Minister Murray Watt said the federal government is committed to working with the state government to make sure Victorians are more prepared for natural disasters.

“A significant focus of the NPA is to help locally-led organisations address the risks that they have identified, with solutions that will help them better prepare and respond,” he said.

Heart gift helps Bulla community take life-saving action

The Bulla community has welcomed a new heart-starting device, with a publicly accessible automated external defibrillator (AED) gifted as part of the Heart Safe Community program.

The program is a year-long, joint initiative between Ambulance Victoria (AV) and the Heart Foundation, which equips communities with the skills to take life-saving action when someone suffers a cardiac arrest.

Bulla’s new AED is located at The Black Horse Hotel, 80 Bulla Road, Bulla.

AV paramedic and Bulla Heart Safe Community program lead Kathryn Addicott said the new AED is an important step in boosting the town’s ability to respond to a cardiac arrest.

“AEDs are used to attempt to shock the heart back into rhythm following a cardiac arrest–which is when a person’s heart suddenly stops beating,” she said.

“Cardiac arrest can happen to anyone, anytime, anywhere. About 20 Victorians suffer a cardiac arrest every day and only one in 10 survive.

“Bystander intervention makes a big difference- when a patient in cardiac arrest receives CPR and a shock from an AED before paramedics arrive, their chance of survival more than doubles.”

AEDs are simple to operate and Ms Addicott said locals and visitors to Bulla should feel confident to use one regardless of whether they

had received training to do so.

“If someone is in cardiac arrest and an AED is available, simply open it and follow the instructions,” she said.

Ms Addicott said it is important all AEDs in the community are registered with AV, to ensure triple-0 call-takers can direct people to them in an emergency.

RegisteredAEDsinBullaandacrossVictoria can be located at registermyaed.ambulance.vic.

Bulla Heart Safe Community program lead Kathryn Addicott and The Black Horse Hotel manager Rahul Chandhok with the new AED. (Supplied) The Lancefield District Farmers’ Market turns 21 on Saturday. (Supplied)

Call to keep pool open

Sunbury residents are petitioning Hume council to keep the 50-metre outdoor pool open year-round, saying there is not enough room in the indoor 25-metre pool.

Local resident Brian Millett started the petition on March 8, to keep the pool open for a few hours in the morning following the unprecedented opening of the outdoor pool whileworkstorepairtheindoorpooltooknine months.

This call follows a disastrous 2023 for the 25 metre indoor pool, after a leak, which was discovered on May 12, cost ratepayers $1,147,594 for repair and improvement.

Mr Millett said opening the outdoor pool had been a fantastic initiative by the council and lots of locals have been swimming all year round and have enjoyed the experience.

“We don’t want it open all day in the winter, we want it open between 6am and 9am so people can use it then,” he said.

“Some… people who were only swimming indoors are loving the outdoor pool so much theydon’twanttogobackindoors.It’sthefresh air, the water quality and just the vibe outside.

“It’s great for physical health, mental and emotional wellbeing, learning to swim helps save lives, multicultural community members are getting more familiar around water.“

Mr Millett said the pool remained at a comfortable temperature between 26 and 28 degrees celsius, which he said was ideal.

“The pool manager has done an amazing job by keeping it so clean and at a consistent temperature, I don’t think the winter months will deter people,” he said.

“It’s 50-metres as well so you don’t get dizzy turning around.”

MrMillettsaidit’stheonly50-metreoutdoor pool around and the Sunbury community

deserves to be able to use it.

“They’ve left Sunbury behind, we’re only asking for it to be open between 6am and 9am sothatsquadscanform[and]coachescanhave permanency.”

AHumecouncilspokespersonsaidwhilethe outdoorpoolwasopeninwinter2023therewas minimal formal feedback received regarding the outdoor pool, however many comments of appreciation were made to staff on duty.

“The estimated range of additional cost to operate the outdoor pools at Sunbury

Aquatic and Leisure Centre through winter is $4,500-5,000 per week,” they said.

“These costs are associated with staffing, utilities and maintenance. These estimates are highly variable and dependent on weather and hours of operation.

“TheoutdoorpoolseasonatSunburyAquatic and Leisure Centre has been extended by two weekstoincludetheupcomingschoolholidays.

“This will be followed by the construction of the new outdoor water play project, which will make the area unsuitable for public access.”

Council calls for excise cut

Hume council will write to the federal government urging it to cut the fuel excise. Councillors voted at last Monday’s council meeting to write to the government to cut the excise to help reduce the cost of fuel for residents who are struggling with the cost of living.

Councillor Sam Misho said a 50 per cent reduction in fuel excise would benefit the residents of Hume.

“Australia is currently facing high inflation which is making it hard for our community and everyday Australian families to make ends meet,” he said.

“The fuel excise is a flat sales tax levied by the Australian Federal Government on petrol and diesel and from February 2024 the rate has increased from 48.8 cents per litre to 49.6 cents per litre for every litre of fuel purchased.

“While 0.8 cents is by no means a dramatic rise, the latest increase will mean close to $40 in total excise costs for a large SUV with an 80-litre fuel tank.”

Australian motorists will pay $67.6 billion over the next four years, For a typical household, this year’s fuel excise bill will be more than $1,000.

Hume council also estimates that it will pay approximately $500,000 per annuminfuelexciseto provideessential services such as rubbish collection.

Cr Misho said while the long term solution may be electric vehicles, but with current pricing and the cost of living crisis, it is not feasible to rely on EVs for all residents, and a reduction in fuel excise would help ease financial pressures for many families.


To all those Unsinkable Guys out there –

You might think it’s safe to have a few drinks around water, skip the life jacket when you’re out on the boat or go for a swim without checking the conditions.

But statistics prove that 4 out of 5 drownings are men.

Just remember that no one’s unsinkable.



Brian Millett started the petition to keep the outdoor pool open year-round (Damjan Janevski) 394047

Objection aired to childcare hub

The Gisborne community is one step closer to having a 152 capacity childcare centre on Calthorpe Street, following a submitter hearing on the development.

Macedon Ranges councillors heard from one submitter on March 13, in relation to the planning application and three objections were received by council prior to the meeting.

The application seeks to develop the vacant lot, located at the intersection of Fisher Street and Calthorpe Street, into a childcare centre with capacity of 152 children.


car park with 36 spaces, a bin storage area, an entrance and pram parking bay.

The centre will consist of four outdoor play areas, eight children’s rooms, a kitchen, staff room, laundry, reception and several bathrooms, storage and office spaces in addition to a piazza.

The objections related to increased noise and traffic, insufficient onsite parking and that the plans do not reflect surrounding vegetation.

In a written application, Gisborne resident Nicole said the amount of underground parking will mean vehicles will have to park on the street at drop off and pickup times.

“If parking is allowed on both sides of this narrow street, it becomes a single lane… and traffic flow would be severely impacted and create a dangerous situation,” Nicole said.

A planner from Cogency, which is representing the owners of the proposed childcare centre, spoke at the meeting and said the site is ideal for the development.

“The proposed childcare features a high quality architectural response recognising the site conditions as well as the site context within Gisborne,” the planner said.

“We also recognise that the primary concern from the two objections has been proposed as impact on traffic in car parking

Helping break down social isolation

Whenmostpeoplescaledowntheirworkload, they might take up a hobby or plan to spend extra time relaxing and enjoy slowing down.

But for long term Gisborne local Scott Murray, when he started teaching part-time he saw the move as an opportunity to give back.

“I reduced my load a bit so I wanted to volunteer and I wanted to volunteer in the old age sector,” Scott said.

“My parents are also not around this area, but receiving some support where they live. So it’s sort of paying society back a little bit, balancing out society a bit.”

Scott volunteers through the Macedon Ranges council’s Aged Care Volunteer Visitor Scheme, which was setup to address social isolation and enhance the wellbeing of older people in the community.

“[What has been] set up is to link possible volunteers with possible people who need or wouldlikeorwouldbenefitfromavisit,”Scott said.

“That’s usually worked through with the people in the homes and retirement villages and through [council] as well.

“[The scheme] helps out the residents with their social health and hopefully their mental health, [and gives them] the opportunity to interact with different people.

“I think you if you’ve got the time and the availability to do it, and you can see some benefits in helping other people.”

The scheme is funded by the federal government and is free to those eligible. If residents would like to learn more about volunteering they can email the team at or call (03) 5422 0333.


in the local area.

“The number of car parking spaces is three more than originally proposed as… we rearranged the carpark to add an additional three spaces… to alleviate the objection objectives concerns.

“Traffic assessment… concluded that the car parking number and arrangement would be sufficient for both staff and visitors to the childcare.

“[It] also found that the increase in traffic associated with the childcare will be moderate and spread across peak periods and dispersed amongst the intersections to the west, north and east.”

Expensive weekend

As Victorians across the state enjoyed their long weekend and tried to stay cool, Victoria Police detected 42 traffic offences in Hume and Macedon Ranges as part of Operation Arid.

The four day, statewide operation saw police targeting high-risk driving behaviour, from 12.01am Friday, March 8 to 11.15pm Monday, March 11, with a particular focus on drink and drug driving as several music festivalswereplannedfortheweekend.

In the Macedon Ranges, police detected 18 speeding offences, three unregistered vehicles, three drink driving offences, one drug driving offence, one disqualified driver, three unlicensed drivers, one mobile phone offence and one offence of disobeying signs/signals.

In Hume, there were six speeding offences, one drink driving offence, onedisqualifieddriver,oneunlicensed driver,oneoffenceofdisobeyingsigns/ signals and one mobile phone offence.

Across the state 6488 traffic offences were recorded as part of Operation Arid, including five deaths.

Extreme speed and seatbelt usage were also noted as areas of concern by police, with 2843 speeding drivers detected and 117 motorists failing to wear a seat belt or not wearing one properly.

While this was a key concern pointed out by police, both Hume and Macedon Ranges recorded zero seatbelt offences as part of the operation.

Solar panels and equipment upgrades announced for health centre

Healthcare in Melbourne’s north-west is getting a boost, following important upgrades at the Sunbury Cobaw Community Health Centre (SCCH).

SCCH will receive more than $150,000 from the latest round of the Metropolitan Health Infrastructure Fund (MHIF) to install solar panels and update important dental and kitchen equipment.

Health Infrastructure Minister Mary-Anne Thomas visited SCCH on March 13 to announce the funding and said it will reduce the centre’s environmental footprint.

“This project will enable the Sunbury Cobaw Community Health Centre to provide an even better service for their community,” she said.

“MHIF is part of our ongoing investment ensuring our health services have the best space, facilities and equipment to deliver

world-class care for every Victorian, when and where they need it.”

With a team of more than 200 staff and 60 volunteers, SCCH supports people from Sunbury to beyond the borders of Macedon Ranges to access free and low-cost health, wellbeing, and community services.

This investment will allow the centre and staff to work more sustainably- with a solar power generating system able to help combat high operating costs and reduce carbon emissions.

Accesstodentalcarewillalsobeenhanced, with the money helping to upgrade and replace important dental equipment and facilities.

The centre will also upgrade the cooking equipment, supporting the busy child and youth services.

With 110 projects funded across

upgrades and

Melbournetodate,MHIFhelpsmetropolitan health and community services undertake vital infrastructure upgrades, including construction and refurbishment projects, equipment and technology other essential works. Health Infrastructure Minister Mary-Anne Thomas and Sunbury MP Josh Bull at the Sunbury Cobaw Community Health funding announcement. (Supplied) ACVVS volunteer Scott Murray. (Supplied)



PHONE \ 03 8318 5777

LOCATION \ Corner Thomsons Road and Keilor Park Drive, Keilor Park, 3042

DISTRIBUTION \ 1300 656 678



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Hope-filled Easter event

With Easter fast approaching, Gisborne residentswillbeabletogatherforafreefamily event run by The Voice of Joy and Gladness.

Following the success of the 2023 Carols by Candlelight, the group has expanded to Easter celebrations and will hold the event on Friday, March 22, from 5.30pm to 8pm at John Aitken Reserve, Gisborne.

Event manager Lousie Van der Kraan said residents can look forward to an enjoyable evening with a string orchestra, an opera singer, plus supporting singers, free children’s activities, along with a variety of food van options.

“For the first time The Voice of Joy and GladnessispresentingtotheMacedonRanges community a hope-filled program depicting

the events of Easter,” she said.

“This Easter we would like the audience to experience a journey to spark the imagination through a thoughtful two-hour production contemplating the closing week of Jesus’ ministry on earth.

“Together we will walk down the dusty road of Jerusalem through a powerful music presentation and will dwell on the themes of the Triumphant Entry, the Last Supper, Gethsemane, and Calvary.

“We each can gain a fresh outlook of appreciation of God’s love for humanity as we gaze on the gift of love- Jesus on Calvary.”

The event is non-denominational and everyone is welcome.



Toy library

Sunbury Toy Library is now located at 35 Dobell Avenue, Sunbury, not at the Sunbury Neighbourhood House as was previously reported by Star Weekly.

Hume waste

Hume council’s waste education program is now available to primary schools in Hume. Council said the fun and interactive incursions are presented by experienced resource recovery education officers, with half day and full day session packages available. The sessions can cover recycling right or food waste. Details:

Hi-Quality waste facility

Hume council has deferred its decision to send a response to the Minister for Planning about the Hi-Quality waste facility. At a meeting on March 21, Councillor Joseph Haweil said it is a very fast turnaround, and there are a few items he has questions about and would like clarification on. Other councillors showed their support for the deferment.



Sunbury & Macedon Ranges Star Weekly @starweeklynews @star_weekly

Published by MMP Star Pty Ltd ACN 168 220 399 Head Office Corner Thomsons Road and Keilor Park Drive, Keilor Park, 3042 Publisher/Managing Director, Paul Thomas All material is copyright to MMP Star Pty Ltd. Responsibility for election comment is accepted by Paul Thomas. All significant errors will be corrected as quickly as possible. Distribution numbers, areas and coverage are estimates only. For our terms and conditions please visit
Louise Van der Kraan from The Voice of Joy and Gladness is getting ready for the Easter programme. (Damjan Janevski) 392695_01

Picks set to pack punch

As Victorians welcome the official end of summer, wine growers throughout the Macedon Ranges have turned their attention to this season’s harvesting.

The Wood family from Kyneton Ridge Estate have been busy harvesting their grapes for their pinot noir and chardonnay vintages, after an early start to the season.

Following its establishment in the1990s, the family purchased the vineyard in 2019. It has historically focused on pinot noir, chardonnay, shiraz and sparkling wine.

Patrick Wood said they’re harvesting is three weeks ahead of where they were last year, and a lot is down to heavy rainfall at the end of last year and vigorous vine growth.

“Usually we are picking around Easter and we tend to be [one of] the earlier picks in the region… [but] by the end of the month it looks like we’ll have most of the grapes in,” he said.

“It’s been a challenging year… but I think the wine is going to be fantastic, we’re seeing great fruit and flavour development.

“We’ve been so busy with it, it’s a bit challenging to stop and smell the roses… it’s the time of year when everything is happening.

“Kyneton Ridge Estate produces at this stage about 11 or 12 wines, but at the winery here we do a bit of contact making, so it’s closer to about 30 to 40 batches.”

8 SUNBURY & MACEDON RANGES STAR WEEKLY Tuesday, 19 March, 2024 NEWS STARWEEKLY.COM.AU Keeping up to date with your local news has never been so easy... Simplyregistertodayandgetourlatest news articlesandDigital EditionsinyourinboxforFREE SenttoyourinboxeveryTuesday 12665737-AV09-24
Kyneton Ridge Estate owner Angela Wood, and below left, Patrick Wood. (Damjan Janevski) 393961

Easier to beautify nature strips

Get ready for more gardening in Sunbury, as a new nature strip policy has been adopted. Under the new Hume council policy, if a resident wishes to undertake work on the nature strip, they must apply for a permit, but opportunities to plant grass or shrubs will be easier than before.

Councillor Karen Sherry is a strong advocate for a creative nature strip, calling them a unique type of urban space, and she said they can greatly benefit the community,

by encouraging people to walk more outside, leading to a healthier lifestyle.

“More than a third of all Melbourne’s open space is nature strip,” she said. “Greenery in the street – it’s habitat for birds, shelter and resource for a lot of insects.

“It makes a street a more social space, a more welcoming space, and improves walkability.

“I’m looking forward to seeing a bit more guerrilla gardening in Hume.”

The policy said if council becomes aware of non-compliant and-or unsafe landscape

Adrifting a fab comedy

Macedon Ranges residents will be able to spend their Thursday night watching a heartwarming and fabulous comedy at the Woodend Community Centre.

The production, which was staged just before COVID lockdowns, had audiences raving about the show. Residents can catch the next one on March 21, at 7.30pm.

Audience member Jain Thompson said the play is very relevant and funny with the use of the best throw away lines.

“I loved this play… A brilliant script by Michael Gray Griffith,” Ms Thompson said. “[It’s] a comedy that addresses love’s lost and won death, social issues, unemployment, sickness, wealth and poverty but also celebrates the love of life albeit at times with fruity language and humour.

“Adrifting [is] very relevant and funny with the use of the best throw away lines.

“Rohana had incredible stage presents and she stole the show. Thank you all for

a very entertaining afternoon of theatre. I recommend people go to this play. It is great theatre.”

The show follows Taylor, a brilliant young photographer with a problem- he can only photograph the truth.

Since no one wants the truth he’s been hiding in his room, but now, on the eve of eviction he is being offered three different futures by three strong women.

This includes; his mother who wants to protect him, her friend who wants him to become rich by taking glam shots, and his crazy grandmother who wants him to embrace his gift by becoming an independent photojournalist.

In order to adapt to this era where funding for new theatre has dried up, they are initially staging this play in the style of a 1950’s radio play.


works, it will invite the resident to bring the works into compliance and if unsuccessful it will undertake enforcement action.

If council cannot identify the responsible person or they fail to bring the landscape to compliance, council shall remove the landscape works and seek costs from the property owner.

Council will only undertake works on nature strips in cases of significant risk to the community, such as a sink hole, or in cases where a council vehicle has caused damage.

The policy also reinforced that parking on

a nature strip is illegal and could be the cause of an infringement notice and subsequent fine.

Councillor Jarrod Bell is looking forward to the policy.

“It’s the issue that divides our community the most… it’s an indication that we’ve got the balance right,” he said.

Majority of the community feedback said the new policy is easier to understand and Cr Sherry said it better clarifies the responsibilities of residents to maintain their nature strips to a strong degree.

AFL FOOTY TICKETS WIN! NEW GAMES EVERY WEEK! Scan the QR Code to ENTER NOW Or visit - 12676762-JB12-24
Adrifting is a heartwarming comedy with hope. (Supplied)

Autumn Festival returns

As the green turns to orange and leaves begin the fall, towns across the Macedon Ranges are preparing for the award-winning Autumn Festival to return this April.

Joiningthepopularsuiteoftailoredtrailsand regular markets from April 5 to 28 are the live and local in community halls series.

The series celebrates locally based artists and community venues, while the treasure trail highlights some of the region’s top leafy picnic spots.

Festival favourites will also be returning, includingtheautumnpieandtarttrail,thefood and drink passport, tipple trails and the edgy veg trail, with the Woodend visitor information centre the go-to festival hub.

Mayor Annette Death said the four year old festivalwasagrowingcelebrationoftheregion’s natural beauty mixed with some of the best local, seasonal produce and performers.

“I’m unashamedly biased but proud in saying that the Macedon Ranges has so much to offer all year round, but there’s definitely something extraspecialintheairduringautumn,”shesaid.

“Whether you’re a first-time visitor to our shire, a regular visitor or a resident, we encourage you to plan your trip in advance and enjoy all of what our beautiful towns have to offer.”

To specifically support Macedon and Mount Macedon residents and visitors during the autumn period, limited temporary measures will be reinstated along Honour Avenue and surrounds.

From late March through to May12, temporary signage will be installed along Honour Avenue and other council-managed roads, to clearly highlight no parking zones.

Then from March 29 through to April 28, on weekends and public holidays, traffic management personnel will enforce a full road closure along the same section of road from 8am to 6pm.

Chopping locks for change

■ From page 1.

Charlie’s mother Katherine Butler said Charlie’s father’s death affected his schooling and attendance, but he has since improved.

“I was at school every day last year for Charlie,” Kath said. “He actually failed the year… [but this year he’s] done really well at school.

“He’s picked up with all his classes. He’s actually talking more about… mental health and he’s opening up a lot more.”

When Charlie told Kath he wanted to shave his mullet to raise money for the Black Dog Institute, she said she thought it was an awesome idea.

“I was rapt because he can finally have a haircut,” she said, laughing.

“He came out after school when I picked him up and said, I really want to shave my mullet off for men’s mental health.”

Since starting the fundraiser, Kath said they’ve been excited to see how many people have donated and rallied around Charlie.

“The fundraising has been really good so far and lots of people have left lovely messages for Charlie.

“It’s boosted his confidence as well.”

Charlie will shave his mullet at the end of April or start of May. Donations can be made:

Lifeline: call 13 11 14 or SMS 0477 13 11 14

Macedon Ranges council tourism officer Hayley Monson is excited to receive all of the colouring competition entries, as part of this year’s Autumn Festival. (Damjan Janevski) 394710_06

Searching for more volunteers

The Victoria State Emergency Service (VICSES) Sunbury Unit is currently recruiting newmemberstohelpkeepthecommunitysafe.

The Sunbury SES Unit serves the communities of Sunbury, Diggers Rest, Bulla, Wildwood and Clarkefield. Last year they respondedtomorethan300callsforassistance, including more than 60 rescue calls.

Unit controller Anthony White said volunteering with VICSES has been a rewarding experience.

“The Sunbury Unit is a great place to meet new and interesting people while supporting your community,” he said.

“It’s terrific to see a new member develop new skills and do things they never imagined, it’s what makes volunteering with VICSES so rewarding.”

“There is so much opportunity here at VICSES and it’s always great to see new membersgetinvolvedinthevarietyofdifferent roles we offer.”


Tourist help Autumn has arrived, but where is Macedon Ranges council?

Rumours are rife across the Macedon and Mount Macedon communities that this year, council will go back on years of work and not provide any support to manage the influx of tourists who do so much to support our local tourism economy throughout autumn.

This includes not providing the tourist hub at Centennial Park, not part-closing

An information session will be held at the units McDougall Road Headquarters on Wednesday March 27 at 7pm. Anyone interested can also visit the website to learn more.

The local unit has been serving the Sunbury community since 1977, by providing rescue, search and rescue, storm and flood emergency response as well as assisting fellow agencies.

SES Sunbury Unit currently has around 75 active volunteers, from all walks of life and all ages located across the state.

Theunitvolunteersincludeteachersworking alongside electricians, retirees and university students, just to name a few.

The volunteers make a real difference in the Sunbury and district community, from floods, storms, search and rescue, road crash rescue and much more.

There’s a position for everyone at VICSES. Anyone can make a valuable contribution.


Honour Avenue and not providing shuttle buses to gardens along Mount Macedon Road.

There is no information available on council’s website. Doing nothing is not an option. Nor is allowing endless private gardens to open without any restrictions being imposed on them.

Any council across the country would die to have the number of tourists we see each year arrive on their doorstep without having to spend a dollar on advertising.

It’s not rocket science– tourist hotspots like the Cotswolds deal with

this every year. Equally, fining tourists because of council laziness ensuring they never return is also not the answer nor a great visitor experience. If council can’t see the golden opportunity this presents the state government should step in, sack the council and appoint administrators.

Elizabeth Alexander, Mount Macedon

and Facebook pages.

Post: Corner Thomsons Road and Keilor Park Drive, Keilor Park, 3042



Sunbury & Macedon Ranges Star Weekly @starweeklynews @star_weekly

Editor’s note: Council announced on March 13 temporary measures will be reinstated along Honour Avenue. ■ See story page 10.

Tuesday, 19 March, 2024 SUNBURY & MACEDON RANGES STAR WEEKLY 11 STARWEEKLY.COM.AU NEWS Natural ConstipationRelief FREE OFFER * Sunraysia Prune Extract is a food and not a medicine *FestiveValuePackincludes2Jarsfor$119.90 to getthethirdjarfree.*Whilestockslast.SubjecttoTs&Cs Freefromchemicalsandonehundred percentnatural Morethan70prunesineveryjar Naturallyrichinantioxidants,vitaminsand mineralsincludingpotassium,dietaryfibre, magnesium,VitaminK,BoronandSorbitol Helpsrelieveconstipationnaturally Helpspromoteguthealthand improveddigestion Enjoyateaspoondaily,ormixwith anyfood,tea,yogurtoruse incooking GetyourdailydoseofregularitywithSunraysiaPruneExtract& GetaFREEjar($59.95value)witheveryFestiveValuePack* 1800 778 637 Scantosave$5plusGetValuePackwithaFREEjar 12666758-FC08-24
Weekly welcomes letters to the editor as well as comments and story tips on our websites
Sunbury SES team. (Supplied)


Health and wellbeing trail walk

The Sunbury health and wellbeing walk will include yoga, a walk around Salesian lake and surprise treatment at the centre for wellbeing foundation. It will cost $95, and includes lunch, fresh juice and half hour treatment. Limited bookings available.

■ or Sandra, 0411 100 947


Sunbury-Macedon Ranges VIEW Club is a friendly women’s organisation and a valued part of The Smith Family. We meet on the third Friday of each month at 11am at Club Sunbury, Riddell Road, Sunbury. New members warmly welcome

■ Lee-anne, 0403 047 909


Yoga classes at Sunbury Neighbourhood House focus on supporting participants to slow down and move well. Special attention is given to mindful awareness of movement that builds strength in a healthy and safe way, Monday mornings, Thursday evenings and Friday mornings

■ or 9740 6978

Neighbourhood Garden

Become part of Sunbury’s Neighbourhood Garden and grow edible and useful plants in a social group at Sunbury Neighbourhood House, 531 Elizabeth Drive Sunbury. All skill sets are welcome at working bees on the third Saturday of each month, 10am-12.30pm, February-November.

■ or 9740 6978.

Art Group

The Woodend Art Group holds classes and workshops in the studios in the Woodend railway station complex. They also have a social Tuesday where members and interested people can come along in the morning, have a coffee and paint together in a social environment.

■ Colin Robinson, 0407 426 252

Jacksons Creek Combined Probus

The club meets on the second Monday of each month at the Sunbury Bowling Club at 10am. This friendly group of men and women enjoy outings and meetings each month and twice yearly trips away staying in cabins and caravans. Visitors and new members are warmly welcomed

■ Doug, 5428 3317, or Teresa, 0417 373 006

Craft and conversation

Head down to the Sunbury Library on Mondays at noon for the craft and conversation group. The program is free and open to people aged 15 years and older.


Chill Out Sunbury

Chill Out Sunbury is a free event for 12 and 18 years old to participate in activities such as trivia, games, and more. Happening every Wednesday, 3.30-5.30pm at the Sunbury Youth Centre, 51-53 Evans Street.


Sunbury Ladies Badminton Club

Come along and be part of Sunbury Ladies Badminton Club and enjoy the benefits of physical activity. Social games are on Mondays, 9.30am- noon, and team competitions are on Thursdays, 9.30am-12.30pm at Eric Boardman Stadium, Wilsons Lane.


Come have a chat

Delve into deeper topics and enjoy

intriguing conversations by joining the Table 8 Discussion Group. Chats every Tuesday from 10.30-11.30am at Macedon Lounge, 40 Victoria Street, Macedon.

■ Carol, 0431 186 575

Family History and Heritage Society

If you’ve got a hankering to learn more about Sunbury and your own family history, come along to meetings at 1.30pm on the third Thursday of each month at the Sunbury Senior Citizens Centre, 8 O’Shanassy Street, Sunbury.


Rotary club

The Sunbury Rotary Club meets every Tuesday at the Ball Court Hotel, 60 Macedon Street, Sunbury from 7pm.


Ladies probus

The Woodlands Ladies Probus Club of Sunbury meets on the fourth Monday of each month at the Sunbury Bowling Club at 9.45am.

■ Leonie, 0401 764 182

Sunbury Ladies Probus Club

The Sunbury Ladies Probus Club meets at 9.30am on the fourth Wednesday of each month at the Sunbury Football Social Club rooms.

■ Pat, 0433 789 754, or Sylvia, 0417 170 142

Sunbury Combined Probus Club

The Sunbury Combined Probus Club meets every fourth Thursday of the month at the Sunbury Bowling Club at 10am.

■ Jo, 0410 834 272

Shuttles and pickleballs

Macedon Ranges Badminton Club is inviting residents to come and play badminton, or pickleball, or both at Macedon Community Centre. Badminton is played on Tuesdays from 7.30pm and Thursdays at 9.30am.

Pickleball is played on Mondays at 6.30pm, Wednesdays at 10.15am and on Tuesday from 10am at the Romsey Recreation Centre.

■ David, 0419 589 425 or

Scottish Country Dancing

The Macedon Ranges Scottish Country Dancing Group meets every Thursday afternoon 1-3pm at Buffalo Stadium, Woodend. The dancing involves social country dancing, and no special clothes needed, just soft flat shoes.

■ Meg, 5427 1100 or Linda, 0408 476 317

Community. Connect. Create. If you are needing support or looking for a social group to join, you can visit Community. Connect. Create, which is an online resource listing support and community groups in the Macedon Ranges. if you would like your group listed or would like to work to help this project grow please email: fiona@communityconnectcreate.


Amateur Radio Club

The Macedon Ranges Amateur Radio Club meets on the third Saturday of the month at the Woodend RSL Hall, 32 Anslow Street, Woodend at 10am. If you are interested in amateur radio or already have a call sign, this could be for you.


Kyneton Badminton Club

Kyneton Badminton Club is a welcoming, fun and social group that plays on Mondays, at 7pm at the Kyneton Toyota Sports and Aquatic Centre, Victoria Street. All skill levels welcome.


Take off weight naturally Struggling to lose weight? Struggling to

get motivated? Want to try and do it in a friendly and less stressful atmosphere? Come and join TOWN (Take Off Weight Naturally) every Thursday at 9am at the Sunbury Neighbourhood House, 531 Elizabeth Drive, Sunbury.

■ Rhonda, 0409 740 924

Sunbury Macedon Ranges Lodge

Meets monthly on the second Wednesday of the month at 7pm, 73 Main Street, Romsey. New members welcome.

■ Wayne, 0404 034 737, or Ian, 0438 240 402

Local camera club

The Macedon Ranges Photographic Society is your local camera club for friendship, photographic outings, workshops, guest presenters, competitions and more. Meetings on the first Tuesday of the month, followed by the next Monday. Doors open at 7pm, meeting starts at 7.30pm at Dromkeen, 1012 Kilmore Road, Riddells Creek.


Breast cancer support group

On the first and third Tuesday of the month breast cancer survivors are invited to head along to the Gisborne Golf Club at 10.30am to take part in a breast cancer support group.

■ Lesley, 0484 691 226

Village connect

Enjoy free coffee and cake while connecting with fellow Macedon Ranges residents 55 years old and older. Happening on Tuesdays and Thursday at cafes across the municipality.

■, or 5422 0262

Arts and games night

Get creative at the Sunbury Youth Centre each Wednesday from 3.30-5.30pm. The free program is for people aged 12 to 18 years old, at 51-53 Evans Street, Sunbury.

WANT YOUR EVENT LISTED? Community Calendar is made available free of charge to not-for-profit organisations to keep the public informed of special events and activities. Send item details to Star Weekly Community Calendar, Corner Thomsons Road and Keilor Park Drive, Keilor Park, 3042, or email to by 9am Wednesday the week prior to publication
This week’s photographer’s choice picture is of Shweta Pandya from ABCD Dance School ahead of the Holi colour festival. (Damjan Janevski) 394134_01



1 Australian desert (7)

5 Spectacles (7)

9 Filmed information (11)

10 Miriti palm (3)

11 Pot belly (6)

12 Hinged (7)

14 Passionate (4)

15 Attraction (10)

17 Perspicacious (10)

19 Male elephant (4)

20 Electromotive force (7)

22 Flippancy (6)

25 Fall behind (3)

26 Unwanted (11)

28 Defecate (7)

29 Equal; even – (7)


1 Team (4)

2 Car-fixers (9)

3 Boy’s name (5)

4 Uncaringness (11)

5 Indian state (3)

6 Whenever (7)

7 Avoid (5)

8 Absence of motion (10)

12 Reporters (11)

13 American theatrical/musical institution (10)

16 Impartial (9)

18 Rubbing out (7)

21 Sound reasoning (5)

23 Piece of poetry (5)

24 Scottish loch (4)

27 Pass away (3)





Using the nine letters in the grid, how many words of four letters or more can you list? The centre letter must be included and each letter may only be used once. No colloquial or foreign words. No capitalised nouns, apostrophes or plural words ending in “s”.

Today’s Aim:

15 words: Good

No. 177


1 Which festive song is the No.1 best selling single of all time?

2 The Bellagio, MGM Grand and Mirage casinos feature in which Steven Soderbergh film?

3 How many days were in an ancient Roman week?

4 What does it mean to be a polyglot?

5 Which of Jane Austen’s books was originally titled FirstImpressions?

6 Who were the winners of the first ever soccer World Cup in 1930?

7 What is the term ‘hi-fi’ short for?

8 For which supporting role was Cate Blanchett (pictured) awarded her first Academy Award?

9 In Norse mythology, Bragi is the god of what?

10 Which land mammal has the most powerful bite?

No. 177 No. 177 No. 177
solve a Sudoku puzzle, every number
1 to 9 must appear in: each of the nine vertical columns, each of the nine horizontal rows and each of the nine 3 x 3 boxes. Remember, no number can occur more than once in any row, column or box.
177 3849 4283519 9761 47 1 91 2 19 35 59 8 68 9 easy 856 4593 745 24 831 1 9527 7638 8 526 83 medium 27 87 56 35 7512 4 19 2 75 74 63 5 4 2138 hard
annex, aping, axing, dean, deign, dine, ding, ending, expand, EXPANDING, gain, gained, ginned, inane, index, nape, neap, nine, pain, pained, pane, pang, panned, pend, pending, pine, pined, ping, pinged, pinned
22 words: Very good 30 words: Excellent
ACHES AFTER ALONE ALPHA CACTI CLOVE CORPS CYCLE ENACT ESSAY EVADE GEESE HENCE IRONY ISSUE LADEN MATTE MEDAL NOVEL OASIS OBESE OLIVE OPERA PALMS PEACE PRIOR RACER RENEW RESET ROBIN ROLES SANER SEARS SIRES SNIDE SPLAT STEMS STEWS STYLE TERSE THOSE TONES UNSET VERVE WARDS WASTE 6 LETTERS EASIER ERECTS SETTER URGING 7 LETTERS ADAMANT APPEASE CREMATE IMMENSE OMNIBUS SITUATE 8 LETTERS DROLLEST EVENNESS SCARCEST SELECTED 11 LETTERS EGALITARIAN GRASSHOPPER 12 345678910111213 1415 1617181920212223242526 F V P W G X R Q L O T U J N B S E Y A D Z K H I C M Insert the missing letters to make 10 words – five reading across the grid and five reading down. NOTE: more than one solution may be possible 22-03-24 Puzzles and pagination © Pagemasters | 384516729 458172693 831724956 925487361 163895472 649351287 716239845 297643518 572968134 easy medium hard 138524967 742835196 389742615 457689231 893416572 215968743 926173458 561297384 674351829 642953871 823745916 238196547 751284693 175869324 417538269 389617452 964321785 596472138 1 14 7 20 2 15 8 21 3 16 9 22 4 17 10 23 5 18 11 24 6 19 12 25 13 26 IM 1. White Christmas (Bing Crosby) 2. Ocean’s Eleven 3. Eight 4. Fluent in multiple languages 5. PrejudiceandPride 6. Uruguay 7. High fidelity 8. Katharine Hepburn (The Aviator) 9. Poetry 10. Hippopotamus ANSWERS:




MACEDON VIC 3440 (RFNSA 3441002)

The proposed colocation consists of the addition of new equipment and associated works, including 5G, on the existing tower at the above location, as follows:

•Three (3) new panel antennas less than 2.8m in length mounted on the existing monopole at a height of 28.1m;

• Three (3) new remote radio units;

•One (1) new 900mm parabolic dish antenna mounted on the existing monopole at a height of 25m;

• One (1) outdoor equipment cabinet at ground level;

•One (1) GPS antenna atop of the proposed equipment cabinet; and

•the installation of ancillary equipment associated with the operation and safety of the facility such as cabling, filters, combiners and safety signage.

1. Optus regards the proposed installations as Lowimpact Facilities under the Telecommunications (Low-impact Facilities)Determination 2018 (“The Determination”), based on the description above.

2. In accordance with Section 7 of C564:2020 Mobile Phone Base Station Deployment Code, we invite you to provide feedback about the proposal. Should you require further information or wish to comment, please contact SKYAUS Infrastructure on 1300 845 444, via email at or

mail at PO Box 4418 Dandenong South VIC 3164

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by Friday 5 April 2024. Further information may also be obtained from 12676489-MS12-24 CLASSIFIEDS EARLY DEADLINES EASTER Classified deadlines for Tuesday, 2nd April issue as follows: Thursday 28th March at 10am 12675758-AP12-24 Placing your classified advert is so easy... Online: (24/7) Phone: 1300 666 808 (Open 8.30-5pm Mon-Fri) Email: (include your name, address and phone number) We accept payment by: VISA/MASTERCARD/EFTPOS (1.5% credit card processing fee applies. Cheques and money orders can be posted in or hand delivered to our local office) Ask about our discounted ongoing advertising rates and how choosing more newspapers gives your advertising more impact and saves you money... Deadline for all classifications is 10.00am Monday. 12435707-FA03-20 Call 1300 666 808 From plumbers to pest control, carpet cleaning to building services, dry cleaning to computer repairs, lawn mowing and more, Network Classifieds has been connecting local businesses with the local community with our Trades and Services each week. Speak to our classified team and find out how easy it is to advertise. Start building your brand today and be seen every week in Network Classifieds Trades and Services. Grow your business with TRADES & SERVICES Tree Removal • Tree Pruning Report Writing • Stump Grinding • Fully Insured Emergency Call Outs • Mulch Available 12575127-AI44-22 cutandclimb TREE SERVICES Lee Guppy 0407 051 511 Dip. Hort. Arb 12638905-FC40-23 “I advertise in the Star Weekly to let the local residents know we are a local, family owned business.” - Lee V Public Notices and Event V Deadline V Trades Business Profile General Notices Trades & Services


1. Which streaming service hosted a live tennis match between Rafael Nadal and Carlos Alcaraz?

2. Since 2010, how many AFL exhibition games

3. Which fan-favourite tennis player is known by the nickname ‘Demon’?

4. Ivan Cleary is the coach for which NRL team?

The father of which F1 star was engaged in a heated exchange with Christian Horner following media scrutiny around the Red Bull Principal?

Who scored the first goal of the 2023 AFL Grand Final?

What sport is played at the Cognizant Classic?

What informal cricket term is named after England’s head coach Brendon McCullum?

In what year was the Dally M Medal not awarded after the event was cancelled due to NRL pay disputes?

Olympic Phryge, the mascot of the Paris 2024 Olympics, is based on what piece of clothing?

In what year did Kim Clijsters win her first Grand Slam singles title?

12. Which team are the reigning AFLW premiers?

13. Who is the captain of the English women’s cricket team?

14. Summer McIntosh is a swimmer from which country?

15. Rhea Ripley currently holds which WWE title?

16. What is the PWHL?

17. Which Women’s Super League team has the most Australian players?

18. And how many do they have?

19. Skeet shooting was introduced to the Olympics in what year?

20. The Emeralds play which sport for Australia?

21. How many AFL teams has Brodie Grundy played for in his career?

22. Which two teams took part in the WNBL 2023–24 Grand Final Series?

23. Social media star Jake Paul will reportedly fight which famous retired boxer in July?

24. Which racing team does Max Verstappen drive for?

25. The future Tasmaniabased AFL team will be known by what nickname?

26. Who has played the most games of any current NRL player, with 317 games played at the start of 2024?

27. Ireland’s Test cricket team recently won its first Test against which nation?

28. Which nation will the Matildas play in two pre-Olympic friendlies in May and June?

29. Which NRL team plays its home games at 4 Pines Park?

30. Which Geelong AFL player is on track to break the team’s games record in 2024?

1. Netflix 2. Three 3. Alex de Minaur 4. Penrith Panthers 5. Max Verstappen 6. Nick Daicos 7. Golf 8. Bazball 9. 2003 10. The Phrygian cap 11. 2005 12. Brisbane Lions 13. Heather
14. Canada 15. Women’s World Champion 16. The Professional Women’s Hockey League 17. Arsenal 18. Three 19. 1968 20. Baseball 21. Three (Collingwood, Melbourne, Sydney) 22. Southside Flyers and Perth Lynx 23. Mike Tyson 24. Red Bull 25. Devils 26. Jesse Bromwich 27. Afghanistan 28. China 29. Manly Sea Eagles 30. Tom Hawkins
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Radical reshape a stand out

Puffing out its chest Hyundai has declared its radically redesigned 2004 i30 Sedan is meant to turn heads. It does, but not all for the right reasons. From most angles the car presents the characteristics of a sleek four-door coupe with sporty pretensions.

Then there’s the rear . . . oh dear! The boot lid has been crafted as an aero spoiler. And, for some reason, in contrast to the rest of the car’s buffed body, it sticks out like a sore thumb. The darker Ultimate Red duco of the test vehicle wentsomewaytodisguisingthis,butpixofthe lighter colours unfortunately highlighted the blemish.

On the plus side, there is much to back the maker’s hyperbole. The i30 MY24 range includes upgraded convenience and safety, plus Bluelink connected car services for Elite and above. And there’s impressive fuel economy from the debut of a petrol / electric hybrid powertrain claiming a combined urban / highway consumption of 3.9 litres per 100 kilometres. Upgraded 2.0 MPi and 1.6 T-GDi petrol-only power plants are continued.

Standard features across the range now include LED headlamps and daytime running lights,frontparkingalarmshavebeenaddedto rear versions, more advanced forward collision avoidance and intelligent speed limit assist.

Entry-level trim includes 16-inch alloy wheels, plus premium patterned black cloth seats, while the Elite model introduces Bluelink connected car services; Premium adds Bose premium audio and assorted new-to-the-model technology.

On test was the introductory i30 2.0 MPi CVT, replacing the Active variant. Petrol-only models step up to the Elite 2.0 MPi CVT and Premium 2.0 MPi CVT, then the N Line chips in with 1.6 T-GDi 7DCT and N Line Premium 1.6 T-GDi 7DCT. Hybrids are i30 1.6 GDi 6DCT, Elite 1.6 GDi 6DCT and Premium 1.6 GDi 6DCT.

Pricesstartat$29,000,pluson-roadcosts,for the entry level i30 CVT and top out at $41,500 for the N Line 1.6 T-GDi 7DCT Premium. The 1.6 GDi Hybrid 6DCT is $33,000. All MY24 i30 sedans are covered by Hyundai’s five-year 100,000 kilometre warranty, complimentary roadside assist for 12 months, 1500 km free first service, a dedicated customer care centre and myHyundai owner website.

Styling Sedans, in general, are not known for getting young buyers dancing to their tune, so Hyundai has deliberately set out to rectify this with a ‘sensuous sporty’ sedan that relies on geometricshapes,3-Dsurfacingandsexylines.

The result is an i30 that, ‘with its wedge shaped stance complementing a coupe-like body profile’, it is set aside from the conventionally-styled small sedan rivals. Up front a split horizontal grille, with black parametric pattern incorporates a chrome highlight connecting the headlamps.

ThestandardLEDheadlampsblendwiththe wide grille topped by optional LED indicators as part of LED daytime running lights. The steeply raked windscreen and rear window connect the sleek roofline in a typically sporty profile.

As mentioned above, that’s where the ‘coupe’ comes a cropper. From behind, the sedan is not only dominated by the sticky-out spoiler, but below is a deeper diffuser-style bumper, teamedwithastandardH-lightingLEDset-up. For me it’s all a bit messy..


Movingrightalong,thecabincouldn’tbemore accommodating.Theswoopyroofrearrequires occupants to crouch on getting in and out, but inside, the cabin is surprisingly spacious. The boot is unlocked via the key fob but is not hands free. It can take 474 litres of cargo with the rear seat backs up. Folded them comes by releasing a pair of latches under the opening.

The Hyundai i30 Sedan has come in for a major reshape.

(Pictures: Supplied)

Thehingesintrudeintothebootspacewiththe lid closed.

The i30 sedan’s unique wraparound dash and centre console with large digital displays focus on the driver and fit in with the more dynamic features of the exterior.

A cleaner more modern appearance comes from premium-patterned upholstery in Obsidian Black. Elite and Premium variants step up to a leather-appointed black interior, while N Line versions add sporty red stitching and highlights throughout. The i30 Sedan carries a full-size spare wheel.


TheMY24i30Sedancabinincludesareworked wireless charging pad made for larger mobile phones, front and rear USB-C outlets, a customisable multi-function button on the steering wheel and newly-designed 4.2-inch digital instrument cluster, adding a sharper look.

Just a mention of Hyundai Bluelink connected car services operating through a 10.25-inch multimedia touchscreen in Elite, Premium and N Line variants. This enables app-based features such as calendar sync, remote services, find my car, remote vehicle check and more. Complementary for the first five years, they are transferrable to subsequent owners during this time.

Engines / transmissions

The entry-level i30 has an upgraded version of the preceding SmartStream G2.0 MPi

engine with efficient Atkinson combustion cycle, two-stage variable intake system and dual-continuously variable valve timing. This is mated with a new SmartStream Intelligent Variable Transmission tuned to copy a conventional automatic transmission, with eight virtual gears and a sequential manual mode, adding to improved efficiency and refined performance.

Fuel consumption is a claimed 6.1 litres per 100 kilometres on the combined urban / highway cycle. The test came up with 9.1 litres per 100 km in the city and 4.8 litres per 100 km cruising the motorway.

Safety Hyundai SmartSense safety features six airbags, forward collision avoidance, driver attention warning, intelligent speed limit assist,smartcruisecontrol,rearoccupantalert, parkingdistancewarning(frontandrear),plus rear-view monitor with dynamic guidelines.


Keyless entry comes via buttons on the key fob but that’s it; no push-button start here. The engine is fired up with an ignition key (remember those?) inserted into a steering column slot. How quaint.

The powertrain soon has the i30 Sedan back in the 21st century with the upgraded 2-litre engine quietly going about its job with little fuss. Power is put to ground via continuously variable transmission taught to mimic a conventional automatic transmission through eight virtual gears, or a sequential manual mode.

Sharp throttle response delivers impressive power and torque together with pleasing fuel efficiency. It’s a refined package well beyond its small sedan ‘pay scale’.

As with most Hyundais the i30 Sedan ride and handling have had the benefit of stand-alone suspension tuning especially designed for Australian conditions. Steering has a respectable linear feel and is helpfully more weighty in Sport driving mode. Speed limit recognition system needs more work, although it can be switched off.


Love it, or hate it, Hyundai has brought a new dimensiontothesmallsedansegmentwiththe MY24 i30.


Tigers ready for new challenge in season 2024

The anticipation is growing ahead of Kyneton’s Riddell District Football League debut.

The Tigers made the move from the Bendigo Football League to the RDFL in the off season and they don’t have to wait long to get things underway.

The Tigers will host Woodend-Hesket in a standalone Good Friday match up before the season kicks off fully on April 6.

New Tigers coach Ethan Foreman said they were all keen to get out there on the field. Paul Chapman coached the side last season before stepping down mid season.

“It’s definitely something different,” he said. “The club is in a good spot.

“There’savibeattheclubthatIhavenotseen before. I’ve grown up playing at the club and never seen this vibe.

“The numbers have been huge and the pre-season has been good.”

Foreman said he puts the vibe down to a few different things.

He said there’s a feeling that they could have some success in this competition after strugglingtomakefinalsintheBendigoleague, while there’s been excitement with a lot of boys coming back to the club in the past couple of years.

“We’ve got locals back home and there’s a good energy at the place,” Foreman said. “We’ve had people off the street who haven’t played for a few years want to play too.

“We’ll play with 19 or 20 one pointers in round one which is huge.”

As well as bringing some young players back to the club, the Tigers have a number of young players ready to make the step up.

Jye Chambers, Cody Young, Brady Muir, Lachlan Thompson and William Armstrong are some of the young ones Foreman is looking

forward to lining up with.

“There’s been huge development in a lot of the younger group that have stepped up to the senior program,” he said

“It’s fairly huge for these guys.”

Foreman said they were expecting a big crowd at Kyneton Showgrounds on Good Friday, with a number of activities to be in place for the crowd.

He said they were hoping it would be the start of a good rivalry on field with the Hawks.

“We’re super excited,” he said. “I’ve grown up with a lot of the Woodend boys and that rivalry will be huge and something to build on for many years.

“Speakingwithafewofthem,they’vekeento build this rivalry too.”

Roos are ready to play

The Sunbury Kangaroos aren’t content with what they did last season in the Essendon District Football League division 2 competition.

The Kangaroos started the season 0-5 under new coach Shanon Carroll before turning the season around and making the grand final. With that experience behind them, Carroll said everyone was keen to make sure that they continued to build momentum.

“We’re very happy with the depth we’ve now got,” he said. “Take the grand final away from our finish to the year, we were able to achieve some success and get the club back to where it once was.

“We were able to get that off field success and now we want to look to have some more on field success.

“We want the coaches that come after me and the players who come after this group to be able to keep the same standards going forward.”

The Kangaroos were one of the big movers early in the pre-season with a number of key signings.

Ben Cannon, Thomas Eiszele, Brandon Smith, Mitch Collins, Lachlan Muir, Kayne Muir, Jake Olivieri, Andrew Siekai, Riley Eales, Rocco Tripodi, Beau Vowles, Cooper Anson and Mitch Johnston have all joined the club.

Carroll said Tripodi had been a standout in the pre-season, while Mitch Collins was another one who had made an impact.

He said he was looking forward to seeing Brandon Smith in ruck with him being an instant hit with the playing group.

Carroll said the improvement from the younger guys was something that he was also looking forward to.

“For these guys it’s their first proper senior pre-season,” he said. “It’s been a decent pre-season and they are feeling it in the legs.

“Riley Eales has been handling the fitness side of things and the boys are doing eight to 10 kilometres every training session.

“They aren’t shirking it and they want more. The attitude to there.”

On the other end, the Kangaroos have lost a bit of experience with Matthew Leonard and Brenton Sutherland retiring and Rhys Magin moving to Queensland.

Cannons select girls squad

Three Sunbury Lions have featured in the Coates Talent League girls squad for the upcoming season.

Charlotte Beattie, Eden Grant and Grace Azzopardi all found their way onto the Cannons list after impressing in domestic competition.

Both Beattie and Azzopardi featured in the Cannons’ 2023 squad.

Azzopardi was named the Lions best first year player last season in the Lions’ senior women’s side.

Otherlocalstomakethesquadinclude Alannah David and Amy O’Kelly from the Gisborne, Gemma Ellis from the Gisborne Rookies and Katrina Bau from Woodend-Hesket.

Bau has also been impressive at the Hawks, finishing third in the senior women’s best and fairest and taking out the rising star award at the club.

The other key out is young forward Brody Watts, who is playing for Avondale Heights this season after originally signing with the Kangaroos.

Carroll said while they wished Watts luck and didn’t want to hold anyone back from playing at a higher level, they had been disappointed with how it played out.

The Kangaroos have two practice matches before round one against Taylors Lakes. The two sides faced off in the preliminary final last year which the Kangaroos won.

“Taylors Lakes are the clear favourites [for the season],” Carroll said. “It will be a good challenge. We have changed a couple of things in terms of structure and set up and it may take a few weeks.

“We’re not so worried about the scoreboard we want to get those things right, but we can’t be 0-5 again, we need to get those things right.

“A lot of clubs have picked up some quality players and I think the competition will be closer again.

“You have to come ready to play every week.”

TheothersinthesquadareAberfeldie’s Shauna McElligott, Kyla Forbes, Laura Churchill, Jasmine Feberache, Amelia Wright and Faith Kassis, Essendon Doutta Stars’ Maddison Spring-Brown, Camryn Bux and Jayla Rutley, Westmeadows’ Ava Gerada and Charlotte Jackson, Strathmore’s Taylah Gilcrist, Matilda Fitzpatrick, Chloe Baker-West and Jasmina Curtis, Fitzroy’s Ellie Sbeghen, Research’s Emmy Graziano, Diamond Creek’s Jade McLay, Craigieburn’s Maddison Albrecht, Moonee Valley’s Michaela Chalhoub, Pascoe Vale’s Milla Murphy, Maribyrnong Park’s Montana Kerr and Saskia Williams and Greenvale’s Talia Motta. The Cannons finished in fifth placelastseasonwithatotalofeightwins and five losses. The side’s finals run came to an end in the first round when they were defeated by 38 points by eventual premiers the Oakleigh Chargers.

.The Cannons will kick off their season against the Northern Knights on April 6

The Coates Talent League is the premier competition for young players looking to make it into the professional system.

Charlotte Beattie (Ljubica Vrankovic) 338826_16
Ethan Foreman (Jacob Pattison)334031_07 The Sunbury Kangaroos are looking to continue building momentum. (Ljubica Vrankovic) 359355_07

Romsey through in thriller against the Kangaroos

Romsey is through to the Gisborne and District Cricket Association McIntyre Cup grand final, but it wasn’t without a fright.

The Redbacks were red hot favourites entering the semi final against the Sunbury Kangaroos, who were playing in their first ever McIntyre final.

The Kangaroos with nothing to lose, pushing the Redbacks all the way, just falling short in the end.

Redbacks captain-coach Ben Way said they were relieved to be back through to another grand final.

“It was a bit close at the end of the day,” he said. “For a large part of the day they took it up to us.

“They were 2-30 and they started to play shots and had a bit of luck and things went their way during the day.

“We’re all keen to be part of another grand final.”

The Redbacks batted first on day one and

piled on the runs as they have all season, making 7-325.

Corey Day top scored with 81 as all of Romsey’s top order got starts. Adam Fearnley took three wickets for the Kangaroos.

Way said they thought they had enough runs on the board, but knew it was a quick outfield at Romsey Park.

Way said the Kangaroos played like a team that knew they had nothing to lose on Sunday.

“They played lots of shots and none of them went to hand,” he said. “It was a long day out in the sun.

“They put it up to us and where they have come from the last couple of years to put up a challenge and a really good game.”

The Kangaroos batted patiently and had plenty of wickets in hand to attack late in the innings.

The total became too much as they were bowled out for 300 in the 76th over. Corey

Woolley top scored with 97 at the top of the order.

Taylor Stevenson took 4-62 for Romsey.

Way said while the game was on the line late, it was an enjoyable last hour of cricket.

“We come together as a team,” he said. “We really put everything on the line and it was a good win with a group of mates.”

The Redbacks, who are looking for back-to-back premierships, will face Gisborne in the grand final.

The Dragons beat Sunbury United in the other semi final.

The two grand finalists are unbeaten this season, with the one match being the teams ending in a draw due to weather.

Way said it’ll be a good challenge.

“We are excited to get out there,” he said. “One of us will lost our first game and we’re hoping that it’s not us.”

Dragons are through

Gisborne put the demons of last season to bed, making it through to the Gisborne and District Cricket Association McIntyre Cup grand final.

Just like 12 months ago, the Dragons entered the semi final with Sunbury United as favourites but this time there would be no upset.

The Dragons fought hard with the bat to set a competitive total, before their experienced bowlers made sure of the win on Sunday.

Captain Jarryd Vernon said there was a lot of relief to have made it through to the final game of the season.

“It’s a pretty good feeling actually,” he said. “We missed out last year in the same game in the semis.

“It was good to bounce back with a strong performance by the boys under a little bit of pressure.”

The Dragons were sent in on their home deck and were in a little bit of trouble at 4-81.

Enter Vernon, who delivered a skipper’s

knock, to help guide the side to 236 with the side bowled out with six overs remaining.

Vernon made 113.

Vernon said while the score was a little bit under par, anything more than 200 was always going to be a good challenge.

“It was a little bit under par, they bowled well,” he said. “To fight it out… and gives ourselves a chance.

“I came in when we were in a little bit of trouble and I had to dig in. It was nice to bat well and help put the team into the final.”

Senura Perera took 5-55 for United.

Vernon said the focus during the week had been to start well with the ball. They executed it perfectly.

“It was a really good start,” he said. “We wanted to take early wickets and we haven’t done that since before Christmas.

“It was a vocal point and two of the best fast bowlers in the competition, Jay King and Leigh Brennan destroyed them early, having them 4-7.

“We were pretty much in control of the

Sports shorts

Australia Cup

Sunbury United’s opponent for the fourth round of the Australia Cup has been revealed. After three wins so far in the competition, United has been drawn to face Heidelberg United in round four which will occur next week. United’s state league 3 north-west season gets underway this week against Altona North.

Big V

The Sunbury Jets two youth league sides started the Big V season with wins on Saturday night. While the state championship sides aren’t in action until April 6, both of the division 2 youth league sides took to the court. The Jets youth league men started their title defence with a 72-49 win against Maccabi. Zac Martinez top scored with 16 points as all 12 players got court time. The Jets youth league women’s side started the season with a 75-37 win a gainst the Surf Coast. Maddison Nash top scored with 12 points as everyone got at least five minutes court time.

Coates Talent League

Calder Cannons’ Thomas Legudi finished in the top five for the 20 metre sprint at the Coates Talent League boys testing day. Players from all Victorian teams tested their skills ahead of the season kicking off. Other Cannons to shine were Harry Albon and Patrick Said who finished top 10 in the yo-yo test.

game after that which was nice. It allows the younger kids to settle in.”

United fought hard behind skipper Upul Fernando, who made 82, but fell well short, bowled out for 169.

Brennan finished with 5-55 off his 26 overs.

Vernon said there had been a lot of hunger to get back into the final game of the season.

“Somuchcanchangein12months,”hesaid. “We looked to bring in a bit more experience this year.

“Not losing a game, there’s been lots of positive performances. We had a good training block this week and we’re excited to see who we play next week.”

A cracking grand final has been set up, with reigning premiers Romsey sneaking home against the Sunbury Kangaroos.

Like the Dragons, Romsey hasn’t lost a game this season, with the one match between the two sides ending in a draw due to weather.

Vernon said the grand final would be a cracker of a game.

“It’s been the two best teams all year,” he said. “It’ll be a cracking contest.”

Coates Talent League

Calder Cannons Maddison Albrecht was one of the stars at the Coates Talent League girls testing day. Players from all Victorian teams tested their skills ahead of the season kicking off. Albrecht finished second in the 20 metre sprint and won the standing vertical jump. She was the only Cannon to feature in the top 10 of any event.


Sunbury & Macedon Ranges Star Weekly

Louis Moor (Jacob Pattison)382206_15 Jarryd Vernon (Jacob Pattison)321161_02

Hawks ready to fly high for the ultimate prize

Woodend-Hesket will be hoping to go one better this season in the Riddell District Football League this season.

The Hawks fell short of the ultimate prize last year in a one-sided grand final against Diggers Rest.

Itwasatoughfinishtoanotherwisepositive season for the Hawks that finished the season in third place with 12 wins and four losses and returned to finals for the first time in more than 10 years.

Perhaps the biggest change for the Hawks this time around is they will be without their veteran goal scorer and playing coach Josh Pound.

Pound regularly featured in the league’s top goal scorers list and last year finished with 30 goals.

But the Hawks were prepared for his departure and have moved quickly to plug the

gap. In November, the club announced the signing of Will Wiseman. Wiseman joins his brother James on

the list, but instead of running around on the wing, Will will be deployed to full forward.

New coach Alistair Rae said he was excited to see what Wiseman will bring to his side. Rae was a kick clog in the Hawks grandfinalrunonfieldandisnowplaying-coa

“He should kick a few, he’s a big boy at six foot six,” he said.

“We’ve focused on adding some speed with all the players we brought in.

“Wewerequiteoldandslowlastyear,alotof peopleover30s,sowesaidlet’sgetsomeyouth and speed and hopefully they hang around.”

Other new faces at the club include Luke Cuffe and Jack Duggan from Strathmore, with Rae using his contacts to bring in some fresh faces.

Daniel Toman will return for the Hawks after having a dominant season last year in his

Vernon hits 1000 runs

Gisborne’s Riley Vernon has made runs for fun this season.

Having spent plenty of time in the middle this season, Vernon in the final round of the Gisborne and District Cricket Association McIntyre Cup season hit his 1000th run for the season.

According to GDCA secretary, Rob McIntyre, who had spoken with other cricketers who have been involved in the association the last 50 years, they don’t recall anyone in the top grade achieving that feat in one season.

Vernon said he knew that his run total for the season was getting up there, but didn’t imagine he would break through the barrier.

“It’s been a pretty good year,” he said. “I certainly did know, I knew I needed 140 or something like that going into the last game.

“I didn’t think I would get 140. At drinks my brother said you need 20 more. I got about five more runs and started to think about it.

“I got there in the end.”

Vernon finished with 148 in the final game

against Woodend to make it 1015 runs for the season, which included four centuries. He has also taken 18 wickets.

The 23-year-old himself puts down the run of form down to a couple of reasons.

“The first reason is I went to England in the last off season so I’ve been hitting a lot of balls,” he said.

“I’ve put a lot of hard work in hitting balls. Even when we’ve been rained off this season, I go to an indoor cricket centre with dad. I love cricket and I’m of the mindset that no one else is doing that.”

Vernon said the other reason was the environment at Gisborne.

Vernon played his junior cricket at the Dragons before stints in Victorian Premier Cricket, Victorian Turf Cricket Association and the Victorian Sub-District Cricket Association.

He said with his brother Jarryd Vernon captain of the Dragons, it was pretty easy to get him to come back to the club.

Vernon said he still wants to play cricket at a higher level in the future. He’s unsure whether he’ll head to England in the off season, but will spend some time in India.

return to his home club.

In 2023, he became the first player from the Hawks to take out the league best and fairest Bowen Medal since 1984.

Rae said this year’s leadership group will be announced before the Good Friday public holiday.

The Hawks will face Kyneton in the first round on Friday March 29 at the Kyneton Showgrounds.

This year will be the Tigers first year featuring senior football and netball in the RDFNL after its request to transfer was confirmed as accepted in September.

In a statement RDFNL chief executive Jordan Doyle said the Tigers joining the league was part of a long term plan to bring another club to the competition.

Women’s EDFL fixture released

Thefullfixturesforthewomen’sEssendon District Football League season are set, with an increase of divisions this season, with all three Sunbury teams in the same division.

Following the recent announcement of the premier division fixture, the remaining schedule for women’s division one, division two and reserves are now available.

Previously,therehadonlybeenpremier division, division 1 and division 2, with reserves teams mixing in.

All round one matches in the women’s EDFL will kick off on Saturday April 13.

The Sunbury Kangaroos remain in division 2 while the Sunbury Lions have dropped down from division 1, with new side East Sunbury also in that division.

Glenroy, Taylors Lakes and Roxburgh Park are other new sides in the division, while Coburg Districts and Pascoe Vale will also have teams in that division.

It will be an all Sunbury affair in round one at Clarke Oval, as the Lions take on the Kangaroos to open the season.

“I’ll be training and playing at the Chennai Super Kings Academy,” he said. “It’ll be an awesome experience playing and training.

“My batting coach Shannon Young, who is coach of Richmond Cricket Club, is this year having a high performance camp over there with premier cricketers and asked me and I was keen.”

Before Vernon heads to India, he is hoping for a big few weeks of finals in the GDCA.

Gisborne finished the regular season in secondspot,withboththeDragonsandminor premiers Romsey undefeated this season.

The Dragons had a disappointing finals season last year and are keen for redemption. On Sunday, they won through to the grand final.

“One hundred per cent,” Vernon said of wanting to make up for last season.

“Definitely last year was disappointing having lost one game for the year and out in the second week of finals.

“Not being able to watch [due to being in hospital] after hitting a ball into my face on the way to 200, there’s definitely hunger there to go a couple of steps further.”

The Lions will be hoping to improve on a tough 2023 campaign in division 1 where they mustered just two wins from 11 games, while the Kangaroos finished strongly after dropping down from division 1 early last season.

EastSunburywillhostTaylorsLakesin its first match.

In division 1, there will only be six teams.

Round one in division one will have a rematch of last year’s second semi final between Greenvale and Burnside Heights wheretheJetsnarrowlydefeatedtheBears in a thriller, although this time it will be played at Greenvale’s home ground.

Greenvalewillbehopingtoimproveon last season’s disappointing finals series. After finishing top of the ladder with just two losses, the Jets lost the grand final by 27 points to third placed finishers Essendon Doutta Stars.

Strathmore, Keilor Park, Tullamarine and Airport West make up the division.

Keilor Park is re-entering the competition after previously having a side.

All divisions will have a three week final series with grand final day slated for August 17.

Jack Arceri. (Ljubica Vrankovic) Riley Vernon (Ljubica Vrankovic)
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