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12 - 18 February 2013 Issue: 450




London’s top spots for romance

Next stop UK

Reflections on a life in crime


entertainment P9

News P4


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n Walkabout Shepherd’s Bush is changing its Sunday operating hours, signalling an end to years of antipodean Sunday afternoon hijinks at the iconic venue.

By Josh Reich The humble Sunday session is set to undergo a radical change, with the Walkabout Shepherd’s Bush to make drastic changes to the way it operates due an increase in crime in the area. The pub, seen by many as the unofficial embassy for the Australian, New Zealand and South African communities in London, will operate a one-way door policy from 4pm on Sundays, the time when revellers usually flock to it. It did not open on Sunday, the first time it has not opened its door in over four years, and will also be closed this coming Sunday, with the one-way policy coming into force seven days later. The changes have come about following discussions with local Police, who have noted an increase in crime in the area on Sunday evenings. “Due to a recent increase in crime on Sunday evenings, and following conversations with Hammersmith Police, we will not be opening for the next two Sundays,” a statement from the pub said late last week. “Following this, we will open as usual at midday on a Sunday from February 24th, but will stop new entries at 4pm, ensuring that all genuine sports fans are able to join us for all live Sunday afternoon sport. “This only affects Sunday evenings and we will open our usual hours every other day of the week. “We’re very sorry for any disappointment this may cause but

A WINE ROMANCE entertainment on Sunday evenings, and is currently in the process of making changes to its drink offerings, which it has been suggested may see an end to the notorious snakebite.

The Shepherd’s Bush Walkabout has been a popular Sunday afternoon ...continued on p3

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The immigration department admits there will be more asylum seeker boat arrivals than expected this financial year as a new boat arrived and figures showed another blowout in costs in managing would-be refugees. Department secretary Martin Bowles told a Senate estimates hearing in Canberra “around 12,000” asylum seekers had arrived by boat already. That’s 12,884 people, while the government budgeted for 12,000 for the 12 months to 30 June, he said on Monday - just hours before the government announced a new boat had been intercepted off the Ashmore Islands with 53 passengers and two crew on board. In the committee hearing, Liberal senator Michaelia Cash queried whether more were expected to arrive. “So, no one else is going to arrive from now and the end of June - is that the prediction?” she asked. Senator Cash pointed to figures released as part of the estimates process that showed costs for dealing with asylum seekers had more than doubled this financial year, from $1.1 billion forecast in the May budget. Mr Bowles conceded the government might revise its expected costs, but said they did not depend only on the numbers arriving. The department is changing the way ...continued on p3

Valentine’s Day travel special | P12 customer safety is at the heart of everything we do, so it’s important that we work together with the police to help reduce crime.” The pub will also make changes to its

More boat arrivals than expected

6/08/12 5:08 PM

2 | News

12 - 18 February 2013

Aussie visa rules unfair to New Zealanders, says Key n New Publisher: Bryce Lowry Editor: Alex Ivett Production/Design: Jackie Lampard News Editor: Paul Bleakley Business Editor: Sepi Roshan Contributors: Catherine Burrell, Tim Martin, Georgia Dawes, Shannon Crane, Phillip Browne, Erin Somerville, Melissa Shortal, Gareth Mohen, George Katralis, Chris Arkadieff, Lee Crossley, Mel Edwards, Bronwyn

Spencer, Emily Banyard, Daniel Shillito, Mat Lyons, Sharon Spence Lieb, Nicole Crowley, Alex BruceSmith, Sandra Tahmasby, Tyson Yates, Amber Rose, Jennifer Perkin, James Martin, Josh Reich, Shannon Loves, Charlie Inglefield Advertising Manager: Dominic Young Directors: P Atherton, J Durrant N Durrant, R Phillips and A Laird

Additional content: Who are we? Australian Times is written and compiled by young Australian journalists living in the UK. Contributing on a volunteer basis, they are uniquely placed to reflect the interests, opinions and attitudes of our community. If you would like to join us, contact Address: Unit 7C, Commodore House Battersea Reach, London SW18 1TW Tel: 0845 456 4910 Email:


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Zealand Prime Minister John Key campaigned for more rights for Kiwis living in Australia, including financial aid and voting privileges, when he met his Australian counterpart Julia Gillard, at bilateral talks in Queenstown. By Paul Bleakley NEW ZEALAND Prime Minister John Key has raised questions over the treatment of New Zealanders in Australia, claiming that the current Australian immigration system unfairly prevents long-term Australian residents from applying for citizenship and obtaining the right to vote or claim government benefits. Key met with Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard in Queenstown last week for the annual bilateral talks between Australia and New Zealand, and said that the rights of New Zealand’s significant emigrant community would be addressed at some point during the two-day summit. The New Zealand Prime Minister’s major criticism of the treatment of Australia’s New Zealander population stemmed from the fact that New Zealander’s were required to pay taxes while working in Australia while being unable to claim financial aid. Key said: “There are a number of factors they need to consider. One of them is obviously the financial implications but then there is whether they think there is fairness in the system as it currently sits,” he said. We always encourage a situation where New Zealanders are treated

Your Say On: Best Australian coffee shops in London

A mate of mine who was “turned onto” Aussie coffee after visiting me in Aus, says that Shoreditch Grind in Old Street and Taylor Street Baristas in the City make the best flat whites he’s had since he got back to the UK. Gaz

On: Aussie visa rules unfair to New Zealanders, says Key

The issue for Australia is that there is a large and growing percentage of society that are second class citizens, who pay taxes but don’t have the same security. Australians like to think they have egalitarian values but in fact they have created a two class society with unequal rights, options and consequences. Australia needs to have a mature debate about its second class citizens. Dave

The major difficulty for those of reaching seniority is that under the current regulations, we can NEVER apply for Australian citizenship because of our age. If that is not discrimination, I don’t know what is. Personally, we are no longer

Every day on …

? What’s your view

well and fairly, but that can have different definitions in different places.” Around 280 000 New Zealand citizens have emigrated to Australia since 2001 and are living in the country on temporary or special category visas. These visas give New Zealanders the right to live in Australia, however precludes them from receiving welfare or voting for their government representation. According to internal documents prepared by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship the government is currently considering a proposal to allow New Zealanders that have lived in the country for over eight years to apply for full citizenship. Australia’s strict immigration quotas and stringent selection criteria is projected to prevent 100 000 New Zealanders living in Australia from ever obtaining citizenship. A spokesperson for the Department of Immigration and Citizenship said that the government was reviewing its policy towards New Zealanders living in Australia, however denied claims that they were being discriminated against and said that they had the same rights to apply for citizenship as anyone else. The disparity in the immigration relationship between Australia and New Zealand demonstrates a higher tendency for New Zealanders

to immigrate to Australia, with Kiwis crossing the ditch at a rate around ten times higher than that of Australians moving to New Zealand. The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade claims that there are over 600 000 New Zealanders living in Australia as opposed to the 65 000 Australians living across the Tasman Sea. The immigration relationship between Australia and New Zealand was solidified through the TransTasman Travel Arrangements of 1973 which allowed citizens of both countries to live, work and travel in either without restriction. This agreement is one of many bilateral treaties governing trans-Tasman relations and was designed to consolidate the traditional regional partnership between the two nations. Prime Minister Key acknowledged the profound difference in transTasman immigration levels in making his remarks about the Australian system, stating that the situation for Australians living in New Zealand was clearly different and that his government had no plans to change the current system.

concerned about welfare, as there is a reciprocal agreement that allows us to get a pension when we retire, but we are very concerned about our basic democratic right to be able to vote.

“this was the PM we had to have” Australians run a serious risk of losing all that was gold about their great country because they expect all that is NOT possible and ignore all that IS possible.


Be good if changes come in! Eilish

On: British vote on samesex marriage sparks fresh debate in Australia

Interesting that an Ozzie knows my country better than I do, so we Dutch have legal 3-way relationships ? Why did no one tell us before? Thanks Mr. Offord. Dutchmen

On: Gillard loses key Cabinet members in ‘planned’ reshuffle

All of Julia Gillard’s other disasters were planned too. ;-) Trevor

It’s hard to salvage anything from this disgusting, second rate, underwhelming and ineffective ALP Govt led by the worst Prime Minister the country has ever had to tolerate. But, in the words (almost) of the second worst,

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Quite sure you haven’t been given all the facts. This was stage managed. A performance worthy of an Oscar. Gillard has known both about these retirements for a year. They were no shock. All done for maximum political gain, and to distract from several ministers being under corrupt investigations, not to mention one being arrested. Pat

On: Coffee Cult visits: The Providores in Marylebone

Alex Ivett, aka Coffee Cult, where were you when I was flying as a Qantas flight attendant on the London route and in need of a good caffeine fix? Your amusing and informative reviews should be compulsory reading for anyone living or visiting London. Maggie

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Howard predicts Rudd challenge FORMER prime minister John Howard says Kevin Rudd - the man who beat him in 2007 - could make a move for the Labor Party leadership before the federal election. Mr Howard says Mr Rudd’s ousting as prime minister in 2010 by Julia Gillard was very unusual. “The extraordinary thing about the politics in the last few years was Kevin Rudd’s removal,” he told the Nine Network on Monday. “It’s very unusual for somebody who wins an election and then they get rid of him before he’s got the chance of going to the next election.” He said Mr Rudd could try for the Labor leadership again before the 14 September election. “Oh, I think it’s quite possible,

yes,” Mr Howard said. “Politics in the end is driven by the laws of arithmetic.” He said the aggressively personal nature of the current parliament was understandable and was due to it being a hung parliament. “The government can’t get clear air because the majority of people didn’t vote for it,” he said. “The opposition thinks `gee they didn’t win’, so they naturally put pressure on. “All of that is very understandable.” It’s not the first time Mr Howard has predicted a comeback for Mr Rudd. Last May he said he believed it was “more likely than not” that Labor would bring Mr Rudd back before the next federal poll. - AAP

Protection visas for alleged people smuggler’s family cancelled ...continued from p1 it processes asylum seekers and moving more people out of detention. “If we actually see more people arrive, but move through the system more quickly and into bridging visas, for instance, as one example, we might actually see a reduction in the overall spend,” Mr Bowles said. The government expects costs relating to its asylum-seeker policy to fall from $2.23 billion in 2012/13 to about $340 million in 2015/16. Opposition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison accused Labor of claiming savings they will never achieve. “You can’t claim the savings of

stopping the boats, if you don’t implement the polices needed to stop the boats, but this is what Labor have done,” he said in a statement. Mr Bowles had earlier admitted Malaysia had not yet agreed to strengthening human rights protections for asylum seekers under the peopleswap deal between the two nations. The two countries have discussed the deal since the federal government’s expert panel recommended last August that Malaysia provide more protections for minors, but no changes to the agreement have yet been made. Meanwhile, the family of an alleged people smuggler known as Captain Emad have had their protection visas cancelled.

Captain Emad, also known as Ali Al Abbasi and Abu Khalid, fled Australia on June 5 last year, a day after an ABC program linked him to a peoplesmuggling operation and discovered he was working in Canberra. His visa was cancelled last year, and he’s believed to be living in Iraq. His son, daughter, daughter-in-law and ex-wife had their protection visas cancelled in January and were served with removal-pending bridging visas. They’ve also been served with humanitarian stay temporary visas. One remaining daughter is still on a protection visa. The family members haven’t been given a removal date and may still be owed protections. - AAP

An end to the Shebu Sunday session? ...continued from p1 watering-hole for more than a decade, drawing well over a thousand high-spirited punters on a busy day. It is a popular destination for those who have been at The Church in Clapham Junction, which finishes at 4pm, many of whom are dressed in eye-catching outfits. Pub management did not want to discuss the changes publicly, but were keen to point out they were proud to be a focal point for the antipodean community and would continue to welcome them. However the changes were necessary to keep their customers and the general public safe. It is understood the increase in crime is not related to serious offences, but incidents that take up valuable police time and resources. The changes come almost a year to the day that The Redback pub in Acton, another favoured drinking haunt of Kiwis and Aussies, was forced to close following complaints by local residents about rowdy behaviour. Another Walkabout in Finchley Rd closed late last year, but management at Shepherd’s Bush were at pains to point out there were no such plans to do the same and they were planning on spending money on sprucing up the pub. Customers and fans of the pub have been quick to air their views on the changes, with opinion divided between those rueing the end of a much-cherished tradition and those blaming the behaviour of patrons for forcing the changes. Divan Gerber said on Facebook:

“What the hell? It’s a tradition going from the Church to the Walkie, just up the damn security as they do with all other events that have security/ crime concerns.” “First the Redback, then the Slug, now this? You’ve changed London!” Lindsay Brown said. “London’s ruining our backpackers tradition,” Michael Mckinley said. Leith McGoodbloke also saw it as the end of an era. “This is a sad day... The Walkie has cancer and will be dead soon. I’m glad I lived in London during the Walkie’s prime. May snakebite Sunday and the great times it facilitated Rest in Peace.” The move found favour with Mike Harris, however. “Champion effort guys. This is a massive hit on one of your busiest days to try and ultimately improve customer safety and experience. “You definitely do not suck, this is not a disgrace, and there are other places people can go (the other Walkies?) “People that do not see this as a step forward for their benefit are obviously too immature or lack life experience to see that this is a necessity. “Grow up haters, find another watering hole for a couple of weekends, London doesn’t lack them, or go see the sights. Isn’t that why you are here? “I’m pretty sure you can be a bit more productive with two free Sundays not in the pub, or is that too hard for you?”

Musical Director Barry Robinson Sexy, and very effective theatre.. a great night out. **** Sunday Express

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Wednesday 13th February

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4 | Exclusive Interview

12 - 18 February 2013

‘Diamond Jim’ Shepherd

n On the 30 year anniversary of Terry Clark’s death at the helm of the Mr Asia syndicate, PAUL BLEAKLEY talks to his once right-hand man about the heroin trade, today’s ‘paper gangstas’ and what happens to criminals as they get old.

Diamond Jim Shepherd was on his Terry Clark, as an associate of the way to London to kill drug trafficker Mr Asia syndicate. He says that it and serial murderer Terry Clark when was his underworld credibility and he discovered that his former associate criminal connections that allowed had been arrested for murder. Clark to access Australia’s largely Shepherd had spent most of 1979 untapped drug market and obtain looking for a way out of the Mr protection from corrupt members Asia syndicate, alarmed by the of the legal community. Shepherd increasingly erratic and paranoid remained by Clark’s side throughout behaviour of Terrence John Clark. the syndicate’s time in Australia, The drug tsar had bragged to surviving where other associates Shepherd about the murders that like Greg Ollard, Julie Theilman, he had committed, “Pommy” Harry Lewis many of whom had Doug and Isabel “He, Clark, had and been former friends Wilson did not. delusions of or business partners. According to Shepherd, Clark’s spiralling he and Clark were able taking over the to cultivate cocaine addiction the relatively London markets. small-scale drug trade in had only served to increase his Australia after their arrival paranoia, and Shepherd believed that in the country in 1975 by providing a he would be next on the hit-list. quality product that was able to force A trip back to Australia confirmed other suppliers out of business. He Shepherd’s worst fears: his old says that future research into the drug friend, Australian criminal identity trade will pinpoint Clark’s brief reign at Bob Trimbole, told him that Clark the top as “the genesis for all the drug had asked him to organise Shepherd’s dealing we see today”. death while he was in Australia. It Shepherd said: “When Clark was at that point that Shepherd made first started in Australia, there was the decision to end Clark’s murderous a market but not a large one. He rampage once and for all: he would developed through people like me, go back to Clark’s base in London the drug markets that we see today. and beat him to it. It took about six months for Clark to Shepherd says that he had made set up his markets, but once he did, the decision to kill Clark because he the heroin market really took off. refused to spend the rest of his life By being able to supply his dealers looking over his shoulder, waiting with a constant supply of high grade to be murdered. Shepherd told product, Clark was able to capture Australian Times that he would not complete market share. If you are a have given Clark a chance to defend dealer, a constant supply of top quality the allegations made against him heroin - which is what Clark was able upon returning to London, surprising to supply - is a licence to print money. Clark by killing him before he had the Any opposition was buried by Clark’s chance to murder Shepherd himself. ability to do this through his dealers.” Shepherd told Australian Times: “I When Clark left Australia for was not going to London to confront London, fleeing the increasing police Clark. I was heading back there to pressure after the discovery of Doug do to him what he was trying to do and Isabel Wilson’s bodies in 1979, to me. There would have been no Shepherd followed and attempted to discussions. I do not have a problem help Clark expand the syndicate’s with killing people who are trying to drug trafficking operation into the kill me. Most people, whether you are British market. He says that Clark a criminal or not, if forced to make was “very serious” about taking over a choice between killing someone or the British markets that his associate being killed themselves, will take the Marty Johnstone had set up, and that latter choice. Self-preservation is a they had made significant progress in great motivator.” the months before Clark’s arrest. Shepherd was a career criminal Shepherd said: “They moved a in New Zealand before signing up fair bit of product over there during with Marty Johnstone, and later a short period of time. He, Clark, had delusions of taking over the London markets. Whilst drug crazed criminals are dangerous, they are not nearly as dangerous as clear thinking, drug free criminals of a similar ilk.” Shepherd was in Hong Kong when he saw the headlines proclaiming that Clark had been arrested for Marty Johnstone’s murder. Instead of going back to London, he flew to the United States of America where he remained until his extradition to Australia in 1985. He ‘Diamond Jim’ Shepherd and Neddy Smith

served fourteen years of a twenty-five year sentence in prison, ultimately released in 1998. Terry Clark died in HM Prison Parkhurst thirty years ago, in 1983. While the official coroner’s report claims that he had died as the result of a massive heart attack, Shepherd believes that Clark was murdered. He claims that Clark had been vocal about selling heroin to members of the IRA, a firmly anti-drug organisation that would have had the opportunity and the motive to murder the New Zealand drug lord. Shepherd says that “old style” criminals like him have largely been killed off by the impact of drugs as the primary source of income in underworld circles. He refers to young criminals as “paper gangsters” and says that they “are not a patch on the guys (he) knew growing up or later associated with.” Shepherd said: “Criminals evolve organically. In my case I started off as a petty thief, evolved into a safecracker and armed robber, then on realising in my thirties how much money was available in drugs, became involved in drug dealing. Most of the active old style criminals I know today, are all involved in drugs. Money, large amounts of money, that is what does it.”

“We were a nasty group of individuals” Now in his seventies, Diamond Jim Shepherd is brutally honest about his past career as a drug trafficker. Shepherd, who still holds the record for the most heroin sold in Australia, is very clear that he wants people to understand that he and the other members of the Mr Asia syndicate “were a nasty group of individuals”. Looking back on his tumultuous years with the Mr Asia syndicate, Shepherd told Australian Times: “I remember having a drink a few years ago with another old, notorious criminal and he asked me the rhetorical question...”What happens to old crims like us Jim?” I said mate we either end up dead, in prison serving a long sentence, or someone writes a book about us! So far I have avoided the first two and decided to write the book myself.” Diamond Jim Shepherd’s book Mr Asia: Last Man Standing was published in 2010 by Pan Macmillan Australia.

I do not have a problem with killing people who are trying to kill me...Whilst drug crazed criminals are dangerous, they are not nearly as dangerous as clear thinking, drug free criminals of a similar ilk.

Terry Clark

‘Diamond Jim’ Shepherd

The ‘Mr Asia’ syndicate:

30 years on It has been 30 years since Australia’s most notorious drug trafficking organisation finally collapsed under the combined weight of murder, betrayal and a whole lot of heroin. It did not end in an elaborate police operation in Sydney, or a hail of bullets in Melbourne. It ended in a lonely prison cell on the Isle of Wight, the result of “natural causes”. Terrence John Clark died in HM Prison Parkhurst in August, 1983, the coroner’s report ruling heart attack, two years after Clark had been found guilty of the murder of his business partner Marty Johnstone by a British court. The man that had revolutionised Australia’s criminal underworld had come to a relatively anonymous end, far away from the country that he had helped corrupt as one of the leaders of the Mr Asia syndicate. The Mr Asia syndicate was born in a similarly obscure manner: when Marty Johnstone, Andy Maher and Peter Fulcher were introduced to Singaporean ship-hand “Chinese Jack” in 1973 they were little more than petty criminals. Their connection with Chinese Jack gave them the sudden ability to import large quantities of cannabis, turning them into major players in the New Zealand drug scene almost overnight. Attracting respected career criminals like safe-cracker ‘Diamond’ Jim Shepherd and aspiring villains like Terry Clark, the syndicate soon moved to the untapped market across the Tasman Sea in 1975. Clark ruled the Australian drug world with an iron-fist, however the rising death toll of his empire began to attract the attention of honest police around the country. Clark

was forced to flee Australia after the discovery of Doug and Isabel Wilson’s body in a shallow grave in 1979, by which time he was believed to have murdered twelve associates in a paranoid attempt to control his burgeoning empire. Clark and right-hand man Diamond Jim Shepherd arrived in London determined to take over the UK drug market in the name of the Mr Asia syndicate. By this stage Clark had degenerated into a paranoid cocaine addict, jumping at shadows and determined that his closest associates were plotting against him. His downfall – the decision that his old friend Marty ‘Mr Asia’ Johnstone had to go, commissioning Johnstone’s best friend Andy Maher to do the deed. Marty Johnstone’s mutilated corpse was discovered in a flooded quarry in north-west England, his hands chopped off and teeth smashed in. He was virtually unrecognisable, except for the iconic golden pendant that still hung around the neck of his corpse. It did not take long for a remorseful Andy Maher to admit to the murder when confronted by British police. Clark was arrested in London on 31 October, 1979, and charged with the murder of Marty Johnstone. The Mr Asia syndicate collapsed: Johnstone was dead, Maher died in prison in 2011 and Clark’s heart exploded on the Isle of Wight four years after his arrest. This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of Clark’s death, yet the full story of the Mr Asia syndicate continues to unfold and the true horror of their criminal reign remains to be seen.

UK Life | 5

Singing in the rain at the Barbican

n Sick of the wet weather? At a unique art installation, the Rain Room, our resident adventurer discovers all the joys of the rain, whilst still staying dry, visiting #40 on the TimeOut London Top 100 – the Barbican Centre. bron in


Living in a city like London, which experiences its fair share of rain each week, it is hard to believe that I would go out and actively seek bad weather on the weekend. However, a new interactive art installation at the Barbican Centre – number 40 on the TimeOut London Top 100 – challenged me to change my mind. The Rain Room, open until 3 March, is one of the most unusual experiences in London I have come across, and many other Londoners must agree – given the crowds. Warned that the wait on the weekends can get up to three hours long, we tried to arrive at around 10.15am, 45 minutes before it opens, to snag an early spot in the line. Even with the head start we had to wait over two hours, and finally got into the exhibition about 12.30pm. We were lucky that we had a group of about five people, so we spent the time chatting away and catching up. Others around us had come prepared with books, packs of cards and movies on tablets. Once finally inside, we were led into a dark curving tunnel. All we could hear was the sound of the rain pouring down, and all we could see was people’s shadows on the wall. It was an eerie feeling, heightened by the fact it is difficult to predict what is coming next. As you walk around the corner the first thing that hits you is a bright spotlight that illuminates the rain pouring down. Walking into the 100 square metre area of falling water in pairs, you can’t help but think you are about to get soaking wet. However the sensors can tell where you are

and it automatically prevents the rain from pouring on you. Although you occasionally get a few drops here and there, overall you end up coming out of it high and dry. We stayed there for a long while, testing how we could stop the rain – walking in groups or stretching out our arms and legs. It is a unique experience to walk straight into pouring water and stay dry, although the sensors have trouble picking up black so make sure you wear bright colours. Although the wait is worthwhile, the Barbican Centre is also home to many other different types of arts and cultural experiences. This multi-arts centre is one of the leading arts and learning organisations in the world. It hosts art exhibits, installations, theatre and film throughout the year. The Centre is also home to the London Sympathy Orchestra which I hope to see on my next visit to visit this beautiful building.

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men may think they have perfected the art of male bonding with their footy match getaways, but it has nothing on the British lad’s weekend for shared shame. heavy drinking and debaucherous glory.


Australian men have always perpetuated the idea that we have a very strong culture of male bonding in our country. There is nothing better than getting the boys together for an esky full of ice cold beers and a game of football on television. Every true blue Aussie bloke has some kind of ‘man cave’ to retreat into, whether it is a tin-roofed shed in the backyard or the traditional men-only ‘pool room’. In Australia, the lad’s weekend is not an uncommon thing. A group of boys may go down the coast for a surfing trip, or interstate for an

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Lad’s weekend


The Rain Room is on at The Curve, Barbican Art Gallery until 3 March 2013. Opening hours are 11am-8pm daily, and 10pm on Thursdays.

important football match. There is always heavy drinking and sore heads. Although these lost weekends provide the type of bonding that typifies a boy’s trip away, British lads seem to commit to lad’s weekends with an enthusiasm and gusto that would put the wildest of party animals to shame. I happened to come across the Channel 4 documentary What Happens in Kavos recently, which focuses on the revels of British partygoers on the Greek island of Corfu over the peak summer period. Many of the featured holidaymakers were on the mythical lad’s weekend and within the first episode the documentary had shown an island that had descended into pure debauchery: one man was forced to

drink his friend’s urine as punishment for sleeping with the same girl three times while another was forced into emergency surgery after an unfortunate sexual encounter led to his pride and glory being horrifically mangled. The excitement of a boy’s trip away comes from being in a foreign environment where a group of young men can act completely wild without fear of embarrassing themselves in pubs and clubs that they frequent on a regular basis. The lad’s weekend bonds a group of boys through a mixture of shared shame and relived glory. It is no wonder that British men have perfected the art of the lad’s weekend considering the vast array of locations easily accessible just across the English Channel. While places like Kavos or Ibiza might be prime locations during the summer months, the winter offers up the depravity of Prague or the everubiquitous Amsterdam. Groups of British lads can literally take their pick of locations throughout Europe where they are able to throw up on the side walk, make clumsy attempts to seduce women and shave off their mate’s eyebrow while he is asleep. That being said, it is only about £8 on Megabus to go to Cardiff. Meet you at Victoria Station?

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6 | UK Life

12 - 18 February 2013

Tunnel of Love tube talk > Sandra Tahmasby

After putting the Tube love theory to its test I still wonder, can you really find love in a big city? I have never been one for the big romance. You know, the birds in the sky and the violins in the background. I don’t do flowers and puppies, and much prefer a good game of rugby and a few pints at the pub. I’ve been single for almost two years now, and I wonder if I will ever find a love like the love that I get from the Tube. Just like my imaginary love (the Tube), my knight in shining armour doesn’t have to be perfect. All I want is for someone to take me to places I have never been before, to keep me warm, to remind me to ‘mind the gap’ and someone who will carry my (emotional) baggage. Is that really so much to ask for? After being in a relationship for 5 years, Valentine’s Day is merely just another day to us single

ladies (put your hands up!). Where is my Mr. Right? It seems like all guys these days are only my Mr. Right now. Could it be the guy I play pingpong eyes with every morning on my way to work, awkwardly avoiding eye contact for longer than 5 seconds? Maybe the guy that offered me his seat? Or did he mistake my wine belly for a baby bump? Or is he the guy that pushed me out of the way to make sure he was on the tube before the doors closed on him? The road to true love is never smooth. Who am I kidding? I’m not going to find him on the Tube. This Valentine’s Day I’ll be having a few sneaky sippies with the girls. My girlfriends are better than Mr Right now anyway! I’m not looking for Prince Charming but maybe Prince Charming in training will do?

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‘Bleak winds and plumping rain’ Edinburgh Expat > Tyson Yates

Edinburgh is sometimes referred to as the ‘City of Literature’, or ‘Athens of the North’. The latter of course reflecting Edinburgh’s role as a major intellectual centre during the Enlightenment and NOT a tongue-in-cheek dig at the city’s very un-Mediterranean climate. Probably. The former reveals Edinburgh’s affinity with its literary heroes. Late last month – around the same time as us Aussies in the UK were salvaging what we could of Australia Day (which as we all know marks the day Triple J came down from that mountain carrying with them a list of bands that would become the Hottest 100) – Scots were downing drams and reading aloud an homage to haggis as they celebrated Burns Night. This nation-wide celebration of the country’s best-loved bard, Robert ‘Rabbie’ Burns, sees plenty of events taking place throughout the Scottish capital, but this is not the only affection Edinburgh musters for its artists.

A stroll down Princes Street will be cut short as you stop and marvel at the gothic monument dedicated to Sir Walter Scott. If you skip just one street along, you will find yourself in the immediate vicinity of two pubs honouring literature icons - the first being Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (think, Sherlock Holmes) and the second in both name and theme dedicated to the Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde – a novel by the Edinburgh born and bred Robert Louis Stevenson (also see Treasure Island). Strange indeed is this relationship between a city with infamously temperamental weather and those who have the ability to aptly describe it. In the 19th century, when literary figures did not have the perpetually incomplete tram system to bear the brunt of their frustration, much detail was devoted to the very thing that kept them indoors and writing: wind and rain. A plight I am all too familiar with as I now find myself trapped in a soulless coffee franchise that I will avoid naming just as they avoid paying taxes. Cyclonic winds, torrential rain, sunshine and snow; of course we Aussies are not unfamiliar with extreme weather, we are just used to experiencing these elements at different

times of year, in different parts of a very big country, not all in one place before brunch. Do we do brunch? I bet Melbourne does brunch. While my own description of Edinburgh’s weather can be dismissed under that age old fable of the Aussie who ventured too far and now can’t find his way back to the beach – a word from Robert Louis Stevenson himself may help to shed some light, as the sky here rarely does. On Edinburgh he says: “No situation could be more commanding for the head city of a kingdom; none better chosen for noble prospects… But Edinburgh pays cruelly for her high seat in one of the vilest climates under heaven. “The weather is raw and boisterous in winter, shifty and ungenial in summer and a downright meteorological purgatory in the spring. The delicate die early, and I, as a survivor, among bleak winds and plumping rain, have been sometimes tempted to envy them their fate.” So, there you have it. Edinburgh’s weather can be blue skies one minute, storm clouds the next. A single day can boast both sun and snow. It is harmless then ruthless. It truly is a case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.

Love in the time of third wheels n This Valentine’s Day ALEX IVETT finds out there is only one thing worse than the cross-continental set-up from well meaning Aussie friends and family - being the third wheel on someone else’s blind date.

IT’S the rite of passage all Australians moving to London must go through. The cross-continental introduction by a mutual friend, followed by the awkward first meet up arranged through super-polite texts until you discover a shared love of tequila shots and you’re to be found at 3am the next morning bonding over the finale of Offspring you had to stream on the internet (awwww, Nina + Patrick = 4ever). Normally, it’s just the friend of a friend, and a vital part of establishing your network when you first move to a new city. Usually, because you have a friend in common, you inevitably will be able to fill the conversation space of one coffee, if only because you can gossip about your mutual friend. If you’re lucky and that goes well, you might be able to turn that coffee into a beautiful friendship, where you skip gaily through Regents Park together, tinkly laughing and tossing your hair in the afternoon sun. However, sometimes the introduction is a trans-Atlantic version of the show ‘Date My Son’. A well-meaning attempt by extended relatives concerned by your long shelf-life and shriveling ovaries which they take it upon themselves to address by running their own

informal international dating service. “Oh, you’re moving to London?” a good family friend might mention casually. “Well, you must look up my bosses nephew. He’s about your age.” Or your Aunt might mention her drycleaners son has just moved to the UK. Or your Mum helpfully identifies that the chemist’s daughter’s exboyfriend lives just one stop from you on the Underground. And, wouldn’t you know it, now single! Or, as has recently happened to my friend – her Italian Grandma’s bingo partners great nephew. True story. Never mind that she’s already well established in London. Never mind she’s never met her grandma’s bingo partner, or has any interest in going out with her great-nephew. No, it should be enough that Nonna has established he’s a banker. With his own apartment in Fulham. “And did I tell you he cooks for himself?” Though should we really be so impressed by a grown man who lives alone occasionally demonstrating an ability to bake his own cannelloni instead of having his Nonna internationally ship over some frozen lasagnes (like his women?). But, you can’t say no to your Grandma, can you? Which is why my friend found herself agreeing to a blind date with someone she had already pre-stalked on Facebook and already decided was not for her (don’t judge – you’ve all done it). And which is why I found myself accidently also on the date as buffer.

Imagine his surprise when, expecting to turn up for an intimate tete-a-tete with a sophisticated, charming, pretty young lady of fellow Italian origin, he instead turned up for an intimate tete-a-tete with the former….…. And me. I may as well have popped out from behind my friend, Brady Bunch style, and yelled: “Romantic dinner for two? Not bloody likely! And keep your hands where I can see them…’ Needless to say, the date did not go well. To be fair to him, I was a bad date. I took charge of the menu. I over-ordered the sharing dishes (without establishing first that yes, in fact, he didn’t mind sharing). I ate everything. I spilt food on myself (yes that happened). I didn’t engage in conversation or ask any questions about him, and I played with my phone. Just short of ordering a bottle of Krug on his tab, sculling it all and then making out with a waiter, I don’t think I could have demonstrated worse table manners. To be fair to me, it wasn’t my date. Also, to his credit, he behaved impeccably. He asked my friend pertinent questions about herself, he nodded politely. He enquired about her family and complimented her outfit. However, it’s hard to create the appropriate atmosphere of romance and intimate banter when there’s a third person sitting opposite you, silently assessing your first date skills whilst chewing crispy duck with their mouth open and trying to get mushu pork sauce out of their shirt with their diet coke. And, after all that, he paid for us both. To him, thanks for the free dinner, and my sincerest apologies. Better luck on the next episode of Date My Son. And to my mother’s chemist’s daughter’s ex-boyfriend, I promise to behave better should she ever prove successful at forcing contact.

UK Life | 7

What’s On Valentine’s Day Show At The Grand 14 February The Clapham Grand, Clapham Junction The Australian Pink Floyd Show 25 February @ London 02 Arena The Rubens 27 February @ Scala Olivia Newton-John 13 March @ Royal Albert Hall Tommy Emmanuel 16 March @ Shepherd’s Bush Empire The Jezabels 22 March @Barfly Camden Pam Ann 28-29 March @ Hammersmith Apollo Sarah Blasko 11 April @Barbican Centre Tame Impala 25 June @ Hammersmith Apollo

For full details... ...and more Aussie gigs go to:

See what we are following this week on

#Gotye TheKaptone @thekaptone Well done #Gotye for your three Grammies and well done #triplej for your work on promoting Aussie music StKiKs @St_KiKs #Gotye has won Grammy for Record of the Year with 3 Grammies...took me weeks to get THAT song out of my head, it’s back again, aaargh!! Carmen Forman @ CarmenMForman Did anyone actually listen to the rest of the #Gotye album besides “Somebody that I used to Know”? Answer- NO Dara Bankole @dara_ bankole I think almost everyone has had a overly dramatic moment singing Somebody That I Use to Know. #Gotye #welldeserved Kaye Sera @MissKayeSera Hey Mr Gotye congratulations. Any chance of writing a couple more verses for Somebody That I Used To Know? @GotyeHQ #grammy #Gotye #tooshort

Follow us on Twitter @AustralianTimes

The Tough Mudder Aussie Times challenge n With only 13 weeks until Tough Mudder, it has taken the addition of a personal trainer to our merry crew to finally force this human chocolate hobnob (me) into action.

By Alex Ivett YOU may all be wondering why, as I previously promised with such bravado, there haven’t been weekly updates of how the Tough Mudder training is coming along. After making the rash public commitment to a strict training regime to get myself ready for the 25 obstacle, 18 km monolith that is Tough Mudder on 4 May, I imagine you all expected I would prove a dedicated and enthusiastic convertee. That I would be regularly tweeting updates on how I just bench pressed 10 kilograms (let’s be realistic), or boasting about a new found ability to parkour around London – jumping over bicycle racks or using Oxford Street as a slalom running track. Well, TM supporters, I have so far failed you. There has been no lengthy runs in the muddiest park I can find, occasionally commando rolling my way through a particularly appealing looking slop puddle just for the hell of it. And there definitely has been no weights sessions to help develop the kind of upper arm strength one could use to get across the monkey bars obstacle, or at least to take on Madonna in an arm wrestle. Like TFL, I blame the snow. And cold. And rain. And the dark too, because, well, why not. It’s certainly not my fault that every time I stand on the threshold of my front door, dressed to exercise, a sudden gust of sleet and wind literally blows me back into the hallway, through the kitchen and deposits me on the couch in the living room – bizarrely dressed back in my trackpants and ugg boots. Isn’t nature amazing? The only thing that has been achieved in the training program, besides a few gym visits, is one

attempted circuits class. For those of you who haven’t yet been subjected to the curious torture that is circuits class, it involves a repeated half an hour circuit (yes, there is method to Fitness First’s madness) of different types of contortionist exercises around a room, each for one minute each. It essentially means 15 different ways for me to fail in front of a group of spectators, rather than just the usual one. “Get up,” the trainer said when she saw me lying face down, panting, during the plank. “Get up,” she said again when I got busted sitting casually on the step during tricep dips. “For god’s sake, get up,” she yelled when my attempts at a sit up slightly toned those muscles in your neck you see when someone’s fake smiling too hard, but came no where near engaging anything remotely connected to my ‘core’. “Oh I give up,” she said when I turned

lunges into the similar, but potentially less graceful, lunge with the added side stumble into your neighbour as he tries to balance the equivalent of Madonna’s body weight above his head. Well, fear not TM supportees, and potential TM participants! This time next week, things are all due to change. We have 4 new team members, and our very own fitness trainer, dedicated to whipping our motely crew into shape with weekly training sessions on a Sunday afternoon near Clapham. And, with weekly sessions, comes weekly updates. As Michael McCormick, our PT extradoinare, reminds me – Tough Mudder is now only 13 weeks away. With this in mind, he’s devised us a specialized 12 week program he promises will produce great results very quickly. So long as it doesn’t involve a circuits class, or rain, I think we’re going to get along just fine.

What we’re looking for: •  Any Aussie who enjoys a run around, keen to get involved in this great event. •  Any Aussie already signed up, who wants to meet other people doing it. •  A great way to get fit, meet some new Aussies in London and tick rolling around in mud, a lot of mud, off your bucket list. Email editor@australiantimes. with Tough Mudder in the subject if you’re interested in joing the Aussie Times team.

Australia House hosts launch of Frenchmans Cap: Story of a Mountain

n On Thursday 7 February Australia House played host to the UK

launch of a book detailing the history of a Tasmanian and Australian wilderness icon – Frenchmans Cap.

Frenchmans Cap: Story of a Mountain by Simon Kleinig, renowned author and wilderness enthusiast, brings to life a collection of stories which define the mountain’s journey from its geological genesis through colonial times to the modern era. It is a rare insight into not only the mountain itself, but the history and development of a unique area of Tasmania, and the colourful characters that helped shaped these stories. Queensland Agent-General Mr Ken Smith welcomed guests, and thanked the book’s Queensland publishers, Interactive Publications. He also noted his soft spot for the unique beauty and inspiring rugged landscape of Tasmania and its wilderness areas, and acknowledged the important

High Commissioner Mike Rann, Author Simon Kleinig and AgentGeneral for Queensland Ken Smith

role Frenchmans Cap had played in the development of a strong environmental consciousness in Australia. High Commissioner to the UK, Mike Rann, offered his support for the book, saying it was an “extraordinary series of interwoven stories” and a unique way to tell the history of the Cap by intertwining a colourful procession of characters with the historical and geological details. Author Simon Klenig, an Australian writer living in London and Honorary Secretary at London Legacy, thanked guests for attending and spoke of his wish for the book to convey the important role of the mountain in Australia’s history and his hope that it would contribute to a celebration of all the wild places in the world that need preserving. Tourism Tasmania provided drinks and finger food, including Tamar Ridge Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc. With a visual display of beautiful iconic Tasmanian scenes projected onto the wall throughout the evening, guests were temporarily transported from cold and wintery London far away to the craggy peaks of wild Tasmania. For a detailed and engaging history of Tasmania’s wildness icon, Frenchmans Cap by Simon Kleinig is available online at Amazon and from leading bookshops.

8 | Food & Wine

Dinner Date

If you’re looking for somewhere to seriously impress that special someone this Valentine’s Day you won’t find many better than these classy London restaurants, all laying on a special promotion with a twist on February 14th. Sometimes it’s worth pushing the boat out for the more memorable experience that these places guarantee.

12 - 18 February 2013

– ‘The Early Escape’ – is a 3-course meal incorporating some of the menu’s best dishes like Dorset snails and Mrs Beeton’s snow egg, from 3-7pm. At £35pp, it offers exceptional value for this venue. If you’ve a bit more cash to splash, the exclusive bespoke menu from 8pm - including aperitifs, canapés and chocolates - is £80pp.

every couple to take home. All for £30pp, you can’t go wrong.


Royal Exchange, EC3V 3LR

Coffee Cult visits: Allpress Espresso in Shoreditch

By Alex Ivett

tell you what), you really can’t go wrong with the mix plate of fresh avocado, roast tomato, boiled egg, thinly sliced cheese and prosciutto or smoked salmon, with toasted sourdough and rosemary focaccia on the side – all for £7. Simple, filling, delicious.


100 Wardour St, W1F 0TN

The Gilbert Scott

St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, NW1 2AR

The venue: London venues don’t get much grander than Grade I-listed St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, the Victorian Gothic masterpiece towering over the Eurostar terminal. Within it lies an elegant high-walled restaurant space named after the building’s architect, Sir George Gilbert Scott, and helmed by Marcus Wareing, one of the best British chefs of his generation. With its massive windows, corniced roof and limestone pillars, it retains the same grandeur as would have greeted diners in 1873 when it first opened. In keeping with this history, Wareing’s retro menu is steeped in nostalgia, paying homage to British classics from the pages of old cookery books. Eccentric standouts include a pig’s head fritter starter and Mrs Beeton’s snow egg for pudding, while the Gower Peninsula fisherman’s stew main course typifies the regional produce on which the menu is based. The wine list is a bit more international, as is the enthusiastic waiting staff, who are happy to offer their own personal recommendations when the choosing gets tough. One look at the menu and you’ll see why. The deal: Two special Valentine’s Day menus are on offer. The first

The venue: On Soho’s Wardour Street in the heart of the West End sits an Indian restaurant that ticks boxes most others don’t tick, most importantly with its ambience and the quality and value of menu. Named after both an Indian spice and an Indian snooker-style game, Carom lies in the capable hands of executive chef Balaji Balachander, who has risen from the streets of Chennai to the Michelin-starred Benares before taking charge at this, D&D’s first Indian restaurant. His menu of authentic regional and pan-Indian dishes of varying sizes encourages a wider, more sharing experience. Highlights include tender lamb cutlets marinated with papaya and green chilli and a Kerala fish curry in a mango and coconut sauce. The venue itself is part of the Meza complex, with Floridita below and Carom occupying the spacious ground floor fronted by a lively bar and lounge – its cocktail list offers signature India-inspired creations that you won’t find anywhere else. Chiffon curtains, dark furnishings and some private booths make for an atmospheric setting, and the service does everything justice. The deal: Watch Carom’s favourite romantic movie - Pretty Woman - in its cosy lounge with some speciallyprepared chocolate-chilli popcorn and a complimentary Valentine’s cocktail, before (or after) a threecourse meal concluded with a ‘lovebox’ sharing dessert selection. Plus a Valentine’s goodie-bag for

Serving up a strip

n Head chef at Maze Grill, Chris Arkadieff,

shows us how to serve up the perfect strip loin, with the added flavour of roast marrow sauce.



> CHRIS ARKadieff

Here at Maze Grill we source aged British strip loins on the bone. The bone enhances the beef flavours, especially during the char grilling process. The bone marrow is sourced form the shin bone of the cow. Ask your local butcher for bone marrow rings. With the end of a wooden spoon push the centre out of the bone and rinse under cold water for ten minutes to remove any impurities. The bones are great for making stock and will keep in the freezer for months. Bone marrow is a great addition to enhance the beefy flavours in any sauce or sautés.

What you need

12-14oz Beef strip loin on the bone.

Sauce • 150g bone marrow • 250ml reduced beef glaze • 2 tsp chopped tarragon leaves • 1 small shallot finely chopped • Salt and pepper to season • 3 bulbs of young garlic cut in half • 100g soft unsalted butter • 3 sprigs of fresh thyme • Salt and pepper to season

What to do

• On a high heat place a heavy cast iron grill plate or skillet. • Season the strip lion with salt and pepper and brush with cooking oil. • When the grill is hot, place the steak on the grill and cook on one side

The venue: If it’s a view you’re after beyond your handsome partner then look no further than Sauterelle, situated on the mezzanine level of the Grade I-listed Royal Exchange complex next to Bank Station. Its interior windows offer an impressive view of the historic central courtyard below, while the exterior ones look out across the grand Old Lady of Threadneedle Street. It may be a favoured haunt of City gents and ladies but its atmosphere is relaxed and jovial, thanks in no small part to the attending head waiters, while its set menus are affordable and offer great value for this part of the capital. Head chef Arnaud Delanney of Provence brings more than seven years of Michelin-star experience to your table, with a fine dining menu of contemporary French cuisine in classic Provençale style. Everything is served and presented immaculately, making Sauterelle one of the rare City venues that hits the mark on all fronts: food, service, atmosphere and location – in this case London’s beating heart with striking views to match. The deal: Not three but six amazing courses from the head chef’s repertoire including scallops with caviar d’Aquitain and Goosnargh duck breast with caramelized chicory, priced £55 with champagne. And if any gents are feeling particularly flush this month and want to make a serious romantic gesture, Sauterelle have teamed up with 200-year-old jewellers Boodles of Bond Street, to serve at the end of the meal a 1.5 carat Ashoka-cut diamond ring, exclusive in the UK. Available from February 7-21, priced £6,250.

Before arriving in London almost 12 months ago, I had already resigned myself to the prospect of a decent coffee free existence once UK based. There is a perception in Australia, spread through hushed whispers behind closed doors, that London is two beans short of a full cappuccino – that it can’t, or won’t, put on a decent brew for those who appreciate a finely poured flat white. I’m sorry to say I bought into the rumours, the slanderous gossip spread by those back home trying to convince you to stay Down Under for fear you’ll go off coffee, convert to wheatgrass shots and suddenly start boring them with Facebook posts about your attempts to make raw vegan carrot cake. What’s more, after a few initial disastrous experiences, I’m ashamed to admit I added fuel to the fire – fanning the flames of anti-London sentiment with my inability to find a good brew. That is, until my friend took me to Allpress in Shoreditch, and I had the coffee that would become the first step of my long love affair with Antipodean coffee shops in London.

The Craic Busy. Casual chic busy. The place bustles with energy, a mix plate of people waiting patiently to order then squeezing themselves onto hard to nab tables, along the bar to oversee the baristas at work, or onto the share table piled with papers. Though, with its corner location on trendy Redchurch Street, there is also nothing better than grabbing a takeaway on a rare sunny day and perching on the outside benches to watch local Londoners heading to nearby Brick Lane.

The Connection It can’t get more Antipodean than being a UK branch of a brand already popular in New Zealand and Australia. Started by New Zealander Michael Allpress to supply roasted coffee to local NZ cafes, it expanded to Sydney with the help of Sydneysider Tony Papas before exporting the concept of quality roasting and good coffee to the UK.

The Crucials

The Conclusion

Though I have been back many times since (always ordering the same thing in the express rejection of Clinton’s 1992 election campaign slogan - It’s Time to Change), it is only fitting that this week’s Coffee Cult resulted in not one, but two, visits to Allpress in one weekend. Both times with Aussie out-of-towners I was eager not to let approach London’s coffee scene with the same misguided folly I was first afflicted with. Two days, four ‘breakfast plates’, eight coffees and three satisfied customers later – Coffee Cult declares mission accomplished. Though there may well be other things on the menu (I couldn’t

It was love at first sip all those months ago, and the honeymoon period shows no sign of abating. One of the vanguard of Antipodean coffee shops in London. Allpress Espresso, 58 Redchurch St Shoreditch, London E2 7DP

Char grilled sirloin of Aberdeen Angus ‘on the bone’ with a roasted marrow bone sauce creating a criss cross pattern on the beef. After 5 minutes the steak should be caramelized to a golden brown colour. • Turn the steak and cook for a further 2 minutes. • Remove the steak and rest in a warm area. The steak at this stage should be medium-rare. Cook a further 4 minutes for medium-well. • Place the young garlic in a frying pan with the butter, thyme and seasoning. On a medium heat, sauté the garlic until the outer skin becomes golden and tender when pieced with a small knife. This should take around 5 minutes. • In a small frying pan on a medium heat add 50ml of cooking oil. When the oil is warm, it will move easily around the pan, place the bone in the marrow and sauté for 3minutes. • Add the shallots, sauté for 1 minute. • Add the beef glaze and reduce on a medium heat to form a thick sauce like

consistency. This should take around 2 minutes. • Add the chopped fresh tarragon and adjust the seasoning. • Place the steak on a warm plate, spoon over the rich sauce and garnish with the warm tender young garlic.

Entertainment | 9

Photo of the Week: Cody Simpson: From the

Worcester Lake Gold Coast to popstar pin-up Words and image by Henry Hawthorne, an Aussie reader living in Oxford.

“The recent dustings of snow in Oxford meant either grumbling about the cold (for the locals) or exciting photo snaps to send back home (for the Australians). This one is lakeside at Worcester College, where a swan and cygnet attempted, over an agonising half an hour, to break through the ice with their feet. “On reflection, I suspect they thought my camera was a delicious, black, shiny packet of breadcrumbs. For once, the ducks had the advantage, and

were able to walk along the thin surface of the lake without it breaking. The greenkeeper tells me that swans mate for life (which makes for a nice contrast with the undergrads at college) and these two have become repeat customers at Worcester in winter.”

Do you have a picture you want to share? Email with your photos of life in London, the UK, Australia or from your travels, and we could feature it as Photo of the Week.

n Australia’s answer to Justin Bieber, 16-yr-old Cody Simpson, is about to kick off his first UK/European tour. He talks to PAUL BLEAKLY about how he turned a YouTube clip into an international whirlwind success.

Australian music phenomenon Cody Simpson has kept busy over the past three years. He has moved to the United States of America, signed to a major international record label, released two albums and had an almost non-stop touring schedule. He has collaborated with some of the biggest names in the music industry and posters bearing his image adorn the bedroom wall of teenage girls across the world. He has had an amazing career so far, made even more impressive by the fact that Simpson has only just turned 16. Cody Simpson burst onto the entertainment scene in 2010 after being discovered by Grammy-award winning producer Shawn Campbell and being signed to Atlantic Records. Campbell noticed the Gold Coast local, then 12-years-old, after Simpson posted videos of himself performing on YouTube. Simpson told Australian Times: “Putting my music on YouTube was something that I was just doing for fun, and I never expected that it would lead to me going to America. I met with Atlantic Records, my current record label, on my 13th birthday actually and since then it has all been a whirlwind.” His first single iYiYi, featuring perennial collaborator Flo Rida, was released in mid-2010 and launched Simpson’s career as an international pop-star. It was this breakthrough success that posed one of the most significant dilemmas of Simpson’s life: the moment that his record label told him that he would have to move to the USA in order to continue his career. Simpson said: “It was a difficult decision because I have a younger brother and sister and I didn’t want to drag them across the world for my career. I have always had a really good relationship with my family though, and they made it 100% clear that they supported me and thought that it was something that we should do.

“I have worked hard for my career and I am working so many more hours than most people my age, so it was pretty overwhelming when it first happened. Girls started showing up where I was staying… I’m not complaining, but it was definitely overwhelming.” After achieving gold certification with his first single in Australia, Simpson’s star has continued to rise. His album Coast to Coast reached 12th on the Billboard music chart in 2011, while his current album Paradise continuing to chart well around the world. Simpson has been touring with music megastar Justin Bieber in preparation for his first European tour. Simpson said that he was looking forward to kicking off his European tour in Dublin on 17 February, and that it was “surreal” that he was only sixteen and had the opportunity to travel the world performing his music at an age where most people were only just becoming eligible for their driving licence. Simpson said: “I have never been to Europe and so it will be good to get over there. My tour goes through all of Europe pretty much, and so I

In the Round first began life as Music in the Round back in 2009 - a live music event for upcoming singer/songwriters, held at The Forge Music Venue in Camden, London. It was the brainchild of Mark Aaron James, a musician from America who was inspired by the nightly live music shows at Bluebird Café in downtown Nashville. All the artists of the evening would sit together in the centre of the room and take it in turns to play their songs and share the stories behind them, accompanying each other instrumentally and vocally to recreate the vibe of campfires at folk festivals. Happening upon a newly opened Forge one afternoon in Camden, Mark fell in love with the space and felt the layout was perfect for a songwriters’ circle. After convincing the owners (and musicians), Adam and Charlotte Caird to give the concept a shot, Mark found an audience receptive to the intimate conversational structure of the event – with artists performing their songs and explaining the story behind them. One of the first artists to play Mark’s event was Australian singer/songwriter and guitar virtuoso Johnson Jay. Mark and JJ had first met when they played

a gig together in Guildford. With an instant appreciation for each other’s work, they started writing together. Mark says JJ “has an good ear for harmony and can play a mean guitar solo on the fly” and saw that he would be a perfect fit for the circle. JJ played Music in the Round and loved it so much, he frequented the night as both an artist in the circle and as an audience member many times. He says “it was obvious that this was very different to anything else I’d ever played. The intimacy, the spontaneity… you feel like you’re really sharing something special with each other and with the audience”. When Mark had to return to the States after the UK cancelled their Artist Visa Programme, JJ took over as host of Music in the Round, but the economic crisis meant dwindling audience numbers and eventually the Forge had to cut the show. Sixteen months on Music in the Round is set to return to the Forge as the streamlined In the Round on Monday 4 March, with future shows to be held monthly. This time it will be free entry to all, although in true Nashville style audience

IeNts W k ic T To win tickets to a Cody Simpson UK show go to

am looking forward to experiencing different cultures and seeing what it is like.” Earlier this year Simpson launched his own webseries titled The Paradise Series on his official website, which gives fans a look “behind the curtains” as the pop-star goes on tour and continues to record his third album, which he will return to the US to work on at the end of his European tour. Simpson will begin the UK leg of his next tour on 19 February at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall. He will perform fourteen shows throughout the United Kingdom in cities including London, Nottingham, Manchester, Liverpool and Birmingham. Visit for a full list of Simpson’s concerts and information about how to purchase tickets.

Musical chairs: In the Round

members will be asked if they would like to make a donation at the end of the evening, with the proceeds being split between the acts. The launch night sees the return of host Johnson Jay along with Julia Johnson, as well as the fantastic Vin Goodwin and the wonderful Hannah White. Johnson Jay says the concept “is more about the night than the individual artists. Everyone is on the same side, helping each other and enhancing each other’s performances. It isn’t a format that works well for anyone with a prominent ego as it requires a lot of openness and vulnerability in a way. It takes a certain kind of artist and personality to be able to accompany another on songs they may not have heard before. This does, however, lead to truly unique, never to be seen again performances”. With the room holding 50 people, the night will truly be an intimate and engaging performance. Seats can be reserved by emailing and will be on a first come, first served basis.

10 | Travel

12 - 18 February 2013

e c n a m o r e d i s y r t n u o c A In France

By Clare Boyd-Macrae

It’s such a luxury, when you’re travelling, to have an entire week in one place. When the week is in the south of France, it’s not just a luxury, it’s a foretaste of heaven. Although not far from some busy little towns, with such useful amenities as banks, petrol stations and supermarkets, our village of La Teuliere is so tiny it’s not on any maps that we can find.

There is a letter box, but the nearest store, which is minute and sells a weird collection of stamps, local wine and second hand clothes, is nearly four kms down the mountain.  There are half a dozen houses in this hamlet and sunshine filters from a sky of purest blue through the almost-autumnal leaves of the birch and chestnut trees in the woods that surround it. It’s pinch yourself territory. We can’t believe we are here: in the south of France, in a converted 19th century barn that epitomizes tasteful rustic charm, smack down in the middle of territory which includes several of what are officially the loveliest French villages in existence. Living here, maybe you could become blasé about such places. To us, from a land where the culture goes back tens of thousands of years but the oldest buildings are 200 years old, we are like kids in a lolly shop. We run out of superlatives on the first morning. I wish I could think of something more original to say than ‘wow!’ But that’s what keeps popping out of my mouth; I am rendered barely articulate by the beauty, both natural and made by humans, by which we are surrounded. We divvie up our days. One day we go sight-seeing by car; the next we explore on foot. This works well for us; it doesn’t take long to get to saturation point when you drive and stop at more than two villages, no matter how quaint. We need the soothing balance of long walks through the forests, where we stumble upon ruins; of mills, of cottages and sheds, of ancients stone walls softened by a complete covering of thick, damp moss. Everywhere is hilly, and I feel my thighs and lungs get stronger by the day as I power up and down the steep slopes. To describe the villages as charming is the understatement of our trip thus far. Apart from the odd satellite dish, and the disconcerting presence of modern cars,

they look exactly as they have done for a couple of hundred years. Most of these hamlets are medieval. Each has a tiny church, some of which date from the 12th and 13th centuries, surrounded by the graves of the faithful. They are built of the local stone and are beautifully maintained. The houses front straight onto the narrow streets, and window boxes burst with bright geraniums. There are wooden balconies and windows with shutters. It is hard not to feel like a voyeur - we are voyeurs, we are tourists after all - it is also hard not to feel as though we have landed in a fairy tale or a picture postcard or Narnia, whisked back in time and plonked down in a world of yesteryear. But although I love driving to the villages (particularly eating crepes with a bowl of cider in the village square), it is our three days out of the car that I love the best. Those easy, if sometimes very steep trails through the forest - leaves just becoming golden, bracken just starting to turn to copper - I never want them to end. Most days the sun shone, but on my favourite afternoon it rained gently and persistently, giving us the enchantment of walking through the gently dripping woods, surrounded by fresh smells, in the profoundest hush. The memories I will treasure most of our week in the south of France will not be of the fabulous, four course lunches for 12 euros (about $15) or even the picture postcard perfect villages. It is the rambles deep in the birch forests that I will return to when I want a deep sense of happiness and calm. Clare Boyd-Macrae stayed in the village of La Teuliere, near the town of Gagnacsur-Cere in the district of Lot. This area is south of the Dordogne in southern France. Clare Boyd-Macrae’s travel writing can be found at or you can follow her on twitter at @clareboydmacrae.

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Travel | 11

Need more romance? Try these romantic getaways Ha Long Bay, Vietnam

Ischia, Campania, Italy

Roussilon, Provence, France

Long overshadowed by pristine and picturesque Charleston, Savannah has recently become an increasingly popular romantic weekend destination due to the city’s well-preserved architecture, creative culinary scene, and affordability. Savannah gives visitors the opportunity to truly embrace the flâneur lifestyle. With 21 public squares and no laws against open containers, visitors can stroll the streets with a to-go cocktail of their choosing. If you or your partner enjoy architecture and house tours, Savannah is a goldmine of amazing properties – simply walk along the Victorian district, filled with historic homes, flourishing gardens, and complex iron work. Boutiques and home furnishing stores line Broughton Street, and one store not to miss is The Paris Market.

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This year, the spotlight in the South of France has been on Marseille, the country’s second largest city and a designated European Capital of Culture for 2013. While many trips within Provence start in Marseille, the destination for your romantic weekend should be somewhere less crowded and with a slower pace. If you and your significant other enjoy hiking and being outdoors you should schedule a stopover in Roussillon while touring the Cote d’Azur. Roussillon, situated 50 km (31 miles) from Avignon on the road to Apt, is a small village most notable for its location in the midst of one of the world’s largest ochre deposits. This is reflected in both the hills surrounding the village as well as the buildings themselves with the clay ranging from a yellow to dark rust to almost violet. Visitors can take two different walks, one 30 minutes long and another 60 minutes long, to explore the Ochre Trail and learn more about the geology and landscape at the site. It should be noted that the trail is closed annually from January 1 to February 16. Destinations were suggested by members of Use’s forums to have your travel questions answered quickly by a real expert traveler!

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Few coastlines have the views and sunsets of the Amalfi in Italy, but with those views come high prices and large crowds. Celebrities have flocked to the nearby island of Capri, but with their visits and vacations, so have followed the high prices and big groups. Avoid the large crowds and high prices by visiting Ischia, the largest of the three islands off of Naples, but significantly less “sceney” and crowded than Capri. Accessible by ferry from Naples and Pozzuoli, this island is of volcanic origin and therefore known for its thermal hot springs and wellness activities. In addition to heated pools and spas, one must-see is a walk on the Ponte Aragonese, the foot bridge that connects the island to the Castello Aragonese.


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If you think Prague and Vienna are too cliché, how about visiting the spa city of Karlovy Vary? Located at the confluence of the rivers Teplá and Ohe, Karlovy Vary is located about 130 km (81 miles) west of Prague. While the town is famous for its spa culture and hot springs, it also contains beautiful belle époque and art nouveau building facades. And these spas are not cost-prohibitive – many of the city’s famous thermal springs are located in open colonnades, which are free to the public and where visitors can “drink cure” from special cups available for purchase throughout the town. Some of the more notable colonnades are the Park Colonnade and the Mill Colonnade, as well as the Thermal Spring Colonnade. Stroll the streets, sip the cure, and enjoy your weekend away from the busy city. 

 For the unexpected romantic gesture, try a cruise on Ha Long Bay in Vietnam. Start your trip with a day in Hanoi, Vietnam’s capital and second largest city, before embarking on a two day, one night tour of Ha Long Bay. Rather than a large cruise liner with crowds of people, splurge on a “luxury junk” (which there is no shortage of on the bay) and enjoy one of the most beautiful scenes in Southeast Asia with your significant other. The bay, which includes more than 1,600 islands and islets, is comprised primarily of limestone pillars. One island, TiTop Island, can be explored on foot and affords those who make the climb to its summit an amazing view of the bay. Many visitors choose to explore the bay and the natural caves by kayak. The site is a rare combination of a truly rare geological occurrence (the bay and its islands are a UNESCO Heritage Site) with unique beauty that is protected from human encroachment by the very bay that surrounds it.

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12 | Travel

12 - 18 February 2013

n For those who like a tipple, some of the world’s best wine is found in the countryside of France. LORRAINE WADDELL gives us her guide to some of the more well-known areas such as Bourdeaux and Burgundy, to help ensure a romantic wine tour with a fine, full-bodied fling.

What could be better than relaxing in the peace and quiet of the French countryside, watching the sun go down with a glass of local wine in your hand? For wine lovers, a trip to France is about discovering the local vineyards to try the wines right at the source. If you can tell your Beaujolais from your Burgundy, the destination of your adventure in France will depend just as much on your taste in wine as your appetite for the local attractions. For the perfect combination, here is a guide to the sights and wines of some of France’s premier wine producing regions, including Burgundy, the Liore Valley and Bourdeaux regions.


What to see The towns of Chablis and Beune are beautiful and charming in their own right and great places to sample the local produce (red wine lovers should head to Beune, whilst fans of white wine should concentrate on Chablis). And don’t miss the Abbaye de Fontenay, a beautifully restored 12th century monastery near Dijon, a good place to regain a sense of spirituality if overindulging! What to drink Burgundy is the producer of some of France’s most popular wines, with the main grapes of the region being Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The most popular regional wine is Beaujolais, a light bodied red wine, closely followed by the extremely dry and flinty Chablis Chardonnay.

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What to see The famous chateaux of the region will be an undoubted highlight for anyone who goes camping in France’s Loire Valley. These medieval stately homes are dotted liberally throughout the valley, often surrounded by stunning countryside

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The Loire River itself is an undoubted attraction in its own right and is a good place for cycling, walking – or wine drinking! What to drink White wine is the dominant product of the Loire Valley, with Sauvignon Blanc and Chenin being the main types of grape. Try the dry and delicious Pouilly Fume, or the more fruity Vouvray. If you must have red, the valley does produce the very drinkable Bourgueil and Chinon.


What to see Bourdeaux is the unmissable destination for wine lovers who are camping in France. The 18th century city itself is a great place to visit, surrounded by chateaux, vineyards, and great countryside, and if you’ve a taste for more than wine, head north to Cognac to try the famous brandy. The beautiful Royan coast is also located close to Bordeaux and could be an excellent place to base yourself if you choose to camp here. What to drink Bourdeaux is widely regarded as the premier wine region in France, and one of the most important wine regions in the world, with one third of the top class wines in France being produced here. The vast majority is red, and you’ll truly be spoilt for choice here, with some of the names to look out for including Medoc, Margaux and Saint Emilion. Lorraine Waddell is the brand and advertising manager of Canvas Holidays and contributes articles to

Jobs & Money | 13

Healthy, Noble and Wise an astute aussie in london


Dollar Review

Aussie skittish after RBA interest rate hint By Jesse Crooks THE Australian Dollar began a rather rough week opening on 4 February at 1.506 against the British Pound, and extending a decline to 1.531 by Friday. Sentiment was positive ahead of the expected Reserve Bank of Australia decision to keep interest rates unchanged. The Aussie currency hit a high for the week of 1.503 to the Pound just before the release of trade data, which was expected to show a decrease in the trade deficit in line with the increase in the pace of growth of China’s service industry. The unsurprising decision by the RBA came with another surprise of its own, though. The bank’s governor Glenn Stevens announced that, “The inflation outlook, as assessed at present, would afford scope to ease policy further, should that be necessary to support demand. “Looking ahead, with the labor market softening somewhat and

unemployment edging higher, conditions are working to contain pressure on labor costs.” Essentially, this hint at an interest rate cut in the near future has scared some investors off, with talk emerging that the Australian Dollar is overvalued. The release of further data showing a rise in unemployment caused the Aussie to hit a 12-week low against the US Dollar. The European Central Bank’s president, Mario Draghi, stated that the Euro’s strength may hamper the region’s economic recovery. This negative sentiment failed to add any strength to emerging currencies. For the time being, the Aussie is likely to remain skittish around announcements from the RBA.

You are what you eat and Polly Noble, certified Holistic Health and Raw Food Coach, is well placed to know. Last week Ruby UK, a network for professional women, kicked off its first “Ginger event for the year with the Zinger” theme, “New Year, New Take a chunk of You”. Noble, the keynote ginger, half a peeled speaker, shared her lemon and ½ an inspiring story of cancer apple. Juice these survival and her recipes and drink. for healthy living. It’s true. Most of us take our bodies and health for granted. Yet in order to run our businesses and GBP/AUD: 1.529 our lives, we need to stay in good working order. We tend to take better EUR/AUD: 1.303 Image by Kris Talikowski care of our cars, our computers and USD/AUD: 1.025 our pets. The most important tool, Sepi Roshan is Business Editor of our body, seems to get the last look NZD/AUD: 1.234 Australian Times, and Director of in. Astute Coaching & Development, 09:30 GMT, 11 February 2013 Noble, who now runs a successful helping Professionals become coaching business, admits to having fearless presenters and leaders. been a real party-goer. “Before my Find out more at www. diagnosis, I was a regular on the party scene working as Personal Assistant to the Vice President of Note: The above exchange rates are based on “interbank” rates. If you want to Sony Playstation, taking my body and transfer money to or from Australia then please register/login on our website, or call Get More Jobs health for granted”. But a diagnosis us on 0808 141 2335 for a live dealing rate. Make use of a Rate Notifier to send you & Money of cancer changed her view of her alert when the Australian exchange rate reaches levels you are looking for. behaviour. Noble survived cancer not once, but twice. After being diagnosed with cervical cancer at the young age of 24, Noble decided to make it her mission to inspire others to live a healthier and happier life. She has since written several books and confesses to being a juice junkie. Noble says she has created a life she GAIN A PROFESSIONAL EDGE FOR loves, and encourages and supports others to do the same. YOU AND YOUR BUSINESS So how can you use food to nurture rather than abuse your body? Noble advocates eating an anti-inflammatory Sable offers an impressive portfolio of professional diet by reducing the amount of highly services. We have over 25 years of experience acidic foods such as meat, dairy and Due to planned expansion in 2013, we are looking advising individuals, contractors and small businesses processed foods. Instead, consume for a talented and energetic person to join our alkaline foods such as leafy greens, who have international interests and connections. juices, nuts, smoothies and sea advertising sales team. vegetables. “These foods can increase your energy levels, improve your The role involves the management and development of a mental clarity and creativity, help you sleep better and lose weight if you portfolio of new and existing clients across our high profile Accounting need to”. expat newspapers and websites. If you are convinced your busy Tax lifestyle leaves no time to eat The successful applicant will bring to the position: properly, Noble suggests increasing Wealth the amount of raw “living” food • Proven experience and success in media sales you consume with each cooked OFFSHORE • Excellent telephone, presentation and written meal. The enzymes in the raw food communication skills help your body digest the cooked Foreign Exchange food. Noble says, “The conserved • Ability to identify and build new revenue streams Law energy means you are not slumped • Ability to work under pressure and adhere to strict deadlines at your desk at 3pm. By eating and • The drive to achieve beyond set targets Immigration living consciously, and creating an awareness around what you are fuelling yourself with, you can This is a fantastic opportunity for a self-motivated individual who Sable Group upgrade your health and ultimately has proven themselves in advertising sales and is now looking for upgrade your life”. a role with greater autonomy and higher rewards for success. For Aussies not used to English Castlewood House winters, Noble recommends her 77/91 New Oxford Street flu-busting, immune-boosting This full-time position is based in the Blue Sky Publications London WC1A 1DG “Ginger Zinger” juice. “Juicing is London office. t: +44 (0) 845 094 3990 the fastest way to flood your body with immune-boosting vitamins and Salary negotiable based on experience as part of an extremely minerals” she says. “The Zinger is far better than coffee, for generous OTE package. waking you up in the morning”. Surviving cancer twice and running Apply by sending your CV with a covering letter to: your own business is no small feat. Sable is a group of professional service companies. Noble’s own story is her testament to Sable Accounting Limited is a limited company registered in England and Wales with registered number 03517738. how a healthy diet is linked to a long Sable Private Wealth Management Limited is registered in England & Wales, number 04305265, Authorised and and healthy life. regulated by the Financial Services Authority.

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14 | Sport

12 - 18 February 2013

Bombers identified in drugs investigation

ESSENDON star recruit Brendon Goddard says Bombers players are feeling anxious as they await the outcome of what’s expected to be a lengthy investigation into possible performance-enhancing drug use at the AFL club. The ex-St Kilda star, whose status as a new recruit means he’s one of the few Bombers not under scrutiny, said he was trying to help his new teammates through the ordeal as best he could. “Understandably they’ve been a bit anxious,” Goddard said. “It’s probably hard for me to get my head around it because I obviously wasn’t there last year and I’m not directly involved or affected. “What we’ve talked about as a group is what we can do as a team and as players.

“All that is, is from Monday to Friday our preparation, then obviously once the season comes around ... control the controllables.” The Bombers have been identified by an Australian Crime Commission (ACC) investigation which revealed it was possible that players at the club took World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) prohibited substances without their knowledge. Asked whether players felt let down, Goddard said he was limited in what he could say. “At this point they’re all allegations so there’s no need to jump to conclusions or anything like that,” he said. Goddard, a member of the Bombers’ leadership group whose former club St Kilda endured several scandals during his time there, said his experience was

helping him and other Bombers cope. “There’s no doubt I’ve offered my opinion on certain things and experience to the younger guys and the whole playing group,” he said. “But as a whole team we’ve really helped each other in certain situations, particularly in the last week, we’ve talked about what we need to do and as I said, control what we can control.” He urged Bombers fans to stick with the club. “As I said at this point in time it’s all allegations and at no point can you jump to conclusions,” Goddard said. “As supporters it’s important to stick by the club because the boys are doing everything they can to prepare for another season.” The Bombers open the pre-season competition on Friday night, with a

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triple-header against Collingwood and the Western Bulldogs at Etihad Stadium. Bombers officials met with parents of the club’s players on Monday night to brief them on the ASADA investigation. Club chairman David Evans and coach James Hird addressed the group, as did the AFL players association’s general manager of player relations Ian Prendergast. Attendees included Bombers great Tim Watson, father of reigning Brownlow Medallist and current Essendon skipper Jobe. Watson said afterwards that parents left the meeting satisfied the club was acting in their sons’ best interests, according to the ABC website. By Sam Lienert in Melbourne

BRAVE FACES: (L to R) Brendon Goddard Jackson Macrae and Clinton Young at Etihad Stadium on Monday to launch the start of the NAB Cup. (AAP Image/David Crosling)

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Find love in London with Try Tag Rugby this Valentine’s Day

By Phillip Browne WITH Valentine’s Day coming up this week, many of you may have plans to wine and dine your significant other. However if you’re single and need an alternative this Thursday night, the Try Tag Rugby Valentine’s Day Challenge may be for you. On Thursday 14 February, 10 single male and 10 single female players will take to the pitch at the City of London Academy in Bermondsey. The fixture will be an extremely social game of Tag Rugby for the singles, with an after match function to test where Cupid’s Bow might fly. Held at St James Tavern single will enjoy a glass of champagne on arrival, as well as the chance to win over someone’s heart. With only limited spaces available, make sure to register ASAO if you wish to play in the inaugural Valentine’s Day Challenge match. The cost is £11 per player. In other news, the UK’s leading Tag Rugby organisation, Try Tag Rugby, is now hiring. Try Tag Rugby is a young vibrant company which has experienced tremendous growth of 78% in participation numbers in 2012, with a peak of 142 teams participating in competitions throughout summer. In 2013, team numbers are anticipated to peak at 200 teams across London and Reading.

Try Tag Rugby are looking to hire two competition supervisors, with long term career prospects with the company available. One role will focus on administration, with the other role suited to a business graduate. Applications close on Friday 15 February. If you would like to read the full job description, go to The upcoming spring season commences on 3 March at 11 venues across the capital, with an anticipated record spring season of over 100 teams expected to take part. With a large number of teams set to return from their winter breaks, places at some venues will be extremely tight and will run at full capacity. Spring competition registrations are now open with leagues taking place at the following venues: Balham, Barnes, Bermondsey, Borough, Finsbury Park, Highbury, Rotherhithe, Shoreditch Park, Southfields, Tooting Bec and White City. New team and individual registrations are welcome and it is a great chance to develop a network of friends if you are new to London. If you would like to register for a spring league or for the Valentine’s Day Challenge, go to www. or email info@ for more details.

Sport | 15

“Preparation has been compromised”: Bailey NRL all “tarred with the same brush,” says Bellamy ...continued from p16

international may be depleted further after Queensland batsman Joe Burns was called in on Monday as cover for Adam Voges (hamstring). As a result, the finale for Australia’s international summer of cricket resembles a fizzer. “It’s frustrating. No doubt Cricket Australia have prioritised the Test series - I don’t blame them for that,” Bailey said. “But we’ve got seven or eight games until the T20 World Cup (in Bangladesh in 2014). “It (preparation) does feel a little compromised.” And Bailey said if rumours of a change to the 2014 World Cup format were true, world No.7 Australia needed the best preparation available to get out of the “danger zone”. The number of teams have been expanded from 12 to 16 at the

2014 T20 World Cup but Bailey appeared anxious over how many automatically qualified. “I have heard they are going to change the format...there will be a certain amount who automatically qualify,” he said. “I have heard six and I have heard eight, and we are in that danger zone. “So every game as a group is terms of trying to maintain some structure and continuity.” Ticket prices for Wednesday’s T20 international ranged from $45 to $105 but Bailey baulked when asked if fans would be short changed. “It is frustrating. I am sure they (fans) would like to see the best 11 available,” he said. “I don’t think they will be short changed...but will the best players be there? Not necessarily.” Burns is in line to make his international debut along with the likes of WA quick Nathan Coulter-

Nile and NSW batsman Ben Rohrer on Wednesday after being placed on standby for Voges. Voges twinged a hamstring during his match-winning 112 not out in Australia’s 17-run ODI win over the Windies on Sunday night, completing a five-game sweep. Bailey - who missed the ODI finale at the MCG - was confident he would overcome his own hamstring complaint. Meanwhile, quick Ben Cutting denied he had been given a “cheap cap” before running out on home ground the Gabba in national colours for the first time. “I have worked as hard as the other boys,” he said. “It’s part and parcel of being a fast bowler. It gives you opportunities but it can also take them away with injury and what not.” By Laine Clark

Brumbies coach appeals to ACT supporters to return ...continued from p16 a selection battle with incumbent wingers Joe Tomane and Henry Speight, both stars of their 2012 campaign, but has gained the starting nod for round one. White admitted he announced the former Wallaby’s return from a threeyear retirement, where he battled depression and weight gain, to hype up the clash with the 2012 Australian conference winners. Despite being a major success-story last season, the Brumbies struggled to win back fans as they attracted an average crowd of 14,500 - well off the 23,000 average of 2004 when they won the last of their two titles. Rathbone, a South African Under-21 captain under White, was in his first full season of Super Rugby then and went on to play the first of his 26 Tests that year. Three tries in two pre-season trials was enough for White to usher him straight back onto the wing for his 50th Brumbies cap - denying sentiment had any part to play. “I think he’s done enough to select himself ... one thing I’m looking for is an old player coming back hopefully to old ways in Canberra where there’s 20,000 supporters,” the coach said. “In a lot of ways we’re really getting the hype up and hoping that we can challenge the supporters in Canberra and see if we can get back to those old days.

BACK IN THE SADDLE: Clyde Rathbone will make his Brumbies Super Rugby return this Saturday. (AAP Image/NZPA, Wayne Drought) “A lot of people say if you win they’ll come ... that’s easy to say. “Hopefully (Rathbone’s return) will be an instigator to getting back the crowds.” White, to name the rest of his team later this week, also sent out a Twitter post after his press conference saying Rathbone’s selection should attract more than 20,000 to the game. Both nervous and excited about his return, the 31-year-old admitted it was hard to fathom two months ago during pre-season training. “Personally it’s going to be a big occasion, but I think for us as a group leading into the rest of the year this is a massive game,” Rathbone said.

“It’s important that we start well and make a statement.” White was South African under-21 coach when Rathbone captained his former nation to the Junior World Cup in 2002, and the former Springboks mentor said the three-quarter had proved he remained a “winner”. “I’m hoping the influence he has both off the field and on the field will be there this year in terms of making our team winners,” he said. The Reds may well be without captain James Horwill who failed to train on Monday afternoon due to an ankle injury.

...continued from p16 the widespread use of banned substances, organised crime and match-fixing. AAP contacted all 16 clubs for comment on Monday night, with Canterbury, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Brisbane, Parramatta, Wests Tigers and South Sydney all claiming they had not been contacted by the NRL. The NRL said it was not legally permitted to name the clubs, or specify just how many clubs were involved. “The information that has been passed on to the clubs is simply that they have been referred to within the report,” NRL chief executive Dave Smith said. “The NRL is working with the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) who will establish a more detailed briefing with the clubs regarding its investigation. “The NRL does not have authority to name the clubs or confirm the number referred to in the report. “Regardless of the outcome of any investigation, we are already committed to establishing the

strongest integrity and compliance unit of any code and we are determined to see rugby league stronger for having addressed these issues.” Earlier Monday, Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy backed calls for clubs and fans to be given some clarity. “I think a lot of people have said in our game and in other codes that we’d like them to name names, team or individuals,” Bellamy said during a press conference to announce his re-signing with the Storm. “I don’t know the legal ramifications of that. That would be ideal if that could happen because we’re all tarred with the same brush at the moment.” The establishment of a helpline to provide information in relation to anti-doping doesn’t seem to have gone down too well with players, with Tigers superstar saying he would not be inclined to dob in a peer. “First of all that’s not in my nature and secondly I don’t know anyone that does it (take banned substances,” Marshall said. “If I did, I definitely wouldn’t be involved in any sort of way to put them (in trouble) at all.”


By Jim Morton

Henshaw forgoes surgery for bid at Olympics spot ...continued from p16 expected to be out of action for two months. Segal sustained the injury in qualifying at the Swiss World Cup event but went on to compete in the final where she finished third. In hindsight Segal, who has had ACL surgery on both knees, admitted it probably wasn’t the best move to continue competing. “I’m kind of kicking myself because it was a really stupid decision on my part,” she said. “It could have made it worse but I probably would have needed a scope (on the knee) anyway.” She will have surgery and rehabilitate back in Australia and hopes to see some ski time in the United States in April.

“It hasn’t been the best year for me because I was hoping for more and I was really looking forward to upping my game in competition,” she said. “... but it’s only a minor surgery and I think it will only put me six weeks out and that’s conservative.” Segal’s injury comes after fellow Australian ski slopestyle competitor Russ Henshaw hurt his knee at last month’s X Games. After reports he could be out of action for up to six months, Henshaw, another Games medal hopeful, said on his website he could be back on snow next month. It is understood he is forgoing allograft surgery for now in a bid to ensure he can compete at another World Cup event this season to lock in a qualifying spot for the 2014 Games. Slopestyle is one of a dozen new


he #Backt Anna Segal (AAP Image/Pierre Tostee) disciplines on the program at the Sochi Games and sees competitors perform a series of tricks off rails, jumps and boxes in a purpose-built terrain park.

v WAKEFIELD WILDCATS Sunday February 17th, kick-off 3:00pm at the Twickenham Stoop, TW2 7SX

By Glenn Cullen

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TRY TAG FANATIC? Try Tag Rugby is looking for competition supervisors P14


The quest is on to out the clubs involved in the Australian Crime Commission’s probe into the use of illicit drugs after the NRL on Monday notified the relevant parties.


By Steve Jancetic in Sydney NORTH QUEENSLAND and Penrith on Monday night became the first NRL teams to come forward as the witch hunt to find the clubs involved in the Australian Crime Commission’s probe into the use of illicit drugs began in earnest. The NRL put the heat back on

its sides after the ACC granted the league permission to notify the clubs referred to in the ACC’s Project Aperio report - with the Cowboys outing themselves late on Monday night, while Penrith reportedly confirmed they were one of the clubs in the spotlight. “We have been mentioned in the report but we have no information

on the context,” Cowboys chief executive Peter Jourdain said in a statement. “Like all NRL clubs mentioned in this report, we will co-operate fully with the NRL and ASADA. “Until we receive a briefing on Tuesday afternoon, we will not be making any further public comment.

“We strongly support this investigation.” Clubs were told they were in the report but were not given specific information as to the nature of the investigations, with the ACC report making links between

...continued on p15

Twenty20 team left depleted FRUSTRATED Australian Twenty20 captain George Bailey understands why he will lead a depleted side against the West Indies in Brisbane on Wednesday but fears it may compromise their World Cup countdown. Bailey would have been forgiven for feeling like the last man standing in the T20 side as the 17-strong Australian squad assembled in India for their fourTest tour. And his team for the one-off T20

...continued on p15

Brumbies fairytale return for Rathbone JAKE White has deliberately revealed early that Clyde Rathbone will make a fairytale Brumbies return on Saturday night to trigger a 20,000-plus crowd attendance at Canberra Stadium. Coach White on Monday challenged ACT sports fans to help the Brumbies return to their Super Rugby glory days by packing out their home ground against the Queensland Reds. Rathbone had been locked in ...continued on p15

Top Aussie Olympic ski hope injured


Stick with Bombers, pleads Goddard amid drugs haze | P14 PRE-SEASON GLOOM: AFL Players (L to R) Jackson Macrae from the Western Bulldogs, Clinton Young from Collingwood and Brendan Goddard from Essendon put on a brave face on Monday to launch the start of the NAB Cup. The 2013 pre-season opens under the cloud of the drugs in sport scandal. (AAP Image/David Crosling)

WORLD champion Australian freestyle skier Anna Segal has been ruled out of competition for the rest of the season after tearing ligaments in her knee during qualifying at her last World Cup event. Segal, who is in the Russian city of Sochi to view the 2014 Olympic Games host city, will not be able to defend her 2011 slopestyle world title in Norway next month. The 26-year-old, regarded as one of Australia’s brightest gold medal hopes at next year’s Games alongside Alex Pullin, Lydia Lassila and Torah Bright, is ...continued on p15

Australian Times weekly newspaper | 12 February 2013  

The weekly Australian Times newspaper: for, by and about Aussies in the UK

Australian Times weekly newspaper | 12 February 2013  

The weekly Australian Times newspaper: for, by and about Aussies in the UK