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PANPA 2014 NEWSPAPER OF THE YEAR RUNNER-UP

weekender the western

Printed on 100% recycled paper

FRI 9 JAN 2015 • Issue 1185

Wallace eyes return

PROUDLY INDEPENDENT

Business Advice, tips and profiles on the best local businesses p.22-23

Our plans for 2015 Penrith City Council outlines its agenda for a busy year ahead DALE DRINKWATER

Captain to be ready for round one p.40

Building Hope in Uganda p.20

Rocking into Penrith We catch up with The Amity Affliction p.24

@daledrinkwater

T

here are big plans on the way for Penrith this year to reshape the regional city, in a bid to keep up with growth in what Penrith Council deems “the heart of the new west”. Outlining its plans for 2015, Council said it would seek funding from the State Government on numerous projects this year to provide facilities and services they consider beyond Penrith’s own resources. Funding would go towards upgrading the city’s car parks to free up space for potential economic or cultural development sites under the guise of the Rebuilding NSW Plan. After years of pushing for progress, Council said this year will see developments in Penrith Lakes after the State Government’s Draft Vision for the area was released back in December. Council said it wants more areas opened up for recreation sooner and agrees that the area is western Sydney’s equal to the east’s waterfront Barangaroo. The city’s iconic Nepean River is set to be upgraded and is to include a playground, a water’s edge amphitheatre, cafes, public art, new paths and recreational facilities, with plans to start work on a pedestrian bridge across the river. Penrith Mayor, Ross Fowler, said construction of the pedestrian bridge should begin soon and is expected to take two years to complete. Mr Fowler is also keen to push Penrith’s claims for a new major sports stadium. Mayor Ross Fowler at the Nepean River this week. Photo: Melinda Jane

Story continues on » p. 8

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COMMUNITY

Penrith gets its skates on again

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Roller skating set for a revival as Penrith Skatel prepares for special reunion KATHERINE TWEED

past-time that has soared and dropped in popularity throughout the ages is ready for a comeback in the Penrith area, according to the owners and patrons of Penrith Skatel. Roller skating, hugely popular in the 1950s, 60s and again in the late 80s and 90s, took a dip in popularity in the noughties but now, the activity is beginning to become fashionable again. Bob and Sue Kersten have owned the only roller skating rinks in the area since the 80s. They originally owned three but now, have shrunk their empire to just one; Penrith Skatel, which has been theirs for 25 years. The couple is very passionate about preserving roller skating as a past-time in Penrith and offer endless support to local roller skating sports like Roller Derby, with the hopes of keeping it alive. Patricia McClean has been attending Penrith Skatel since 2012, when she began to train with the local Roller Derby team, now known as the Western Sydney Rollers. She told the Weekender that Skatel’s support and passion has been essential

in keeping the sport alive in the area. Ms McClean said Skatel’s passion is one that has spread to her and the rest of the team, who are keen to see the local business and sport thriving once again. “Roller skating is making a big comeback and whilst many new businesses are opening up, Skatel, in my opinion, is the heart and soul of skating in the area,” she said. “What I love about Skatel is the family fun atmosphere. It offers people a chance to relive their childhood and strap on some skates and have a great time.” To kick off the roller skating trend in Penrith again, Penrith Skatel and its current patrons are holding a special reunion; inviting back all their past customers on Saturday, February 27 at 7.30pm to catch up and check out the renovations that have been undertaken. “We have been in the roller skating business for quite a while and we have made great friends with our patrons. We have been operating since ‘89 and, although it feels like yesterday to me, there are a lot of people who we haven’t seen for a while, particularly some of our old regulars from over the years,” said Mr Kersten. “The reunion is a bit of nostalgia really and we hope that it might spark a bit of interest in the local area as well.”

local news

A

@ktweed_

Roller derby players call the Penrith Skatel home Ms McClean, who is helping to organise the event, said everyone is welcome . “We are organising the reunion to give people the opportunity to get back to

skating, or even try it for the first time. It is mainly our way to show support to Skatel for all they have done for us for many years,” she said.

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EDITOR'S DESK

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troy.dodds@westernweekender.com.au

Equal opportunity shouldn’t be about meeting targets and quotas

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A 30-something-year-old bloke talking about feminism should probably run for shelter, but I’m going to do it anyway. Two stories got steam flowing from my ears over the holiday period. The first was a story in The Sydney Morning Herald, which stated the number of women on government Boards had slipped below the 40 per cent target. The Herald said that a new report says men made up 75 per cent of new appointees within Tony Abbott’s own Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet this year. The annual Gender Balance on Australian Government Boards Report says overall female representation slipped from its peak of 41.7 per cent under Labor in 2013 to 39.7 under the Coalition in 2014. That all prompted the advocacy group Women on Boards to question the Government’s commitment to women and gender equality. And of course, the Twitterverse and the antiAbbott brigade went nuts. Here’s my problem: Do women really want positions on Boards and the like purely because of their sex? Surely it is offensive and indeed the very definition of discrimination and sexism to be appointing someone to meet a quota. When it comes to government Boards and the like, as a tax payer, I’d prefer to see the very best people appointed – regardless of their sex. Let’s just say a male and a female are vying for the same position on a Board. Let’s say the male is slightly more qualified and has a touch more experience. Should he be overlooked because his rival candidate just happens to be a woman and it’d help meet a quota or target? And here’s another thing we never seem to ask when these stories do the rounds: How many female applicants were there for Board positions

TROY DODDS @troydodds

Screaming down the joint for the sake of it is getting us nowhere

compared to male applicants? Could it be that the appointment statistics balance quite well with the application statistics? Maybe I’m looking at things too simplistically. Or maybe I’m looking at things as somebody who has grown up in a generation that has benefited from the real feminism movement, not the one that exists through mummy bloggers and Twitter. Which brings me to the star of ‘The Big Bang Theory’, Kaley Kuoco. During an interview, she was asked if she was a feminist. “Is it bad if I say no?” she said. “Things are different now, and I know a lot of the work that paved the way for women happened before I was around ... I was never that feminist girl demanding equality, but maybe that’s because I’ve never really faced inequality.” I applauded her comments at the time – here was a highly successful woman, very sure of herself, and not conforming to the expectation of screaming of sexism and unfairness. But of course, the critics brought her down. So much so, that she actually had to backtrack somewhat on her original comments, so as not to tread too fiercely on the toes of the precious feminist movement that has, in some cases, lost the plot. Shouldn’t we be celebrating the fact that Kaley Kuoco has had enormous success in a cut-throat industry and has never felt discriminated against because of her sex? No, we have to be offended. Offended at what, I’m not too sure, but offended nonetheless. I appreciate and understand the extraordinary feminist movement that paved the way for equal rights and opportunities, and I’m not stupid enough to believe the job is complete. But screaming down the joint for the sake of it is really getting us nowhere.

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CRIME

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Warning over fake cash Police say counterfeit money is a big issue in Penrith KATHERINE TWEED

@ktweed_

Shop 23, Tattersalls Centre, 510-534 High Street, Penrith 2750

Tanya Davies MP Member for Mulgoa a

local news

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ocal clubs and pubs have been collectively losing hundreds of dollars over the past month at the hands of criminals using counterfeit money. Local venues have been inundated with fake $20, $50 and $100 notes through December and into the new year, with management realising they have been conned too late. The issue of counterfeit money is one that local and state police are continually having to deal with but local police say that the situation in Penrith has reached a new level. It has prompted police to warn business owners in the local area to educate their staff so that they can identify counterfeit money before it hits the till. “It is important to know what it looks like and know what it feels like. If it doesn’t feel like real money, it isn’t,” said Penrith Local Area Command Crime Manager, Grant Healey. There have been five incidents where fake $50 notes have hit the tills at local clubs and pubs between Christmas and New Year. The serial numbers for counterfeit $50

A fake is hard to spot: The real $50 note is on top, the fake one is on the bottom notes that are circulating are DL06155176 and LM06855354. Counterfeit $20 notes circulating at the moment have the serial number BA10861877 and fake $100 notes have the

serial number; FA96403514. Local police say that the counterfeit money is normally passed late at night. Have you been conned? Email us at news@westernweekender.com.au.

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POLICE

No holidays for local police Police remain visible over the holiday period in an effort to keep roads safe

local news

KATHERINE TWEED

@ktweed_

D

ouble demerits, an increased police presence on the roads and roadside breath testing left, right and centre this Christmas-New Year period formed part of a state-wide plan by NSW Police to help get holidaymakers to their destinations safely. Last weekend marked the end of Operation Safe Arrival, a 17-day special operation that saw police use a number of different methods to encourage drivers to employ safe behaviours on roads during the busy period. Unfortunately, not everyone in the local area got the message. Penrith Highway Patrol issued over 300 speeding infringements and over 400 infringements for other offences. In conjunction with local police over 12,000 breath tests were conducted, with a number of infringements handed out as a result. About 5.30am on Friday, December 19, it is alleged that a 49-year-old male was detected travelling on the Great Western Highway at St Marys at a speed of 127km/h in a 60km/h area. The driver was issued with a court attendance notice to appear

at Penrith Local Court on January 29 and had his licence suspended. About 3.30pm on Friday, December 19, it is alleged that a motorcycle travelling on Lenore Drive, Erskine Park was seen to conduct a burnout before accelerating to a speed of between 130-150km/h in an 80km/h area. The rider was stopped and issued with court attendance notices for the offences and had his licence suspended. By trying to discourage people from speeding, drink driving and other dangerous behaviours, police hoped to ensure that every person using the roads would get to their destinations without incident. “This year’s operation began with the entire Highway Patrol fleet being deckedout in high visibility markings,” said Traffic and Highway Patrol Command Assistant Commissioner, John Hartley. “That visibility and the brightly marked cars will continue year-round. You can see us and we can see you, and that visual deterrent is more important to us than the offences we detect.” NSW Police carried out 830,670 random breath tests throughout the operation. During the special operation, 1273 people were charged with drink driving offences and 14,422 people were detected speeding.

Police were highly visible in the local area over the holidays

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Police have charged a man with the possession of prohibited drugs after they searched a car on Firetrail Road, Londonderry. Police were patrolling the area at 2am on Saturday, January 3, when they spotted a man in a vehicle allegedly acting suspiciously. They had reason to search the 34-yearold’s vehicle. There they allegedly located an amount of green vegetable matter, a powder and ‘tabs’. Police allege that the substances they located were cannabis, amphetamines and LSD. After being arrested and charged, the man will appear in Windsor Local Court on January 22 to face charges of three counts of ‘possess prohibited drug’.

Police are investigating an attempted armed robbery that occurred in St Marys last month and are calling on any witnesses to come forward. At about 10pm on Sunday, December 28, police were called to a business in Gallipoli Street, St Marys following reports of an alleged robbery. Police say they were informed that two males had allegedly entered the business and jumped over a counter whilst armed with a knife sharpener. They then approached a staff member and demanded cash before leaving the store empty handed. The offenders were described as wearing hooded jumpers and gloves at the time of the offence. No one was injured during the incident. Any witnesses who may have information in regard to this incident are urged to contact Crimestoppers on 1800 333-000.

Jamisontown: Alleged robber ate food, used phone charger

St Clair: Man stabbed during neighbourhood dispute

A man is to appear before court later this month after he allegedly broke into a local home and was found using the utilities there. Police arrived at a home on Drake Street, Jamisontown on Friday, January 2, in relation to an alleged break and enter. There they arrested a 22-year-old Plumpton man. Police allege that he broke into a house and ransacked it as well as ate some food, bathed and used the victim’s phone charger. Police are investigating a number of other suspected related break and enters. The man will appear before Parramatta Local Court on January 22.

Police are making enquiries after a man was stabbed in the abdomen during an alleged dispute with a neighbour on Monday. Officers from Penrith Local Area Command were called to a home on Burley Griffin Close, St Clair, shortly after 10pm on Monday, January 5. There they found a man suffering a stab wound to the abdomen. He was taken by ambulance to Westmead Hospital in a stable condition. As part of investigations, police attended neighbouring premises in the street, where they spoke to a man who is assisting with inquiries. Investigations are continuing.

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Busy year ahead Story continued from » p. 1 The footbridge across the Nepean River will be among the year’s biggest projects. “It’s a footbridge but it will take cyclists and it’s also being constructed wide enough to take an ambulance if something happened on the current bridge in the case of emergency,” Cr Fowler said. Road and rail infrastructure upgrades will include prioritising existing hot spots of The Northern Road and the M4 Interchange, ahead of Sydney’s second airport developments and focus on express train services between the Blue Mountains and Parramatta. Council has called on the State to assist in job creation in the Broader Western Sydney Employment Area by investing in roads and utilities to encourage more developers into the area sooner. Council has also identified a significant shortfall in government funding for culture and arts, and aim to focus on the growth and nurturing of creativity in the area.

Mamre Rd works Night roadworks on Mamre Road will begin on Monday, January 19 extending almost two months until Friday, March 13. The works will remove the existing concrete medians to extend the northbound and southbound right-turn lanes from Mamre Road onto the M4 Motorway on-ramps. State Member for Mulgoa, Tanya Davies said the NSW Government fully funded the $525,000 project as part of the $265 million Pinch Point Program. “[The program] aims to reduce delays and manage congestion on Sydney’s main roads, as well as improve road safety for all road users,” she said. Lane closures will be in place, and to ensure safety for all, road users are asked to follow the direction of traffic controllers, adhere to reduced speed limits and follow traffic signs. There will be some noise and temporary changes to street parking during the work, with the possibility of equipment resting in these car parks.

Friday 9 January 2015 the western weekender

Road safety State Penrith MP Stuart Ayres is encouraging community groups to submit an application as part of the NSW Government’s new $1.6 million grants initiative to help boost road safety in Penrith communities. “We all have a role to play when it comes to road safety and that’s why the NSW Government is providing $1.6 million in grants to help deliver grass roots road safety initiatives,” he said. “Penrith communities may have specific road safety issues that could be best addressed first hand by the community, which is in addition to the state-wide campaigns the NSW Government delivers. “[For example], if a school in Emu Plains wants to run a campaign about the impacts of drink and drug driving, we want to hear about it.” See www.roadsafety.transport.nsw. gov.au for details.

DESIGNATED & INTEGRATED DEVELOPMENT PROPOSAL Council has received an application from Cityscape Planning & Projects seeking consent for alterations and additions to an approved waste management facility including the processing of mercury waste (Designated Development) on 18 December 2014.

NSW Department of Planning sInformation Centre 23–33 Bridge Street, Sydney (Monday–Friday: Open business hours only. Public holidays excluded)

s DA14/1596 Lot 1552 DP 773154, (No. 22–24) Christie Street, St Marys Proposed alterations and additions to an approved waste management facility including the processing of mercury waste (Designated Development)

sSydney Region West Office Parramatta Office 10 Valentine Avenue, Parramatta (Monday–Friday: Open business hours only. Public holidays excluded)

This development is Designated Development under Section 77A of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act. It is also Integrated Development under Section 91 of the Act. Approval is also being sought from NSW Office of Enviroment and Heritage in accordance with relevant legislation. This application can be viewed at the following locations: Penrith City Council sCivic Centre 601 High Street, Penrith (Monday–Friday: 8.30am–4pm. Public holidays excluded) sPenrith City Library 601 High Street, Penrith (Monday–Friday: 9am–8pm, Saturday: 9am–5pm and Sunday: 12 noon–5pm) sQueen Street Centre St Marys Branch Library 207–209 Queen Street, St Marys (Monday–Thursday: 9am–8pm, Friday: 9am–5.30pm, Saturday: 9am–5pm and Sunday: 10am–5pm

DEVELOPMENT APPLICATIONS The following Development Applications have been received by Council: s Insight Architecture DA14/1591 5 Lethbridge Street, Penrith Demolition of existing structures and construction of residential flat building containing 20 apartments and ground floor car parking Contact: Mathew Rawson on 4732 7522 Closing Date: 27 January 2015 s Pretech Pty Ltd DA14/1599 90–92 Irwin Street, Werrington Demolition of existing structures and construction of 12 x 3-bed attic style villas with associated lot consolidation, landscaping, car parking and drainage works Contact: Mahbub Alam on 4732 7693 Closing Date: 27 January 2015

Any person may, from 12 January 2015 to 11 February 2015, make a submission in writing to Penrith City Council in relation to the Development Application. Where a submission is made by way of an objection, the grounds of objection are to be specified in the written submission. In accordance with Section 23G of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, 1979, the development application will be referred to the Joint Regional Planning Panel (JRPP) for the Sydney Metro West Region for determination. Any person who makes a submission and who is dissatisfied with the determination of Penrith City Council to grant consent to the subject Development Application, may appeal to the Land and Environment Court in accordance with Section 98 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, 1979. Any queries regarding the proposal, please contact Donna Clarke on 4732 7705.

Approved Development Applications s JS Architects

DA14/0429

Lot 101 DP 747696, (No. 52–54) College Street, Cambridge Park Demolition of existing structures and construction of a seniors living development with 7 dwellings and associated car parking, landscaping and drainage works s Maryland Development Company Pty Ltd DA14/0935 Lot 3997 DP 1179646, (No. 3997) Greenwood Parkway, Jordan Springs Subdivision of Lot 3997 DP 1179646 in 5 stages creating a total of 244 residential lots, 2 open space lots and 4 lots for future integrated housing developments and associated road construction, drainage, earthworks and landscaping works s Maryland Development Company Pty Ltd

DA14/1073

Lot 2257 DP 1168992, Lot 2146 DP 1168991 (No. 6–12) Katandra Place and (No. 2146) Milpera Street, Jordan Springs

s JS Architects Pty Ltd DA14/1577 114–116 Station Street, Penrith Demolition of existing structures and construction of 7-storey residential flat building containing 25 apartments and 2 levels of basement car parking Contact: Pukar Pradhan on 4732 7726 Closing Date: 27 January 2015

Disclosure of Political Donations or Gifts

DEVELOPMENT CONSENT/S DETERMINED

Development Applications are displayed at the Penrith Civic Centre. By law, reportable political donations or gifts must be disclosed by anyone lodging a planning application to Council. Call 4732 7649 or visit www.penrithcity.nsw.gov.au

Pursuant to Section 101 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act, the schedule below lists applications recently determined by Penrith City Council.

Subdivision of Lot 2146 DP 1168991 and Lot 2257 DP 1168992 by Torrens title creating 49 residential lots, construction of 2 roads and associated earthworks, provision of stormwater infrastructure, landscaping and tree removal

Viewing of Development Applications

Details of these determinations are available for public inspection free-of-charge during Council’s normal business hours at the Civic Centre, 601 High Street, Penrith.

The above development determination/s may be inspected between 8.30am and 4pm Mondays to Fridays (except Public Holidays) at Council’s Civic Centre, 601 High Street, Penrith. Officers of Council’s Development Services Department will be able to assist with your enquiries.

penrithcity.nsw.gov.au

penrithishere.com.au WW15082


9

local news

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NEWS

GO TO: PENRITHCITY.NSW.GOV.AU/LIBRARY

CONTACT US ADMINISTRATION Penrith Office Civic Centre, 601 High Street. Opening Hours: 8.30am–4pm. Mon–Fri. St Marys Office Queen Street Centre, 207–209 Queen Street. Opening Hours: 8.30am–4pm. Mon–Fri. Switchboard Open: 8.30am–5pm. Mon–Fri. P: (02) 4732 7777 F: (02) 4732 7958 Write to: PO Box 60, Penrith NSW 2751. E: council@penrithcity.nsw.gov.au

SERVICES Waste Hotline: Freecall 1800 734 735 Illegal Dumping: Contact the EPA hotline on 131 555 and ask for the RID Squad (Regional Illegal Dumping Squad). Graffiti Hotline: Freecall 1800 022 182

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(ENTRIES CLOSE FEBRUARY 28, 2015)

COUNCIL BRIEFS s A spectacular live fireworks display will be the main drawcard of

PENRITH CITY COUNCIL ONLINE facebook.com/penrith.city.council

Penrith’s Australia Day Concert at the Lakes on Monday, 26 January 2015.

twitter.com/penrithcouncil

The event will feature over three hours of free entertainment, including Play School presenter Justine Clarke and her popular

instagram.com/penrithcitycouncil

songs. The Jitterbugs will also perform their high energy show for the kids.

youtube.com/penrithcitycouncil

Don’t miss Penrith’s free annual Australia Day party at the Sydney

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International Regatta Centre. s Penrith Council has welcomed the State Government’s launch of

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community consultation into the Draft Vision Plan for the Penrith Lakes Parkland. Council is eager to see the site transform into the Penrith Lakes Parkland. Regeneration works being carried out as quarrying ceases are already attracting wildlife to the lakes.

TENDER

MEETING DATES

along with planting of natural species providing a habitat for

Council Meetings

animals.

Project Management & Design Consultancy for Kingsway Sporting Complex and Blair Oval All Weather Athletics Facility

2 February 2015 – 7.30pm (Ordinary Meeting)

This will be one of the most significant developments in Penrith.

Reference 14/15-17

9 February 2015 – 7pm (Policy Review Committee)

A dedicated wildlife lake provides sanctuary to migratory birds

The Lakes are the jewel in the City’s crown. Council expects the development of the Penrith Lakes Parkland to be the benchmark for similar developments in the future.

penrithcity.nsw.gov.au penrithishere.com.au

Consultation with the community is an important step and is open until April 2015. For more information on the draft vision plan and

Penrith City Council invites Tenders from suitably qualified and experienced Project Manager & Consultancy team for the Civil, Architectural and Services Design of The Kingsway Sporting Complex and South Creek Park All Weather Athletics Facility, St Marys.

to make a submission visit opl.nsw.gov.au Pre-Tender Briefing at 10am Thursday, 22 January 2015. s Council has opened a new playground at Jamison Park featuring a double embankment slide, nest swing, pod spinner, a rubber crocodile, lizard and spider as well as a path suitable for young children to ride bikes and scooters. The next stage will be work on the Active Zone which will commence

Visit penrithcity.nsw.gov.au/Our-Council/Tenders/ to register and download tender documents free of charge. Alternatively a hard copy is available for a non-refundable fee of $75 (inc GST) by arrangement. For queries please contact Michael Doggett on 4732 8152 or

gym, seniors’ exercise equipment and a multi-sports court that will

mdoggett@penrithcity.nsw.gov.au

be completed by the end of March.

All submissions should be lodged on the forms provided in accordance

The playground is just one part of a $1.8 million upgrade of

with the lodgement instructions contained in the documents no later

Jamison Park that is being jointly funded by Penrith Council and

than 11am Wednesday, 4 February 2015 (‘the Closing Date’).

the State Government.

Tenders received after will not be considered.

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Friday 9 January 2015 the western weekender

in January. It will include equipment for 8–15 year olds, an outdoor


local news

10

Police assaulted at St Clair The good behaviour of local residents during New Year celebrations was tarnished when two police officers were allegedly assaulted in St Clair. The officers were in Palena Crescent responding to a call about an alleged assault when, at about 12.30am on January 1, they saw two males walking from the area. “Police stopped and approached the males when it is alleged that one of the males has assaulted police and a short struggle ensued,” said St Marys Local Area Command Crime Manager, Barry Vincent. “Whilst this male was being held by police, a second male has allegedly approached police and pulled a police officer to the ground before punching the officer a number of times.” The officer, from St Marys Local Area Command, was allegedly struck in the head, sustaining bruising and swelling while the first officer sustained minor injuries to his knee. “Police continued to struggle with this second male before he too was arrested and handcuffed,” Detective Inspector Vincent said. The men, a 37-year-old from Colyton and a 32-year-old from Oxley Park were then taken to St Marys Police Station, where they were issued Court Attendance Notices for ‘assault police’ and ‘resist officer in the execution of duty’. They will appear in Penrith Local Court on January 29. The officers are recovering.

POLICE

Police praise locals Cops happy with how Penrith celebrated the new year KATHERINE TWEED

@ktweed_

L

ocal police, who generally gear up for a big night on New Year’s Eve, have praised the behaviour of local residents celebrating the arrival of 2015. St Marys and Penrith Local Area Command took part in a joint operation over the New Year Period, Operation Corsair. As part of the operation, there were over 40 additional police officers working in the St Marys and Penrith Local Area Commands. Police conducted patrols of local licensed venues and transport interchanges as well as monitored the situation at the fireworks, which took place at Penrith Panthers. “The community in general was well behaved with no significant matters reported – although police continued to respond to a number of incidents during the night,” said St Marys Local Area Command Crime Manager, Barry Vincent. Crime Manager for Penrith Local Area Command, Grant Healey agreed. “We only had a couple of people we were disappointed in about their behav-

Police had an extra presence in the area on New Year’s Eve (file photo) iour. There were two incidents of assault, two assault police incidents, two people were charged with malicious damage and one offensive behaviour offence was recorded,” he said. “On a whole, we were very happy with how everyone was behaved. In the Penrith Local Area Command, the biggest event was the fireworks. The crowd was very well behaved and left the area without any major incidents.” However, at about 11.50pm on New Year’s Eve police had cause to stop and speak to an 18-year-old in Pyramid Street, Emu Plains.

The man was searched and police located a firework in his possession, for which he was handed an infringement notice carrying a fine of $1000. Mr Healey said that in general the behaviour of local residents throughout the entire silly season was great. “Everyone was fairly well behaved except for a small number of incidents, including one in South Penrith where a family had their Christmas presents stolen,” he said. That incident happened on Monday, December 22 on Fragar Road, and attracted huge community attention.

Mayor’s News The weekly views of Penrith’s Mayor

2015

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As Mayor of Penrith I am excited by the opportunities that lie ahead for Penrith as we welcome the New Year. Penrith is one of Sydney’s most dynamic and visionary cities, it is a growth city and the heart of the new west. Western Sydney is growing at twice the national average and Penrith produces services for half a million people, representing seven per cent of the state’s population and we will grow further. The opportunities presented by Penrith Lakes are limitless and will see a mix of quality open space for recreational activities blended with a diverse array of residential options. The site is larger than the CBD of Sydney and almost 10 times larger than Sydney’s Centennial Park. The Nepean River is one of the most popular places in Penrith for people to get out and enjoy. The State Government has started the early phases of construction on an iconic new bridge for pedestrians and cyclists, which will draw more people to this already popular area. Council continues to open new playgrounds and outdoor health

activities across the city. Jamison Park is undergoing a $1.8 million revamp. The children’s playground has been completed with work under way on extensions to the amenity buildings and reconstruction of four playing fields. The next stage will be work on the Active Zone which will include equipment for eight to 15-year-olds, an outdoor gym, seniors exercise equipment and a multi-sports court that will be completed by the end of March. Vital road and rail infrastructure is being prioritised with state and federal governments to alleviate pressures residents experience in commuting to work and in their daily lives. Job creation is high on our priorities too with Council welcoming the State Government’s commitment to its Metro Strategy and the development of the Broader Western Sydney Employment Area in meeting western Sydney jobs targets. The outlook for 2015 is very positive, I welcome the opportunities that lie ahead for the community, residents and businesses and I look forward to making them a reality.

ROSS FOWLER OAM Mayor of Penrith


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PLAYGROUND INJURY

13

Parents question safety of popular play area KATHERINE TWEED

errington eight-year-old Holly Thorpe came home to her mother one day with her finger so severely cut that her bone was visible and though her injuries were consistent with a severe accident, it happened when she fell over at a local playground. The incident happened at Thornton playground in North Penrith last month and has sparked a discussion among local parents, who are questioning the safety of the play area. “Her finger was scraped down to the bone; she could see her own bone. Obviously that causes an 8-year-old girl a lot of distress,” said Holly’s mum, Sara Ryk. “I understand that kids get hurt but when it is in a public play area that is supposed to be safe, it is disappointing.” Holly’s injury occurred when she slipped in a fountain adjacent to the play park and had her finger caught in a drainage grate. The fountain, which is full of children on a hot day, is surrounded by just a small retaining wall and Ms Ryk said that there is no signage to suggest that it isn’t a playfountain and that it is easily accessible by children. What is of the most concern to the local

mum is that Holly’s injury is not the only one that has occurred in the fountain and play area. Parents are saying that there have been a string of incidents that have left children with horrifying injuries, from grazes to cuts needing stitches and even head injuries. “The potential for much larger injury is concerning. I have spoken to another parent whose child slipped and hit his head very hard. Are we going to end up with a child dying from serious head injuries?” Ms Ryk said. “When you are talking about a play area, child safety should be paramount.” Ms Ryk said that she would not feel safe to take her daughter there again until the facility was made safer, so that not so many children would slip over in the water. Despite the concerns of parents, UrbanGrowth NSW has said that the playground is very popular and has received lots of positive feedback since its inception. UrbanGrowth NSW Development Director, Mike Williams said that the issue of the safety of children in the water play area is being addressed. “We want to make the playground as safe as it can be and ensure children can play safely in the water play area,” he said this week.

local news

W

@ktweed_

Sara Ryk with her daughter Holly. Inset: The injury Holly suffered at the playground

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14

COUNCIL

More consultation needed Residents impacted by new infrastructure projects fear for the future

local news

DALE DRINKWATER

@daledrinkwater

C

ouncillors Bernard Bratusa and Prue Car have acknowledged that there needs to be more community consultation on the South West Rail Link Extension and Outer Sydney Orbital (M9) projects. The admission comes after residents of Orchard Hills and Claremont Meadows made it clear to Penrith Council, late last month, that they were unhappy with the lack of consultation on the project. Bruce Downes, who has lived in Orchard Hills for over 17 years and is a member of the Stop The Orbital and Rail Corridor group (STORC), says residents feel like they’ve been hoodwinked. “Residents thought the land was protected, that’s what it said in the document people read when they moved in,” he said. Mr Downes added that STORC have been continually told it’s the beginning of the process, but are concerned it’s the end. “Council are not going to turn around after 12 months of planning then decide [where it will go], they’ve likely already decided,” he said. Another local resident, Christopher Rust, fears acoustic walls will be built on

Councillor Bernard Bratusa agrees more community consultation is needed

people’s fences, ruining their property values. “There’s so much at stake,” he said. “We invested our life savings when we moved to the area.” Cr Bratusa agreed with the community’s concerns, and said Council needs to advocate on behalf of the community until the residents are satisfied. “It is clear that there needs to be much more consultation, and a much better understanding on Council’s role in this,” he said. “We have to make sure we get this right, they’ve spoken, and they’ve spoken in numbers. It’s people’s homes, people’s lives, people’s future.” Cr Car has thrown her support behind the South West Rail Link but said it needs to be done right. “We’ve listened and moved motions to show that we don’t support a corridor that destroys residential properties,” she said. Though not final, the current rail and orbital corridor designs link Badgerys Creek and St Marys through Orchard Hills and Claremont Meadows. Are you affected? What’s your view? Email Dale.Drinkwater@westernweekender.com.au, call us on 4722 2998 or write to us at Suite 2, 42-44 Abel Street, Jamisontown 2750.

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MULTICULTURALISM

Dedication leads to key role on Council

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KATHERINE TWEED

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niversity of Western Sydney staff member Dr Sev Ozdowski’s passion for multiculturalism and human rights has led to his appointment as the Chair of the Australian Multicultural Council. Dr Ozdowski, Director of Equity and Diversity at the university who works out of the Werrington Campus, was appointed to the position by the Australian Government to lead the council as it advises the Government on multicultural affairs. “It will be a great pleasure to advise the Australian Government on how to strengthen and implement Australia’s multicultural policies and programs to serve us all well,� he said. “Celebrating diversity and the ‘fair go’ is what modern Australia is about. Our multicultural success makes Australia the envy of the world.� Dr Ozdowski has had a number of important roles in the fostering of multiculturalism in Australia and has been recognised with various Australian and international honours, including an Order of Australia Medal in 1995. These roles and honours made him a perfect candidate for the position, according to UWS Vice-Chancellor

Dr Sev Ozdowski Professor Barney Glover, who congratulated Dr Ozdowski on the position. “This is a very fitting appointment given Dr Ozdowski’s long and distinguished career in multicultural affairs in Australia, and his significant international reputation in human rights education,� Professor Glover said. Minister for Social Services, Kevin Andrews, made the announcement last month and said that the council will “ensure all Australians have the opportunity to participate, engage and contribute to Australian life�. Five others were appointed to take the council through its next three-year term.

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ACCIDENT

Car crashes into shop Parking in Penrith is a pain, but this is taking it too far

Tanning unit ban welcomed by most

local news

The NSW Government has led the way in Australia’s first attempt to reduce the skin cancer risk associated with artificial tanning by prohibiting UV tanning services. The commercial use of UV tanning units was made illegal from December 31, a decision rejoiced by Australian cancer and medical associations. Vanessa Rock, Prevention Manager at Cancer Council NSW, applauded the decision and hoped it sets a precedent for the rest of the country.

17

Cancer Council Prevention Manager, Vanessa Rock

A car crashed into a shop in the Penrith CBD on Wednesday. Photo: Ali Elali KATHERINE TWEED

eople often complain about struggling to find a park in the Penrith CBD, but we hardly think this is the right solution. At approximately 7.30am on Wednesday, January 7, police were called to the scene of a single vehicle accident on Station Street, Penrith. Upon arrival it was found that a vehicle had veered off the road in Penrith’s CBD

and careered straight through an entryway to Paul’s Warehouse, taking out a directional street sign on the way. The white sedan was damaged in the incident however there were no severe injuries. Local residents who were at the scene shortly after the incident had occurred said that it appeared as though the driver had meant to brake but accidentally stepped on the accelerator instead. It took emergency crews less than two hours to remove the car.

Friday 9 January 2015 the western weekender

P

@k_tweed

“Skin cancer remains a major public issue in Australia and banning solariums will help to save lives by removing a significant risk factor for this preventable disease,” Ms Rock said. “We highly commend the NSW Government for setting this precedent to ban commercial solariums, which has acted as a catalyst for similar bans across Australia,” she said. Environment Minister, Rob Stokes, said the move will protect families from the suffering of the deadly impact of skin cancer and also provided significant savings to our health system. “We know that Australia has the highest rate of skin cancer in the world and at least 10 people die from melanoma caused by UV tanning bed-use in NSW each year,” he said. The prohibition hasn’t come as a blessing for some, with a hair and tanning salon in Penrith now one of many beauty salons who are losing customers due to the ban. One salon employee, who didn’t wish to be named, said many people were disappointed by the decision, but it’s not just about businesses missing out on profits. “We had up to six to seven people using it a day, and we charged a dollar per minute up to 14 minutes per session,” she said. “It’s sad because some people who used it for skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis and skin pigmentation conditions will now need to pay hundreds [of dollars] at a doctor.” The salon worker highlighted the danger of using legal tanning beds in private homes, suggesting people can overuse the machines and burn. “In a salon it’s controlled, we had skin analysis here so if they were too light or burnt they were turned away, and customer usage was monitored,” she said. Mr Stokes said anyone in NSW caught charging a fee to use UV tanning services could now face fines of up to $44,000. – Dale Drinkwater


18

PROPERTY

Real estate market remains hot Property prices in Penrith continue to increase, but overall growth set to slow down

local news

DALE DRINKWATER

P

enrith is proving its worth as unit and detached house prices continue to rise in the growing city, despite combined capital city home values “losing steam”. Core Logic RP Data research analyst, Cameron Kusher, said despite the positive result across most cities, the annual rate of capital gain across Australia’s capital city housing market has continued to slow. According to an SQM Research report, the asking price for houses in Penrith has increased by 9.9 per cent to $547,000 since January 2014, with three bedroom houses increasing 11.5 per cent to $478,000. The report showed the asking price for units has dropped 2.9 per cent in the last month, but has still managed to maintain its increase on January last year up 7.6 per cent, sitting at $377,000. Mr Kusher said freestanding homes are still in high demand despite their higher price point. “We haven’t seen the same ramp up in building approvals for detached housing compared with multi unit dwelling approvals,” he said. “Based on the median price across the combined capital cities, houses are

It’s Nice Out Here

Property values in Penrith continue to rise

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attracting a $100,000 premium over apartments.” With the annual rate of home value growth in capital cities peaking in April at 11.5 per cent, Mr Kusher said peak value growth has passed, but expects dwelling values will continue to appreciate in 2015. “We would anticipate that the rate of growth will continue to slow through 2015 despite the low interest rate environment,” he said. SQM Research Managing Director, Louis Christopher, said he expected 2015 to be another positive year for residential property owners. “Basically, the money markets think it’s a dead certainty rates are going to be cut by April 2015, with the chances increasing of another rate cut in June,” he said. “If such rate cuts happen, housing markets will be boosted throughout the course of the calendar year.” Core Logic RP Data said even though dwelling values are generally still rising, rental growth is at its lowest annual rate in over 10 years. Are you interested in purchasing a property? We’re now home to Penrith’s leading property magazine, Western Property. Get your copy with the Western Weekender every Friday and check out the area’s best listings.

@daledrinkwater

@natetaylor87

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hooting is often given a bad name for obvious reasons but the St Marys Indoor Shooting Centre (SMISC) is hoping to change all that by giving local juniors the opportunity to learn more about the safe, fun and unique range of shooting sports. On the international stage, Australian shooters have stood out as some of the world’s best with gold medals at the Olympics and Commonwealth Games. Important to this success is the search and development of young and talented shooters. Operations Manager at SMISC, Ali Newbery, said the Junior Development Program will introduce juniors to all aspects of firearm safety while developing their skills in a competitive sport. “Safety is paramount to the sport and our fully trained and accredited range officers will take the juniors through every stage of firearm safe handling before introducing them to other aspects of the sport,” she said. “The program is specifically designed for first time shooters, however, Minors Permit holders can also take part. It will give them the knowledge and skills they need to enjoy the sport, learn new skills and make new friends along the way.” The Junior Development Program at SMISC has been running for many years

Have you tried shooting? and has provided hundreds of juniors with the opportunity to gain firsthand experience in the safe use of firearms. Sporting Shooters Association of Australia (NSW) Inc. Executive Director, Diana Melham, said shooting is a great sport for juniors to become involved in. “Anyone aged 12 to 17 can participate regardless of physical abilities or experience. It’s a fun and unique sport taught in a friendly environment where safety and education are of the upmost importance,” she said. The next intake for the 12-week program starts on Saturday, January 17 with an Induction Day beginning at 10am at St Marys Indoor Shooting Centre. A parent or legal guardian must also be present on the day and bookings are essential. To book or for more information call 8889 0406 or visit www.ssaansw.org.au.


19

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A Step Ahead

NOW


COMMUNITY

20 Local couple plans to build Hope in Uganda @daledrinkwater

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DALE DRINKWATER

A

selfless Penrith couple are packing up and flying to the tiny African nation of Uganda to build the first children’s home in a small community known as Hope. For a month in April, Katie TassoneMilligan and husband Ben Milligan are heading to the small town of Mityana, with not-for profit group 100% hOPE. “I’ve been involved with charities in Africa since primary school, but I was really disappointed with the amount of admin fees that would go with most of the charities, so I had some time where I was a bit disillusioned and hadn’t been sponsoring,” Mrs Tassone-Milligan said. “Recently I was introduced to 100% hOPE where 100 per cent of funds go to the allocated project.” Mrs Tassone-Milligan said she jumped at the chance to go over there. “I think Ben was a little bit shocked when I came home and said ‘I’m going to Uganda’,” she said. Mr Milligan admits it’s something very much out of the couple’s comfort zone but wasn’t too concerned for their safety. “Like any travel there is concern for safety, but we are going with a group of people and with someone who lives in the

area. It’s not something that everyone has the chance to do and we are really lucky we have this opportunity,” Mr Milligan said. The couple sponsor two children in Uganda and said they regularly receive letters and report cards from both the children and charity. “We get statements that come back and show where our funds have been allocated directly in relation to that child’s cost,” Mrs Tassone-Milligan said. This is the first time the charity has undertaken the project, named ‘Journey of hOPE’, with the whole construction expected to cost $60,000. “Each person needs to raise $3000 each, but Ben and I have pledged to raise $10,000 by April,” Mrs Tassone-Milligan said. President of 100% hOPE, Kate Wheatland, said since establishment in 2010, 100 per cent of funds donated to the organisation go direct to the ground in Uganda, with no administration deductions. “100% hOPE survives on the generous donations of others. We have annual events for fundraising such as a fundraising dinner, giving challenge and a fun run,” she said. Ms Wheatland added that this will be an annual trip, however, volunteers are welcome to come to 100% hOPE at any time throughout the year.

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From this week, businesses in parts of Penrith have less than 45 days to complete the moving of their phone and Internet services to the NBN before the copper services in their area are retired.

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News in Brief

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NSW recorded a record low road toll in 2014, according to Roads Minister Duncan Gay. “Provisional figures show 309 people died on NSW roads last year, compared to 333 in 2013, making this the equal lowest annual total since 1923,” Mr Gay said. “When you think our population has grown by more than five million since 1923 and there are now about 4.8 million more vehicles on our roads, it shows how significant this reduction is. “It is encouraging to see a decline in fatalities, but it’s still 309 people too many, 309 people who never made it home to their families and I know we

time need to act now to avoid being caught in a last minute rush. “The countdown is approaching and the time has come for remaining businesses still using copper services in the first areas of Penrith to place an order to move to NBN Co’s fibre network as soon as possible,” Mr Bogg said. “Copper line based phone and Internet services will begin to be switched off in the first parts of Penrith from February 20. “Although it may seem like businesses have had a long time to move, transferring services onto the NBN can take some time and coordination.” Representatives from NBN Co will be stepping up communication with businesses in coming weeks.

can bring this number down much further. “Thinking about the trauma experi-

Low

Road Toll enced by people who have lost a loved one on our roads is a strong reminder we must all do our bit to stay safe. “Let’s work together this year and ensure NSW has one of the best road safety cultures in the world.”


Workshops give Indigenous locals a chance to improve their business skills

A.GO ANTENNAS

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CALL Peter 0416 394 434 Indigenous Business Australia will hold free workshops in Penrith next week Indigenous Australians living in Penrith have the unique opportunity to get a leg-up in their business careers, with a specially designed workshop taking place close to home next week. Indigenous Business Australia (IBA) is holding a free ‘Into Business’ workshop on Wednesday, January 14, in Penrith, which is designed to help Indigenous Australians to create their own businesses and see them through to success. The workshops, which have been held previously in the local area, are part of the organisation’s national Business Development and Assistance Program. 1,300 workshops like this one have been held across Australia so far. “It is important to note that our workshops aim to prepare Indigenous Australians for business ownership – some workshop graduates go on to

source business finance from banks or IBA; others go on to start a business independently,” said IBA CEO, Chris Fry. “At the workshops participants work with a business specialist to learn how to thoroughly research their idea to determine whether it is commercially viable, and what is required to manage a business on a day-to-day basis.” The program has benefited over 2567 participants and boasts a 91 per cent success rate for businesses started up under the organisation’s care. “This emphasises how potential Indigenous entrepreneurs are being empowered to self-determine the feasibility of their business idea,” Mr Fry said. For more information or to reserve a place, FreeCALL 1800 107 107 as soon as possible. - Katherine Tweed

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Unique situation The problem was that Catherine’s new needs left the family in a bureaucratic quandary. “She went from needing no care to needing a high level of care,� Monica explains. “But due to the acute changes she had undergone in hospital and her lack of progress with rehabilitation she didn’t qualify for a transitional in-home aged care program.� The family are HCF members and when Monica saw the More at Home service on the HCF website she called up and explained Catherine’s predicament. “Out of all the organisations I talked to More at Home was the one that could help us, with the service being very supportive to us in our goals, with a can-do approach to meeting mum’s individual needs and a willingness to work with mum and her limitations, and encourage and motivate her to do things for herself,� Monica said. The other priority for Monica and her father was to have continuity of the healthcare worker, not a different person each day, which More at Home organised. After an initial six week qualification period, More at Home sought government funding to help cover a portion of Catherine’s care. Two-thirds of her care costs are now government funded, through More at Home. “She’s made incredible progress in four months that we wouldn’t have been able to achieve by ourselves,� Monica said. “The service providers are reliable, consistent, caring and responsive. They support what mum needs and work with the family. “More at Home empowers mum and gives her a sense of independence despite her limitations. I feel very fortunate and I’m very grateful. We wouldn’t have had the same outcome without More at Home. They enabled us to have the service provider of our choice, government funded and with less waiting time.� *Names have been changed to protect identities.

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hen Monica’s elderly mum suffered a major health crisis, HCF’s More at Home service was able to provide a home care solution. Monica’s* parents Joe and Catherine, now in their eighties, still live in their own home and that’s the way they’d like to keep it. But a year ago Catherine, 82 and mother of six, a characteristically cheerful and capable woman, tripped, sustaining a crush fracture of her right humerus. Over the next six months her general condition declined, affecting her ability to maintain her daily routine, including driving, mobility and overall wellness. Catherine’s confidence took a knock too and she began to show signs of confusion. Six months later she suddenly collapsed, and presented to the hospital with significant loss of mobility and cognitive function. 10 days later Catherine appeared well enough to be transferred to a rehabilitation hospital, however, did not progress as her treating specialist had hoped. After three weeks she collapsed again, requiring further emergency treatment for aspirated pneumonia, tachycardia and dehydration. When she finally recovered Catherine was discharged with the recommendation that she be moved into an aged care facility. She was able to get about with the help of a four footed walker but needed a lot of encouragement to eat and drink. Drained and exhausted, her spark had gone out, Monica says. Joe and Monica felt that the last thing Catherine needed was another traumatic change to her normal life. “The only way to optimise her recovery was to bring her home to her familiar routines and surroundings,� Monica states. “I went and I did my homework in regard to what support services options there were for mum to come home.�

• First, contact us to arrange an obligation-free personal assessment with a Client Service Coordinator (CSC) who will visit you at home at a convenient time. • Next, a program is designed to meet your individual home care needs, and a transparent personalised quote will be provided. • Finally, a CSC will liaise with you on a regular basis to ensure your service program caters to any changes in your personal needs or preferences. You don’t have to be an HCF member to access More at Home. For more information contact More at Home on 1300 550 124 or visit moreathome.com.au.


BUSINESS TIPS

23 MICHAEL TODD Small Biz Connect Advisor Penrith Valley BEC

An ode to home based businesses

How will you look back on 2015 in a year from now?

To kick off the new year, I am focusing on home based businesses: because I know there are many of you out there! Most of us are aware of the pros and cons of working from home. And if you have been operating for any length of time, you will know how much hard work it is too. So here are some tips that will help you to maximise the positives: 1. Take regular breaks: This can be tricky at home because it can be easy to be distracted by the home environment. So make sure your breaks involve physical exercise or even just getting outside to eat lunch. And if you do want to undertake ‘home’ tasks, make sure you put a time limit on them so they don’t eat into your work time. 2. Create designated work times: These times should also be communicated to your family and friends so that you can maintain uninterrupted work wherever possible. Many home-based business owners find that their friends and family don’t take their work ‘seriously’ and think that all manner of activities and tasks

unrelated to work can be included in your work day. Of course flexibility is a great advantage to working for yourself from home, but if your day is full of unplanned interruptions, your productivity will decline. 3. Interact with others: A large proportion of successful home based business owners lean toward the introverted end of the personality spectrum. This means that they work well on their own and don’t always need to interact with other people. But this isn’t necessarily a good thing! At some point, we all need to talk to and relate with others who are in similar environments. So if you aren’t already doing this, make networking a new year’s goal!

Twelve months from now, people will be looking back on 2015 and seeing the results of the choices they’re making now. For some people, it will look pretty much like 2014. The same story, just one year older. It must be the case for most people. Another year, and more unfulfilled ‘New Year’s Resolutions’. It is said that around eight per cent of these get achieved. If you had a good 2014, how can you build on that to make you and your business stronger in 2015? If you didn’t have a good 2014, what can you change or do to ensure it goes better for you? You have the most control over yourself. The blame game never works. So what do we need to do this year to make it a good one? Be proactive: The key to progress is taking control of it yourself. It is very important to be aware of what’s going on around you as well. Stay abreast of industry changes and keep one eye on the competition. Be confident and commit to your goals: A lack of confidence is one of the biggest obstacles to achieving both personal

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and business goals. You need to believe in your abilities, build on your strengths and address weaknesses when planning. Commit to doing whatever it takes to get you where you want to be, even if it involves some risk. Start every day prepared and engaged: If you want to advance, you need to demonstrate that you’re truly engaged in your business. It’s not enough to physically be there at your desk every day. Show up mentally prepared and ready to take action. Being active, tackling tasks and planning ahead are the characteristics you need to take the initiative in your business. Use technology to help you: Business will continue to be driven by better business technologies. Employees also want technology to help them be more efficient and productive so embrace that. It may even lead them to do more with less and work smarter, not harder. So here’s to a new year, if that is what you need for a fresh start mentally. You have control to make sure everything comes together to make your goals a reality.

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entertainment

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FEATURE STORY

The Amity Affliction returns to Penrith for one-off show Significant line-up changes have done nothing to stop the juggernaut that is The Amity Affliction, and now the band is returning to its regional and suburban roots with performances at venues such as the Evan Theatre at Penrith Panthers...

here’s no doubt that Gympie metalcore outfit The Amity Affliction have gained plenty of fans in Australia, but it’s their success in European countries, where heavier metal genres reign supreme, that’s been the most unexpected outcome for the band.

T

Friday 9 January 2015 the western weekender

KATE REID @kate_reid6

“They’re not really into the softer side but, I mean, we’re doing pretty well, which surprises me,” the band’s drummer, Ryan Burt said. “The heavier parts of our songs go down better but they’re sort of warming to us over there which is great. All the crowds were pretty good on the last tour. I don’t know, there’s something about us that they like.” 2014 was a big year for The Amity Affliction. The band released their fourth studio album ‘Let The Ocean Take Me’ in June, which debuted at number one on the ARIA charts, maintaining the pattern of success they found with 2012’s ‘Chasing Ghosts’. ‘Let The Ocean Take Me’ also became the band’s third consecutive album to reach Gold status. Add to that a string of sold out shows and touring dates across Australia, Europe and North America and

We haven’t played anything but main capital cities in years so I’m kind of excited to see it

things are certainly looking pretty rosy for the band, which formed over a decade ago during their final year of high school. Though The Amity Affliction has enjoyed plenty of success it hasn’t all been smooth sailing. As long time fans of the band will know, there’s been a number of line-up changes through the years, but it was the departure of lead guitarist Troy Brady – who founded the band alongside frontman Ahren Stringer – in October that really came as a shock, to everyone but the band. “We kind of knew it was going to happen for a little while there, so we’ve kind of been planning for it I guess. But yeah, it hasn’t really impacted the band too much to be honest,” Burt said. After Brady’s departure there’s been many questions as to who will take over. Talking to Burt, it seemed the current answer to that question is no-one. “I don’t think there will ever be an actual replacement, to be honest,” he said. “I think we’ll just have a permanent fillin type thing and just keep it the four of us with (guitarist) Dan included now.” The Amity Affliction are currently back in the country and have just commenced ‘The Weigh Downunder’ tour in support of their new single and video for the track ‘The Weigh Down’. The tour will see the band skipping the major cities in favour of regional and suburban dates across the country, including a stop off at the Evan

Theatre in Penrith on Thursday, January 15. “We’re playing a lot of places that we haven’t played in years,” Burt said. “We haven’t played anything but main capital cities in years so I’m kind of excited to see it.” Joining the band will be Byron Bay’s In Hearts Wake, who released their second album ‘Earthwalker’ in May, which made it to number 5 on the ARIA charts. The band are no strangers to touring with The Amity Affliction, having joined them on two previous tours. “They’re good friends of ours, we go way back so there’s no surprises there. We all know each other pretty well,” Burt laughed. The rest of the support band list reads like a mini metalcore festival with Melbourne band Confession and New Zealand’s Antagonist Ad playing alongside In Hearts Wake. After the Australian tour The Amity Affliction will be heading to the US in February, then it’s off to Europe before heading back to America for the Warped Tour. Add to that the fact the guys are currently working on a new album and it looks like 2015 is going to be another big year for The Amity Affliction. The Amity Affliction will be performing at the Evan Theatre on Thursday, January 15. For more information visit www. penrith.panthers.com.au.


AUSTRALIA DAY

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Unique way to spend Australia’s special day

Relax, unwind

OFF THE RAILS BLUE MOUNTAINS MONDAY, JANUARY 26 KATE REID @kate_reid6

f you’re looking for something a little different this Australia Day why not join The Blue Mountains Ukulele Group for their event ‘Off The Rails’. Starting with a set of Aussie favourites at the Glenbrook Gnome Festival in Glenbrook Park, The Blue MUGs will slowly make their way up the mountains, stopping at pubs and playing as they go. This travelling concert will give locals the chance to enjoy some energetic and entertaining ukulele

I

CHATTER ON THE BOX

NATHAN TAYLOR TV News

American Idol Eleven Friday 7.30pm

unday afternoons are the perfect time to relax with mates and celebrate those last few hours before the dreaded Monday hits. Add in some drinks and acoustic tunes and you’ve got the perfect farewell to the weekend. Penrith Hotel is offering exactly that with chilled out tunes in the beer garden every Sunday from 4pm to 7pm. The January line-up is choc-a-block full of sweet vocals and acoustic guitar. On Sunday, January 11, Katoomba singer Emma Wolthers will be entertaining the crowds while January 18 will see Karl Christoph delighting local audiences with his achingly beautiful vocals. This is just a taste of what’s to come so keep an eye out on Penrith Hotel’s Facebook page for future line-ups. Acoustic Sundays will be on at Penrith Hotel every Sunday from 4pm to 7pm. For more information call 4721 2060.

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pub rock. The final stop for the day will be the New Ivanhoe Hotel in Blackheath, where The Blue MUGs will settle in for the evening. The group, which has over 1000 members online, has been entertaining audiences since 2008, bringing together musicians of all backgrounds and ages. So this Australia Day grab some family and friends and join these merry musicians as they play their way up the beautiful Blue Mountains. The Blue Mountains Ukulele Group event ‘Off The Rails’ will be on Monday, January 26. For more information about the event visit www. bluemugs.com.au or email festival@bluemugs. com.au.

entertainment

ACOUSTIC SUNDAYS PENRITH HOTEL SUNDAYS 4PM-7PM

Movement at the stations Once again the ABC were under fire for another poor broadcast of the New Year’s Eve fireworks but the good news is, there should be a new official broadcaster for this year’s New Year’s celebrations after the ABC’s two year deal to broadcast the hugely popular event ended. As mentioned after 2013’s debacle, I don’t care which broadcaster picks it up next, just not the ABC.

The new season of ‘American Idol’ returned to ELEVEN last night and continues again tonight (Friday) at 7.30pm. As previously reported, there will be no results show this season, instead eliminations will be merged into the performance show.

Following the end of the long-running ‘The Colbert Report’ with Stephen Colbert, the Comedy Channel on Foxtel will soon be airing its replacement, ‘The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore’. It will premiere weeknights from Tuesday, January 20 at 7pm.

Channel Seven’s ‘Better Homes and Gardens’ will look very different this season with veteran DIY and renovating expert Rob Palmer departing the show after 13 years. Seven also announced that ‘Home and Away’ actress Demi Harman and ‘House Rules’ champ Adam Dovile will join the team in 2015.

FOX Sports has announced it will be airing all 32 games of the AFC Asian Cup live and in HD, starting with the opening game between Australia and Kuwait tonight at 8pm. FOX Sports will also be producing a weekly edition of ‘Santo, Sam and Ed’s Asian Cup Fever’ each Saturday.

Vicary’s Famous Woolshed Sing & dance the night away with our Famous Bush Band including a Delicious 3 Course Dinner & FREE Wine Tasting! - Bookings Essential www.vicaryswinery.com.au Northern Road, LUDDENHAM

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After his contract with Channel Ten ended last year, new KIIS FM drive host Dave Hughes will soon link up with Channel Nine as a co-host of the AFL version of ‘The Footy Show’. Nine’s Head of Programming Tim Cleary said Hughesy would do both stand-up and comedy with AFL players. Hughesy knows his AFL well having previously hosted ‘Before the Game’ on Ten.


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Gig Guide 09-18.01.2014

Saturday, January 10 Live Entertainment Venue: Club Paceway Free entry, 6.30pm 4721 2375 Big Swing Band Venue: Penrith RSL Free entry, 2pm 4728 5200 Love Generation Venue: Evan Theatre at Panthers Dinner & Show: $35-$45, Show only: from $10 6.30pm 4720 5555 Jellybean Jam Venue: Penrith RSL Free entry, 9pm 4728 5200 The Katy Perry Show Venue: Rooty Hill RSL $15-$20, 8pm 9625 5500

The Nuts Venue: Penrith Gaels Club Free entry, 7pm 4722 8180 M7 Venue: St Marys Leagues Club Free entry, 9pm 9677 7777 Matthew Dennett Venue: Springwood Sports Club Free entry, 5pm 4751 1298

Venue: Club Paceway Free entry, 6.30pm 4721 2375 The Australian Katy Perry Show Venue: Evan Theatre at Panthers $17-$22, 7.30pm 4720 5555 Urban Stone Venue: Penrith RSL Free entry, 9pm 4728 5200 Willie and Roy – The Legends Venue: Rooty Hill RSL $30, 8pm 9625 5500 Rapture Venue: Penrith Gaels Club Free entry, 7pm 4722 8180 Toxic Dolls Venue: St Marys Leagues Club Free entry, 9pm 9677 7777 Tripping Cognito Venue: Tattersalls Hotel Free entry, 8.30pm 4732 6373 Sharon Bowman Venue: Springwood Sports Club Free entry, 8pm 4751 1298 Burnside Venue: Penrith Hotel Free entry, 8pm 4721 2060 Matthew Dennett Venue: Springwood Sports Club Free entry, 5pm 4751 1298

Sunday, January 11 Karaoke Venue: St Marys Band Club Free entry, 6pm 9623 1211 Curbside Twisters Venue: Penrith RSL Free entry, 2pm 4728 5200 Melody Rhymes Venue: St Marys Leagues Club Free entry, 1pm 9677 7777 Friday, January 16 Lepers & Crooks Venue: Tattersalls Hotel Free entry, 9pm 4732 6373 Acoustic Soloist Venue: Red Cow Free entry, 4.30pm 4721 5666 DJ Stu-E Venue: Penrith RSL Free entry, 9pm 4728 5200 Live Entertainment Venue: Wallacia Panthers Free entry, 7.30pm 4773 8417 Karaoke Venue: Penrith Hotel Free entry, 8pm 4721 2060 Social Darts Venue: St Marys Band Club Free entry, 7pm 9623 1211 Sips and Sounds Venue: Penrith Regional Gallery Free entry, 4pm 4735 1100 Backlash Venue: Penrith Gaels Club Free entry, 8pm 4722 8180 Hard Rock Amigos

THE KATY PERRY SHOW @ ROOTY HILL RSL SATURDAY, JANUARY 10 $15-$20, 8PM Venue: St Marys Leagues Club Free entry, 9pm 9677 7777 Midnyte Sun Venue: Springwood Sports Club Free entry, 8pm 4751 1298

Saturday, January 17 Lional Robinson Venue: Penrith RSL Free entry, 2pm 4728 5200 Live Entertainment

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entertainment

Friday, January 9 Aversions Crown Venue: Tattersalls Hotel Free entry, 8pm 4732 6373 Acoustic Soloist Venue: Red Cow Free entry, 4.30pm 4721 5666 DJ Stu-E Venue: Penrith RSL Free entry, 9pm 4728 5200 Live Entertainment Venue: Wallacia Panthers Free entry, 7.30pm 4773 8417 Karaoke Venue: Penrith Hotel Free entry, 8pm 4721 2060 Social Darts Venue: St Marys Band Club Free entry, 7pm 9623 1211 Sips and Sounds Venue: Penrith Regional Gallery Free entry, 4pm 4735 1100 Skyz The Limit Venue: Penrith Gaels Club Free entry, 8pm 4722 8180 The Frocks Venue: St Marys Leagues Club Free entry, 9pm 9677 7777

edited by: Kate Reid

Sunday, January 18 Karaoke Venue: St Marys Band Club Free entry, 6pm 9623 1211 Tall Timbres Venue: Penrith RSL Free entry, 2pm 4728 5200 Melody Rhymes Venue: St Marys Leagues Club Free entry, 1pm 9677 7777 Ange Venue: Springwood Sports Club Free entry, 1pm 4751 1298 Acoustic Sessions Venue: Penrith Hotel Free entry, 4pm 4721 2060

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EAT OUT PANAROTTIS

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Mouth watering pizza and pasta in Penrith From amazing pastas to pizzas that are to die for, Panarottis inside the Panthers complex is the perfect place to dine out, whether it’s for a night out as a couple or a celebration with the entire family hen dining out it’s hard to go past the classic combination of pizza and pasta. And one of the best places in Penrith to grab a slice is Panarottis, located in the Panthers complex. On the menu is a range of pizzas to suit every budget with classic and gourmet options. On the classic menu is all the family favourites: hawaiian, margherita, al supremo and vegetarian. For gourmet choices there’s chilli chicken and pesto; lamb, pumpkin and feta or the mobster with savoury mince, sausage, beef strips, mushrooms and BBQ sauce. Or if you prefer you can create your own pizza with your choice of toppings. The pasta options are just as mouth watering with the choice of spaghetti, fettucini or penne and delicious sauces like the peri-peri chicken, puttanesca, arrabiata and veal and mushroom. There’s also a list of speciality pasta dishes including veal saltimbocca and

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spinach and ricotta ravioli. It’s not just the pizza and pasta options, there’s also a range of meat, poultry and seafood dishes like the lamb shank napolitano, spicy seafood padella and parmesan and parsley-crusted pork cutlet. Rounding out the menu is a range of oven bakes, salads, pizza breads and desserts. Panarottis also offers diners great value with a range of specials including Monday Madness, where you can grab $15 pizzas and pastas from 5pm. On Tuesdays – or 2s-Days as it’s known – you can get a free classic pizza when you buy any gourmet pizza. If you’re planning on taking the little ones out then the best night to do it is Wednesday when kids eat free with a full paying adult. Panarottis is located in the Panthers complex and is open 12pm to 3pm and 5.30pm to 9pm Monday to Thursday and Sundays, and 12pm to 3pm and 5.30pm to 10pm Friday to Saturday. For more information call 4720 5522 or visit www.panarottis.com.au.

STRUTH!

Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre, Penrith

DAVE ELLIS

weird, wacky and wondrous travel stories

Staing

DAMIEN LEITH Filled with humour, emotion and great Irish music.

Featuring

SMASH HITS HALLELUJAH, WICKED GAME, DANNY BOY & MANY MORE

THE PARTING17 GLASS January 8pm

Friday 9 January 2015 the western weekender

BOO K NOW

597 59 97 HHigh igh Street Penrith 02 4723 7600 www.thejoan.com.au WW15048

The sign today after a major restoration in the late 1970s. Photo: Los Angeles Dept of Recreation and Parks In his continuing search for the more weird, wacky and wondrous in the world of travel, David Ellis says that when a real estate company in California put up a sign promoting a new land sale on the outskirts of Los Angeles in December 1923, it planned on it staying in place for around 18 months. That was 91 years ago, and the sign is still there today – albeit having been shortened by four letters – and is probably the most-photographed and recognised billboard the world has ever known. It’s the famous single-word HOLLYWOOD that stretches 110m across Mt Lee in the Hollywood Hills in letters 45m high, and which originally read HOLLY-

WOODLAND, the name of the real estate development. The letters LAND were removed in 1949 and when the remainder fell into disrepair by the late 1970s, founder of Playboy magazine, Hugh Hefner and eight others including cowboy movie star Gene Autry and singers Andy Williams and Alice Cooper, gave US$27,778 each to totally restore it at a cost of $250,000. The sign is so popular that some 40 tour companies now run daily trips from Los Angeles to viewing points in the Hills to ogle and photograph it, while LA’s Dept of Recreation and Parks has an el cheapo US$10pp shuttle to the Griffith Space Observatory for excellent views.


29

entertainment

FREE EVENT

6PM - 9:30PM SYDNEY INTERNATIONAL REGATTA CENTRE Grab your family and friends and head to the Regatta Centre, Penrith Lakes on Monday 26 January for more than three hours of non-stop free entertainment and ASPECTACULARlREWORKSDISPLAY

penrithcity.nsw.gov.au/ausday 1300 736 836

Target Radio

Network

targetradionetwork.com.au

WW15056

Friday 9 January 2015 the western weekender

Parking available from 5:30pm .ONSMOKINGEVENT.OALCOHOL .OGLASSORUNSEALEDBOTTLES.OPETS

This year’s line up includes: 2014 X-Factor Winner - Marlisa Taylor Henderson Seattle Sound Justine Clarke The Jitterbugs Plus kids entertainment & activities


entertainment

30

MAKE A MESS LEWERS GALLERY WED, JAN 14

Mess it up t’s not easy to find new and interesting ways to keep the kids occupied over the holidays but the Penrith Regional Gallery has a solution. On Wednesday, January 14, the gallery will be holding the Make A Mess – Eton Mess Family Workshop which will give parents and kids a chance to explore their creative and culinary skills in the beautiful gallery grounds. The workshop will start with a lesson in furniture stencilling, with families given the opportunity to decorate their very own step stool with paints and hand-made stencils to create a personalised piece to add to the home. It’s then off to the kitchen to join Cafe At Lewers’ chef Steve Grant who will teach you how to create the delicious Eton Mess. Make A Mess – Eton Mess Family Workshop will be held on January 14 from 2pm. Bookings are $35 per family (2-4 people). Call 4735 1100.

I

GIVEAWAY SPARKUP READER

hese days kids spend much of their time looking at screens, whether it be a computer, tablet or TV. But if you’re wanting to get them back to the simple pleasure of a book then Sparkup Reader may be what you’re looking for. Designed for boys and girls aged three to six years, this revolutionary device clips straight onto any picture book and then reads it out loud to your child. Parents can record the voices for the book themselves and the Sparkup camera will take pictures of the book as they record. Then when a child connects the camera to the book Sparkup will recognise each page, reading the words out loud for your child to enjoy. Sparkup can hold approximately 50 recorded storybooks so there’s plenty of room to store all your child’s favourite stories. West Life has two Sparkup Reader prize packs to give away. For your chance to win one, email the code word ‘SPARKUP’ to competitions @westernweekender.com.au with your name and contact details. Entries close Wednesday, January 14. Authorised under NSW Permit Number LTPM/14/00047. Terms and conditions at www.westernweekender. com.au or Weekender reception.

T

SUFFERING constant BACK PAIN? Want to ENJOY LIFE again?

Work & play like you used to after just a few sessions! I’ve personally developed this Technique after 16yrs experience: “After years of severe back pain I’m now enjoying golf, fully pain free and even started brick-laying again!” John Hasler, Glenmore Park

Friday 9 January 2015 the western weekender

“I’d given up really - I’d tried so many things. In just a couple of sessions the pain and muscle spasms had gone. I recommend your work to anyone.” Craig Gibson, Richmond Andreas Klein Nutritionist & Remedial Therapist BSc, Adv Dip Nut Med, DRM

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TEST YOUR BRAIN

crossword 1

2

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Fill in all squares so each row, column and each of the nine 3 x 3 squares contain all digits from one to nine.

19

26

30

10

14

17

20

9

seniors

ACROSS 1. Waistcoat 4. Insistent 8. Dusting powder 11. Long-tailed American parrot 13. Received news 15. Paris river 17. Ciao! 18. Synthetic fabric 20. Entire number of 21. Showing allegiance 24. Titled 27. ... & outs 28. Stomach 30. Dorks 31. Crustaceans with nippers 33. Weigh up 34. Orchard crop 35. Look-alike 36. Actress, ... Winslet 39. Bucketed down 42. Caustic 44. Dread 45. Submarine overhaul 46. Bring in (harvest) 48. Pigs 49. Banjo sound 50. Learnt by heart 52. Becomes dull 54. Orange skin 55. Indonesian dish 56. Glowing coals 57. Bureau 60. Spheres 62. Counterbalance 65. Small domestic fowl 67. Sweet herb 69. Not ever 70. Upright 72. However 73. Volcano shafts 75. Apart (from) 77. Garment edge 79. Love 81. Every ..., Dick and Harry 82. Mistreat 84. Ruminated 85. Disturb

4

sudoku

58

56

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62

67

54

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86. Medicine amount 87. Marches 88. Requirement DOWN 1. Temporary visitor document 2. Say “cheese” 3. Brown colour 4. Somewhere else 5. Strolls 6. Discussion schedule 7. Those people 8. Attempt

71

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84

61

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87

9. Impromptu (2-3) 10. Tins 12. Honeycomb segments 14. Waltz virtuoso, ... Rieu 16. Nudge 19. Start 22. Shellfish 23. Speak back 25. Outlook 26. Finger-shaped pastry 29. Portable light 32. Request 35. Fell 37. Disgust

88

38. Riddles 40. Alleviates 41. Postpone 42. Gangway 43. Discourage 44. Duds 47. Astounding 51. Empty talk 52. Father or mother 53. Grease marks 54. Bombarded 58. Implant 59. Knockouts (1,2) 61. Gnaws

Last week’s solutions

63. Fist, bunch of ... 64. Cosmetic sampler 65. Radiated 66. Districts 68. Minute particles 71. Laundry slide 72. Length unit 74. Bobs head 76. Favours owed (1,1,2) 78. Repair 80. Lament 83. Clock tower, Big ...

Friday 9 January 2015 the western weekender

WW14344


AUTO

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WW8041

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because we’ve both got young families, so every penny matters to us, just as it does to the customer,” Darren said. The boys encourage you to come in and see them whenever it is time for a minor service, as letting problems go unaddressed can often create major issues down the track, which can become very costly. You’re better off addressing issues as they arise so they don’t become major headaches later. For almost all of your automotive needs, you can be rest assured that Darren and Jason will offer the highest quality service every single time. All West C.V. Joints also offer a convenient pick up and delivery service for all clients. So if you’re planning a trip in the near future, make sure you see the team at All West C.V. Joints to ensure it’s a safe one. Contact them on 4731 2083.

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Friday 9 January 2015 the western weekender

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WW6882

automotive

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PENRITH

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PATIOMAN

picture?? pi p iccttu tu urree???

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WW298

• • • •

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Licence No. 95571C ABN 70 510 279 284

Driveways

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W: rondys.com.au

• Flexible Delivery

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Before

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Bricklayers

SMS CODE B R I 0 2

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After

Fencing Contractors

For a free quote call Pete on

0419 823 215 or 4727 0057

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SMS CODE G A R 0 2

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SMS CODE C L E 0 1

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WW294

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SMS CODE L A W 0 2

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Glenmore Park

Lic No. 44995C

Jason - 0417 221 822 • Mark - 0417 223 288 A/H - 4733 2525

Call 1300 785 845 or Book online at binbuddies.com.au

BOO K YO UR TOD AY!

SKIP

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SMS CODE T R E 0 1

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KKR LANDSCAPES Timber•lock Retaining Walls excavation, concreting, Kwik Kerb, paving, edging in steel timber paver brick bush rock or sandstone. Call Shaun on 0410436206

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Frank & Olly’s

M&J

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Lic 83907c

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$

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All garden and lawn services provided including:

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Sunflower

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NEPEAN MAINTENANCE PLUMBING

Lic No. 4715C

4

96

14

W

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CRICKET

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Crunch time for Penrith

Cricket side back on the pitch at Howell Oval this weekend @natetaylor87

P

enrith Cricket Club head coach Steve Small is looking at his team’s current situation with the glass half full not half empty approach as the second half of the Sydney Grade Cricket season officially gets underway this weekend. Following a well-deserved three weeks off over the Christmas break, Penrith’s first grade team will return to the crease this Saturday hanging on to a top six spot with three wins, two draws and two losses to their name. Speaking with the Weekender, Small said it was a rather interesting first seven matches of the season, which was affected by bad weather, missing players and the death of Australian Test cricketer Phillip Hughes. “It was quite an interesting time with the sadness of Phil Hughes’ passing, we had a round called off against St George, there was a little bit of weather and we didn’t play that well against Northern District,” he said. “We are at the stage where we are in the

Penrith cricketers trained in the nets on Wednesday. Photo: Melinda Jane

six, which is really good, and we haven’t been playing our best cricket. However, now, everyone is going to have to lift their game.” Penrith will return to their Howell Oval home this Saturday morning to take on Eastern Suburbs in the second of six One Day matches of the season. “Eastern Suburbs were down at the bottom last year and have improved their game this season,” Small said. “Our bowling and fielding isn’t too bad but our batting must improve, we’ve got to bat better.” With seasoned players like Pat Cummins and Josh Lalor in and out of the line-up through representative and Big Bash cricket duty, Small highlighted the emergence of young up and coming bowler Michael Collins. “Michael’s been one of the revelations this season. He’s only fairly young but he’s one of the bright stars of the future,” he said. “If we can lift another 10 per cent we should be able to make an indent in the comp.” Penrith’s last game on December 20 saw them defeat Hawkesbury by 105 runs.

sport

NATHAN TAYLOR

FOOTBALL

NRMA still on board NATHAN TAYLOR

@natetaylor87

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The Wanderers and NRMA Insurance have signed a new sponsorship deal football in western Sydney and look forward to the development of an indigenous scholarship program, the first of its kind in the A-League.” Mr Cornish added that western Sydney will remain a key focus for NRMA Insurance. “It’s our customer heartland and the heartland of Australian football,” he said.

Congratulates all the Winners

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Friday 9 January 2015 the western weekender

he Western Sydney Wanderers were treated to an early Christmas present late last month with the news that NRMA Insurance had extended its partnership with the club for a further three seasons. Coming on as a Wanderers foundation sponsor back in 2012, NRMA Insurance will continue as the Wanderers naming rights and major sponsor well into the future, courtesy of a new multi-million dollar deal. “We are proud to have NRMA Insurance continue as our naming rights and major sponsor for a further three seasons and look forward to achieving even more together over this term,” Wanderers CEO, John Tsatsimas said. “Whether it be their engagement with our members, our elite men’s and women’s teams to our extensive community activity NRMA Insurance have been right there by our side.” NRMA Insurance CEO, Andy Cornish, said the new deal wasn’t just a commitment to the club and its players but the entire western Sydney community through growing the game. “We see this renewal as not only a sign of how committed we are to the Western Sydney Wanderers but also to the people of western Sydney who passionately support this iconic club,” he said. “I am proud that NRMA Insurance can now also support women’s and youth


38

FOOTBALL

sport

Wanderers remain without a win NATHAN TAYLOR

@natetaylor87

A

dejected Tony Popovic says he’s proud and hasn’t lost faith in his side despite losing to Melbourne Victory 2-1 on Tuesday night. The Wanderers coach looked miserable in the post-match press conference but still remained hopeful that his side would eventually turn their fortunes around in February after the Asian Cup break. The Wanderers are now the only team in the A-League without a win to their name, and their aspirations of making a third consecutive finals appearance are diminishing with every loss. But despite all the doom and gloom surrounding his side, coach Popovic says he’s still right behind them. “I’ve never lacked belief in what I’m doing and I don’t lose belief after watching that, but we are in a business of points and at the moment we haven’t got them,” he said. “Watching that tonight, I’m proud of that performance. We’re evolving as a team, we’re playing better, there’s certain areas in our game that have improved but unfortunately we’re not ruthless enough.”

With the scores locked at 1-1 midway through the second half and the Wanderers pushing hard for a goal, it appeared as if the Asian Champions were finally going to break their unwanted streak in front of 14,000 fans at Pirtek Stadium. However, Melbourne’s Besart Berisha had other ideas late in the game, going on a great counter attack which ultimately led to an opportunistic goal to Gui Finkler. Popovic admitted he thought the game would end a lot differently after the Wanderers looked the eager of the two sides. “It was a good game and we were well on top but we didn’t put away the opportunities that we had. At 1-1 I only thought there’d be one winner and I thought we’d get one [goal],” he said. “The effort’s there, the commitment’s there, the belief’s there but there’s a small percentage of things missing.” The Wanderers will now enjoy three weeks off due to the Asian Cup break and will continue their quest for their first victory against Melbourne City on February 1. “These few weeks will make a big difference for our club. I know we’ll be better, we’ll definitely be better,” Popovic said.

Melbourne’s Besart Berisha was too much to handle for the Wanderers. Photo: Melinda Jane

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FOOTBALL

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PEACOCK’S POINT ADAM PEACOCK

FOX SPORTS is the only place to watch every game of the AFC Asian Cup LIVE with comprehensive pre and post-match coverage

Thanks to Santa Claus, kids and relatives everywhere, New Year’s celebrations and the laidback nature of this time of year, it hasn’t really hit us yet. But it’s about to. The Asian Cup – Australia’s big chance at winning a major trophy, unique because it’s here in front of our eyes. The other 15 nations are here too, some inconspicuously – like North Korea – and others who have put themselves in front of their adopted community immediately, like Japan, who 36 hours after arriving put on a friendly in Cessnock, where 4,000 locals showed up. Japan are staying in the Hunter Valley at a plush resort, but still, the sight of millionaire footballers like Keisuke Honda and Shinji Kagawa playing for their national side at the home of the Cessnock Goannas Rugby League club was a unique one. A great one too, the pitch was magnificent – better than any A-League surface. The expat communities of countries like Iran, Iraq and South Korea have been stirred into action to get behind their original homeland, and it’s their fervent

support which promises to turn this from just a sporting event to something a little more special. Back to our guys though, who are preparing in Melbourne in a short, but intense, 10-day build up to the first game against Kuwait. The results have been missing since the World Cup. Many say the performances too. Some think Ange Postecoglou has tried to change too much too soon. Using 42 players in 12 games is the factual ammunition for that claim. Others counteract it as a necessary evil in order to sort out who is capable at this level. Our best are an even bunch, playing in all corners of the globe at various levels. Tim Cahill is a household name across all sport. For instance, a few days ago a TV network wanted to interview Cahill for that night’s news. Socceroos staff, rightly, pointed out it wasn’t his turn to chat to the media – he’d done so days earlier – it was the turn of

others. But still, all the network wanted to know about was Cahill, and led their report with news that the Socceroos leading goalscorer was at training. I would have thought it was news if he wasn’t there, but the point is, Tim is the main man, the only one that is easily identifiable to the great Australian public. That’s the opportunity though for the next month for others in the Socceroos squad. No better place to make a name for yourself than at home, with all eyes fixed. Get the Socceroos to the final on January 31 in Sydney, or do something special that night, and a new star can be born. It might be Cahill enhancing his reputation again. If it is, great. As long as that person is wearing a Socceroos shirt, that’s all that matters. Catch all 32 games of the Asian Cup live on Fox Sports from January 9 to 31, starting with coverage of the Socceroos v Kuwait from 7pm on Friday, January 9. Let’s hope we’re celebrating something magical from the Socceroos.

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A-League rests as eyes turn to Cup

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Wallace eyes Eels trial Halfback’s recovery close to complete as Panthers return to training NATHAN TAYLOR

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enrith Panthers halfback and captain Peter Wallace is on the last couple of miles of his road to recovery and has earmarked the club’s final pre-season trial against Parramatta on February 21 as his comeback game. Wallace’s season was cut short in 2014 after he suffered a devastating knee injury during Penrith’s shock loss to the Cronulla Sharks in chilly Bathurst last July. Fortunately for fans and his teammates, Wallace’s return is inching closer and the 29-year-old is doing everything he can to be right for what’s expected to be a huge season ahead. “I’m going alright… I did pretty much the whole session today bar a bit of contact stuff,” Wallace said on Tuesday morning. “I’ve made sure I’ve done everything in rehab to make sure it’s (knee) strong. Everything is on track and the Parramatta trial is the goal, at this stage.” Wallace’s courage was on full display when he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee last year, playing out the rest of

Peter Wallace on Tuesday. Photo: Melinda Jane the Sharks game hobbling on one leg. After learning of Wallace’s injury, Panthers coach Ivan Cleary labelled it as one of the “toughest performances” he’d ever seen.

However, due to the nature of Wallace’s injury, his recovery wasn’t as smooth sailing as he would’ve liked. “It was a bit slow at the start but that was expected. The kind of surgery I had was I had a patellar graft put in, so the recovery from that is generally a little bit slower than the other type,” Wallace revealed. “I now just have to make sure that I’m not doing too much and just sort of train within myself. There’s still two months to go before we start playing. I just need to build up to full training and I should be right.” The Panthers returned to pre-season training this week after spending three weeks away enjoying the Christmas break. Wallace said he’s loving being back alongside halves partner Jamie Soward again and is looking forward to re-igniting their devastating combination, which saw the Panthers finish fourth last season. “Jamie Soward is great… his back half of the year was outstanding. I’m really looking forward to working with him again and hopefully pick up where we left off,” he said. “We gelled pretty quick last year and it was the first time today we had a run as a team. It felt pretty good, slotted straight back in.”

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Profile for Western Sydney Publishing Group

Weekender January 9  

Western Weekender January 9 edition

Weekender January 9  

Western Weekender January 9 edition