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Letters to the Editor: Friday, November 11, 2016

Written By: admin - Jun• 13•19

SHOCK: Donald Trump’s victory in the US election has taken the world by surprise. But win he did and now we must remember that part of democracy is accepting the result.
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IT’S an interesting time we find ourselves in and is not too distinct from previous turning points in the history of the world.

The winner of the vote in the USA is less relevant than the fact that the country is split in half and there is a lot of space between the two sides.

Brexit illustrated a similar split and there is no doubt there is a global uprising of nationalist fervour. We are not immune in . The key thing for me is why has this occurred. No doubt xenophobia, an incredibly negative media and ignorance plays a part however the main issue is that there are genuine grievances that need to be addressed and people with little power are sick to death of being stepped on, being taken advantage of, having their concerns ignored, threatened and lied to.

The rhetoric now would be better served at mending fences than insighting further division or being derisive of alternate views. The USA would be well served to educate themselves on other cultures and countries. They are far from the greatest country on the planet and should the ‘leader of the free world’ be decided by a democratic election, they wouldn’t even get a look in.

The best outcome would have been for a palatable right leaning change agent to be elected which would have had a chance to bring the country together.

The Donald has his hands full and his business approach, that there has to be a winner and a loser, won’t serve the planet well, however these things go in cycles and the disgruntled of the planet have the con. History shows human beings never learn.

The guy won fair and square in the face of a biased media, against a serious well-funded political machine and without any endorsements of stature and with his many misgivings front and centre. It is democracy at work. In a democracy you get to have your say, but you also have to respect the result.

Brad Audet, RedheadTaking fear out of billI WRITE in reference to Jacquie Svenson’s article (‘Warning: How a Crown land bill could ruin your weekend’, Herald,9/11). I think Ms Svenson could not be more mistaken on the details of the NSW government’s Crown Lands Management Bill, passed on Wednesday by the NSW Parliament.

This Bill will lead to a more consistent approach to Crown land management.

Ms Svenson states that much of Crown land will be transferred to councils to be sold. I think this is incorrect. Land may be transferred to councils to remove an infuriating level of red tape. Currently councils and the NSW government must both provide lengthy assessments for something as simple as upgrading a public toilet on Crown land. Land will only be transferred where it is agreed to by the council and the community are consulted. Land will be transferred as ‘community land’ meaning that the land cannot be sold or developed.

Ms Svenson states that the objects of the Bill reflect the move towards sale of Crown land rather than Crown land management. Again, I say this is incorrect. The final Bill’s objects require environmental, social, cultural heritage and economic considerations to be taken into account in decision-making. The Bill’s objects also recognise for the first time the connection of the Aboriginal people with Crown land.

Ms Svenson states that the Bill turns the NSW Crown Lands Division into a Public Trading Enterprise. I think this is incorrect. Management structures within the department do not form any part of this bill. What the legislation does is enshrine the need for community consultation. For the first time in the history of the Crown land legislation, consulting with local communities will be mandatory.

I think Ms Svenson’s article is a transparent scare campaign with many of her points taken straight from Labor Party talking points.This legislation is a great win for the people of this state.

Scot MacDonald MLC,Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter and Central CoastHow did it come to thisHOW could you? How could you America? You have elected a uniquely unqualified, wretched, divisive, mythomaniac as your president. He is a man whose ethics, both business and personal, I think are beneath contempt. His respect for women, those of different race or religion appears to not exist. He promotes fear and hatred, only slightly less than he promotes himself.

I know it was a Hobson’s choice situation, but how did it come to this?

follows American trends. That is my great fear.

Paul Sutcliffe,Fern BayBit of fun, once a yearWELL Stan Melidonis- Kolinas (Letters, 2/11), Annie Richards (Letters, 4/11) and Greg Hunt (Letters, 5/11) certainly seem to be wound up about that traditional n institution, the Melbourne Cup.

Surelyif it worries them so much they can easily choose not to watch the race on TV, listen to it on radio or read about it in the newspapers.

I have no interest in horse racing at all but surely it’s not the end of the world if the vast majority of people do enjoy it once a year, join in a sweep or have a little bet on this sporting event that has been part of our life for such a long time.

Stan seems to think the Cup race is only for the enjoyment of “wealthy socialites, drunken yobbos, overweight women and seductive vamps decked out like peacocks”, how wrong you are Stan.

Greg is assuring us the race will eventually go the way of cock fighting and bare knuckle fighting, there is no comparison Greg and I can assure you the Melbourne Cup will be alive and well long after you and I have gone.

Ian King, Warners BayFreedom for someI THINK Jim Gardiner’s letter (Letters, 10/11) is typical of the conservative class advocating relaxation of laws that protect people from character assassination, racial bigotry, and sexual preference. While always eager to have the power to say what they like, they are so sensitive to any vilification of their peculiar, and usually heartless, ideologies and twisted logic.

Politicians in both houses are not permitted this liberty, the Speaker will not allow the word liar to be used, but the conservatives hangers on were screaming to all and sundry in the media during the Gillard years, calling her a liar, ditch the witch, drown her at sea. Seems this class likes one law for themselves and another for the rest, pretty typical of this section of society.

Brian Crooks, Scone

Centenary of the Great War

Written By: admin - Jun• 13•19

Extracts from The Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners’ Advocate for November 6-12, 1916.
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FRONT AND CENTRE: n troops with weapons ready, pose for a photo in their frontline trench. Photo: Courtesy of The Digger’s View by Juan Mahony. Visit thediggersview成都夜总会招聘.au

WOMEN TEACHERSSo many male members of the teaching staff of the NSW Department of Public Instruction have enlisted that it is found necessary to relax a rule which for a number of years has been followed in regard to the appointment of women teachers to schools in the remote country districts of the State. It has been the practise that women should not be sent to such schools unless there is an assurance that suitable accommodation is available. It is now found necessary to ask women teachers to make some sacrifice of comfort in order that the work of the department in the country districts may not be impaired, and applications are invited from those who are willing to accept service in such schools for the period of the war. The official announcement says: “Although applicants may expect to be called upon to endure some degree of loneliness and inconvenience inseparable from service in more or less remote country schools, no woman will be required to accept appointment unless the department has assurance beforehand that reasonably satisfactory residential accommodation is available.”

VOLUNTARY AIDSMore than 50 voluntary aid nurses were seen at work on the battlefields of Woodlands Convalescent Horne,Church-street, Newcastle, on Saturday afternoon. Colonel Beeston, C.M.G., and a large attendance of the public were provided with an opportunity of witnessing and better appreciating the laudable spirit and thoroughness of the young ladies engaged at the home.

Under the direction of Sergeant Morgan, and the commandant, Miss J. Donaldson, the aids gave an interesting exhibition, which embraced stretcher drill and other exercises. The most spectacular feature was the works of the six stretcher sections. At one end of the battlefield, otherwise the lawn tennis court, lay six young children, evidently needing prompt attention. Fortunately for the public, it had been a bloodless battle, and the half-dozen heroes and heroines exhibited a truly British-like stoicism, notwithstanding their wounds, while awaiting help. At a given signal the six sections, each composed of half a dozen nurses, dashed to the sides of the patients, who, in a short space of time, were bandaged, and transferred to the stretchers, to be carried into the presence of the medical gentleman. To the delight of the spectators, the wounded subjects, who, by the way, smiled throughout the operations, speedily returned from the hospital, completely cured, and with happy faces.

NEWS OF THE DAYThe Commonwealth military authorities have decided that in future every man serving at the front shall have two identity discs allotted him, instead of the one usually carried. The discs will be coloured red and green respectively.

HORSES FOR THE ARMYGreat as is the use of mechanical tractors in the military operations of today there is still an enormous demand for horses for war purposes. The Defence Department of the Commonwealth has been compelled to send a great number with the troops, and it is felt that something should be done to place the supply of horses for the department on a better footing than it is at present. With that view the department convened a conference of men used to the breeding of horses, and much good is likely to come of their deliberations. The n horse has proved to be sound and hardy in military service. The Government of India for many years relied on the ‘Walers’,as they were called, and they gave the utmost satisfaction. The fact that they are not so largely availed of at present is not due to any depreciation in the official estimate of their value for military purposes. The cost and difficulties of transport increased, and the Government of India turned to the breeding of horses for the army. The Indian-bred horse is much softer than the n, the extreme hardiness of which was proved during the South African campaign. The outcome of the conference which took place in Melbourne last week will no doubt be the establishment of a stud farm in connection with the Defence Department. There is no reason why the Government should not breed a large percentage of the horses required, but it would not do to choke off private breeding. In fact every encouragement should be given to the men on the land to breed the type of horse required for the army. To do that, it would be a good idea if approved stallions were sent into some districts and their use by breeders encouraged, the Government to have the first call on the progeny at a certain age.

CURRENT NEWSSome short time ago the defence authorities prohibited the sale of shotgun cartridges except under the most restricted conditions. Newcastle business people have been informed this week that the restrictions have been removed, and the trade in these cartridges may now be carried on under normal conditions.

AN AUSTRALIAN ATTACKFrom Captain C. E. W. Bean, Official n Press Correspondent, British Headquarters, France. On the morning of November 5 an n force attacked the German trenches on one of the lower knuckles of the main ridge beyond Flers, down which the battle has been proceeding for the last six weeks. The line went over in the middle of the morning. They went very steadily at a marching pace. The men seemed to be looking at their feet most of the time, picking their way amongst the muddy shell holes. Ahead of them the valley was a perfect cauldron of black, white, and brown shell bursts. But beyond this again the sun was shining on far green slopes, leading up towards the Bapaume clock tower. All the while during the battle one could see the Germans in twos and threes strolling down and across the country in the rear of their lines, exactly as our men strolled about their hinterland. German shells soon began to fall behind the attacking line. The conditions were difficult owing to the recent rains, but for three hours they held the German trench. About midday our troops were counter-attacked from the valley. After fierce bomb fighting our men were driven out.

AUSTRALIAN PRISONERSThe Red Cross Society in London are sending regular consignments of food and clothing to all ns who are ascertained to be POWs in Germany, and from letters received it is obvious that the supplies of food and clothing from the Red Cross Society are keeping the men in comfort. Letters to an n who is a prisoner of war in Germany should be addressed c/o. n Red Cross Commissioners, London and they will be readdressed to whatever part of Germany the man is in. The letters should be very short, and, if possible, typewritten; and great care should be exercised to see that there is nothing in any letter which has any reference to the war.Neither newspapers nor cuttings from newspapers should be sent to a man who is a prisoner of war. Money to a prisoner of war in Germany can be sent through the Commonwealth Bank.

Enlistments for the weekFrederick Norman Adair, Merewether; Clarence John Bambach, Raymond Terrace; Sydney Lester Barton, Aberdeen; Alexander Melville Begbie, Plattsburg; Harry Bird, Scone; Edward Cain, Charlestown; William Archibald Caldwell, Merewether; Richard Balfour Carter, Tighes Hill; Bruce Girling Clark, Muswellbrook; John Cecil Clulow, West Maitland; Stanley Cobb, Belltrees; John Court, Dartmouth; William Edward Delore, Stockton; Paul Francis Dufferin, Newcastle; John Charles Elliott, Newcastle; Gordon Eveleigh, Bulga; Henry Wynstanley Fletcher, Scone; Alfred Gibb, Merewether;

Wallace John Secundus Gillies, West Maitland; Archibald Gray, New Lambton; Sidney Hafey, Killingworth; Arthur James Hancock, Dungog; John Shepherd Hauser, Scotts Flat; Francis Joseph Healey, Cooks Hill; Thomas Joseph Healey, Wickham; Archibald Francis Hill, Aberdeen; Harold Johnson, Scone; James Kelly, Cessnock; Aubrey Leonard Kidd, Campbells Hill; John Langan, Pelaw Main; Paul Henry Loughman, Aberdeen; Cecil Ernest Madden, Singleton; Leslie Milton Manners, Lorn; John Edwin Marshall, Aberdeen; Charles McDonald, South Cessnock; John McGowan, Rutherford; Ernest McIntosh, Abermain; Douglas George Morgan, Newcastle; Claude Muddle, Stroud; Raymond Victor Murray, Singleton; Francis Sydney O’Brien, Waratah; Augustus Patrick O’Donohue, Branxton; Thomas Oswald, Kurri Kurri; Alfred Mark Perry, Homeville; Norman Phillips, Merriwa; Charles William Potter, Stanford Merthyr; Benjamin William Price, Hebburn; Timothy James Quinn, Scone; William Vincent Quinn, Scone; Charles Readman, Rutherford; Thomas Reginald Regan, Wickham; Alfred Richards, Bulahdelah; Edward Ridley, Wallsend; Herbert William Roberts, Raymond Terrace; Richard George Roberts, Raymond Terrace; Mervyn Esbert Robson, Gundy; Albert Edward, Roels, Hinton; William Russell, Cessnock; James Sager, Singleton; Thomas Shakespeare, Neath; George Smith, Kurri Kurri; Robert Smith, Merewether; Alexander Southard, Fordwich; Allan Gordon Spark, Hamilton; William Phillip Sullivan, Hamilton; Samuel Joseph Tanner, Scone; Matthew Taylor, Hamilton; Edward Gerald Thomas, Merriwa; Ralph Turvey, Mayfield; Henry Thomas Walden, Newcastle; William Ernest Walker, Newcastle; Alexander White Weir, Cessnock; William John White, Wickham; Andrew Wilkie, Wards River; Charles Henry Williams, Newcastle; Ernest Watkins Williams, Hamilton; Archibald Penman Wilson, Stockton; Herbert Wilson, Maryville; John Wisbey, Merewether; Charles Frederick Worrad, Scone.

Deaths for the weekPte Alexander Crabb Stott, Wickham; Pte William Sutcliffe, Broadmeadow; Pte Stanley Victor Bramble, Forster; Pte Holger Leidirg Sorensen, Branxton; Pte John Miller Trueland, Argenton;Pte Oskar Neilsen Englestad, Telarah; Pte David Francis Lonergan, Wallsend; Pte Charles James Cartwright, East Greta; Pte John Henderson, West Wallsend; Pte Walter Matthew Keevers, Scone; Cpl Sidney Thomas Ratcliffe, West Maitland.

David Dial OAM is a Hunter Valley-based military historian. Follow his research at facebook成都夜总会招聘/HunterValleyMilitaryHistory

Letters to the Editor: Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Written By: admin - Jun• 13•19

QUESTIONS: Reports paramedics had to treat 100 people at the This That Festival in Newcastle on the weekend have renewed calls for action on drug use. Picture: Marina Neil
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FOR all my 60 odd years drugs, other than alcohol and tobacco, have been illegal. Still, as a recent editorial points out (‘Arrests and overdoses with party drugs’, Herald,8/11), illicit drug use remains present in our society.

All the police actions, Howard’s “War on Drugs”, advertising warning kids about the dangers of drug use/abuse, school educational material have made some impact, yet the issue of illicit drug use goes on.

Young kids at a big music event are now using “synthetic” drugs – often bought online – so no drug dealer available to arrest.

These new drugs seem to be causing more overdoses than the old ones with “more than 100 people … treated by paramedics” (‘Drug arrests, overdoses at This That Festival’, Herald, 8/11). That’s 1:120. Considering maybe half had not taken drugs – that is 1:60. Clearly drug use is getting more dangerous.

The editorial mentioned above says that “just saying no” is no answer. I say that only regulation can ensure that kids party safely.

For 20 years Drug Safe has tried to provide drug testing at venues so that kids can find out what drugs they are taking. It makes sense to allow drug testing at least.

Scott Bell-Ellercamp, Clarence TownThanks to fire crewsI WAS one of the people caught in the fires in Karuah.

I wish to give a big thank you to all the crews on the ground and in the air that fought and contained the fires in the area around this town.

Also a special mention to the people and staff at Karuah RSL who went out their way to help all the people who were in need of assistance in this time of need.

A special thank you to the Eagle Rock dance group for their concern for us also.

Raymond O’Grady,Marks PointWho’s buying apartmentsTHE majority of the tower apartments proposed for inner Newcastle will most likely, as in our capital cities, be purchased by foreign investors and overseas students or their guardians particularly given proximity to the new campus. Also retirees downsizing to capitalise on skyrocketing house prices, in order to have sufficient super or to give their kids a leg up.

The towers might well be built by foreign developers. What of the next generation? Will the developers be forced to build any affordable family-sized apartments?

Foreign investment should be restricted to creating new industry and long-term jobs not a real estate boom dependent on immigration.

Janet Adler, NewcastleOlsen’s forgotten pieceJOHN Olsen, The City’s Sonat Newcastle Art Gallery is excellent and a must-see exhibition. However, the centrepiece work, King sun and the Hunteris not the first publicly-owned work Olsen has produced for Newcastle. Oddly, it doesn’t appear in the exhibition literature. Perhaps that happens when council uses a razor gang to decimate staff and with it, corporate memory.

In 1980, Suters Architects commissioned Olsen to produce a work for the major refurbishment of City Hall that was completed in 1981.

It’s a large and major work called Climbing sun over the Hunter. It hangs where the 1929 ticket office used to be on the first floor at the top of the main staircase at the King Street entrance.

The work is meant to be revealed gradually as people climb the staircase. Exhibition visitors should cross Civic Park to view it and compare the two works.

Keith Parsons,NewcastleRiding the rickshawI HAVE a solution to the transport dilemma we face following the removal of our heavy rail line from Wickham to the top of town – rickshaws. No I am not kidding, I am serious.

Think about it. In Asian cities rickshaws transport many thousands of people each day, very cheaply and efficiently.

We could have a loop of rickshaws running continuously along the previous railway corridor. There would be no waiting for a bus or light rail, they could be made to carry say, two passengers and their baggage, prams, wheelchairs, bikes and surfboards.

This would provide an income for our unemployed youth and university students from the new campus. They would only take up a three metre-wide strip of land (for two way traffic) and would be quiet and non-polluting.

The 2.7km pathway could be covered to make it all-weather.

It would only take about 10 minutes to traverse (including loading and unloading time), which is about the same as the trains used to take. The route could even be extended to Nobbys. I think it would become an attraction to our city.

Robert Gibson, CharlestownGrowing tiny townsI WONDER what will happen to asylum seekers now that they’re faced with a lifetime ban from entering . Other countries in our region are reluctant to take them. Permanent detention centre placement for the rest of their lives seems like a harsh, even odd solution for people who believed they would call home. If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem, so let’s think about this idea.

Every year migrants flood into our big cities adding to congestion. Maybe, these detention centre folk could be spread across our dying rural communities. They’d be very grateful to get a chance to ‘prove’ themselves. Strict conditions would apply but our shrinking, tiny towns might welcome young families and some new blood.

John Butler,Windella DownsNew start in Oval OfficeDAY 1, The Oval Office.

MrPresident I’m here for the briefing.Thank you, James. You did a great job with the FBI. So I’m going to give you a raise. Now, what are you doing about jailing Hillary?

Nothing we can do, MrPresident.

You’re fired.

Alternate Day 1, The Oval office.

Madam President I’m here for the briefing.

Thank you, James. You did a great job with the FBI. I’m going to give you a raise. Now, I’m creating a new department that needs you as its director. You will implement new gun control laws. You will have your own office, in Dallas, and you will have staff to assist you as soon as the budget allows.

Allan Milgate, Valentine

Port Macquarie couple announce new arrival to son on cameraVideo

Written By: admin - Jun• 13•19

Unique surprise: Jordy Beeckmans and Kathleen Luyckx took a unique approach when announcing to son Seppe that he would be a big brother.
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PortMacquarie couple Jordy Beeckmans and Kathleen Luyckx took a unique approach when announcing to son Seppe that he would be a big brother.

The 10-year-old found out by way of a sand drawing at Lighthouse Beach – and it was all captured on camera for their family back home.

His reaction was priceless, instantly overwhelmed with joy as he cried and hugged his parents.

Jordy, Kathleen and Seppe relocated from Belgium three years ago and decided to rely on technology to keep them in touch with their family.

They often film their days out in Port Macquarie, uploading clips to YouTube for their family back home. Their latest video is by far their most popular.

“We wanted to announce it in an original and personal way, but it was mainly for our family to see,” Kathleen said.

“It was a great way to announce it to Seppe and it’s also a great memory for us to keep.”

They already know the sex of the baby, with Seppe to have a little brother to care for mid-way through 2017.

“I was so happy I was crying. I think I’ll probably be a good big brother,” he said.

“I’ve always wanted a little brother because I can’t really play with some of my toys, because you need two people.

“Soccer will be good to play and I have a lot of nerf guns but I can’t play with them by myself.”

And how about those smelly nappies, Seppe?

“I won’t be changing any dirty nappies, that’s not my job,” he said.

Jordy is no stranger to media attention, with sister Ruth Beeckmans one of Belgium’s most famous actresses.

It is why their announcement went viral back in their native country.

“It’s easier to put things on YouTube instead of sending an e-mail. When we filmed it I didn’t think it would get so much publicity,” he said.

“This video is a great example of how easy it is with technology these days, just to keep in touch with people for immediate contact.”

Kathleen said they have settled in to the Aussie lifestyle well, happy to call Port Macquarie home. The new baby is due in April.

Cranebrook residents describe terrifying fire ordeal

Written By: admin - Jun• 13•19

SCORCHED: A sign at Vincent Road that was left scorched by the fire in Wianamatta Nature Reserve. It is just across the road from homes.Vincent Road residents have described running from the fire that burnt out bushland in Cranebrook and Llandilo on Friday.
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Adam, who lives across from the Wianamatta Nature Reserve on Vincent Road, was sitting inside hishouse when he heard what sounded like “a flame thrower”.

“I walked out the front and the flames were as high as the trees,” he told the Gazette. “I tried to get to my car [parked at the bottom of the driveway] and it was just way too hot. The police came up the road and were just going, “Go! Go!”

“We had to do the bolt. I was just in my thongs and was running up the road.

“I’ve never seen anything like it. As I ran to the Northern Road and I looked back -I could see the fire jump the road and go over to Llandilo, it was just that big and quick – I thought the car was gone.I thought it was going to come over to the house.”

AT WORK: Fire crews at work in Cranebrook as the fire burns at Llandilo on Friday. Picture: TNV.

Wife Rina was at work and had no idea what was going on. Luckily, the couple’s two young children were not at home at the time.

“Our neighbours couldn’t get out. They said by the time they noticed [the fire] and then went back inside to get their kids, they couldn’t get out because of the flames and smoke,” she said.

“I left work straight away to come and get [Adam]because I knew he would be stranded out on the road. By the time I got home …they were able to get back into the street.”

Ann, another Vincent Road resident, was at work when she heard news of the fire.

SPOT FIRES: Embers from the blaze caused spot fires near homes along Vincent Road, like the one caused near this side fence.

“They came and said, ‘there’s a fire at Cranebrook, they’re evacuating Vincent Road’, and I said, ‘that’s where I live’,” she said. “I just wasn’t allowed in [by the time I got to Cranebrook].

“I just can’t believe it. You see it all the time in different places, but when it happens to you, you realise ‘gee, it’s pretty bad’.”

Adam and Rina are currently renovating their home, and Adam arrived back to find his neighbours dousing a fire that had started in a skip bin in their front yard.

While the couple’s car sustained some heat damage and plants in the garden have been scorched by the heat, the house was undamaged. However, embers burned through some plastic structures on the neighbour’s house, damaging a day bed in the children’s play area.

Residents extended their thanks to firefighters and the police for their quick action.

“We can’t thank the fire brigade and the police enough for helping everybody get out and for putting out the fire,” Adam said. “As I was running up the street I couldn’t count how many fire trucks were trying to save our houses.”

“It’s what emergency services do. They run in the direction of the danger while everybody else is running away,” Rina added.

NewRide app wins HunterNet Future Leaders program l video

Written By: admin - Jun• 13•19

On pace: NewRide strategists Dr Andrew Mears, left, Jamie Woods, Leah Aldridge, Rebecca Johnston and Robert Winbank. Picture: Penelope GreenTHURSDAYnight in Newcastle and you’re thinking about going out.
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You tap into local app NewRideand a swag of “real time” discounts and promotions from local restaurants and bars appear on your smart phone screen.

You share the ones that interest you with connected friends, confirm a meeting place and pinpoint the next bus to your destination.

Leaping on the bus, you swipe your Opal card, which activates your NewRide experience, and travel into the city to your preferred destination, passing a few hours before you swipe your QR code as you leave toget a cash discount.

NewRide may not yet exist, but it’s the winning idea of Team Obelisk in HunterNet’s 2016 Future Leaders Program, which offers comprehensive mentoring to young business leaders before challenging them to solve a regional problem.

This year’s theme was The Hunter Can Get Smart About Transport–and Team Obelisk comprised Ian Stevenson (BMTWTM), Jamie Woods (TW Woods Construction), Leah Aldridge (ARTC), Rebecca Johnston (Port of Newcastle), Robert Winbank (Northrop) and Troy Fisher (Kings Engineering), with their mentor Dr Andrew Mears (CEO, SwitchDin). The judging panel included Anna Zycki (RMS coordinator general transport for Newcastle) and Wayne Johnson (General Manager Operations Hunter Valley, ARTC).

Team Obelisk, 2016 HunterNet Future Leaders Program Team Obelisk researchedpublic transport schemes places includingSeattle and Melbourne, where authorities used tax and other incentives to woo more people to use public transport.

NewRide’s customers are local hospitality businesses who use the app to target consumers with promotions, and can subscribe to receive valuable data to assist their marketing. The hospitality discounts are available to only to public transport users.

Ms Johnston said NewRide leveragedthe NSW government’s new transport system, offering connectivity and environmental benefits.

“It’s about getting bums on seats, with the current system people say that it’s infrequent, inconvenient and not a pleasant experience,” she said.

Letters to the Editor: Thursday, November 10, 2016

Written By: admin - Jun• 13•19

‘FRIGHTENING’: The election result out of the United States has lead to calls from some for to re-evaluate its global priorities, and its relationship with America.
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AMERICA has been a long standing country of power and, for some, admiration.

Today, I feel is the turn for such sentiments.

We have witnessed the most horrendous political display in modern years following the Cold War.

Why has this occurred? Racism has been propagated thanks to 9/11. America has pushed the button too many times.

Secondly, the education system in America has long been criticised due to its insular history syllabus.

Thirdly, some Americans, I think, seem to think its OK to be racist, sexist, mysoginist, and stupid for the sake of change.

What a frightening nation that is surely demonstrating why we and the rest of the world need to re-focus where global importance lies.

Therese Davies, The HillAct ‘stopping’ free speechAFTER the recent vilification of a cartoonist for drawing a politically incorrect cartoon, I think that it is plainly clear that the Racial Discrimination Act (18C) is totally flawed.

Instead of acting, our weak government has decided to call an expensive inquiry to tell them what the average person already knows, the act is stopping free speech.

Our brilliant politicians should hold the inquiry at a local pub, they would get the right answer in less than half an hour.

Jim Gardiner,New LambtonSecuring a solutionTWO interesting articles popped up in the Newcastle Herald(‘Alarms not working on broadband’ and the follow up editorial piece ‘Compatibility and the broadband network’ (Herald, 9/11).

These articles highlight issues that, I believe,have beenknown by the key players (NBN Co, Telstra and the security industry) for a number of years.

I believe that when you apply for an NBN connection you are asked about security systems and medical alerts.

If you answer in the affirmative then you are directed to contact your provider of these services for a solution.

I understand that it is made clear that NBN/Telstra are not interested even though it is their technology causing the problems.

It is not as if low speed analogue signals are difficult to digitise and then transport over the NBN if the will was there, however it is a distraction from the main game (selling capacity together with the “promise” of speed) which the average residential user will only ever use for movies.

As someone who has worked 25 years with Telstra and 20 years in the electronic security field I wish to encourage people to shop around for a solution.

As the article states, the accepted solution is to move to the GSM network, however there can be a huge variation in cost.

Some security providers seek to profit from the situation while others offer it at minimal cost as a service to their clients.

Ross Craney, Elemore ValeConcerning rhetoricMOST people don’t know that gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex (GLBTI) youth are four times more likely to suicide than their heterosexual peers.

The comments by some letter writers, such as Tom Edwards(Short Takes, 2/11), are very concerning.

It’s public comments like his that our youth read, and in turn, they fear that they aren’t accepted within the community as they struggle with coming to terms of their own sexuality.

This is a prime example why the GLBTI community didn’t want a plebiscite – the bullying and harassment is just wrong.

Greg Fogarty, NewcastleAmendment worriesLAKE Macquarie City Council (LMCC) will debate and vote on a Monday, November 14, on a proposal to amend their LEP 2014. The proposal can be found on the LMCC website under item 4 of the meeting agenda.

I think this proposal has the potential to set a very dangerous precedent for Lake Macquarie residents.

I understand it will give the council the ability to approve, with consent, the development of public infrastructure on land currently zoned as urban within the city.

I understand the council has delegated authority from the Minister for Planning to change the application tables within the LEP over nine urban zones including R2 general residential.

It is my understanding that this would allow the construction of, as an example, a private sewer plant within any residential zone in the city.

Some Cooranbong residents have found that resisting such a private sewer plant adjacent to residential homes has proven an impossibility.

Peter (surname provided), CooranbongHigher price, buy lessIF Trump axes all free trade agreements and raises tariffs does this mean we we will do the same? And re-open the GMH and Ford manufacturing plants, including other out-priced manufacturers?

Prices won’t be less, maybe more, but do families really need two to three cars per household?

When people needed more money to buy cars, televisions, clothing etc and only purchased what was needed they were certainly happier and jobs were more secure.

I believe we have been living in a bubble, at the expense of jobs, due to cheap imports.

If the bubble bursts in the USA, l,can see the same happening here. Maybe top heavy companies and bank executive salaries will come down to earth in the final wash. Maybeinteresting times ahead.

Carl Stevenson, Dora CreekNeed for reflectionAT the time of writing it was still unclear who would be the next USA president, but somethings were very clear.

One is that the politicians of the world have got to change their ideology of “business as usual” and start acting in the interest of all people under their control. Just as the workers of the world dragged themselves out of the slums and into middle class prosperity through the industrial age the high rollers and big business then came along and thrust us into free trade and globalisation with no thought of the consequences.

America is now facing the consequences of that with Trump being president of the number one bully of the free world.

Allan Earl, Thornton

Opinion: Would you mind paying $5 to go to the beach?

Written By: admin - Jun• 13•19

The Crown Lands Management Bill 2016, debated in State Parliament this week, represents the greatest change to Crown Land management in more than 120 years. But, until two weeks ago, the NSW Government was the only one that knew its contents.
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Like tax law, Crown lands legislation is probably something most of us try to avoid: apparently dry and of limited relevance. But as private recreation facilities become more expensive, our beaches and foreshores, parks, sports grounds and budget holiday parks on Crown land are some of the last remaining free or low-cost activities for families. And yet the Bill flies in the face of one of the main principles that saw King Edward Headland Reserve returned to public use in 2014: Crown land is to be openly commercialised, and fees can be charged for entry.

Under the bill much of our Crown land will be transferred to councils and then, rather than requiring the consent of both houses of Parliament before it can be sold, the land can be operationalised and sold under the Local Government Act (NSW) with hardly any fanfare.

The objects of the bill expressly reflect this move towards use and sale rather than “management” for the benefit of the people of NSW: gone is governance under stated Crown land management principles over choices about suitable and preferred uses, the granting of leases, licences, easements, permits or rights of way, adoptions of Plans of Management over Crown land, or the authorisation of additional purposes on Crown land. These appropriately stirring ideals of protection and conservation of the natural resources of Crown land, public use and enjoyment, sustenance of resources in perpetuity, and dealing with land in the best interests of the State are replaced by limp reference to undefined “environmental, social, cultural, heritage and economic considerations”, to be applied only in decision making generally. And rather than having to be “compatible” with the declared purpose of a reserve, an additional purposes need only not “materially harm” that purpose, as assessed using a long list of micro-criteria that ignore the overall purpose of public land for public enjoyment.

Behind this approach lies the full spectre of the Government’s privatisation agenda: the bill turns the NSW Crown Lands Division into a Public Trading Enterprise, with “economic objectives” and goals for how much Crown land is to be disposed of each year. If all of the measures in the White Paper are implemented, the Division will need to be “budget neutral”, and any shortfall in expenses for its use and management met by a “Community Service Obligation” imposed on users for any difference between “market rent” and actual rent paid. Crown land will be priced according to its commercial freehold value, and any shortfall between that and the income it generates noted as an “opportunity cost”.

The whole Crown estate is being converted into a balance sheet.

The large African mammal in the room here is that the NSW Government is not, and does not want to, take money from elsewhere (Sydney Exhibition Centre and Westconnex 1 and 2 top the Government’s 2017 budget projections) to maintain these public lands. These lands are public lands. The bill should be deferred for proper public consultation and its clauses changed until it is worthy of that fact.

Jacquie Svenson is a solicitor and clinical teacher at Newcastle Law School. She was solicitor for the community group in the 2014 Newcastle Bowling Club case OMINOUS: Would you mind paying a fee to go to the beach? Picture: Ryan Osland

The Lambton worm is a famous tale from the Middle Ages

Written By: admin - May• 13•19

Namesake: The Lambton Arms Hotel in County Durham in England.
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As many peopleknow, there’s quite a few places in Newcastle that took their names from the Old Dart.

These include Newcastle, Jesmond, Wallsend, Morpeth, Rothbury, Stockton, Gateshead and Seaham.

Lambton is another one. It’s a village in north-east England, linked through history to the Lambton family.Lambton Castle is quite famous.

Newcastle’s Suzanne Martin visited the area, which includeda stayat the very English-looking Lambton Arms Hotel.

When Thomas Croudace came to Newcastle to open a coalmine in the 1860s, he called it Lambton Colliery because he hadworked forLord Lambton, Earl of Durham, while in England.

Suzanne, a history buff,said Croudace hailedfrom County Durham. This areais also home to the legend of the Lambton worm. The story comes from the time of the Crusades.

The hero of the tale was John Lambton – the heir to the Lambton family estate. Lambton liked fishing in the River Wear on a Sunday, despite the fact a person of his standing was expected to be in church.

One Sunday, he couldn’t catch a fish. He became angry. He soon felt a tug on his line, which turned out to be a worm. Hethrew the worm in a nearby well. Soon after, he left to fight in the Crusades.

The worm grew larger and its appetite increased. It began to terrorise the neighbourhood, killing peasants’ livestock.

Locals pacified it by feeding it milk fromnine cows. If the wormdid not receive enough milk, it would lash its tail and tear up trees by the root. Knights died while trying to destroy it.

The Lambton worm song. Seven years later, Lambton returned home. He resolved to kill the worm, which had become a giant beast.

After several failed attempts, he sought advice from a witch. She told him to make a suit of armour with steel blades.

In return for her help, the witch insisted that –after killing the worm – he must sacrifice the first living thing he sawor his family would be cursed for nine generations.

Lambton attacked the worm, hittingit on the head. The worm wrapped itself around him and tried to squeeze him to death.

The harder it squeezed, the more cuts it suffered from the armour’s blades. It weakened, enablingLambton to kill it.

Lambton had told his elderly father, Lord Lambton, that he would sound the bugle after killing the worm. This was a signal for his fatherto release a hound to be sacrificed.

His father was so excited, he forgotto release the hound. He rantowards his son, becoming the first living thing Lambton sawafter the worm’s death.

Lambton couldn’t bring himself to kill his father, so the witch placeda curse on the Lambtons for nine generations. It’s said that many Lambtons subsequently died in tragic circumstances.

Meanwhile, the lord of the areatoday is Edward Lambton, the seventh Earl of Durham. Heinherited his father’s£35millionestatein 2006.

Yabby Nips Nipple Benny Parmenter in New Orleans with a yabby on his nipple.

Topics reported on Mondaythat a yabby bit James Macdonald on the nipple, after it won a yabby race at The Edwards Bar in Newcastle on Melbourne Cup Day. The yabby, which was relatively small, won him about $2000.

Belmont North’s Benny Parmenter can top this story.

“I was in New Orleans partying with friends after a wedding in Vegas and we went to a bar where they cook them [yabbies] up and you eat them while you drink.

“Idared the guy to find the biggest one and put it on my nipple.”

Clothing DilemmaTopics reported yesterday about adocumentary,titledThe True Cost,to be shown at Newcastle Museum on Thursday.

It’s about the cheap labour used to make cheap clothes in Third World countries. This subject led some to suggest that peopleshouldbuy second-hand and vintage clothes instead of cheap clothing.

Wallsend’s Kath Goddardtold Topics“there has to be a limit”.

“Ifthis behavior (buying from op-shops etc) were to become widespread, a shortage of acceptable items must result,” Kath says.

“And, more importantly, the Third World workers of concern would change from low-paidto no-paid. How isthat helping?”

PALS back with new single Stay//Leave

Written By: admin - May• 13•19

GUITAR HEROES: PALS launch their new single Stay//Leave at the Lass O’Gowrie on Sunday. Picture: Josh LeesonPALS are a band that loudly and proudly wear their influences like a badge of honour.
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The Newcastle four-piece’s interpretation of grunge andearly n punk has guaranteed their reputation as one of the underground scene’s most exciting live acts.

PALS have supported The Gooch Palms and toured the east coast with local favourites dave and are preparing to fire up the distortion once again on Sunday when theylaunch their new single Stay//Leave at the Lass O’Gowrie. It is the first track off their forthcoming debut album, slated for release in January.

“We’re pretty happy with all the shows we’ve been getting and we’ve gotten some good supports like Gooch Palms,” PALS vocalist and guitarist Conor Kelly said.“We just want to improve on that and hopefully be one of the bands people want to play with when they come to Newcastle.”

PALS joined Newcastle’s No-Fi Records last year and have released an EP, Spring, and a split with fellow stablemates Wavevom. With the growing profile of Novocastrian bands like RAAVE TAPES, dave and Paper Thin, Kelly is hopeful guitar music is making a resurgence in popularity.

“I’m seeing that from playing around Newcastle and seeing people coming to watch bands play, instead of going to King Street and the nightclubs,” he said.“In my opinion watching bands is so much more fun than going to a nightclub and not even beingable to talk to someone because the terrible music is so loud.”

Stay//Leave will be uploaded to Triple J Unearthed this week and is the first PALS recording with new guitarist Luke Dillon.He replaced Matt Bruce, who moved overseas.

STEELE RETURNSWHATEVER happened to Katy Steele? It’s a question that’s been bandied around music circles in recent years.

COUP: Katy Steele will perform at 48 Watt Street on February 26.

Well, the indie songstress behind successful band Little Birdy has finally returned with her debut solo album Human. It comes seven years, and an unsuccessful stint living in New York,after Little Birdy’s third and final album Confetti.

In their mid-2000s prime Little Birdy were regular visitors to Newcastle and the Perth-bred Steele will return to town on February 26 to play48 Watt Street.

JULIO CANCELSLIKE a knife to our collective heart, global Latino superstar Julio Iglesias this week cancelled his Newcastle Entertainment Centre showscheduled for December 6.

The 73-year-old crooner was set to perform at the Broadmeadow venue for the first time since 2004 as part of his greatest hits tour of , which also includes dates in Melbourne, Sydney and on the Gold Coast. The Newcastle show wasthe only concertcancelled.

Promoters denied poor tickets sales were to blame, instead citing Iglesias’ need to leave a “day earlier.”Prices ranged from $99 to $255.85 for the concert, which was promoted as an “intimate” performance.

Refunds are available from the point of purchase.

HOOP DREAMS COURT SIDE: William Crighton performing at the NBL game between Sydney Kings and Cairns Taipans on Monday. Picture: Facebook

WILLIAM Crighton is definitely tall enough to be a basketballer. The Bellbird country-rock troubadour got close to living out his hoop dreams on Monday night when he performed his song Priest at the NBL game between the Sydney Kings and Cairns Taipans at Olympic Park.

“I haven’t watched a basketball game since the Tumut Stadium days, think I’m better on the court with a uke than a ball – those who used to play with me would agree,” Crighton wrote on social media.

HOUSE REBUILTAFTER some minor renovations, Maitland Leagues Club is planning a street party launch on January 13 to welcome the return of its House Of Rock.

The House Of Rock closed six months ago after a six-week program, but with new funding the live music initiative, headed by local musician Simon Threadgate, is returning. The House Of Rock will be open every second Friday to showcase live and original rock music.

Maitland Leagues Club has also secured Newcastle country music star Michael Edser, better known as Grayson, for a show on January 7. In September the Nashville-based musician scored No.1 spot on theUSNew Music Weekly Country Charts for his track10-9-8-7.

LIZOTTE’S BREAKIF you walked or drove down Morehead Street, Lambton over the weekend you would have noticed it was decidedly quiet at Lizotte’s. The theatre restaurant closed its doors for the entire weekend for the first time outside of Christmas due to working at Live At The Foreshore.

“We have Jimmy Barnes on Monday, which is like having a Saturday night, so we more than made up for the loss,” owner Brian Lizotte said.