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Junior Rams flying Muswellbrook flag

THE Muswellbrook Rams under-18s will fly the local flag for the club in this weekend’s Hunter Valley Group 21 grand finals.
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While the organisation’s other grades have all bowed out of the premiership race, the young guns face off against the Denman Devils at Greta Central Oval on Sunday.

But, they’ll have their work cut out for them.

“Denman has been the form side all year,” Rams’ co-coach Steve Haylen said.

“We’re definitely going into the match as the underdogs.

“The Devils beat us in the major semi a fortnight ago, but we knocked over the Singleton Greyhounds last weekend.

“That was a great effort by the boys.

“They played some gritty league and didn’t give up, which pleased myself and fellow coach Matt Durham.”

Despite the previous results between the two clubs in 2014, Haylen said Sunday’s encounter was anyone’s for the taking.

“We know what to expect from Denman; they’re pretty strong in the forwards,” he told the Chronicle.

“Our guys need to keep it simple, cut back on mistakes and work to our strengths.

“We’ll be concentrating on our game, not the Devils.

“If the guys play to the best of their ability, I think we’ve got the side to win it.”

The under-18 match kicks off at 10.25am.

In reserve grade (1.10pm) and women’s league tag (11.55am), the Scone Thoroughbreds face the Singleton Greyhounds in both fixtures.

LOCAL HOPES: The Muswellbrook Rams under-18 squad, back from left, Michael Upton (manager), Jacob Connor, Steve Haylen (coach), Sam Heriot, Rohan Pottinger, Mitch Taylor, Brady Benkovic, Andrew Pritchard, Jacob Kennedy, Jayden Sampson, Noa Durham, Seaton Graham, Matt Durham (coach), Gus Mather (trainer); and, front from left, Nathaniel Hoffman, Mark Glew, Shelby Stevens, Ryan Holman, Beau Dixon, Ryan Symington, James Collins, Jackson Anshaw, Curtis Farrell, Kyle Robertson and Gary Jones (trainer).

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Design for small spaces

Design for small spaces Ligne Roset’s Ploum sofa, designed by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec.
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Designer Nick Rennie will exhibit at Living Large In Small Spaces.

Ligne Roset’s Serpertine chair, designed by Eléonore Nalet.

The Ruché bed, designed by Inga Sempé and part of the Ligne Roset product range.

Nick Rennie’s CHART rug in blue, part of the Ligne Roset range available from DOMO.

Interior designer Hamish Guthrie.

TweetFacebookLiving It Large In Small Spaces exhibition, which is set to highlight the benefits of good design and a smaller space.

The exhibition will run for two weeks from September 5 at Allpress, within the urban precinct of Collingwood in Melbourne, and will feature products from the luxe French furniture brand Ligne Roset.

“It will demonstrate that every space within an apartment should have a central theme and be designed around specific activities,” DOMO founder Frank Novembre said. “After 30 years in furniture retailing, we’ve seen a shift in people’s lifestyle and living requirements and we recognise the need to provide pieces that cater for apartment living,” Novembre said.

“Fortunately, good design is recognised across the globe and brands such as Ligne Roset can often cut through cultural boundaries and break down traditional models of furnishing spaces.”

The exhibition will feature five distinct themed spaces: Eat, Live, Sleep, Work and Outdoor, with Ligne Roset products selected by interior designers Paul Hecker and Hamish Guthrie from Hecker Guthrie.

Co-director Hamish Guthrie said the exhibition was aimed at encouraging people to re-think the way they “inhabit domestic space” by living in smaller spaces.

“Apartment living requires a slightly different mentality. You can’t live as you would in a four-bedroom house but there is no need to compromise – you should always be able to live in a space to create a successful environment,” Guthrie said.

Rennie has had several of his designs produced by Ligne Roset, including the Chart rug and Saldo table.

He said living and working in Australia had brought challenges with breaking into the European market.

“You have to constantly be talking to manufacturers, design houses and the like. I travel regularly because with the difference in time and distance you cannot be quick to change things if there is a problem with manufacturing or for them to regularly be in contact with you.”

Rennie’s Saldo glass-top coffee table was the first product made by Ligne Roset four years ago.

“It was a simplistic and minimalist design so it was quite an easy product to develop,” Rennie said. He added understanding the manufacturing process, budgeting and having a solid working knowledge of production techniques was important for designers to succeed, here and overseas.

“Australian designs are world class and the reality is that conceptually a handful of designers are starting to work with some of the best companies in the world, the hardest part is not the design, but having having access to the manufacturer and being selected by the manufacturer amongst mostly designers based in Europe and some of the biggest designer names in the world.”

Rennie said he overcomes the tyranny of distance and networking opportunities by ensuring he speaks viaphone, email or Skypewith international companies a few times a week to “build relationships”, as well as travel regularly.

“It is infinitely easier if you are based there (but) Ligne Roset has been fantastic (as) for them the whole focus has been on whether the product suits the range… it is a really nice company to be involved with.”

While good collaboration was key, Rennie said, to the success of a product suiting a range, being open to new ideas or reinterpreting creations in a modern context was equally important.

“In this day and age the real innovation comes through new materials and manufacturing,” he said. “We live in a world with diminishing resources so innovation comes from minimising the impact on this.”

Rennie said when choosing furnishings and decorating a space, whether small or large, it was also important for people not to compromise on style and functionality.

“In Australia the biggest problem designers face is the copy industry, so don’t compromise on the object you want nor compromise on the quality because at the end of the day you pay for what you get.

“If that table and chair suits your needs go and buy it – no one buys copy cars. At home, I have a mix of IKEA, as they make good quality, through to design classics. When decorating it’s about making the decision on what is important to you …to make the most of situations.”

Living It Large In Small Spaces will exhibitfrom September 5 to 19 September at Allpress at 80 Rupert Street, Collingwood. For more information visit domo南京夜网.au.

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Not end of line just yet

MUSWELLBROOK residents stood united alongside locals from Scone, Aberdeen and Denman at the Save Our Rail rally in Newcastle last week.
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And, while they joined forces from different parts of the Hunter, they all shared the same goal.

To protect the transport lifeline for everyone without a car or licence or who simply prefers to travel by train.

As of Boxing Day this year, Upper Hunter City Rail will stop at Wickham and Sydney services at Broadmeadow.

“There is much conjecture as to whether Upper Hunter trains will actually ever get closer to Newcastle than Broadmeadow,” Denman, Aberdeen, Muswellbrook Scone Healthy Environment Group’s Wendy Wales said.

“Given the recent ICAC controversy about property developer and Lord Mayor of Newcastle Jeff McCloy funding election campaigns for a number of Newcastle Liberal MPs, the rally protestors felt justified in calling a halt to the destruction of the inner city heavy rail service and replaced by a vague covered outdoor replacement shed-as-terminus and promised light rail – till at least after an election.

“Apart from the proximity of the rail line to the harbor and city centre, the land under the rail has never been underground mined and so is capable of supporting high rise buildings.

“It is not surprising developers would try to secure it.

“For us in the Upper Hunter, whether we get to Hamilton and then have to get to Broadmeadow to get to Sydney, or whether we get to Broadmeadow and then have to catch a bus to Newcastle, there is a clear signal that our journey is going to take longer and cost more.”

Ms Wales said she did not think the Wickham Transport Social Impact Assessment addressed the needs of the people in the region.

“Consultation went no further than Newcastle and Maitland,” she told the Chronicle.

“The Social Impact Assessment identifies those disproportionately affected as with limited mobility (aged and disabled), large items (such as bicycles, surfboards and luggage), or otherwise encumbered (including people travelling with young children).

“This adverse impact is multiplied for those of us travelling longer journeys from Scone, Dungog, the Central Coast and Sydney.

“Increasing travel time makes journeys ridiculously long for those travelling from the Upper Hunter to Sydney.

“At the moment it takes three minutes to get from Broadmeadow to Hamilton by staying on the train.

“When travellers need to take a bus from one to the other it is surely going to add at least 25 minutes to their travel time each way, assuming they make their connection.

“With an early start it has been possible for Upper Hunter residents to use the train to have four effective hours in Sydney – arrive at Central 11.10am and depart 3.15pm to make it back to Muswellbrook by 7.30pm.

“This has been a valuable service and saves the expense and inconvenience of an overnight stay.

“Additional shuttle time added to the inevitable uncertainty of whether the train will run to schedule will make this journey quite stressful for those who can’t find an alternative.

“Community organisations such as Two More Trains for Singleton have been calling for an improved service to the Upper Hunter because we need a better, not diminished, service.

“The train is a lifeline and independence for young and old in the Upper Hunter.

“It enables us to travel by one mode to the beach, university, Newcastle TAFE and the city and is a short distance from many medical facilities.

“I therefore urge the government to take this opportunity to rethink and work on well-planned improvement to our public transport system.”

You can find out more about the proposed change by contacting Upper Hunter MP George Souris, visiting the Save Our Rail website and lodging your concerns with [email protected] by midnight (tonight).

Use the Wickham Transport Interchange REF as the subject.

SAVE OUR RAIL: Denman, Aberdeen, Muswellbrook Scone Healthy Environment Group’s Wendy Wales (second from right) and Bev Atkinson (right), from Scone, drum up some support in Muswellbrook.

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Drug supply strike force makes arrest in Wellington

POLICE investigating drug supply in the Dubbo area have charged a man in Wellington.POLICE investigating drug supply in the Dubbo area have charged a man in Wellington.
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Detectives from Strike Force Salco arrested the 35-year-old at a Wellington residence on Wednesday.

He was taken to Wellington Police Station and charged with possess prohibited drug, supply prohibited drug on ongoing basis, knowingly deal with proceeds of crime, participate in criminal group and self administer prohibited drug.

The man was refused bail ahead of an appearance inDubbo Local Court.

Strike Force Salco, comprising detectives from Orana Local Area Command, was formed in March 2014 to investigate the alleged supply of methylamphetamines.

During investigations police allegedly identified a man dealing prohibited drugs on 28 separate occasions from premises in Hunter Street, Dubbo.

On July 22, 2014, the 35-year-old man was stopped by police and submitted to a search where he was allegedly found in possession of 18 deals of methylamphetamine and cash.

The drugs were seized and sent for scientific examination which confirmed they were methylamphetamines (Ice).

Detectives later conducted a search warrant at the Hunter Street premises where they allegedly located amounts of methylamphetamines and cash.

Two other people were arrested at the premises and charged with a number of drug offences. Their matters are now before the court.

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Pies progress as Pumas crash out in Mininera netball

WICKLIFFE/LAKE BOLAC has sent Moyston/Willaura crashing out of the 2014 Mininera and District Netball Association finals’ series.
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The Magpies only entered the top five in the final round of the home and away season, but were desperate for another win and this was evident as the players led strongly, took time with their passing and put the score on the board in the wet conditions.

While it appeared Wickliffe/Lake Bolac was playing the better brand of netball, the Pumas remained close on the scoreboard, with just one goal separating the teams at the first break.

The duel between Magpies’ shooter Amanda Clark and Moyston/Willaura’s Katy Jewell kept the crowd on their feet, with both tall players contesting the ball strongly and not holding back.

Clark was supported in the circle by sister Simone McDonald and together they made the most of their opportunities.

Wickliffe/Lake Bolac pushed out to a six goal lead at the main interval, while the third term was full of loose balls and plenty of turnovers with both defences working hard to restrict scoring opportunities.

Pumas’ Zanetta Hosking was relatively quiet in the first half, but lifted her work rate in the third quarter and each time she put the ball up it meant a score for her team.

Nothing separated the sides at the final break locked at 25 goals apiece although the Magpies came out with some renewed energy in the last quarter which allowed them to play some strong netball and go on to claim victory 38 to 31.

The C grade elimination final saw Tatyoon keep its season alive by downing Caramut 35 to 23.

Little separated the two teams at the first break, with the Hawks holding the slight advantage, with Heidi Astbury a steadying influence.

Astbury’s delivery of the ball was of a high quality, setting up numerous scoring chances which allowed Tatyoon to push out to a three goal lead at halftime.

The Hawks stuck to their game plan and continued to break away during the third term and while Caramut’s defenders tried everything to unsettle Tatyoon’s attack, the tactics were to no avail as the Hawks claimed victory and a pass into week two of finals.

In Saturday’s B grade qualifying final SM&W Rovers fell short to Glenthompson/Dunkeld in a low scoring affair.

Rovers’ defence, led by Stacey McKay, worked hard at contested balls consistently throughout the match, but weren’t rewarded for their efforts on the scoreboard as the Rams built a lead of 12 goals over three quarters.

The Bulldogs made a concentrated effort in the last quarter in what was probably their best for the day, but by that point the gap was too big to challenge and the team eventually went down 28 to 16.

Seasoned C grade finalists the Ararat Eagles set the pace and established an early lead in their qualifying final match against Lismore/Derrinallum.

With youngster Jordyn Leggett being a pivotal player in the goal circle for Ararat, the reigning premier was able to put 10 goals on the board for the quarter, while the Demons could only manage five.

The Eagles maintained that gap as the first half came to a close, however during the third term the Demons mixed their defence line up, with the changes having an immediate effect on the scoreboard.

Lismore/Derrinallum had reduced the margin to five by the final break and kept that momentum going.

The side again outscored the Eagles in the fourth, but were unable to get across the line as Ararat hung on 25 to 23.

It was a thriller in the 17 and under qualifying final between Wickliffe/Lake Bolac and Glenthompson/Dunkeld, with additional time required after the match ended in a draw.

The Magpies’ defensive end led the way during the contest, with Gabrielle Higgins and Annabelle Millear teaming well together.

With the scores locked at 28-all after normal time, teams took to their huddles before ‘time on’ as a sense of urgency spread over the court.

Wickliffe/Lake Bolac appeared a little more composed, but the Rams quickly answered with goals of their own.

The match looked headed for more extra time, before the Magpies scored the winning goal close to the final whistle to take the win 33 to 32.

Moyston/Willaura will fight to keep its season alive on Sunday following a loss to Tatyoon in last weekend’s 15 and under qualifying final.

Tatyoon player Sarah Phillips and Moyston Willaura’s Kiara Pitcher provided a great contest in the midcourt and were a driving force for their respective team over the course of the match.

The difference seemed to be the Hawks’ Ellie Dickins, who worked tirelessly around the court and was a strong contributor in the circle.

The two teams went goal-for-goal in the final quarter, with some careless errors creeping in as the tension heightened. Tatyoon regained control and was able to hang onto its one goal advantage at the final whistle to win 24 to 23.

Results

A grade

Qualifying final

Woorndoo-Mortlake 38 (J Cameron C Morgan) def Glenthompson-Dunkeld 33 (S Alderman L Pyke).

Elimination final

Moyston Willaura 31 (Z Hosking K Jewell) lost to Wickliffe Lake Bolac 38 (A Clark T Notting).

B grade

Qualifying final

SMW Rovers 16 (S McKay J Bartram) lost to Glenthompson-Dunkeld 28 (J Parker B Watts).

Elimination final

Hawkesdale Macarthur 34 (L Margrie K Habel) lost to Lismore Derrinallum 41 (B Mcphee M Henderson).

C grade

Qualifying final

Ararat 25 (J Leggett, L Harvey) def Lismore Derrinallum 22 (E Baker L Loader).

Elimination final

Tatyoon 35 (H Astbury T Reynolds) def Caramut 23 (K Hargreaves R Russell).

17 and under

Qualifying final

Glenthompson-Dunkeld 32 (J Beveridge S Ferguson) lost to Wickliffe Lake Bolac 33 (A Jackson K Jackson).

Elimination final

Penshurst 27 (L Rentsch R Mibus) def Hawkesdale Macarthur 19 (J Greenburger T Watson).

15 and under

Qualifying final

Moyston Willaura 23 (R Nailon-Williamson L Argall) lost to Tatyoon 24 (S Phillips A Astbury).

Elimination final

Penshurst 23 (A Huf A Boland) def Hawkesdale Macarthur 21 (C Edwards H Drendel).

This weekend’s matches

A grade

Second Semi – Lismore Derrinallum v Woorndoo Mortlake

First Semi – Glenthompson Dunkeld v Wickliffe Lake Bolac

B grade

Second semi – Woorndoo Mortlake v Glenthompson Dunkeld

First Semi – SMW Rovers v Lismore Derrinallum

C grade

Second Semi – Woorndoo Mortlake v Ararat

First Semi – Lismore Derrinallum v Tatyoon

17 and under

Second Semi – Tatyoon v Wickliffe Lake Bolac

First Semi – Glenthompson Dunkeld v Penshurst

15 and under

Second Semi – Woorndoo Mortlake v Tatyoon

First Semi – Moyston Willaura v Penshurst

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Ararat Rats netballers to have big presence in Wimmera finals

Ararat shooter Jakki Gibson in action during the Rats big win over Stawell in the final round of the Wimmera Netball Association home and away season. Picture: MARK MCMILLIANARARAT will have five of its six netball sides compete in this year’s Wimmera Netball Association finals, with B grade the unlucky side to miss out on September action, finishing the home and away season in six position just one win out of contention.
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The all conquering A grade team heads into another finals’ campaign eager to taste premiership glory for the first time since 2009.

The Rats will take on the Warrack Eagles at Murtoa tomorrow in the qualifying final with plenty of confidence following last Saturday’s 43-goal smashing of Stawell.

Ararat got out of the blocks quickly against the Warriors with a 17-goal to three opening quarter, before extending the buffer to 23 by the main break.

Stawell managed to restrict the Rats in the third term before the flood gates opened in the fourth quarter. The visitors piled on 20 goals to the Warriors’ four to run out convincing winners 67 to 24.

Rats’ coach Rebecca Skrabl said the final term blitz was the perfect lead in to week one of finals.

“It was definitely a step up from where we have been the last couple of weeks,” she said.

“We had two really good quarters, which were the first and the fourth. We were a little bit flat during the second and third quarter, but to finish off the way we did I am really happy we are lifting to where we need to be heading into finals.

“When we were hitting our high during the start of the season that was really the standard we were playing at, so it is a promising sign to see that coming back.”

Skrabl highlighted Ararat’s drive down the court as one of the biggest positives of the match, with best on court Kate Bligh the main orchestrator in centre.

“Kate is always a really solid contributor and she was just instrumental with our movement into attack,” she said.

“Also her defensive abilities around the ring were great, she picked off a lot of balls.”

Ararat has faced the Eagles twice during the home and away season, defeating the third placed team by a margin of eight goals in round six and 22 in round 13.

Skrabl said on both occasions the Rats weren’t at full potential, but will take their strongest line-up into tomorrow’s clash.

“I don’t think our previous two games against Warrack have been our best, particularly we had a bit of illness in the team the second time around,” she said.

“We are definitely looking forward to this game and ready for the challenge that we know we will get from them.”

The curtain fell on Ararat’s B grade season last Saturday, with the Warriors handing the Rats a 66 to 25 thumping.

The visitors went into the game with hopes of playing finals still mathematically alive, however without three of its midcourt players Ararat’s cause wasn’t helped.

Jacqui Scott stepped up from the 17 and unders and was a good contributor in wing attack and centre, passing well into the goalies and getting her hands to a number of loose balls.

Joint-coach Kara Cunningham stepped out of defence and into the midcourt as well to help fill the void and showed strong leadership.

Ararat’s 17 and unders produced a four quarter performance against the higher placed Warriors, which saw the Rats come away with a 52 to 28 goal win and a confidence booster ahead of Sunday’s rematch against Stawell in the do or die final.

Maddi Batchelor and Georgia Fleming dominated in goals with their accurate shooting, fantastic movement and team work.

The defensive pressure applied by the team all game created numerous scoring opportunities as the Rats built a lead at every change to record the 24-goal win.

The Rats’ 15 and under A team came out firing in the first half of its clash, gaining a 24-goal lead by halftime.

In the third quarter coaches Lauri and Brooke Williamson mixed up the side to rest some of the players that usually wouldn’t have a break, which meant re-adjusting to the changes making the third quarter (Ararat five goals, Stawell four) the closest.

Ararat’s two shooters, Tayla Borrelli and Rachael Fratin were stand out performers in the eventual 30-goal victory, with strong passing and an accurate conversion rate.

In previous weeks, the Rats haven’t had their full contingent of players in the 15 and under Bs, but started to get back to full strength at the weekend.

Coach Megan Shea said Ararat had a tough practice match against its Tatyoon counterpart in the lead up to the Stawell match, which proved a good opportunity to ‘blow out the cobwebs’.

The midweek hitout worked, with the Rats claiming a 48-goal win.

Lilly Sewell shot consistently and led strongly in the goal circle, while Briony Cann passed confidently down the court.

Karly Griffits was also recognised for her efforts in centre and wing defence.

Ararat’s 13 and unders stepped onto the court with plenty of enthusiasm, starting the first quarter against the Warriors on fire to lead by three goals at the first change.

The Rats maintained the lead at every change, with Katelin McDonald again picking up numerous intercepts and propelling the ball down the court, where Racquel Scott was waiting.

Scott has slotted beautifully into goals in recent weeks and is an important player in the attacking end.

The Rats and Warriors will meet again this Sunday in the elimination final.

Coach Kate Bligh said after losing the last encounter between the two sides by 18 goals, last weekend’s 33 to 32 win ‘is a huge confidence booster coming into finals’.

Wimmera finals

Saturday, August 30 – Murtoa Rec. Reserve

A grade: Ararat vs Warrack Eagles

15 and under A: Ararat vs Horsham Saints

15 and under B: Ararat vs Horsham Saints

Sunday, August 31 – Horsham City Oval

17 and under: Ararat vs Stawell

13 and under: Ararat vs Warrack Eagles

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Baird: Parramatta North to be transformed

Premier Mike Baird made the announcement at Fleet Street at Parramatta North today. Picture: supplied.
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NSW Premier and Minister for Western Sydney Mike Baird and Planning Minister Pru Goward today announced the historic heart of Parramatta North will be the focus of a major urban transformation project.

Mr Baird said the NSW Government was demonstrating its commitment to the project by declaring Parramatta North a State Significant Site. This will facilitate the preservation and enhancement of the precinct’s numerous heritage sites, while fast-tracking the delivery of thousands of new homes and jobs, providing a major economic boost for Western Sydney.

“The Parramatta North precinct is home to some of the state’s – and indeed Australia’s – most important heritage locations and assets, including Australia’s first farm and first water mill, Parramatta Female Factory and the Old Kings School,” Mr Baird said.

“The site also borders Parramatta’s commercial core, and the Westmead Health specialised precinct.

Mike Baird made the announcement at Fleet Street at Parramatta North today. Picture: supplied.

“There is such fantastic potential for the community to benefit from the showcasing of Parramatta’s multi-layered heritage, both Indigenous and colonial.

“We will be guided by heritage experts to ensure that the most significant buildings are preserved – this is our first priority, and early heritage and infrastructure works will commence within the year.

“It is critical that we find an appropriate adaptive reuse for these buildings, including community, cultural and commercial uses.

“The project is of such significance to the future of Australia’s second oldest city, we need to ensure all agencies are working together to manage land ownership complexities, heritage assets, and environmental concerns.

“The development will include improvements to local parkland and open space, as well as restoration of the Parramatta River bank and the creation of a river walk towards Lake Parramatta.

“Parramatta MP Geoff Lee has been a passionate advocate for Parramatta North and I thank him for his dedication and work on this project.”

As well as preserving Australia’s and Sydney’s important heritage, the project has the capacity to provide about 6,000 new homes for Parramatta’s growing population, and create 2000 permanent jobs.

Ms Goward said the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government will transform a 146-hectare parcel of Government owned land at Parramatta North, on the banks of the Parramatta River, into a vibrant new area that will create new housing and employment opportunities, while at the same time honouring the important heritage of the area.

“The Parramatta North project is an opportunity to create a wonderful place, preserving some of Australia’s most important heritage assets, and making them accessible to the community,” Ms Goward said.

“NSW Labor allowed Parramatta, which is as significant to our heritage as the Rocks, to fall into disrepair, but we aim to transform it, just as we are doing with other parts of Sydney and NSW.

“Parramatta North contains some of the country’s most architecturally significant sites, and we must act to preserve and enhance these convict era buildings.

“Getting this project right will mean a vibrant new place to live, side by side with some of Australia’s oldest buildings, and right on the beautiful Parramatta River.”

UrbanGrowthNSW has been leading the Parramatta North project, and extensive consultation has been undertaken with the local community, heritage and business groups, government agencies, Parramatta Council, and Parramatta MP Dr Geoff Lee.

The Parramatta North Urban Renewal area is comprised of four precincts, each with its own distinct character, including Parramatta Park, Cumberland Precinct, Sport and Leisure Precinct, and the Old Kings School Precinct.

The first priority is to begin the early heritage and infrastructure works which will commence within the year. It is also anticipated that a rezoning application will be lodged in September and the first development applications will be lodged in six months’ time.

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Youth services at your fingertips

THE search for information about youth services in the Upper Hunter has been simplified thanks to a collaborative effort between Muswellbrook Shire Council, Upper Hunter Community Services (UHCS) and BHP Billiton Mt Arthur Coal.
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The group has put together a comprehensive and easily accessible collection of data that focuses on health, education and training and employment services for young people aged between 12 and 24.

As part of the four-year Community Capacity Building Project, youth services were identified as a priority area for the partnership.

Providing the public with quality and accessible information about the services available to young people was seen as an area in particular need of support.

The material is available in a range of formats, including an information report entitled Youth Demographic and Support Service Snapshot 2014: Muswellbrook Local Government Area, a brochure and a webpage hosted by UHCS.

The brochure and webpage, developed in consultation with the Upper Hunter Youth Interagency Committee, cover the entire Upper Hunter area, while the information report, developed in consultation with local service providers, covers Muswellbrook Shire.

UHCS senior community development officer Cindy Milton said it was evident there was a need for such a resource in the area.

“We are increasingly being asked for this kind of information by various individuals and groups, so it’s great that our community can now be directed to one single point of reference,” she said.

“Together, the tools will be a great resource for our youth, parents, decision makers, professionals in the youth field and new residents of our area.

“I hope that the resources will be helpful to the community, particularly those looking to assist young people,” added council’s community services officer Sandra Vlacci.

BHP Billiton Mt Arthur Coal is investing more than $1.3 million over four years in the Community Capacity Building Project through which council and UHCS are working together to build a strong, sustainable and resilient Muswellbrook Shire community.

The initiative was developed in response to community feedback received through Mt Arthur Coal’s Sustainable Communities Project.

Copies of the information report and brochure are available on the council and UHCS websites: http://www.muswellbrook.nsw.gov.au and http://www.uhcs.org.au

COLLABORATION: Representatives from Muswellbrook Shire Council, BHP Billiton Mt Arthur Coal and Upper Hunter Community Services, from left, Cindy Milton, Lakin Agnew, Deirdra McCracken-Tindale and Sandra Vlacci.

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George Smith rolls up his sleeves to lend a hand

DURING the recent National Blood Donor Week, Red Cross encouraged people to donate blood.
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However, it was also a great time to also acknowledge those who have been dedicated to donation for decades.

George Smith has been giving blood since the 1970s and has donated 51 times.

The Muswellbrook resident’s long list of contributions was originally inspired by his late wife Judy Smith.

“My wife was a nurse and she was already giving blood so I decided to as well,” he told the Chronicle.

When Mrs Smith was diagnosed with breast cancer she was no longer able to donate, but Mr Smith has since kept the tradition.

“I feel good to know I’ve been able to help and, whenever I can, I give blood,” he said.

“We’re here to try to help people who are ill to get better.”

Together, Mr and Mrs Smith have saved more than 282 lives through their donations and Mr Smith plans to continue adding to that number.

Australian Red Cross Blood Service’s Donna Treseder commended Mr Smith and other donors on their willingness to lend a hand.

“It takes a lot of years of commitment to get to that level [like Mr Smith],” she said.

“The thing I admire about donors is they don’t know the details of where the blood will go but they come in trusting [Red Cross].

“It’s all for people they’re never going to meet.

“It could be used as early as the next day and the amount of people one can help with each donation can be quite a lot – every time you help at least three people.”

Mr Smith hopes to encourage people who may be undecided about giving blood to visit staff members at the Donormobile to discuss it.

“If [people] are hesitant at all, come on down and see what happens and do some good,” he said.

“The system here in Australia is very safe.

“Flu season and other things can stop regulars from donating so we need others to come in to cover the regulars.”

Another Muswellbrook resident, Heather Murphy, has also passed the 50 donations point.

The Red Cross Blood Donormobile will be back in Muswellbrook from Monday, October 20, to Thursday, October 23, at the Muswellbrook PCYC car park.

For more blood donation facts, or to book a donation session for October, visit www.donateblood南京夜网.au or phone 131 495.

RED-DY TO HELP: Australian Red Cross Blood Service’s Ros Armstrong and regular blood donor George Smith at the Donormobile in Muswellbrook.

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Planting the idea

LOCAL green thumbs will be delighted to hear plans for a Muswellbrook community garden are growing by the day.
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Muswellbrook Shire Council’s Kirsten McKimmie and Tracy Ward are calling on anyone who may be interested in helping the concept take root.

Ms McKimmie was inspired to begin planning when she saw another town’s community garden.

“I just thought, ‘wow, that’s great, we need to have that in Muswellbrook’,” she told the Chronicle.

“Some people feel Muswellbrook doesn’t have that community feeling and we’re hoping to bring that to Muswellbrook.”

Mrs Ward was involved in the organisation of Denman’s community

garden and saw how rewarding it was for participants and its ability to bring people together.

The women said the garden will be for the entire Muswellbrook community – all ages and skill levels.

They are hosting an information evening at the Muswellbrook and District Workers Club next Tuesday, September 2, at 6pm.

Interested locals are encouraged to attend and put their hand up to be a part of the committee.

Ms McKimmie said there were currently no rules or guidelines for the garden – and it was up to the residents to share their suggestions and get behind the project.

“While it is a council initiative, this will be community-driven not council-driven,” she said.

They are hoping to have the first sod turned at the Sustainability Fair in late November.

The garden will be at Lions Park and council is currently working with Muswellbrook Lions, among others in preparation for its establishment.

“This is part of the Sustainability Street initiative which is funded by Coal & Allied,” Mrs Ward said.

Refreshments, including local produce, will be served at the meeting.

For more information, contact Kirsten or Tracy at Muswellbrook Shire Council on 6549 3700.

GREEN REVOLUTION: Muswellbrook Shire Council’s Kirsten McKimmie and Tracy Ward are planning a community garden for Muswellbrook.

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