Chris Gregg’s edible gardens inspire Queanbeyan

Chris Gregg in his vegie patch with a crop of Monaro garlic that is being grown in space in an industrial area of Queanbeyan. Photo: Jeffrey Chan
Nanjing Night Net

Christopher Gregg is growing 2500 garlic plants in two locations in Queanbeyan, one on a hill high in the industrial area, the other on the three-acre property of a friend in Wickerslack Lane.  There are five beds with 500 plants in each of the purple Monaro and white garlic varieties. This is Gregg’s third year of growing garlic, with 300 plants the first year, 900 the second and now this huge experimental crop.

His mentor for the past eight years has been Tony Romeo, of Adelong, who grows 20,000 garlic plants each year.  Gregg visits him once a month for friendship and instruction. Gregg was born in New Zealand but came to Australia when he was three for his father to work on the Snowy Hydro scheme and he grew up in Talbingo. His whole garden scenario in Queanbeyan is only three years old.

Gregg is a panelbeater by trade but he is working as a wards assistant at Canberra Hospital and it is there that his vast crop of produce is shared.  He says the garlic goes to nurses because there are so many nationalities working in that area that he has a wide clientele who hound him for the harvest that will be ready this year from mid-to-late November.

He also grows snow peas and has distributed about four kilos so far to the nurses.  Each person receives about 250g and one male Indian nurse told Gregg that he had never tasted snow peas previously and would like to learn how to grow them.  Gregg says, “I will teach him to garden. It is all so vibrant for me.”

On the windy hilltop in Queanbeyan with its wonderful views to the mountains, Parliament House and Black Mountain, Gregg also has rows of broad beans covered in black and white flowers and tiny pods are just forming.

He is self-taught and proud of what has been achieved on barren land in such a short time.  He thinks it may inspire others in similar circumstances.  He brought in four metres of compost soil and built the  veg  vegie garden on top of shale rock.  For the snow peas he dug a trench in the shale and laid potting mix in it and then dug another trench next to it for 80 sugar snap pea seeds, 40 Yukomo Japanese giant snow peas and 20 purple podded peas.

Purple dragon carrots and three-coloured Afghan carrots, with superior antioxidant and carotene levels and a sweet yet spicy flavour, thrive in soil along a cyclone wire fence that is hung with green plastic pot troughs full of strawberry plants.  Down the driveway side of the plot he has  place  placed car tyres wired two on top of each other, and filled these with stones in the bottom so they do not move, then vegetable waste, then shredded paper and mushroom compost on top. The car tyre beds are ready for the planting of eight different varieties of tomatoes, including seed saved from Roma and huge Black Russian tomatoes grown last season, and plain red and pink Bumble Bee cherry tomatoes. There is a row of black plastic pots with a colourful plant of ruby chard or silver beet in each one.  Purple and white lavender plants have their own tiny plot.

Earlier this year Gregg had a small climbing vine bean that he raised from seeds from a friend  The plant grew to six feet high and eight feet long and he harvested around 3000 beans off it.  There are two worm farms and everything is raised without chemicals. Tall thin stakes are strategically placed throughout the plantings and each wears a small windmill that twirls and whirrs in the wind, in the hope of keeping cockatoos away.

Christopher Gregg is an inspiration.

Susan Parsons is a Canberra writer.

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Barry Spurr takes online journal to court over racist, sexist emails

Professor Barry Spurr says the emails were part of a ‘linguistic game’. Photo: James Brickwood Professor Barry Spurr says the emails were part of a ‘linguistic game’. Photo: James Brickwood
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Professor Barry Spurr says the emails were part of a ‘linguistic game’. Photo: James Brickwood

Professor Barry Spurr says the emails were part of a ‘linguistic game’. Photo: James Brickwood

Email trail could expose academics who read Professor Barry Spurr’s bile

Lawyers for poetry professor Barry Spurr have taken an online journal to court to force it to take down emails that expose his sexist and racist rants to colleagues and friends.

On Tuesday, Federal Court judge Michael Wigney granted an interlocutory injunction until Thursday, restraining New Matilda from publishing further details of Professor Spurr’s emails. But emails and stories already published could remain online pending the hearing on Thursday.

The owner and editor of New Matilda Chris Graham had refused Professor Spurr’s demand to remove the emails and his coverage of the affair by 10am on Tuesday.

“We stand by the story 100 per cent,” Graham said.

The exposure of the emails, which spanned the past two years, led the University of Sydney to suspend Professor Spurr pending an investigation. The emails included his insults of the university’s chancellor Belinda Hutchinson as an “appalling minx”, Prime Minister Tony Abbott as an “Abo lover” and an Aboriginal family as a human “rubbish tip”.

Arthur Moses SC, for Professor Spurr, told the court that publication was clearly in breach of the Privacy Act, which he asserted protected the personal nature of the academic’s emails, regardless of the public’s curiosity in the matter.

Graham had told Professor Spurr’s lawyers Laxon Lex that New Matilda did not illegally obtain the emails. “We merely published them,” he said.

He also rejected their stated legal grounds for an injunction, including an alleged breach of the tort of the invasion of privacy. Graham said no such tort existed.

Professor Spurr was on the federal government’s National Curriculum Review.

The recipients of his emails included senior academics at the university. New Matilda had redacted their names but was weighing up the public interest in revealing their identities.

The University of Sydney said that, as part of its investigation, it was reviewing email traffic on his university account. “For the time being, that is the extent of its investigation,” a spokeswoman said.

In one email, Professor Spurr supported an assertion that only 5 per cent of people at Australian universities should be there, adding: “One day the Western world will wake up, when the Mussies and the chinky-poos have taken over.”

Graham told Fairfax Media: “How many so-called ‘Mussies’, ‘chinky-poos’ and ‘Abos’ are on their campus? There are Muslims, Asians and Aboriginal people … and the university owes it to them to assure them that its senior ranks are not populated by people who have a thinly veiled disdain for them.”

But Graham added that Professor Spurr’s role on the curriculum review made the public-interest test for publishing his story a “no-brainer”.

“For the other people involved,” he said, “I think the public interest case is more complicated and we’re still earnestly trying to work through it.”

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Cessnock Relay For Life 2014, photos

Cessnock Relay For Life 2014, photos CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Celebrating cancer survival is another key message of Relay For Life.
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CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Team Rob (who walk in memory of Robert Martin) getting ready for the street parade.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park. Relay patron Sue Craft was transported in a military vehicle.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The street parade makes its way down Vincent Street to Baddeley Park. The Hunter School of Performing Arts marching band played at the street parade and relay.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Cessnock Mayor Bob Pynsent, Cessnock Relay For Life committee member Nell Thompson, patron Sue Craft and her husband Wayne and Member for Cessnock Clayton Barr at the opening ceremony. Photo by Lauren Woolley.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Survivors and Carers opening lap.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Cessnock RSL Pipes and Drums band marches in the opening lap.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Survivors and Carers opening lap.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Survivors and Carers opening lap.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Survivors and Carers opening lap.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Survivors and Carers opening lap.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The survivors and carers opening lap.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Hunter School of Performing Arts marching band.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Hunter School of Performing Arts marching band.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Teams hit the track as the relay gets underway.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Teams hit the track as the relay gets underway.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Teams hit the track as the relay gets underway. Remembering those who have lost their battles with cancer is one of the key messages of Relay For Life.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Hunter Valley Zoo animals were a hit with kids of all ages.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Hunter Valley Zoo animals were a hit with kids of all ages.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Relay regulars Crimson Tide performed once again.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The GoodStarters team won best decorated tent. Pictured is (back) Narelle Crebert, Denise Stanistreet, Helen Andrews, Adam Andrews; front, Kirsten Hugo, Liz Attewell and son Noah, Denika Green and niece Harlow, and nephew Tyree.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Team Fitzgibbon (from Member for Hunter, Joel Fitzgibbon’s office) in front of the Hope sign.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Fr. James Cooper from St. John’s Anglican Church, Relay patron Sue Craft and her husband Wayne, and their daughter Kylie Francis.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Relayers from Mount View High and the ‘Making Strides’ team, (back row) Maxine Chapman, Anna Wells, Ainslie Griffin, Thomas Wiese, Eliza Onion, and front, Nathan Blackburn, Zac Maloney, Angela Roughan, Grace Wells, Brock Sneesby and Caitlin Ivan.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The Demented Demons won best dressed team. Pictured is (standing, left to right) Kyesha Gosney, Anne Donn, Margar­et Greenhill, Wilam Hall, Jolie Free­man and Kathie Donn, and kneeling, Darcy Balazic, Felicity Donn, Kaitlin Donn and Vanessa Tiernan.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The boxcar derby was once again a highlight.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The boxcar derby was once again a highlight.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Passion For Life, a team of Cessnock Breast Cancer Support Group members, family and friends.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The mascot race was also a drawcard event at this year’s Relay.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The mascot race was also a drawcard event at this year’s Relay.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: The mascot race was also a drawcard event at this year’s Relay.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Local band Pumpkin Juice provided entertainment.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Dancers from Kirsty Gunther Academy of Dance performed.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Dancers from Kirsty Gunther Academy of Dance performed.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Dancers from Kirsty Gunther Academy of Dance performed.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Shaye Apperley was one of many local singers who donated their time to perform at the Relay.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Fighting back against cancer is the third key message of the Relay For Life motto.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Gemma Trudgett, Bradley Dow and Nadine Hickey read at the Candelight Ceremony of Hope, remembering loved ones lost to cancer.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Pat McCarthy reading at the Candelight Ceremony of Hope.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Pat McCarthy reading at the Candelight Ceremony of Hope.

CESSNOCK RELAY FOR LIFE: Relayers were invited to light candles during the Hope ceremony.

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Debbie Skelton: Smoked lamb with broad bean and pumpkin salad

Smoked lamb, lemon and broad beans. Photo: Steve ShanahanApologies in advance are probably in order here, as I inflict on you the well worn cafe and restaurant mantra of fresh, local, seasonal produce these dishes. This concept is not new or unique and producers the world over have been working with seasonally available produce for ages, actually, forever. 
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In these dishes, I also incorporate one of the most basic preservation techniques, smoking, used to preserve the spring produce through leaner times. In this instance, this is not used to preserve, but to add flavour. In making the most of the sweet spring produce available now and the smoking for flavour, I create a light, spring lunch, evocative of the Mediterranean. 

As in the Mediterranean,I produced my own backyard crop for the choicest and sweetest peas, broad beans, mint and citrus that were ready to harvest bang on time for a family birthday feast. While preparing the vegetables, I am mesmerised by the soft, fluffy green papoose of the broad bean pod that protects its offspring, keeping it in perfect condition. And the verdant greens of the mint, coriander and peas have not yet been yellowed off by the sun. This time of year really is the height of food perfection. 

For a low-fuss feast, throw together these ingredients with some smoked new season lamb, and few embellishments are needed for a gorgeous Mediterranean-inspired spring lunch. 

To smoke the lamb and lemons I used a simple smoking technique using a kettle barbecue with hot coals and hickory chips available at most hardware shops. Smoked lamb with smashed broad bean and spiced pumpkin salad

Serves 4

800g butternut pumpkin, deseeded, peeled and diced

¼ tsp ground allspice

salt and ground pepper

3 tbsp pumpkin seeds

500g broad beans, unpodded. If fresh broad beans are not available use frozen. 

12 lamb cutlets

100g marinated feta, crumbled

½ cup coriander leaves, finely chopped

2 tbsp lemon juice

Hickory wood chips

Olive oil spray

Paste

1 tbsp olive oil

1tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp sweet paprika

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

½ tsp ground turmeric

2 tbsp lemon juice

¼ cup chopped flat leaf parsley

¼ cup chopped coriander

Preheat the oven to 180C. Line an oven tray with baking paper and place chopped pumpkin on the tray drizzled with olive oil, and sprinkled with allspice, salt and pepper to taste.

Bake for 30 minutes and then scatter the pumpkin seeds over the top and bake for another five minutes or so until the seeds are roasted. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.

To make the paste, heat the oil in a small saucepan over a medium to low heat. Add the cumin, ground coriander, paprika, turmeric and garlic.

Cook, stirring for one minute. Remove from the heat and add the lemon juice, fresh, chopped coriander and parsley. Stir to combine. Smear half of the paste onto the cutlets to marinate and set the remainder aside. 

Prepare the broad beans by cooking in a medium saucepan of boiling water for three minutes. Drain and refresh in cold water and drain and cool.

When cooled, peel off outer shell and reserve the inner beans. Gently smash with a potato masher, still leaving a coarse texture.

Any smoker can be used to smoke the lamb cutlets. I use a simple kettle barbecue using hot coals cooked down for a few hours with the kettle lid placed on it.

Spray the cutlets with a light spray of olive oil. Place the cutlets on a greased wire rack that sits over a disposable foil tray with a handful of hickory chips spread over the base.

The foil tray should sit on the kettle rack in the barbecue with the hot coals underneath it. Place the lid on the preheated kettle barbecue and leave the vent slightly open.

The cutlets should take about 30 minutes to cook. They will turn a dark red on the outside and just pink on the inside. For well-done lamb return to the heat for about another 10 minutes or cooked inside when checked for doneness.

To assemble the dish, combine the pumpkin, broad beans, feta and coriander in a bowl with a dash of olive oil and the lemon juice. Divide among serving plates and top with the lamb cutlets and a dollop of the remaining paste. Smoked lemon, peas and broad beans on flatbread

Serves 4

4 Lebanese flatbreads

olive oil spray

2 tsp dried mixed herbs

2 garlic cloves, peeled

4 tbsp olive oil

800g broad beans in shell, alternatively, use frozen broad beans

250g fresh peas in shell, alternatively, use frozen peas

⅓ bunch fresh mint

2 lemons, halved

100g pecorino cheese, grated

salt and ground pepper

Smoked lemons

Preheat smoker or barbecue and place lemon halves over a grill with a smoking wood below. I generally use hickory chips. Smoke for 15 minutes or until the lemons appear golden and caramelised. They should be softened. 

If you are cooking this complete meal with the smoked lamb, you can smoke the lemons at the same time as the lamb.

Broad bean and pea topping

Shell the broad beans from the outer pod and cook the beans in a pot of boiling water for 2 minutes.

Remove the beans with a slotted spoon and reserve the water for the peas and set broad beans aside. Shell the peas and cook for two minutes in the broad bean water. Drain the peas and set aside.

Shell the cooked broad beans.

In a food processor, pulse the beans, peas, mint, half the pecorino cheese, garlic, olive oil and juice from one smoked lemon for a few seconds to achieve a slightly chunky mixture.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. 

Flatbread

Preheat oven to 200C and spray the flatbreads lightly with olive oil on both sides. Sprinkle with a little salt and the herbs. Cook in the oven on a rack over an oven tray for about 10 minutes or until golden and crisp but not burnt.

To assemble, break the flatbreads into shards and pile on the broad bean and pea topping, serving with extra grated pecorino, a further drizzle of olive oil and the remaining smoked lemon cut into halves again.

thefoodcollective.net

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Body found dumped on secluded road at Greengrove

Two people are in custody after the body of a man was found on the side of a road near Mangrove Creek on the state’s Central Coast on Tuesday.
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Police believe he was killed during a domestic-related incident at St Marys and later dumped on a secluded road at Greengrove.

A motorcyclist discovered the man, believed to be aged in his 40s, in bush near the intersection of Mangrove Creek Road and Wisemans Ferry Road about 7.30am.

Police arrested a man, 35, and a woman, 36,  shortly after the victim’s body was found.

Charges have yet to be laid.

“The man’s death is currently being treated as suspicious and police are appealing for any information about the circumstances leading to the man’s death,” a NSW Police spokesman said.

The man’s body had yet to be formally identified and police are still trying to contact his next of kin.

He was found a few kilometres from a yoga retreat but staff said police had not come to question them.

Police taped off an area of road and bush where the body was found and the area has been forensically examined.

Detectives from the homicide squad, St Marys, Brisbane Waters and Lake Macquarie have been involved in an investigation and worked together to arrest the pair that remain in custody.

Police will prepare a brief for the coroner.

Anyone with information was urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. Domestic Family Violence Counselling Service 1800 737 732, Men’s Referral Service 1300 766 491

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Hereford youth rise to the top at Cootamundra feature show

Holding the reserve ribbon is Helen DeCostan pictured with champion Emma Keech.
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Young Hereford cattle handlers dominated the junior judging, paraders and led cattle classes at the Cootamundra All Breeds Feature Show.

The southern NSW event drew 34 exhibitors and 115 cattle from eight different breeds, with Herefords as the 2014 feature breed.

Event co-ordinator Adam Randall said 50 whiteface entries faced the judges.

“Exhibitors attended from a wide area, including a number of new exhibitors, and most breeds had more than 15 head,’’ Mr Randall said.

“There were 80 school children representing seven schools, plus another 15 school aged students attending the show with studs.’’

Mr Randall said the school students took part in junior judging of fruit, grain, wool, sheep and cattle as well as parading and exhibiting cattle over the two days.

The school trophy for junior judging went to Hurlstone Agricultural High School.

Herefords Australia Youth Ambassador Helen DeCosta qualified for the state junior judging at the 2015 Sydney Royal Show.

Students qualifying for the paraders competition at Sydney next year were Jack Bush, Logan Manwaring, Patrick Gaudie, Josh Manwaring, Bryce Johnson, Jeremy Mackey, Maddeline Coomber, Chloe Waters, Cooper Carter and Taylah Phyllis.

Logan Manwaring was the champion parader with Jordan Alexander as reserve champion.

In the Hereford classes, Hylands Werai was sashed junior and grand champion bull.

Beggan Hill Hawke was senior champion Hereford bull and senior champion interbreed bull.

Beggan Hill Doreen was senior and grand champion female, with Rose-View Doreen the junior champion Hereford female.

2014 Melbourne Royal Show interbreed junior bull champion Tondara Clives Vendetta continued his winning ways to claim junior and grand champion Poll Hereford bull.

The 18-month-old bull was also named interbreed junior bull and supreme beef exhibit.

Benell Dragon Boy was senior champion Poll Hereford bull.

The 2014 Melbourne Royal supreme Poll Hereford exhibit Kanimbla Miss K H100 was sashed senior and grand champion Poll Hereford female.

Kanimbla Irish Rose was named the junior champion female and went on to claim the interbreed junior female.

Kanimbla Poll Herefords, Holbrook, NSW, exhibited the winning group of three and pair of heifers.

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Todd Smart caps off big month with maiden winner

OFF AND RACING: Wagga trainer Todd Smart, with For Mia, enjoyed his first winner last Saturday at Murrumbidgee Turf Club. Picture: Laura HardwickNEW Wagga trainer Todd Smart has enjoyed what he deems “a good month”.
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Smart enjoyed the first win of his training career last Saturday when Reka Outlaw posted a dominant 3½length victory in the PRD Nationwide Benchmark 55 Handicap (1300m).

It capped off a big month after he and partner Jehanne welcomed a new baby boy, Harry.

Smart also enjoyed his 32nd birthday last Thursday.

“It’s great, it’s been a good month,” Smart said.

“It was good to get my first winner for David Tout, because he actually got me started in racing and has supported me.

“Hopefully it’s onwards and upwards from here.”

It only took seven starters for Smart to enjoy his first winner.

Reka Outlaw was only having his second start for Smart and the fledging Wagga trainer is eyeing off bigger things with the five-year-old.

“He’s a work in progress … but I don’t think we’ve seen the best of him yet,” Smart said. “I think we now realise he’s a contender for the Country Championships.

“We’ll head down that alley.”

Smart and connections also pulled off a nice plunge with as much as $12 taken about Reka Outlaw with corporate bookmakers.

He started $5.00 on track.

Smart has now seven horses in work and is looking forward to his hometown feature next month, the Snake Gully Cup, with Art Thou Ready.

“I’ve got seven in work now and obviously wanting to build,” Smart said. “I’m still getting to know people but hopefully I can show them what I can do.”

Smart thanked Tout and Martin Hey for their support since taking out his trainer’s licence in May this year.

JERILDERIE trainer Phil Sweeney will head to Moonee Valley on Friday night with in-form fair Sweet Emily and Final Jest.

Sweet Emily was an impressive last-start winner at Swan Hill when breaking the 975 metre course record when bolting in by 5½lengths in a time of 54.94 seconds.

The first-up romp has prompted Sweeney to tackle a $100,000 heat of the 55 Second Challenge (955m) at Moonee Valley with the four-year-old mare.

Sweet Emily, a winner of four of her eight starts, is 17th in the ballot order.

Sweeney has also nominated Final Jest for the $100,000 Country Cup (1600m).

Final Jest took out the Jerilderie Cup two starts ago and then went to Moonee Valley for a sixth placing.

NOMINATIONS for Southern District Racing Association’s (SDRA) Racing Personality of the Year close soon.

Leeton trainer Peter Clancy was the inaugural winner last year and nominations for this year’s award close on November 1.

Anyone can nominate or be nominated and nominations should be sent to SDRA secretary Scott Sanbrook at [email protected]南京夜网.au by Saturday week.

The second SDRA awards night is set to be held on Friday, November 21 at Murrumbidgee Turf Club.

A host of awards will be presented on the night, including SDRA Horse of the Year, 2YO of the Year and the premiership winners.

SDRA secretary Scott Sanbrook has called for industry participants to nominate.

“We’re looking for someone who has made a great contribution to racing in the area, as well as popular racing identities,” Sanbrook said.

“Peter Clancy was a popular winner last year and we’re looking for racing participants from all facets of the industry, from strappers right through to administrators.”

Sanbrook encouraged all industry participants to attend the night and to RSVP to [email protected]南京夜网.au for catering purposes.

The night is free to attend.

A COUPLE of in-form Southern District horses are set to head to Canterbury on Friday night.

Last-start Canberra winner Heysen is nominated for the $40,000 Benchmark 75 Handicap (1900m).

Heysen has been a model of consistency for Wagga trainer Wayne Carroll this preparation and will relish the jump in distance to 1900m.

Leeton’s Lilly Pilly Cup winner Golden Sally is also nominated for Canterbury.

Trainer Peter Clancy has nominated the promising mare for the $40,000 Benchmark 75 Handicap (1100m).

Golden Sally has four wins from nine career starts. Those four wins have come from her past five starts.

WAGGA trainer Chris Heywood enjoyed a winning double with a difference last Saturday.

Heywood was happy to see Dantains Spirit make it two from two at Murrumbidgee Turf Club, when taking out the Lake Village Foodworks Class One Handicap (1200m).

Heywood was also successful at the Fernhill picnic meeting in Sydney.

Living Fire ($4.60) took out the opening event on the card, a $7500 maiden over 850m, with Rebeka Prest in the saddle.

Heywood and Prest also combined to finish third with Steel Bullet and fourth with Lautrec.

THE Fernhill picnic meeting also proved a memorable day for Canberra’s John Nisbet.

Back in the saddle after 10 years, Nisbet enjoyed the first win of his comeback with a win in the $15,000 Fernhill Cup (1450m) aboard the William Slater-trained Color Purple.

Nisbet recently finished his training career and is riding at the picnics for some fun.

ANOTHER clash between promising four-year-olds Miss Mellencamp and Mitchell Road will be one of the features at Albury’s TAB meeting on Saturday.

Albury will hold its Cox Plate day meeting on Saturday where they received 121 nominations for the seven-race card.

Miss Mellencamp and Mitchell Road are both nominated for the Class Two Plate (1175m).

They both met at Leeton last start where Miss Mellencamp downed Mitchell Road by a half length.

Also nominated for the same race is unbeaten David Hayes trained filly Anaween.

The two divisions of the Benchmark 55 Handicap (1000m) are also set to attract interest.

HARDEN District Picnic Racing Club will hold its annual Cup meeting on Saturday.

The $7000 Harden Picnic Cup has attracted 13 nominations, including the likes of Late Starter, Pointing To Gold, Central Act and Poker Pro.

The $3500 Trophy Handicap has also drawn some interesting nominations with Our Little Alert, Exchancellor, Our Hussey and The Youngfella among the entries.’

There is 59 nominations for the six-race card.

PLENTY of Southern District trainers will head to Canberra on Friday.

Wagga trainer Gary Colvin has nominated sprinters Miss Bemuse and Zatigeroo for the Benchmark 70 Handicap (1200m).

A Little Alert, for trainer Brad Witt, is also among a list of quality nominations for the same race.

Other Southern District-trained horses among the nominations for Canberra are Late Starter, Sparkling To Win, Inner Clinch, Regallic, Zakynthos Pripecho, Zanity, Burante, Cabramurra Lad and Zarababe.

What’s On

Racing

Saturday: Albury (TAB), Harden (non-TAB)

Harness Racing

Friday: Wagga (TAB)

Greyhound Racing

Tonight: Wagga (TAB)

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$12 million to protect Goulburn River from Moolarben mine sediment

Moolarben Coal will spend about $12 million upgrading its water management system over the next year as part of a voluntary agreement with the NSW Environment Protection Authority.
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A legally binding Pollution Reduction Program was issued by the EPA in August and requires Moolarben Coal to complete numerous improvements by December 2015.

EPA Central West Region Manager, Richard Whyte, said upgrades to Moolarben Coal’s water management system aim to reduce the impact of the mine’s activities on the Goulburn River.

“The upgrades are being undertaken so that the water quality in the Goulburn River downstream of the mine is better protected from sediment during high rainfall,” Mr Whyte said.

“The upgrades will significantly increase the storage capacity of sediment control dams in the coal handling plant area. This will involve de-silting sediment control dams and the installation of new sediment control dams.”

Mr Whyte said Moolarben Coal’s clean water diversion drainage system will also be upgraded, allowing stormwater run-off not impacted by coal mining to remain separated and sediment free.

Environmentalist and mine neighbour, Julia Imrie, raised concerns yesterday that despite the upgrades, Moolarben Coal’s Environmental Protection Licence does not have enough flexibility after high rainfall.

She said Moolarben’s pollution limits are suspended when more than 44 millimetres of rain is received over a five day period. According to Ulan and Gulgong rainfall records, this particular event occurred 10 times during 2013.

Mrs Imrie also believes the limit for salinity of discharge waters is set too high and there should also be additional continuous monitoring of water quality in the Goulburn River.

“Rigorous on going management of on site water and sediment run-off will continue to be a complicated and problematic operation considering the close proximity of the open cut operations to the river and major creek lines and the potential size of the expanding mine footprint and disturbed area,” she said.

The upgrades will reportedly add to improvements made by Moolarben Coal following a series of water pollution incidents involving sediment during 2009 and 2012.

A spokesman from Yancoal, owners of Moolarben Coal, said on Monday that support from the Environment Protection Authority was a “positive step forward” for the mining complex.

He said support from EPA had also come for the mine’s water management plans, a condition of its Modification 9 planning approval.

“The approval allows us to commence new infrastructure workings to increase our surface water management controls in the interests of the operation and surrounding waterways,” the spokesman said.

“We have welcomed the EPA’s continued support for the development and implementation of Moolarben’s surface water pollution reduction program, following a long period of transparent discussions to determine the best outcome for all parties.

“The program reflects Moolarben’s continued commitment to implementing the highest standards of environmental management.”

Pollution Reduction Programs (PRPs) are legally enforceable and are either voluntarily entered into or directed by the EPA to be undertaken to reduce pollution or environmental harm.

PRPs are one of many regulatory tools the EPA uses to achieve environmental compliance by licensees.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.


The X-Factor runner-up Dean a ray of hope for tiny Queensland town

Queensland X Factor contestant Dean Ray.The tiny Queensland town of Meandarra is celebrating after its most famous son finished second on The X-Factor.
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Dean Pritchard – known to fans as Dean Ray – was just pipped by Marlisa Punzalan in the final of the Channel Seven singing competition.

The 22-year-old grew up in Meandarra, which is five hours’ drive west of Brisbane and has a population around 80.

Manager of the Royal Hotel Emily Jamieson said Dean might be rocking slick hair and even slicker leather, but that wasn’t the case when they went to primary school together.

“Oh, he was a country boy,” she said.

“But he’s always been around music – he used to play the drums but now he’s an awesome guitarist and singer.”

Western Downs mayor Ray Brown said the Pritchards were a well known cattle farming family.

“It just goes to show that in rural Queensland and rural Australia, we have just as much talent as the big cities,” he said.

“We breed them pretty well out here – Pete Murray’s from Chinchilla.”

Dean attended Chinchilla High School.

Ms Jamieson said more than 400 people turned up last Wednesday night for Dean’s “coming home” visit for the show, where he met old friends and played a gig at the Royal Hotel.

“It was crazy, it was the busiest night Meandarra’s ever seen,” she said.

“I had some friends who came from as far away as the Gold Coast.”

But she said the bulk of the town went to a different location last night to watch the final.

“We tend to share everything around Meandarra, so because it was a big night here last Wednesday, we held it at the bowls club last night,” Ms Jamieson said.

She said since moving to Melbourne, Dean had been a regular visitor back home, and always played gigs at the pub when in town.

“We’ve always known how talented he is,” she said.

“He’ll go off and do massive things now.”

Cr Brown said Dean Ray was already set to headline Chinchilla’s famous Melon Festival in February next year.

“He’s been asked to everything we’ve got going on, I can tell you,” he said.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.


GREG RAY: Judgment on Gough’s legacy

LABOR PARTY LEGEND: Former prime minister Gough Whitlam launches Michael Cooper’s book Encounters with the Australian Constitution in 1987. Picture: Fairfax Media.
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Lewis’ view

NOW Gough Whitlam is dead, the war of words over his legacy will flare again between those who see him, during his time in office, as having been some kind of demigod and those who prefer to view him as an irresponsible loose cannon.

Being too young to really understand how it felt to live through that exciting political era (I was just 13 when the governor-general sacked the Whitlam government) I have to rely on second-hand accounts.

The standard version runs that conservatives had ruled Australia for a long time until 1972, but became stale.

Whitlam turned up with tonnes of charisma and the promise of reinventing the nation in a social-democratic mould. Voters agreed it was time, and gave him his chance.

We will read accounts in the days ahead of his massive social reforms. How universal free healthcare meant people no longer had to fear bankruptcy over their doctors’ bills. Suddenly tertiary education was within everybody’s reach. Divorce no longer required proof of infidelity. On and on the lists will go.

At about this point the critics take over the story. “Tried to do too much too quickly,” is one standard, probably true. “Relied on erratic ministers. Was too naive and idealistic. Was economically unrealistic.”

Whitlam wanted to “buy back the farm” – taking control over Australia’s resource wealth for the benefit of Australian people and to further his wider social programs.

One thing for sure, as even the middle-of-the-road Labor moderate Kevin Rudd found out to his cost, mentioning the idea of clawing back more control over Australia’s resource wealth is a sure way to buy yourself a world of pain from the transnational corporate bullies who run the show.

Another way is to upset Uncle Sam.

For better or worse, Australia has relied on the United States of America to supply its security umbrella since the 1940s, when Labor’s John Curtin famously turned away from sagging Britain and asked for America’s help to shield us from the advancing Japanese.

When Whitlam was in power the Cold War between the West and the USSR was raging, and American bases in Australia were a vital part of the West’s listening network. This, however, was not publicly known, and even government ministers had no idea what the US bases on Australian soil were really for.

By asking questions about those bases, Whitlam upset America’s powerful Central Intelligence Agency and it’s commonly believed that this – more than most other factors – is what led to his dismissal.

Whitlam pulled Australian troops out of Vietnam, ended conscription and publicly denounced the US bombing of Hanoi in 1972, infuriating then US president Richard Nixon.

The Falcon and the Snowman, a 1979 book about American ‘‘traitor’’ Christopher Boyce, cited telex messages between CIA operatives, describing events in Australia.

According to the book, it was the Whitlam government’s pointed questions about the role and purpose of US spy bases in the Australian outback that caused the most anxiety.

‘‘The CIA, convinced that the future of facilities vital to the security of the United States was jeopardised by a potentially unfriendly government… secretly poured money heavily into the opposition Liberal and National Country parties. The CIA wanted Whitlam out,’’ the book asserts.

Whitlam kept making public references to the outback bases and their links to the CIA, angering the organisation more and more.

According to The Falcon and the Snowman, ‘‘On November 11, Prime Minister Whitlam had scheduled another speech in which he was to discuss the CIA and the installations in the Outback. But he never got the chance to deliver it. On that day, Governor-General Sir John Kerr removed him from office.’’

The question of the extent of American involvement in the demise of Whitlam will be debated anew in days to come, especially since noted author Peter Carey’s new book, Amnesia, happens to dwell on the subject, too.

Carey believes the CIA played a big part, and Christopher Boyce – the Edward Snowden of his day – has given recent interviews in which he continues to assert the same.

It’s a fascinating facet of the story of the Whitlam government, with relevance not only to history but also, perhaps, to the present day and international relations in the Asia Pacific.