Whitlam’s childhood home could be knocked down in days

Gough Whitlam’s childhood home in Rowland Street, Kew Photo: Mark Hawthorne Gough Whitlam’s childhood home in Rowland Street, Kew Photo: Mark Hawthorne

Gough Whitlam’s childhood home in Rowland Street, Kew Photo: Mark Hawthorne

Gough Whitlam’s childhood home in Rowland Street, Kew Photo: Mark Hawthorne

Gough Whitlam’s childhood home in Rowland Street, Kew Photo: Mark Hawthorne

The childhood home of former prime minister Gough Whitlam could be demolished within days to make way for a “McMansion” after a heritage protection for the century-old property was refused by the state government and Heritage Victoria.

Boroondara Council and concerned residents have lobbied Premier Denis Napthine and Planning Minister Matthew Guy to save Ngara, the family home at 46 Rowland Street in Kew where Mr Whitlam was born in 1916.

According to local legend, the future prime minister was born on the kitchen table of the home.

Ngara was purchased by overseas buyer Youquing Liang for $3.3 million in November 2013, and the new owner wants to bulldoze the historic house to make way for a new residence.

According to documents obtained by The Age, Dr Napthine was advised of the historical significance of the property in May this year, and passed on the information to Mr Guy.

In June, Jim Gardner, the executive director of statutory planning and heritage at the Department of Transport, Planning and Local Infrastructure, wrote to local residents on behalf of Mr Guy, and told them that heritage protection had been refused “on the grounds that there is not a prima facie case for inclusion of the place on the Victorian Heritage Register (VHR).”

That letter, titled “Gough Whitlam birthplace”, was forwarded to Dr Napthine.

Mr Guy later refused permission for interim heritage protection to be given to the property.

According to Boroondara Council’s heritage application Ngara is worthy of heritage protection as a place of  “individual significance”.

At least seven other homes in Victoria have been given heritage protection because a prime minister was born in or lived at the property. These include nearby 10 Howard St in Kew, the former home of Robert Menzies, and 167 Cotham Road in Kew, the former home of Billy Hughes. The birthplace of John Curtin has also been given heritage protection.

City of Boroondara spokeswoman Deb Ganderton said an application to fully demolish the property had been lodged in April, but the council had only been alerted that the house was the birthplace of Mr Whitlam when it was nominated for the Victorian Heritage Register later in the month.

“Council investigated the association to Gough Whitlam and confirmed that the property was of local individual heritage significance,” she said.

“A request … was subsequently lodged with the Minister for Planning for interim heritage protection of the property on 7 May, 2014.

“That request was refused by the officers of the Department of Transport, Planning and Local Infrastructure under delegation from the Minister for Planning on 17 September, 2014.”

Ms Ganderton said a demolition permit was issued by a private building surveyor on October 14, just a week before Mr Whitlam passed away.

Local residents said they would be heartbroken to lose the property. “It’s sad to lose these places of local significance, but it seems we have lost the fight,” said one neighbour. “Instead we will have another large, bland building on the street.”

Jellis Craig’s Peter Batrouney said he was unaware of the property’s historical significance when he sold the three-bedroom early-Edwardian quietly off-market for $3.3 million last November.

“There was no heritage overlay on it when we sold it,” he said.

“The owner mentioned that there was some history to do with Gough Whitlam being in the house.

“That’s all I knew about it.”

Work has already begun on the demolition of garden surrounding the house, which has stood empty since it was sold.

Under Foreign Investment Review Board rules, a foreign buyer has two years to demolish an existing home to make way for a new dwelling.

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Tackling child abuse

MILDURA’S Sexual Offences and Child Abuse Investigation Team (SOCIT) continues to seek the best path for child abuse and sexual assault victims, Mildura Police Det Norm Tink said.

SUCCESS: Mildura police SOCIT Detective Sergeant Norm Tink and Mallee Sexual Assault Unit and Mallee Domestic Violence Service chief executive Joanne Sheehan-Paterson.Picture: Carmel Zaccone

Since the mutli-service unit started seven years ago, there has been a 30 per cent reduction in withdrawn complaints by victims of sexual assault or child abuse in the region.

Det Sergeant Tink said the unit’s success was due to the combined agency approach in dealing with victims.

In 2007 Victoria Police launched two pilot SOCIT’s to run as multi-discipline centres in Victoria, combining with other services to assist victims of sexual assault and child abuse.

One was established in Mildura, while a second was set up in Frankston – both locations chosen due to high rates of child abuse and sexual assault.

Mildura’s SOCIT was then restructured, moving from Mildura Police Station to Mallee Sexual Assault Unit and Domestic Violence Service at Lime Avenue.

Det Sgt Tink said being in a private location with the services of Mallee Sexual Assault Unit and Mallee Domestic Violence Service, enabled them to deal with victims from start to finish, and provide ongoing counselling after a court case was over.

He said this model wasn’t about reducing crime, because sexual assaults were individual and one-on-one, and police couldn’t be pro-active with such acts.

He said rather it was about providing a better service by police to support thevictims.

“It’s all done here. Counselling, forensic examinations interviews with kids and involvement with police,” Det Sgt Tink said.

“Before, victims would have to walk into the police station with other people around them, and deal with multiple police officers who weren’t specially trained to deal with them.

“A Deakin University evaluation (of the model) highlighted that because you have dedicated people working with these victims from start to finish, they tend to get better outcomes at court and better outcomes from the victims perspective.”

He said in 2013/2014 there were 4000 children sexually assaulted in Victoria, with 30 per cent under 10 years old.

Out of 4000, 41 of those were recorded in Mildura.

For more of this story, purchase your copy of Wednesday’s Sunraysia Daily 22/10/2014.To subscribe to our Digital Edition Click here

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TOPICS: Cookie dough a Recipe to Riches

AJ Mills’s cookie chunk dough won on Recipe to Riches on Tuesday night. AJ Mills’ kids always suspected she made a cracking cookie dough, and the Waratah mother-of-three hopes Novocastrians won’t be able to get enough of it – at least for the next week.

Her famed (among family and friends) chocolate chunk dough won last night’s episode of Ten’s Recipe to Riches, where contestants vie to turn their family recipes into top-sellers at Woolworths.

The supermarket giant will now sell the dough for seven days to gauge its popularity, with the overall series winner to be awarded a coveted permanent place on the shelves.

‘‘I have great memories of being in the kitchen with my mother,’’ AJ, 44, told Topics.

‘‘And all of those memories have gone into this cookie dough.’’

The treat is based on a recipe AJ found one day jotted among her grandmother’s possessions. Her mother, who died as a result of breast cancer when AJ was 24, crafted her own version and now the Laser Plumbing office manager makes it at home with her kids Jesse, Leeca and Ben.

She’ll be spruiking her winning wares at Woolies Marketown at 9.30am today. Victorian Garth Midgely won the first series of Recipe to Riches in January with his ingenius creation Chocorn.

THERE is a house in Carrington – a reader tells us, following yesterday’s news that Gough had died – called Whitlam House.

The revered former PM visited the neighbourhood in 1997, more than two decades after his immortal words on the steps of Parliament House, to unveil a plaque.

‘‘Whitlam House was opened by the Hon. EG Whitlam AC, QC, and blessed by Roger Herft, Eleventh Bishop of Newcastle, 21 November 1997,’’ it reads.

The brick one-storey was dedicated to the Missions to Seamen (now Seafarers), and our source tells us a big crowd gathered that day.

There also used to be a mural of the Great Man at Don Beppino’s Italian restaurant in Merewether, painted decades ago by the former part-owner Giuseppe Risicato.

Gough Whitlam standing in front of a portrait “Il Padrino” (The Godfather) painted by local artist Guiseppi Riscato. The portrait used to hang on the walls of the Don Peppino Italian restaurant in Merewether. Picture: Allan Jolly.

MELBOURNE City hosted Newcastle on Sunday in their first home game since rising from the ashes of the Melbourne Heart and, apart from the visitors relinquishing a one-nil lead at the death, all went well. With one exception.

The 15,000-strong crowd got what it wanted when star David Villa lashed in a late equaliser, but confusion reined as the teams were announced before kick-off.

According to the big screen, Kew Jaliens was suddenly in midfield, Marcos Flores shifted to the back and, weirdest of all, keeper Mark Birighitti came up as a striker. It’s to their credit that the players didn’t collectively demand: ‘‘don’t you know who I am?’’

As Villa’s strike bobbled cruelly into the net despite the Jets gloveman getting a hand to it, Birighitti might have wished he was playing up front.

​Email Tim [email protected]南京夜网.au or tweet @TimConnell or phone 4979 5944

Year-long wait for landline angers Mudgee resident

There are Mid-Western Region residents feeling let down by the delayed National Broadband Network roll-out yet some are struggling to establish a basic home phone connection.

Residents who have moved in to new housing estates at Mudgee and Gulgong are waiting, in some cases, between seven and 12 months to secure their landline connections through Telstra.

This means many households in the region are going without a “satisfactory” internet service, having to connect online via mobile phones or wireless devices which can be an expensive exercise.

Moving in to a new estate along Doug Gudgeon Drive last November, Mudgee resident Joanne Ruming and her partner didn’t expect a wait of 12 months to establish a landline connection for internet use at home.

“When we moved in we brought with us a Telstra T-Box but now that hasn’t really been any use to us,” she said.

“We have purchased a wireless device and that costs us around $80 a month but it is sub-standard.”

In a statement to Ms Ruming, Telstra has said further work is required from Melton Road down Doug Gudgeon Drive as the “pit and pipe” infrastructure “wasn’t to specifications”.

When the respective housing estate was being built, developers employed a third party to install initial telecommunications infrastructure. However only conduits were laid, not the required cabling for connections which is to be provided by whichever telecommunications company acquires the “pit and pipe”.

A third party may also be hired to do this installation months after they laid the original conduits.

In a statement to The Weekly, a Telstra spokesman said the company “was in the process of acquiring part of the pit and pipe network to connect it back to the wider Telstra network.”

“Once successfully acquired, Telstra will cable the pit and pipe and connect the houses [on Doug Gudgeon Drive] to the wider Telstra network giving residents access to voice and data services.”

No time frame was given as to when this work would be completed. Telstra did not answer as to whether 12 months was an extraordinary time waiting for a home phone connection.

In the letter to Ms Ruming, Telstra has said should it need to amend council property that civil works would need approval from council however this apparently does not stop the “to-ing and fro-ing” of processing the requirements for installation.

The Weekly understands there are other new housing developments in the Mid-Western Region which have experienced similar problems and residents have waited months for connections to a landline service.

Once connected, residents then have to wait and see if a port is available for their broadband service.

In June another 170 ADSL2 broadband ports were opened by Telstra at the Mudgee exchange.

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Brothers 3 to pursue music dream, despite X-Factor disappointment

Brothers 3, Shardyn, Tayzin and Makirum Fahey-Leigh, pictured with mentor Dannii Minogue during the X Factor Australia final on Monday night.Unfortunately, it wasn’t quite the fairytale ending Brothers 3 and Mudgee were hoping for on Monday night, with the local trio finishing third on the latest season of X-Factor Australia.

However, the Fahey-Leigh brothers won’t be leaving the Australia music scene any time soon, with plans to continue doing what they love and hopefully making a career from it.

“We’re definitely not going anywhere soon,” Tayzin said.

The X-Factor winner was announced at the end of a two-and-a-half hour finale featuring performances from Guy Sebastian, Jessica Mauboy, Olly Murs, and country pop powerhouse Taylor Swift – but to the disappointment of fans and Mid-Western Region residents, the boys from Mudgee finished their X Factor journey earlier in the show.

“We’d like to thank everyone who supported us, our family, our fans, everyone behind the scenes, and Dannii,” Makirum said.

Shardyn, Tayzin and Makirum Fahey-Leigh made their way onto the live shows after being chosen by the public as the wild card entry, and ever since then have done enough to impress the Australian public to have never been in the bottom two.

That run came to an end at the wrong time and Brothers 3 were told they were not in the X Factor top two halfway through Monday night’s show.

“X Factor has been the most amazing experience of our lives. Danni is a great mentor and being on the X Factor has actually made us closer,” Makirum said.

“We never imagined we could make it this far and it’s just been an amazing journey.”

“We came into this competition as three brothers who sang on the farm. And we’ve gone from singing on the farm to performing in front of Australia. It’s crazy,” Tayzin added.

Brothers 3 performed their audition song, Taylor Swift’s Safe and Sound, a duet with Guy Sebastian, and their winner’s single The Lucky Ones – a song that had the judges laughing and dancing in their seats from beginning to end.

“Not only were your performances great, but you’ve got a hit song. The country vibe you have is in right now, and I’m loving it. I’ve got to hear it on the radio, that song is incredible,” Redfoo said of The Lucky Ones.

A positives to come from the final two X Factor episodes on Sunday and Monday night’s was the coverage the Mudgee region received on national television.

The town was featured on screen for a few minutes after filming took place last Wednesday, and featured a visit to the boys’ farm,sweeping shots of the local region, and the street parade and concert at Parklands in front of hundreds of Brothers 3 fans.

“I literally knew nothing about Mudgee beforehand, and I’m so glad the boys have introduced me to the town. It’s city chic with country char, and it’s so beautiful I’m definitely planning a family trip back there,” Ms Minogue said.

Mid-Western Regional mayor Des Kennedy said he was very happy with the footage shown and couldn’t have hoped for something better for the region.

Brothers 3, and Dean Ray, were beaten to the top spot by 15-year-old Glendenning singer, Marlisa Punzalan, who received a recording contact with Sony Music Australia and the chance to open for Guy Sebastian on his latest Australian tour.

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Parking officer threatened with sword in Mudgee carpark

Mudgee police search the perimeter of a Byron Place property on Thursday after threats were made against a Council ranger. PHOTO: DARREN SNYDER 171014/ds police/4747Byron Place car park became a hive of activity on Thursday afternoon when local police arrested a 49-year-old Mudgee man.

It is alleged at about 1.25pm a Mid-Western Regional Council ranger was performing duties in the car park when he was threatened by the man wielding a samurai sword.

Five police vehicles were immediately on the scene and the offender was arrested. The man was taken to Mudgee Police Station where he was charged with two counts of possessing a knife in a public place, intimidation, and using a weapon to commit an indictable offence. The surrounding area and a vehicle were also searched.

The 49-year-old will attend Mudgee Local Court on December 17.

As the incident occurred during shopping hours, police are asking for anyone who saw what happened to contact Mudgee Police Station on 6372 8599.

“If you saw this incident please help us rid our area of this violent behaviour, we are waiting for your call,” a police spokesman said.

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Money for Arts

GIVERS: Anita Bowen, chairperson of Foundation Barossa, David Thomas (OAM), founder of Cellarmasters Wines, Dorrien Estate and The Thomas Foundation and Margaret Lehmann. Two major financial announcements were made at a fundraising lunch held by Foundation Barossa last Thursday, October 16, which could see funding for the support of the arts and education last into perpetuity.

The luncheon, held at the Old Redemption Cellar at Peter Lehmann Winery, was the setting for the announcements, which could see up to $1m raised.

The Lehmann Hess Foundation generously has donated $200,000 to the cause, while David Thomas (OAM), founder of Cellarmasters Wines, Dorrien Estate and The Thomas Foundation, announced a dollar for dollar challenge grant of $250,000.

“For me it’s about putting the money with causes you can trust, like Foundation Barossa, which is a safe guardian,” Margaret Lehmann said.

“The intention of the trust is to encourage, nurture and sustain the Barossa’s cultural identity.

“Peter (Lehmann) was always particularly interested in the arts.”

As for Mr Thomas’ generous offer, he was expecting $50,000 of the target to be reached with pledges from the 180-strong audience at the fundraiser, with more than $40,000 pledged.

He stood up on the stage and not only said he expected people in the room to help match the grant, he “demanded” it.

“I want to see the million dollar mark reached, within the next two years,” Mr Thomas said.

“And I want to then shake hands with the men and women who will help make this happen.”

Anita Bowen, chairperson of Foundation Barossa said she is overjoyed and overwhelmed at the response to the announcement.

“This is such a landmark for our organisation and a Trust such as this is so important to the Barossa and our way of life,” Anita said.

“Our target for this fund is $750,000 and in one day, we are, in effect, more than halfway there with in excess of $500,000 already raised. It’s an amazing expression of confidence and Barossa generosity.”

Application will be made to have the Peter Lehmann Cultural and Education Trust included on the Register of Cultural Organisations.

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Nominate now for Variety scholarships

Talented: 18-year-old Ritchell Lim says Variety WA has changed her life by helping her get closer to fulfilling her dream as a singer, songwriter and pianist.

VARIETY, the children’s charity is seeking nominations for the 2015 Variety Scholarships.

The scholarships assist young people under 18 years of age living with illness, disability or disadvantage to discover their potential in the fields of arts, sport or education.

Variety WA chief executive officer Michael Pailthorpe said the scholarships could be life-changing for local youth in need.

“We are thrilled to offer this opportunity to children and young people who might not otherwise have the means to develop their talents and follow their dreams,” he said.

Scholarship applications close at midnight on December 12 and to apply or for more information visit www.varietywa.org.au

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Northern Jets snare Temora premiership duo

HEADED HOME: Nitschke-Schmidt Medallist Sam Fisher has signed with Northern Jets after four years with Farrer League rival Temora. Picture: Michael Frogley


TEMORA premiership hero Sam Fisher has departed the Kangaroos to return home to Farrer League rivals Northern Jets as assistant coach.

A month after guiding Temora to a third consecutive Farrer League premiership, Fisher has decided to return to his home club and sign with the Jets.

In a recruiting coup for the Jets, they have also signed speedy Temora forward Brad Moye.

The pair played in Temora’s past three Farrer League premierships.

Fisher endured an injury interrupted season but returned to play an integral part in Temora’s premiership claim and won the Nitschke-Schmidt Medal for best-on-ground in the grand final.

Fisher, 23, told The Daily Advertser it was not an easy decision to make.

“It was a very tough call,” Fisher said.

“I’ve obviously been at Temora for four years playing footy and I’ve made a lot of good mates winning three premierships.

“Making the call to go home was a pretty hard call, especially from a club that gives you that sort of success.”

The decision to return to the Jets has a lot to do with family for Fisher.

He now gets the opportunity to join brothers Jack and Ned at the Jets.

“I’m very excited,” he said.

“I’ll get to play with my younger brother Jack for the first time in first grade together and hopefully our other brother Ned can get up there and play firsts as well.

“Mitch and Lenny Haddrill are my first cousins too, so to play with all of them will be pretty exciting.”

The signing of Fisher and Moye is a strong start to the off-season for the Jets, who have already retained its playing list from this year.

SWITCHING TEAMS: Temora speedster Brad Moye (right) has signed with Farrer League rival Northern Jets. Picture: Les Smith

Moye has kicked 101 goals over the past three seasons for Temora.

Jets official Terry Walker is happy with the club’s first two signings.

“Sam’s pretty excited about it and so are we, to have him coming home after three flags and being pretty successful,” Walker said.

“Brad will be good for us too. He’s got a lot of pace, which is what we’ve been lacking.

“He kicks quite a few goals for a flank, wing type.”

The Jets met again on Tuesday night to finalise its position surrounding a replacement for outgoing coach Stu Hutchins.

Walker hopes the Jets will be able to make an announcement in coming days.

Canberra-based players Len Haddrill, Dane Keenes and Declan O’Rourke have all re-signed for another season at the Jets.

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Motorbike safety a priority in South West

Following recent motorbike fatalities on and off South West roads, motorbike enthusiasts are being urged to adhere to extra safety precautions.FOLLOWING recent motorbike fatalities on and off South West roads, motorbike enthusiasts are being urged to adhere to extra safety precautions.

The death toll for motorbike riders and passengers has reached a total of 31 for 2014, and 28 including vehicles over the last month alone.

Back in April the Mail printed a story listing the riskiest times to ride a motorcycle and this message is now more prevalent than ever.

A review of fatal and serious injury motorcycle crashes in WA from 1995 to 2014 indicated that riders were most at risk between 3 and 6pm Monday to Thursday and between 6 and 9pm on Fridays.

Busselton’s officer in charge Senior Sergeant Steve Principe said fatal motorbike crashes tended to occur on the more winding and sweeping country roads for a number of reasons.

One of those reasons was due to roads often being misjudged and Senior Sergeant Principe listed a few key things to remember when riding.

“Safety gear is imperative, ensure helmets are worn at all times whilst riding as well as protective clothing,” he said.

“Also ensure your bike is road-worthy and check your brakes and tyres.”

Senior Sergeant Principe added that riders should assume other road users could not see them.

“Ride with your lights on at all times and take extra care at intersections,” he said.

He added that riders should always drive to the weather conditions as road surfaces could change.

The latest fatality was a 15-year-old boy who suffered severe head injuries after he was involved in an off-road motorcycle crash with his 15-year-old male cousin when their bikes collided head-on on October 5.

The other 15-year-old boy also received extensive injuries and was takento Busselton Hospital where he was thentransferred to Royal Perth Hospital for further treatment.

WA Police Assistant Commissioner Nick Anticich addressed the State’s road toll this week, saying that more needed to be done.

“At the rate this is going it is going to be a shocking year for road fatals,” he said.

“It comes down to social conscience for drivers on our roads.”

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