Community News - December 2013 

 December 22 - 28, 2013: Issue 142

 Mayoral Christmas Greeting 2013 

As we approach the festive season and the closing of another year, it’s a good time to reflect on our achievements. Over the year, the staff and councillors of Pittwater Council have achieved several outcomes for our community. 
We’ve handled some significant new initiatives including Enliven Pittwater, a program put together with local business community to help invigorate our village centres with events, arts, music, pop-up stores and a free mobile phone app. 
We were also nominated as a finalist in the highly regarded AR Bluett Award, which recognises the NSW council considered to have made the greatest relative progress during that year. 
This year has seen much discussion on planning and local government reforms which we have been closely involved with, and as a community we have stepped up and put our thoughts forward what we want for Pittwater. 
On the subject of planning, Pittwater Council has been working in consultation with our community on significant planning and infrastructure projects including Ingleside, the remaining undeveloped land in Warriewood Valley and the new Local Environmental Plan for Pittwater. 
Earlier in the year we adopted the Warriewood Valley Strategic Review to set the guidelines for future development in the area. We’re currently in the midst of the ‘precinct planning’ process for Ingleside which will continue into next year with a view to a land release in the next 18 months. 
When looking back on the year it’s rewarding to see how much has been accomplished with our recreational and urban spaces. 
Highlights include the upgrade to Avalon Beach Surf club and surrounds, a new playground in Warriewood and upgraded cabins at Lakeside Holiday. 
Commuters from Scotland Island and the Western foreshore have benefited from commuter wharf upgrades, and users of our sports fields have benefited from returfing, irrigation and new drainage at a number of fields including Porters Reserve, Newport, Hitchcock Park Avalon and at Narrabeen Sports High. 
On an environmental note, we’ve improved our emissions by installing solar panels at various sites including Mona Vale Library (29kW) Avalon Recreation Centre (26kW) and Boondah Operations Centre (20kW). Energy efficient LED lights have also been installed at Yellow Brick Road, Avalon, the Pelican Path North Narrabeen and at the North Narrabeen Park & Ride car park. 
Pittwater’s coastal areas and headlands have been maintained and restored by our Bushcare team and volunteers and school children across the beaches have enjoyed many eco-friendly events hosted by the Coastal Environment Centre. 
Mona Vale Library has educated, informed and entertained us with author Talks, photographic displays, Halloween hijinks, technology workshops and more! They’ve also recently implemented an automated system with all books now micro chipped for easy check out and check in. These initiatives are transforming our library from a reading space to a community hub.

As we look forward to 2014 and beyond… into 2025 we consider how we can further improve, support and enhance areas of our community. Through Pittwater 2025 – Our Community Strategic plan we will work together to influence our future, while continuing to recognise and protect our past. 
On behalf of the Councillors and staff of Pittwater Council, I wish you and your families a happy and safe Christmas and a very prosperous new year! 
To get in touch with me personally, contact my office on 9970 1104, email me at or viaTwitter@J_townsend_Pitt 
Jacqueline Townsend 
For information on operating hours over the Christmas / New Year period visit : 

snowmen playing animated

 Christmas is a time of great joy and celebration.
It’s also an important time for families, friends and colleagues to reflect upon the year that’s past, give thanks to those that have provided support and compassion and plan together for the year ahead.
As a community we have so much to be grateful for and so many people to thank for helping make Pittwater such a magnificent place to live. We know that communities don’t just happen, they need to be created, shaped and preserved and Pittwater is a shining example.
This Christmas I encourage everyone to consider and appreciate the things we often take for granted, extend support to those in our community less fortunate and take time to relax and enjoy the wonderful environment in which we live.
I wish everyone in Pittwater a very Merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous New Year.
Rob Stokes MP
Member for Pittwater

On Behalf of Southern Cross Wildlife Care thank you to all of our friends and devoted supporters.  Without you and your generosity & kindness, we could not do what we do for wildlife.

Our incredible vet (Howard Ralph) never turns any wild creature away and battles to save each and every life no matter how hopeless the situation may appear. Your help and compassion makes it all happen, so please continue to support us in 2014 and we hope to see you at our fundraisers and workshops. Drive safely over Xmas in oder to preserve your life, your families and our precious wildlife.

Seasons Greeting from all at Southern Cross Wildlife Care
Peace and goodwill to all living creatures

NB: I can be contacted over Christmas on Mobile: 0409 404570 ( Lindy Stacker)

Christmas Greetings from Pittwater Environmental Foundation. You can give our unique Pittwater environment a tax deductible Christmas present! Go

NBI would like to wish everyone in Pittwater and on the Northern Beaches a wonderful Christmas and a healthy and prosperous 2014.

The NBI office will close at 4:30pm on Tuesday, 24 December 2013 and reopen at 9am on Thursday 2 January 2014.

On behalf of the Committee of Pittwater Community Arts Inc. I am sending our best wishes for Christmas to you, Pittwater Online News and your readers.

We are very thankful for the Community support for all our events held during the year and look forward to another excellent year in 2014.
Kind regards
Lorrie Morgan 

Marine Rescue Broken Bay would like to wish all the very best for Christmas and for the New Year.

We would like to remind those going on the water this season to check your engine, battery and safety gear before you proceed on the water. If the battery is suspect do not proceed as it will probably let you down when you try and start the engine to return.  If you don't have VHF channel 16 then make sure your mobile phone is fully charged.

Always wear your lifejackets irrespective of the weather.  For more information contact Marine Rescue Broken Bay  at  "" or ring 9999 3554  and have a safe and happy trip on the water.

Some information about Marine Rescue’s Broken Bay’s activities for the year 2013:

Total number of assists was 93.
The number of Marine Radio Safety Service members was 114
The number of new  members trained on the Provisional Watch  11.
The number of boaters tested for their Boat License was 21.
The number of Watch keeping hours standing by on call to assist was over 10,000 hours
The number of Maintenance days of three members was 52 days.

Below: Unit Commander Keren Muir-McCarey presents the boat keys to the winner of this year’s raffle Joel Taylor. Picture by Michael Mannington

The Mona Vale Hospital Auxiliary would like to thank our Pittwater residents for their generosity this year in supporting our stalls, raffles and events. 

Thanks to you the hospital has been able to purchase around $300,000 worth of medical equipment for their use. 

We hope you all have a happy Christmas and a healthy 2014 and we will be working hard again for the hospital.

Christmas Greetings from Pittwater Natural Heritage Association to all who love our wonderful Pittwater natural environment.

Make a 2014 New Year resolution to: plant a native tree, put up a nest box, get rid of garden weeds, help look after the bush - aren't we lucky to live where we can help look after our world!

I would just like to thank our many hard working volunteers for all the help and care they show all our gorgeous dogs. They make their lives that little bit special and make them feel wanted again.DoggieRescue could not survive without you!
This Christmas do something special – foster or adopt an Oldie but a Goodie and see how quickly a doggie can worm his way into your heart and transform your life! Visit to see our dogs.
Monika Biernacki,au

The Avalon Craft Cottage members would like to wish all their customers, friends and supporters a very very Happy Christmas.

Thank you everybody for you support during 2013… we look forward to catching up with everyone in the New Year.

Warm regards
Maureen Darcy-Smith 

Merry Christmas from the Team at Easy Transport Manly Warringah Pittwater

We close from Monday 23/12 and will be back on Monday 6/1/14.

Any  transport enquiry is to contact us back on Monday 6/1/14.

Seasons Greetings!

Some dates for your new 2014 calendar ...
1. February 3rd - Forum on new dredging proposals for Narrabeen Lagoon
Venue - Academy of Sport at 7pm.  Book by reply to this email:

2. March 3rd - Clean up Australia Day.  Venue to be advised.

3. Paddles and bushwalks for early 2014 in the December newsletter (PDF 1.43 MB).

Happy new year!
Judith Bennett
Friends of Narrabeen Lagoon Catchment

Merry Christmas from Manly Art Gallery & Museum

Please note
Manly Art Gallery & Museum will be closed from 25 December and reopen 2 January 2014.



The Council has decided this week to approve a plan for a new 120 space car park at McCarrs Creek Road, Church Point.  The plan will also see a realignment of the road, a new seawall and a new boardwalk to improve safety for pedestrians and motorists.

In 2009 a Plan of Management was adopted for Church Point which included improvements to infrastructure and open space and a new car park. Since then a new pontoon wharf and replacement of the fixed wharf have occurred, along with an upgrade to the commuter wharf.

Council Director Chris Hunt said the next step in implementing the Church Point Plan of Management would be the McCarrs Creek Road component.

The Council considered three design options at last night’s meeting which also includes the road realignment, new seawall and pedestrian boardwalk. Options 1 and 2 were originally included in the Church Point Plan of Management.

• Option 1 - a 60 space car park at road level with front or rear to kerb parking - $5.4 million 

• Option 2 -  a 120 space car park with 60 car spaces at road level plus 60 car spaces on a single deck above -  $7.4 million 

• Option 3 - a 60 space car park (adjusted to 39 spaces) presented by Church Point Friends Group - $5.4 million.

Acting General Manager Steve Evans said that following detailed analysis and community feedback, Option 2 provided the best triple bottom line outcome that takes into account environmental, social and economic considerations. 

“The car park component of the project is to be financed via a loan repaid by user pays income.”

He said the car park would be suitably landscaped with a façade of recycled wharf timbers in keeping with the area’s maritime history.

“The Council will now move forward with this project and will apply for a low interest rate loan under the State Government’s LIRS assistance program.” he said.

For more information about the car park 

 Warning on Hoax E-waste Kerbside Collection Notices

The SHOROC partner councils (Manly, Mosman, Pittwater and Warringah) are advising Northern Beaches residents to be wary of hoax letterbox notices attempting to trick households into placing their unwanted electrical equipment on the kerb for a collection that never occurs.

Thousands of households in Mosman recently received fake flyers asking residents to place televisions, computers and other electrical appliances on their kerb for collection.

The organisers of this bogus collection then cherrypicked valuable items and cut off electrical cords for the copper and left the rest which residents then had to clean up themselves.

SHOROC President and Mayor Pittwater Jacqueline Townsend noted that the timing of this activity around the analog television signal switch-off in Sydney on 3 December and the upcoming end-of-year sales may encourage unscrupulous people to conduct similar scams over the holiday period.

“Our SHOROC councils recently flagged television disposal options to their communities following the analog switch-off noting that they should not put televisions in bins and never leave them on the kerb.

“Residents can keep their old televisions and purchase a digital set-top box, swap their old televisions when purchasing new ones at participating retailers or recycle their televisions for free at Kimbriki and Belrose resource recovery centres or other approved drop-off points that can be found at,” Cr Townsend said.

 Wildlife Carer looking for Orphan Possum Homes

Jenny Hermann, Wires Wildlife Carer and longstanding Bushcare volunteer, is looking for new homes for six very cute little Brushtail possum orphans.

The ideal home would be an area with some Australian native trees and not too close to a busy road. 

The possums come with their own house that Jenny is happy to put up for you. Ideally, the possums will arrive in pairs so that they have familiar company with which to start their new lives. If you have other adult Brushtail or Ringtail possums around, they don’t mind the babies, however if there are lots of possums around, a new pair may be too much.

Your surrogate role is to put some fruit out for them each night for a couple of weeks until they familiarise themselves with their new surrounds and learn to forage for themselves. Kids love going out to feed them at night and it’s a great education for them and of course you! If you’re lucky and they find your balcony or porch, you can feed them from there (that’s if you want to keep them around!).

Jenny currently has two babies and an adult with a baby on her back that visit her home most nights, hence too many possums to keep along with the ready-to-release new ones.

If you consider your home and bush surrounds are eligible to nurture these lucky little possums orphans, please contact Jenny by email

It could just be the ideal environmentally friendly Christmas present for them and you!

 Mona Vale Hospital Auxiliary Has Christmas Wrapped!

The wonderful volunteer members of Mona Vale Hospital Auxiliary are holding a gift wrapping and bric-a-brac stall at Pittwater Place, Mona Vale from next Monday, 16th December until  the following Monday, 23rd December.  Located within the  old Noni B shop, the 'pop up' shop will run from 9am to 4pm.

Gifts on offer range from Bric-a-brac to beautiful plates and tableware.

Above: MVHA members Barbara and Pauline setting up shop! Pictures by Michael Mannington.



A new website – - has been launched to involve the Pittwater community in future planning for Ingleside, ahead of several community workshops planned in early 2014. Pittwater Mayor Jacqui Townsend said planning was underway and the community was invited to help develop a vision for Ingleside by contributing ideas and comments. 

“We’re aiming for a sustainable community in Ingleside that has a triple-bottom-line approach to development, addressing environmental, social and economic aspects.” 

The website contains a live discussion forum, invites votes on ideas and also lets residents ‘pin’ their comments on a map of the area. 

The NSW Department of Planning & Infrastructure, UrbanGrowth NSW and the Council are conducting a ‘precinct planning’ process for Ingleside which is expected to take around 18 months.

Precinct planning takes a holistic approach to a land release, taking into account factors such as the local environment, community consultation, infrastructure requirements, housing needs and economic viability. 

Mayor Townsend said the website was interactive to encourage the community to have their say on Ingleside’s future.

“Early next year, we will move into more consultation with the community to further develop the vision for Ingleside.”

“This will be done through ‘enquiry by design’ workshops, which will help the public voice their ideas under the guidance of architects and town planners.”

More information on the workshops will be made available early next year.

Mayor Townsend said the Council had formed an Ingleside Community Reference Group composed of 15 residents, landowners and business-owners, Councillors and planning staff.

The reference group is intended to give community input to the precinct planning process and also distribute information about the process to local networks.

“The group is meeting regularly and is particularly interested in seeing sustainable development as the hallmark of any future land release,” the Mayor said.

 New Bus Route Secured For Warriewood Valley - 17 December 2013

Member for Pittwater Rob Stokes today said he is delighted to have secured a new express bus route for the Warriewood Valley. In October this year the importance of improved bus services for the Warriewood Valley’s growing population was raised in State Parliament, along with a request that the introduction of an express route be prioritised by Sydney Buses. 

NSW Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian has responded to this request and confirmed a new E85 express route will commence in the first quarter of next year and include four daily trips in the morning, arriving at Wynyard between 7:30am and 9:00am, and 6 return evening trips departing from 3:30pm. 

The new E85 service will follow the current L85 route through the Warriewood Valley and then on to Wynyard – but with fewer stops. There will be no change to the current L85 timetable nor its stopping pattern. 

“This is a big win for residents in the Warriewood Valley,” Rob Stokes said today.

“The Warriewood Valley is our community’s fastest growth area and home to hundreds of daily commuters. A new express route is exactly what’s needed and will provide quicker and more convenient journeys. 

“Extra buses through the Warriewood Valley will also reduce pressure on other Pittwater services and have flow on benefits for all local commuters. More commuters on buses means less congestion on our roads and faster journey times.

“It’s vital the Warriewood Valley’s growth is matched by improvements to infrastructure and services and extra transport options are an important part of this process. 

“I’m delighted by the Minister’s swift response and look forward to the new express services commencing early next year,” Rob Stokes said.

Further good news for Pittwater commuters has also been announced with the NSW Government confirming MyBus3single journey tickets and MyBus3 TravelTens will not be included amongst transport fares to see modest increases from 5 January next year


“amid the Christmas chaos, I'd found real, 'loosely woven' joy.”

This quote from the following review by Paul Cruise gives us the essence of “THE LIVING YEARS”    the XMAS  concert  given in Avalon  on the 15th Dec . by Loosely Woven musicians led by Wayne Richmond.   The concert raised almost  $700 for  Avalon Group of Amnesty International.

An enthusiastic  audience of over 90 were enthralled by the music, and  signed letters in support of prisoners of conscience in several countries  (Burma, Mexico, Cambodia, Belarus, and Ethiopia).   These were part of Amnesty's Write for Rights campaign and have helped to take  the Australian contribution  (so far)to  1.3 79 million letters.

Wayne and Gail - Everybody Loves a Lover

It is wonderful to see that ordinary people can help to achieve just solutions  around the world. Thank you Loosely Woven, on behalf of the Avalon Group of  AMNESTY INT.

Many commented  also  on the great  refreshments provided by Avalon Baptist Church  and the AIA Group.  

Review of  “The Living Years”  by  Paul Cruise

There's one sure thing about a Loosely Woven performance: fun will be had. Their Christmas offering, 'The Living Years', supplied mirth aplenty while avoiding the shallow, contrived frivolity that can bedevil the festive season. The group's trusty blend of familiar carols, pop classics, social commentary and novelty numbers somehow never fails to move and entertain, without becoming trite and predictable. Who else would turn "Rawhide" into "Yuletide" or pair a didgeridoo with a Bob Marley song? 

The core ensemble has become a tight and powerful unit. Despite the absence of several key members , they handled the shifting dynamics of the varied repertoire with aplomb. David Wilson's heartfelt rendition of Phil Coulter's delicate "Remember Me" drew palpable emotion from the audience, while Kristy Dickson kicked gluteus maximus on the perennial stomper "Nutbush City Limits".

Trumpeter Cathy Kirk, fiddler Kazu Milne and guitarist Greg Thompson were featured to great effect in their vocal showcases and on their instruments. There were touches of musical theatre (most notably from the evergreen Barbara Braithwaite) and a delightful,1920s-style version of George Harrison's "Something". 'Maybe ... what we need is what we're given', they sang, and afterwards, as the happy crowd dispersed into the night, I felt content - amid the Christmas chaos, I'd found real, 'loosely woven' joy.

Avalon Amnesty Group wish to thank Avalon Baptist Church for their generous support  in hosting  Loosely Woven concerts and for the help they thus give Amnesty in the mission of promoting global peace and justice. 

We also give heartfelt thanks to Wayne and Loosely Woven for their great music, and for their continuing work in raising money to help those who suffer injustice around the world.      

Kath Moody   (Avalon Amnesty Group)           

Signing Write for Rights letters

 Public comment sought on Energy Policy Issues Paper - 17 December 2013

Minister for Industry Ian Macfarlane has released an Issues Paper to begin consultation on the Australian Government’s Energy White Paper.

“This is an important step in the process of completing the Government’s Energy White Paper process,” Mr Macfarlane said.

“The Issues Paper is centred around reducing cost pressures on households and businesses, and will include matters such as security of energy supplies, regulatory reform and energy productivity.

“The Issues Paper also seeks comment on growth and investment to maintain Australia’s competitive position, trade and international relations, workforce productivity to meet ongoing industry demand and alternate sources of energy to diversify our energy mix.”

Industry and community input will inform possible policy approaches for a Green Paper, which will be released for consultation in May next year. Input on the Green Paper will then inform the final Energy White Paper, to be released later in 2014.

“The Energy White Paper will set out a coherent and integrated approach to energy policy to boost domestic market competition and productivity, maintain international competitiveness and grow our export base.”

Mr Macfarlane said the Government’s Energy White Paper will deliver stable energy policy and efficient and transparent markets that promote user choice and put downward pressure on energy costs.

The Energy White Paper will be produced in conjunction with other Government reviews including the development of the Eastern Australian Gas Supply Strategy to 2020.

Submissions on the Issues Paper must be made by 7 February 2014. The Issues Paper and details on the submission process are available at

The Mona Vale Hospital Jubilee Committee is on a Treasure Hunt  

Plans for the 50th  anniversary celebrations of Mona Vale Hospital are well underway, and the organising committee is on a treasure hunt for the first baby born at our hospital. 

The person we are hunting for will be around 50 years of age and will be celebrating a milestone along with Mona Vale Hospital on or around 22nd  of February 2014. 

We want you to be a part of a weekend full of festivities which will celebrate the golden jubilee of  the hospital. 

If you think you may be the treasure we are hunting please contact us at 

The celebrations begin on Friday 21st of February with a reunion dinner at the Pittwater RSL Club. 

This is followed by an ocean swim event, on Saturday 22nd, which will start and finish in front of the hospital. 

Also on Saturday there will be a Garden Fair in the hospital grounds. A great day of family entertainment and activities is guaranteed. An exhibition of past hospital uniforms, old photographs, and memorabilia will be a feature of Saturday’s celebrations. The traditional elements of a garden fair will include a variety of stalls, music, entertainment for the adults and children and a great range of food and refreshments. 

The fair will be followed, on Saturday night, by a celebration dinner at the Mona Vale Golf Club. On Sunday 23rd  a service will be held in the hospital’s chapel. 

For more information visit our website at www.mvhospitaljubilee.orgor our Facebook page. 

Please clear that weekend in your calendars. It is going to be big, with the organising committee pulling out all stops to make sure that this grand old lady of the northern beaches celebrates her 50th anniversary in the style that she deserves!

 Concept Designs Unveiled – Warringah Council -Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The long-awaited and much needed youth facility for the northern beaches is one step closer to being realised.

“This is the indoor facility that northern beaches’ youth have been waiting for,” said Warringah Mayor, Michael Regan.

“The concept design is incredibly exciting. This will be a beautiful, functional and sustainable building that a young and old alike can enjoy and be proud of.”

Features of the concept design include a curved roof that will be partially translucent to blend in with the environment and allow for natural lighting. Sustainable green walls will screen the carpark from the street.

The building will provide the following facilities:

Two multi-use sports courts; Community rooms and activity space;  Youth study and ‘hang out’ area; Café; Parking for 350 cars

The building will include a Police Citizens Youth Club.

Find out more and have your say.


Pittwater artists are invited to apply for a three month residency at the Eramboo Artist Environment from March to May 2014.

The residency is being run by Eramboo Artist Environment in partnership with Enliven Pittwater, an initiative of Pittwater Council.  

The residency will offer an artist the unique opportunity to develop his or her art practice in the supportive environment of Eramboo located in Terrey Hills.

 The successful artist will have free use of one of Eramboo’s artist studios for three months.  During this time, the artist will be able to tap into the professional development support and networks provided at Eramboo.  Eramboo’s artistic director Susan Milne said the residency program was a career accelerator for a talented local artist.  

“It provides them with space to create work, opportunities to connect with other artists and to engage in critical discourse,” said Ms Milne.

“The residency is geared towards creative people looking to further develop their art and career,” Ms Milne added.

The resident artist will have the opportunity to show work in one of Pittwater’s village centres.  Pittwater Mayor Jacqui Townsend said she was ‘excited to be giving a local artist the chance to develop creatively and have their completed work add to the vibrancy of our village centres.’

“We are looking forward to seeing the work produced, be it sculpture, installation, performance or another art form,” added Mayor Townsend.  Applications are open now and close on 31 January 2014. The successful applicant will be announced in February 2014.

Application forms and guidelines are available


Enliven Pittwater is spreading the Christmas cheer with some festive fun throughout our village centres. A charming Christmas ‘yarn bombing’ attack has occurred at Park Street, Mona Vale courtesy of the Woolly Wednesday knitting group from the library. 

Council’s Social, Community & Economic Coordinator Melinda Hewitt said the knitting group have embraced Council’s program to enliven Pittwater by producing ‘knit graffitti’ as part of their plan to bring people together through the art of knitting and crocheting.

Newport is playing host to a ‘Very Christo Christmas’ with a quirky art installation at the community centre. 

Ms Hewitt said the homage to the artist Christo would come in the shape of some large ‘Christmas gifts’ for the community to enjoy in the sculpture garden of the centre.

“Residents will also see the attractive Enliven Pittwater flags that are adding some festive cheer along Barrenjoey Road, Newport,” she said.

Avalon, Mona Vale and Newport Chambers of Commerce along with Enliven Pittwater are also supporting special Christmas window displays for shops throughout the villages.

“We are encouraging residents to get on board, by spotting their favourite window display and tagging it #enlivenPittwater,” said Ms Hewitt. “Also expect to hear singers and musicians performing your favourite carols, along with some festive coloured lights that will pop up around the villages.”

Ms Hewitt said the best way of keeping up-to-date on events throughout Pittwater is to download the free Enliven Pittwater app, available from the App Store and Google Play.

For more information about the Enliven Pittwater program visit

 Pittwater Offshore Newsletter Update 19/12/2013: click on Logo. Also has an Extensive Local Directory.

Scotland Island - Western Shores - Mackeral Beach

To contact Julian:

 Mona Vale Hospital Golden Jubilee Reunion Dinner 

As part of the Golden Jubilee celebrations for Mona Vale Hospital, a Reunion Dinner is being held at the Pittwater RSL Club on the evening of Friday February 21 2014. 

It will be an opportunity for anybody who has had anything to with Mona Vale Hospital over the last 50 years to meet up with old friends and colleagues. 

This includes former and current nurses and doctors, former and current support staff, former and current members of the Mona Vale Hospital Auxiliary and former members of the Mona Vale Hospital Younger Set. 

The dinner will be limited to the first 250 people to book. 

Above: Maryan Heffernan receiving prize at 1978 graduation ceremony (with proud mother) - one of the former nurses who will be attending the reunion dinner.

For information please contact Ian Lee on 02 9918 2900

Above: Maryan Heffernan receiving prize at 1978 graduation ceremony (with proud mother) - one of the former nurses who will be attending the reunion dinner.

 Councils reject 'greedy' new tax on properties  - 16 December 2013 from LGNSW

Local Government NSW (LGNSW) has rejected the proposal of a greedy new tax for all properties under two hectares in NSW by the Local Land Services Board of Chairs (BoC), which could impact nearly every household in NSW. President of Local Government NSW, Cr Keith Rhoades AFSM, said the submission made by the Local Land Services BoC is extremely alarming as it essentially recommends subjecting property owners who do not use Local Land Services to yet another tax, separate to their council rates.

"If accepted by the NSW Government, this tax has the potential to affect residents that live in metropolitan Sydney, as well as urban areas, townships and regional centres, many of whom have never even heard and do not use Local Land Services agriculturally based services", said Cr Rhoades.

"Furthermore many NSW councils already have Environmental levies in place to address natural resource management issues in their local area."

"Is the Local Land Services BoC suggesting that the residents of these councils pay not once, but twice, to manage the natural resources in their local area?"

"Many families already struggle to make ends meet and pay all their bills on time. They definitely don't need another tax placed upon them for services they don't use."  

"What's more, the submission recommends that councils collect this new tax despite the fact they have nothing to do with the operations of Local Land Services."

"Local Land Services haven't even starting operating yet and already the Board of Chairs is trying to pass the buck and get councils to do their dirty work and collect their rates. This is not on!"

"The presumption that councils have the capacity and administrative resources to collect another tax for the Government highlights just how little consultation the Local Land Services BoC has carried out on the issue." 

"Councils across NSW are sick of having State Government responsibilities foisted upon them and oppose being the Government's tax agent."   

"I call on the Independent Pricing and Regulatory (IPART) Tribunal and the NSW Government to reject the Local Land Services BoC submission."

LGNSW made a supplementary submission on Friday 13 December to IPART following the Local Land Services BoC recommendation. 

Genevieve Kelly (9) receiving her voucher this week on winning the Woolworths Avalon Christmas Colouring-in Competition‏

December 15 - 21, 2013: Issue 141 


Karen Baldwin General Manager of Royal Motor Yacht Club - Broken Bay

Karen Baldwin has tendered her resignation as General Manager of the Royal Motor Yacht Club Broken Bay. After 6 years in this very demanding role, including winning the first ever “Australian Club Marina of the Year’’ award in 2011, Karen has stated the time has come to change and focus more on time with family. 

A farewell for members and staff shall be held in January.

Many positive innovations and achievements under this lady's stewardship have kept the RMYC one of Pittwater's and Sydney's premier motor yacht clubs. Karen was also recognised for her industry standing with her appointment to the Marina Industry Association Board. 

Karen shall be our Profile of the Week in Issue 142.


New Police Graduates For The Northern Beaches - 13 December 2013

Member for Pittwater Rob Stokes today welcomed the NSW Government’s allocation of a further 14 graduate police officers to the Northern Beaches Local Area Command.

These new Probationary Constables were part of a graduating class of 157 officers that took part in today’s attestation ceremony at the NSW Police Academy in Goulburn. 

This allocation brings the total number of new Probationary Constables assigned to the northern beaches this year to 25 and come in addition to the 34 new officers assigned during 2012. 

“These new recruits will provide a welcome boost to our community and added support for our hard-working local officers, Rob Stokes said today.

“The contribution of our local police should never be underestimated – nor should the risks and dangers they face on a daily basis.  

“Policing is an enormously challenging role, so we’re lucky to have such dedicated and professional officers on the northern beaches. 

“Strengthened police resources are essential with our community continuing to grow and these new recruits are a key part of this process. 

“The recent amalgamation of the Northern Beaches and Manly commands is a positive move that will assist in attracting additional resources to our community and see more officers on the front line.

“I’ve been delighted by the continual flow of new police recruits assigned to the northern beaches over recent years and look forward to this continuing,” Rob Stokes said.


Avalon Alive – NEW Facebook page at:HERE

While standing in the crowd of several hundred people at the Avalon Bowling Club last night - all doing something for a fellow Avalonian - I thought it would be great to have a facebook page where we could share anything that encourages locals to enhance their lives.

It could be details of an event or function, a yoga class or teacher you like or simply a healthy tip you would like to pass on. It might be a group you train with, or a fantastic healthy meal you have cooked or eaten somewhere locally. it might be simply a photograph that will inspire.

Please share this page with anyone you know who would benefit by enhancing their lifestyle and that of others who live in this fantastic environment.

Christine Hopton.

Avalon Alive

An example:

Great news about the upcoming Avalon Beach Surf Swim on January 14th, 2014. We have a fantastic new naming sponsor in DMC and with them comes a new and exciting event. 

The DMC SWIM FINS-500 Invitational (A sprint 500 metre swim out and back around marker buoys with DMC SWIM Fins) will feature 2 divisions and run after the main

Ocean Swim event. Winners will be rewarded with a $250 cash winner-take-all prize.

So, not only will regular swimmers vie for top honours over the 1.5km course in their respective divisions the DMC SWIM FINS-500 will answer many questions of speed, strength, agility and surfing prowess from those who are used to endurance Ocean Swimming.

The Open Men’s and Open Women’s Divisions will be by invitation only and applications must be received before 31st Dec 2014 to be eligible.

The DMC SWIM FINS-500 competitors will need to start and finish holding their DMC SWIM Fins of which are exclusive to the event.

After the starter’s whistle competitors will need to be in at least ankle depth water before putting on their fins and must finish by crossing the line holding both fins.

DMC SWIM Fins are available from and will also be made available to all entrants on the day.


Well known volunteers Bert and Nan Rose from Narrabeen seen at Easy Transport Volunteers Christmas Lunch on Friday 13 December at Long Reef Golf Club. Bert has been volunteering at Easy Transport for five years as fleet coordinator as well as driving buses Volunteers at Easy Transport provide transport by bus or car between hospitals and medical facilities. When not driving buses Bert and Nan appear dancing or modelling in fashion shows at the Nelson Heather Centre.

Picture by Michael Mannington

 December 8 - 14, 2013: Issue 140


 Nina Curtis and Darren Bundock – 1st in Nacra 17

See Results HERE

Liesel Tesch Wins!!

Congratulations to Skud winners Liesl Tesch and Duncan McGregor and 2.4m silver medallist Matt Bugg!  - Australian Sailing Team: Sail Melbourne - Day 5- 

The ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne held at Sandringham Yacht Club, Melbourne, Australia was run from 2-8 December, the second stop of the 2013-14 ISAF Sailing World Cup series featured strong fleets across two Paralympic and ten Olympic events.



The Gallipoli Art Prize - Closes 18 March, 2014 - Winner announced Wed 23 April, 2014 at Gallipoli Memorial Club in Sydney.

The Gallipoli Memorial Club is calling on Australian, New Zealand and Turkish artists to submit paintings to the $20,000 Gallipoli Art Prize to commemorate the spirit of the 1945 Gallipoli campaign. 

Gaining recognition as one of Australia’s major art prizes, The Gallipoli Art Prize Competition commenced in 2006 and will be conducted annually up to and including the 2015 Centenary Year. Artworks in the competition do not need to reflect warfare or the Gallipoli conflict. Rather, the $20,000 prize is awarded to the artist who best depicts the spirit of the Gallipoli Campaign. 

Over the ten years of its existence, the Gallipoli Art Prize has attracted entries from a broad range of professional and amateur artists with increasing numbers of celebrated artists submitting entries every year. 

The 2013 prize was awarded to Melbourne artist Peter Wegner for his confronting painting ‘Dog with Gas Mask’. Previous entrants include acclaimed artists Garry Shead, Raymond Arnold (winner 2010), Euan Macleod (winner 2009), Leo Robba, Peter Smeeth, Robert Hannaford, Tom Carment and Paul Ryan. 

One of the abiding aims of The Gallipoli Art Prize is to put together a collection of works to commemorate the heroes of the Gallipoli campaign and all those who have served and fought during the following century. This spirit extends to the Turkish soldiers who were the Anzacs’ opponents in 1915. The club sponsors a parallel version of this competition every year in Turkey, honouring the ties of friendship that now unite former adversaries. 

The 2014 judging panel includes John McDonald (writer and art critic for The Sydney Morning Herald), Jane Watters (Director, S.H. Ervin Gallery, Sydney) and Barry Pearce (former Head Curator of Australian Art, AGNSW) 

Full application details at


 Concept Designs Unveiled – Warringah Council -Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The long-awaited and much needed youth facility for the northern beaches is one step closer to being realised.

“This is the indoor facility that northern beaches’ youth have been waiting for,” said Warringah Mayor, Michael Regan.

“The concept design is incredibly exciting. This will be a beautiful, functional and sustainable building that a young and old alike can enjoy and be proud of.”

Features of the concept design include a curved roof that will be partially translucent to blend in with the environment and allow for natural lighting. Sustainable green walls will screen the carpark from the street.

The building will provide the following facilities:

Two multi-use sports courts; Community rooms and activity space;  Youth study and ‘hang out’ area; Café; Parking for 350 cars

The building will include a Police Citizens Youth Club.

Find out more and have your say.


 Entry date extended for Club Marine Pittwater & Coffs Harbour Regatta 2014 - Friday 6 December 2013

The entry date has been extended by the organisers, The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club for the 33rd Club Marine Pittwater & Coffs Harbour Regatta 2014. Competitors will now have until 5pm next Friday 13 December to get their entry in without incurring a late fee.

This will give anyone contemplating entering the Club Marine Pittwater to Coffs  race and/or the associated five race regatta one last opportunity to get their entry in and enjoy the first race of the new year and the  “warm water” regatta.

With 39 boats entered to date, a competitive fleet of 33 monohulls and six multihulls has assembled for the tactical race north, representing 12 different yacht clubs on the eastern seaboard. There are no fewer than 15 boats doing the regatta for the first time.

With a late flurry of entries over the last few days the organising committee decided this afternoon to extend the close of entry to encourage more entries.

The five race regatta kicks off with the Club Marine Pittwater to Coffs Harbour Race on Thursday 2 January at 1pm followed by two sprint and two 20nm offshore races in Coffs Harbour on Sunday 5 and Monday 6 January to round out the regatta. The Club Marine Pittwater & Coffs Harbour Regatta offers IRC, ORCi, PHS, shorthanded and OMR multihull Divisions and also plays host to the Australian Performance Handicap (PHS) Championships with 28 entries opting to race in the championships.

Richard Hudson, Chair of the Coffs Organising Committee said, “We’re pleased to keep the entries open for another week, we have again attracted another very competitive fleet particularly in the 40 to 50 footers and want to leave the door open to invite others contemplating entering, the opportunity to do so. We have some great social activities planned in Coffs for crews to enjoy themselves so we welcome anyone considering the regatta, to get their entry and paperwork in as soon as possible."

A provisional list of entries, the notice of race and online entry is available on the event website at

For race enquiries please contact the RPAYC Sailing Office on (02) 9998 3771 or email

Final close of entries is now next Friday, 13 December 2013 at 1700hrs and the deadline for all competitors documentation is Monday 16 December at 1700hrs.

By Damian Devine, Club Marine Pittwater & Coffs Harbour Regatta Media

Top: Pretty Woman, the Farr 45 skippered by Richard Hudson leaves Barrenjoey bound for Coffs will be among the handicap contenders – photo by Damian Devine


Tanya Carmont, who works in the Pittwater Council in the Reserves and Recreation won an Award was to Water Skill for Life, (at Collaroy Rock Pool every Sunday) at this week’s 2013 NSW Volunteers Awards. Snapped with Paula Duncan, 2013 NSW Volunteers Awards Ambassador.

Picture by Michael Mannington.


 Cute Bunny for Christmas?

Baby bunnies are in pet shops just in time for Christmas. But please think about alternatives to a rabbit as a pet. Remember that rabbits are a pest species as well a pet.  The rabbit by law is a pest species but may be kept as a pet as long as it is are securely confined. 

This is easier said than done. Rabbits are ready to breed at about six months and are escape artists. Once free they multiply, cause problems for gardeners and do serious damage in bushland, particularly when it is regenerating after fire or where tubestock has been planted.

Local Councils are required by law to get rid of wild rabbits, and we pay for this with our rates. Control involves poison baits, infection with calicivirus or shooting. It is an endless task because of rabbits escaping and breeding.

People who in desperation trap rabbits find that euthanasia at the vet costs at least $5-10 per rabbit, on top of the cost of hiring or buying a trap.

Guinea Pigs are an alternative cute furry pet.  As it does not burrow, if it escapes it will not go wild. An escapee will not run away from another still in a cage and can be caught again without too much trouble.As it is a herd animal you need to have at least two as a solitary animal will pine away.

They come in many colours and with smooth or shaggy fur.The babies are born fully furred and are ready to run around with their mother in a few hours - real sweeties. 

With handling the babies soon become calm and happy to be cuddled and fed by hand.

Where to buy a couple? Ask at your pet shop.

Marita Macrae.


  “Nibbles and Noggin” evening on Tuesday 3rd Dec (Cora Adcock Cottage) Mona Vale Hospital at 6pm.

Above and below are some of the members of the Northern Beaches Cancer Support Group enjoying a drink, nibbles, carols and a Christmas quiz after a busy year of meetings and sessions where they gather as much information and support as possible about their prostate cancers. Specialists from the medical profession, researchers and allied medical supporters come to speak each month to advise, suggest and inform about new methods of dealing with and controlling the silent, often symptomless invidious illness. 

It is because of early detection and medical intervention, carers dedication, strength of will, humour and determination that many of our members have enjoyed and will enjoy many Christmases after their prostate cancer is discovered. Many of our fellas owe their continued existence to their own bravery. They put away the ”macho blind eye syndrome” and  REQUESTED a PSA test and went ahead from there! That is why they can raise a glass and a smile to wish all at Pittwater on Line A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR for 2014, 15, 16........

Norma Bennett

Pictures by Michael Mannington.


 Mona Vale Hospital Golden Jubilee Reunion Dinner 

As part of the Golden Jubilee celebrations for Mona Vale Hospital, a Reunion Dinner is being held at the Pittwater RSL Club on the evening of Friday February 21 2014. 

It will be an opportunity for anybody who has had anything to with Mona Vale Hospital over the last 50 years to meet up with old friends and colleagues. 

This includes former and current nurses and doctors, former and current support staff, former and current members of the Mona Vale Hospital Auxiliary and former members of the Mona Vale Hospital Younger Set. 

The dinner will be limited to the first 250 people to book. 

Above: Maryan Heffernan receiving prize at 1978 graduation ceremony (with proud mother) - one of the former nurses who will be attending the reunion dinner.

For information please contact Ian Lee on 02 9918 2900

Above: Maryan Heffernan receiving prize at 1978 graduation ceremony (with proud mother) - one of the former nurses who will be attending the reunion dinner.


Heart Families – You Are Not Alone 

The only organisation positioned to provide comprehensive support to families affected by Childhood Heart Disease, HeartKids NSW has recently secured funding from Pittwater RSL Club through the Pittwater Council Club GRANTS scheme to assist ‘heart families’ in the area. HeartKids NSW urges all families affected by childhood disease to access this support, by contacting the charity.

Childhood Heart Disease (CHD) is alarmingly prevalent, affecting 1 in 100 children. Yet, despite its prevalence, for the many families dealing with the painful challenges which CHD

presents, their journey with the disease can seem frightfully lonely. This is where HeartKids NSW comes in. Through a range of programs, the charity assists heart families to cope well with the realities of CHD. The charity’s support helps ensure that families are not alone.

Having begun around three decades ago as a grassroots group of passionate heart parents determined to help others on the CHD path, HeartKids NSW has ‘support provided by understanding heart parents’ deep in its ethos. Now a fully fledged professional non-profit organisation driven by experienced CEO, David Rose, and a highly accredited Board, HeartKids NSW delivers all of its support programs via its Family Support Coordinators – who have all had a child face battles with CHD.

“Having staff who relate personally with the challenges that CHD brings means that we can really reach out to heart families from a place of genuine empathy.” Rose says.

“We are very pleased to have been selected to receive a Pittwater Council ClubGRANT,” Rose says, “this invaluable support will help us better serve families in the area.”

Families in the Pittwater area wishing to access HeartKids NSW’s support are urged to complete the membership form available at (under “Support For Families”). Membership is free.

 December 1 - 7, 2013: Issue 139


 Mayor Townsend Elected SHOROC President - from SHORAC

Pittwater Mayor Jacqueline Townsend has been elected the new President of SHOROC at the 2013 Annual General Meeting. Mayor Townsend succeeds Warringah Mayor, Cr Michael Regan, who held the position for the past year. Manly Mayor Jean Hay AM was elected as SHOROC Vice President.

Cr Townsend said it was an honour to be elected the SHOROC President and to lead the SHOROC partner councils into another year of advocacy and collaboration.

“Many other councils look to SHOROC as a model for what can be achieved collectively and it is a privilege to be elected President to lead the work of SHOROC as we work together for our communities.

“It has been a challenging year for local government with foreshadowed changes to planning laws and the local government framework which makes the progress achieved by SHOROC and our partner councils even more significant.

“I would also like to acknowledge the work of outgoing President, Cr Michael Regan who successfully led SHOROC through one of our most successful years to date in terms of funding allocated to the region for much needed transport and health infrastructure.

“We plan to build on these successes and continue advocating on behalf of the Northern Beaches and Mosman for better public transport and roads including the Warringah, Mona Vale and Pittwater/Spit/Military Road corridors and the much anticipated Bus Rapid Transit system.

“Our other big focus will be the ensuring the successful construction of the new Northern Beaches Hospital, along with the necessary and long overdue road upgrades surrounding it, and upgrading Mona Vale Hospital for its long term complementary role.

“We will continue to build on the significant cost savings already achieved by leveraging our regional buying power and continued business improvements.

“It’s clear the teamwork and a united voice of our four councils gets results and in my role as President, I look forward to leading SHOROC over the coming year and working with NSW and Commonwealth Governments for a better Northern Beaches and Mosman,” Cr Townsend said.

The Hon Bronwyn Bishop attended the AGM and affirmed SHOROC is an important organisation for councils and said it was important all three levels of government continue to work together and be involved in the interest of their communities and that SHOROC continues to work constructively together which evidence shows it already does.

Picture of Cr. Townsend, Mayor of Pittwater, by A J Guesdon.


NSW Planning Bills Update 

The NSW Minister for Planning and Infrastructure, the Hon. Brad Hazzard, announced on Thursday, November 28th, that he would withdraw the NSW Planning Bills until February/March 2014.  The Minister made this announcement as a result of heavy amendments made to these Bills in the Upper House by the Labor, Greens and Shooters and Fishers parties. 

The Better Planning Network state they ‘will continue fighting to ensure that the NSW Planning Bills do not become law next year and that our planning system is reformed in a way that genuinely addresses the persistent problems that continue to plague planning and development in NSW.’

Their Media Release from Friday 29th of November is below:

 Minister Hazzard must take responsibility for failed planning reforms 

The Better Planning Network has called on NSW Planning Minister, Brad Hazzard, to take responsibility for his failed planning reforms, go back to the Moore and Dyer report and start again. 

“We have always accepted the government’s mandate to overhaul the planning system,” said BPN’s Corinne Fisher. “There is no doubt that the Moore and Dyer review commissioned by Minister Hazzard in 2011 was independent and comprehensive and produced recommendations that might have met the Government’s election promises at the same time as providing the foundation for an excellent planning system for the 21st Century.” 

“The problem is that Minister Hazzard ignored these recommendations and produced Planning Bills that failed to resolve the two key problems of our current planning system: complexity and community acceptance.” 

Despite loud and clear concerns raised by hundreds of community groups and thousands of individuals across the State, the Minister was also unwilling to address any community concerns until he was forced to make some concessions by his own Cabinet and Local Government. 

“There is no point in the Minister blaming ‘noisy minorities’ and ‘unholy alliances’ for the failure of his Bills. He should accept that he has produced legislation that satisfied the big end of town – evidenced by the support of his ‘unprecedented coalition of business groups’ whose members stand to make billions of dollars from it – but effectively disenfranchised the community.’ 

The BPN fully accepts the need for economic growth, increased housing and jobs, but argues that these can be achieved without top-down planning laws that lock the community out of the local planning process, damage community wellbeing, our environment and heritage. . “It is now up to the Minister to think carefully over the Christmas break. There is still a chance to do better.”


SHOROC 2013 Annual Report – Results Value Partnership

It’s been a big year and much has been achieved for the Northern Beaches and Mosman, highlights the SHOROC 2012-13 Annual Report released today ahead of the SHOROC AGM.

SHOROC President and Mayor of Warringah, Cr Michael Regan says that the core focus of SHOROC has been advocating with a united voice and partnering with the state and commonwealth governments to improve our region’s transport, health, planning and the environment.

“I am particularly proud of the traction we have made by joining forces for better transport and hospital infrastructure, with over $36 million allocated this past year in the 2013/14 NSW Budget.

“Three years ago SHOROC developed our plan for this region – Shaping Our Future – and I am pleased to say the NSW Government is now delivering on this plan.

“Our concerted effort to lobby as one has seen the NSW Government commit to a long term transport plan for the Northern Beaches, $7.5 million allocated for planning of Warringah Road, Wakehurst Parkway and Mona Vale Road upgrades, detailed planning continue on the Bus Rapid Transit system, and Infrastructure NSW propose a new tunnel under Mosman.

“The long-awaited Northern Beaches Hospital is now well progressed significantly and it’s been confirmed Mona Vale Hospital will be upgraded for a long term complementary role.

“We’re working more and more with the NSW Government on a regional basis and the Northern Beaches Regional Action Plan includes 10 projects and regional strategies to be delivered in partnership with SHOROC and councils.

“On behalf of our councils I thank our State and Federal MPs for their commitment to addressing our infrastructure needs and working closely with us to make our region even better.

“Thank you particularly to the SHOROC Board, councillors and staff who have made outstanding contributions and demonstrate the value and results councils achieve through partnership,” Cr Regan said.

Other highlights include an increased focus on business improvement with a regional tendering service established and joint contracts now worth $19 million annually, progression of the regional waste and resource recovery projects, and seven joint submissions on critical issues for councils and the region.

SHOROC Annual Report 2013 (PDF – 1.50MB)


Southern Community Health Centre EOI Release

The Northern Beaches Health Service Redevelopment Project Team has released the Expression of Interest (EOI) documentation for the Southern Community Health Centre.The release marks another key milestone in our journey to redesign health service delivery and improve local community access to high quality health care on the Northern Beaches.

The project team are seeking expressions of interest from land and building owners for sites or properties in theBrookvale area for the Southern Community Health Centre.

The EOI criteria will ensure that any land, leasing or development options put forward by proponents are in close proximity to public transport and are easily accessible for the major community health client base in the area.

Once the EOI phase is complete, the project team will evaluate the responses and select a shortlist of respondents who meet the criteria. A Request for Proposals will then be released to the EOI shortlist for the new Southern Community Health Centre.

The Southern Community Health Centre will be one of three community health service hubs on the Northern Beaches. Under the health service redesign, community health services will be integrated and networked to deliver better health outcomes to the local community.

For further information about the Northern Beaches Health Service Redevelopment please visit or call us on 9978 5410.


 Debutantes line up for Club Marine Pittwater to Coffs race - 29 November 2013 

The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club’s decision to remove a significant cost to compete in its major event, the Club Marine Pittwater to Coffs Harbour ocean race, has opened the door to a new group of debutantes. 

Closing date for entries is one week from today, Friday 6 December, and regulars and newcomers alike have only seven sleeps to lodge their entry and paperwork. 

Last month the progressive Sydney Northern Beaches yacht club announced that boat owners are allowed to compete in the 33rdrunning of the event carrying a satellite phone as an alternative to HF radio for communication purposes, a major coup for the longstanding event.

Thanks to the club’s foresight, Andrew Butler’s Dufour 36 Astral from the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia is now one of the newcomers signed up for the 2014 edition starting January 2nd from Broken Bay. 

"The relaxation of the HF requirements was a significant factor in our decision to proceed with the race and I commend the club on making a balanced decision that does not compromise safety but allows the Cat 2 races to become more accessible to newcomers to the sport,” said Butler. 

"It's an expensive exercise getting a boat up to Cat 2 certification and to tie up possibly $5K on  a single bit of kit is a big investment, particularly for a race such as Coffs where other technologies such as yellow brick and Sat phone are available to achieve the same outcome."

Debutant Andrew Butler’s Dufour 36, Astral, is looking forward to the Pittwater to Coffs race – photo by Dufour Yachts

The previous requirement for HF radio being an obstacle to participation was feedback competitors took to the club. “The club listened to the comments and responded proactively and responsibly,” said Pittwater Coffs organising committee chairman, Richard Hudson. 

“By taking away a significant expense for owners we have opened up the event to any number of new competitors. We expect the decision will have a very positive impact on entries in the coming years,” Hudson added.

Other new recruits to the popular northern race, the first offshore event of Australian East Coast calendar, include Nick Jones’ Hanse 375, Granny Jen, and Roy Leslie's Elan 37, Koko, both representing the Gosford Sailing Club.

Roy Leslie’s Elan 37, Granny Jen, in training on Brisbane Waters – photo by Mark Scott

Laurence Pidgeon, a former bull rider reared in the Queensland outback town of Stonehenge is a first timer in the short-handed division with his Jutson 39, Sweethart. In 2006 Pidgeon moved to Brisbane, swapping his riding boots for sea boots, and took to it like a duck to water, even tackling the Rolex Sydney Hobart two years ago.

Now he and one other crew member will have a crack at the 226 nautical mile northern coastal classic, racing short-handed for the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron.

Once the fleet arrives in Coffs Harbour the second stage of the regatta will get underway with four races scheduled over January 5 and 6.

The 2014 regatta will once again play host to the third annual Australian PHS Championships which all monohull entrants will be eligible to compete for.

So far six multihulls and a handful of monohull newcomers have registered alongside many race regulars for the 1pm start on January 2nd off Barrenjoey Headland (monohull fleet).

Owners contemplating the combined popular northern race and subsequent regatta at Coffs Harbour have until Friday 6 December 2013, to lodge an entry and get their paperwork in.

The 2014 Club Marine Pittwater & Coffs Harbour Regatta Notice of Race and online entry is available from the event website

For race enquiries and documentation please contact the RPAYC Sailing Office on (02) 9998 3771 or  

By Lisa Ratcliff/Club Marine Pittwater & Coffs Harbour Regatta media


 Olympic gold medalists and fresh talent on home waters for Melbourne Sailing World Cup - Cora Zillich, Friday, 29 November 2013

The ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne kicking-off this Sunday, 1 December 2013, will see the Australian Sailing Team (AST) and Australian Sailing Squad (ASS) competing in full force on home waters in what is considered Australia’s premier Olympic class sailing event.  Held at Sandringham Yacht Club, Melbourne, Australia from 2-8 December, the second stop of the 2013-14 ISAF Sailing World Cup series features strong fleets across two Paralympic and ten Olympic events.

Fourteen Olympic AST athletes and 30 ASS members including no less than three London Olympic gold medallists and four Olympic silver medallists plus Paralympic Gold medallist Liesl Tesch will battle it out on Port Phillip Bay over the course of a week amongst 579 competitors from 23 different countries around the world. 

London Olympic gold medallists Nathan Outteridge (NSW) and Iain Jensen (NSW) return in the 49er class after an intense year of America’s Cup competition.  It will only be the second appearance of the pair in the boat after their London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition triumph.  After a lengthy America's Cup campaign on Artemis Racing the duo came back strongly at the 49er World Championship in Marseille, France in September 2013 and finished in fifth place after very limited training. 

In the Laser Class, current World Number One sailor Tom Burton(NSW) is back to defend his 2012 title.  Burton won gold and silver at other World Cup events earlier this year and just finished ninth at the Laser Men’s World Championships.  He will be challenged by Matt Wearn (WA), who qualified for the Australian Sailing Team with a tenth place at the Laser Men’s World Championship last week. 

“I am extremely happy that I finished off in the top to qualify myself for AST”, said Wearn.  “It’s great knowing that all the hard work that we put in pays off.  I don’t really have any expectations for Sail Melbourne seeing as it is so close to the end of worlds, but for sure I would love another podium finish and to even finish one better than last year and take the win.”

AST Olympic gold medallist and recently crowned 2013 ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Mathew Belcher (QLD) and crew Will Ryan (QLD) are aiming to continue their winning streak:  Since making their inaugural appearance together at the 2012 ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne, Belcher and Ryan have dominated the Men's 470, extending the unbeaten run Belcher had established with London Olympic crew Malcolm Page to 17 regattas.  After winning gold at the 470 World Championship in La Rochelle, France in August Belcher and Ryan are hot favourites to pick up where they left off after a short break.

“We’re really looking forward to competing on home waters at this year’s Melbourne event against some of the best in the sport.  We've had an amazing year this year," said Belcher. "It's been a lot better than we anticipated.”  

“To start at Melbourne, winning every race was quite phenomenal for us and really unexpected and for our season to go as it has winning all the events it gives you great confidence to know where you're at.  Fingers crossed we can keep that run going.  We hope to finish off a perfect year with a win, but our focus is on performance and getting back racing again." 

Two time Australian Olympic silver medallist Darren Bundock (NSW) will be the one to watch in the Nacra 17 as he makes his first appearance in the mixed multihull with London 2012 silver medallistNina Curtis (NSW).  They will be up against Curtis’ London crew mate Lucinda Whitty (NSW) who is sailing the Nacra with coach turned athlete Euan McNicol (NSW).  Joining these crews in the fleet will be early Australian Nacra 17 front runners Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin.  The duo have notched up a string of top ten finishes throughout 2013, were sixth at the World Championships in the Netherlands, and just finished on top of the EUROSAF Champions Cup ranking.

In the women’s 470 class Sarah Cook (VIC) will join forces with up-and-coming ASS Youth Bridging sailor Carrie Smith (WA) with Cook’s skipper Elise Rechichi (VIC) not racing for personal reasons.  Carrie is the reigning ISAF Youth World Champion skipper in the 420 class – the youth feeder class for the 470.

“Carrie and I had our first full session together yesterday, and we're both feeling pretty comfortable and confident with where things are at heading into the regatta.  I feel like it's a great opportunity to see where I'm at and how much I've learnt over the last year with Elise”, Sarah Cook said about the new combination

“The most important thing for both Carrie and I at this stage is just to be getting out on the water, in order to keep learning, developing and progressing.  I'm sure during the course of the regatta we'll hit road blocks and make mistakes, but at this time of the year and this point in the quadrennium that's not a bad thing.”

The duo will face the opposition of 2012 ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne victors and ASS athletes Sasha and Jaime Ryan (QLD) who return to defend their title. 

The 49erFX field will see new AST and ASS combinations with Olympic silver medallist Olivia Price (NSW) and Haylee Outteridge (NSW) at the helm of their boats with Eliza Solly (VIC) and Ella Clarke (WA) respectively.  AST crew Caitlin Elks (WA) will team with Tess Lloyd (VIC) for the first time.  Solly, Lloyd and Clark, who is the current ISAF Youth World Champion crew with Carrie Smith, are in their first season of senior competition.

Twenty-five Laser Radials and fourteen Finns will line up with fierce competition expected in the latter between AST front runner Brendan Casey (QLD) and ASS members Oliver Tweddell (VIC) and Jake Lilley (QLD).  

Gold medal Paralympian Liesl Tesch will hit the water in the Skud18 while Paralympian Matt Bugg (TAS) will race the 2.4mR. 

Racing in the Men's and Women's 470, Finn, Laser, Laser Radial and Paralympic events commences on Monday 2 December through to Saturday 7 December 2013.

The 49er, 49erFX, Men's and Women's RS:X and Nacra 17 fleets start racing on Tuesday 3 December through to their Medal Races on Sunday 8 December 2013 .

For more event information including entry list and results check

Top: Nina Curtis, Lucinda Whitty and Olivia Price at RPAYC's Olympics Presentation - 21st of October, 2012. Picture by A J Guesdon.


Southern Cross Wildlife Care - Critter of the Month - December 2013 - curated by Lynleigh Greig

Kevin - Very Dishy, but Somewhat Fishy...

Ever wondered what it would be like to venture out at midnight on a Friday night to capture a wild and injured pelican...? Well, Sonja Elwood of Sydney Metropolitan Wildlife Services had the dubious honour of undertaking such an ordeal last Friday... 

There must’ve been many people that drove past poor Kevin the Pelican, but only one was kind enough to stop and make a call to wildlife rescuers about his plight. 

Sonja happened to be working the ‘After-hours Hotline’ at Sydney Wildlife when she received the call. Getting there quickly was imperative, so she and Tyson were on the scene just after midnight, equipped with lots of towels, an extra-large carrier/enclosure and plenty of courage. 

Pelicans don’t like to be watched, so you have to sidle up to them with your eyes averted and attempt to capture them ! whilst looking away... Not an easy task! After some side-stepping and fox-trotting, Tyson managed to get a blanket over Kevin’s head and bundled him into the carrier. Phew!

Food for Kevin was going to be a bit of a problem at that time of the morning so a quick stop at the servo for some bait was in order. Mmmmmm squid for breakfast...!

Nobody’s exactly sure how Kevin sustained his wing injury, but it was evident that he’d been suffering for quite some time. 

An emergency trip to Dr Howard Ralph, veterinary surgeon atSouthern Cross Wildlife Care, was in order.

Dr Ralph put Kevin under General Anaesthetic to take a closer look at that nasty injury. He cleaned and debrided the wound, applied dressings and gave antibiotic cover. Luckily there were no fractures.

He was given fluids to address any dehydration issues.

When he had recovered from his procedure, Kevin received some counselling from Dr Ralph. 

Kevin was a perfect gentleman. Until he decided to regurgitate the contents of his stomach onto the operating table...! Followed in quick succession by a full evacuation of his bowel...! Thank you, Kevin. As if the smell of fishy breath wasn’t enough... :)

The team fell madly in love with Kevin. Such a dear little fellow. Lindy found him truly quite charming. 

Back home, Sonja made a little nest for Kevin in the laundry and filled a little paddling pool out in the courtyard.

The team at Southern Cross Wildlife Care feel very privileged to be able to help Kevin. His wing will need regular dressing changes and he will require ongoing antibiotic cover but his chances of full recovery are very high. 

Good luck, Big Kev!