Where’s the money, Minister Merlino?

DISMAYED: Beechworth Secondary College students Sarwar Hussain (left), Tom Christesen, Riley Goldsworthy, Holly Borschman, Morgan Lupson, Indigo Rowe and college council president Larry Goldsworthy are disgruntled that the campus has continued to miss out on desperately-needed capital works funding. PHOTO: Coral Cooksley

BEECHWORTH Secondary College council and the college community continues to be dismayed by the Victorian government’s failure to make an unambiguous funding commitment for long overdue capital works at the college campus.

The college was one of six rural and regional schools among 35 which shared in a $12 million state budget allocation last year to meet the costs of scoping and planning for major new building and infrastructure improvements.

This took Beechworth a step closer but the government ignored the school community’s needs in the current budget.

The last major improvements on the campus were completed a decade ago.

College council president Larry Goldsworthy said students were still being taught in sub-standard demountable classrooms.

“It’s time the state government stopped treating the students and staff of Beechworth Secondary College as second class citizens,” he told the Ovens and Murray Advertiser last week.

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NBN plans fixed wireless roll-out

NBN is to make application to Indigo Shire Council to establish a fixed wireless facility in Beechworth’s Payne Road as part of the broadband corporation’s local service roll-out starting next year.

NBN is to make application to Indigo Shire Council to establish a fixed wireless facility in Beechworth’s Payne Road as part of the broadband corporation’s local service roll-out starting next year.

Corporate affairs adviser Kasey Ellison said NBN planned to start construction early in 2018 to connect about 1900 Beechworth homes and businesses to the fixed line network.

She said people could expect to order a retail service over the national broadband network between July and September next year.

The proposed fixed wireless facility is additional infrastructure to provide national broadband access for about 200 households and premises on Beechworth’s outskirts.

“It is expected these premises will be able to take advantage of services over NBN fixed wireless technology in early 2019,” Ms Ellison said.
“However, this is subject to council approval.”

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Grafting workshop follows good scions

MATCH: Stanley orchardist Charlie Showers demonstrates to Benalla’s Janelle Duffy whip-and-tongue grafting of an apple scion on rootstock. PHOTO: Jamie Kronborg

MASTER orchardist Henry Hilton shared his keen commercial experience with budding horticulturalists, aborists and gardeners at an apple- grafting workshop in Stanley on Saturday.

The principal of Snowline Fruits joined Beechworth Food Co-op and Black Barn Farm, where Charlie Showers and Jade Miles are reworking and replanting an old orchard on Stanley’s edge, to present a hands-on short course in fruit propagation – part of a continuing series of workshops to foster local food network development.

Mr Showers and Mr Hilton talked to the 15 participants from Myrtleford, Benalla, Albury, Eldorado and Beechworth about the objectives, history and practice of grafting and its benefits, such as the replication of reliable fruiting varieties which have distinctive taste, production or keeping qualities and disease, pest or cold resistance.

Mr Hilton said grafting enabled a producer to create multi-graft trees from scratch and an ability to add a new fruiting variety to an existing tree.

It also allowed for the rapid reproduction of a sought-after variety, could speed fruiting time and be used to repair damage.
But it could only succeed within species – with genus malus (apple) grafts compatible only on malus rootstock, just as genus pyrus (pear) grafts grow successfully only on pyrus rootstock.

Mr Showers said rootstocks offered a range of advantages, from disease and insect resistance to dwarfing, hardiness, high yields, drought tolerance and rapid growth.

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Carers mindful of steps ahead

EMPATHY: Ainslie Whyborn (left), Beechworth Health Service chief executive Mark Ashcroft, Joan Simms, Di Everingham, Lorna Nash and Penny Bingham offered information at Beechworth kiosk on Saturday to foster community awareness of dementia and its effects.

BEECHWORTH kiosk on Saturday became the ‘go to’ place for information about ways to support people with dementia.

September is national dementia awareness month and Alzheimer’s Australia is helping to co-ordinate ‘You are not alone’ – a national campaign to foster community support and understanding for those who have dementia and for the people who care for them.

A carer support group developed in Beechworth after it was selected as a pilot community for a program called ‘Changing Minds’ in 2015 and Saturday’s information exchange was the first of three activities to build wider community awareness of the condition.

Beechworth’s Lorna Nash – who has helped to shape the group – said a caring role could be a difficult and lonely journey.

“Our aim is to help and support each through sharing problems, knowledge and reinforce the message that ‘you are not alone,” she said.

Beechworth Health Service chief executive Mark Ashcroft said the committed carer group was to be acknowledged for its work with the health service to raise awareness of dementia in the community.

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Bushrangers’ grand stage

ALL SET: (From left) Team Manager Rob Sinclair, coach Bill McLaughlin and assistant coach Dale Walker (far right) with the under 14 Beechworth Bushrangers ahead of the grand final this Saturday. PHOTO: Jamie Pronk

GRAND final week is here – and all in the Beechworth community are behind the Bushrangers’ under 14 Australian football side which goes head-to-head with Thurgoona this weekend at Sandy Creek oval.

Anything is possible.

Saturday’s match has been two weeks in the making, with the Bushrangers defeating Barnawartha two weeks ago to progress to grand final.

Thurgoona defeated Barnawartha by two points in a thriller 6.1 to 6.3 with the Bulldogs keeping the Tigers goalless in the fourth quarter.

Beechworth finished the season as minor premiers, undefeated and won their first final to progress to Saturday’s match, while Thurgoona finished third with a 13-5 win-loss record and have played three extra matches than Beechworth in the past month.

The Bushrangers will take confidence into this game having defeated Thurgoona in both of their clashes this season.

Beechworth won the first match in round six by five points, and the second encounter by 24 points in round 12.

The Bushrangers will also have the advantage up forward with their top three goal kickers Liam Stephens (47 goals), Liam McLaughlin (37 goals) and Angus Pronk (34 goals) easily outscoring Thurgoona’s Elijah Farrah (27), Will Pargeter (19) and Riley Holland (18).

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Bushrangers’ U14s top football ladder

BEECHWORTH Bushrangers’ under 14 football team is undefeated and sits at the top of the Tallangatta and District League ladder with 10 wins and a whopping 667.92 percentage points.

The Bushrangers’ most junior side is coming off a hard-fought win over second-placed Barnawartha, with a tight 11-point Bushranger lead at three quarter time turning into a comfortable 37-point win.

Liam McLaughlin booted four goals to bring his season tally to 17 majors, while Oliver Scalzo slotted three goals to bring his tally to 13.

Liam Stephens (29 goals) leads the under 14s competition while Angus Pronk comes in third place with 22.

Bushrangers’ coach Bill McLaughlin said his team is doing extra work outside of training sessions to better their football.

“The boys are doing well this season, they just seem to improve each week, they must be doing a lot of extra work,” McLaughlin said.

“Training nights we focus on building our skills and we have been working on those since January and since we came together I knew we would do well but they’re constantly looking for each other up the ground.

“It is a great team to coach.”

McLaughlin said there was a lot of expectation coming into the Barnawartha match.

“It was a tight tussle and Barnawartha were a lot bigger than us,” he said.

“We ran them off their feet and kicked four goals in the last quarter.”


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