南京夜网 21/08/2019

Over a century, Stella has seen it all

IMAGINE living through some the greatest changes our world has seen.
Nanjing Night Net

Moving from horse and cart to the automobile, living through two world wars and the Great Depression, unbelievable medical advancements, space travel and sending a man to the moon, the huge growth in population and the internet, just to name a few.

The area’s oldest Aboriginal elder Stella Wright has seen it all.

Mrs Wright turned 100 on Monday (February 4).

Born Stella Lonesborough on February 4, 1913 at the Roseby Park Aboriginal Mission, she has links that go right back to the early days of Shoalhaven settlement.

Her great-grandfather was Patrick Caffery, an Irish convict who came to the area in 1832 to work on the Berry Estate in Coolangatta.

He married Anne Gibney and their daughter Margaret Caffery married John Lonesborough.

Their children were John jnr (Stella’s father), Robert (Uncle Bob, who lived to the ripe old age of 99, just one month short of his 100th birthday), Annie, Edward (known as Ned), Margaret, Catherine and Mary.

Margaret, known as Maggie, married Frederick Smith, who was the father of one the area’s great sporting administrators Artie Smith.

Mary married Herbert Cotteral De Mestre, the son of Andre De Mestre.

A daughter of Ned’s (also Margaret and known as Maggie) married Harry Regan, producing another man well known for the promotion of Shoalhaven sport, Bernie Regan, as well as his talented siblings Ted, Jack, Dennis, Kathlene, Margaret, Helen and Joan.

John Lonesborough jnr married Mary Jane Carpenter and had five children: Linda, Stella, Myra, Margaret (known as Maggie) and John (known as Jack).

They moved to the Crookhaven River about five kilometres up a branch of the Shoalhaven River, to where her father was working on the oyster leases, which are still in the family today.

Stella married John Wright, known as Johnnie, and they had four sons: Terry, Barry, Henry (known as Joe) and Trevor.

She was two years older than her husband.

“I didn’t know it at the time,” she joked.

And she admitted that he didn’t make much of an impression when she first met him.

“He was fishing with his father and was trying to get to Goodnight Island and a howling nor easterly was blowing,” she said.

“We were out with Dad in the launch and towed him down to the island.

“To tell the truth, I didn’t think much of him.

“I didn’t see him for a few weeks and then he kept coming around.

“But he was a big man and a good looking fellow.”

They married in 1934 in the Presbyterian Church in Nowra.

They also lived on the southern side of Crookhaven River on the Shoalhaven River.

Stella comes from a family of long livers – her uncle Bob died at 99, one of her own sisters reached 92, another 86, and another 77.

She has lost count of the grandchildren and great-grandchildren, but does have four great-great-grandchildren.

What’s her secret to longevity?

“No secret, just live a good life and work hard,” she said.

“We were always doing something, and with four sons I always had something to do.”

To this day she still enjoys a feast of oysters at least once a week.

After living at Crookhaven for a few years they moved into town, taking up residence at The Grotto at North Nowra in the 1940s.

They lived there for several years – Johnnie continued to work as a fisherman – and the foundations of the family’s home remain there today.

“Johnnie would fish on the river and the kids would often go out as well,” Stella said.

They then moved to a house in North Nowra, where Sharman Park is located.

“It was all bush back then,” she said.

“There weren’t many people living up there.”

That bushland setting would prove disastrous when the home was destroyed in a bushfire.

Today, two sons – Terry and Trevor – live within minutes of the site of the family home.

There were moves to Culburra Beach and Bomaderry before Johnnie passed away aged 79 in 1995 after more than 60 years of marriage.

Stella then became a resident of the Rose Mumbler Village at North Nowra and, after a bout of severe illness, moved into Clelland Lodge three and a half years ago.

A family celebration was held on Saturday at North Nowra, where the guest of honour took great pride in opening letters of congratulations from the Queen, Governor General, Prime Minister and Opposition Leader, the NSW Premier and the local MPs.

About 60 family members dropped in across the day to help mark the occasion, while she celebrated with a quiet family dinner at Clelland Lodge on Monday.

More photos appear on page 87.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY: Stella Wright (centre) celebrates her 100th birthday on Saturday surrounded by family.

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

南京夜网 21/08/2019

Parking committee eyes reserve funds

COUNCIL will be asked tonight to use its more than $6 million held in cash reserves to help fund a multi-storey car park.
Nanjing Night Net

Parking campaigner and founder of the Independent Nowra CBD Parking Development Committee Lance Sewell announced that the committee would put a motion to tonight’s CBD Action Committee regarding the funds.

Mr Sewell said the money the group was targeting was from council’s Work Cover security deposits.

He said rather than being kept in reserve, the money should be spent on improving the CBD, specifically through parking.

The call comes on the back of a recent coupon the parking committee ran in the South Coast Register and Shoalhaven and Nowra News.

Mr Sewell said about 300 people filled out the coupons expressing frustration at limited parking in the Nowra CBD.

“There were three main patterns of discontent with the coupons that were returned,” he said.

“The first and most concerning was the number of people who said they had been traumatised by parking problems in Nowra and for that reason had decided to do their shopping at Shellharbour.

“Escape spending seems to be

an even bigger problem than anyone envisaged.

“When I say escape spending I am not talking about people who go to Shellharbour, Wollongong or Sydney to buy things they can’t buy here. That is not escape spending.

“I am talking about roughly one fifth of the people who filled out

the coupons, who specifically said they shopped elsewhere due to the lack of parking locally, not because the shopping was better elsewhere,” he said.

Mr Sewell said repetitive complaints also came from doctors, dentists, lawyers, hairdressers and people wanting to visit the cinema.

“These people and their clients find it difficult to find a space to park for the length of time they need to be there.

“They are often being fined for the privilege of coming to Nowra.

“The third gripe people had, and this was the biggest response, came from people who work in Nowra and had no hope of legally parking if they arrived in town after 8.15am on any week day.

“Most started work at 9am.

“Our committee thanks the hundreds of people who responded to the coupons.

“It gives us the opportunity to consider and offer a constructive process to support these criticisms about the lack of parking in Nowra.

“We will continue to approach council, knowing that we have tremendous public support.

“Council cannot afford to

continue to ignore this chaotic parking issue.”

MOMENTUM: Multi-storey car park campaigners Lance Sewell and Paul Dean sort through the 300 coupons they received from people concerned about parking in the CBD.

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

南京夜网 21/08/2019

Houses spring up on troubled Worrigee site

WORK is progressing well on the controversial 26 community housing units at Golden Grove at Worrigee and is on track to be completed by September.
Nanjing Night Net

New BlueChp CEO Charles Northcote said work on the first six homes was well under way.

“Everything is moving in a positive manner,” he said.

“We are on track with the building, the slabs are down for the first six, while a number of the homes already have frames and roof trusses up and will hopefully be ready for occupation by the end of April, if not before.”

GJ Gardner Homes is undertaking the local project.

Mr Northcote said work was also ready to start on the remaining 20 homes.

“We have done the costings and are nearly ready to start on the next lot of houses,” he said.

“We are just awaiting feedback from the federal government to the state government on the National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS) funding and once that is complete we will be moving ahead.

“If everything goes to plan, our estimation, barring the weather, is to have all 26 homes completed

by September.”

Mr Northcote has taken over the CEO role from Brian Murnane recently but has already been

down to meet with residents of Golden Grove.

“I’ve been down and spoken to the residents and I think they are just happy to see action happening on the site,” he said.

Golden Grove resident Dr Katy Daniel said it was great to finally have the work under way on the site.

It had been a long wait. Despite

the site being cleared, it had virtually gone untouched for close to 12 months.

“There seems to be a constant level of work from the builders,” Dr Daniel said.

“They have been sticking to all the requirements as far as I can see.

“They are using the entrance road off Worrigee Road and we have had no problems in our street with trucks etcetera.

“The guys from GJ Gardner Homes have been fantastic.”

PROGRESS: Work is under way on the community housing units at Golden Grove at Worrigee with six slabs laid and a number of building frames now in place.

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

南京夜网 21/08/2019

Sporting groups and clubs benefit from grants

A NUMBER of not-for-profit sports clubs, sporting groups, community organisations and Shoalhaven City Council have gained funding as part of the NSW government’s Participation and Facility Grant Program.
Nanjing Night Net

The Participation and Facility Grant Program provides funding for local initiatives that encourage people to be more active on a regular basis.

South Coast MP Shelley Hancock said by assisting to fund the development of local sport facilities, the NSW government was investing in the health and wellbeing of local communities.

Shoalhaven City Council received $25,000 to undertake the installation of an outdoor fitness station at Paradise Beach Reserve at Sanctuary Point and $25,000 to resurface and upgrade six netball courts at Ulladulla district netball courts.

“The upgrade of netball courts at Ulladulla has been much anticipated by local residents, with the courts in a dire state of disrepair,” Mrs Hancock said.

The Nowra Bowling and Recreation Club was granted $25,000 to upgrade its main roof and airconditioning in order to be able to install solar power.

Funding has also been provided for programs to assist residents participating in local sporting activities and build on current participants’ skills.

The Shoalhaven District Football Association received $1750 to provide training to volunteer coaches and the Bay and Basin Community Resources has been given $9640 to motivate and develop fitness within the Bay and Basin community.

“Participation in sport and recreation together with good facilities brings people closer together, as well as offering many health benefits,” Mrs Hancock said.

Local not-for-profit sports clubs, sporting groups and community organisations are being encouraged to apply for the next round of Participation and Facilities Program grants, with applications closing on February 26.

For more information, visit www.dsr.nsw.gov.au/grants.

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

南京夜网 21/08/2019

HMAS Creswell’s old bell returns home

A SIGNIFICANT piece of Shoalhaven naval history has been returned to the region.
Nanjing Night Net

The original bell that hung in the clock tower at HMAS Creswell, which disappeared when the college was decommissioned between 1930 and 1958, has been returned to HMAS Albatross.

For almost 50 years it has been a feature in the Hoskins family’s homes in Sydney.

Fleet Air Arm Museum manager Terry Hetherington said it was wonderful to have such a significant piece of local history returned.

“During the construction of Creswell in 1913-14 a feature was the administration building and the clock tower,” he said.

“In the tower, the bell chimed in nautical chimes every half hour.

“The naval college was decommissioned between 1930 and 1958 and it was used as a commercial hotel site, before returning to its current use in 1958.

“Somewhere along the line the old bell was removed and replaced with another when the college reopened.”

In the mid 1960s a truck turned up at the engineering works of a chap named Hoskins in Chatswood. On the back was the large bronze bell.

“Luckily, rather than selling it off to scrap merchants he kept it,” Mr Hetherington said.

“He took it home and had it mounted on a stand and used to have in the foyer of his home.

“Upon his death it was passed to his son David who continued the tradition of having it in the foyer of his home.”

Mr Hoskins contacted the then historical officer at HMAS Creswell Lieutenant Commander David Jones, wondering if the navy would like the bell back.

The bell carries graffiti from the college’s second intake back in 1914.

“It became a tradition for the cadets at Creswell to try to get into the clock tower,” Mr Hetherington said.

“But back in 1914 four managed it and even got to the bell and put their initials on it and they are still on the bell today.

“LJT, PFD, OF McM and AHS left their initials while a further name Read was left in Morse code (possibly from 1917 but there is also another theory). There was also an inscription underneath the four names: “And the rest of us, Royal Australian Naval College Jervis Bay 1914 entry.”

“We don’t know what they used but it’s not a paint, perhaps a wax crayon that has etched itself into the bronze.

“We are going to try to get the forensic police to maybe examine it and let us know what they think it may be.”

Although not yet weighed, Mr Hetherington estimated the bell would be between 200-300kg and it’s not known if it is complete with a clapper.

“We aren’t sure yet, we haven’t been able to get in underneath it to see,” he said.

The plan is for the bell to be returned to HMAS Creswell and displayed in the foyer of the base’s historical collection.

“We won’t be restoring it, we will leave it as it is there is too much history involved,” Mr Hetherington said.

HISTORY MYSTERY: Fleet Air Arm Museum manager Terry Hetherington with the historic HMAS Creswell bell.

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