Monthly Archives: April 2019

One titanic tractor put Red Cliffs on the map

INVENTOR Frank Bottrill built his dream tractor, Big Lizzie, in 1915 with the help of the A H McDonald and Co engineering works that was situated at the time in Richmond, Melbourne.
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The construction began early that year and by mid-October, Big Lizzie, and two trailers were completed and ready to begin their journey north.

They set out from Richmond in early 1916, heading towards outback New South Wales where Mr Bottrill intended for Lizzie, below, to work.

Mr Bottrill had worked in Broken Hill years earlier and that experience was the genesis of his massive tractor invention.

They reached Mildura in October 1917 to find the Murray River in flood.

Without a bridge to cross the river, the big tractor’s journey could not be completed for several months at least, so Mr Bottrill began to seek work in the area.

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Buoyant sale at Wattle Wood Springs

Wattle Wood Springs principal Gary Gum, Myponga, Elders Jamestown’s Scott Fleetwood, and buyer Jamie Helyer, Penneshaw, KI, with the $1500 ramWATTLE Wood Springs, Myponga, had its “best sale”, with the average up almost $200 and a jump in the clearance and top price.
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The auction got off to a strong start with the first run of eight rams sold at an average $1131.

The first 24 Suffolk rams were sold individually with the final eight offered as a pick of the pen.

Jamie Helyar, Penneshaw, KI, returned to pick up the top price ram for the second year, paying $1500 for lot 3.

The August-drop ram, from an Allendale sire and Blackbutt dam, had a fat score of three and an eye muscle depth of 37.

It weighed in at 99 kilograms, with a weight increase of 50kg during the 88 day period since weaning, an average gain of 568 grams.

“He’s nice framed and not too long in the legs,” Mr Helyar said.

“He’ll hopefully make a lot of lambs for us.

“I’ve been buying here a few years and they do perform well where we are.”

Stud principal Gary Gum said the sale, now in its fourth year, was the “best sale we’ve had”.

“We had repeat buyers, which is really pleasing, and some new ones,” he said.

He said the rams had stood up to a tough season quite well, with average weights even higher than last year.

The sale was conducted by Elders with Scott Fleetwood of Elders, Jamestown, taking bids.

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Big celebration to mark Lizzie’s 100

THE Red Cliffs community will celebrate the history of their town’s shops and the centenary of Big Lizzie this morning.
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Staff pose on the latest model bicycles at Bayliss Red Cliffs Cycle and Motor Depot.

A historical shopping trail of the Red Cliffs town centre will be launched in Barclays Square, coinciding with a celebration of 100 years since its iconic tractor was built.

Red Cliffs and District Historical Society has been working on the project, Our Town Red Cliffs, for the past year with grant support from the Public Records Office of Victoria.

The society’s Christine Cook said the shopping trail was among several projects to be completed in the lead-up to the town’s centenary in 2021, to “collate the town’s history and stories before they are lost”.

“This year, we chose the shops as our focus and next year there will be a different theme of things related to water, such as the river and flooding,” she said.

“It’s an ongoing project and we’re still getting information from people who have seen some of our publicity and said ‘oh yes, my grandfather…’ and we get the story.

“A lot of people have become interested, got engaged and are happy to share stories … it has revived memories and we’ve heard all these stories of people shopping as kids.”

Mildura deputy mayor John Arnold will launch the shopping trail brochures about 9.30am, which contains information for self-guided tours, supported by historic photos and posters displayed in the windows of participating shops and businesses.

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Perth bookworms rescue Save the Children from watery disaster

Save the Children depot staff lost a significant amount of stock when a water main burst in July. Thousands of books had to be dumped after the flood.
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Flood forces charity to cancel fundraiser supporting Perth kids

The local branch of youth charity Save the Children are on their way to a full recovery after a burst water main damaged their East Victoria Park depot in July.

On Tuesday, staff and volunteers began setting up for an impromptu garage sale of donated books – to be held in the restored depot – to raise money for programs to help migrant and refugee children.

Volunteer coordinator Sonia Holmes said while they had missed out on their annual five-day book sale at Canning Exhibition Centre, the public’s generosity had allowed them to hold a smaller charity drive.

“The depot has been running red hot since the minute people heard they could donate,” Ms Holmes said.

“I keep the books here at the office, but now what’s happened is people have been ringing up because they want to come buy books to support us.”

She said they had been “inundated with books” and had huge volunteer support following the flood.

“I cannot thank everyone enough. You just don’t realise how much people care, and how good they are until it comes to such a disaster. People really came to help us,” Ms Holmes said.

Save the Children uses the charity drive to fund their It Takes a Village program, which it sustained with funds from a book sale at UWA in August.

While the insurance repayments are yet to be finalised, Ms Holmes praised the Water Corporation’s  commitment to cover the cost of flood damage.

“They told us to let them know if we have any out of pocket expenses and have been touching base constantly to make sure everything is being sorted out,” she said.

The book sale will be held in October 24 at the Save the Children depot on Milford Street in East Victoria Park.

Donations of books are still being accepted and can be taken to either the East Victoria Park depot or one in Shenton Park.  Follow WAtoday on Twitter

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Classic cycle launches Cycle Classic

Jonah Kennedy of New Lambton display riding a penny farthing bicycle at the waterfront at the launch of the ORICA Newcastle Cycle Classic, at the Crowne Plaza in Honeysuckle on Tuesday. Picture: Max Mason-HubersIT is a sight more suited to a 19th century English countryside.
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Coasting along the Honeysuckle boardwalk on Tuesday morning, whizzing past the mothers pushing prams and those out for a run, was Hunter District Cycle Club member Jonah Kennedy atop a penny-farthing.

Jonah Kennedy of New Lambton display riding a penny farthing bicycle at the waterfront at the launch of the ORICA Newcastle Cycle Classic, at the Crowne Plaza in Honeysuckle on Tuesday. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

The old school two-wheeler was there as a reminder of where bicycle racing began at the launch of Orica Newcastle Cycle Classic. The event, in its fourth year, is a highlight on the racing circuit and is expected to attract 150 athletes and 5000 spectators on October 25.

The day includes the Mick Chapman Memorial Criterium, a community ride, market stalls and entertainment.

‘‘The cycle classic is another example of Newcastle’s ability to host a large-scale events,’’ NRMA President and cycle classic ambassador Kyle Loades said.

‘‘I encourage Novocastrians to come down to Honeysuckle for a great day of racing action and to get involved in the community ride.’’

There will be prizes for the best dressed male, female, child and bike and all proceeds will go to Hunter Prostate Cancer Alliance and Procare.

Jonah Kennedy of New Lambton display riding a penny farthing bicycle at the waterfront at the launch of the ORICA Newcastle Cycle Classic, at the Crowne Plaza in Honeysuckle on Tuesday. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers