House fire causes more than 100k damage

DAMAGE: An accidental Sheffield fire was caused by a freezer in the shed. The home was uninsured. Pictures: Jason Hollister.A WOMAN, six cats and a dog, have escaped an early morning house fire without injury.
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The woman’s 100-year-old weatherboard house at Staverton caught alight in the roof section while she was sleeping.

The fire started in an old shed near the house.

The accidental fire was caused by a freezer in the shed.

The attending fire investigator said the blaze spread to the house after heat from the shed fire impinged on the roof, where it was largely able to be contained.

The fire, which happened in the early hours of yesterday morning, caused an estimated $120,000 damage.

The shed was razed to the ground.

It is believe the property, at 259 Staverton Road, was not insured.

Chief Tasmania Fire Service investigator, Gil Graham, was at the scene yesterday morning.

He said the woman and the animals were all inside the house as the fire took hold.

The woman, who did not want to be named, told

She said she was in bed and was woken up by what sounded like ”a bang in a chimney”.

She saw light coming from the shed blaze and called emergency services at 5.15am.

Volunteer fire units from Sheffield, Claude Road and Railton responded.

The fire was brought under control within the hour, Mr Graham said.

He said the fire was caused by a freezer in the shed.

”It’s important to keep extension leads free of any obstructions. In this case the freezer might have been sitting on the extension lead,” he said.

The woman said she also lost garden tools she had in the destroyed shed.

The house was not inhabitable after the fire.

The woman said there was also a one-bedroom unit on the property she would move into.

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.

Wynyard school gets $2m makeover

NEW LOOK: Students and guests at the official opening of St Brigid’s Catholic School’s new library, administration and nely refurbished classrooms. Picture: Kirsty Bennett. NEW facilities at St Brigid’s Catholic School in Wynyard will bring benefits to students for years to come, the Federal Member for Braddon, Sid Sidebottom said today.
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Speaking at the school’s ceremony for the opening of the $2,160,000 library, administration area and classroom refurbishments, Mr Sidebottom said the Australian Government’s Building the Education Revolution (BER) investment was delivering modern facilities to school students around Australia.

”The BER is the single biggest investment in Australian schools in our history,” he said.

”In the North-West and West coasts of Tasmania alone, 63 schools with a total of 95 projects have been funded under the BER.

”This represents an investment of more than $100 million in our region to enhance teaching and learning in our schools, investing in much needed school and community infrastructure and providing jobs in challenging economic times.”

Mr Sidebottom said the Government’s investment had resulted in libraries, science labs, classrooms and multipurpose halls being built across the country.

”They are enhancing learning environments for students and giving teachers and staff a more enjoyable place to work.”

Mr Sidebottom congratulated St Brigid’s Catholic School and the local community for their efforts in delivering this historic investment to their school.

Further information about this project and all schools funded under the BER is available at

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.

MULTIMEDIA: Anzac Day 2012

SHOW OF RESPECT: The crowd gathered at the Railton war memorial for Wednesday’s Anzac Day dawn service. Picture: Kelly Slater.NEARLY 20,000 Coasters paid tribute to our service men and women on Wednesday at services around the region.
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Ulverstone recorded its highest number of attendees for several years with about 4000 attending its main service.

Leighland Christian School student Sam Reeve was the guest speaker at the service.

He summed up Anzac Day better than most.

“If the Anzacs didn’t do what they did, the world would not be the place it is today,” he said.

Devonport also broke some attendance records, with 3000 making their way to Victoria Pde for the 6am dawn service.

Anzac Day addresses were given by Grade 10 student Laura Wood and Emily Pickett, the 2010 Frank MacDonald Memorial Prize recipient.

Devonport RSL Sub-Branch president, Grant Munday, said in recent years the early service had grown to be the biggest of the day.

“Today was the largest we have ever had, ” Mr Munday said.

Deputy Senior Naval Officer Tasmania Bill Canna was the guest speaker at the 11am Burnie Anzac Day service yesterday, addressing about 3000 people.

He retold the story of military personnel that arrived on the shores of Gallipoli, unprepared for the hardships ahead.

A little piece of history was created as the small West Coast town of Gormanston held its first ever Anzac Day service.

Meanwhile, more than 50 locals braved the chilly morning at Strahan’s Anzac Park for the dawn service.

In Queenstown, the streets were packed with families and school children who turned out in their hundreds to pay their respects.

Hundreds rallied at the Somerset and Wynyard Anzac Day services to keep the memory alive of those who fought in past and present wars.

At 90 years “young”, John Bates was one of many returned servicemen to attend the Wynyard service.

An increased number of young people attending the service brought a smile to the former teacher’s face.

Readers from Smithton to Latrobe shared their Anzac Day experience.

From all over the North-West, Advocate iPhone app users submitted photos illustrating how they commemorated Anzac Day. Including this shot at the Penguin Dawn Service. View the photos here.

Have a look at our other galleries – see Related Coverage on the right-hand side of the page

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.

Only Hearts Should Be Worn On Sleeves eBook tour

EARTHY HUMOUR: Former Advocate reporter Kellie O’Brien (White), who has published an eBook of her columns, relaxes with her daughter, Ella. Picture: Katrina Dodd.This is an extract from Kellie O’Brien’s Mum’s the Word column, which ran in The Advocate’s entertainment magazine in 2007. The column’s have been transformed into an eBook, titled, Only Hearts Should Be Worn On Sleeves: The Snotty Truth About Motherhood.
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August 22, 2007

HOW many times have you had to tell a member of the male population that size doesn’t matter?

Well beware, because when you have a bun in the oven and men try to remind you that size doesn’t matter, sorry, but you somehow know it does.

As a mum-to-be, everyone has an opinion on whether you’re tummy is too big or too small.

“Are you eating enough? You’re so tiny,” people say as they try and tickle it.

Note to those who have never been pregnant: Don’t touch a preggo woman’s belly unless you were responsible for its growth.

And even then, you still need permission or you could end up like male spiders: Eaten by their female partners after mating.

Actually, human females aren’t stupid enough to eat their husbands.

They know they’ll need them to get up for the 1am feed, 4am nappy change and 7am champagne breakfast in bed. But I digress.

So, if your tum-tum isn’t being described as “cute”, it’s: “Gawd, are you sure you haven’t got triplets in there?”.

It’s at this point you want to break out the cymbals and announce to all: “Yes, watch out, fatty boomba is comin’ on through”.

Then there’s those who ask “when are you due?”, before a look of horror as they realise you may simply have let yourself go.

And no amount of exercise is going to make that bulge look less like an addiction to chocolate mud cake.

Besides, you’d rather be lounging on the couch, a red cordial wine substitute in one hand and a copy of Kid Wrangling in the other.

After buying The Biggest Loser exercise DVD before getting up the duff, the only real heart raising workout performed since – apart from the obvious one – has been pelvic floor exercises.

It’s one form of exercise I’m happy to commit to 110% if it prevents me being labelled “biggest loser” after peeing myself in public.

So, as I fulfil my craving for mud cake (no ice cream and pickles for me, thanks) and pull my muffin top into my trousers, I’m resigned to the fact that size might matter – but I don’t care.

Mrs O’Brien now runs a successful blog called Three L’il Princesses, which is a continuation of the column that featured in The Advocate.

“>Click here,

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.

Sid’s shout during pub meet, greet

THEIR SHOUT: Braddon MHR Sid Sidebottom and Small Business Minister Brendan O’Connor host a “Pollies in the Pub” meet and greet session at Molly Malone’s in Devonport tonight.THE beers will be on Sid Sidebottom when the Braddon MHR and Small Business Minister Brendan O’Connor host a “Pollies in the Pub” meet and greet session at Molly Malone’s in Devonport tonight.
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Mr Sidebottom said politicians were social creatures and, while he enjoyed a good brew, tonight’s session was serious business in a less formal social setting.

“People can come in say hello, have a bite to eat or a lemonade, whisper suggestions or ask for advice and get some answers,” Mr Sidebottom said.

“We like to get around to people and this is one place they natter, it’s where they tell the real stories, but we’re going early so the stories don’t turn into legends.”

Pollies in the Pub will be held at Molly Malone’s Irish Pub, 34 Best St, Devonport, tonight from 5.45pm.

To book a spot, phone Mr Sidebottom’s office on 64311333 or email [email protected]

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.