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.

Just sit and reminisce

WAY TO REMEMBER: At St George’s Park for the unveiling of the memorial seat for Russell Majer are (from left) George Majer, Jenny Max and Halina Majer. Picture: Katrina Dodd.IT ONLY takes Jenny Max five minutes to walk to the park and sit on the seat dedicated to her son Russell.
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Ms Max, of Latrobe, said choosing to have a seat in the park as a space to remember and reflect as part of the Latrobe Council seat dedication project was an easy decision.

Her son Russell Majer would have turned 25 yesterday.

He committed suicide in November last year while in Melbourne where he was based attending Swinburne University.

Ms Max said after Mr Majer’s funeral in Melbourne she was undecided where to place his ashes.

“I was finding it hard to give up his ashes and then saw this idea from the council and thought it was a great idea.

“This way I don’t have to give up his ashes, I can keep them with me, but I also have somewhere to visit and remember him.

“The council have been really good. I had the choice of four colours for the seat and I chose grey as he liked that colour.

“It has a plaque attached with his name and date of birth and also saying we have donated it.

“It works out well as it was not expensive, and if I ever move or anything I can take ashes with me.

“The seat now has a meaning and will give people somewhere to sit and think and we can also scatter flowers there.”

Ms Max said she will be able to walk to the area on a daily basis.

“It has a nice outlook over the park and you can see the mountain in the background and it gives people a break to observe nature.”

Latrobe Mayor Mike Gaffney said the seat is the second installed from the council’s seat dedication project.

“In this case Jenny is remembering her son with a seat dedication, so perhaps this project may assist with the loss be it through suicide or otherwise,” he said.

If you or someone you know would like help or information about suicide contact Lifeline on 131114.

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.

Embracing Anzac spirit

Lawrence Corbett and his daughter, Helen THOUSANDS came in darkness to attend Devonport ‘s dawn Anzac Day service.
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Crowd numbers broke all previous records yesterday.

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.

He said it was hard to get accurate numbers, but estimated up to 3000 were at the dawn service and about 2000 were at the morning service.

Special mention was made at the morning service of the 27 members of the Devonport RSL Sub- Branch aged over 90, three of whom led the march.


“For anyone to have got through WW2 and make it to 90 that’s significant.”

Devonport Mayor Steve Martin spoke of Anzac Day being the “one day in our year that we as Australians gather in solemn remembrance of our men, women and our animals who have served and fought in war”.

Mr Munday said Anzac Day was a time to reflect on the service of all Australians who served in wars, including in Iraq and Afghanistan and in peacekeeping roles in more recent times.

“May we and our successors prove worthy of their sacrifice,” he said.

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

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.

12 Cats selected in NTFL squad

Wynyard’s Zac Smith was named in the NTFL representative squad. The cats had 12 players selected in the squad.WYNYARD has been rewarded for a stellar start to the 2012 season with a total of 12 players named in this year’s NTFL representative squad to take on the SFL next month.
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Named in the initial squad is dynamic on- ballers Zac Smith and Rhys Phillips, defenders Cameron Betts, David Fitzpatrick, Clinton Stretton and Hamish Shaw, goal kicking machines Nick Hall and Nick Pearce, big men Sam Douglas, George Walker and Gregg Sharman along with exciting youngster Declan Moore.

“It is a just reward for their start to the year and a testament to the way their players have stepped up this season,” NTFL coach Dale Perry said.

“We’re confident we have put together the best side possible to defeat (the SFL) and that we haven’t left anyone out.

“We’ve got a good mix of height, pace and players who can be moved around, along with plenty of experience.

For East Devonport, coach Daniel Freshney has made the squad along with recruit Sam Rundle, Alex Baldock, Sam Borlini and Brodie Sheahan.

It is no secret there is ill feeling between Freshney and Perry given Freshney’s controversial switch to the Swans in the off season, but Perry wouldn’t be drawn into whether or not the two could put aside their differences in the lead-up to the game.

Despite not having played a game this season after undergoing shoulder surgery earlier in the year, Penguin’s Brad McDonald has been named in the squad along with 39-year-old ruckman Brad Davis.

“Brad (Davis) may be the oldest ruckman in the competition, but in my eyes he is one of the best,” Perry said.

“He has been exceptional this season and I’m looking forward to working with him again.

“As for Brad McDonald, he is an exciting player and even though he hasn’t played a game, I have no doubt he will be up and about.”

The usual suspects for Latrobe have again been named with Gavin Woodcock, Adam Jeffrey, Brodie Deverell and Josh Holland key inclusions, while Jacob Shaw has also been included this season.

While an initial squad of 36 has been announced, the final team will hinge on the Tasmanian Football Council’s under 23 state team.

A total of 15 players including Moore, Douglas, Pearce, Hall, Borlini, Baldock, Sheahan, Rundle, Shaw, Clint Riley, Jason Radford, Simon Vanderfeen, Josh Walmsley and Cameron Upton have been named in the under 23 side that will take on the NTFA in Launceston on May 20.

The NTFL versus SFL game will be played the day before on May 19.

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.

4 Latrobe boxers head to elite titles

Former Australian champion and Commonwealth Games representative Luke Woods will compete in the Elite Champion Titles in New South Wales, fighting in the 64kg division.WHILE Jackson Woods will fly its flag at the London Olympics, it doesn’t mean the rest of the Latrobe Boxing Club is resting on its laurels.
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The club is sending four members to the Elite Champion Titles in New South Wales this weekend.

It’s a tournament club coach Craig Woods rates highly.

“It’s like a mini Australian title where each weight division has four fighters,” Woods said.

“The great thing is you are guaranteed two fights, and with Olympic selection out of the way our main aim is to get as many fights as possible for the rest of the year.”

Former Australian champion and Commonwealth Games representative Luke Woods headlines the quartet and will fight in the 64kg division.

Craig said New South Welshman Darrell Borg would pose the biggest threat to Luke’s hopes of taking out the title.

“He (Borg) will be very handy,” Woods said.

“But Luke was just beaten in the final at the Australian Championships a few months ago and is in good shape.”

Nick Cooney is also making the trip north, with Irishman Ciaran Bates one of the men standing in his way of winning the 60kg division.

Matt Newitt will step into the ring in the 60kg division while Dylan Hardy will carry the club’s hopes in the 75kg division.

Woods expects Hardy and Victorian Jake Carr to produce one of the fights of the tournament.

“My son Aaron has beaten him (Carr) twice, but he has improved a lot since then,” Woods said.

“Dylan is a Youth Commonwealth Games representative and it will be a good tussle.”

Woods said it was encouraging to see so many of the club’s members fighting at the top level.

“This weekend will give all the boys good exposure,” he said.

“To have four boys nominate and get invitations is a huge boost for the club.

“It’s all part of our goal at next year’s Australian Championships, which is a seeding event for the Commonwealth Games.”

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.

Penguin in control from first bounce

UP IN THE AIR: Penguin ruckman Brad Davis goes for the ball in the clash against Ulverstone yesterday. Picture: Kelly Slater.NEVER before has an Ulverstone NTFL side lost to Penguin by more than it did in the Anzac Day clash yesterday.
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Ulverstone supporters were leaving at three quarter time as the Two Blues thumped the Robins by 94 points, 22.23 (155) to 8.13 (61).

Widely expected to be a fiery encounter the match fizzled after Penguin took control of the game early.

Kicking with a four-goal breeze, Penguin entered quarter time leading by 34 points after booting 7.5.

Ulverstone had a chance to get back into the match in the second, but squandered its chance.

The Robins kicked 1.4 in the first seven minutes and 1.7 for the term.

After holding the Two Blues for the first stages of that quarter, the Robins allowed Penguin coach Jason Ling to kick a goal.

Goals from Chris McDonald and Rodney King followed and Penguin had won the quarter, despite kicking into the breeze.

Ulverstone never got back into the game.

The Robins were toothless in attack, thanks largely to the play of Penguin defenders.

Matthew Wooldridge and Troy Dean, when back there, took mark upon contested mark as the Robins’ forwards struggled to get any of the ball.

With Rodney King and Todd Munro running rampant through the middle, the Two Blues picked up perhaps their finest win of the season.

“Last week was when we turned it around,” Penguin coach Ling said of his side’s current form.

“We can keep improving, we could have easily dropped off in that last quarter there but I think we still had 16 tackles in that last quarter, so we were still working pretty hard.”

Addressing his side after the match, Ling described the team’s defensive effort as perhaps the best-ever during his tenure at the club.

The mood was much different in the Ulverstone change rooms where Ulverstone coach Scott Blair lamented his side’s missed opportunities in the second quarter.

“We couldn’t put them under scoreboard pressure early in the game,” Blair said.

“In the second quarter we kicked 1.7 with the breeze.

“We’ve just got to take those opportunities in the early parts of the game, and it’s just something that we’re not doing, we’re just not.”

This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.