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Warrandyte residents praised for campaign


WARRANDYTE residents demonstrated remarkable maturity and rationality when confronted with a disaster scenario last year, according to Joe Buffone, director of risk and resilience at Emergency Management Victoria.

Mr Buffone was referring to his appearance on an expert emergency services panel at the ‘What if it’s Warrandyte’ scenario event last year.

“I was expecting to get attacked from all sides for not doing enough, but people responded thoughtfully and sensibly as the disaster scenario unfolded,” he said. “It was a very well run community event”.

Mr Buffone was commenting at the Monash University Disaster Resilience Initiative conference at the end of July where the ‘Be Ready Warrandyte’ campaign was showcased.

Several other participants were generous in their praise.
“We are still using the humerous video, ‘Do you have a fire plan? In New South Wales” said Tony Jarrow of the NSW Rural Fire Service.

The video (pictured) can be viewed here

Lauren West of Surf Coast Shire said that they regularly consulted the ‘Be Ready Warrandyte’ website for information that may be useful to them. BRW also helped the Warbuton and St Andrews community and liaised with the Yarra Ranges Council Officers. The Park Orchards community is organising a similar Scenario Event for October this year which will welcome attendance from Warrandyte residents who missed last year’s event.

 

Warrandyte residents petition Manningham council to oppose petrol station at VCAT


WARRANDYTE residents turned out in force to petition Manningham City Council in opposition to the construction of the proposed petrol station near the roundabout in Yarra Street.

The submitters meeting at council offices was attended by the three Mullum Mullum ward councillors, mayor Cr Paul McLeish, Cr Meg Downie and Cr Sophie Galbally, and Cr Dot Haynes.

Dick Davies presented on behalf of the WCA, and Grant Waldram and Maurice Burley on behalf of the Warrandyte Character Protection Group. Several residents also presented a case against what they believe to be “inappropriate development”.

davies

WCA president Mr Davies

Residents made a case suggesting the development would be a first in what is supposed to be a Neighbourhood Residential Zone, that it would completely marr the ‘Gateway to Warrandyte’ aspect at the roundabout, that it could not be considered part of the West End complex, that disturbance as a result of all night access would be a problem, that bushfire and water contamination risks were exacerbated and many other concerns. WCA called on council to strongly oppose the appeal to VCAT with legal counsel and expert witnesses.

The developer declined to attend the submitters meeting and has appealed directly to VCAT.

The VCAT hearing is on October 19 and will last five days. At the request of the WCA, VCAT has ordered the proponent to produce new plans by August 14 allowing all parties two months to review the new plans before the hearing.

The WCA submission reads:

WCA Submission to the MCC submitters hearing

Officers report on 1,3,5 yarra street (pl13/023819)

The Warrandyte Community Association has a mandate from its membership to:

  • Promote all aspects of community life in Warrandyte
  • Defend the character and heritage of the Township, and
  • Protect the environment and encourage restoration and regeneration of native flora and fauna.

Our feedback over the years is that any new development should preserve this character and feel of Warrandyte.

Consequently, WCA has adopted the view that any large development, such as a fuel outlet, must blend in with the heritage character and environmental aspects of the Township. It is our view that the current proposal for a petrol station at 1,3,5 Yarra Street does not meet these criteria. While some might want a service station in Warrandyte, it is impossible to drive more than 10 minutes without finding one – some of which operate 7 x 24.

The WCA is one of 68 local objectors to this proposal. We oppose the current plan on the grounds of Traffic management, Visual amenity, Heritage streetscape, Loss of roadside vegetation and Environmental concerns.

Specifically these are:

  • As detailed in the Council Officers’ report, the proposal is inconsistent with Council’s planning scheme and neighbourhood character provisions. The scale and intensity of the proposal is an overdevelopment of the site from many perspectives.
  • By any reasonable judgement, the proposal fails to satisfy Clause 52.15 of the planning scheme, which states that: “The amenity of the locality must not be adversely affected by activity on site, the appearance of any building, works, or materials, emissions from the premises or in any other way.” There is no way that the proposal can come close to meeting this criterion.
  • Neighbourhood Residential Zone is the most restrictive of the Government’s three residential zones. There are no service stations in other NRZ. This would be the first , making a mockery of the purpose of the NRZ, which is —“to manage and ensure that development respects identified neighbourhood character, heritage, environmental or landscape characteristics”.
  • The Design and Development Overlay 3 (DDO3) adds another layer to the NRZ. The proposal appears to be in direct contravention of the objectives of the overlay.

(which seeks to ensure that:

  1. development responds to the area’s environmental characteristics;
  2. development recognises the existing infrastructure capacities and does not generate demand for extensive upgrades of infrastructure, including the standard of roads and drainage;
  3. development responds to the area’s environmental characteristics, including topography, soils and vegetation;
  4. development is sympathetic to the existing built form and style and retains the predominance of single detached housing and discourages other forms of works.)
  • No other businesses operate 24 x 7 in Warrandyte. The lights, traffic noise and disturbance would be unreasonable in a residential zone. The presence of a 7 x 24 convenience store (that could easily morph into a fast food outlet) would significantly change the character and ‘Country Town’ feel.
  • Furthermore, there is the potential for contamination in the flood zone.
  • Also there will be additional traffic impacts on an area already suffering significant congestion.
  • Removal of six large mature yellow box gumtrees contradicts the objectives and guidelines in the planning scheme for this area.

We note that the applicant has decided to bypass appropriate Council procedures with a direct appeal to VCAT, with changes that may appeal to the referral authorities, rather than amend the application to address the issues raised by Council Officers. At the request of the WCA, VCAT has ordered the proponent to produce new plans by August 14th allowing two months to review the new plans before the hearing.

We support the Manningham Council Officers Report (PL 13/023819) which proposes that Council oppose the application to VCAT. We urge Council to vigorously oppose this application and dedicate significant resources to fight it, including, but not limited to:

  • An experienced planning lawyer with a track record of defeating inappropriate developments at VCAT, and
  • Expert witnesses as recommended by the planning solicitor.

If this proposal were to be built, the character of Warrandyte, a resource not just for the residents but all of Melbourne, would be significantly and detrimentally affected.

We thank you for your time in consideration of this matter.

Dick Davies, President, Warrandyte Community Association Inc.

 

Burglary at Ruby Tuesday


THIEVES smashed their way into Ruby Tuesday and have stolen items and caused damage estimated at $10,000 after what is being described as a brazen early morning attack on Saturday.

At 6.45am it is believed three men wearing headlamps and driving a medium sized hatchback dark in colour, similar to a Mazda 3 shape car, used some sort of hammer or sledgehammer to break into the popular jewellery store on Melbourne Hill Rd.

A security camera in the top left hand corner on the exterior of the premises captured the incident on film and a passerby witnessed the men breaking in through the front door. At the time the Diary went to print no arrests had been made and the security camera footage hadn’t been viewed.

Cabinets were left shattered
and some jewellery remained, including gold items. Fortunately thieves didn’t rob the safe, nor did they enter the workshop
area, according to Ruby Tuesday owners Terry Rafferty and Anita Sigmund who believe the robbery must have been “a smash-and- grab” incident. “They haven’t taken the most expensive things, it seems, and they were obviously in a hurry.”

Crime investigation squad members from Box Hill were at the scene on Saturday morning taking fingerprints and looking for other clues.

A post about the robbery on
the Diary Facebook page reached almost 10,000 people in social media and drew about 50 comments from locals who were appalled by the robbery to one of our favourite business houses.

Things to do these school holidays in Warrandyte and surrounds


Stuck for ideas these school holidays? We’ve put our heads together in the Diary office and also asked friends of our Warrandyte Diary Facebook page  to help us come up with these beaut suggestions.

Bounce into action

Are your kids bouncing off the walls at home? Well why don’t you take them somewhere where bouncing is actually encouraged and loads of fun! Bounce is a massive indoor trampoline park with more than 50 trampolines and giant airbags with slam dunk arenas, wall running and dodgeball courts rolled in. The kids will never got bored here and there is a café so you can chill out while the kids go wild. Or you can jump into the action too. Bounce is at 22 Joseph St, Blackburn North.

More: bounceinc.com.au/locations/blackburn-north

Go to the movies

Want something a little bit more relaxing? Croydon Cinemas is just around the corner! I know what you’re thinking: “I would love to take my kids to the movies but they’re so expensive.” Well, not any more! Croydon Cinemas tickets are really affordable – children’s tickets are $9.50 and adults just $12.50. There are heaps of great movies to see including Minions, Inside Out and if you’re kids are a bit older, Jurassic World. Croydon Cinemas are located at 1,3-5 Hewish Road, Croydon.

More: www.croydoncinemas.com.au

Load up on lollies

Of course you can’t watch movies without some yummy snacks, so head over to see Francesca and the team at Warrandyte Lollies and Treats for the most delicious confectionery that all kids will love. She has great sweets from all around the world including Hersheys and Ben & Jerry’s from America, Speculaas and Syrup Wafers from the Netherlands, Walnut Whips and English Cadbury from England, Quavers and Monster Muches from Scotland, and don’t forget the good old Aussie treats such as Sherbert Fountains, Liquorice Logs, and Timeless Drops from Sovereign Hill. They have an unlimited selection over at 207 Yarra Street, Warrandyte. How could you ever just drive past, especially with hungry kids in the back seat!

More: www.warrandytelolliesandtreats.com.au

Jump on a horse

If your kids are animal lovers, and in particular horse lovers, then we have two fantastic suggestions. Head to the Ponyland Equestrian Centre for an amazing horse riding experience where you can ride in a group through the beautiful native bush with experienced leaders – your kids will never get lost or bored. These horses are as tame as they come and they love people, especially kids. Ponyland Equestrian Centre is at 35 Osborne Road, Christmas Hills (make sure to pack the carrots and apples!).  Otherwise, Tandivale Equestrian Centre and Pony Club Holiday Program in South Warrandyte is going to be a big hit over the next fortnight. Even if your kids have never ridden a horse and they just want to have a go, the school holiday program at Tandivale covers it all. Your kids will learn the basic skills they need to groom, saddle and ride their own horse or pony for the day. The day runs from 9am to 4pm with a BBQ lunch provided. Give your children an experience they will remember these holidays at 88 Johansons Road, Warrandyte. Karen Paine and Marnie Kruyer sent Tandivale’s School Holiday Program into us over Facebook. Thanks for the great suggestion!

More: www.tandivale.com/holidayprogram.htm or www.yellowpages.com.au/vic/christmas-hills/ponyland-equestrian-centre-13672134-listing.html

Go 10 pin bowling

If you’re feeling like a little bit of competition these holidays then you should head over to AMF 10 Pin Bowling and challenge your kids in a game of this great activity that everyone in the family will love. They are running a special offer for these school holidays:  two games of bowling or laser PLUS 5 arcade tokens, shoe hire and a $5 return game pass for only $19.90 per person. What better time to head over to the Forest Hill complex or the Knox complex, so get striking! Thanks to Sheya Atherton who made this great suggestion and many others on our Facebook page. Check them out at our Facebook page

More: www.amfbowling.com.au

Head for the Dark Zone

Are your kids more into the athletic, skill and teamwork sort of activities? Then you should be in your car heading to Box Hill for games of Laser Tag at Dark Zone! Dark Zone is one of the only Laser Tag centres in Australia to offer the latest Helios Pro Laser Tag technology as well as having the biggest and best multi-level arena in Australia. Dark Zone offers the best variety of deals for all groups from kids events and birthday parties to corporate events and overnight lock-in. They also have many deals for these holidays. Head to 942-946 Whitehorse Road in Box Hill for a crazy, fun time.

More: www.darkzone.com.au/beta

Visit chocolate heaven!

Are you and your kids chocoholics? Then Yarra Valley Chocolaterie is definitely for you! Enjoy free delicious chocolate tastings and watch some of their European chocolatiers create over 250 of their incredible chocolates. They also have a range of ice creams for you to taste and enjoy. If the kids are getting a bit tired then scoot over to their café where they specialise in amazing sweets. Once the kids have fueled up on chocolate then they can run around and play on the beautiful lawns and gardens. What’s not to love about a place where the kids are entertained and you get to indulge in chocolate? NOTHING! So get in your car and head over to 35 Old Healesville Road (Cnr Melba Highway), Yarra Glen.

More: www.yvci.com.au

Spin those wheels in a Go Kart

Those looking for a bit of an adrenaline rush, and you’re willing drive a bit further, should set your GPS sights on 55 Waterview Close, Dandenong South to experience Le Mans Go Karts Melbourne. With more than 23 acres and four massive tracks you’re bound to have a great day! Le Mans Go Karts provide you with all the safety equipment you need so don’t worry if you don’t do this often, you’ll be safe. With great prices and ultimate experiences, everyone in your family will love a day out at the track.

More: www.lemansgokarts.com.au

Get ready to be splattered with paint

Looking for a bit of fun with your kids where you can shoot them? Then Melbourne Indoor Paintball is the place to go. But don’t worry, it’s all in the name of good fun. Even though the drive is a little long, the experience and fun is totally worth it. The address is 25 Salmon Street, Port Melbourne, and just five minutes from Melbourne CBD. There are many exciting fields, fully carpeted and with a sniper tower and surround sound. What better way to entertain the kids for a day.

More: www.melbourneindoorpaintball.com.au/index.html

Read a good book in our beautiful library

Are your kids books worms or have always wanted a PlayStation? Then visit the Warrandyte Library at 168 Yarra Street for a quiet but fun afternoon. The library has such a variety of books for kids to choose from and now with the PlayStation kids can take turns playing fun interactive games. There are also DVDs for the kids if they’re keen to borrow a free movie. The library has some great holiday activities for the kids and staff are always happy to help them find books. So c’mon, book lovers, visit the Warrandyte Library. Sheya Atherton and Michele Petalas both suggested this one on our Facebook page.

More: www.wml.vic.gov.au/Page/Page.aspx?Page_id=848

Join the Circus Oz team

After a fantastic and funny show for the kids? Well you’re in luck because Circus Oz is back in Melbourne these school holidays from June 17 to July 12 at Birrarung Marr. The new show is reportedly one of the company’s best shows yet, full of fun, laughter, jokes, comedy and of course circus tricks. This would be a great show for any kids but especially for kids who are interested in the arts, gymnastics, dancing and acrobatics. Hurry! Tickets are going fast.

More: www.ticketmaster.com.au/section?tm_link=tm_header

A day out at the theatre

Looking for a more gentle, relaxing outing? One is certainly on offer at the Regent Theatre where The Lion King is on until July 3. Tickets are selling out very fast for this incredible show and before long they’ll all be gone. Don’t miss the opportunity to take your children to what must be one of their favourite movies recreated into an amazing live theatrical performance.

More: www.ticketmaster.com.au/Disney-Presents-The-Lion-King-Australia-tickets/artist/820969?tm_link=tm_homeA_b_10002_1

Visit Edendale

Rug up and take your kids over to Edendale farm at 30 Gastons Road, Eltham. Meet and feed some of the farm animals, try out the new activities revolving around patterns, pictures and textures or book into one of the wildlife or art school holiday programs.

More: www.edendale.vic.gov.au/Visit_Edendale/School_Holiday_Activities

Whatever floats your boat

Want to take your kids to some place fun where they probably haven’t been to before? Inflatable World is the place to go. They say it’s all about having fun, so bring the whole family and bounce on in to Inflatable World.  It’s not just for the kids – they encourage the parents to have fun too. Sessions are for two hours per single entry fee after which time you will be pooped anyway. You can play on the inflatable activities as many times as you like during the session and  supervisors are there to make sure everyone is safe and gets a fair go.

More: www.inflatableworldoz.com.au/stadiums/oakleigh

Lots on in Nillumbik Shire

Nillumbik Shire Council has many events running throughout these school holidays. If your kids are interested in helping out with the environment and have a real green thumb then these are perfect: Backyard chooks for beginners, Stories of Place – Heritage Walk, Energy Freedom workshop 5 – solar electricity, Beekeeping – a taster, Set up and maintain a worm farm, and so many more. Don’t let your kids sit at home and do nothing these holidays, get them involved and actively learning while having fun in the outdoors.

More: www.nillumbik.vic.gov.au/Environment/News_Activities_and_Events/Activities_Program

Warrandyte Basketball holiday programs

It has been another great term of basketball in Warrandyte and while the holidays are a fantastic time to get a little rest, they are also perfect if your kids want to stay active and participate in some basketball extension activities. There are some wonderful opportunities open to the Redbacks and Venom players, some of which are Warrandyte Basketball-based and some are offered by external organisations.

More: www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=1-4089-0-0-0&sID=112048&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=35114007

Grab a DVD and chill at home

Can’t take your kids out but can’t keep them entertained at home? Video Ezy at The Pines could be your best friend. They have a wide selection of movies for all ages including the new Cinderella movie, Paper Planes, Big Hero 6, Paddington and so many more. What kid doesn’t enjoy sitting and watching movies all day? NONE! So head over to Video Ezy and grab some movies for great prices and pop the kids down in front of the TV for the day and they’ll stay out of your hair.

More: www.videoezy.com.au

A big thank you to all the people who made excellent suggestions on Facebook.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Break-ins on the rise


WARRANDYTE police and Manningham Crime Investigation Unit (CIU) are urging residents to be on the lookout for suspicious activity after several houses in Warrandyte were been broken into last month.

Detective senior sergeant Matt Volk from Manningham CIU says thieves from a specific crime syndicate have made off with $4 million worth of goods from 28 burglaries and there has been a huge spike in burglaries in the area over the past few months.

The break-ins generally happened during evenings between Thursdays and Sundays from 5pm-10pm. Houses in St Muir Drive, Oakland Drive and Pamela Court were targeted and significant amounts of cash and jewellery were stolen. The Warrandyte Cafe was reportedly broken into over the Queen’s Birthday Weekend as the Diary went to print.

These burglaries form part of a larger series with houses in Donvale also being targeted by thieves. Affluent properties are the specific focus of the thieves and in at least one particular case a resident was downstairs in her house while the intruders ransacked upstairs, making off with jewellery and irreplaceable family heirlooms.

A common tactic of the thieves is to come knocking on the door and asking for a stranger who does not live at the residence.

Recording descriptions of these people, including vehicle types and registrations, is helpful to police, and of most benefit when the information is reported at the time.

At a press conference held on May 26, Det Snr Sgt Matt Volk said “we’re urging the community to come forward if you see anything suspicious call 000 immediately”.

Police have stepped up patrols in the areas but need the residents of Warrandyte to be alert to any suspicious activity.

Police urge all residents to communicate with their neighbours and start a dialogue so that anything out of the ordinary can be quickly identified and the police called in for suspicious circumstances.

Police say many people are concerned about interfering or wrongly accusing people of a crime, however, the spate of burglaries has proven residents can never be too vigilant, so residents are asked to not hesitate in calling the police if something’s not quite right.

Meanwhile, some time overnight on May 28, a vehicle in Fossickers Way and another on Harris Gully Road had their side windows smashed and personal items, loose change and personal belongings were stolen.

Also, on at least three separate occasions in May, a red and black laundry bag containing soiled linen has been stolen from outside the medical centre on Yarra and Trezise streets.

Anyone with any information
on these incidents is urged to call Crimestoppers on 1800 333 000 or Warrandyte Police on 9844 3231.

Olivigna applies for helipad in Warrandyte


AN application for a proposed helipad at Olivigna in South Warrandyte is being considered by Manningham council.

The helipad will enable emergency services to have easier and more immediate access to the estate’s surrounding area.

Olivigna property manager John Di Pietro said the threat of bushfires prompted the business to apply for the helipad permit.

“During the height of a particularly hot and threatening summer we thought about our estate and its positioning and realised that if local emergency services could fly in and out of here it would really help them, which is essentially protect and help our community,” Mr Di Pietro said.

Although the proposal has been welcomed by emergency services, including the police and the local CFAs, it has received about 60 objections. Nonetheless, Olivigna management maintain that the helipad will not be used often and, when it is, will create minimal disturbance.

The number of flights will be limited to two arrivals and two departures per month and the size and type of helicopter will be restricted according to the acoustic report. As per Clause 52.15 of the Manningham Planning Scheme, flights will not take place before 7am (8am on weekends or holidays) or after sunset on weekdays.

Mr Di Pietro said that two acoustic reports indicate that the noise generated by the helicopters is well below the Environment Protection Authority 1254 Noise Control Guidelines. He also reiterated that the proposed flight path will not impact on the neighbourhood as the helicopters will only cross the Olivigna properties.

 

Traffic gridlock

THE traffic congestion at Warrandyte Bridge has been a growing point of contention for Warrandyte locals with queues of cars often backed up for a few kilometres during peak hours.

The daily commute is becoming unbearable for many, causing frus- tration and concerns over residents’ safety in emergency situations.

The increasing outrage prompted North Warrandyte resident Jennie Hill to create the Fix the Warrandyte Bottleneck Facebook group in April last year. The page aims to encourage discussion about the congestion on the bridge, which continues on Yarra St, and find solutions. At this stage, reaching consensus is proving difficult.

“We can’t agree with the community on exactly what should be done to solve the problem so we can’t find a solution,” Ms Hill said.

With much discussion unfolding on the Fix the Warrandyte Bottleneck and Warrandyte Diary Facebook pages, residents are determined to find a solution. Suggestions include the installation of traffic lights (operating at peak times) at the roundabout of the bridge intersection, encouraging use of public buses, and widening of the bridge and/or building another bridge.

While many solutions seem plausible, opinion is divided. Some residents believe installing traffic lights is logical while others believe that common courtesy and giving way is more efficient. Construction of another bridge along the Yarra River in Warrandyte also seems a solution for some, but others may view it as an eyesore, not only damaging the character of Warrandyte but encouraging more traffic to pass through the quaint suburb.

Many locals are especially upset the traffic is not Warrandyte residents but from those living in surrounding suburbs. There is speculation the development of housing estates in areas such as South Morang, Epping and Whittlesea has created more traffic moving towards the city or down south.

“The traffic is not all local. I believe it’s from the growth areas around Doreen and Yan Yean looking for a way to go south without using the toll road. I also believe it is getting worse!” Lisa Upson commented on the Diary’s Facebook page.

The City of Whittlesea, which includes the suburbs of South Morang, Epping and Whittlesea, is one of the fastest growing municipalities in Australia.

According to population experts, forecast.id, the population of the City of Whittlesea is set to increase by almost 40,000 by 2020, indicating congestion is unlikely to ease in the future.

Snail’s pace: Jennie Hill stands near the Warrandyte bridge bottleneck during the school drop-off peak. “You can’t put the genie back in the bottle. We can’t go back to ‘old’ Warrandyte. The traffic is here and it’s only going to get worse. We need to stop complaining and find a solution.”

Resident Dori Jennings said her son had missed his connecting bus to school on several occasions because the first bus takes almost half an hour just to travel from Pigeon Bank Road to the IGA on Warrandyte Road about 4km.

Although the excessive traffic con- gestion is inconvenient and causing patience to wear thin, concerns sur- rounding emergency management are not being dismissed. Warrandyte is listed as one of 52 high fire risk locations in Victoria, according to the CFA. Along with narrow roads and numerous dead ends, the bridge congestion is another factor contrib- uting to Warrandyte’s access issues.

In the event of a bushfire, a mass evacuation may become a critical problem as the bridge is the only one out of Warrandyte.

“It’s only a matter of time before it’s a matter of life and death. How

do emergency vehicles get through traffic congestion in an emergency let alone bushfire situations?” Jade Shoppee commented on the Diary’s Facebook page.

Ms Hall acknowledges opinions are varied because of residents’ needs and proximity to the bridge, however, she maintains the foremost issue for everyone should be the preservation of life in the event of an emergency.

“The argument has to be turned around. People cannot look at it from the perspective of what is going to benefit them most but instead look at what’s important and what can potentially save lives… it’s about preserving lives and not just a matter of personal preferences.”

Member for Warrandyte Ryan Smith has been seeking action on the matter from the Andrews gov- ernment for some time.

After Mr Smith took Emergency Management Commissioner Craig Lapsley to see the congestion, Mr Lapsley immediately initiated discus- sions with VicRoads and local councils to install Disaster Plan (Displan) boxes at both ends of the bridge. The Displan boxes were installed in late 2014 and contain emergency equipment to assist with traffic in the event of an emergency.

“Our No.1 concern during an emer- gency is the safe evacuation of people,” Mr Smith said.

Mr Smith said he contacted the Minister for Roads and Road Safety in December last year but there has not been any more progress on the matter; the minister has reiterated that VicRoads would continue to work with the Warrandyte commu- nity on local traffic management issues.

According to VicRoads metro north-west regional director Adam Maguire, VicRoads is working with the CFA and Melbourne Water to look at water access and supply for fire brigades and is also investigating a range of options for this Yarra River crossing, including the construction of a second bridge or the widening of the existing bridge.

Mr Maguire said funding for these activities would be considered.

Although no plans are final, Mr Smith is determined to find a resolution for the community.

“I will continue to hold the Andrews government to account on this matter and to push for the study that was started last year to continue so that a workable solution can be found.”

To have your say or to read more about it, join the Fix the Warrandyte Bottleneck page on Facebook and keep an eye on the Diary Facebook page for more updates.

What’s on in Warrandyte – Five for Friday


Warrandyte is getting a taste of wintry weather – 16-degrees four days in a row and rain forecast. What to do aside from snuggling up with a loved one in front of fire? Try these:

1. Mother’s Day is Sunday and the Warrandyte Business Association will be having some musos doing the rounds at local cafes including Caz Nickson and her band A Country Practice outside the Stonehouse Gallery.

2. Peter Grant is rocking up a storm at the Grand Hotel Warrandyte tonight. Be There.

3. Ona & Syd have their open studios over the weekend at the corner of Henley and Oxley roads, Bend of Islands. Celebrating their joint 100 years of art making. Enjoy a cuppa in front of the fire and admire some beautiful pieces of art.

4. Venom’s Youth League women will be tearing up the court against Corio Bay Stingrays from 7pm tomorrow night at Warrandyte stadium. Be sure to cheer the girls on and watch some first class basketball action.

5. Remember to give your Mum a big cuddle and tell her you love her!

Diggers, we remember you – a beautiful ANZAC Day march and service


AN enormous turnout of locals paid their respects to our fallen with a special Centenary Dawn Service at Stiggants Reserve in Warrandyte this morning after the march.

The scene couldn’t have been more Warrandytian – more than a thousand residents lined Yarra St for the early morning march before walking to Stiggants Reserve for a moving service.Anzac Ben copy A mild, calm morning set the scene and towering gum trees on the banks of the Yarra provided a backdrop with branches clearly the best seats in the house for the vocal resident kookaburras and other birdlife.

From babies, children and pets to families, our senior citizens, dignitaries and particularly our 93-year-old last surviving digger, Ben Jones (pictured with his daughter Helen), the atmosphere was emotion-charged and everyone united as one to pay their respects.

To commemorate the 100th anniversary, the special service by the RSL Warrandyte Sub-Branch was headed up by immediate past president Henk Van Der Helm and included a Catafalque Party, bagpipers, singing by the Bellbird Singers, and a rousing rendition of Eric Bogle’s  The Band Played Walzting Matilda by Barry Carrozi.

That was followed by a touching poem and prayer, the wreath laying ceremony, The Ode by Robin Batty, Lament, a heart-warming Last Post and minute’s silence as rain started to fall and the sun started to rise. After the service, hundreds converged on the RSL Clubrooms for a Gunfire Breakfast hosted by the Lions Club.

Diggers, we remember you.

(More in the May edition of the Diary)

Pictures: BILL MCAULEY

 

What’s on in Warrandyte – Five For Friday


Another home game for the Bloods, ANZAC Day activities and some rip-roaring entertainment. Why wouldn’t you wanna be in Warrandyte in the coming days …

1. Warrandyte RSL dawn service, Stiggants Reserve at 6.15am. It’s 100 Years of ANZAC, the spirit lives 2014-2018. The march will commence at 6am from the car park opposite the pub and end at Stiggants where the service will take place. After the service, everyone is invited back to the RSL for a Gunfire Breakfast hosted by the Lions Club.

2. That’s not all that’s happening at the RSL. Book in Sunday for Bands By The Bridge, and it’s a beauty! Greg Champion and The Useful Members of Society is on from 4pm-8pm. BYO food platter welcome, band donations appreciated. Inquiries 9844 3567.  113 Brackenbury St, enter via Mitchell Ave.

3. If that doesn’t tickle your fancy, then rock on to the Grand Hotel Warrandyte for entertainment all weekend, including Electric Intent tonight and then the very talented Madison performing from 3.30pm on Sunday.

3. Peace Labyrinth Opening, Warrandyte Uniting Church,  Taroona Avenue, 10.15am Sunday April 26.

4. Bloods are back – two wins on the trot and looking menacing in the 4th Division of the EFL. Tomorrow they’re home again, this time up against the visiting Kilsyth. Who’s going to kick a bag this weekend? Dunny? Or Froudy?

5. Nillumbik Artists Open Studios is unmissable from between 11am to 5pm on May 2-3. The studios of over 30 artists will provide an intimate and privileged insight into their works. Inquiries: 1300 660 072.

 

Five For Friday (April 17) in Warrandyte


What’s happening in Warrandyte and surrounds? Here’s five things to stir the senses and your interest …

1. Bloods’ first home game for the season at our beautiful Warrandyte Reserve and the sensational new facilities. Get up in the grand stand, buy a beer and a Bloods burger from Bucky and his team and enjoy a great game as the Red & White do battle with Ferntree Gully all day in the U19s, Reserves and seniors

2. Nillumbik Youth Festival will be a hive of activity on Sunday from 11am to 4pm at Edendale Farm on Gaston Rd in Eltham. Let’s party, kids!

3.  Free plants – Stoney Creek and Yarra Restoration Group ask you to join them at a free BBQ to hear their plans and help them restore the reserve at the Boulevard in North Warrandyte. Saturday (tomorrow) at 4pm. Contact Gill on 0403 051 766

4. Don’t forget your copy of the latest edition of the Warrandyte Diary, it’s a corker, 40 pages packed with fun stuff, news, around the home page, travel stories, sport, food, school, community issues and loads more. Available at various pick up points, mainly Quinton’s IGA.

5. Give Sue a hug at Quinton’s IGA in the coming week and say congratulations on 20 years of great work and for her big friendly smile at our local supermarket. She’s a little ripper!

Fire strikes our local


A SMALL fire at the Grand Hotel resulted in the evacuation of patrons and structural damage before being brought under control by the CFA.

Flames were localised to a section of the balcony bar, which was hosting a function at the time. According to manager Peter Appleby the origin of the fire hasn’t yet been determined.

Although the lives of patrons were not threatened, a level of panic was reached when flames and smoke became visible.

After the duty manager was informed of the smoke, the Warrandyte CFA swiftly arrived on the scene and were backed up by units from South and North Warrandyte.

Evacuation of the function was a well coordinated by the authorities in front of a curious crowd of locals who gathered to witness proceedings.

Staff member on the scene Nick Schlueter described the day as a “rapid change of events”.

“Despite a fire breaking loose and the whole venue evacuated, I was confident we would still continue to serve customers, which we did,” Schlueter said.

Damage to the premise was limited by an excellent effort by the CFA.

“Minor repairs are required to the balcony section and the carpet needs to be replaced in the public bar due to water damage,” Appleby said.

Valiant efforts by the chefs and staff had the pub looking presentable enough to open the bistro, which was undamaged, for dinner at 7pm on the night of the disaster.

The public bar re-opened on Monday and all resumed as normal Wednesday afternoon.

Staff, patrons and owners are all relieved that the danger was so swiftly controlled and are well aware things could have been much worse, especially Appleby.

“We are extremely grateful that all of our wonderful staff and customers are safe, and that this beautiful 120-year-old building, is still standing to continue to serve the community proudly.”

 

 

 

Five For Friday – what’s on in Warrandyte


The weekend’s here and that means it’s Five For Friday time for all that’s happening in Warrandyte ….

1. Local footy is back, junior and senior. The Bloods senior football club is off to Glen Waverley Hawks territory tomorrow while the Bloods juniors are at home and everywhere else on Sunday. Park Orchards takes on Ringwood at Domeney Reserve for their first taste of Divvy 3 action and the Donvale lads are back taking on Nunawading in Division 4 at home tomorrow.

2. Tomorrow’s forecast in Warrandyte? 23 and sunny. A river walk perhaps? Check out this awesome photo (above) by Bill McAuley. Coffee outdoors at one of our fabo coffee shops? Maybe a sausage at Quinton’s IGA?

3. Threezacrowd will be rockin’ up a storm at the Grand Hotel tonight.

4. Blatant plug for a loyal advertiser: TV problems, want to set up your DVD, digital television etc? Tom Kerkhof Television is the answer. Call him on 0408 175 274.

5. The April edition of the Diary is out on Tuesday.

Five For Friday – what’s happening in Warrandyte (March 27)


1. Attack of the Bloods! Footy’s back, well, not the real stuff, but practice matches kicking off all weekend for the Warrandyte Footbal Club (at Panton Hill on Saturday) and the Warrandyte Junior Football Club this Sunday (29th March) against Whitehorse Colts. The schedule is as follows: Main Oval and Small Oval: 08:30am – u12s u8s/u9s, 10am – u13s, u10s, 11:30am – u14s, u11s, 1:30pm – u15s, 3:30pm – Colts. Get on down and support the mighty Bloods!

2. Penny For Your Follies at the Mechanics Institute hall in Yarra Street. Seriously, who needs to go to the city for the theatre? We’ve got the best out here! March 28, April 9-10-11. Get your tickets, it’s a fun-filled show.

3. Blatant plug for an advertiser No.1 – Had a tasting yet at Warrandyte Cellars at the Bridge Arcade Shops? Get there tonight from 5pm-8pm and check out their range.

4. Blatant plug for an advertiser No.2 – Our beautiful Altair Restaurant is having a corker of a Good Friday special:  open for dinner on Friday 3rd April serving a Seafood Tasting Menu of 6 courses for $90p.p. Matching wine additional $46p.p.
7pm arrival for a 7:30pm start. (closed Easter Sunday and Easter Monday).

5. Rock on at the Warrandyte RSL on Sunday from 4pm-8pm. Paulie Bignell and the Thornbury Two, rock n’ blues. BYO food platter welcome.

Five For Friday (festival weekend)


1. Is there anything else to do but rock up to the annual Warrandyte Festival starting tonight and running all weekend? No, indeed not. Let’s party and soak up the wonderful atmosphere! Weather gods are smiling too. Tomorrow: 23 and sunshine. Sunday: 27 and sunshine. Check it out online

2. The Grand Read is back. Tuesday March 24 is the night as a line-up of award-winning poets and writers read their works upstairs at the Grand Hotel Warrandyte from 7.15pm (for a 7.30pm start). Presented by Warrandyte Neighbourhood House.

3. Warrandyte Theatre Company presents Penny For Your Follies, rip-roaring fun at the Warrandyte Mechanics Institute from March 19-20-21-26-27-28 and April 9-10-11. For more visit here

4. Ready for Prep? Wednesday from 7pm-8pm, it’s Anderson’s Creek Primary School’s information evening for Foundation (Preps) 2016. We love our schools, and newcomers we promise you’ll love ACPS.

5. The 31st Rotary Warrandyte Art Show is on all weekend at the Warrandyte Community Church in Yarra Street. Check out some beautiful paintings.

 

Five For Friday (March 13)


1. For goodness sake don’t walk under a ladder and trip over a black cat! It’s Friday the 13th! But Saturday offers a much sweeter proposition with the Strawberry Fair at St Anne’s in Park Orchards, so grab your slap bands and dive into the giant superslide, trackless train, cha cha and more. Oh yeah, and there’ll be strawberry treats galore.

2. Warrandyte RSL is rocking up a storm tonight from 8pm with Rodeo Clowns, while the Grand Hotel will be pumping to the tunes of Peter Grant.

3. Warranwood Art Show is on all weekend at Oak Hall at the Melbourne Rudolph Steiner School in Wonga Rd from 10am-4pm – unmissable. Some fantastic art on display and for sale, visit www.warrandwoodartshow.com.au for more info.

4. BLATANT PLUG for a loyal Diary advertiser – Billanook College is offering student led tour of the campus on Thursday from 10.30am, so RSVP by contacting the registrar on 9724 1179.

5. The flags are up, the program is in the Diary available online and at Quinton’s IGA, and excitement is at bursting point. Yes, save your money, your appetite and your energy for the greatest annual festival on the planet next weekend – the Warrandyte Festival!

Wildlife slaughter: Roo killers could face up to two years in jail

WARRANDYTE car wash workers hope CCTV footage will help police catch the person or group of people who dumped 11 dead kangaroos outside their workplace last month.

Six kangaroos were mysteriously dumped in an industrial bin outside the carwash near Goldfields Plaza in late February.

George Vattakuzhy discovered another five dead kangaroos in the same spot while working just one week later.

The carwash’s manager, Samantha O’Brien, said the business had never encountered such “worrying” behaviour before.

“They dumped the kangaroos in an area where it’s built up – there’s a shopping centre next door and there are always kids and families around. It’s frightening,” Samantha said.

“People live in Warrandyte because they like native wildlife and the environment but even if somebody does view kangaroos as pests it doesn’t give them the right to basically slaughter them.”

Workers say warm weather caused the bin to develop a strong, disgusting odour, which was unsettling for those who were left to remove the kangaroos and clean the bin after the shocking discovery.

“You just don’t go to work expect- ing to see and deal with something so horrible,” Samantha said.

“It’s a slow process but we’re reviewing the footage carefully with the hope that police will be able to identify whoever did this.”

Warrandyte Police senior constable Daniel Logan said the carcasses were so badly decomposed that police couldn’t determine how the kangaroos had been killed.

He said half of the kangaroos found were juveniles.

“This is a really nice area, this sort of activity is very disturbing and we’re very anxious to catch the people or the person doing this,” he said.

“We have to assume that it’s someone around this area, because you wouldn’t really travel long distances in a car with several dead kangaroos.”

Just one day after the five kangaroos were dumped in the industrial bin at the carwash, a council worker discovered the headless body of an adult female kangaroo on Brysons Rd, Wonga Park.

“The council worker who saw the kangaroo said it wasn’t an animal – animals tear and rip,” senior constable Logan said.

“A clean and sharp object had removed the kangaroo’s head.”

These recent incidents come after two kangaroos were shot in the head and neck with arrows in Templestowe in recent times.

Police are investigating whether the deaths are connected, with senior constable Logan saying it’s possible someone chopped off the kangaroo’s head to disguise the fact that it had been injured with an arrow.

Kangaroos are protected under the Wildlife Act 1975.

Anyone found guilty of killing or seriously disabling protected wildlife faces a possible jail sentence of up to two years.

News of the dumped bodies has spread on social media, with Diary readers labelling the incidents as “disgusting” and “horrible”.

Wildlife Victoria CEO Karen Masson was “sickened” to hear the reports about the kangaroos.

“We have an amazing team of volunteers who work extremely hard to assist sick and injured kangaroos reported to our Emergency Response Service every day, so it’s heartbreaking to hear that someone in the community would treat native wildlife in such an horrific manner,” Ms Masson said.

“We sincerely hope the culprits are found and held accountable.”

Police have urged residents to be aware of suspicious activity around Warrandyte and the state parks.

Anyone with information should contact Crime Stoppers on 1300 333 000.

The Warrandyte Diary will keep readers updated through our website.

Warrandyte crash leaves truck in bushes


A truck had to be pulled from the roadside after a two-vehicle collision today in South Warrandyte.

The incident involving a truck and a utility vehicle happened on the corner of Falconer and Warrandyte roads at about 7.30am today.

The driver of the utility vehicle has been issued with an infringement notice for failing to give way.

Warrandyte police said there were no injuries.

Five for Friday (Feb 27)


1. Time to grab hold of those furry balls and have a hit at the Warrandyte Tennis Club for its open day on Sunday at the clubrooms in Taroona Avenue. From 9am – 12 noon with Bar & One Pablo Tapas & Paella truck. FREE fun activities for all ages and experience. FAST4, Hot Shots, Social Play, Cardio Tennis, Targets & more.

2. Also on Sunday is the mighty Run Warrandyte at Warrandyte Reserve, with races beginning at 8am. Races include: Quinton’s SUPA IGA 2.25km; Ruby Tuesday Jewellery 4km; Harding’s Swift Caravan Services 8km; Warran Glen Garden Centre and Cafe 12km; and the Crystal Brook Tourist Park Under 8’s Oval Dash.

3. Grand Hotel Warrandyte tonight. Peter Grant’s rockin’ out, great food, cold beer, great wine, top people. Let’s go!

4. Blatant Plug for an advertiser. Warran Glen Garden Centre & Cafe – grab some plants, have a browse in the gorgeous shop and chow down in the beautiful cafe out the back where there are all sorts of goodies.

5. Diary deadline is today! All advertising and editorial copy closes as we put together another beast of an edition next week.