Monday, June 30, 2014

Not one laugh to be had!!!

Here is a link to the submission I have written to the Crown Land's review The White Paper.
I have been asked, by two Trustees not to submit this document. I have also had my objectivity and integrity questioned as a result of opinions/ statements made in this document.
I will be submitting it.
The deadline is 5.30 Monday 30th June (today)
You can voice your opposition to anything in this document (or your support) via

I promise a more upbeat post next time!

Submission to The White Paper

Saturday, June 14, 2014





Rare sighting of the enraged Brain, found on the Common, this week.

Hey you! What’s this I hear about Crown Lands wanting to turn me into a Crown Reserve? 

"The White Paper"? The aim is to simplify the management of Crown Lands. They want to remove outdated legislation.

Outdated??? I’m nearly a 140 years young!!!!!

Crown Lands reckon you’re historically redundant. 


How dare they!!!! I’m the evocative, and educational, backdrop to a remote-area Historic Site. I'm meant to have History!! 
Who’s going to look after me??

Friday, May 16, 2014



Don't be fooled by the size of this man's hammer!

Model of Blitz donated by member of public



On Saturday, 10th May 2014, the inside of Northey’s store was JUMPING. The volume was up and it was ear-splitting.  
Firstly the percussive snap of cleaning rags and the atomised whoosh of associated solvents. Then, over this cacophony of busy-bee housekeeping, the clamour of Happy Campers, as they raucously enquired as to the whereabouts of LARGE gold nuggets.

Underneath this industrious hum, suddenly could be heard,  the unmistakable deep, throaty growl of a, digitally-unenhanced, motor attempting to put all of its combustible processes, to the goodly aim, of turning over a large motor! 



Grabbing my Camera, then, subtly and elegantly, clearing the shop  of customers (GET THE #$*&^%@ OUT OF HERE!!!!!) and slapping a “BACK IN 10 MINUTES” sign on the door (Ha! Don’t tell Jim and Gaye)! 

I ran up the Hill, to the Old Fire Shed,  to see what was going on! 


Note maniac in Driver's Seat. Note too, skewed angle of the windshield wiper. Dead-give away to unhinged state of driver! Note also Robert Anderson in jeans.

The restoration of the Hill End Blitz has a long and dramatic history. Its progress has bought tears to many an eye. I know, because I have skived off work (don’t tell Gaye) to catch it on film.
I found Robert Anderson, not so long ago, sobbing into to a pile of oil-stained rags after he had installed the headlights. “The Blitz has eyes!” he managed to splutter through gut wrenching sobs. 

Hill End's answer to Dr Fred Hollows...? A composed Robert Anderson after restoring sight to the Blitz.
Of course there are many ghosts who attend this project. They extend, back in time, to a very different Hill End. Many of them have attained legendary status, and the vehicle’s restoration is a labour of love in that it breathes life back into those now gone.
The analogy between the Restoration and the creation of a Human-being is no accident.
The Heart; the Engine
The Belly; the water tank
The Nervous System: the Electrics
The kidneys: The water pump
I was there to witness the testing of the clutch and the brake. The mechanisms that control the direction and speed of motion. 
The Hormone System as it were. 

Motor running, Trevor Sherry, prepares to engage the clutch for the first time.
Note the delicacy of the hand as it prepares to gently execute this manoeuvre.
This is a man with complete trust in his gear-box

If the clutch and brake are the Hormone System of the Vehicle, then The Blitz could be said to be  having its second adolescence.  

AND like teenagers everywhere, it wasn't about  to behave. 

Note change of hand position and tightness in facial expression.
Here is a man slightly suspicious of his gear-box!

Note two hands and facial congestion.
Here is a man who has discovered the true cheating nature of his gear-box and is about to lose his rag! 


Note broken gear-stick!
Trevor and Digger caught red handed

His defence? 

Meanwhile the Blitz gets a sense of Identity TENDER NO 1.

Warwick Taylor and Digger drill and rivet the name plate into place.
Watch the Duco guys!
These blokes were having so much fun. 
It was a real Mens' Shed (thanks guys for allowing my forays).
There had been talk of the old Fire Shed being adapted to such a degree there would be no room for the completed Blitz!
This possibility had, figuratively, gutted some members in the Community. People who had sustained morale through very difficult times were distraught at the idea of this displacement.   

However, on this  Saturday, Lew Bezzina, Historic Heritage Project Coordinator, with NPWS, swung by the Fire Shed to tell the restoration team that, changes had been made that now allowed the tanker to retain a room in its Spiritual Home.

The energy in the shed was positively buoyant. Such is the restorative power of this long-term project.

There is a longer story to be told. This, for you, is just a taste. 

A special mention to absent friends… Dave Pender and, a much loved ghost Welsh Phil.

All words and images by Karin Mainwaring.

Monday, May 05, 2014


After a year's silence 


regains its voice! 

On the 29th April 2014, after a tip-off from an observant tourist, The Tambaroora Times,  went down to investigate a report of raw sewerage, leaking into a creek, adjacent to a bridge on the Bald-Hill Mine Walk. 

My informant, told me he worked for a municipal water company. In his opinion, the leak had been active for a sometime. How could this be? Hill End had just enjoyed its busiest season. School-holidays, Easter and Anzac Day had all happened together. The sun had shone. No rain. The village was crawling with people. How could someone not have noticed until now?


Approach to bridge with pipework



But  then,  a whiff of something.  And, given the dry period Hill End had experienced, the luxuriant growth, snaking down the creek, began to look suspicious too. 

Looking down the creek toward The Village Camp ground and Bald Hill Mine.


The pipework looked fine, but it was obscured by thick, long grass. A near-by rock was used to push the grass to one side. 



The man had mentioned some algal growth. What did that mean? 
A few slimy fingers of vibrant green swirling in a small pool of cloudy water. Something creepy but contained?
What I found was a slow-moving stream of contaminated sludge, seeping, underneath a lush channel of vegetation, along the creek.

Not easy to see at first. But, stepping onto it, one's feet sunk into black-water.
 Pools of sludge became apparent.
Contaminated water along a back channel.

The seepage flowed down a rock channel, filling three sizeable rock pools. 
In rain, it would be a waterfall. Under the present circumstances it was a sludge-seep. 

But a very effective one.

Sludge seeps, along the water-course, down a tree root, into the first open pool of contaminated water below.
The second, and largest, pool of contaminated open water. 

The third pool, downstream of the big pool, on the left of the green which snakes on and beyond  the Bald Hill Mine.  

The creek narrowed after that, turned back on itself, and continued down toward the Bald Hill Mine (and beyond). The lushness of the vegetation, snaking through an otherwise arid landscape showed how far the contamination had travelled.


The NPWS manages (and indeed installed, many years ago)  the water and sewerage in Hill End. I  tracked down Lew Bezzina (Historic heritage Coordinator) in Bathurst.  Lew immediately logged the incident with the Environmental Protection Agency. 

A clean-up operation began that night and  went on through most of the night. 



The old PVC pipe has been replaced with a more robust (and perhaps more standard)  fitting. 

The entire area has been pumped, scoured and flushed. Disinfectant was used around the bridge area to ensure decontamination.  Contaminated soil has also been removed and relocated to the Settling Ponds. 

The Sump-pump worked overtime. The contaminated liquid was pumped to the Settling Ponds. A liquid waste contractor was also on site, as back-up, to transfer waste if required. 

Staff worked through the night to ensure a thorough clean-up. 

The pumped out largest pool.
Lew Bezzina from NPWS and Matthew Corradin from the Environmental Protection Agency have both been forthcoming in my dealings with them.

The EPA (and NPWS) say their first priority was a thorough clean-up down to 60 metres.  
With the huge amount of work that has been done (and the the vicinity of 45mm as of 5th May 2014) this could be adjudged to have  been achieved.  

The EPA arrived on site the next morning and water samples were taken. 
(NPWS may also have taken their own samples prior to this)

An investigation now begins.. 



Both Departments, NPWS, and the EPA, are bound by legislative requirements.  It must be said, however, that these requirements, may and do, differ from those laid down by the Department of Water.  

For example, it appears  that neither NPWS or the EPA require inspection logs of the sewerage lines to be kept. 
There is also the question of qualifications. Matthew Corradin, when asked as to whether NPWS staff were certified said he "assumed" so.
This question will, of course, be asked and answered in the investigation.  

Transparency is one of the  basic  tenets of governance. 
Both Lew and Matthew Corradin have been open and forthcoming. Both have given me information as to how I can gain information about the outcomes of the investigation.  

According to NPWS the area was checked a month ago when inspections were made on the bridge(s) in regards to Capital Works. 

According to Matthew Corradin from the EPA "These things do happen".  And they do. I did ask Matthew Corradin how the pipe might have been broken..


NPWS have recently tendered for an independent review of the water and sewerage system. 

The Tambaroora Times hopes to provide updates as to how the follow-up is proceeding. There are a number of questions to be asked and answered.

Credit  to Parks on the clean-up. It was long dirty job completed in heavy rain.  

A follow-up post will ensue.



Disclaimer... The Editor of The Tambaroora Times worked as a field-officer for NPWS. 
She is a certified Water and Sewerage Operator. It's a nerdy qualification for a playwright.
But there it is.

Coming soon. 

NPWS gives go ahead for Hill End Arts' Council's 

Disability Access work, 

at the Catholic Church, 

to go ahead.


Images and words by Karin Mainwaring. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Today Tambaroora…! Tomorrow Tweet-hearts?? The WORLD!!!

Swelling the ranks of the Revelation Generation

Bathurst Regional Art Gallery recently sent invitations for expressions of interest in their new Online Marketing for Artists’ Course. 

The brains and bustle behind this course is, Education and Public Programs Officer, Emma Hill. Emma is a qualified Teacher and an Artist. She believes “On-line Marketing for Artists” (OM4A is her snazzy acronym) to be, an especially, powerful tool for regional Artists. We’re on the rise apparently.

Emma is a powerhouse. She has designed this course and delivers it with aplomb. She leaps and springs around, not so much jumping out of her skin, but jumping around within it. She is a sculptor and radiates strength. She wore skin-tight red jeans topped with a tight black-silver-striped spangly number! Emma looks like a circus acrobat or a cat-burglar. She also has the best right eye-brow I’ve seen in 30 years! 

Emma cheerfully invites you to push your scepticism and fears aside, and then floods you with information. I suspect she enjoyed letting us have it. Her course notes are a wonderful resource. She also gifts us a downloadable-show-bag of very useful tools. But it’s Emma who is the Ring Master driving us through it.

The first session was crammed with options, marketing, platforms, tools, etiquette, short-cuts and dangers. To name a few. This was Emma’s plan. Push us through, give us the tools, and then hit us with the homework. Emma warns us she will accept no excuses for non-completed assignments! Next session we will collate all of our “homework” and launch a platform.

The second week and the set-up is different. Emma asks us to share our individual experiences and allows those, not in the hot-seat, to disappear behind their screens and play.

Emma listens to us carefully and answers our questions. For the most part, she’s a solo listener.  The rest of are deeply submerged in our on-line worlds. We only surface when a word from above, like a pelagic morsel, tempts us to rise. We stay, only as long as needed, before diving back down, into the depths, with our useful snippets. 

This is us finding our way into our on-line personae. 

At one stage, after nearly 3 hours of patient listening, Emma apologises for interrupting!!!! Emma has manners!  The rest of us shrieked, groaned and carried on cross conversations. There were even ejaculations of triumph!!  “I’ve got my first like!!!!!!!”. Emma assures us that even an old hand, like herself, still gets excited. 

"Likes" can create thorny issues.

“Likes” are valuable currency. They generate esteem as well as business.  Once you reach 30 you gain insight! You need not spend years to gain enlightenment!

There are ethical questions of course. Does one “Like” a fellow artist’s site if one doesn't like their work?  Emma seems to think that, especially in the early stages, we’re all there to help each other. Like  some mad vicarious Vivisectionist, Emma encourages us to create a network, and experiment on each other.

To do this, you have to share.

This is where Emma can’t help. Sharing requires judgement. As artists, how discriminating we are is critical to our work, and our reputation. Emma encourages us to look at what’s out there, aim high and get it together!

Studio 15.
Ruth Stone @Studio15 is a star. She has launched a Facebook business page during the week! Ruth has done a lot of work. The completion of her studio in Millthorpe, after an extended period of no studio, is a wonderful launch platform.

Ruth  has thought about the emotional issues involved in asking to be liked. It puts one in a vulnerable situation. Emma makes a clear distinction between personal and business.  She claims she never mixes but, vixen that she is, also has mischievously told me, earlier, that she doesn’t play hard to get!

Zenio Lapka wows us all by pulling out a second computer and playing away at the two of them like Phantom of the Opera playing on his organ. By the time we get around to this digital maestro, we’ve been at it for close to two hours. People are falling by the wayside! Zenio has put the two hours to good use. His launch has huge wow factor. Zenio is a Zenious. I felt positively primitive.   

Emma commits her only blasphemy in the course when she asserts the image’s
absolute superiority over the word. Can there be any surer way to lose control of your “image”, than to begin commenting, madly, after three martinis??  Emma agrees it’s wise to stay away from the keyboard when shickered!

I’m not a visual artist. I’m a writer in search of a joke. No joke then, when it's me who provides a text-book example of the word's power. Facebook is a master of connectivity. You just need the name. That's your key to the visual portal. “What’s your page called??” people ask, their fingers busy in a flurry of mutual liking.  

The Tambaroora Times” I answer. 

Silence.  Ruth le Cheminant looks at me with disbelief! I realise I’ve made a terrible mistake. Nobody has ever heard of Tambaroora! Even worse... no one knows how to spell it. Ruth's eyes glaze over when I try to. She's committed though. She leaps up, grabs pen and paper and scribbles it down. 

"The Tambaroora Tablets" by my husband, Michael Ramsden,
provided inspiration for my bad-comedy-tabloid inspired blog
The Tambaroora Times. 

I always thought living in a ghost-town gave me cachet. Wrong. The unspellable name is the kiss of death. Louise @ Bant Street Pottery tells us  she always teaches children to break down a difficult, or unknown, word and articulate it in it’s component parts. This is great  advice.

"The-Tam-ba-roor-a-Times" I enunciate. But no-one's listening. They've all moved on.  Time is precious.  My motto “Today? Tambaroora! Tomorrow? The World!!!! Doesn’t seem so convincing. My mad mwhah, hah, hah, hah laughter trails off. "It’s facebook” Ruth tells me. “You don’t always receive your likes”. Right. Even though Natasha Daniloff  likes me I still feel like the smelly kid in the class.

Hill End certainly looks posh in this portrait by Genevieve Carroll
Ruth Stone rescues me from despair when I explain that Tambaroora is due North of Hill End. Oh Hill End!!!” she says. Clearly we are now talking about a horse of a different colour. “Hill End’s posh!” 
I may have to lower my standards and admit Tambaroora’s, twisted-sister-connection to her more famous Siamese-twin; HILL END. Ethical dilemmas are everywhere. 

Unfortunate things can happen on the Internet. Emma speaks about some of these dangers. I hear the word “Stalker” at one point. The Internet is certainly a powerful tool to uncover the details of a life and it pays to keep current with the ever evolving world of malware and how to protect against it. The more famous you become, the harder it is to hide if someone takes it into their head to get to know you. I don’t have to worry about that out here. No-one’s ever heard of Tambaroora. Nor looks like they want to! 

I end the day, woefully unenlightened, with only one like. Well Two. One's my own.  

I wanted there to be a third lesson so I could take along an apple and wiggle my way into the position of teacher’s pet.

Then I’d realised that’s exactly what I’d been doing!

Emma redefines taking an Apple for the Teacher.

Thanks Emma and BRAG and all other who helped this project come to fruition. My apologies to my colleagues who, due to space restrictions, went unmentioned. They have big stories to tell. 

They are 
Nicola Mason
Harrie Fasher
Jennifer Gabbay
Emily Laszuck
Adrian Symes

"The Tambaroora Tablets" image is used here with thanks to Mark and Angela-Scmitt-Glaser of  GROUP.IE Gesellschaft für Identity Engineering mbH.
For the beautiful vintage images I thank Vintage Printable at Swivelchair Media – Beta
The opening image is Emma's and BRAG'S. Many thanks for permission to reproduce. 
Many thanks to Ruth Stone, Zenio Lapka and Genevieve Carroll for permission to reproduce their images. 
The image of the rock that forms the banner image of  The Tambaroora Times was taken by my husband, Michael Ramsden. His on-line presence, thanks to this course, is currently in-development. 

Muses and "like-magnets" Archy and Wynny @studio15. 
These  stars topped Ruth Stone's "like-chart".
Note to self.... 
Get to poultry shop. 

Thursday, April 11, 2013


Local Lad and Lass, Brad Warry and Shiralee Seaman are recreating a journey from Hill End's heyday.


This baby is from Coffin Bay South Australia. Wouldn't she go down a treat??
This is a Pacific Oyster but Pure Coffin Bay Oysters also breed, the Angasi. This native oyster was eaten to near-extinction on the Gold-fields. Maybe even by Brad's ancestors.
It is now making a comeback!
Then, of course, the unopened oysters were packed into hessian bags and hauled up the Bridle Track by horse or bullock. 

This team is hauling half a house!!!! They'd get a few sacks of Oysters up the old Bridle Track in no time at all!
Bullock team transportring part of a house in the Gympie District, 1928
John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland Neg. 34800

But Brad and Shiralee are modern folk and this is their steed of choice. 

Note refrigeration unit!

Brad is a trained chef with extensive experience in large hotel kitchens. He has worked as Head Chef and supports this kitchen experience with considerable bar management expertise. A stint as a Licensee rounds off his CV.

It's impossible to rise, and operate, at this level of responsibility without knowledge of food handling and hygiene becoming ingrained. Very important with seafood. 

Shiralee is busy doing a certificate 2 in Business studies. She is grappling with the intricacies of spread-sheets, projections, and book-keeping as well as becoming acquainted with the complex joys of BAS and GST. 

The plan is simple. Drive to Sydney on Friday and collect fresh Oysters and prawns. Sell aforementioned Oysters and prawns on Saturday morning on The Avenue! 


Winter is the best time for this esteemed mollusc. How good would the plump, creamy taste of a freshly shucked oyster be? 

The local lemon trees are coming on...!

Betty's lemons are legendary. What a combination! 
God! Imagine letting Betty loose in an Oyster Bar!
She'd cut a rug!

This is worth travelling for!

10 am Saturday!
The Veggie Shack@The Avenue.
Shiralee has created a schedule. For all details, including placing orders, please contact her at 
Any other haulage work?
Ring Brad of Warry's Transport & Haulage  0421 258156

This is a budding operation. It will evolve as Brad and Shiralee find their way around the markets and refine their operation. 

It's going to be a delicious part of town. Let's keep it beautiful.

The Editor would like to thank Linda Hank from Pure Coffin Bay Oysters for permission to use the photograph of one of their oysters. The photo in question, was taken by John White photos. Thanks John.
The Editor would also like to thank Margaret Warren from the Library of Queensland for help with copyright on the Bullock Team photo. 
All other photos and text KMR