Taree to host country swim carnival

Taree Swimming Club members celebrate the news the Country Regional Carnival will be held here next January. Pictured are (back from left):Mark Dew, Bevan Smith, Jordan Smith, Keira Bosher, Jade Page, Olivia Dew, Shyanne Gregan and Wendy Bosher. Front: Jasmine Jackson, Brady Cross, Bailey Wilson, Tasmin Gregan, Georgia Bosher, Tobias Gregan and Marcus Smith.TAREE Amateur Swimming Club has been chosen to host the NSW Country Regional Championships next January.

With only three country locations selected across NSW, this will be a popular event.

“Taree was selected along with Lightning Ridge and Queanbeyan,” club president Mick Cross said.

“We expect more than 300 swimmers to come to Taree to compete over the two day event. Being on January 10 and 11, we are hoping that swimmers and their families will not only compete, but also stay a little longer and have a holiday enjoying our beautiful coastline and mountains.”

Taree has one of the most impressive swimming venues on the coast with the outdoor 50m Olympic pool and excellent grandstand.

“We can’t wait to show off these excellent facilities,” Mr Cross continued.

“It has been at least five years since a carnival has been held at this venue.”

He is also enthusiastic about how the swimming club is growing in numbers.

“Not only do we have young swimmers trying club for the first time, but we also have mature swimmers returning to the sport after many years,” Mr Cross explained.

“Some of our most competitive races are kids against their parents.

“Having this level of swimming competition in Taree is a great opportunity for our swimmers to compete at this high level. As you can see we are very excited.”

The club passed on thanks to the Greater Taree City Council.

Mr Cross was very appreciative of the support provided by council to make this event a reality.

“Council recognised that we haven’t had a swimming carnival in Taree for a number of years and contributed significantly to make this event happen.”

Meanwhile the first of the club’s winter events will be conducted on Sunday starting at 2pm.

Further events will be held on August 17 and September 14 in preparation for the start of the new season in October.

Races will be held at the indoor pool at the YMCA Manning Aquatic Centre. A range of strokes will be covered.

Members of the public are invited to join in.

For further information contact Mick Cross on 0409 924 807.

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Unbeaten Manning wins State crown

MANNING didn’t have a goal scored against them in winning the State division two under 13 girl’s hockey championship in Orange.

This means the side goes to division one next year, although some players will move into the under 15 age division..

Manning played two matches on the opening day and two the following to win their pool.

This included a 12-0 win over Crookwell. The side then came up against Orange in the semi-final. Orange eliminated Manning last year.

Manning prevailed on this occasion 2-0 to set up a showdown against New England in the final. The sides played a 0-0 draw in the pool games.

Manning only had one sub for the game as a player came down with a virus overnight and was unable to play

The final was also a hard fought affair, with Manning netting the winning goal 10 minutes from fulltime.

“It was a great effort – all the players went really well and I’m proud of them all,” coach Leanne Yarnold said.

Leanne added that centre defender, Georgia Tran defended strongly and encouraged her team-mates while centre mid fielder Emma Yarnold controlled play with great talking and defence.

Centre striker Lara Watts created a lot of gaps up front.

Younger players Bree Pensini and Kalani Cross both played up front and hassled their defenders. As preparation the side played in the State under 15 championships in Taree last month and won the ‘play to the whistle’ award.

The Manning side was Aleah Clark (goalie), Georgia Tran, Bella- Rose McIntosh, Madeline Betts, Brianna Williams, Emma Yarnold (captain), Jordan Moscat, Paige Webster, Priya Bourke, Makayla Cornall, Lara Watts, Bree Pensini, Kalani Cross.

Leanne Yarnold was coach with Ashley Harry assistant.

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NSW Farmers conference : LLS questioned

Farmers gathered in Sydney raised concerns about the roles and responsibilities of the NSW Government’s Local Land Services agency and the declining levels of associated funding.

NSW Farmers’ President Fiona Simson said: “Farmers have continually raised their concerns about funding cuts to their agency which has prime responsibility for bringing together agricultural production advice, biosecurity, natural resource management and emergency management issues.”

“Local Land Services is responsible for a huge portfolio of issues and ratepayers are keen to see their new agency deliver on all its obligations. However, they recognise the agency is hampered by its broad remit while at the same time facing increasing budgetary pressures,” she said.

At NSW Farmers’ Annual Conference 2014 at Luna Park in Sydney farmers called for Local Land Services not to be involved with regulation and compliance of native vegetation legislation.

Ms Simson said that by being involved with native vegetation enforcement, Local Land Service officers were potentially placed in a situation of conflict of interest.

“This conflict is not only in terms of whether or not they should be acting as a regulator,” she said.

Ms Simson said that farmers instead were calling for Local Land Services to make the eradication of wild pigs a state priority.

“Biosecurity is a major concern with pig numbers increasing and their eradication requiring different methods to that of wild dogs.

“Farmers have said today that they believe Local Land Services is ideally placed to help them in eradicating pest vertebrates which can have devastating impacts on farm productivity,” she concluded.

Meanwhile,A right to farm needs to be enshrined in planning legislation to promote the sustainable development of our food and fibre producing regions, NSW Farmers’ Association members have agreed at their annual conference.

The motion, which originated from the Orange District Council, will inform the NSW Farmers’ planning policy to specifically push for a right to farm.

Chair of the association’s Conservation and Resource Management Committee Mitchell Clapham said he was pleased to see the motion passed on the floor of the association’s annual conference.

“The right to farm is a concept enshrined in other jurisdictions such as most of the provinces of Canada. It is an explicit legal construct which allows farmers to continue farming where appropriate,” he said.

“At present farmers are fighting a losing battle to retain their rights to earn a living from land which borders regional cities and towns in NSW as these centres expand onto agricultural land.

“This is particularly evident as the demand for lifestyle blocks continues as people moving to these blocks usually do not understand that farmers may sometimes need to work unusual hours to take advantage of weather conditions, for example.

“Naturally, any legislation of this kind must also be considered with the need for farmers to adhere to the many environmental regulations such as the Environmental Protection Authority’s chemical spray drift requirements.

“A right to farm would make farming operations immune from specific nuisance complaints arising from those who move to an area close to a farming operation. The reality of farming is that sometimes it’s smelly, sometimes it’s noisy, but farmers’ hard work to produce food and fibre should be supported and not restricted by our planning laws.” Mr Clapham concluded.

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Mobile phone blackspots

Ask farmers and residents in Gollan, Sandy Hollow, some parts of Dripstone and Mumbil, mobile telephone coverage for 86 per cent of farmers in NSW is intermittent or non-existent, a NSW Farmers’ telecommunications survey has found.

Meanwhile, 85 per cent of survey respondents said they had no recent improvements in their mobile coverage at all.

NSW Farmers released the results of its 2014 telecommunications survey at its annual conference in Sydney where Fiona Simson was re-elected president.

The survey of 630 farmers revealed a clear trend and pattern with telecommunication issues in the state and highlighted ongoing issues farmers and rural and regional NSW continued to face.

NSW Farmers’ telecommunications spokesperson Anthony Gibson said that good communications were not a luxury – but a necessity.

“The more isolated you are, the more critical reliable communications are. Running a business without access to mobile technology when you are constantly on the move is both challenging and frustrating,” he said.

“For many people in regional NSW, there is no point in having a new phone with the latest applications. Being able to make and receive phone calls effectively is more important.”

Other sections of the survey revealed the quality and volatility of internet services remained a key challenge with many regional users experiencing periods of limited connection or no connection at all. In terms of mobile data coverage, 87 per cent of respondents had intermittent data receival or none at all.

While price remains the most determining factor in choosing an internet provider, coverage is the second largest determinate for farmers choosing their internet provider. Telstra is the market leader in network coverage across regional Australia leaving farmers in remote rural areas with limited choice.

Mr Gibson said that while these issues were starting to be addressed by the federal government’s review of the National Broadband Network as well as the $100 million commitment to mobile phone black spots, this really was only just the start.

The survey also showed that service delivery was another key factor hampering telecommunications in regional NSW.

“The distance and the time taken to access service centres and repairs, the lack of understanding towards rural telecommunications issues and importantly the inability of many to take their businesselsewhere were the main frustrations.

Some 67 per cent of farmers surveyed had experienced a service outage, 47 per cent had experienced a lack of advice on products suitable for regional areas and more than 40 per cent had experienced equipment failure and poor customer service.

“We have met with Telstra as the main service provider in regional NSW and hope that our ongoing dialogue will help address some of the challenges our farmers and their communities face,” Mr Gibson said.

“In our state, 44,000 farm businesses operate across 72 per cent of the state’s total land area.

“When you are living in rural and remote areas, telecommunications play a vital role in maintaining social, community and business links and NSW Farmers will continue working with the National Farmers Federation to ensure that it remains a high priority for the federal government,” he concluded.

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Five lessons for your first year in business

P-plateVirtually every small business faces a steep learning curve as a newbie.

Trial and error is how infants build skills and strength. So too do corporate start-ups.

We ask five bosses who survived their early days of enterprise to share the biggest lesson they learnt when their business was a newborn.

Eve John, co-founder of Bent Over Silicone Nozzles, has learnt that really listening builds business

The plumbing product – with the memorable name – was invented when Eve’s husband Alex, a plumber, broke his back and “had five months staring at the ceiling”.

Patent secured, it launched in 2012 and has already got retail interest in the UK and nationally.

Eve admits she knew nothing about plumbing two years ago, but it proved invaluable as she had to listen doubly hard to trade customers.

“The biggest lesson was listening to the words our customers were using when they were speaking to us,” she says.

“Rather than selling them a plumbing tool ‘that saved them time and money’ we changed our initial copywriting, which was using all this technical language, and sold them a plumbing tool that ‘allowed them to stop having to spend hours on their knees as they wanted to go home without pain and play with their kids’, because that was what they were telling us they wanted.”

Denise Shrivell, founder of MediaScope, has learnt the importance of pacing yourself

Shrivell launched her B2B specialising in media and advertising in 2009 with “plenty of passion” and adrenaline pumping.

The Sydney sole trader says: “I had had this concept for a business for years and all these ideas in my mind, you feel this great urgency to tick all the boxes on your list, it is so exciting in those first months as a new entrepreneur.”

But Shrivell now knows small business “is a marathon not a sprint” if you want to trade long-term. You cannot afford to burn out.

“As a sole trader the business is you so if you wear out physically, financially, emotionally, spiritually, early on you will not have a business and I learnt the hard way that you must pace yourself to give the adrenalin rush time to settle down.”

Madeleine Wilkie, founder of Urban Rec, has learnt not to listen to everyone’s advice

Wilkie’s non-competitive sports and social club business – almost 1000 members-strong – almost didn’t get off the ground.

She had seen the unique club in action while living in Vancouver and her gut feeling told her it should also work in Sydney, given its outdoorsy and big city lifestyle.

She returned home to Australia and in 2011 launched Urban Rec.

Pre-launch, she bounced her idea off “a friend of a friend” who is also “a financial advisor type person” as she thought it would be smart to get his take on her venture.

“He was well meaning but basically said ‘that sounds fantastic but that’s never going to work in Sydney; I would never play sport and then go to the pub’.

“His reaction definitely surprised me as I was so convinced this was a great match for Sydney so I pushed on … and now that person is one of my customers!”

Ben Neumann, managing director of Liquid Infusion, has learnt mega-riches don’t come overnight

Nine years ago, aged 22, Neumann launched his mobile cocktail bar on a shoestring budget from his parents’ garage in Melbourne.

Today it caters more than 30 private and corporate events weekly across Australia.

It reached a seven-figure annual turnover figure “about five years ago”, which is no mean feat.

He laughs recalling his initial ambition was “instant success” within months.

“We started off with three [events] a week so I thought this meant I’d be a millionaire in a year but of course I soon discovered my timeframe was out of step with the reality of the impact of seasonal fluctuations etc, so the biggest thing I learnt was you can’t always control the time it takes to fulfil your initial aspirations.

“Be patient and back your winning horse even if it may take 5-10 years to win the race.”

Jamie Lee, founder of Kids at Switch, has learnt real success is measured by how much you can help others

Lee started her early childhood education business in 2012 with three students in term one: “I loved every minute of it.”

Today the Sydney-based venture has hundreds of primary-school-aged children in its alumni.

“I’ve learnt so much since starting and realised that success is not about what you gain in life or accomplish for yourself: it’s about what you can do for others.

“I laugh every time the kids refer to me a ‘superhero’ and remind them that they are the superheroes and that helping them realise their unique talents is a joy.”

What’s the most important lesson you learnt in your first year in business? Share your comment below.

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