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   Feb 13

Jess Fishlock could be back in hunt for threepeat with Melbourne City

Melbourne City’s history making captain-coach Jess Fishlock could yet return to try to lead the team to a third consecutive W-League title next season, although no new deal has yet been confirmed.
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“It’s not a done deal right now, but probably,” she says when asked if she will be returning. “Coming back here next season is an option, for sure.

“We will sit down and see what it looks like. I have to weigh up right now what’s best for me, the whys and whats of coming back here. There’s an element of me that likes a new challenge in a different way and different environment.

“However, I still believe that from my coaching and developing future this club is absolutely where I want to be.

“The City Football Group, Melbourne, Manchester, New York, but right now, out of the whole CFG, Melbourne is absolutely where I want to be, it’s the right fit for me in terms of my coaching experience,” the 30-year-old says.

On Sunday night Fishlock was holding aloft the W-League trophy after leading her team to an historis back-to-back championship in a 2-0 win over Perth Glory

On Wednesday she will be flying out to Europe to link up with her international team, Wales, to be a key part of the squad for the Cyprus Cup, an international tournament that kicks off on March 1.

“After that I go to Seattle for our pre-season before the season proper starts in the NWSL (National Womens Soccer League) in America.

“My main season is in Seattle, after that I have to figure out what is best for me. It’s not solely about football. It’s about the game, life and the future.

“I am now 30 … it’s not young in the footballing world. I think I could stay playing until I was 35 if I really wanted but I want to transition to coaching, but in the right way. I don’t want to cut corners. It’s not how I believe it should be done.

“I have to learn and develop and be mentored and just really put the work in to be the coach that I want to be, because that’s what I did to be the player I wanted to be. There are no short cuts.”

Fishlock has been a big advocate for women’s sport throughout her career, and the Cardiff-born soccer star believes that the huge start made by the AFL Women’s competition is good for all women’s sport, not just footy.

Nor, she says, does it represent a big threat to soccer, as some are claiming, because football has something n Rules doesn’t have – the chance to play for your country and follow your dream around the world.

“The pull of that, of being able to play what you love worldwide for me is a huge thing. But AFL Women’s is really good for women’s sport and if you are a girl growing up here and you have all these options to be a successful sportsperson then I think it’s brilliant what they have done.

“From a soccer perspective if you want to play soccer you want to play it. If you love it you will play it … If you are an athlete you are an athlete, but it’s the love of the game – it’s the whole reason why the W-League even exists.

“In season one there wasn’t much money, exposure, media or anything, but the girls did it anyway. That’s what it is, the love of the game.

“I do think in a good way the AFL might push the W-league and the FFA to make a few changes to ensure that the growth of the league is the No.1 priority and we don’t rest on what we have managed to achieve to this point.”

   Jan 14

Matildas’ newbie Galabadaarachchi has bright future if she works hard

Her name – Jacynta Galabadaarachchi – might be too long for her shirt and hard to pronounce, but that will be the challenge for fans and commentators of women’s soccer after the 15-year-old Melbourne City midfielder was called into the Matildas’ camp in Canberra this week.

The teenager, who had to overturn a ruling preventing her from playing in a boys’ team, has made an impact with the W-League title-winners this season and could become the next big thing – if she keeps her head down, works hard and makes the expected development.

Matildas boss Alan Stajcic saw enough this season to give her a taste of what it’s like to be involved with the national team.

City captain and coach Jess Fishlock agrees the sky could be the limit if Galabadaarachchi works hard.

“We just call her Jacynta although she has her full name on her shirt,” Fishlock said.

“She’s a good little player. She has huge potential to be a good player if she develops in the right way.

“There are a lot of positives to her game, but there are a lot of things she needs to learn and understand to make her attributes really hurt teams.

“She’s a good dribbler, but at the moment she struggles to figure out when to dribble, when not to dribble, when to pass, when to move and what to do in defending situations. She just wants to play and get on with it, in a freestyle manner, with no structure to it,”

Had City been coasting to the W-League finals, as they did last year, then the youngster might have had more game time. But few risks could be taken this season, Fishlock said.

“Because of the situation we were in and it was a fight to the very end, when you have someone who is such a good player but doesn’t quite understand it as of yet, it can be quite detrimental  to what you want to achieve.

“It was just her inexperience that kept her out really, I am very happy for her to be called up to the national team camp. It’s always an honour.”

   Jan 14

James Pattinson forced to pull out of Prime Minister’s XI due to foot infection

James Pattinson is on the comeback trail from injury and is one of the best bowlers in . Photo Jay Cronan Photo: Jay CronanThe James Pattinson injury curse has struck again.

Luckless n fast-bowler Pattinson has taken another injury hit and been forced to withdraw from the Prime Minister’s XI clash against Sri Lanka at Manuka Oval.

In a blow to one of the fixture’s marquee men, Pattinson has an infection in his left foot and will be replaced by NSW bowler Harry Conway.

Pattinson joins former n one-day international captain George Bailey on the high-profile withdrawal list for a match that doubles as Adam Voges’ farewell to international cricket.

It’s a fresh injury blow for Pattinson, who has been taking a long and slow road back to the top level as back, shin and hamstring injuries delayed his career.

The Victorian quick took 5-27 on debut for in 2011, claiming 70 scalps in 17 matches. But injuries have forced him to miss 40 Tests and he’s taken another hit in the PM’s XI match.

Pattinson concedes he has to prove himself again, but has put his faith in the selection process.

“I wanted to get a fair bit of first class cricket in before I play any Test cricket again,” Pattinson said.

“Obviously [I want to] try and put on some performances for the selectors to pick me. It’s about all the process.

“It’s been frustrating, but hopefully now I can just keep getting more cricket, and keep playing, getting that continuity and consistency into my game which I’ve obviously lacked over the last two or three years.

“Hopefully that can happen and take it game by game, and hopefully play a few more games.”

Pattinson was in Canberra on Tuesday and will watch the reformatted PM’s XI, which will be played as a Twenty20 match for the first time.

An ACT XI will play against Papua New Guinea in a curtain-raiser and Cricket ACT general manager of high performance Aiden Blizzard wants Canberra players to use it as a career launching pad.

“We’re really excited. I think it’s a great opportunity for the boys to get some experience against an international team, but also to kick off what an event it will be here at Manuka Oval for the PM’s XI,” Blizzard said.

“[Twenty20] cricket is going gangbusters at the moment, particularly the BBL so it’s a really good opportunity. Number one for our boys to get some experience, but number two to put their hand up and really work hard to get a BBL opportunity.”

Despite a long list of n players being unavailable for the PM’s XI match and three withdrawals, there is no Canberra player in the marquee match.

“Ideally we would have a Canberra guy in the XI, however we’re really happy with Matt Gilkes getting the opportunity to be 12th man,” Blizzard said.

“In an ideal world, yes [we’d like one in PM’s XI], but we’re really proud of being able to host this time and time again, and to be able to give players exposure to international teams and to push their case for the next level.”

   Jan 14

Sweep or dance: Renshaw faces dilemma in India

The n Test side is shaping up for the toughest test in the modern game, playing India in India.

The powerhouse from the sub-continent made short work of England late last year and have piled on the runs against Bangladesh.

Queenslanders Matt Renshaw and Usman Khawaja will be tasked with batting for long periods and scoring runs.

Renshaw starred for in his debut series, proving to be a savvy thinker of the game. But playing in India is a different beast.

In the lead-up to the tour, the Brisbane product has worked on National Centre of Excellence pitches that mimic the sharp turning spin of the sub-continent. He’s also picked the brains of England spinner Monty Panesar, showing a maturity we’re coming to expect from the 20-year-old.

Pundits have suggested his tactics should mimic Matthew Hayden’s method of playing across the line.

Hayden’s method has not been replicated by many n batsmen over the past 10 years as the sweep shot has slowly gone out of vogue. The Michael Clarke approach of batsmen using their feet and running down the wicket seems to be the “proper” way to play spin in modern cricket.

But is the sweep the best option for Renshaw? The tall left hander Renshaw has extraordinary reach with the bat, allowing him to easily hit balls off a good length. But is it the right method to lump a hyper aggressive unfamiliar tactic on one of ‘s newest players?

In a throwback to his country of birth, Renshaw should adopt the patient approach of England’s Alastair Cook.

This method of batting long periods of time with a low strike rate would of course trigger criticism from past players who feel the need to “take the game on”.

But Renshaw has proven he has a capacity to bat long periods of time and soak up balls. Why is there a call for him to go away from this game plan to start attacking bowlers in some of the most difficult conditions in the world? Why would you want the 20-year-old to move away from a plan that has brought him to the highest level of the game in such a short space of time?

In his first trip to India, surely it would make sense to see more Cook than Hayden in Renshaw’s style.

Khawaja has had a torrid relationship with the sub-continent, both on and off the pitch. ‘s number three has toured three times with an average less than 20. Off the field he was involved in the infamous “homeworkgate” situation under former coach Mickey Arthur, and most recently in 2016 when the team toured Sri Lanka he lashed out at selectors saying himself and Joe Burns were being made scapegoats after being dropped.

With the bat in hand, Khawaja has struggled against the moving ball. His performance over the summer scoring over 500 runs against South Africa and Pakistan might alleviate some of this concern but there is some belief he will struggle against a spinning, reverse-swinging ball.

Khawaja is described as a traditional player, but in this upcoming series success might be just around the corner if he is a little more “unconventional”. Due to the spinning nature of the pitches and the high caliber of the indian spinners, Khawaja will be surrounded by close in fielders around the bat.

These close catchers provide a worry for a traditional style players, who often play spin with bat and pad close together. Players like AB De Villiers and Kevin Pietersen has been successful in India against the spinning ball. Albeit in two different styles.

Pietersen’s aggression towards the spinners forced the Indians to remove catchers from around the bat in a bid to stop runs. Pietersen could then toy with the field without worrying about knicking a ball onto his pad.

De Villers had the same intent, a aggression of taking balls pitched outside off stump and hitting them through the legside. Plans like this, that might ruffle a few feathers of commentators, could be the answer for Khawaja’s success in  the subcontinent.

For Khawaja to get past the most difficult part of his innings, the start, he might need to change his plans and move away from the traditional methods.

India is a vastly different, alien place for an n cricketer. This is confirmed by performances over the past 10 years, India needs to be a place for players to try different things, a place for an individual to figure out what works for them – whether this is throwing the batting handbook out the window or sticking to it rigidly. It is going to be a tough test for these Queenslanders, but it sure will be exciting to see what they come up with.

   Jan 14

Steel Horse limousine service founder Peter de Mey has had a mixed career but found his professional calling

Polished performer: Peter de Mey with one of his luxury Steel Horse vehicles. What was your first job?

I had always been keen on drawing and designing things, so it was a natural progression for me to work in the graphic design/advertising area.

I remember at high school drawing caricatures of mates and teachers as ducks. They became so popular I had requests from other teachers. I had to tread a fine line there I can tell you.

What appealed to you about the sector, which obviously changed radically with computerisation?

Back in the Eighties, computer graphics came to with high resolution and great colour so I just had to be in on it.

I was the first Aussie to be trained in the new technology. Of course, today a simple desktop computer can doimmeasurably more than those computers which occupied a whole room and looked like a row of wardrobes

Why did you move into corporate hospitality and what was your role?

I needed the flexibility of time to spare for the project of first building then running the country retreat on the land I had bought up in Lambs Valley. I worked in a number of skyscraper offices in Sydney for major law firms, insurance companies and building and development companies which had their own commercial kitchens and client entertaining facilities. There I gained the experience of working with a lot of very high profile and influential business people.

When you have to be in the room where deals worth many millions of dollars are being brokered, you quickly learn when to be invisible and when to be friendly and personable.

It was great customer service experience.

What led you to build a luxury B&B in the Upper Hunter?

At the time it was my goal to set up and run a high quality country retreat. It was a lifestyle choice I guess.I found a 100-acre property in Lambs Valley in the northern Hunter and built an architect designed, three pavilion building with log fires, spa bathsand of course king-size beds and commanding spectacular valley views. I opened for business at the beginning of 200 to both local and overseas guests

What did you learn from running a B&B before selling it in 2006?

First and most importantly, by setting a goal and breaking it down into manageable pieces with a realistic time-frame, you can achieve anything you want.

Build a friendly rapport with customers and enjoy the satisfaction of providing them with a wonderful experience which they remember afterwards.

What led to you founding your limousine service in 2015?

When I arrived in Newcastle 10 years ago, I had a painful back injury which made most work options, once I recovered, out of the question. Driving a luxury car seemed fairly low impact so that’s how I got into the hire car industry. After a few years, I thought I should branch out on my own offering my own brand of customer service with a high-end luxury vehicle.

What is your point of difference in your competitive market?

Friendly, professional and attentive customer service coupled with a prestige limousine. Then, build in options and packages that the competition can’t or don’t want to provide.

My regular customers have become like friends to me.

What are the biggest challenges to your business at present?

Developing business and regular work in very uncertain financial times and of course the ever increasing cost of fuel.

What do you think the Hunter tourism industry needs to do to be more attractive to visitors from here and abroad?

Customer service is key to everything. For instance the wineries I take my customers to are the ones which provide a superior customer experience. Wines for the most part are good to excellent, so the experience of going there has to be special

Peter De Mey

You’ve had some famous clientele in your car. What have been the most interesting VIP journeys you have made?

Well, the prime minister’s car broke down on the RAAF runway while we were alongside the prime minister’s jet, so I stepped in to drive Mr Rudd on the first day of his second term as PM.

Also Peter Garrett (then Education Minister) sang for me as I drove him into Sydney.

What do you enjoy most about your current role?

Oh gee … lots of things. Not being in an office 9 to 5. Meeting lots of really interesting people. Everyone has a great story to tell.

Driving through the country at dawn … beautiful!

If you had your druthers, where would you live and work?

Oh that’s a hard one. I kinda like where I am at the moment.

If money wasn’t a consideration I would love to be living somewhere near the sea with plenty of nature around me for growing things and being able to share it with great people.

   Jan 14

Cheers to beer revolution

It seems ns simply cannot satisfy their craving for craft beer, a growing number making it their drink of choice to wet their whistle, and microbreweries continuing topopup across the country.

As executive officer at ’s CraftBeer Industry AssociationChris McNamara explains, the market has opened significantly and there’slots to look forward to this year when it comes to enjoying arefreshing bottle –or tinnie –of brew.

Is the popularity of craft beer in still on the rise?

Definitely. Based on n Taxation Office data, the independent craft beer industry has grown by more than 30 per centin each of the past two years and now accounts for more than fourper centof all beer produced in .

There is no single reason, but two important factors are a growing desire by consumers to support small businesses, especially in food and beverage, andns really wanting to continually find new flavours in a range of food and beverage products. The rise of artisan cheese and bread reflect this as well.

How has the market changed from its earliest days to now?

Craft beer has always had a diverse market.

The groundbreaking breweries in the 1980s were found in such diverse areas as Fremantle, Ballarat and Sydney’s inner city.

There was never one type of person that drank craft beer and that is still the same today. Depending on where you go, you may see a bar full of tradies, inner city types, or young families.

It appeals to all.

What are some current trends in ‘s craft beer scene?

Tinnies are definitely the biggest trend at the moment. The number of beers available in cans has exploded in the past year and shows no sign of slowing down. And why should it? They are lighter to transport, do a great job of protecting the beer and cool down quicker.

What can consumers expect this year from the industry?

Craft brewers by their very nature are adventurous innovators. That’s why so many of them turn their backs on comfortable corporate careers. They want to continually challenge the status quo.

has been at the forefront of new hop development in recent years.

This is set to continue so expect to find a whole new world of aromas and flavours appearing in beers.

Sour, or wild, beers is another area that’s developing. These beers use different yeast strains and the results range from wonderfully dry and refreshing through to mouth puckeringly challenging. They have great potential to deliver the ultimate refreshing low alcohol beer for a hot n summer.

What should people be looking for when buying/drinking a craft beer?

Look for freshness. The fresher the better. And the best way of doing that is to support the local breweries in your part of the world.

Where do you think is the perfect place to enjoy a craft beer this summer?

Anywhere that you can just sit down and enjoy the beer. Don’t try and overthink it. Just let every sip remind you how good life is.

CRAFTING REPUTATION: The number of varieties of craft beer available in is matched by the diversity of the people making it their drink of choice.

QUALITY ASSURED: Craft brewers are renowned for being innovators who strive to create the perfect brew, and often turn their backs on corporate careers to do so.

   Dec 12

Foghorn hops to the challenge

HEAD OF STEAM: Shawn Sherlock has earned nationwide recognition for his work as head brewer at Foghorn Brewhouse located in King Street, Newcastle.The creative process of brewing drives Foghorn Brewhouse head brewer Shawn Sherlock.

It has inspired him to dabble with everything from hop-heavy India pale ales to mixing seafood into stouts.

“A craft brewer’s role is a lot like a head chef’s role, compared to a winemaker for example,” Sherlock says.

“With wine it’s so much about getting the soils right and the palate to know when the grape is right to go and blending them down the track.

“In brewing we’ve got this huge range of ingredients that we’re not directly involved in growing or supervising the hops. So we’re taking this wide range of ingredients and using our vision to put them together for a recipe that is hopefully tasty, good, and in my case, different and interesting.

“I don’t want to brew mainstream beer. That doesn’t mean I don’t brew beer that isn’t approachable, but I want to brew beer that’s focused on taste and quality.”

Located in King Street, Foghorn is named after the iconic coal ship horns which blast over the CBD.

Six fermenting tanks produce 1800-litre batches of beer three times a week, including porters, stouts, pale ales, IPAs, pilseners, wheat beers and Belgian and English ales.

All beer is produced on site and doesn’t require freight, which allows for a minimum turnover of three weeks from brewing to the customer’s glass.

Most bottleshops and pubs stock beer brewed months ago. Speaking to Sherlock his passion for Newcastle is infectious.

“In an era when manufacturing is moving out of town and to some extent dying, bringing back a manufacturing trade into the centre of the city was something good, albeit in a new different way to the old days,” he says.

Last yearFogHornErina opened on the Central Coast. All beer is brewed in King Street and couriered down the M1.

A thirdFogHornremains in Sherlock’s final vision.

“We haven’t got any immediate plans and we don’t have a particular location in mind,” he says.

“I would hope we can grow. With a brewery this size, we could probably stretch to a third one before we can expand the equipment itself, but there’s a lot of water to flow under the bridge yet.”

   Dec 12

Troy Grant says NSW bushfire response shows why RFS HQ should stay in Sydney

Emergency Services Minister Troy Grant said the current metro headquarters of the Rural Fire Service allowed it to host eight government agencies as bushfires raged on Saturday and Sunday. Photo by Wolter Peeters. ►RELATED:

Tragedy strikes Wentworth Browns againBowman property saved as Hugh reunites with WinxHomes and livestock lost as fires continue to burn across the stateLeadville blaze strikes prized studs, homesA “well-oiled”responseto the weekend’s bushfires justified the NSW Rural Fire Service being located in Sydney, according to Emergency Services Minister Troy Grant.

Government again copped criticism last week after Shooters, Fishers and Farmers’ Orange MP Philip Donato asked why the service’s head office, and associated jobs, would not be relocated to the bush when the current lease at Lidcombe is up in 2018.

But Mr Grant said the current metro headquarters allowed the service to host eight government agencies on Saturday and Sunday, allowing emergency groups to co-locate easily, and to broadcast and communicate more effectively with media.

“The location of the RFS headquarters means it is able to quickly and readily respond to events like those we saw over the weekend,” Mr Grant said.

Regional councils and regional volunteer organisations had lobbied government since 2015 to bring the office over the Great Divide to better fit its ‘rural’ moniker, and to deliver more jobs to regional towns.

In December Mr Grant’s predecessor David Elliott dashed those hopes and declared the NSW Rural Fire Service would instead move to a state-of-the art facility at Olympic Park at Homebush.

The Shooters, Fishers, and Farmers Party took up the cause again this month, with Mr Donato and arguing a the relocation of the Department of Primary Industries to Orange was a successful precedent for decentralisation.

MLC Robert Brown also said moving the service bush would also save government money in Sydney rent, while modern technology would bridge the distance between the city.

Mr Grant said it was essential for the headquarters to be convenient to major media outlets, operational stakeholders, and support agencies.

“During peak operational times the State Operations Centre within headquarters can swell to over 200 multi-agency personnel,” he said.

Almost 70 per cent of Rural Fire Service staff work in regional offices and local fire control centres

Mr Grant said government will continue looking at other opportunities for investment in emergency services infrastructure and operations across regional NSW.

   Dec 12

ReviewWhose Wives Are They Anyway?

THEATRE REVIEWWhose Wives Are They Anyway?DAPA TheatreDAPA Theatre, Hamilton. Ends February 25English-born actor-playwright Michael Parker, now resident in the United States, has notably written farcical comedies that appeal to American audiences. This play, for example, has two company vice-presidents having a golfing weekend while their wives shop in New York. They find themselves in trouble when they encounter the unsmiling female head of the firm that has taken over their company and demands to meet their wives that night. Amusing chaos ensues, with one of the men dressing, with a blonde wig, as an attractive woman, and a hotel receptionist bribed to be the other wife. And the chaos grows when the real wives turn up.

Director David Murray and a good acting team make this an enjoyable show, though the first night performance showed a need for sharper delivery of some lines. But the actors’ movements raised laughs, especially scenes that had three people in a bed, at least one virtually hidden, and the head and legs of different occupants visible. And they responded well to the demands placed on them by movements around the set, which includes the hotel reception area, an adjoining lounge room, stairs, hallways, room doors and two adjoining bedrooms.

Oliver Pink and Conagh Punch keep swiftly on the move as the two golfers, with Pink’s David astutely manipulating his younger colleague John’s behaviour and that man showing in return how he has risen to a senior position at a young age. Maddy Lardner keeps the laughs coming as the increasingly inebriated receptionist, repeatedly pouring herself glasses of champagne to try to relax her nervousness. Carol Hong is a suitably unsmiling hotel manager, Rob Williams is an amusing hypochondriac handyman, who is adept at using problems, such as a breakdown in the hotel’s phone system, to suit his own purposes. Jennifer Dixon’s attractive but stern and sharply worded company head would have anyone running for cover. And Natalie Burg and Beth Traynor are delightful as the shopped-out wives looking for relaxation as they arrive with bags of purchases from noted New York stores.

The staging’s main weakness is the characters’ handling of phone calls from people wanting to place bets on racehorses. The actors’ delivery of the puzzled responses when they answer these calls , including their repetition of the horse names and other words used by the callers, needs to be stronger, so that watchers laugh rather than look puzzled.

   Dec 12

Centenary of the Great War

AHOY THERE: A trio of n nurses enjoy a light-hearted moment on board their hospital ship. Photo: The Digger’s View by Juan Mahony.

Newcastle Morning Herald transcriptions and Hunter Valley enlistment and death details for February 12-18, 1917.

EASTER PARCELSOrders will be taken at the 1st Light Horse Depot, 28 Moore Street, Sydney, until Friday, February 23rd, for Easter parcels for men of any unit on active service. Send postal note for 7s.6d or 15s, and either of the following parcels will be posted to the soldier whose address is given: No. 1 Parcel (7s.6d) contains 1 tin biscuits, 1 tin fruit, 1 tin vegetables, 1 towel, 1 writing pad and envelopes, 2oz tin tobacco, 1 tin sardines.

No. 2 (15s) contains 1 tin biscuits, 1 tin vegetables, 1 tin shortbread, 1 tin fruit 1 plum pudding, 50 cigarettes, 2oz tobacco, 1 tin strawberry conserve, 1 tin Ideal milk, 1 tin sardines, 1 towel, soap, toothbrush, tooth paste.

NEWS OF THE DAYMr Jensen, the Minister for the Navy, has expressed the hope that within two years would be able to build her own submarines in her own dockyards. He added that he was considering the advisability of sending another 10 men to England, in addition to the 15 already there, to gain experience in the special work of building submarines. He anticipated that after two years’ experience these men would return to , and the Commonwealth would then be able to commence the building of submarines at the Cockatoo Dockyard.

Senator Pearce, the Minister for Defence, does not regard as favourable the suggestion made by Mr. Hampson, MHR, that the recruiting figures should be published side by side with the casualties for the same period. There was no relation, said Senator Pearce, between the casualties and the number of recruits coming forward. Those who enlisted now would not be in the firing line for perhaps six months. In September last, for instance, the casualties numbered 19,000. If Mr. Hampton could tell him the casualties which would occur in July next he would tell him how many men must come forward to fill their places.

MESSAGE IN BOTTLEMr Alfred Bashford, of Thomas Street, Dudley, whilst fishing on a recent evening on the Nine Mile Beach, near Belmont, found a bottle on the sands, containing a message, having been thrown over from a New Zealand troopship. The message was written in indelible pencil on departmental paper, and was rolled round a piece of wood, and contained the following: “Would the finder kindly communicate with Mrs. J. Hare, Remneru, Auckland, New Zealand, as this was thrown overboard from the troopship – midway between New Zealand and by her son, W. J. Hare, 3/2630, 20th New Zealand Medical Corps, on January 7th, 1917. All well and having a very decent trip. Kindly send this on to mother. Thanking you, sincerely yours, W. J. Hare.” The police at Dudley have this document, and are forwarding same direct by registered post to Mrs Hare, as desired.

RED CROSS SOCIETYThe first executive committee meeting of the year of the Newcastle Red Cross Society was recently held at the depot. Mrs J.C. Reid, president, was in the chair, and there was a good attendance of members. A letter was read from headquarters requesting the society to curtail their efforts with regard to making shirts and pyjamas, there being sufficient of these garments stored to cope with all present demands. Headquarters suggested that this branch take up spinning, as all woollen articles are most urgently needed.

The society decided to comply with this request. Mrs Reid subsequently went to Sydney and made arrangements for an expert spinning instructor – Miss Mealey – to come to Newcastle and instruct any members who so desire in the art of spinning.

TENSIONS INCREASEMuch interest is taken in a lengthy Cabinet meeting, held Wednesday, following which President Wilson worked alone in his library. The Cabinet has not reached a decision on the question of arming American liners. It is understood that the opinion is that the company has the legal right to arm, but the situation is so delicate that the Government is anxious to avoid action which will precipitate war. There is an unquestionable difference of opinion in the Cabinet, but the opponents of arming were in the minority. It is expected that a method of providing guns will be found in a few days.

AFRIC SUNKThe White Star Liner ‘Afric,’ 12,000 tons, employed by the Admiralty as a transport, has been submarined and sunk while on a voyage outwards from England. Seventeen of the Afric’s company are missing. A later report stated: “Five of the Afric’s crew are believed to have been killed.” The Afric, which was built by Messrs Harland and Wolff in 1889, was 11,999 tons.

HAIG’S VIEWSFrench advices report that Field-marshal Haig, in an interview with Paris journalists, said: “We’ve reached the maximum of munitions. We can supply more than our Allies will need. We will break the German front severely at several points. “The Germans are powerfully entrenched, but we intend to strike with full force, until we totally destroy the German Army. This year will show Germany beaten.”

MEMENTOES OF FALLENA number of n ladies have asked Mr Andrew Fisher, the High Commissioner, to suggest to the n Government to give the next of kin of fallen soldiers a memento, either in the shape of a medal or one like the French government’s plaque, on which the soldiers’ names are engraved over the words “He Died For France”. Mr Fisher promised to submit the suggestion to his Government.

AMERICA AND GERMANYThe situation is growing steadily more acute. President Wilson may consult the Congress on the question of arming ships. There is growing irritation in the press at the inaction of the Government. It is voiced by the “New York World”, which says: “Germany’s policy towards the United States is a continuous overt act, and might as well be recognised as such. It is war under another name. Our ports are practically blocked. Whatever action President Wilson takes now, he cannot be branded as the aggressor.”

The New York World quotes Dr Zimmerman, the German Minister for Foreign Affairs, as saying: “I give you my word of honour that the Yarrowdale prisoners will be released as soon as we receive positive assurances no German sailors are held In the United States.”

AUSTRALIAN SUCCESSFrom C.E.W. Bean, Official n War Correspondent, British Headquarters, France, February 5. Last night the ns on the Somme attacked again the same trenches which they took and lost three nights before. They retook all that they previously attacked, and more. Two German officers, and 63 other Germans, were taken prisoner. The Germans twice counter-attacked during the night, but both attacks were beaten off by the n artillery before they reached our lines. No news has yet reached here whether the ns are going to send their Prime Minister to represent our country at the conference. The war has really reached a stage where it is a fight to a finish. “All in,” as the ns say, “and it is quite certain that the Germans intend to use every means in their power to the utmost of their strength, until the end of the war.”

35TH AND 36TH BATTALIONSThe Comfort Funds of the 35th Battalion and the 36th Battalion intend to make a united effort early in March to raise funds for the benefit of the soldiers under their special care. It is proposed to hold a grand garden fete in the grounds of Mr D. Sneddon, Samdon and Winship streets, Hamilton, generously lent for the function. An electric installation, band selections, stalls, refreshments, and many other outdoor attractions, promise well for the success of the joint undertaking.

NESTLE’S MILKWriting to his mother in England, Private Guy S. Smith, 2396, states: “Our rations are still on the short side, but they got a bit better; also in a village some seven miles away is a Greek enterprising enough to keep a shop. He only sells Greek fags, biscuits, and chocolate (both very dear), and what we think most of – Nestle’s Milk – at 1/3 a tin. What a wonderful thing is Nestle’s Milk. I shall never be able to live without it again. After bread it is the first thing we think of. It will make any dish good, and if we can only get enough of it we don’t care much what our rations are. We eat it from the tin; drink it with hot or cold water; spread on bread it makes a delicious change from the continual marmalade; it takes the place of sugar and milk with oatmeal or rice; boiled with powdered biscuits it makes even these prodigies of hatefulness palatable.

ENLISTMENTSWilliam James Folpp, Baerami; George William Broadhead, Lambton; Ernest Clark, Newcastle; Thomas Hutchison Ford, Wallsend; Charles William Grant, Maitland; Hubert Clarence Hain, West Maitland; Kenneth L’ Estrange Heath, Merewether; Clarence William Hellyer, East Maitland; Herbert Wellington Jones, Dudley; John Hazel Lay, Wallsend; George McCubbine, Wickham; George Leslie Nicholson, New Lambton; Augustus Petersen, Newcastle; William Horace Phipps, Baerami; James Reginald Reid, Lambton; John Thomas Rose, Wickham; George Charles Stevens, Horseshoe Bend; William Henry Willis, Mayfield; David Young, Hamilton; Thomas Young, West Wallsend; William Young, Hamilton.

DEATHSPte Allan Henry Avard, Thornton; Gnr Norman Russell Crouch, Lower Belford; Pte Norman Elliot Cunningham, Newcastle; Spr William John Henderson, Minmi; Pte David Hamilton Lawrence, Lostock; Pte Alfred Lochrin, Hamilton; Pte John Thomas Roberts, Adamstown.

David Dial OAM is a Hunter Valley-based military historian. Follow David’s research atfacebook苏州夜网/HunterValleyMilitaryHistory