Two men taken to hospital after car accident at Kirkconnell

Two men were taken to hospital aftera single motor vehicle accident at Kirkconnell this morning.
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Around 7:40am the menwere in a car crash on the Great Western Highway at Sunny Corner Road.

When paramedics arrived at the scene, the men were already outside of the vehicle.

The two men, both in their thirties were transported to Bathurst Base Hospital in a stable condition.

Two men were involved in a single vehicle accident on the Great Western Highway at Sunny Corner Road this morning. Photo: ANDREW MICALLEF, WIDE AREA COMMUNICATIONS

Two men were involved in a single vehicle accident on the Great Western Highway at Sunny Corner Road this morning. Photo: ANDREW MICALLEF, WIDE AREA COMMUNICATIONS

Two men were involved in a single vehicle accident on the Great Western Highway at Sunny Corner Road this morning. Photo: ANDREW MICALLEF, WIDE AREA COMMUNICATIONS

Read the full story in tomorrow’s Western Advocate.

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Praise for the friendly people at Clunes Library

Catherine Hill does an awesome job of running the Clunes Library. On the way to our library, my 10-year-old son said; “The library is like another home.”
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Catherine is always very friendly and has helped to create an atmosphere for all children where they can feel safe to go, to enjoy all it’s wonderful resources and to be with their friends.

The lovely volunteers (CWA) also help greatly with this as well. A very big, warm thank you to Catherine and her volunteers for making the Clunes Library a great community space for all ages; indeed for my children and I, it is the hub of the town.

Kym Green


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Online survey has highlighted concerns

This letter is in response to Ian MacBean’s (March13) regarding concerns of rate equity and “fair go” for the Trentham ratepayers.
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I believe the exposure from the Hepburn Council online “Our Say” has highlighted concerns of ratepayers across the shire and not so much a sympathy vote for the Trentham community.

Many small rural communities are struggling with rising bureaucracy and infrastructure costs which puts pressure to regularly raise resident rates.

A report this month by the Victorian Auditor-General has been scathing of rating practices of local government and called for regular strategy reviews and better communication with ratepayers on decision making. The report conveys that there is a lack of clarity, detail and direction. The differential rate system is being applied with broad interpretation and the farming sector is actively seeking a farm rate review.

I maintain that Trentham woes are symptomatic of a broad spectrum of unease over local government tax collection practices and the flow on of how these monies are then redistributed as services rendered to local residents.

On a seperate topic, “Vote for Rate Equity”, posted more than a week after Ian MacBean’s topic, was also voted in the top 10 most popular on “Our Say”. This topic concerns ratepayers with property affected by water authorities and planning policy which prohibits building a dwelling or sheds thus devaluing their landholding.

Council CIV rate valuations are underpinned by valuations reflecting the ability to have a dwelling. They believe council has been collecting rates based on the higher valuations. If they are refused a permit then rates should be significantly reduced. There are property owners who have invested many, many thousands of dollars only to be devastated by the current circumstances.

Read the online “Our Say” comments of Landowners expressing frustration that the denial of the right to build and the right to use their land effectively devalues their property significantly and council still tax at the higher rate.

Unfortunately I believe this topic will likely stay in the high 10. Why? Because if the Trentham community or other affected landholders benefit by a rate review, rather than keeping the dollars rolling in for the shire management, someone else has to pay more.

Ian Esmore


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Long waiting times ‘fuel hospital violence’

A VIOLENT outburst at Werribee Mercy Hospital, in which a man punched and threatened to kill nurses and a security guard, has added to calls for the government to protect frontline workers.
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Mercy Health says there are up to six violent episodes at the Werribee emergency ward every week, most involving patients with drug or mental health problems and anger over lengthy waiting times.

In November, paramedics took a Werribee man, 19, to the hospital after police followed a trail of blood to parkland near his house where they found him self-harming.

Werribee Magistrates Court last Wednesday heard that the man became angry and aggr-essive when nurses would not give him anti-depressants, and began making threats to kill a hospital security guard.

He left the hospital but soon returned, yelling more threats at nurses, and assaulted a security guard who tackled him to the ground.

Magistrate John Bentley ordered the man be assessed for a community corrections order mandating mental health treatment.

A nurse told the Weekly aggressive behaviour, ranging from low-level abuse to serious assaults, was commonplace at Werribee Mercy. The nurse, who did not want to be named, said waiting times regularly fuelled violence.

“People have yelled and screamed at me when I’ve been working in triage, displaying really aggressive behaviour,” she said.

Incidents of ongoing violence and abuse at Victorian hospitals have prompted renewed calls for the state government to honour a pre-election promise to create a specific offence for assaulting emergency ward staff.

Australian Nursing Federation state secretary Lisa Fitzpatrick said it was disappointing the government hadn’t released details of the new legislation and demanded the government detail how it will spend a promised $5.8 million to implement 18 recommendations of a state inquiry, including training for medical staff and security guards on violence prevention and a public awareness campaign.

Health Minister David Davis said an advisory committee of medical experts, hospital management, security staff and police would be set up to guide the rollout of the recommendations.

Mercy Health chief operating officer John Fogarty said the hospital supported measures to put trained guards in wards, but did not want them to be armed with guns.

Russell’s ‘Swan song’ as court Registrar

THIRTY years after being posted to Gunnedah for a ‘two-year stay’ Russell Swanson is calling ‘time’ on a career in the town he now calls home.
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During his three decades as Local Court Registrar, Russell has seen changes sweep through the court system, from simple things such as the replacement of the manual “clunker” typewriters and carbon paper, lugging around the voluminous births, deaths and marriage registers and being made acutely aware (on a regular basis) of not making too many STD (straight through dial) calls and photocopies, to the rise of the computer.

“I suppose it is like any government department or industry, much has changed over the past 30 years especially with the introduction of technology – computers, the internet and everything that involves,” said Russell.

Russell began his career with the Department in Singleton in October, 1980. He returned to his hometown of Wollongong for two years before applying for Gunnedah and Manilla, a posting he planned for two to three years before heading back to the coast.

He came to Gunnedah as a Grade 3 clerk under the watchful eye of Clerk of Petty Sessions, Michael Hinchey.

Gunnedah was quickly to become home for Russell, wife Jeanette and daughters, Anna and Elizabeth.

“We gradually fell in love with the place and after a couple of years Jeanette also worked on a temporary basis for the Department. Michael Hinchey was a great mentor, he had forgotten more about the law than most thought they knew and he was a wonderful character.”

When Mick, as he was known, retired in 1996, Russell took over the top job.

“Over the years there has been many changes with of course the rise of the computer, being the most profound.

“We now have JusticeLink which encompasses the entire State and that has made the job so much easier.

“There is also a welcome reduction in agency work – such as registering and supplying births, deaths and marriage forms and many other tasks that have been simplified by technology. This has not always been welcome and is a mixed blessing as I would have actually preferred to have kept some of them.

“The Clerk of Petty Sessions (CPS) was once looked upon as the font of all knowledge but now there are so many other departments and avenues for people to obtain assistance and advice.”

Russell said he loved his job because he was always intrigued by the law and the way the system worked, particularly the criminal and civil jurisdictions.

Over the years he has seen other changes, such as the growth of apprehended violence orders (AVO) – a way of confronting domestic and personal violence issues.

“There has been a remarkable increase in the number of AVOs coming through the system which is disappointing in one way but it does provide an avenue for people to obtain protection when there has been violence or a real fear of violence,” Russell added.

Russell also laments the removal of District Court sittings from the smaller towns such as Gunnedah.

“There was a real buzz and excitement when the District Court sat every month. The barristers would come to town and there was a certain amount of pomp and ceremony.

“It was a different atmosphere and of course it was good for the town’s economy with so many people staying at motels and spending their money.”

Travel, golf and volunteer work now loom large on Russell and Jeanette’s plans in retirement.

“Anna lives in London so we hope to visit and I would like to play more golf as well as do some volunteer work. I hope I have helped the community during my time.”

FINAL day. Registrar of Gunnedah Local Court Russell Swanson retired last Thursday after 30 years in the job.

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Domestic violence: Fractured lives, guilty secrets

It became second nature — each morning as Pamela McConchie travelled to work, she would get ready to put on her ‘mask’.
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For more than a decade, slipping on that cool, calm exterior was just part of her daily routine. As the owner of a recruitment company and professional businesswoman, she knew this mask — the competent and savvy one — had to stay on all day.

But when she returned home each night, the mask would come off revealing the woman underneath — someone scared, bracing herself for what could happen when she walked through that door.

Moving on: Domestic violence survivor Pamela McConchie kept her violent relationship hidden from everyone, including her friends and family. Picture: Rob Carew

She knew that at any time, her partner may hit her. And during the bad times, he did.

“There’s an incredible amount of shame knowing that you’re a professional person and you’re caught up in this sort of relationship,” Ms McConchie says.

“So I kept it hidden. For the whole time I kept it hidden. I knew it was wrong but didn’t know how to change it.”

Up until five years ago, when she finally mustered the courage to leave the relationship, the Ringwood East mother was one of the many family violence victims in the eastern and south-eastern suburbs.

The most recent figures from Victoria Police show the number of reported incidents has risen dramatically in the past few years — up 43.6 per cent.

In Monash, the number of reported cases has increased from 592 in 2009-10 to 924 in 2011-12. In Knox, the increase is similar, from 904 in 2009-10 to 1379 for the same period.

For those working in the field — such as women’s support groups and police — the numbers show that new approaches to investigating the crime, and raising awareness of the issue are working. Victims are more willing to report cases to police or use the support services available to get out.

Ms McConchie was with her partner for 13 years. The relationship became violent “very early on”.

After each time he hit her, a screaming voice inside her would insist she leave. But Ms McConchie, like most other women caught up in similar situations, found it incredibly difficult to leave the man she fell in love with.

Eventually in 2009 after several attempts, she left the relationship for good, but not before there was much emotional damage to both her and her daughter, now 14.

Ms McConchie credits the help of her immediate family and then support groups, which she had avoided for years, as the reason why she could finally leave.

She now works as a media advocate for Women’s Health East and regularly speaks about her experience to encourage other women to speak up about their problems.

She believes the number of incidents is rising primarily because victims are more willing to report an abusive partner. “It’s become more open, that’s my opinion. There are advocates out there talking about it whereas before there was no one.”

Dandenong Police family violence liaison officer Sergeant Gary Gladwell says the spike in figures is down to a combination of factors.

“We’re enforcing the reporting of family violence incidents more, and people are more prepared to report matters to the police as a result of better education programs out there.”

The Dandenong police run a dedicated recidivist family violence unit, which launched as a pilot program in April last year. The unit can receive more than 100 call-outs a month — and many of those might be to the same address.

Sergeant Gladwell says the Dandenong unit, and similar ones in Casey and Knox, have proved invaluable, but it was now down to the public to ensure intimate partner violence is eradicated.

“We’re pretty much at the limit of what we can do. We need the co-operation of female victims; it’s very hard to prosecute without their help.”

He says it is not uncommon for a woman to be beaten by her partner, call the police and then back down at the final hurdle.

There is a growing base of research on why men hit the person closest to them in the first place. While unemployment, work stress, upbringing and substance abuse are all cited as contributing factors, research overwhelmingly shows that gender inequality and power imbalances are the prime reason.

A 2009 report from the National Council to Reduce Violence against Women and Children found that domestic violence stemmed from “an ongoing pattern of behaviour aimed at controlling one’s partner through fear”.

Ms McConchie’s own attempts to reach into the male psyche lead her to suspect sexism is a big part of it.

“I don’t know, from the male’s point of view. I don’t know why they hit the female in their life but they won’t go out and hit the workmate or their mates or anyone,” she says.

“They have the anger, but they don’t actually lash out at others. They only lash out at us. And I don’t know why that is.”

The children who witness violent acts within their home can also be severely affected.

Ms McConchie says her daughter changed from a grade-A, affable student to a quiet and reserved person who took 80 days off school last year and spent much of her time alone.

She has no doubt this was because of the violence she witnessed and the fear that her mother may leave.

“It breaks my heart to know that I have inadvertently done this to her and I am doing everything to put into place a solution for her.”

She says her daughter still loves her father dearly but the violence and uncertainty of the past has changed her. “She is still the same beautiful child she was but there is a sadness for, and total disconnect from, everything around her. She is lonely and keeps herself hidden.”

Pakenham mother Lisa Fothergill, a foster carer who looks after children who’ve witnessed severe domestic violence, says it is easy to tell the children who come from this sort of background. “Some of the boys have been disrespectful to me as a woman and called me names that most likely they’ve heard their mother been called,” she says.

“I’ve found that the girls are also quite jumpy. For example, if you touch their hair they coil back and get worried very quickly.”

The after-effects of domestic violence range from child to child.

“Some are completely traumatised from the past and have nightmares, while others become completely desensitised to it. I see these kids watching TV and when something [violent] happens and you expect them to say ‘woah’, they just sit there.”

If you are experiencing family violence, contact:

■ Eastern Domestic Violence Service: 9259 4200

■ Men’s Referral Service: 1800 065 973 or 9428 2899

■ Women’s Domestic Violence Crisis Service: 1800 015 188 or 9322 3555

■ In an emergency, call Triple-O.



Number of reported incidents by local government area


Cardinia: 608

Casey: 2264

Dandenong: 1459

Knox: 904

Maroondah: 539

Monash: 592

Yarra Ranges: 675


Cardinia: 984

Casey: 3172

Dandenong: 1845

Knox: 1379

Maroondah: 722

Monash: 924

Yarra Ranges: 1068

Source: Victoria Police

Dentist’s tax evasion leads to $1.2m debt

A BORONIA dentist has accumulated more than $1.2 million in debt in what the Australian Tax Office has described as one of the worst cases of tax evasion ever uncovered.
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Dr Thomas Balfoort failed to fill in a tax return for 15 years from 1998 and was ordered to pay more than $600,000 in back taxes and the same amount in penalties to the ATO.

But after he was ordered to file his late returns, the 69-year-old dentist repeatedly failed to meet deadlines set for them and was fined several times.

ATO barrister Alf Micaleff said Balfoort’s tax evasion was “one of the worst I have seen”.

“He has not paid direct tax for 15 years. That’s $40,000 a year that he hasn’t paid one cent of,” Mr Micaleff told Ringwood Magistrates Court.

Appearing last week, Balfoort was fined a further $12,000 and ordered to complete 200 hours of community service for failing to comply with another court order last year.

Balfoort eventually filed the missing tax returns late last year, which cost him $25,000 in accounting fees.

His lawyer, Glenys Jardine, said everything went “horribly wrong” for Balfoort in 1998 when a property development deal went sour.

“The cost of that was bankruptcy and he lost his marriage,” she said. “It was extremely traumatic.”

She said Balfoort currently had no assets and rented his practice and his Boronia home. Balfoort was discharged from bankruptcy in 2005.

Magistrate Max Cashmore questioned whether Balfoort had distributed assets elsewhere.

“You have got to have earned a lot of money to have that [tax] liability. It’s got to have gone somewhere,” Mr Cashmore said.

Mr Micaleff said people earning an income in Australia were duty-bound to lodge the correct paperwork. The Australian people were the real victims of Balfoort’s tax evasion.

Mr Micaleff said that despite the unlikelihood of the total debt ever being paid, jailing Balfoort would not recoup any of the money. “He is very lucky that I am not requesting he is marched out that door [to the holding room].”

In sentencing, Mr Cashmore said he took into account Balfoort’s guilty pleas. . “It’s a very sorry situation.”

Balfoort must complete his community service within 12 months.

New name, same store

GLOUCESTER Retravision will cease to be from next week.
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When the store opens for business following the Easter long weekend next Tuesday it will be as Gloucester Leading Appliances.

The move comes after huge upheavals in Retravision in the past 12 months which saw the company wind up.

It left many of the hundreds of Retravision stores on the east coast without any place to go and dozens closed as a result including local stores at Armidale, Forster and Laurieton.

For Wendy White and her son Stewart Carruthers, closure of the Gloucester store was never an option. Wendy bought the store in May 1987.

“At the end of the day did we shut our doors and go fishing, or did we say ‘hell, this has taken up a lot of time in our lives, we’re not going to give up now’?” Wendy said.

So she and Stewart spent six months establishing direct accounts with all their suppliers in a bid to remain operational.

“But we still needed a buying group. Suppliers do their deals with a buying group – not you (individual stores).”

Enter Leading Appliances.

“They let us vote for our name, colours and logo and they let us be more independent. It will allow us to sell the items we want to sell and we think the people of Gloucester want,” Mrs White said.

She said, while the name was changing, little else would.

Dedication to customer service and providing the best item for the best possible price would remain the core objective of the business.

“I think people would miss it if we were not here,” Ms White said.

“We would like to think people will continue supporting us and we will do our level best to look after them.

“All we ask is that they give us a chance. Don’t assume we can’t compete on price. Give us a chance to match, beat or reluctantly admit defeat.”

Leading Appliances operates more than 70 stores in rural and regional areas.

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Gallery: VTCA west B-Werribee Centrals win premiership

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael CoppClick through the carousel above for our picture gallery.
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Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

Werribee Centrals beat St Andrews to win the Victorian Turf Cricket Association west B1 premiership and go through the season undefeated. Picture: Michael Copp

‘Now is a good time to lobby’ 

Best for the region: Anne Parnham will lead the charge for business in Sydney’s south-west. Picture: Jeff de PasqualeANNE Parnham has made it her business to ensure the stability and future of Camden and of neighbouring areas such as Wollondilly, Liverpool and Bankstown.
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Ms Parnham, the Campbelltown Chamber of Commerce president, was named inaugural president of the NSW South West Regional Advisory Council this month.

The council will focus on the business needs of the region.

With the federal election six months away, Ms Parnham said the council would seek commitments from political parties regarding transport, infrastructure and tourism projects to ensure that the needs of local small businesses were met.

“There are a whole lot of small businesses who have gathered together to be one big voice and we hope to be loud enough to get politicians to agree to do things before we vote them in,” she said.

Ms Parnham said one central south-west Sydney business body would be better than individual chambers.

“We’ll have more of an impact and a 99 per cent more chance of being heard,” she said. “Campbelltown can actually be heard because we are bigger and with a professional group (NSW Business Chamber) behind us.

“Being the first point of contact and communication will allow me to be vocal for the region.

“Campbelltown is a priority for me, but it’s still a part of the entire south-west region, which together [with other communities] in one voice, can only be beneficial.”

NSW Business Chamber south-west Sydney area manager Michelle Caruso said the establishment of the council was a significant step forward for business in the region.

“(The council) gives the region a voice at the decision table of the NSW Business Chamber State Council,” Ms Caruso said.

“The NSW Business Chamber is one of the most well resourced chambers in Australia with a growing membership that has just reached 12,000. That’s a powerful force that our region can work with.”

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Raft of ideas to help Rowville youth

PERFORMING arts and youth group-style activities could be the answer to getting Rowville youth off the street, a community member says.
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KC Boey, a member of the Rowville Anglican Church known as RAFT and its former community relations manager, spoke about his ideas at a Rowville community forum.

New solution: KC Boey says the church can help young people in Rowville just by being a venue. Picture: Wayne Hawkins

One of his ideas was for church groups and other community groups to offer secular activities that would appeal to young people in the growing suburb.

“Whether it is a church or a temple or mosque or a council building, they all have one thing in common.

“They have facilities for ankle-biters and the aged, but very little for youth and young adults — there is a big void,” Mr Boey said.

RAFT offers dance lessons, mechanic groups, tutoring and music lessons. “We are not all about getting people to become Anglican. We as a family at RAFT have the same issues as everybody else,” Mr Boey said.

“Our youth and young people have the same problems. When they get to that age of rebellion, we have to put on our thinking cap to provide activities that are not necessarily to do with the Bible.”

At the workshop, he told the group that the changing composition of Rowville — with more Malaysian, Sri Lankan and Chinese families moving in — could potentially make Rowville the cultural hub of Knox.

“Rowville is a unique suburb with a higher socio-economic status and the council would not have to inject funds to initiate this objective,” Mr Boey said.

He would like to a see a partnership created between Rowville Secondary College and Monash University’s Academy of the Arts — “we need to be more imaginative and proactive, thinking outside the box”.

“The new arrivals highly value education and see performing arts and culture as an extension of education. If we keep young people occupied [playing music], they will have no reason to look for something else to.”

Mr Boey said it would be a win for both parties and called on the council to facilitate meetings between the parties.

His comments followed an article in the Weekly about a campaign for a skate park adjacent to Wellington Village because of a lack of facilities for young people in Rowville.

Cr Nicole Seymour said she heard “loud and clearly” at the forum that public transport and road congestion were the biggest concerns for Rowville residents.

Other issues included parks and open space, leafy streetscapes and views, and retail and general activities. A follow-up workshop will be held in May.

What do you think? Post a comment below.

Local ingredients to star at Inn’s Easter feast

Chef and author Jane Grover is looking forward to sampling local produce at the Old Vic Inn.Renowned chef Jane Grover will use local ingredients cooking Lamb, Pine Nuts and Mint Rounds among other dishes at Canowindra’s NSW Wine Festival celebrations on March 30.
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A menu released for the event at the Old Vic Inn shows the evening will begin with a first course of Bruschetta with Tomato and Basil, Beef and Vegetable Rolls, Savoury Muffins, Hummus and Bubba Ganoush.

Ms Grover will cook Chicken and Lemongrass Skewers, Lentil and Sweet Potato Patties and Pork and Pistachio Terrine in a demonstration for the second course.

The main course will feature Herbed Crumbed Pork Cutlet with Caramelised Apple, Roast Vegetables and Beans with Almond and Mint Crumble, while apple crumble will be served for dessert.

The multi-course tasting menu will showcase local and seasonal produce, matched with the region’s award winning organic wines.

Ms Grover said she was eager to sample what the region has to offer.

“I am really excited about my return visit to the Cowra-Canowindra region,” she said.

President of the Cowra Region Vineyard Association Sam Statham said the event will sample Ms Grover’s recipes, with the menu referenced from her cookbook Naked Food.

“When you have the meal you can see the book and see how it’s done. It’s not just a wine dinner. It’s the first time Canowindra’s had an educational chef to do a demonstration,” he said.

“It will feature a lot of whole food ingredients and healthy cooking as well as using local produce.”

Jennifer Beasley, manager at The Old Vic Inn, said locals can enjoy trying the region’s food and wine in a relaxed atmosphere.

Ingredients will be sourced from local and regional suppliers Gaskill Greens, Trunkey Creek, Breakout River Meats, Canowindra Country Bakehouse and Manildra’s flour mills.

The event starts Saturday 6.30pm and tickets are available at the Old Vic Inn and Cowra Visitor Information Centre.

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New lead emerges in Penny Hill case

A forensic officer examines a Datsun Stanza as part of the investigation into the death of Penny Hill. Photo: NSW POLICE MEDIAA DARK blue Datsun Stanza could hold the key to solving the murder of a woman in western NSW more than 20 years ago.
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NSW Police have uncovered fresh leads into the murder of Penny Hill at Coolah in 1991, and are seeking information about the vehicle as part of their investigation.

Penny was aged 20 when she was found unconscious with severe head and facial injuries near Coolah early in the morning of July 8, 1991. She did not regain consciousness and died in hospital two weeks later.

In 2008, the Western Region Unsolved Homicide team began further investigations into Penny’s murder and a second inquest was conducted in 2012.

Since then, detectives have received new information that a car seen at the motel and in the Coolah township on the night Penny was assaulted could have been a Datsun Stanza, not a Commodore as previously believed.

Investigators have begun examining a Datsun Stanza similar to the vehicle described with further examinations expected to be conducted over the next few weeks.

During the investigation, police also collected DNA samples from several men to compare with a DNA profile found in the motel room last occupied by Penny. Unsolved Homicide investigator Detective Sergeant Jason Darcy has renewed an appeal for anyone with information about Ms Hill’s death to come forward.

“Investigators wish to speak with any person in Coolah who may have seen a dark blue Datsun Stanza in Coolah on the weekend Penny was assaulted,” he said.

“We believe a number of persons may not have come forward because a different vehicle was originally reported.” Anyone with information should call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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