“THE DUKE “
September 2016 Update from The Friends of Freshwater Inc.
Daylight Saving has again arrived to relieve the early morning darkness. Spring has sprung with hot dry westerly winds and hints of summer heat. Volunteer surfing patrols on Freshwater Beach have resumed, but only the wet-suited are in the water. Whales are migrating up the coast to their breeding grounds in Hervey Bay, and in their wake, sharks are circling. Summer will soon be upon us.
B-DOUBLE TRUCK CONVOYS RAISE SAFETY CONCERNS
B-Double trucks carrying excavated material from the Harbord Diggers construction site are continuing to cause widespread community concern in Freshwater. In one 30- minute period this week, no less than 40 fully laden trucks rolled through Freshwater village. When a Traffic Management Plan was hammered out at the DA Approval process, it was agreed by all parties that the narrow streets of Freshwater, and particularly Evans Street, were inappropriate for such large truck movements. That Plan has apparently been abandoned by the builder and the trucks have gone rogue. Now we find trucks arriving as early as 3.30am for their first load at daybreak and making three trips per day, all of which are moving through Freshwater Village. The builder, Ganellen, appears indifferent to the safety concerns raised by our community.
BABY HEALTH CENTRE TO GO
Freshwater’s long established Early Childhood Centre is set to close. It is slated to be part of a consolidated service within the new Community Health Centre being constructed near Warringah Mall. Mothers will then have to travel by car to the Mall to attend previously arranged appointments. This Centre will service the whole of the Northern Beaches.
The Village Early Childhood Centre is much cherished by young mothers, who can drop in for advice, and is used as a meeting point for mothers’ groups. It is pram accessible.
Located in a heritage listed building (a former fire station) it is an important part of the Village fabric.
Are we up for a fight to keep this Service in the Village?
A BROADCASTING CAREER STARTS ON A BUS TRIP TO MANLY WHARF
It’s not often that a notable career commences by chance on a bus trip from North Curl Curl to Manly, but that was the experience of a young Norman May in 1957. Travelling to work in the city, the Freshwater surf lifesaver, who was part of Freshwater’s legendary R and R team, sat next to Richard Healy, then NSW Director of Sport for the ABC and a well-known sporting commentator (and later, long term Member for Wakehurst). In the course of conversation, Healy asked May if he would be interested in providing expert commentary at a Surf Carnival being held at Dee Why at the weekend. In the early days of television, the ABC, did outside broadcasts of a wide range of sports on a weekly basis. May commentated on the event and was then invited to become a sports broadcasting trainee. The rest is history, as it involved a lengthy career where he used his encyclopaedic knowledge of a wide variety of sports to become one of the nation’s most recognised and acknowledged sports broadcasters. He is best known for his Olympic swimming broadcasts but was adept at covering everything from fencing to rugby.
Although he never married, and lived for a long time with his mother in the family home at Abbott Road, North Curl Curl, in his retirement years, Norman “ Nugget” May moved to Bondi. He died, aged 88, on 11 September 2016.
FOOTPATH MEMORIAL PLAQUE FOR WORLD WAR 1 DECEASED SOLDIER
Horace Sydney Logan was killed in France during World War 1 a century ago. He was one of his Battalion who survived the horrendous Battle of Fromelles only to be shot in the head by sniper fire two weeks later.
The Soldiers Avenue of Honour Stakeholders Group is installing a bronze Footpath Memorial Plaque (see montage) in Soldiers Avenue adjacent to his allocated tree on the eastern corner of Eric Street and Soldiers Avenue. This will be commemorated with a ceremony at this tree on Armistice Day, 11th November, 2016. “Ponto” as he was known, was a student of St. Josephs College, and when he died, his family donated a rowing eight boat to enable the College to compete in its first Head of the River. Logan was also a founding member of Freshwater Surf Club (see photo of him seated in the front row, first right) and his name is on the Club’s Honour Board. Current students from St. Joseph College will form an Honour Guard at the ceremony.
FRIGID FROGS FLY THE FLAG
It’s a proud tradition for one of our local winter swimming clubs, the Frigid Frogs which operates throughout the winter at South Curl Curl Pool. It has again won the Australian Winter Swimming Championship as the best all-round club. This is the 14th occasion that this has occurred and is in part due to the dominance of its swimmers in the older age categories. Local swimmers Warren “Wick” Riley, Max Van Gelder and Barry Lumsdaine excelled in the Over 80 category, while Ossie Doherty did likewise in the over 90 category. The Frigid Frogs are proudly supported by the Freshwater Community Bank.
NEW YORK TIMES OBITUARY FOR BERNARD “MIDGET” FARRELLY
It is not often that the death of an Australian gets coverage in the New York Times but this is what happened when one of Australia’s much admired surfing champions, Midget Farrelly, died on 7 August last, aged 72.
In an obituary published on 10 August 2016, columnist Daniel Victor, wrote that Farrelly who won a historic world championship at Manly Beach, was an outsider in the surfing world, who, in 1969, railed against drug-taking which had become ingrained in the surfing culture of the time. Farrelly editorialised in the surfing magazine, Surfing World. “Does the beach take dope; do the waves take dope; do the seagulls take dope”. “Man, if you are part of that scene, you won’t either”
A young Farrelly, aged 14, joined Freshwater Surf Club in 1958 when his family was living at South Curl Curl. In the world of surfing, it was then the age of 3-metre-long balsa boards, and “Midget” as he became known, even though he wasn’t small of stature, constructed his own balsa board and was off on a stellar career as a surfboard rider and manufacturer in this newly emerging sport.
In later years, he was the Sweep on surf boats for the Palm Beach Surf Club.
The magazine, Surfing Life, said that “he had surfed until a few weeks before his death from stomach cancer”.
WHO MAKES THE BEST COFFEE?
In Freshwater, we now have a large number of thriving coffee and café outlets. This will soon increase with the arrival of About Life (with an 85 seat mezzanine area) and the re-opening of Carlos on Albert. Good coffee relies on a good barista, so who makes the best Coffee?
TEACHERS HAVE LASTING IMPACTS
The late Tom Uren, surf lifesaver, boxer, prisoner-of-war, politician and activist, who spent his school years in Freshwater prior to 1939, always used to state that “Miss Rolfe’s words are always with me when I give a public or parliamentary speech”. Miss Rolfe was his Year 6 teacher at Harbord Public School in 1933. “She taught me how to frame a speech” said Uren who was delivering speeches into his 90’s.
It is yet another example of the lasting impacts of our teachers. To those who attended Harbord Kindergarten during her tenure, it will always be known to them as “Crump’s Academy”, after the long standing Director and community activist, Irene Crump.
Former students of St. John the Baptist School may have similar fond memories of Daphne Blake who has recently passed away aged 93.
Do you have a favourite memory of our local teachers such as John Speight, Keith Amos, Gwen Gordon or more lately Bryan O’Rourke?
TWO SUPERMARKETS FOR FRESHWATER
By early 1918, Freshwater Village will have two supermarkets. A DA lodged by Harrington Property Group, the owner of the current IGA site in Freshwater Village Plaza, heralds the forthcoming arrival of About Life, an upmarket organic supermarket with obligatory coffee shop. This company currently operates, in a similar way, at other sites in Cammeray, Lane Cove, Crows’ Nest, Bondi and Surry Hills
Friends of Freshwater has also been informed that the incoming proprietor of the 1,200sq.m retail supermarket space in the Freshwater apartment complex will be a SUPA IGA operated by the proprietors of the Cremorne IGA. This retailer is one of the best performed in the IGA network across Australia. It is unlikely to be selling liquor.
The “Freshwater” development is still at the excavation phase with the builder, Hindmarsh Construction, currently extracting sandstone to create the second level of the underground car park. It has taken months of removal of compacted beach sand to get to this point. After the basement slab is laid in late October and the groundwater storage tank established, the structural phase will begin in earnest. It is at this point that the builder hopes to catch up valuable lost time caused by the SX Projects financial collapse. During this phase, we will likely see convoys of concrete trucks agitating up and down Albert Street. This will continue until March next year, when fitting out will commence. Residents are likely to be in their apartments by October and the supermarket and two shops (one a Bakers Delight) fully operational by early 2018.
The completed SUPA IGA has provision for 100 customers at a time with underground parking, public toilets and amenities. During the DA Approval Process, Friends of Freshie raised the need for a baby changing space, and has again raised it with the builder and architects. The Village currently has poor capacity for baby-changing amenities. Hindmarsh Construction advise that it is normal to supply this provision in their construction process and it is likely that it will be provided near the Supermarket and adjacent to the main toilets.
In addition, a modification to the “Freshwater” development at 22-26 Albert Street (currently lodged with Council), seeks to strata the retail entities within the complex, and indicates that the supermarket will be geared to cater for 100 customers at any one time.
OVER 55’S PREDOMINATE IN FRESHWATER DEVELOPMENTS.
By 2018, Freshwater will have 277 more apartments occupied primarily by over 55’s.
By that time, the Kahana at 18 Marmora (16 Units – 1 beach house); the Freshwater (23 units); 36 Wyndora (9 Units); Freshwater Rise at 94-96 Soldiers Avenue (10 Units) and the Harbord Diggers New Dawn (190+) will be either at or near completion. In addition, a 17 town villa complex in McDonald Avenue on a former health facility site will also be at an advanced stage.
Some of these developments were approved by Council on the basis of SEPP 55 legislation, while others are overtly priced to attract downsizers.
It is clear that Freshwater will have a significant influx of population in the Over 55 age bracket.
TRAFFIC CALMING IN WEST FRESHWATER
Council is intending to instigate a Local Area Traffic Management Scheme for areas between Harbord Rd and Oliver Street. This will enable the installation of ‘raised thresholds” for Brighton Street, Wyndora Avenue and Soldiers Avenue, as well as a raised wombat crossing in Johnson Street adjacent to a school entrance.
Amazingly this has been in the Council pipeline since a 2007 Survey was completed.
We can now only hope that further traffic calming will also be extended to busy streets east of Oliver St.
FRESHWATER ANZAC PRECINCT REGISTERED AS A COMMUNITY WAR MEMORIAL.
The historic Soldiers Avenue of Honour and the nearby Jacka Park Wall of Remembrance, have recently been jointly registered by the State Government as a Community War Memorial. This will assist with the ability to gain support for maintenance and refurbishment of these memorials.
COME JOIN US FOR MEMBERSHIP DRINKS AND MEETING AT THE HARBORD BEACH HOTEL ON WEDNESDAY 12TH OCTOBER AT 7PM.
Friends of Freshwater will be holding its annual drinks and meeting in the lower Freshies Restaurant at the Harbord Beach Hotel. All members most welcome. THERE WILL BE A REPORT GIVEN ON ALL THE PROJECTS IN WHICH WE HAVE BEEN INVOLVED IN 2016.
IF YOU WISH TO BECOME A FRIENDS OF FRESHWATER MEMBER OR SIMPLY RENEW YOUR EXISTING MEMBERSHIP THEN YOU CAN DO IT ON THE NIGHT
As you can see, we constantly need to raise our voice as a community on a variety of issues. Join us and strengthen our voice, and yours.
2016 memberships are now open at $10 per year via a simple transfer to FOF’s account at Freshwater Community Bank (633000/138650791) or via a visit to the Branch.