Board Meeting Minutes

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Short words by Bob Ant

Hi everyone,

Today (Monday 26th) was a celebration of Jack Wightman’s life. The assembled crowd heard from his son a very moving and personal description of his life. It was good to see some old faces, members from Moruya and Batemans Bay clubs and two representatives of North Rocks in Sydney. The Rotary presence was large and thank you to members and their partners for your support. The guard of honour was a fitting tribute.

Much thanks also goes to Frank and John Doyle for collecting the masses of Rotary stuff that Jack was minding. To the florist (opp the Kinema) who made a beautiful arrangement for us.

On Sunday I was absent fro the Markets, due to another commitment, and to all that were able to help out, congratulations for a great job.

The sad news on Friday of the passing of George Barker hit hard. George was a founding member of our club and a wonderful man who gave to the community, his family and to all who knew him. George’s funeral is this Friday at the Anglican Church in Tilba Street, Narooma at 2pm.

Take care

Bob Antill 0400 104 731


Beacon 29th October 2015

George Barker

It is with a sad heart that again I have to report today, 23rd of October, that a devoted father, husband, founding member of our Club, a great friend and pillar of our community left this mortal world.

George Barker, a member of Narooma Rotary since it’s foundation in 1958, passed away in Moruya Hospital early this morning.

Our thoughts are with Anne and their family.

George Barker’s funeral will be at 2pm on Friday 30th October at the Anglican Church, Tilba Street Narooma.

Please call Bob Antill on 0400 104 731 for further information.



Riding for the Disabled

Our speaker, Suzanne Feeney from the Eurobodalla Riding for the Disabled told us about the organisation and the benefits it can bring to children.


RDA is a worldwide organization, run totally by volunteers as a not-for-profit group, in order to provide riding therapy, sport, recreation, training and safety programmes for people with disabilities. RDA is a registered charity. They help people with all kinds of disabilities, including intellectual disabilities, specific learning disorders, injuries resulting from accidents, cerebral palsy, psychiatric disorders, spinal bifida, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, thalidomide, visual and hearing impairments, autism and amputees. The only group they are unable to help are those suffering from haemophilia.

The complex movement of the horses helps to improve coordination, balance, muscular development and fitness.

Children benefit from interacting with horses, you can see the the joy of life in the look on their faces; every child should have that opportunity. Riding a horse is a chance to have fun as a family, all the medical issues forgotten. Self confidence and self esteem both increase. It’s a powerful medium for restoring self control.

Sue grew up in Melbourne and later worked in Europe. She always loved horses, and when she was working in childcare she realised she loved education and so she did a degree in psychology. She moved to Batemans Bay some eight years ago.

Our local area is characterised by a high rate of disability, coupled with a low rank on the socio-economic scale. The local branch of RDA started in October last year, they now have 35 volunteers. They recently won a grant for a wheelchair mount to make it easier to climb up onto the horses. Their goal is to look after 30 riders and they are looking to double that. They currently have 12 horses, but it can be hard to find suitable horses.

Shanna Provost Awarded Paul Harris Fellow

Shanna Provost was awarded a Paul Harris Fellow for her work in raising funds for Shelterbox at the Beatles Concert held in the Kinema back in May.  Well done Shanna, your efforts are very much appreciated by all of us.



Get Well Rachel!

Rachel is home after a stay in the Moruya Hospital – apparently she had exhausted all possibilities for entertainment there, and is glad to be home!




Beacon 22nd October 2015

Jack Wightman

It is with a heavy heart that I heard Jack Wightman had passed from this mortal life but I have peace in knowing that he will be reunited with his beloved Carolyn. Jack has been a mainstay of our club for many years. He was always a fountain of Rotary knowledge, a great lover of red wine and had a wry smile. He will be missed by all and our thoughts are with his family.

The funeral will be held on Monday afternoon 26th October at the Presbyterian Church in Marine Parade, 1pm then to the Narooma Cemetery followed by fellowship and refreshments at Club Narooma.

Farewell Major Jack

– Bob Antill

 Jack Wightman
Jack Wightman


Combined Meeting with Moruya

Some ab fab hats at the combined meeting put the Moruyans to shame. . .

Charmaine and Bob
Charmaine and Bob
Lynda, Ang, Radar and Sandra
Lynda, Ang, Radar and Sandra
Rachel, Iris, David and Frank
Rachel, Iris, David and Frank

Monica the new district governor from Canberra outlined the goals for the year.  We combined the event with hat day, and raised  $400 in a wine auction, which will go towards mental health research. A highlight was the bus trip up and back; spirits were high on the return journey with some spontaneous outbursts of singing, albeit with some disagreements on which key in which to sing.


Gnomes and Buycycle

From Enid Holmes . . .

Rotary in Canberra is alive and well, in the last month I have been helping Canberra East with the painting of the gnomes at Floriade. This is a well loved tradition, and many gnomes are sold. Most children stay and paint them there and then  (some take them home unpainted.) They are then allowed to dry and are sprayed to waterproof them. They can then be picked up and taken home, or left to go in the competition.  Some schools do this as a school project and they usually have a theme about them.

The competition gnomes are all left on display, and many people wander through just to look at the gnomes, and of course they see it is a Rotary project, and we do get asked questions about Rotary.

As I said this is run by Canberra East club, and as this is a small club they enlist the help of other clubs. Then at the end of the day, these clubs get a portion of the takings.

Canberra Rotary Club has started up a new project. It is called “Canberra Buycycle.” To buy and sell pre loved bikes. People can, sell, buy or donate bikes. The first market is to be this Sunday, at the Fitters workshop, next to the Old Bus Depot markets.  On Monday Minister  Shane Rattenbury came to open the event and wish it well. I have included some photos of this event.

Charmaine is Back !

Charmaine at Bobanaro, Timor Leste
Charmaine in East Timor

The kinder children all came to see the volunteer dentists from Australia. No tears from any of them. Some needed fillings and extractions but most children  had good teeth. Plain food, not much sugar, a good basic diet would be the reason.

Overall our trip was a great success – we saw over 800 people mainly children and of course adults after school times with long-standing tooth aches. We did over 1000 various treatments.

There were two dentists in the first week and three dentists in the second week. We had no days off and worked every day or we were travelling to villages. The most remote town was Bobanaro eight and a half hours drive from Dilli.

This is a joint NGO project run with Carmelite Nuns, Rotary and Lions and it has been going for ten years.

Short Words from Bob Antill

Today Radar wanted to go on a push bike ride so we rode to Tilba to organise his work experience with Orit. It was a long ride taking in the scenic route (via Ridge Road) but we made it…. my legs are jelly but I did give him 46 years and 10 gears head start and we made it home!!!!!!!

This weeks guest speaker is from RDA and should be of enormous insight for us all.

This Sunday’s market will see me missing in action, I’ll be photographing a wedding in Sydney over the weekend. I hope it will be a great one.

Radar will be at the district conference thanks to Lynda, Enid and Colin.

Have a great week

Crazy Weather

Gosh, it was 38 degrees the other day – great weather for cycling.  And just a week or two earlier it was snowing

Radar cycling at Central Tilba
Snow snapped by Bob on Brown Mountain






Beacon 15th October 2015

short note by bob ant

This week we are off on an adventure to Moruya on Wednesday evening. I will send out a bus time table for everyone tonight when numbers are known, let Anthony know today please (Monday 12th Oct).
Last week our guest speaker was author Peter Smith. This night could not have been possible without the enthusiasm of Laurelle to organise, publicise and find such an interesting speaker. Thank you Laurelle.

Yesterday I was able to get Radar out onto the water to look at oyster farming in the inlet. My thanks to Charles for explaining the process to Radar.

Our thoughts are with Michael and Donna as they take their last visit to Michael’s sister in WA.

On the 12th of November we are meeting at the Kinema for End Polio fundraiser and the premiere of the new James Bond Movie, a great movie and should be a great night, thank you to Chris for organising it and for John and Janette for their support.

Have a great week



The Clarke Gang – Murderous Thugs or Larrikins?

Peter Smith on the Clarke Gang

The Clarke gang was arguably one of the most troublesome of all the bush ranging gangs, yet most people haven’t heard of them.

Why? Author Peter Smith has dealt expertly with this and many other interesting issues in his new book, The Clarke Gang – Outlawed, Outcast and Forgotten.

Peter Smith holding a gun owned by a member of the Clarke Gang
Peter Smith holding a gun owned by a member of the Clarke Gang

Peter summarised some of the key points at last Thursday night’s meeting.

With roots in the unrest caused by the colonial system, the bushrangers initially had a lot of community support as they were seen to be active against the system.  Plus, the “bad guys” were better horsemen and better at bush survival, and often embarrassed the authorities who were trying to catch them, all of which went down well with the locals.

In addition, the police force didn’t exist as such – instead there were disparate systems, eg the town constables were under the control of the magistrates. Eventually the police force as we know it today was created – the NSW police force, with a mandate to wage war against the villains.

One of the worst acts by the bushrangers against the police was near Braidwood when four policemen were murdered.  This, together with other changes saw the bushrangers lose some of their community support.  In 1855 the Felons Act came into being, at which point bushrangers lost all rights, they could be shot on sight, giving them the same status as mad dogs.  Rewards were posted; four and five thousand pounds – a significant amount of money in those times.

So they became outcasts.

The Clark Gang, when they were finally caught, had a one day trial, and were then hanged.

“You young men have now received the last sentence of the law.

“You will pass from the world as felons, convicts, bushrangers and I very much fear, murderers.”.

Someone organised a petition protesting against their execution but it only raised eighty-five signatures, and so ended the lives of the members of the Clarke Gang

A highlight of the talk was when Peter reached into his bag and produced a revolver, number 170, owned by Pat O’Connell, a member of the gang.  He waved it about much to the consternation of those sitting close!

An interesting speaker, Peter kept the large audience of Rotarians and visitors hanging on his every word.

News from the North

Ted Bladwell sends his regards. These days Ted lives where the weather is a bit warmer, but offered the opinion that he regrets leaving. Ted has a stack of old newsletters – please send them, Ted! If any other members or ex-members have copies, please send them to Frank so he can plug the gaps.

News from Overseas

via John Rungen

Rotary and “ONE”, an international advocacy organization, joined other partners in downtown Chicago on 24 September to demonstrate a commitment to ending extreme poverty and inequality and to promoting action on climate change on the eve of the United Nations launch of its Sustainable Development Goals.

Their ambitious goals constitute a road map for finding solutions to the world’s most pressing problems, and dovetail with Rotary members’ work to create positive change in their communities and around the world. As dusk fell over Chicago, participants in the Under One Sky event held up blue lights transforming the plaza where they were gathered into a field of fireflies to #LightTheWay to a more just world.

“This is a great opportunity for people to network and join an event where we are all focused on creating a better world” said Cheryl McIntyre, president of the Rotary Club of Chicago.


Beacon 8th October 2015

2015-10-04 - Radar playing Erhu
The Erhu, played for us by Radar

The Erhu  is a two-stringed bowed instrument , sometimes known in the West as the “Chinese violin” or a “Chinese two-stringed fiddle”.  Radar, our Rotary exchange student gave us a masterful rendition.One could easily imagine the Mongolian horses galloping across the Steppes.

Peter has returned from his travels abroad, but unfortunately his camera failed to return with him.  It is still languishing in the lost property section of DB at the Hamburg Bahnhof.  I will not attempt to retell the Pythonesque series of events involving dodgy international transactions, delivery of dangerous goods and a helpful native called Helga, you need to hear these things first hand, so if you did not attend the meeting last Thursday – make sure you interrogate Peter next time you see him.

Michael is in training to walk across the planet.  He has a madcap scheme to walk from Perth to the South Pole next year to raise money for his school building project in Africa – more info on that in due course.



A short note note by bob ant.

Well we survived the last great Southern Blues Festival.  Thank you one and all for your contribution to making this a great boost to our fundraising efforts. We made over $5,000 gross and I feel it should be more than $3,000 net.

This will boost our fundraising and help toward a good local cause. This is why we are in Rotary, service to the community and hopefully having some fun on the way.

Again thank you all for your efforts, see you on Thursday night …. bring ten friends !!

Cheers – Bob

Archived newsletters

Bob has been rummaging in the dark recesses of his computer and found some old copies of the Beacon, which have now been organised and uploaded to the website.  To find them, click on News, scroll to the bottom, click on Older Posts and again scroll to the bottom.

Why is it useful to have all the old newsletters available?

Well lets assume you remember that Mr Armstrong paid a visit, but would like to know when that was. You could enter this into the Google search box:


and find that he paid a visit on 3rd July 2014.   The “site” bit just tells Google to restrict results to just those for our website. Too easy!

BUT there are significant gaps – prior to 2009 and between 2011-07-07 and 2014-06-06.   If anyone has copies of the newsletter from this period, please send them to me, or put them on a USB stick.  If you only have paper copies,  I will scan them.

Cheers – Frank