Narooma Rotary Beacon 25 November 2021

Andrew’s Thoughts

President Andrew Lawson with Merivale Regional Manager Jenn Black at last Thursday’s Business Breakfast.

Last Thursday’s Business Breakfast at the Surf Club attracted lots of interest and was a great success, thanks to our charming and astute guest speaker Jenn Black, Merivale’s Regional Manager. Jenn gave a frank and interesting talk, answered lots of questions from local business people. We had about 30 guests, including Rotarians. A major attraction at these breakfasts is being able to catch up with other business people in town and networking. We will have a break in December and January and resume on Thursday 17 February when Paul West will be our guest speaker.

Our new pamphlets and flyers have now been printed and had their first public outing at last week’s Business Breakfast. They are available for members to hand out whenever. See Laurelle if you would like some. We will have them available for guests at future Rotary meetings.

I am not sure at this stage if I will be at this week’s meeting; bit knocked around after a fall earlier in the week, but I hope so. If not, Laurelle will chair the meeting which will feature Dr Michael Holland which should be a particularly interesting meeting.

This Sunday is of course our markets, the first since June, which will feature our Summer Safety Expo. Many thanks to Chris for organising that. We need all hands on deck!

As ever, onwards and upwards mes amis!


Local Obstetrician and Gynaecologist Dr Michael Holland will speak this Thursday about the campaign for the new Eurobodalla Regional Hospital at Moruya and the battle to have the NSW Government fund it as a Level 4 offering more servicesm rather than a Level 3 hospital. Both Batemans Bay and Moruya Hospitals are Level 3.

Just this week Dr Holland and GP Obstetrician Dr Lisa Hyde from Moruya Hospital, resigned from the Southern NSW Local Health District, their resignations effective from February 2022. Dr Holland has been the VMO Obstetrician and Gynaecologist at Moruya Hospital for 19 years, providing services for women and their families from Milton-Ulladulla to Eden. The reasons for their resignations relate to their relationship with NSW Health. No doubt we will hear more on Thursday night

Dr Holland’s visit to us has been postponed a couple of times due to Covid. We will have a good number of partners, friends and relatives to hear what he has to say.

The Week that Was

At last week’s Business Breakfast, Merivale Regional Manager Jenn Black deftly dealt with ‘Narooma Rumours’ around Merivale’s current and planned operations in Narooma. She said “Justin [Hemmes] absolutely loves this place”, a feeling she obviously shares, and he has no intention of taking away from the local integrity. She said at that time Merivale had not settled or exchanged on any other properties in Narooma.

Plans include the introduction of a Merivale brand restaurant at the Whale in December and gradual renovation of accommodation in the first part of 2022, and plans to eventually open up the back of The Inlet. They are delighted with the response they are getting at the Quarterdeck.

Jenn said Merivale currently employs 45 locals in Narooma with the only Sydney ‘imports’ a small team of managers to establish the venues with the Merivale quality brand and ‘culture’. All Narooma staff will get the same training and opportunities as all Merivale staff, adding career opportunities within Merivale “are second to none”. She they would like to open seven days a week but, like all hospitality venues along the coast, they struggle to find staff with a key issue the lack of affordable accommodation for staff.

Merivale’s aim in all their venues is “attention to detail” and “to provide great food, great service and a great vibe”. She said the key to achieving that is to treat their staff well and with respect.

Jenn said Merivale sees great opportunities ahead for all businesses in the local area to work together, possibly partnering up with other businesses and organisations to achieve sustainable year-round tourism.

Out and About

From Moruya Rotary Club

Last Week Moruya Rotarians presented the Eurobodalla Show Society with a cheque for $1,970.00, proceeds from the Club’s Melbourne Cup luncheon at the Jockey Club.

The Society’s treasurer Lindsey Boyton gave an outline of the Society’s interesting history, remembering this is the Show Society for the Narooma area as well.  It began life as the Moruya Agricultural and Pastoral Society in 1872. In the 150 years since then it has mounted 144 shows — fires, floods, wars and Covid being responsible for missed years. For about 40 years the show was held beside the river bank where the Bowling Club now is, moving to the present site in 1915 where it now has a grandstand, display sheds and cattle yards The sesquicentennial show is on 22/23 January. Horse events will extend over four days and include showjumping, hacks and ponies. The Eurobodalla Show Society flourishes at a time when so many similar events in country towns have folded thanks; its continued success is due to the enthusiasm, organization and leadership of the Society’s committee and teams.

From Bega Rotary

Bega Club hopes to hold its wonderful Book Fair again early in the New Year. The date is still to be announced. In the meantime, they’ve suspended the drop-off and collection of books because they have run out of storage space. It is going to be a monster book fair when they can finally hold it!


There will not be a meeting next Thursday, being the first Thursday in the month.