Bridge bid to bring B-triples to Corowa

B-triples could access Corowa Saleyards if bridge upgrades are approved in the shire. Picture: DAVID THORPEB-TRIPLES and road trains could become commonplace enroute to Corowa Saleyards if essential bridge upgrades are approved.

Corowa mayor Fred Longmire said the council would seek state government cash to upgrade bridges over Wangamong Creek on the Riverina Highway and Hopefield Road.

The roads are key stock routes into Corowa and improvements to those roads could make the town’s beleaguered saleyards more appealing to farmers.

The yards themselves have been repeatedly overlooked for funding for an upgrade.

The shire will apply for funding to assess the suitability of upgrades to both bridges as part of the NSW government’s “fixing country roads — local roads and bridges” program.

Cr Longmire said a study had been completed by NSW Roads and Maritime Services about 18 months ago, referring to the opportunity for B-triples in the region.

“The curtailing factor is the railway crossing and bridge on the Riverina Highway,” he said.

“Unless that’s made bigger and better, it doesn’t allow the opportunity for that to happen.”

It was a similar situation on Hopefield Road, he said, where upgrades in recent times had improved the road, but the bridge was still unable to cope with heavier vehicles.

Albury MP Greg Aplin said the fixing country roads program provided $37.5million for regional and rural NSW councils to share for road projects, particularly those aimed at “connecting our towns and unlocking our economic potential”.

“It targets roads and bridges in local communities to make sure our transport and freight network supports regional producers, growers and business,” he said.

He encouraged councils in his Albury electorate to apply.

Cr Longmire said by that definition, he was “a bit encouraged” on Corowa’s prospects for funding.

“We’d fit right in like a glove,” he said.

Greater Hume mayor Heather Wilton said her council would also seek funding — to improve Jingellic Road at Yararra Gap, a “quite dangerous, winding, steep road”.

Mrs Wilton said Mr Aplin had seen the road and agreed it was in need of work.

“We’ve got some very well-developed plans and are pretty well ready to go as soon as we get some money,” she said.

The government said projects with well-advanced planning and environmental approvals would get priority in the hope construction could start next year.

Council submissions close on August 4.

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Champion cyclist Anna Meares’ steely gaze earns Archibald Prize call for Bright artist

Bright’s Phillip Barnes is an Archibald Prize finalist with this portrait of cyclist Anna Meares.BRIGHT artist Phillip Barnes has been announced as a finalist in the Archibald Prize with his pop art portrait of Australian cyclist Anna Meares.

But Border artist Marijana van Zanten’s painting of Indi MP Cathy McGowan missed out.

“I’m disappointed because I had a fabulous subject and a great painting,” van Zanten said.

Van Zanten will keep “knocking on the Archibald door” and said residents had not seen the last of her painting, although her lips were sealed yesterday over its future plans.

Born in Melbourne, Barnes works from a studio in the Victorian Alps.

He has had portraits in exhibitions throughout Australia.

Besides his commissioned works, he has completed more than 500 portraits for charity.

The Archibald entry, one of three completed for the cycling safety charity Amy Gillett Foundation, shows a close-up of Meares in full concentration as she awaits the starter’s gun.

Meares’ determination and drive saw her fight back from a life-threatening crash in 2008 to take the world and Olympic titles.

“The transformation that comes over her when she slips on her race helmet is startling, if not intimidating,” Barnes said in his entry.

“That transformation is the central theme of the portrait.

“Almost assaulted by her stare, the viewer is hopefully transfixed long enough to allow the eye to wander back through the layers into Anna’s past, where some of these references to life’s crossroads are hidden.”

His portrait was selected as one of 40 finalists from a field of almost 900 entries.

It is the second time Barnes has been selected as a finalist.

His portrait of Red Symons was selected in 2008.

The winner will be announced next Friday, with the exhibition to go on display from July 19 to September 28 at the Art Gallery of NSW.

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V/Line group calls for express to Melbourne

ESTABLISHING a limited express V/Line passenger timetable once a day between Albury and Melbourne was a high priority for residents at last night’s rail forum.

Convenor and Albury’s V/Line customer reference group representative Bill Traill said residents were keen to establish a timetable providing a 2¾-hour journey from Albury to Southern Cross Station.

Mr Traill said it would investigate the number of stops required for a limited express service once a day.

“We are not talking about a complete express but it would cut out three or four smaller stations,” he said.

“There’s definitely strong support for a once a day express service.”

Mr Traill said when he first arrived on the Border in 1985 there was a limited express in the middle of the day.

“It was a heavily booked train because it was a popular service,” he said.

“It got to Melbourne on the discredited old track in three hours and 20 minutes from Albury.”

A motion has been compiled for the V/Line customer reference group including establishing a limited express service, getting a time frame for the track and a signalling upgrade to accommodate speeds up to 160km/h, as well as investigating a modified VLocity train.

About 30 residents attended the meeting at Albury Railway Station, including Albury councillor Ross Jackson, Labor candidate for Benambra Jennifer Podesta and former Albury-Wodonga Devel- opment Corporation chairman Ron Dennis.

One couple travelled from the King Valley.

Albury’s Leonie O’Hai- re had a gripe about the trains’ cleanliness.

“It’s an embarrassment to think tourists ride on our trains and can’t even see out the windows,” she said.

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We’ve got 19-time Albury mayor Alfred Waugh’s crutches

Patricia Young shows the crutches and a portrait of Alfred Waugh. Picture: DYLAN ROBINSONWOODEN crutches used by Alfred Waugh when he met royalty, governors-general and fellow Albury citizens have come home to his city.

A collection of memorabilia, from the man who served 19 mayoral terms, was presented to Albury Library Museum yesterday.

Alfred and Ellen Waugh were butchers who became famous across the world as leaders of the city that saved the Uiver KLM airliner in 1934.

They carefully kept items, ranging from pictures to the programs for functions they attended, as well as gifts they received in The Netherlands recognising Albury’s role in saving the Uiver.

Solicitor Noel Jackling, who helped secure the Waugh collection for Albury, said the couple was childless and, after Mrs Waugh died in 1956, their possessions passed to relatives at Benalla and Wangaratta.

We’ve got 19-time Albury mayor Alfred Waugh’s crutches Alfred Waugh

The Duke and Duchess of York, later King George VI and Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, at Albury station with Mayor Alf Alfred Waugh and his wife Ellen on their way to open Federal Parliament in Canberrra, 1927. Picture: ALBURY HISTORICAL SOCIETY

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Help offered in foster care

WHEN Jill De-Ath and her husband sought to foster a child in 1964 they had a very different experience than they would now.

There was no formal care agreement, no training and no police checks.

Mrs De-Ath is now the western regional co-ordinator of Connecting Carers NSW and she shared her story yesterday at the launch of Challenge Children’s Services in Albury.

Challenge Albury is the region’s second private-sector out-of-home care provider and is already working with 35 children and their carers.

General manager Stephen Doley said demand for carers outweighed supply but Challenge would keep caseloads at a manageable level.

Challenge will help to find placements for children in need but, equally important, it will help their carers and ensure the experience is beneficial on both sides.

Challenge has utilised its official launch to appeal to those who may have an interest in becoming foster carers highlighting the need for those who provide children a home and help them to a better future.

For those who have ever thought about taking this step, it’s time to turn that thought into a reality.

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