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Scotland Island - Western Shores - Mackeral Beach

- May 2007 -

Newsletter for Offshore Residents of Pittwater, Australia  Volume 9, Issue 225 May 2007     


The offshore associations (SIRA and WPCA) welcome Mr Rob Stokes as member for Pittwater in the NSW state parliament. Rob visited the offshore community many times in the lead up to the recent election. He offered to help with a number of vexatious issues that have troubled us in recent years - particularly the matters of the car park and the problem of the high levels of tax that waterfront, water access only, residents are now paying.

We wish him well and will support him in his efforts to right these inequities with the NSW government.

  • History Corner
  • SIRA elects new Committee
  • Secrets of the Deep
  • Having Trouble listening to AM Radio
  • Are you on the island at lunch time?
  • Wanted - Pittwater Recipes 2005 Edition!
  • Artstart Grants on Offer
  • Island Thinking
  • Yoga Classes on Scotland Island
  • Important message from Pittwater Council & NSW Maritime
  • Lock up your sparkles Ladies
  • Fireman's Ball another Huge Success
  • Christmas in July
  • Local Guide
  • Archived Newsletters
  • Your Subscription Information
  • History Corner

    Back in the early 1880s, George Medlock acquired a selection of land near the end of McCarrs Creek and built a small timber cottage on it. Because of its isolation, with no method of access except by water, it was a very lonely place and his was a lonely life, but he managed to make a living by growing vegetables and supplying them to local residents closer to Church Point. Eventually, he took a wife and later they had a little daughter named Harriet who used to attend the first Pittwater school. She was remembered for wearing a hat trimmed with fur and trailing ribbon.

    Features of the Medlock farm were two immense fig trees which bore tremendous crops. A neighbour remembered spending many pleasant hours filling baskets with luscious, ripe, purple figs. That neighbour was almost certainly David Wilson Walker who purchased 40 acres near Medlock in July, 1885. Mr. Walker was once a fireman on coastal vessels and he laboured long and hard to make the most of his new acquisition. Lawns of buffalo grass, terraces and fruit trees testified to the immense amount of work he put in to developing the comfort and production of his property. There was a jetty of sandstone blocks used as a mooring place for his centre-board boat and a winding path led up to a flat lawn area in front of his weatherboard cottage which had a shingled roof and a quaint stone fireplace and chimney.

    There Mr. Walker lived in splendid isolation. He kept bees and used hives made out of gin cases and the honey was put into kerosene tins. His orange trees rendered prolific crops and he was proud of his large Royal George peaches. He also grew mandarins and his passion-fruit vines climbed an old Port Jackson fig tree. On a regular day he used to sail up to Church Point to meet the butcher’s and baker’s carts for supplies. For financial hardship reasons, his land was transferred to E.A. Macpherson in 1886. Walker stayed on until 1896 when his cottage was found deserted and he disappeared without trace.

    Leicester Warburton

    NEXT MONTH : The tragedy of a fire.

    SIRA elects new Committee

    Atthe Annual General Meeting of the Scotland Island Residents Assoc istion, held last Sunday afternoon, a new committe was elected to manage the affairs of one of the most powerful resident's groups in NSW. THe meeting thanked the outgoing committe for their hard work and for handing on the task of managing the affairs of Scotland Island in good financial shape.

    The new president of SIRA is Bill Gye, well known to most offshore residents. His Vice Presidents are Shar Jones and Lisa Macdonald. A full complement was elected to the committee and complete details will appear in the next monthly PON.


    Secrets of the Deep

    The sun gleamed on the water
    On that pearler of a day
    And the sweat was streamin’ off me
    It was time for me to play

    So I climbed into my cozzie
    And got ready for my swim
    Then I walked down to the water
    With a figure far from trim

    As I strolled along the jetty
    And considered where to dive
    I had that glowing feeling
    It was good to be alive

    So I picked the deepest water
    Then hit it with a splash
    And went right down in greenish gloom
    Between a rocky gash

    I dunno how far down I went
    Quite difficult to measure
    And saw a shape; thought ”Bugger me!
    I think I’ve found the treasure!”

    It felt like metal. It was square
    I couldn’t move it – just by me
    The neighbours’ help could lift it
    So that everyone could see

    Up I went to get young Steve
    His dad called Rupert, too
    His mum, our friendly Heather
    Cried “The treasure! Yes, I knew!”

    So the boys put on their flippers

    And we all three dived like seals
    And we found the box and grabbed it
    Was it like a treasure feels?


    And we groaned and strained our muscles
    Till the “chest” broke into air
    It wasn’t filled with golden coins
    Just an old ‘fridge lying there!

    :- Leicester Warburton


    Having Trouble listening to AM Radio?


    Have you started to experience radio interference, or might you have some idea of where it is coming from?

    I am an avid ABC Radio National listener (576 AM) and until February I had a good signal at my house on top of Scotland Island (north-east side). Unfortunately, since the end of February I have been suffering from terrible interference. The interference is not constant: sometimes it goes away altogether and other times it varies in strength. It basically sounds like a background warbling sound that varies in pitch and volume: sometimes it sounds like an engine idling and sometimes it is high-pitched, rather like the insect noise we enjoy in the summer.

     I am pursuing the matter with ACMA (Australian Communications and Media Authority) who are responsible for such matters. They tell me that it will cost at least $85 to send out a technician to look into the matter, but if neighbours are experiencing the same problem the matter can be investigated for free.

     If you are experiencing similar problems, please let me know. If we can present this matter to ACMA as a neighbourhood (rather than individual) problem then we can get it investigated without any cost to ourselves.

     Alternatively, if you have any idea of what might be causing the interference, either because you are electronically minded or started using some new equipment in late February please let me know. It may well be that the problem can easily be resolved to everyone's satisfaction. 

    Please e-mail me at roybaker99@yahoo.com or phone on 9999 6891.

    Are you on the island at lunch time?

    Love kids? Want to earn a little cash?

    The kindy needs people to help give the staff a break at lunch time.
    Come down on Tues / Wed / Thurs for two hours between 11am and 2 pm and earn $34.
    If you have kids in the kindy this can be offset against your kindy fees.
    Call the kindy on 9979 7856 - leave a message with your details if the staff are busy.

    Many thanks Anne Palmer

    Wanted - Pittwater Recipes 2005 Edition!

    Hi there. I would like to send out a request to the community for a 2005 edition of the cookery "Pittwater recipes from the Islands and the Bays!" , published in November 2004. If anyone out there has one they do not need any longer and wouldn't mind passing on, I would love to purchase it. My dear neighbour who is from the island shared her copy with me to show to my in-laws and my mother- n- law has lost it!

    I would very much like to replace it for my neighbour, Heather, as it means a lot to her! Heather will be back to Australia in a week and a half so she could pick it up or it could be sent out and I am more than happy to pay for shipping. A kind lady, Rosemary, suggested that I send out a message to the community. I hope this works!
    Thank you, kindly, Julie Meyer  jmeyer@wiredmeyer.com  (650) 321- 5691

    Artstart Grants on Offer

    Community-based organisations, local government authorities and non-profit organisations wishing to co-ordinate skill development projects, or workshops aimed at developing the creative arts skills of young people aged 12-24 years, are invited to apply for a grant as part of the ArtStart Youth Arts and Skills Program.

    A grant of $2,500 is available to one group within each of the 11 local government areas within the Sydney Metropolitan North area. These are Hornsby, Hunters Hill, Ku-Ring-Gai, Lane Cove, Manly, Mosman, North Sydney, Pittwater, Ryde, Warringah and Willoughby.

    ArtStart is an initiative of the NSW Government and is managed by TAFE NSW and the General Education Curriculum Centre. It was established in 1991 as a strategic response to evidence showing that participation in art and cultural activities is an effective way of engaging young people in education and training.

    The ArtStart program provides an opportunity for community groups to provide young people with the opportunity to participate in creative arts and cultural activities and develop their skills, as well as providing young people with the opportunity to perform and exhibit their work during a two-week festival held every year.

    The 2005 round of grants saw more than 7,500 young people across New South Wales participate directly in the 200+ projects and 180+ events conducted as part of ArtStart 2005. Events and projects ranged from exhibitions, concerts, film festivals and radio broadcasts, as well as creative skill development workshops and classes.

    Applications for the Sydney Metropolitan North ArtStart grants are being co-ordinated by Willoughby City Council. Enquiries: 9777 7986, or visit www.artstart.com.au or www.willoughby.nsw.gov.au

    Island Thinking

    Special Event Catherine, Queen of Scotland Island (Combined Island Thinking/SIRA event)
    Venue: Scotland Island Community Hall.
    Date: Saturday May 19th
    Time: 6.30 for a 7pm start (Bob requested an early start)

    A delightful mainlander, Bob Waterer, will enlighten us about his family history - which is also Scotland Island’s history. He particularly asked if he could share his knowledge with Scotland Islanders (and other non-mainlanders) while he is still able – he is not so young any more.

    Bob gave a talk last year for the Manly, Warringah and Pittwater Historical Society. Here is the write-up on that talk, about his family history, with a special focus on his great-grandmother, Catherine Benns, the ‘Queen of Scotland Island’.

    “Catherine was born at Marra Marra Creek in 1838, the daughter of John Ferdinand Lewis and Sarah Wallace, an Aboriginal woman. In 1862 she gave birth to an illegitimate daughter Emily, whose father was Eugene Stevens, a water policeman. Afterwards Catherine married Joseph Benns and went to live on Scotland Island
    where she was eventually accorded her regal title. In 1887 Emily married George Godbold and it was their daughter Harriet who, in 1913, married Albert Waterer and afterwards had five children, the youngest of whom, Bob, was our guest speaker.
    Although Bob had been researching his family tree for some years, it was only recently that the last pieces of the jigsaw puzzle had fallen into place. He had a wealth of information to impart, many original documents to show, and his talk was a real lesson in the difficulties and rewards of family history research” (POLYHISTOR, the Newsletter of the Manly, Warringah & Pittwater Historical Society Inc., October 2006).

    Everyone Welcome! Please pass the word – this is a unique opportunity to hear about our amazing heritage.
    Bob is going to give out notes so please RSVP to jenni.cover@urnet.com.au to ensure your set of notes - and a seat.

    Please bring a contribution for supper (food, wine etc.), and a contribution for Bob’s water-taxi and hire of the hall.
    For more information: jenni.cover@urnet.com.au or 0409 560008

    Yoga Classes on Scotland Island

    Experience the difference yoga can make to your body, mind and spirit. Common benefits attributed to regular yoga practice includes improved:

    Cardiovascular System
    Levels Of Relaxation
    And Feeling Better About Yourself And The World!!!
    Hatha Yoga classes taught by Vivien include traditional yoga moves; breathing techniques; relaxation and meditation

    Classes designed to suit adult beginners of any level of fitness
    Classes to be held:
    Tuesday 8.45am – 10.15am
    Catherine Park (Community Hall if Wet Weather) Scotland Island
    (Please Bring Mats & Blankets)
    $130.00 Pre-Paid 8 Week Term 1 May; 8 May; 15 May; 22 May; 29 May; 5 June; 12 June; 19 June
    Casual Welcome ($20.00 per class)

    Please Phone Vivien To Book &/or Register Interest (or just arrive!)

    Vivien Mclean has a background in community services; trained in dance; BA Leisure Management (major: Human Movement); Diploma in Yoga; Certificate Yoga Therapy and is registered with the Yoga Teacher Ass Australia (YTAA). Contact for further information:
    Vivien McLean: Tel: 9940 0228 Mobil: 0423 300 826 email: Vivien.mclean@three.com.au and www.ntpages.com.au/therapist/1832

    Important message from Pittwater Council & NSW Maritime

    Could you please advise the residents through your news letters or meetings that residents with tinnies the area between the Pontoon and the Old Wharf at Church Point is a 'NO TIE UP' area. This is for safety and NSW Maritime have requested I ask you to inform the residents.

    John Berry
    Senior Officer, Building Services
    Phone: (02) 9970 1370

    Lock up your sparkles Ladies


    Taken from a house in Little Lovett Bay recently:

    * 2 x delicate short pearl necklaces of the old-fashioned variety with knots between each pearl. One had a blue stone and gold safety clasp.
    * a pearl ring set above a circle of small diamonds on a thing gold band
    * a thick gold wedding band with "Karel "written inside it and the year of their wedding – 1922 I think

    These were presents from my mum who died last year, especially the pearl ring which Mum gave to me when I was made school captain of Pittwater High (a very long time ago). Also stolen was my grandmother’s wedding band which is the only thing I have left of her.

    Additionally some costume jewellery that resembled black pearls were taken.
    One a heavy black pearl necklace with the “pearls” just under 1cm wide and of medium length and a groovy black pearl bracelet on black wire about 2 inches wide. Other pieces of fun costume jewellery were also taken but these had fun sentimental value only.

    May I ask that you check your precious jewellery. The motive appears to have been for something that sparkles or maybe something of value?
    Strangely the thief was very selective and thorough in going through drawers and handbags but didn't take any cash, just jewellery.

    I don’t know what to say – this just doesn’t happen in our community.

    If anyone can help or has had similar experiences, please notify the police and I feel we ought to be looking out for each other.

    Thanks and apologies for being the bearer of this news. Tanya – 0411 113 317


    Fireman's Ball another Huge Success

    The Scotland Island RFB would like to thank everyone who came to the Fireman's Ball and helped make it such a fun and successful night. In particular, our thanks go to the following organisations who donated goods & services to the evening:
    • Miss Jane Design for the design & printing of the tickets
    • Lisa Atkins for her time in preparing the delicious food
    • Woolworths Mona Vale for the flowers
    • Joe & Mary at the Pasadena for the major door prize
    • June Lahm for the second door prize

    Christmas in July

    Put it in your diary now. The Scotland Island RFB will be holding our famous Christmas in July dinner on Saturday, 28 July 2007, at the Fire Station. More details will be available closer to the event.

    The local guide

    What's On in Pittwater - Self Editing Event Diary Click Here  
    Scotland Island Traders - On-line shopping from your computer, through your door on Scotland Island. Contact Graeme on 0419 460 331 or click here for full details  
    Buy and Sell: Pittwater Trading Online or visit http://www.pittwatertradingonline.com.au  
    Local Real Estate Agents:  
    Bothammottl Real Estate L.J.Hooker Mona Vale
    PMC Hill (subscribe to their newsletter here) Pittwater Real Estate
    Government Organisations:
    Local Pittwater Council, or email them at pittwater_council@pittwater.nsw.gov.au  or by clicking here.
    Federal: Bronwyn Bishop, Member for Mackellar by clicking here or Bronwyn.Bishop.MP@aph.gov.au
    State: Alex McTaggart, Member for Pittwater, at pittwater@parliament.nsw.gov.au or by clicking here
    Local Transport: Scotland Island Community Vehicle: Info: click here. Phone 0404 103 700 Church Point Ferries (0408 296 997)  Manly Warringah Cabs (02 9972 5600) Palm Beach Cruises (02 9997 4815) Pink Water Taxi (0428 238 190)
    Bed & Breakfast: Scotland Island Lodge: or http://www.scotlandislandlodge.com.au (02 9979 3301)
    Yacht Clubs Woody Point Yacht Club  or http://www.wpyc.com.au 
    Short Term Holiday Accommodation: Pittpoint Cottage:  (02 9997 8382) Wiringulla Retreat (02 9971 8375) or here
      Treetops on Towlers Bay' (02 9332 2611) info@walkabouttours.com.au
    Local Pittwater Studies Website: http://www.pittlink.net/ls
    West Pittwater Community Association Minutes: http://www.scotlandisland.org.au/wpca.htm

    Emergency Contact Numbers

    • NSW Police: 000, Police Assistance Line: 13 1444, general information 9281 0000
    • Broken Bay Water Police 9979 4944 or 0412 162 093
    • NSW Fire Service: 000, general information 9265 2999
    • NSW Ambulance Service: 000, general information 9320 7777
    • Rural Fire Service: 000, general information 9450 3000
    • State Emergency Service, Warringah/Pittwater SES: 9486 3399
    • National Parks & Wildlife Service: 000, general information 9457 9322
    • Dept of Community Services: general information 9977 6011
    • Sydney Water: 132 090
    • Energy Australia: 131 388, (ah) 131 909

    Membership of SIRA, Emergency Scotland Island Water Contacts and Application for Water + Guidelines for water, in one document: click here for information (while online)

    Airlines, Buses and Railways

    Sydney Airport: Arrivals and Departures Qantas Information                    Jetstar Information Virgin Blue Information
    Sydney Buses Information.  Sydney Ferries Information City Rail Timetables & Information. Country Link Rail Timetable


    Join SIRA You can now join the Scotland Island Residents Association by clicking here. Please print the page and return the completed form to SIRA at this address: The Treasurer, SIRA, PO Box 70, Church Point 2105. Please NO CASH. Contact SIRA at sirapittwater@hotmail.com Join WPCA

    To join the Western Pittwater Community Association, contact Michael Wiener at m2wiener@bigpond.net.au

    Archived Newsletters A complete set of past electronic newsletters since May 2000 can be found and read at https://www.ymlp.com/pubarchive.php?sira or by clicking here or by visiting the Mona Vale Library. The Island website is at www.scotlandisland.org.au


    If you would like to contribute to this newsletter it's easy!. Send an e-mail to the editor by clicking here. Type your short contribution (100 words would be fine) and assuming it is of general interest to the community, does not include matter of a political nature and is not offensive to your neighbours, it will appear next month.


    To get on and off this newsletter, click here or got to: http://www.scotlandisland.org.au/signup . To change your address, click the 'modify' link at the bottom of this newsletter.

    The views expressed in this newsletter are not necessarily the views of the Scotland Island Residents Association (SIRA), or any of the associated Pittwater Offshore Resident's Committees

    Newsletter Design:Paul Purvis [0403-442-764]