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Scotland Island - Western Shores - Mackeral Beach
September 7, 2010
Notices for Offshore Residents of Pittwater, Australia

Island Vegetation Collection

Festival Day is on Sunday, so please place vegetation out with visual impact in mind - I am sure this will be appreciated by the Festival organizers!

Make sure you read collection guidelines before putting your material out!  This is an ideal time to reduce the fuel load on your property prior to the fire season.

Please put your material out as described below, more detailed in attached brochure and the Pittwater Offshore Directory – BY SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 12

    * A maximum of 2 cubic metres of vegetation for each household
    * Leaf litter, grass clippings and prunings TO BE PLACED IN HARD SIDED CONTAINERS
    * Branches to be no longer than 1.2m and BUNDLED AND TIED TOGETHER WITH TWINE
    * No plastic, hessian or nylon bagsflyer
    * No cardboard, foam or polystyrene boxes
    * No soil or untied bundles

Any material not complying with collection guidelines will be left on the road side for residents to arrange private collection.

Click the image to load the flyer

Lifejacket reforms for NSW waterways
Lifejacket laws are changing in New South Wales on 1 November 2010.

The new rules for recreational boating to improve safety and reduce deaths from drowning were unveiled in July by NSW Ports and Waterways Minister, Paul McLeay.

Mr McLeay said a NSW Maritime lifejacket discussion paper proposing changes had touched a nerve in the boating community, with a record 3,615 responses.

“There was overwhelming support for the proposals. I’d like to thank boating organisations and the maritime industry for driving these reforms, and for boaters in general for taking the time to make a submission.
“A lifejacket can’t save your life unless you’re wearing it, and so we’re changing the rules to ensure that in times of heightened risk it’s now essential rather than optional.

“We want boating to be fun so we haven’t said a lifejacket has to be worn at all times. Instead, we’ve worked with boaters to identify the higher risk boating activities where lifejackets will now be required.”

The new rules for wearing lifejackets include:
By children less than 12 years of age when:
    •   in a vessel less than 4.8 metres;
    •   when in an open area of a vessel less than 8 metres in length that is underway;

By all boaters in a vessel less than 4.8 metres in the following heightened risk situations (‘heightened risk’ is any time when there is greater risk of either an incident occurring; or if an incident does occur it might be more difficult to help yourself):
    •   at night;
    •   on open (ocean) waters;
    •   on alpine waters;
    •   when boating alone; and
    •   when the boat is being used as a tender more than 400 metres from shore;

At times of ‘Skipper Judgement and Direction’ in ‘heightened risk’ situations such as when the weather worsens or the boat breaks down (this makes it clear the skipper has a high level of responsibility);

When water-skiing or wakeboarding;

When operating a canoe or kayak on:
    •   enclosed waters, when more than 100 metres from shore; and
    •   open (ocean) waters.

To introduce the new lifejacket rules there will be a 12 month advisory period, during which NSW Maritime will only penalise repeat offenders.

The changes are detailed in a paper titled Lifejacket Reforms – Saving Lives through Safer Boating, which can be downloaded from NSW Maritime’s website: www.maritime.nsw.gov.au.

The paper points out that to achieve their primary purpose of increasing safety by assisting the wearer to float – and ultimately to prevent them from drowning, lifejackets must be:
    •   the correct type for the situation;
    •   the right size;
    •   correctly maintained;
    •   accessible; and
    •   worn.

Simply carrying lifejackets on board vessels does not save lives because capsize, man-overboard, or other unexpected situations occur suddenly and without warning. Locating and donning lifejackets once in the water can be difficult or impossible, depending on the experience of those involved and other factors such as current, wave action and/or water temperature.

There are many factors that contribute to a boating fatality and it is impossible to conclude absolutely that wearing a lifejacket would save a person’s life in the event of a boating incident. However, there is an international consensus amongst boating safety organisations that a person’s chance of survival can be dramatically increased by wearing a lifejacket.

The following documents can be downloaded...
  • Lifejacket Report

Andrew Thompson Comes Alive!

Andrew Thompson will reincarnate to build his 18 ton Coaster the 'Geordy' (just near the History Tent) this weekend.

He has aged somewhat, but don't be put off by that - he was only 37 when he died, having achieved what a normal person might do in 4 lifetimes - an extraordinary man.

Find out more about this amazing man through this article....

Andrew Thompson. (1773 - 1810)
Thompson arrived in Sydney as a convict on the transport Pitt with the Second Fleet in 1792. He was sentenced to fourteen years transportation for the theft of cloth, valued at about 10 pounds, from the shop of a merchant. Thompson was born c.1773 and was therefore about nineteen on his arrival in Sydney. His father was a weaver manufacturer and dyer at Kirk Yetholm in Scotland and Andrew had been educated at a parochial school until forced to leave due to ill health. He was studying for the excise service when arrested.

In the colony Thompson was appointed to the police service in 1793 and served with distinction at Toongabbie and other areas. In 1796 Governor Hunter appointed him to the Green Hills (later Windsor) and he rose to Chief Constable, a position he held until 1808. The Reverend Samuel Marsden praised Thompson's actions in the 1806 Hawkesbury floods when he saved the lives of 101 residents, plucking them from their rooftops in one of his boats.

Thompson had received an absolute pardon in 1797. He built the first toll bridge at Windsor, established a brewery and a hotel, managed Governor Bligh's Hawkesbury farms, owned ships, a tannery and salt works. In 1804 Governor King had helped Thompson set up a salt manufacturing plant in Broken Bay. The first site was Mullet Island (now Dangar Island) on the Hawkesbury River but later Thompson moved his salt works to Scotland Island, named for his homeland. In 1809 Thompson was granted by Lieutenant Governor Paterson '120 acres on island near the southern extremity of Pittwater Bay - being the first bay on the south west side of the south head of Broken Bay. Rent: 3 shillings per year commencing after 5 years. Governor Macquarie later approved this grant. The grant reserved to the government 'the right of making a Public Road through the island and also reserving for the use of the Crown such timber as may be deemed fit for naval purposes'.

At the salt works on the island Thompson extracted salt from seawater by means of an oil burner. He was able to extract 200 lbs (90 kgs) of salt a week. A house was built and a ship slipway. It was rumoured Thompson operated an illicit still on Scotland Island.

Governor Macquarie was a valued friend and appointed him a justice of the Peace and Chief Magistrate on the Hawkesbury. Macquarie described him as a man of 'sober habits and good character'. The 'exclusives' of the colony hated and maligned Thompson. Macquarie appointed him a trustee of the new turnpike road from Sydney to Parramatta, which antagonised the Reverend Marsden, another appointee. Marsden retired in anger to his farms.

By 1810 Thompson was ill as a result of his strenuous efforts in the Hawkesbury floods of 1809 and he died on 22 October 1810. His estate was valued at between £20,000 and £25,000 (pounds). In his will he bequeathed a quarter of his fortune to Governor Macquarie. Macquarie wrote that Thompson's death 'affected Mrs. Macquarie and myself deeply - for we both had a most sincere and affectionate esteem for our good and most lamented departed friend'.
Thompson's was the first burial in the cemetery of St Matthew's Church at Windsor and Governor Macquarie composed the long epitaph carved on his tombstone, which may still be viewed today.
Before his death Andrew Thompson had laid the keel of a vessel, which he named the "Geordy". "The Sydney Gazette" of 24 November 1810 states:
On Wednesday, the 14th of the present month, a launch took place at Scotland Isle, Pitt Water, of a vessel of 18 tons, said to be one of the finest of her brethren ever built in the Colony.- She makes part of the devised property of the late Mr Thompson, who at the laying down of her keel gave her the name of the "Geordy".

Following Thompson's death the island was initially rented to William Mason for £120 (pounds) for three years. Robert Lathrop Murray then purchased it. In 1812 Scotland Island was offered for sale and the Sydney Gazette advertisement declared it contains 'one hundred and twenty acres of good soil, extensive salt-works, a good dwelling-house and stores, labourers' rooms, and every convenience suitable for a fishery, or shipbuilding, also a vessel of about ninety tons, partly built, still on the stocks.'

In the 1920s the foundations of Thompson's house and the remnants of a wharf were still in existence.
(The text comes from a book on the history of the area called "Pittwater Paradise" by Joan Lawrence.)

Wanted Pre-school handbook

Do you have a Pre-school handbook which includes the history of the kindy? If so, please contact me at helen.webster@exemail.com.au as we would like to use it for the festival on Sunday.

Helen Webster

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