2016 Gazette: Blue Mountains Year in Review

From Olympic hopefuls to airport protests anda new MP,the Blue Mountains Gazette covered it all on the front pages of2016. Here’s a snapshot of the year.

Susan Templeman celebrates her election as the Federal Member for Macquarie in Springwood in July.

January6: Three men from Blue Mountains are accused of the gang rape of a 15-year-old girl in 2012 in Hazelbrook.

January 13: 63-year-oldwoman diesin Katoomba home with only her dog forcompany. She is found two weeks later by her neighbour.

January 20: Maria Venuti to lead the main event on Australia Day in Glenbrook.

January 27: Mary Waterford from Wentworth Falls is honored as a member of the Order Of Australia forher socialservice and welfare commitments.

February 3, 2016: Hazelbrook Public School is the first school in Australia to sourcefair trade polo shirts.

February 10:Blue Mountains operators fear a reduction in tourism due to lack of marketing to promote the region.

February 17: Woodford parents introduce Australia’s first weekly newspaper for children.

New national newspaper: Woodford parents introduce Australia’s first weekly newspaper for children. Editor Saffron Howden (right) with husband, Crinkling’s graphic designer Remi Bianchi, and daughter Peta.

February 24: Andrew Flintoff, ex-cricketer, visits Katoombato film TV showFreddie Fries Down Under.

March9: Macquarie MP Louise Markus sparks conflict with Blue Mountains council and Labor candidate Susan Templeman over Badgerys Creek Airport.

March16: Peter Hackney, Blue Mountains spokesman for the gay community welcomes Lifeline’s decision toaddress large suicide rates in the gay community.

March 23: $4 millionsettlement for the 39 who sued Endeavour Energy for 2013Winmalee bushfires .

March 30: Mushroom farming ceases after Department Of Primary Industriesevict operators at Glenbrook’s unusedrailway tunnel.

March2: Aircraft crash at Katoomba airfield kills 80-year-oldpilot, Rodney Hay.

Loss to the community: Aircraft crash at Katoomba airfield kills 80-year-old pilot, Rodney Hay

April6: PMMalcolm Turnbull faces 200 anti-airport protesters in Glenbrook.

April 13: Former Blue MountainsmayorDaniel Mylesaccuses “pro development”forces in business community of encouraging higher density housing near town centres.

April 20: Mt Riverview nativeJennifer Hensmakesthe Australian shooting team for next Olympics. Lawson mother who lost son in a hit and run concerned over plans to abolish the Road Safety Tribunal.

April 27: Labor to implement a nighttime “no fly zone’’ for Badgerys Creek Airport, as announced by Bill Shorten.

May4: Katoomba High school students boycott rundown school toiletswherethe P and C are raising funds over the government, sparking controversy. Three Blue Mountains Cops receive recognitionat the Police Officer of the Year awards, hosted by combined Rotary clubs, for harrowing rescues.

May 11: Liberal party backtrack on merging point at Blaxland,in an effort to get theBadgerys Creek airport flight paths on point. Entrepreneurs bottle Blue Mountains air and sell to the Chinese.

May 18:Blue Mountainshas been rejected fortheir first compressedfoam fire tanker, with the advanced fire equipment set to go to the Sydney regioninstead.

May 25: Residents of Jamieson streetin Wentworth Fallswelcome new sealed road,following years of travelling ona flood proneand dusty street. Labor opposition calls on Baird governmenttocommitto anew ServiceNSW centre in Springwood.

June1: The 770victims of the2013 bushfiremay only receive $200,000 under settlement with Endeavour Energy.

June8: Former Bullaburra residentand long distance athlete, Ben St Lawrence, makes comeback to Australian Olympic team, following hamstring injury.

June 15:Hazelbrook’s Frank Barr receives Order of Australiafrom NSW Governor-General for histhree decade service of youth withthe Scoutingmovement.

Honoured: Hazelbrook’s Frank Barr receives Order of Australia from NSW Governor-General for his three decade service of youth with the Scouting movement.

June 22: Macquarie and pre-poll voting -politicalpundits predictone in three of Macquarie’s104,379 constituentswillcast their vote prior to July 2.Domestic visitorsincreasein the Mountains along with NSW’s record.

June 29: Macquarie voters to decide marginal electorate with Labor’s Susan Templeman to battle against Liberal’s Louise Markus for the third time.

July6: Macquarie MP-elect Susan Templeman celebrated victory after her thirdattempt.

July 13: Springwood Children’s Centrefacesclosure with lack of funding. NSW Environmental Protection Authority completes last inspection ofClarence Colliery’s Wollangambe River clean-up.

July 20: Blackheath climber, Tom O’ Halloran, is thefirst Australian to climbKatoomba’s grade 35 route –‘Baker’s Dozen’.

July 27: Blackheath Rotary clubplan for launch of famous Blackheath rocket replica for memorial park.

August3:50 Years on from theBattle of Long Tan: Tunnel – Bob Bowtell remembered. Blue MountainsJessica Fox’sRioOlympicsjourney is on course.

August 10:The 770 Blue Mountainsresidentsof the 2013 bushfiresare due toreceive 4.5 per cent of total assessedlosses from Endeavor Energy.

August 17: NSW PremierMikeBaird pulled intotheBlue MountainsCouncil electionafter opposition leader Luke Foleycallson him to remove Liberal Party candidateJeff Eganfrom the party’s ward4.

August 24:Blue Mountains commuters react negatively to the state governmentdecision tobuildthe new intercity trains overseas with issues predicted with the lines.

August 31:Community of Woodford wantscouncil to recogniseand restore theirCBD; from Number 56 –68 on the GWH, andsignpetition to rezone the region.

September 2: Rosanna Taylor ofWentworth Falls, continues toreceiveRedCross counsellors support,18 years after she donated husband’s organsto save eight lives.

September7: 48-year-oldLawson artist,Michael White, suffering from Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis,takes first prizeatSpringwood High School’s Art show.

September 14: Mountains mayorMark Greenhill dominatesthe council election results. Labor secures five spots to theLiberalsthree council reps.

September 21:Blue Mountains mayorMark Greenhill calls theEISon Badgerys Creek Airporta“con job”and “propaganda”.

October5: Blue Mountains council knocked back for$200,000fundingfor waste removalfrom 2013 bushfires.

October 19: Police react tooverseas terrorism by imposing new regulations on Mountains festivals and parades. Leura coupleSimone Bateman and Amanda Solomons,have first baby and welcome Labor’sblocking of the same-sex marriage plebiscite bill.

October 26: Call for police graves to be repaired starting with the grave ofEdwin Oliver Pratt at Katoomba cemetery who waskilled in theline of duty.

November2: 110-year-old Wayzgoose building in Leura spared butfaces foreclosure; ownerMark Alchin outraged over council’s approach.

Fighting for heritage: 110-year-old Wayzgoose building in Leura spared but faces foreclosure; owner Mark Alchin outraged over council’s approach.

November9: Blackheath marks the 64thRhododendron64th festival. Former Springwood councillor KerryKime is buried.

November 16: Critics attack approval of Badgery Creek Airport EISwith flight paths still not selected. Residents warned to take precautionsas weather warms and pets are treated for snake bites.

November 23: Blackheath Church needs a miracle as flock diminishes and minister pens letter to Gazette pleading for new parishioners.

November 30: Turtles are under threat but they could have new nesting stations on Wentworth Falls Lake to help them survive.

December 7: Cyclist without a helmet given large fine at the Rhodo festival after stricter police measures are brought in.

December 14: The airport is go for launch with PM Malcolm Turnbull signing off. Mayor condemns the move.

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