THE YEAR IN NEWS AND EVENTS
IT is going to be an “exciting year” in the Shire of Manjimup as the council pushes for major boosts in tourism, infrastructure and employment, according to the shire president.
Cr Wade DeCampo said 2017 would be the first full year of the Manjimup Town Centre Revitalisation project, which received a $22.3 million State Budget windfall last year and includes improvement and additions to access and aesthetics in the CBD.
MANJIMUP Shire Council is looking for public comment about a draft policy aimed at reducing unauthorised parking by backpackers in and around the CBD.
The policy would allow landowners to provide temporary camping for seasonal workers employed on their land.
SEVERAL community groups in the Warren-Blackwood area have received a slice of $700,000 to help develop projects.
While announcing the funding last week, Warren-Blackwood MLA Terry Redman said regional communities relied on volunteers and community groups to get things done.
MANJIMUP Shire Council has approved plans for a $5 million attraction aimed at making Manjimup an Australian must-see destination.
The South West Energy Experience museum and cafe will house a $1.6 million heritage energy collection made up of pieces used throughout the State’s history.
PEMBERTON and a clutch of the region’s residents will be immortalised on the silver screen when Jasper Jones premieres with a special screening in the town.
To celebrate Pemberton’s involvement, the film is being aired free for townspeople twice before it premieres in cinemas.
businesses could see a boost in confidence and opportunities after the National Broadband Network was switched on in town, according to industry leaders.
About 2500 homes and businesses in the Manjimup townsite are able to connect to the NBN, three months earlier than planned.
SOUTHERN Forests produce is stuck in WA after the detection of an exotic pest forced the region’s growers into lock down.
New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Queensland have introduced movement controls on WA produce, including potatoes, tomatoes and eggplant.
WARREN Blackwood MLA Terry Redman will use his “bittersweet” State Election victory to protect the integrity of Royalties for Regions. Speaking to the Manjimup-Bridgetown Times, Mr Redman said he was “hugely privileged” to be elected for a fourth time.
HUNDREDS of jobs will be created as Talison Lithium begins construction of a $320 million lithium concentration plant at Greenbushes in the next couple of months, the company said.
At its peak, the construction proMANJIMUP ject would employ more than 200 contractors, Talison said in an announcement.
CONTRACTORS are working to finish the roof of the $39 million Warren District Hospital before winter in a bid to keep the project on track and have it open to patients by mid-2018.
Construction is due to be completed in February and recent work has included the installation of external walls and concrete pads.
A LONG-PROPOSED 40mW biomass plant would give security to the region’s forestry industry for at least 25 years, has been put forward.
The Manjimup power plant would burn plantation residue and could secure the town’s energy needs.
PEOPLE throughout the Lower South West gathered at war memorials for Anzac Day services, coinciding with the 75th and 100th anniversaries of some of the worst battles in both World Wars.
Services were held in Boyup Brook, Bridgetown, Greenbushes, Manjimup, Nannup, Northcliffe, Pemberton and Walpole with some centres hosting a Dawn Service while others had two services.
GROWERS are celebrating the sale of more than $1 million of Genuinely Southern Forests produce at Market City Canning Vale.
A participation with Allstates Farms in establishing a dedicated Genuinely Southern Forests floor space at the market in January has attracted more than 30 producers from across the region who supply produce and value-added products to the market.
BUSINESSES and residents across the region are being left without internet for up to nine weeks as they try to connect to the fibre-to-thenode NBN service.
Ongoing issues for people with or connecting to the NBN include a lack of communication with providers and slow speeds due to service connection.
AN $8 million Federal Government grant will allow the expansion of Bridgetown’s aged care home to cater for the growing demand from the area’s ageing population.
“It will be a colossal benefit to the town and region,” Geegeelup Village Hostel chairman and GP Mick Dewing said.
MANJIMUP Shire Council has struck an agreement for the removal of the rail corridor in the town centre in a bid to boost tourist and enhance the town’s identity.
The council endorsed an agreement between Brookfield Rail and the Public Transport Authority of WA for the use and occupation of the rail corridor and infrastructure.
A NEW food trail being developed in Manjimup is part of a strategy to double the value of WA tourism to $12 billion.
The Manjimup trail would join 11 others including the first trail launched in April in Bridgetown, Tourism WA marketing consultant John Stanley said.
TWO businesses in the region will use their slice of $1.57 million of State Government funding to break into Asian export markets and make Lower South West premium produce an international brand.
Future Fields Pty Ltd (Bannister Downs Dairy) and Fresh Produce Alliance Pty Ltd each received $200,000 in the Grants for Asian Market Export and were two of eight recipients in the State.
POTATO growers have been warned about a new aggressive bacteria that could cause significant production loss in the region.
Dickeya dianthicola can cause disease such as soft rot or blackleg in potatoes.
QUINNINUP Tavern owner Dale Atkins is determined to rebuild the 67-year-old iconic business after it was completely destroyed in a fire.
The tavern, which was insured, was already engulfed in flames when the call went out to emergency services about 4.30am.
COMMUNITY members are on a mission to preserve a hut built about 130 years ago by some of the region’s early settlers before it is lost to fire or degradation.
The Bolghinup Hut is located about 30km south-west of Pemberton near the Yeagarup Dunes and was constructed in the 1880s by George Thomas and Jesse Giblett.
TALISON Lithium looks set to start work by September on a $3 million camp to house 200 workers who will build its new $320 million lithium concentration plant at Greenbushes.
Bridgetown-Greenbushes Shire Council gave conditional approval to a development application for the temporary camp, pending public comment.
MANJIMUP’S tourism industry has received a powerful boost following an announcement of $2.68 million in Federal funding towards the planned energy museum.
The South West Energy Experience is the Manjimup Shire Council’s $5.95 million plan to house a heritage energy collection made up of pieces used throughout the State’s history.
FORESTRY Minister Dave Kelly met Nannup Timber Processing directors in a bid to save the company’s green mill after the announcement of a restructure that will cost 30 jobs.
Mr Kelly confirmed the meeting had taken place after the company said Nannup’s green mill would close as soon as September 6.
PLANS are under way in Nannup to build a tower to house the world’s biggest wooden clock in a bid to provide a “tremendous” boost to tourism in the region that could rival Walpole’s Tree Top Walk.
Nannup Shire Council approved plans for a Nannup Clock Tower on the corner of Warren Road and Forrest Street to house the clock, built by craftsman Kevin Bird, will include a purpose-built visitor centre and retail show.
COMMUNITY leaders are concerned the State Budget’s $4 billion Royalties for Regions fund is being used for projects previously part of normal expenditure in a bid to free up money for metropolitan projects.
Manjimup shire president Paul Omodei, Bridgetown-Greenbushes shire president and John Nicholas and Warren Blackwood MLA Terry Redman have expressed their concern for projects worth $861 million that were partially funded outside of Royalties for Regions.
REDUCING red tape for business and a priority on the agriculture and horticulture industries to boost employment and tourism are some of the ideas from candidates in the Manjimup and Bridgetown-Greenbushes council elections.
With less than a month before the 2017 election is held on October 21, residents in the Manjimup and Bridgetown-Greenbushes shires are being invited to have their say on who represents them for the next four years through a postal vote.
MORE than a decade of lobbying will be rewarded when construction begins on the first of 55 seniors homes next April at the old Manjimup Primary School.
A milestone in the Manjimup Seniors Living Project was reached when it was announced a subdivision application had been lodged with the Western Australian Planning Commission.
THE Shire of Manjimup and the Southern Forests Food Council have been recognised as national leaders in economic development.
The organisations were celebrated for their dedication towards job creation and improving business confidence in the region at the Economic Development Australia 2017 awards in Ballarat, Victoria.
MANJIMUP and Bridgetown Greenbushes smashed the postal vote average in the WA Local Government Election on Saturday.
Manjimup Shire Council’s west ward achieved the third highest participation rate in the State.
THE region’s potato growers and industry representatives have joined forces to investigate a 10,000tonne seed potato export agreement with Egypt as a way to reinvigorate the industry.
A delegation of growers, Kon Peos, Patrick Fox, and Aaron Chapman, WA Potatoes chief executive officer Simon Moltoni and Department of Primary Industries representative Andrew Taylor, will travel to Egypt before the end of the year to discuss the proposal.
THE life-saving RAC Rescue Helicopter has been secured for the South West with the announcement of $27.9 million State Government funding for the next three years.
Under the 2017-18 State Budget, the Bunbury-based rescue helicopter service was not funded past this financial year, which resulted in a Nationals-led campaign to save the service that included a petition.
AN accommodation project proposed for the Manjimup CBD is drawing cautious approval from people in the hospitality industry.
The development is proposed for the old Jaycees Park and would offer 20 to 50 business class rooms in a move that is designed to boost tourism in the region.
A CORONER will take six months to make a ruling on the decade-along mystery surrounding the disappearance of four people from Nannup, but says his predisposition is that the group is still alive.
A three-day coronial inquest into the disappearance and “suspected deaths” of internet cult leader Gary Felton, his partner Chantelle McDougall, this daughter Leela and friend Tony Popic was held in Busselton.
WA Premier Mark McGowan was in Manjimup to officially open the State’s only commercial walnut processing facility.
Omega Walnuts welcomed a crowd of industry leaders and community representatives for the opening of the facility, which will package about 110 tonnes of walnuts a year.
COMMUNITY outrage has followed the State Government announcement the Bridgetown and Pemberton camp schools will close from 2019 as part of State Budget repair measures.
The schools are two of six affected Statewide and, as part of costcutting measures, the School of the Air will also close and the Level 3 Classroom Teacher program will be put on hold until 2020.
Manjimup Volunteer Fire and Rescue members Thomas Kingston, front, Lt Michael Whitelaw, Capt. Sharon Armstrong, Adam Jendrszczak, Adam Fisher, ex-Capt. John Jonker and Clinton Bailey gathered ahead of the Australia Day celebrations at the Manjimup Timber and Heritage Park in January.
Lee Kernaghan's stage presence, enthusiasm and talent entertains the crowd at the 32nd Boyup Brook Country Music Festival in February. Kernaghan headlined a line-up that included 2016 Star Maker winner Karin Page, Carter & Carter and Nannup-born Patrick McMahon.
Northcliffe artist Tony Windberg held two printmaking workshops as part of the third annual Unearthed Pemberton Festival in April, which celebrated the arts and heritage, adventure and food and wine of the region.
Back in March, James Isles encouraged people to join him to shave or colour their hair to raise money for the Leukaaemia Foundation through the World’s Greatest Shave.
River Cottage presenter and chef Paul West plates up a truffle toastie at the Truffle Kerfuffle in June.
This mother nature-inspired garment designed by Manjimup Senior High School Year 9 student Indio Giles, was modelled by Georgia Jeffery at the Manjimup AATFA heat in August.
Farm manager Paddy Elphick was thrilled Omega Premium Walnuts had been selected as a winner in the Delicious Produce Awards in May.
Pauline Collins, front left, Tahnee Conopo, Julie Kaniecki, rear left, Evy Apeldoorn, Mel Warren, Katherine Millar and Manjimup shire president Paul Omodei celebrate the Manjimup Regional AquaCentre's AUSTSWIM State win in July.
Manjimup Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service's Michael Whitelaw, front left, Manjimup SES' Brian Renehan, Ringbark Bushfire Brigade's Michael Smith, Daniel Peters, back, left, Adam Jendrszczak, Thomas Kingston, Jessica Sarinis, Kelsie Hawkins, Paul Tempra and Lenny Delandgrafft encouraged people to come along to the Bushfire Street Meet in Coronation Park in November.
Manjimup Cherry Harmony Festival MCs Wyatt Nixon-Lloyd, Jon Doust and Jordan Piggott finished up at the Long Table Soiree at Newtons Orchards earlier this month.
Doris Donovan was a guest of honour in October at the turning of the sod for the Sandra Donovan Sound Shell, named after her late daughter Sandra.
Nayte Rawson, 2, enjoyed getting his hands dirty at the launch of the Stellar Violets nature Playgroup in September.