Minutes of TVC meeting Sunday 16th February 2020 at 4pm Thirroul Railway Institute Hall.

PRESENT: Paul Tuckerman, Murray Jones, Ray Smith, Martin Gorrick, Annette Jones, Chris Hay, Sharon Hay, Steve Dillon, Chris Jones, Bob Glynn, Ken Clunas, Glenn Durrance, Jo Holder, George Boyatzis, Catherine Boyatzis, Debbie French, Catherine Philips, Lynne Parker, Jenni Wivell, Jodi Steel, Judy Bourke

APOLOGIES: John Dalla Pozza, Anthony Horneman, Anne Price, Christine Hill, Ian Hill, Bradon Ellem, John Mebberson, Barbara Mebberson, Yvonne Whitesmith, Ron Hutchings, John Stubbs, Mary Durrance, Kay Smith, Peter Spencer

Meeting opened at 4pm. 

WELCOME BY THE PRESIDENT
The President of the TVC welcomed all present. 
Minutes of the previous meeting (22 November 2019) accepted.
Moved – Ray Smith
Seconded – Martin Gorrick

SECRETARIES REPORT
Murray presented the following information provided by Councillor Kershaw to questions raised during the meeting on 22nd November. A copy of this also was provided via the email sent to members. 

1. Painting the Pumphouse
It is programmed to be painted after the school holidays (Feb/March 2020). There is also other work to be completed at the same time, such as the replacing of the internal and external stairs.

2. Noise from motorbikes
Noise from motorbikes and motor vehicles is a matter for the EPA or the Police.

3. Moving of the Amy Monument at the roundabout to the park
There is $42,000 allocated for this to occur. If it does not happen by the end of this financial year it will definitely be by the end of next year.

4. Abandoned car High St, Thirroul
This has now been removed.

5. Reopening of Beatie Ave over the railway bridge
There was a suggestion to reopen Beatie Ave over the railway bridge if the DA is approved for the demolition of the buildings on the Cookson site. Thus trucks could easily exit the Cookson site. Cr Kershaw has spoken to the Manager of Planning, who has passed this onto the planner who is assessing this matter.

6. Change DCP to give Village Character greater importance
DCP provisions will have stronger strategic merit if they support and are consistent with higher strategic planning work. A review of this process is currently being undertaken by the Council.

7. What Councillors are on the traffic committee?
There is no Councillor representation on the Traffic Committee.


TREASURES REPORT
TVC has $4,426.50 in the bank plus $11.70 in cash.

DA subcommittee report:

It has been relatively quiet on the development front since Christmas. Of concern is the proposed development at Wombarra, near Coledale Hospital. Local residents have held well-attended meetings and have a petition circulating.

There is a lot of discussion around the village about the potential redevelopment of Thirroul Plaza. Short term leases are only available at the Plaza. No DA has been lodged as yet. There was a previous DA lodged in 2004 for a 3 story building with apartments. It is believed that this has since lapsed. It was noted that there was a crew drilling in the car park recently.  All we can do is wait for the DA to appear.

A suggestion was made that the TVC invite the new Head of Planning at Council – Linda Atkins to the next TVC meeting to discuss this and other development issues in Thirroul. This was agreed to and Murray will write and invite her to attend the meeting on 26 April 2020.

28 George St – this development has been approved. Now 4 townhouses have been approved rather than the 5 originally planned. A meeting of concerned neighbouring residents was held to discuss if there was any potential action that could be taken to reverse this decision. A number of options were considered including legal action. This ruled out as it was considered too expensive and lengthy. Another option was to take the concerns about the perceived basis of the Wollongong Local Planning Panel to the Ombudsman’s Office. However, this would only look at the process and not result in overturning the result. Neither action was taken.   

The only other possible avenue of defense against this style of development is via the heritage listing process. This action has to be taken by the owners before any DA is considered. It appears that there is potential for further development in the street so the only way to save what remains in the street is to have the house's heritage-listed. The TVC is aware that local residents have had meetings to discuss this action. 

Tasman Ave – It was reported that a developer has been active in this street trying to purchase properties near the nursing home. 

ACTION: Murray to write to the Head of Planning at Council – Linda Atkins and invite her to the next TVC meeting on 26 April 2020 to discuss development issues. 

Murray has done this. Awaiting a response.

Beach Precinct:

Nothing is happening at present in relation to the Amy Monument which is located on the roundabout near Thirroul Pool. A new location was identified however, garbage bins have been moved to this spot.

It was reported that there was a beautiful monument in Sydney that was in much the same situation as the Amy monument. The Council erected attractive bollards around it to protect it. It was suggested this might work here. The only issue is the garbage trucks as they need space to maneuver. 

The monument, which was erected to remember those whose lives were lost when the brig “Amy” was driven ashore on Thirroul Beach during a storm on 13 February 1898. The monument was originally positioned close to Flanagan’s Creek. It was repositioned in front of the Surf Club. It was later moved to its current spot. Over five years ago the TVC pushed for it to be moved to a more protected location where people can read the inscriptions.

Graffiti Report:

Murray read the following report of the Graffiti Free Thirroul Committee meeting held on 16 November 2019 prepared by the Convenor, Tony Horneman.

It was agreed that the scope of the committee was to report and control illegal graffiti vandalism in the Thirroul area with an aim for a ‘Graffiti Free Thirroul’.

  1. Offensive graffiti in the laneway beside Cucina Café, LHD, Thirroul was reported.  Lucy spoke to the owners of the café but nothing happened. Tony H reported the graffiti to Council 7 Aug 2019, asking them to approach the owner about removing the graffiti.  Follow-up email sent 18 Nov 2019.
  2. Graffiti on private property Redman Rd/King St (apartment complex beside Anita’s Theatre) has not been removed yet.  Peter S to investigate further.
  3. A lengthy discussion about what to do about Station St Thirroul wall opposite the school.  
  4. John DP told of meeting Dept of Corrective Services work teams who over paint graffiti in Thomas Gibson Park

Next meeting: Saturday 29th February at 10am.

The offensive graffiti on the wall of Cucina’s Cafe has been painted over. 

Council was contacted about the state of the mural near St Michael’s school in Station Street. The Council was contacted and they stated that repainting this was not in their current budget. Since the last TVC meeting TVC member, Peter spent 10 hours repainting the wall. The TVC wants to recognise this work by Peter.

It was suggested that the Council has a Public Art Officer who could be contacted to see if the Council could redo the wall. Work is currently taking place in the Wollongong Arts Precinct. It was reported that the original mural which consisted of a number of panels was done by the Council in association with the Neighbourhood Centre that was located nearby. It was suggested that the TVC write to Council about the refurbishment of the wall. 

ACTION: Murray to write to Council about the refurbishment of the wall. However, upon investigation, it was noted that the RMS and the School will also need to be involved so further action will be necessary.

Gardening Report:

No gardening report provided. 

Preparation of the Seaside and Arts Festival (4th - 5th April):

At the invitation of the Austinmer/Thirroul Lions Club, on Saturday 4th April the TVC will host a stand. The TVC will use the same equipment as last year – a gazebo, banners, and flags. 

Staffing of this comprises 4 lots of 2-hour shifts with 2-3 people each shift.   The time slots are 8-10 am, 10-12 noon, 12-2 pm, 2-4 pm.  So ideally 12 volunteers are required.  If anyone wishes to volunteer please contact Murray with your preferred time(s) via email.  

This year the aim is to attract more people to the stall and engage them in discussing TVCs activities. Discussion was held about how to better engage people.

Ideas – 

  • Have a couple of ‘Red Button’ issues for discussion. 
  • Identify 1 to 3 key points from the Traffic Submission from the TVC and look at developing a petition to put to Council and the RMS. As a suggestion it maybe the idea of a Beach Link Road as suggested in the TVC submission could be put forward.
  • Protection of the escarpment could be an identified issue
  • Have a flyer to hand out to people
  • Utilise the media before the festival to garner interest - maybe an article in the 2515 magazine before the festival. This could become an ongoing piece in the magazine looking at the various aspects of work done by the TVC, such as graffiti removal and beautification via the gardening committee. 

Jo Holder and Martin Gorrick will liaise about the suggestions and send out an invitation to interested members to form a subcommittee to discuss the issues listed above and how to engage local residents. Meeting to be held Sunday 1st March.

ACTIONS: 

  1. Murray to collect names of people wishing to help out at the stall.
  2. Murray and Annette to prepare an article for the 2515 magazine and look at engaging the media. An article has been submitted to the 2515 Magazine and should be in the next edition.
  3. Martin and Jo to meet to form a subcommittee to work out the red button issues and potentially prepare a petition.
  4. Murray and Annette to work on a flyer in conjunction with Peter Spencer. 

Anglicare Development:

The revised DA had reduced the number of independent living units and aged care beds while adding 55 houses to the development. This DA has gone to Council and is now with the Dept of Planning for its consideration and approval. On 19 September 2019 the Dept of Planning requested additional information. Anglicare has presented a 17 page report, which is available on the Department of Planning website. It was reported that this is difficult to access and read.

From the plans it appears that one of the roads leading into Wilkies Street has been removed.  Originally 4 roads went into Wilkies Street. It now appears this is 3 roads. 

There a number of key issues that remain of concern – Protection of the Aboriginal Heritage sites and the heritage listed Turpentine forest.  It appears that the buffer zone around the Turpentine forest has been reduced from 60 metres (in 2006) to 20 metres. Concern was expressed about this, especially given the recent bushfires.  

The issue of access was discussed and the meeting was reminded that WCC imposed a condition of consent for the development was that access over Tramway Creek to Point Street had to be built. There are now questions as to if this will happen. We need to keep on top of this development to ensure that this happens. 

 

GENERAL BUSINESS:

Bathers Pavilion at Austimer Beach: Council has been looking at the refurbishment of the Heritage-listed Bathers Pavilion/change rooms at Austinmer Beach. Council said there would be minimal restoration and this would be done in heritage colours. However, it now appears via the DA notice on the building that the Council wants to include a disabled toilet in the centre of the building. The proposal can be viewed online at the following site: https://our.wollongong.nsw.gov.au/austinmer-bathers-pavilion. It was reported that locals have requested that the Council come and talk to them but nothing has occurred yet. 

A request has been made that the TVC write to Council asking that the location of the disabled toilet be reconsidered. A suggestion is that perhaps it would be better placed closer to the car park at the northern end of the beach. 

ACTION: The TVC to write to Council asking that the location of the disabled toilet be reconsidered to the northern end of the beach. 

Decision made not to write to Council as submissions closed on 9 December so it would be unfair to those who put their submissions in on time for the WCC to give us consideration.

It was reported that the Council Compliance Officer regularly goes to the Austinmer Pavilion and removes notices that have been stuck up on a wall of the Pavilion by local residents. These could be advertising local music events, market days, etc. To prevent the removal of these notices Council has suggested that local organisations sign a form to go to Council. The Executive of the TVC refrained from signing this as the posters are placed directly onto the heritage-listed building.  

George St and traffic: Concern was expressed about the traffic issue at the junction of George and Phillip Sts. This is a real bottleneck during peak hours and needs addressing. Residents are using alternative routes which can be dangerous due to restricted lines of site. 

Lighting at Phillip St and Lawrence Hargrave Drive: The lighting in this location and especially on the pedestrian crossing in front of the Ryan’s Hotel is not sufficient and needs to be reviewed.   This issue has been previously discussed and correspondence written.

St Michael’s school: Concern was expressed about the location where children wait for the bus and pick up at St Michael’s school as there is no shelter for the children and no guard rail to protect them should there be an out of control vehicle.   

National Trust: The National Trust is holding a forum in mid-April to mid-May to discuss trust issues. It was asked if the TVC was willing to promote such special occasions throughout the year. The TVC agreed to this request.

Meeting closed 5:20pm

Next Meeting: Sunday 26th April

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Railway Institute Hall in Thirroul.
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