Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Monday, August 04, 2008

Our New Doctor for Robertson

Ten days ago I reported that I had heard a rumour about a possible new Doctor for Robertson. Tonight I can confirm that it is true.

Tonight I met our new Doctor for Robertson, Dr Steve McGilvray, and his wife Helen, who is an RN, and is the Practice Manager. They are both very personable, and friendly, which is very nice. They are also both pet lovers, (well Helen might even be a bit of an enthusiast, but that's OK too). I feel they will fit in well in Robbo.

Dr Steve McGilvray (centre) and Helen (on right)
We were at the Fountaindale Grand Manor (the former Ranelagh House) for the Annual General Meeting of the Robertson Chamber of Commerce.

It was a good roll up, which is encouraging, for the Chamber has been only just surviving for some time. We even gained a volunteer as Treasurer of the Chamber, which will be a great relief to Dorothy, who has been doing everything for some months now.

Clr Paul Tuddenham came along, which was nice. This was the first time I have had the chance to speak privately with Paul, and I must say I was pleasantly surprised, and impressed by him. We have crossed swords, metaphorically at several public meetings, but there is always an element of role playing in public meetings. Tonight we spoke at some length about Council issues and, in particular, attempts by the State Government to assume control of the water and sewerage functions of Council. Apparently the Government is wanting to assume control of the revenue flow, and Council is trying to fight them off - partly to protect the revenue base, but also to support local employment. Makes sense to me.
Clr Paul Tuddenham,
Deputy Mayor of Wingecarribee Shire Council
Terry Oakes-Ash and his wife were at the meeting, representing the Southern Highlands Business Chamber. Terry made a brief speech supporting the Robertson Chamber of Commerce, and dare I say it, making it clear which groups within Council which he would like to see re-elected, and more importantly, other groups who he would rather not see elected, in the September elections. He also spoke in favour of the Leisure Centre proposal. Dorothy Baker, the President of the Robbo Chamber thanked Terry for his comments, but reminded everybody that the Robertson Chamber of Commerce is a non-partisan body, and is not aligned with any political party or electoral grouping.

Its all right, Dorothy. We expect Terry to speak his mind. Anybody who knows Terry Oakes-Ash understands that he is in favour of investment in the Southern Highlands - for the sake of the future of the highlands, and for job creation for the sake of the younger generation. I for one, would prefer a Council which was more sympathetic to the interests of the environment, and parks and open land, rather than more shopping centres and apartment buildings and endless housing estates. But at least Terry is always clear about what he stands for. So, I am sure nobody was upset by Terry's statements. And he has a droll sense of humour as well, which is good.

For the record, local Robertson resident Councillor, Clr Larry Whipper did not attend tonight's meeting, even though it was held in Robertson, hosted by the Robertson Chamber of Commerce. Enough said.

Robert Goldsack spoke about the forthcoming Springtime in Robertson program of events.Cate Hutchinson, who is now working for the Southern Highlands Business Chamber, but who is also a Robertson resident, spoke about the Horse Expo event which she is organising in conjunction with the Springtime in Robertson Festival. I had been a bit sceptical about the reports of the Horse event which I had heard previously, but now that I know Cate is running it, I am confident that it will all come together.
Cate was previously a Small Business Advisory Officer for the Southern Highlands region, employed by the Federal Government, but the program under which she was employed has folded, following the last election. So it is good to see that Cate is now working with the Business Chamber.
It was a very pleasant evening, and typically Robertsonian in its informality. But that's OK with me.

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