Tuesday, December 28, 2010

What's for sale, the handrail or the house?

Click on image for close-up

A bit in-your-face, this marketing campaign, don't you think?


I've since heard that it is the house that's for sale, at $1,990,000 -- and that includes the handrail! However, with such humble pricetag there was no money left over for a professionally painted FOR SALE sign. [Here] it is and [here] and [here] and also [here]!

Mind you, two blocks farther down at the peaceful end of the lane you can buy [Riverbend] for just $10,000 more. For that you get 17 times more land area and 17 times more waterfront, and a stately home which gracefully wears the patina of a bygone age. It exudes character while at the same time keeping all sorts of characters away because the nearest neighbours are SEVERAL HUNDRED metres distant, not watching from behind the fence!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Nelligen. Who knows where the name came from?

ISBN 978-0-9751016-2-9Nobody seems to know, not even my wife who usually knows everything! ☺

As Stuart Magee explains in his beautiful little volume of local history, The Rivers and the Sea, "the need for the place arose in the 1850s when Braidwood and its satellites such as Majors Creek, Araluen and Mongarlowe were up to their ears in the explosion of people and commerce surrounding the discovery of gold.

The movement of goods, people and information between Braidwood and Sydney was chancy and oh so slow. Depending on the weather, bullock trains might take three weeks or three months. Horse-drawn carriage or dray was usually quicker but limited in capacity and expensive. Down the mountain lay the very navigable Clyde and thence a 24-hour run by steamship to Sydney. There was, as I understand the historian Reynolds, some competition between Currowan and Nelligen as to which would receive Braidwood's blessing, and Nelligen won out.

So, in the 1850s, the town was laid out and the road from Braidwood was opened. And a tough road it was too. There is a number of old photos showing the grim results of teams of horses and bullocks going over the side of the Clyde Mountain road.

Nelligen boomed! Over the next 20 years there arose four pubs, two stores, a blacksmith, a bakery, a police station, a court-house, schools, churches and a post office, Above all was the terminal building of the Illawarra Steam Navigation Company. If today you were to set up your picnic in that nice little park between the general store and the wharf, you would be smack in the middle of the 126 x 45 feet ISNC's jetty and store (oh, very well then, 38 x 14 metres). Twice a week the steamers plied between Nelliugen and Sydney, stopping at the far less consequential village of Batemans Bay on the way. The size of some of the paddle-steamers, and later screw-steamers, is astonishing. The Kembla, a paddle-steamer in use on the Clyde from 1861, was 183 feet long. The S.S. Moruya was 150 feet and 530 tons. The S.S. Allowrie was 180 feet. It ran aground on a mudflat in the river on one occasion and had to await the high tide to float it off. The last steamer to call at the Port of Nelligen was in 1952 - 99 years after the first."

But the goldfields centering on Braidwood started to run down, then the timber industry went into decline, and, Stuart continues in his little book, "after such a pivotal role in the development of the southern parts of the state, Nelligen has been deserted even by the highway and left to fend for itself.

All up and down the coast the faces of small towns are being tarted up and titivated by tourist-boards and enthusiastic councils. But Nelligen remains untouched and unimpressed by such progress. Not even the modern marvels of reticulated water and sewerage have imposed themselves upon it.

If I lived there I would hope not to see it change. But you sense it may just be resting after its great exertions and sooner or later some bright spark will again see it as the right place to do heroic things."
(reproduced with Stuart's permission)

There is so much more in this delightful book but I won't spoil your anticipation as I am sure your local Angus & Robertson has a copy of this enjoyable read!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

It's on for young and old ...

... the Sproxton Lane Street Party!

I'll let you know if it turns out to be anything like this!

P.S. Nick, I am told even Greeks and Germans are welcome!

As a precaution wear your Bali crash-helmet with your foustanella and pair of tsarouhia !

Don't worry about the fermeli as the weather will be quite hot.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

All EARs!

Our community radio, Eurobodalla Access Radio, has a full program of easy-listening music.

Our favourite announcer Marlies Jaksic is just an 'e' and an 's' short of being 'Deutsch'. She presents Nostalgia on Sundays from noon to 3 p.m. Take a bow, Marlies!

Marlise and most of the other presenters do requests so give them a call on 4474 3443 and ask for your favourite song!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Don't condemn Benny's condoms

Chupa Chups, DUREX, and Panadol all on display alongside each other - isn't that stretching it a bit? (pardon the pun)
Benny is rebuilding his General Store which went up in flames earlier this year.

His innovative merchandising of placing DUREX right in between Chuppa Chups and Panadol is stretching it a bit (if you will pardon the pun), but then, Benny is a Kiwi just like Ian and Craig.

Ian and Craig were seen walking down a street in Bondi. Ian happens to look in one of the shop windows and sees a sign that catches his eye. The sign said 'Suits $10.00 each, Shirts $4.00 each, Trousers $5.00 per pair'.

Ian says to his pal, 'Craig, look! We could buy a whole lot of those, and whin we get beck to InZid, we could make a fortune. Now whin we go unto the shop, you be quiet, okay? Jist lit me do all the talking cause uf they hear our eccint, they might not be nice to us. I'll speak in my bist Aussie eccint.'

'No worries', smiled Craig, 'I'll keep my mouth shut.'

They go in and Ian says, 'I'll take fufty suits et $10.00 each, 100 shirts et $4.00 each, and fufty peers of trousers et $5.00 each. I'll beck up my truck end...'

The owner of the shop interrupts, 'You're from New Zealand, aren't you?'

'Will... Yis,' says a surprised Ian. 'How the hill dud you know thet?'

The owner says, 'This is a dry cleaners'.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Pedalling a Winnebiko around Australia

Why in the world would anybody, at the age of sixty, in their right minds even think of packing up everything they owned, renting out their home, selling the car and riding push bikes, which at that time they did not even own, around Australia?

Well, Peter and Barbara Guppy, a retired couple from Moruya, 25km down the road from us, did just that in January 2008 - and they are still at it!

Read their blog [here] and [email them] a few words of encouragement!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Netting the big one!

NSW Marine Parks Authority rangers have recently discovered an illegal mesh net within a Habitat Protection Zone in the Batemans Marine Park. The rangers found the net while conducting a routine patrol in the Clyde River, two kilometres upstream from Nelligen.

Acting Batemans Marine Park Manager, Julie Cooney, said that netting had been prohibited in the Clyde since the Batemans Marine Park Zoning Plan was adopted in 2007.

“All of the tidal waters of the Clyde River have been declared Habitat Protection where netting is banned,” Ms Cooney said.

“If you are caught netting in the Clyde you are liable to be fined up to $22,000."

Anyone with information about illegal netting in the Clyde River is urged to contact (02) 4476 0800. All information received will be treated with the strictest confidentiality.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

It's catching!

It seems that after the recent almost-a-million-dollar sale, others want to get in on the act:

Number 21 Sproxton Lane has gone on the market at $900,000. It was on the market last year - see [here] - but didn't find a buyer. It last sold in 2001 for $288,250.

It used to belong to my old friend Tony Finsterer who first got me interested in Nelligen - see [here].

The property next to it, Number 19, set a record in 2006 when it sold for $925,000.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


Well, there's still money around: the house up the lane sold for $970,000! People from Canberra bought it as their weekender!

That's almost a million dollars for a property of 1,500m² - or is it 1,800m²? - which makes Riverbend's seven-plus acres (approx. 30,000m²) look very cheap even at twice the price.

The selling agents were First National Real Estate in the Bay. Maybe I should talk to them?

Sunday, October 10, 2010

One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind

This weekend I learned, rather belatedly, something about the birds and the bees - well, bees mainly - as I watched hobby-apiatrist Dimitri (known to his friends as Jim because he's crazy!) got a buzz out of robbing his 20,000-plus bees of their labouriously collected honey.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Sunday's what?

The Sproxton Lane house is open for inspection!

I am wondering how many house's these semi-literate agent's sell!

The last agent I employed spelt commission with one "m" and one "s". Maybe he should have spelt it "com'is'ion"?

I have passed the matter on to the Apostrophe Protection Society which fights for truth, justice and the abolition of the redundant apostrophe, which i's wedging it's way into place's where no apostrophe belong's.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Sproxton Lane house goes under the hammer!

This one is at # 9 Sproxton Lane and the auction will be on October the 9th.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

You'll never be late again for church ...

... if you buy Nelligen's old St Joseph's Roman Catholic Church in Runnyford Road.

The first church building on this site was of wood and the total cost including altar and furnishings was about 200 in the old money. The official opening took place on Sunday 24 November 1872 with the Right Reverend The Vicar General (Sheehy) conducting the opening ceremony. The Very Reverend Dean White of Braidwood was in attendance; the incumbent priest, the Reverend J J Garvey, delivered the sermon.

In late 1894 a tender was let to Mr William Isley of Braidwood to construct a new brick church for the growing congregation. The clay for the bricks was donated by Mr Charles McCauley and was dug from the "Racecourse Paddock". The records show that a working bee of sixteen woodcutters was formed from the congregation to cut wood for the firing of the bricks. The wood was donated by Mr Stephen Richardson, the Nelligen butcher. Some of the woodcutters were: Pat Egan, Mick Byrne, Dave Roughley, and Ben, Jim, Pat, Bob and Vincent McCauley. The cornerstone was laid on 24 October 1895 and the new church was opened in 1896.

Socially the Church served its local Catholic congregation for more than three quarters of a century and, being of local significance, has been on the State Heritage Register since 1997. Aesthetically the building, designed in a late Victorian Gothic, has an unusually slender tower and spire, and the building has the potential to reveal information about the stature of the local Catholic church at the end of the 19th century and about the size of the local congregation at that time and the availability of skilled tradesmen.

The Church withstood the many bushfires that have swept the area over the past 90 years and still stands today. Restoration work on the Church was commenced in 1976. A 'damp course' was installed and the majority of the interior plasterwork removed, having been degraded by 'rising damp'. The Church authorities decided that no further services were to be held in Nelligen and restoration work was stopped. The last official service held in the Church was the funeral Mass for Horst Jagow in April 1976.

The building was sold sometime in the late 1990 and converted to an art gallery. It was sold again in 2006 for $475,000 but the new owners never used it, and it has now gone back on the market for $565,000.

Investing in real estate being something of a new religion, here's your chance to combine the old with the new!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Yes we Canberra!

Has a well-known "businessman" in Nelligen become the bellwether for the election on August the 21st?

As reported in the BAY POST, Nelligen businessman Rick Patman feeds many Eden-Monaro voters with his “all-day breakfasts” but says his vote depends on what Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott feed him.

"I might go Labor, it depends how the ranga bullshits,” Mr Patman said, referring to Ms Gillard and her distinctive red hair.

“Abbott has given me nothing to swing to him.”

Mr Patman has issued an open invitation to Ms Gillard to attend happy hour at 5pm today at the Steampacket Hotel.

Mr Patman said he could be swung by changes to the health system. His son is an asthmatic and he has experienced what he calls “understaffed hospitals”.

The 46-year-old shop owner said he had not seen Eden-Monaro Labor MP Mike Kelly.

To read more about the coffee-drinking swinging voters, pick up your copy of the BAY POST.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

FINALLY! A better bus service to Canberra!


Want to go to Canberra with pick-up from home and drop-off at individual places in and around Canberra?

Call Rixon Bus Service on 44744243 or email Sue at malandsue@southernphone.com.au.

This new bus service leaves from the bus stop at the newsagency in Orient Street every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday at around 8.30 am and arrives at Canberra Airport at around 10.30 am and Jolimont Centre in the City Centre at 10.45 am.

It leaves Jolimont Centre for its return trip to the coast at around 4.30 pm.

The cost is $30 one-way or $55 if you return on the same day's bus in the afternoon (you've got more than five hours' shopping time!)

If you want an individual home pick-up, add $10 to the fare.

Monday, July 12, 2010

A typical Clyde River scene


Painted by local artist Ritchey Sealy

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Progress in Nelligen?

The Eurobodalla Shire Council on the New South Wales Far South Coast says its draft Villages Development Control Plan will help preserve the cultural heritage of key towns in the region.

The plan is now on public exhibition in Rick’s Nelligen Cafe, and submissions can be made until July 26.

Its aim is to preserve the cultural heritage of Nelligen, Bodalla, Central Tilba, Tilba Tilba, as well as the Tilba Conservation Area.

The Council's Strategy and Heritage Planner, Steve Halicki, says the plan will assist developers.

"To a certain degree the development control plan sets a vision for the development of those areas, and gives an expectation and certainty to developers what they can and can't do within those areas with their development," he said.

Council has booked the Nelligen hall for 4.00 to 7.00pm Tuesday 22 June for public discussion.

For more regional news, [click here].

Sunday, June 13, 2010

After a long and extinguished career ...

... I have been called to the bar!

Let's drink to that!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

We have new neighbours!

Richard and Wendy aboard the Seven Seas 37 ketch "Charon" anchored off "Riverbend" yesterday. They are from Hobart and will sail for tropical Queensland in a day or two. The best neighbours to have!

Richard taking a photo of their ketch from Riverbend

The four of us had dinner by the fireplace, washed it all down with mulled wine, and then started on our sing-a-long. Richard plays a mean honkytonk piano and I joined in with my squeezebox and it turned into a really great night.

[Click here] to read Richard and Wendy's sailing blog.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Don't spoil it by joining!

The Nelligen Yacht Club, Australia's most exclusive yacht club with a membership of just ONE, is up and running.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Nelligen Iron Man

Nelligen Iron(-ing) Man

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Another sale gone up in smoke

Remember Ye Olde Nelligen Store that was up for sale? Well, how much are you willing to pay for a pile of smouldering timber?

At 3 o'clock this morning Ye Olde Nelligen Store went up in smoke. It took more than two hours to control the blaze, which authorities say is not suspicious.

I guess this old webpage can now be consigned to history. [More]

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Absolutely Necessary Accessorial Luxury!


Padma has gone into mass production of her hand-crochetted mobile phone pouch, so if your little heart desires this

Absolutely Necessary Accessorial Luxury,

place your order here.

The above photo shows the buttoned-down version which I personally recommend as it takes a long time to open which means you miss most of the incoming calls and thus saves yourself a lot of irritation (especially handy if you are an undischarged bankrupt, habitual womaniser, shonky tradesman, or sell real estate in Tonga).

Monday, March 22, 2010

"When Greek meets Grecophile"

(more like a Κύκλωψ , if you ask me!)

Monday, March 15, 2010

Engine Room! Full Astern!

I just heard this morning that Holland America Cruise Lines have cancelled tomorrow's arrival of MS Volendam at Batemans Bay. The Volendam will now be stopping at Eden on Tuesday 16th March.