Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Music to Re-member 14/12/19

Want to catch up with some neighbours before the end of year? The Music to Re-member afternoon on Saturday 14th December is being put on for that very purpose, a chance to catch up with familiar faces in our community space, Progress Hall.

The 4hr musically-motivated friendly will have lots of opportunities for cuppas & catching up, moments of making musical memories and dulcet tones to donate to.

The doors will be open from 1:30pm and you can drop in and put a few items in the donation buckets on your way to somewhere, renew or join the CPPA or stay for the whole afternoon and be lyrically lifted.

The Program

The November Chronicle has performer details.

1:30-2:00 Doors open -people arriving/decorating tables, community catchup and cuppa

2:00- 2:40 - Toronto Chorale (40min)

2:40- 2:50 -*Carol-Oke (10min)

2:50-3:30 Clyde St (40min)

2:40- 2:50 -*Carol-Oke (10min)

3:40 -4:00 One Voice Mob- community choir- 10-15 min

2:40- 2:50 -*Carol-Oke (10min)

4.10- 4:40 - Clyde Street band (30min)

4:40 -4:50 -*Carol-Oke (10min)

4:50-5:25 Clyde Street band (35min)

5:15-5:30 Thanks for coming- donations (15min)

*The carol-oke is at a minimum a seasonal song played on a CD in the background and optimally a sing along with someone leading the song. It provides background between change overs, time to chat and refresh the cuppa, go to the loo or donate to a cause.

The Causes

The artists are giving their time for free and have nominated their favourite causes; 
  • The charity of choice for the ClydeStreet Band is The Soul Café who do more than just serve a meal, their ultimate mission is to see vulnerable cafe guests placed on a path towards increased safety, health and purpose.
  • The Toronto Chorale donations will assist with the costs of music and materials needed to grow a local community choir.
  • One Voice Mob are raising funds to send their choir overseas for a masterclass and recording session in South Africa with multi award winning acapella group ‘The Soil’.

Local Causes that are being supported are

The Community

Music to re-member is about our community, it’s an opportunity to join the CPPA and TASNG. Membership is a show of support of the activities of the groups, the majority of members are non-active supporters, but the membership is vital to be able to represent the community when advocating for action or grant funding. You can download a membership form here.

Community is about sharing and we invite all attendees to bring a plate of food to share for the rolling afternoon tea.

The festive season is about giving and we’ll be giving a locally grown Casuarina to anyone who wants to fortify their foreshore.


There are still seats available and an RSVP will greatly aid in setting up the hall before hand.

You can book a seat or two or several online or sms or ring Suzanne on 0438596741.

Deck the Halls

Activities at Progress Hall are on the rise for 2020. A new art group has started up, the Toronto Chorale is hoping to expand their chorus and provide regular meetings (come along and see them at the Music to re-member event) and yoga will continue.

Tracy from the Yoga Circle shares the background to the enduring yoga group.
2020 sees Yoga come into its 12th consecutive year at our local hall, building a lovely community of well-practiced yoga students. Alongside the physical yoga practices, we incorporate relaxation and meditation; breathing practices; stretch and strengthening; increasing flexibility; stress-reducing lifestyle strategies and connection to a warm, supportive community of people. We believe in using the wisdom of yoga as a foundational blueprint to lasting health.

Our wish for you is that you create new patterns of health and wellbeing that enable you to fulfil your potential, whatever your walk of life, dreams or desires. Living well means honouring the aspects of the life that you love by taking time to focus on the important things in your life. We’re here to guide and support you in that process!

Our most popular classes are held regularly on a Monday and Friday morning 8.30 – 10.00am at Progress Hall. We also offer evening classes at different times throughout the year.

Our 2020 classes resume from Monday 13th January. What a great way to kick start your New Year! For an introductory complimentary class please present the ad in this Chronicle. Your FREE class is limited to one per person. Expires end of February 2020. Lessons are offered purely on a pay as you go basis.

For full details please visit or find us on Facebook. Further enquiries please call Tracy 0412 231461 or email

DA’s In Play at December 2019

It’s that time of year when major developments are submitted for community comment just as everyone is winding down for the year…and there are some big ones on display at Carey Bay. If you want to do some community giving, a final letter for the year to your local representatives whose decisions shape our community would be a substantial gift. Please consult Council's Application Tracking website for details.

Here's a list of Councillor contacts

DA/419/2018 114-120 Cary Street -124 Dwellings

Invitations have gone out to give interested people the opportunity to talk directly to the Hunter and Central Coast Regional Planning Panel on the proposed 6-story development at 114-120 Cary Street, Toronto (next to Maccas). The event is 11/12/19 at 4pm in the Council Chambers.

You must register to speak by contacting the Planning Panels Secretariat before 4pm Monday 9 December 2019 on 02 8217 2060 or 

The mixed-use development includes a Residential Flat Building with 124 dwellings above 2872m2 commercial premises and two levels of basement carparking. The proponent has committed to additional off-site works including road widening of Arnott Ave, a cycleway and relocation of power lines.

DA/1692/209 Residential Care Facility & Demolition – 36 Laycock Street

Anglican Care has lodged their DA to demolish the Aged Care Facility (not the self-contained units) and rebuild on the existing footprint whilst retaining the mature corridor of trees on their southern boundary.

The design seeks to minimise the building bulk, cut and fill by breaking up the overall mass into four ‘wings’ radiating from central common facilities, and placing lower ground level parking under the northern and north western wings. Two care levels are provided over a parking level.

Some of the features are; 126 private rooms with ensuites, common areas (lounge, dining, activities rooms etc), day therapy areas (gym, salon, prayer room, treatment room etc), semi-basement car parking consisting 56 spaces, 15 at grade car parking spaces, café, entry / administration area (including new reception, offices, meeting rooms amenities etc).

DA/1865/2017 22 dwellings- 20 Laycock Street

The proposal to construct 22 units at 20 Laycock (behind the Carey Bay preschool) has

been revised and is on display till 15th December for community feedback. 

A letter has been drafted and is available for download and personalisation to assist the community to comment during this busy period.

The re-notification addresses the following issues: stormwater management so as not to burden the preschool with the site’s drainage, the retention of a tree corridor to support the movement of local wildlife and foraging habitat, targeted flora surveys to determine if threatened species were present, privacy impacts of adjacent residents and preschool, non-discriminatory accessibility, the visual impact on the community, parking and service area design, waste management plans and erosion & sediment control.

This DA is being put forward for the purposes of selling the land with an approved DA.

Although some revisions have been made from the previous application, there are several issues outstanding that conflict with community expectations at the apparent expense of financial considerations. A development such as this can be better designed so as to provide more green space, shared facilities and sustainable technologies even if the number of proposed units is reduced and their positioning modified.

Following are some of the concerns with the revised plans.

Retention of Corridor: Council officers state there is a need for a 8-10m wide corridor to provide security into the future and functionality and for foraging resources for a number of fauna species. The developer is proposing 2-5m. Only 7 trees of the 72 originally on the block are proposed to be left (many were taken out previously). Climate change elevates the importance of retaining habitat connectivity across the landscape for wildlife and avoid genetic inbreeding associated with isolated populations, the latter which also affects plants.

Privacy and topography: Council’s Landscape Assessment identifies units adjacent to the preschool being 2m above existing ground level with fencing providing no privacy and the site planning not responding to the topography of the site. Council is also recommending 1m wide landscaping along the access driveway to reduce the amenity impacts on the preschool.

Preschool safety: The developer states that the safety of children in the adjacent childcare centre is ‘of much less concern than many such situations’ such as heavy traffic in inner city commercial business districts. However, good planning should address such issues in advance and recognise their importance for the local community.

Visual Impact and community character: The developer describes the visual impact of the development as being consistent with ‘the emerging density character of the area’. However, there is only a small pocket of medium density zoning in Carey Bay. The one development, with minimal landscaping, adjacent to the shops does not constitute a trend and has not softened in the decade since completion. The area surrounding the development is low density housing on large bushland blocks, reinforcing the desirability of maintaining corridors.

Accessible units: The developer has designed ‘round-about’ style accommodation for their two accessible units located in the centre of the complex encircled by the internal access road, a poor design element for those with mobility challenges, a consequence of too many units being proposed for the site.

Energy Efficiency: The proposal only meets minimum energy efficiency requirements. More thoughtful design with perhaps little extra cost should be considered to incorporate best practice for sustainability, e.g. insulation for reduced heating and cooling and PV installation.

Bulk Scale and Size: An important outcome sought from such a medium density is also to ‘maintain and enhance the residential amenity and character of the surrounding area’. The bulk, scale and size of the current DA does not allow for this important consideration with no community space, very little green space and mostly hard surfaces.

What’s happening at Bath Street?

On 25 November Councillor Harrison formally requested an update on the actions taken and planned for the Bath St site, following the decision to defer further work on the multistorey development. All we want for Christmas is an update and a timeline to alleviate cynicism.

Want to be a dead tree detective?

There’s a Citizen Science project happening to collect observations of dead or dying
trees… and there seems to be quite a few about our community.

It's easy! If you notice dead or dying trees, upload a photograph with date and location. All you need is a smartphone camera with GPS. 

There are resources on the website to determine possible cause of death.

This survey project is seeking to understand the distribution of areas of un-natural tree deaths and their causes, as well as the species most prone to different causal factors.

Water for our Wildlife

The current major drought, which began in 2017, is starting to be felt closer to home with water restrictions recently being put in place. Our bushland wildlife however has been on water restrictions for quite a bit longer.

Local wildlife carer, Catherine Wroe, is seeing lots of dehydrated birds coming into care as they are not getting enough moisture from the food available. If you’ve been for a walk in our bushland recently it’s obvious that there is very little moisture about, leaves and limbs are being shed, mature trees turning up their toes, the soil is dry and drifting without moisture to keep it together.

Catherine has offered up some tips on how to care for our local wildlife.
  • Put out water in shallow dishes, both up high and down low and in the shade if possible. If you don’t have shallow dishes include a stick or two so smaller animals can get out if they slip in.
  • Keep your cats and dogs inside, especially at night. This lets the wildlife get a drink relatively risk free.
Other tips from include;
  • Covering your pool avoids animals drowning and also reduces evaporation, saving you money
  • Keeping an emergency care kit on hand; water, blanket , box and wildlife carer number...Catherine Wroe 0412 093 030
Signs of heat-stressed animals include;
  • Nocturnal animals like possums out during the day
  • Birds or other animals showing loss of balance, collapse, confusion or panting
  • Tree dwelling animals on the ground

Toronto Areas Sustainable Neighbourhood News Dec 2019

Picnic in Park

A great time was had by all at the Toronto foreshore “Picnic in the Park” on 29/11/19. We listened to Connor Wink singing and appreciated the cultural experience of Chinese Dancing. A drumming workshop for the children and adults filled the air with booming beats and the face painter was kept busy furnishing faces with decorative designs. Thank you to everyone that came down to the community picnic. The next picnic is being planned to celebrate Harmony Day, 21st March 2020.

TASNG now has a facebook page where you can keep up to date with the goings-on of the group.

Awaba Road Welcome Garden

On Friday 29 November, a keen crowd of local residents gathered by Awaba Road on the western outskirts of Toronto. The occasion was the unveiling of a sign and the opening of a roadside garden, a vision put forward by Lois Simpson of the Toronto Area Sustainable neighbourhood group (TASNG) over two years ago, to beautify and enhance the appeal of this gateway to Toronto for travellers coming off the M1.

Representatives from TASNG, Toronto Rotary Sunrise, Lions Club of Toronto, Lioness Club of Toronto and Toronto and Districts Garden Club combined to complete this project to improve the site. Today, a native plant garden is becoming well established. The selected plants are hardy, low-maintenance and drought-tolerant. Thanks to Hymix’s water donations they have had a flying start in harsh conditions.

The newly-installed sign is also cultural recognition of the Awabakal Nation, sporting a photo of a sea eagle, Biraban, often sighted soaring above the shores of the lake, and a local totem.

Community support with planning, organising, labour and finance enabled the project to reach fruition. Friday’s celebration was the culmination of many hours of volunteer work preparing and planting the site. We were privileged to have MP Greg Piper and Mayor Kay Fraser attend our event and unveil the sign. Everyone agreed that this project has been a great collaborative endeavour, bringing people together to improve their town and enhance community spirit.

We thank Origin, Centennial Coal and the Garden Club for financial support.

Local Landcarers recognised

The Environmental Excellence in Landcare (EEL) Awards were bestowed upon several deserving local individuals at the Landcare end of year celebration on 29/11/19. 

Jean Austen and Wendy Davidson were awarded the Local Legend Award for a landcarer who has made a regular and colossal contribution for more than two years.

Threlkeld Reserve Guardian* Jean met all the criteria with flying colours.
  • Works regularly on their project - Jean started landcaring in 1998 and although she’s slowed down she hasn’t stopped.
  • Motivates their group, Jean’s Buschcare In Threlkeld on Thursday team raised the landcare bar and introduced weekly landcaring in our community.
  • Implements best practice natural resource management - at Threlkeld Reserve Jean was insistent that the best possible approach to landcare be implemented to ensure the integrity of the high conservation values of the reserve. Under the previous local planning instruments Threlkeld Reserve had the same environmental status as a national park due to the exceptional bushland qualities of the reserve.
  • Shares their knowledge and experience – Jean and the BITT crew investigated the impacts of leaving lantana on site, first raised awareness of the local Squirrel Glider population and enthusiastically documented and shared their findings.

Wendy Davidson’s contribution included starting up Fishing Point landcare in 2000, joining the Toronto Landcare care crew for a couple of years and assisting with their transformation to Lake Macquarie Landcare Network and regularly attending CPPA landcare sessions from 2015.
L-R Lois, Jean, Suzanne, Robyn, Wendy
Lois Simpson received a 10 Years Service Award, which is granted to someone whose dedication to landcare is an inspiration to everyone. Over the past decade Lois has definitely inspired with her motivational and inclusive style, she has headed the Lake Mac Landcare Volunteer Network for the past three years and maintains two landcare sites at Abre Close and Lions Park, as well as being a local guardian* of Gurranba and Burnage and attending the weekly local landcare sessions, as Lois so aptly puts it “Landcare is a lifestyle choice”.

Suzanne Pritchard received a 20 years of service award for dedication to Landcare andbeing an inspiration to everyone, as well as the ‘Soaring with eagles Award, which is given to a landcarer who has made a regionally significant contribution. Suzanne’s links to the local landcare movement are extensive, she formed the Progress Association landcare group in 1995, one of the first in the City, was part of the team that established the Lake Macquarie Landcare Network and has delivered major landcare projects in Warners Bay and here at Coal Point. Suzanne is a guardian* of Stansfield and Hampton St Link reserves as well as a regular landcarer.

(*coordinates the landcare sessions for the reserve)

Recycle Right during the Festive Season

Planet Ark has published the 5 worst recycling MISTAKES that Aussies make:

Mistake # 1. Putting recycling items in plastic bags in yellow recycling bins. Plastic bags should go to Redcycle Bins at the front of Woolworths/Coles.

Mistake # 2. Putting toughened glass as in glass crockery and window glass and broken glass in yellow bins. Sorry not allowed! It can cause the whole load to be rejected

Mistake #3. Bamboo, wood cutlery/chopsticks can not being recycled, reuse them or use metal. Say no to them when ordering takeaway food. Putting plastic cutlery and straws in the yellow bin is allowed in Lake Macquarie though!

Mistake # 4. Biodegradable and compostable packaging items CAN’T be put in the recycling yellow bin. It’s off to landfill for theese items

Mistake # 5. Beverage containers made of liquid paperboard and long-life, foil-lined beverage containers CAN be recycled in yellow bins. In fact, these beverage containers less than 1 litre can go into the Return and Earn machines!

Simple changes we can make to make sure RECYCLING gets better for our environment!