More statues to honour the great
The Courier needs to get its parochial blinkers off, (RE: Hall of Fame, 14/10), and look at the bigger picture. Granted 'Plugger' Lockett was an awesome football player in Melbourne and Sydney, but to dismiss the likes of Jared Tallent OAM, a four time Olympic medallist, three time World Championship medallist, and current Olympic record holder as a mere aside in an opinion piece, and to ignore completely Steve Moneghetti, OAM, with his own swag of medals, records and world best times is perhaps an oversight, and possibly an insult. Just go and check his wikipedia entry for comparison, and then we can crowdfund for a 'Mona in Bronze' at St Patricks Point. It may even rival Ballarat's Prime Ministers Walk for tourism appeal.
Matthew Gibney, Golden Point
Impressive literary line-up
I believe applause is due for the impressive program devised for next weekend’s inaugural Ballarat Writers Festival. The program includes best selling and award winning authors, local writers, and noted experts on current social topics. Workshops for adults and for children are also listed.
The many authors include Marija Pericic 2017 Vogel award winner, ‘Australia’s Hottest literary couple’ - Anne Buist and Graeme Simsion [The Rosie Project] whose jointly authored Two Steps Forward is due to become a film, along with Sofie Laguna and Ballarat’s Mark Nethercote. Senator Sam Dastyari will discuss his autobiography with social commentator Van Badham
Current social topics covered include: Klaus Neumann on the issue of refugees, Rodney Syme on Dying with Dignity, Dennis Altman on LGBT rights Nayuka Gorrie on Recognition or Treaty and Don & Patricia Edgar on reinventing middle age.
Several sessions relate to the Festival theme ‘Democracy’; Judith Brett discussing her recent book on Alfred Deakin, Jenny Hocking on the Queen’s role in the Whitlam dismissal and David Astle discussing the word Democracy. A panel on ‘Fixing Democracy’ will involve Sam Dastyari, Judith Brett, Jenny Hocking, Dennis Altman, Nayuka Gorrie and Van Badham.
Visit the ballaratwritersfestival.com for the full program.
Stuart Kelly, Ballarat
Greater attention needed for Disabled facilities
Much emphasis is placed on encouraging tourists to our country, yet reports indicate that Australia falls behind in providing necessary facilities for travellers in wheelchairs and the many who cope with disabilities.
While we see some improvement, more attention should be given to easier accessing of cars in parking areas. A percentage of new apartments in tourist areas and in general should be set aside to cater for their basic special needs of added space etc.
Greater care should be taken in the areas of public buildings and walkways so that they can be negotiated with ease, equally by all travellers in stopovers or in transit. I applaud the efforts of Save our Station members and all residents who passionately plead for an improved outcome for a transport hub pleasing in practicality, heritage retention and future travel needs, including these special amenities at Ballarat’s unique railway precinct. A city which can tick all these boxes in such a big venture is worthy of commendation. The investment is so welcome, but the big picture is needed here not just a ’glossy modern now’ project. It is sad to have this conflict in the planning, as all agree action is urgently needed.
June Johnson, Alfredton
Ballarat’s future airspace
Your article about the growth of Ballarat prompts me to say that the planners should think about an area for a public airport, to at least cover inter city flights. Ballarat is ready for such an airport and maybe we will have one before Bendigo does.
Gerald Mallon, Ballarat