As journalists, we search for the truth to report to you and sometimes it takes us to interesting places.
Jim Gainsford has been chasing this lead for a while, and when he pitched it at our news meeting, I knew immediately it would be a good yarn.
Jim tells us Oatley resident Cliff Crane's 25-year quest to prove the identity of A.B. 'Banjo' Paterson's The Man from Snowy River will be officially recognised in a biography of the famous bush poet. It is a good yarn wrapped up in a yarn, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. You might be surprised by Mr Crane's theory.
From the "I can't believe it" file, Jim brings us the shocking story of an elderly Riverwood couple forced to pay rent to live in their family home of 28 years after it was compulsorily acquired to build a car park partly funded under the federal government's controversial National Commuter Car Park Fund.
If you remember, this is the fund described by the Australian National Audit Office as "not appropriate" and "not designed to be open or transparent."
Incredibly, Federal Liberal MP David Coleman was contacted and would not answer any of the Leaders questions.
We chase stories for sure, but sometimes they find us, and we must react quickly to get it to our readers and find the deeper 'stuff' within a yarn.
This week, Murray Trembath had such a yarn when he told us of an echidna that caused a stir when it wandered into the Blackfish Cafe in Como Pleasure Grounds. As Murray does, he dug a bit deeper and found a broader story to tell.
Murray also tells us the Geographical Names Board is seeking community feedback on a proposal to create 11 new suburbs within Royal National Park in the Sutherland local government area. What do you think the suburb names should be?
This one made me do a little fist pump! Murray tells us common sense has prevailed and residents have won the battle to stop a 210-space commuter car park in Heathcote East.
Heathcote MP Lee Evans told the Leader, "It's too contentious, too hard and I am too old in the tooth to put up with this".
Tick one up for the power of the people and a strong local press.
Getting the kids back to school is a hot topic. Amongst the most talked about issues was how 2021 HSC students were disadvantaged by the COVID pandemic and how this would translate into exam results.
Everyone I speak with has an opinion on it.
Rather than speculate, Eva Kolimar reports on what actual HSC students in our readership think about their year and how they are handling exams. It is fascinating to read how our young people are tackling a most challenging time in their lives.
Eva also tells us how another school in our readership supported White Ribbon initiatives. The Deputy Principal of the school said the initiatives strengthened a culture of respect and equality.
After reading both yarns, I reckon I will quote Pete Townsend of 'The Who' and say, 'The Kids are Alright'.
Is it 'just a greenie' issue, or do the broader population care about global warming?
Our most recent Leader reader survey told us more than 75 per cent of the 500 readers that responded disagree with the current federal government's stance on climate change. The results may surprise you. So please tell us your thoughts and take the recent survey while you are there.
On that note, I'll go and have some breakfast and enjoy my Sunday. I hope you enjoy yours. I hope it is a day full of love, laughter, music and news.
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