Frustration from NSW Police Association Central Hunter branch over no new Cessnock Police Station

NSW Police Minister Troy GrantThe local police union branchhas accused the NSW Government of “mixed messages” over a potential new police station at Cessnock.
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The frustration comes fromthegovernment’sproposal to “re-engineer” thelocal force, by merging Maitland into the Port Stephens command and Cessnock into the Hunter Valley.

The restructureis expected to put more policeon the ground, byreducing upper management.

Local police believedthe move would also lead to improved infrastructure, particularly an upgrade to the aging station at Cessnock.

But Police Minister Troy Grant told Fairfax Media therewere no plansfor a new station at Cessnock.

“The NSW Police Force advises there are no current plans to build a new police station in Cessnock as minor remedial works were completed earlier this year in order to upgrade the station area,” he said.

Mr Grant’s comments have left local police fuming.

“It’s extremely disappointing,” NSW Police Association Central Hunter branch chairman Mitch Dubojski said.

“During recent discussions we were under the impression there would be a fit-for-purpose building constructed within in the Cessnock district. We’re getting mixed messages.”

Cessnock Police Station

Mr Grant said the restructure wasabout providing the community with a police force that was “flexible, nimble, well-resourced and best placed to address current and future policing needs”.

But Mr Dubojski said police could not service the community properly with the current resources.

“They talk about future proofing, but I don’t see how working in a building that is dilapidated is future proofing,” he said.

Under the restructureCessnock is set to receive a boost to its front line, as more officers from the Central Hunterare expected to be moved across into the new-look Hunter Valley command,which currently has headquarters in Muswellbrook.

Cessnock MP Clayton Barr saidCessnock wouldbecome a “significant epicentre” if it joins the Hunter Valley command.

Cessnock MP Clayton Barr

“The Cessnock LGA would then make up two-thirds of the population of the Hunter Valley command,” he said. “But if they send more police to Cessnock, where are they going to put them?”

Mr Dubojski said if more officers were moved to Cessnock, the force wouldhave to use temporary buildings, such as demountables.

Mr Barr and Mr Dubojski bothsaid the Cessnock station wasnot fit for the purposes of modern policing.

Mr Barr remainedhopeful the re-engineering process would force the government to build a newstation.

“We need to bite the bullet and re-build Cessnock,” Mr Barrsaid. “The re-engineering might be the tipping point.”

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Rugby sevens: Hunter women excited at challenge of playing Fiji

BIG-GAME PLAYER: University’s Mel Howard will be key to Hunter’s chances at the Central Coast International Sevens this weekend. Picture: Marina NeilHUNTER do not boast the size and experience of the big-name women’s teams but coach Will Skully is confident they have the speed to stretch the best at the Central Coast Sevens this weekend.
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Hunter, boosted by the inclusion of n representative Hannah Southwell, have been draw in Pool D alongside Stars 7s (US development side), Fiji and Sydney University.

Hunter ready to tackle Fiji TweetFacebook Sevens heavenMel Howard, Hannah Southwell and FRances Afeaki playing for New England University in the National Universities series. “Sevens is a funny game,” Skully said. “You just need to string some good minutes on the field and anything can happen.Last year we led twice in a game. We are certainly looking forward to havinga crack at Fiji, but realistically Sydney Uni is probably the game we have the biggest chance of wining. If the Stars girls are a bit jet-lagged for their first game on Saturday, anything can happen.We will be relying on speed. We don’t have a big forward pack but we have a bit of x-factor with Mel Howard and Frances Afeaki.”

Southwell, Howard and Afeaki played for the University of New England in the recently completed n UniSeries.

“Hanna has experience in the Aussie program and along with Mel and Frances did well for New England,” Skully said.

SEVENS HEAVEN: Hannah Southwell (centre) alongside fellow Hunter products Brydie Parker and Layne Morgan before playing for at the Commonwealth Youth Games. Picture: Marina Neil

The women’s squad has been training alongside the Hawthorne Club boys’ program and includes emerging talent.

“We have a couple of under-18s who have made the step up, twins Nicole and Leilani Nathan,” Skully said. “They are a little bit nervous but I am 100 per cent in what they can do.”

Hunter made the semi-finals at the Bowral and Mudgeetournaments.

Hunter: Annika Jamieson, Mel Howard, Nicole Nathan, Leilani Nathan, Hannah Southwell, Teagan Miller, Frances Afeaki, Maddison Ingram, Viana Bainivalu, Ashlee Crebert, Ashlee Williams, Laura Rapley.

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Stranger Things: a year later and no less confounding

The preview screener of the first episode of the second season of Stranger Things comes with more paperwork than most Sydney property purchases, and a list of subjects which are on the spoiler list.
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In truth, in 2017, spoilers are bad business anyway but it does mean that wading into this episode prior to its general release is a risky business given the ground is peppered with spoiler mines and there’s enough of a layer of cliche horror fog wafting around to keep every step uncertain.

The episode picks up on October 28, 1984 – roughly a year after the events of season one of Stranger Things – and you don’t need a calendar to know that we’re opening just a few days ahead of Halloween, in the narrative, and in real life.

As signalling goes, it’s not subtle, and the first hint that what is to follow will lean more on John Carpenter, the filmmaker who made the iconic Halloween in 1978, more than others in the multitude of influences which permeate every frame of Stranger Things.

If you have not seen the first season – and truly, if you have not, then what on earth are you doing here? – the rough summary goes something like this: in 1983, in the small town of Hawkins, Indiana, an unseen force is unleashed and seemingly abducts an 12-year-old local boy, Will Byers (Noah Schnapp).

Will’s friends – Mike (Finn Wolfhard), Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo) and Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin) – set out to find him but instead find a girl named Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), while his mother, Joyce (Winona Ryder), receives a disturbing phone call from a voice which sounds like her sons.

Throw in a government conspiracy, a monster writ large from the pages of the Dungeons and Dragons “Monster Manual” and stir madly.

The second season steps up the pace gently, without losing its firm grip on the very specifically dated narrative speed of the first season. In that sense this plays a little like Mad Man: an intentionally anachronistic show using an intentionally dated sense of scene structure and dialogue speed to help you slip back into the groove.

At the same time it is unmistakeable that Stranger Things, born into uncertainty and the whim of an audience whose curiosity was piqued by a little show with no marketing spend, is returning a blockbuster. The action is dialled up, and there is a slew of additions to the cast, notably Paul Reiser and Sean Astin.

The heart of the show – a love letter to 1980s cinema and the auters who made it – is still there, beating loudly, though the sinister uncertainly and subcutaneous horror of John Carpenter’s work seems more front and centre this year than the cleaner, more universal style of, say, Spielberg’s E.T.

What is nice, though, is that Stranger Things begins as it means to go on: with an unnerving mystery wrapped up in a conundrum. Much of it is pure Macguffin though, as this particular buffet offers a raft of tonal and thematic side dishes which are in every way as delicious as the main course.

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Quiet please … welcome to the true Newcastle cinema experience

FILM NOIR: Loud eaters are just the tip of the choc-top in this city’s cinema experiences.OPINION: TAKE a bow Novocastrians. For we are surely the nation’s most annoying cinema audiences.
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We’re fortunate when it comes to movie admission prices in Newy. Competition between the big chains means we can go to a reasonably newish cinema at one of the complexes in the burbs and see a movie for around $10.

Sydney’s dedicated cinephiles can pay double that and then some.

And parking is free for three hours at the shopping centres. Although I copped a $10 fee at Charlie for overstaying the four-hour limit when I stupidly grabbed lunch before watching Ryan Gosling play Harrison Ford’s carer in Blade Runner 2049. It ran for an unnecessary 164 minutes.

On the Sunshine Coast last month I was slugged $19 for admission to a damp and dank petri dish for an early afternoon screening of a film I could only bare for 40 minutes, before being overcome with an urge to gouge my eyes from their sockets.

Last week I ventured to the Tower Cinemas in the city. Compared to the dream factories at the shopping centres, the Tower has seen better days in my view. I don’t find the seats comfortable, parking is … well good luck with that … and non-discountedtickets can cost upwards of $15. I guess Tower audiences without spcouponsget whacked a premium for … well … er … whatever. I hope they get revitalised soon.

I spotted a group of loud-talkers ahead in the queue – one of whom was hoovering down a Macca’s burger and sucking on a large thick shake – buying the biggest available popcorn and the biggest available soft drink plus choc-top ice-creams.

Poking out the top of one of the group’s bag was a mothership chip packet housing a dozen smaller packets of chips.

The loud-talkers are like many Novocastrians who use the cinema to continuously eat and drink for 120 plus minutes, only stopping to edge their bottoms within centimetres of your face on the mission to relieve their stretched bladders of litres of coke.

I plonk myself into one of the Tower’s ye olde worldy, slidey, sinky vinyl chairs toward the front of the cinema where I foolishly assumed I would be immune from the imminent sound tsunami promised by the impending munchfest.

As if guided by satellite, the five-some honed-in on my “please don’t sit near me” vibe and parked themselves directly behind. I possess an inexplicable magnetic-like ability to attract the noisiest cinema attendees.

Movie has already started, too late to move. Let the open mouth chewing, the packet rustling, the drink slurping, loud whispering, shoe removing, belching and mobile phone checking festival commence.

No longer am I transported to another place and time while suspending disbelief. I can’t tune out.

Every slurp, every rustle, makes me feel a bit more like Michael Douglas in Falling Down.

There’s nothing to do except leave.

I once asked a young man and his partner to please stop talking at a Glendale cinema and he told me he’d shoot me “in the guts” if I “didn’t f*$# off”. I had no reason to think he was exaggerating. I f*$#ed off.

Other Novocastrians tell me that the cinema is a communal experience and you just have to wear it.And they also tell me the only thing worse than Newcastle cinema-goers is the whinger who thinks the cinema is his own lounge-room and “unreasonably” expects others to be quiet.

Twitter @paul_scott_ [email protected]苏州夜总会招聘

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Cricket: Young Lion gets chance to roar

MEREWETHER captain Simon Moore noticed a major improvement after Zac McGuigan returned from a tour of England with the NSW Combined High School in the winter.
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VALUABLE: Newcastle will lean on Pat Darwen’s experience against Randwick-Petersham on Sunday.

The batting all-rounder followed that up with an unbeaten 114 against Belmont in second grade a fortnight ago.

And with Pat Darwen unavailable for the one-day clash against Toronto on Saturday, Moore believedthe time was right to hand the teenager a first-grade debut.

“He is a good kid and has always shown a lot of promise,” Moore said. “He benefited from going away with the NSW CHS side during the winter. He got 100 in second grade, is a very good fielder and is pretty useful with the ball too. He opens in seconds but will bat five or six tomorrow.”

McGuigan, whose father Lyle played first grade at Southern Lakes and is captain of Merewether’s A-Grade City and Suburban side, said he was ‘excited but a bit nervous’ ahead of his debut.

NSW CHS played nine games, winning five, in a 24-day tour in July.

“I learned a lot on the tour and it has helped my game,” McGuigan said

At stake on Saturday is a place in the Tom Locker final. The Lions top Pool A on 25 points and only need to beat the winless Kookaburras to progress to the decider on November 12.

“The way the table is, if we win, we should be through,” Moore said. “The points system, I don’t think is very fair, but that is a topic for a different day. We were lucky enough to get on last week and earn a couple of bonus points which helped us a lot.”

However, Moore is taking nothing for granted.

“In these 40-over games, it is like anup-sized meal of T-20,” Moore said. “It is a bit hit and miss. If you play poorly you will get beaten.”

In other Pool A matches, Belmont host Wallsend and Waratah are at home to Newcastle City.

Only a point separates Pool B leaders University (22 points) from Charlestown (21).

The Students, who are the defending champions, meet Wests (20) at Uni No.1. Charlestown welcome strugglers Stockton to Kahibah Oval. Hamwicks hosts Cardiff-Boolaroo in the other game.

Darwen may be unavailable for Merewether, but the former NSW Country off-spinning all-rounder is a welcome boost for Newcastle’s opening round of the NSW Premier T20 competition against Randwick-Petersham at Coogee Oval.

“Pat has played a lot of Sydney first grade and is comfortable in that environment with both bat and ball,” Newcastle coach Shane Burley said.

In another bonus, former NSW spearhead Burt Cockley will also play against a Randwick outfit including Hunter trio Nathan Price, Jason Sangha and Riley Ayre.

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