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March 2018 Volume 77

Fun at the Arboretum

Elphinstone Primary School grade five/six students visited the arboretum in December with Sue from ELMA. The
photo was featured in the Castlemaine Mail with an article about a funding boost for the local feature.


Articles and advertising for the June 2018 edition of the Elpho Info are due by
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All community contributions welcome.

For advertising prices and enquiries email

To book or pay for an ad, please speak to Gill at the Elphinstone General Store.

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Elpho Info Editorial
Well haven’t we been through the ringer the last few for the next edition to the Elpho Info email address, or if
months! Multiple wind storms with extensive damage you don’t have email, you can always submit a written
locally, particularly on the Taradale side. We’ve also copy to Gill or Dave at the Elpho General Store.
experienced a few fires with the problematic installation
of the wire barriers on the Calder proving a hot topic, If you’re on social media, remember to like our Facebook
both in the news and social media. We’re extremely page to stay informed in between editions:
lucky to have such exceptional emergency services in our
great town, notably the wonderful folk at the
Elphinstone Fire Brigade - thanks for keeping us safe! I’ve recently shared a link on the Facebook page to an
ABC article about local fire spotter Paul Leishman which
This edition of the Elpho Info features a graph of last has some interesting photographs to accompany the
year’s rain fall - fascinating stuff. Thanks again to Sylvia article.
Reeves for providing us with all the downpour statistics.
We also have a new column by naturopath Susan Lintott Amity Bradford,
on improving brain function naturally. Do let us know if Editor
there’s a particular topic you’re interested in Susan
covering in future editions.
As always, please continue to send in your contributions

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Elphinstone Land Management
Association (ELMA) Update
You will have noticed the claret ash trees in town doing Roadside Weeds & Pest Management program for the
well despite a very dry spell over summer. Claret ash or sixth consecutive year. It is through this investment and
Fraxinus oxycarpa 'Raywoodii' is a fast growing species our consistent approach to weed management that we
which is both frost and drought tolerant and fortunately, will succeed in our bid to eradicate weeds from our
we’ve had a couple of decent downpours which has roadsides. Our weed contractor, Marty Hyland will re-
meant we haven’t had to water them often over the last target weeds of national significance including cape
couple of months. Garden maintenance is ongoing in broom along the southern side of Diggers Way and gorse,
town with weeding and pruning of our garden beds taking blackberry and hawthorn through other areas of
place when required. Elphinstone. We have also applied for funding through
Landcare Victoria for weed management along the
As reported on the front page, we took some Elphinstone northern (railway) side of Diggers Way which is owned by
Primary School students to the arboretum late last year VicTrack and if successful, we will target the huge
for a visit and surprisingly, many of the students didn’t infestation of cape broom running the stretch of this
know the arboretum existed! It was a great way to roadside.
introduce many of the students to ELMA and give them an
opportunity to be involved with our latest project. Membership is $20 per year per household so if you’re
thinking of becoming a member, forms are available at
We did an exercise back in the classroom where the the Post Office. ELMA membership allows you to gain
students were asked to identify plants from photos and access and information to various landcare projects in the
descriptions given in the signs. There are seven signs in area (including work on private properties) such as
total with a summary of 26 different indigenous species revegetation, weed and pest control, citizen science
featured at the arboretum including the plants’ habit, (helping to develop information and reference
flowering and cultivation. We hope that with signs in brochures).
place, the arboretum will provide not only great natural
habitat, but also deliver an educational experience for the More information on ELMA can be found on our Facebook
local community as well as visitors to the area. Signs will page – Elphinstone Land Management Association.
be installed in the coming weeks with an official launch to
follow. Look out for details on the noticeboard. Sue McLennan
ELMA has been successful in obtaining a grant through
the Mount Alexander Shire Council as part of their

Elphinstone Progress Association Inc. (EPA) Update
Last year we put together a 2018 calendar made up of
photographs submitted by Elphinstone residents. We
had such a great response to the calendar. Thank you to
everyone who submitted photos, booked an advertising
spot, and/or bought the calendars. It has been so
successful we have decided to do it again for 2019. • To continue to advocate to Council to have the
kerb and pathway rejuvenated around the bus
Included in the cost of the calendar was the option for shelter area (a submission to include it in the next
an annual membership to the EPA. We managed to budget has been made; the result will be known in
increase out membership by 400%. Great stuff! Thank late 2018)
you to Mount Alexander Shire Council for the grant that • To have the signage around town upgraded (this
allowed us to trial the calendar risk free to the group. has been approved by VicRoads and Council and is
scheduled to be done soon)
In 2018 our main goals are: • To explore the opportunity to have the old
• To run an even more fun Karaoke Night in Sep/Oct Avenue of Honour in Wright Street re-planted in a
again joint effort with the Elphinstone Land
• To do a second Elphinstone calendar Management Association (ELMA)
• To get the bus shelter upgraded (PTV, Castlemaine • To remain open to other opportunities or
bus lines and Council agree – we just have to push concerns of residents if and when they arise!
for funding!)
• To get the area around the train crossing tidied up Our next meeting is scheduled for Thursday 19 April at
10:00am. Please come along if you have any ideas.

Improving Brain Function… Naturally
The causes of decreased memory and concentration are Coffee and cocoa (yes mochas may be a good for you!).
many and varied and differ throughout life stages. Factors Talk to your naturopath about whether or not this is a
that may influence cognition include diet, lifestyle, sleep good option for you as everyone is different, however
patterns and inflammation levels. generally speaking both coffee and cocoa have shown to
be excellent cognitive enhancers.
There are some fabulous evidence-based complementary
medicines that are great options for keeping your brain Rosemary increases memory and cognition both taken
health optimal, including: orally (due to its anti-oxidants) and also through smelling
it. Try using the essential oil or picking fresh rosemary to
Bacopa monnieri is considered the primary nerve tonic in have in your house or workplace.
ancient Indian medicine and it has been traditionally used
to improve memory and mental capacities, as a tonic to Yoga poses such as downward dog and warrior pose build
revitalise brain cells, to decrease anxiety and increase a strong, healthy prefrontal cortex and can protect your
longevity! In clinical trials in Australia, Bacopa has been brain against age-associated cognitive decline.
shown to significantly enhance memory performance in
seniors and to improve cognitive and behavioral Talk to your naturopath or other experienced health
parameters in children with ADHD including restlessness, professional about support for your memory or your
self-control and attention-deficit symptoms all being child’s attention disorder and don’t forget ;) to ask about
substantially improved. lifestyle and diet advice to assist your nervous system,
decrease inflammation and to help create good sleep
Ginkgo Biloba has been the subject of over 400 scientific patterns.
studies over the past 30 years, making it one of the most
studied herbal medicines. Therapeutic uses of Ginkgo Written by Susan Lintott who works from Healing Well in
include: improvement of cognitive impairment (especially Castlemaine and her home in Elphinstone. Ph 0401 764
age-associated), enhancement of cognitive performance 050, email - All enquiries welcome.
in adults and symptomatic treatment of various forms of

Phosphatidylserine (PS) is an important phospholipid

found in brain tissues and supplementation of it has
shown improvement in attention, verbal fluency and
memory in those with age-related cognitive decline.

Get to know your shire
School’s back so now is the perfect time for students Australian Bureau of Statistics data from 2006-2016. This
(and grownups!) to learn a bit more about Mount data can be displayed as graphs, tables or thematic maps
Alexander Shire. and can be easily printed, added to a document or
shared via social media.
Mount Alexander Shire Council now has an interactive
online profile where you can learn everything you ever The profiles are not only great for students, they’re also
wanted to know about the shire. invaluable if you’re looking to make decisions on
investment, starting or expanding a business, or just
You can find out things like: need to better understand who’s in your community.
• What location has the highest percentage of shire
residents born in the Netherlands? And by the way, Muckleford South has the highest Dutch
• How many people have a Bachelor Degree population, 25.3 percent of workers in the shire have a
qualification or higher? bachelor degree and higher, 0.12 percent of households
• How many families have six or more kids? have six or more kids and Tarilta has the highest
• What township has the highest percentage of percentage of households with four vehicles (with a
households with four or more vehicles? whopping 78.26 percent), followed by Barfold (63.64
The answers to these questions (and many more!) can
be found in Council’s interactive online REMPLAN Find out more at the Economic Development section of
community and economic profiles. Council’s website at
Understand the unique characteristics of our community
and economy and how they are changing over time with

A great way to reconnect and reboot
your mind & body, classes will
combine relaxation with a strong focus on building
strength & flexibility.

Tuesday evenings 7pm – 8.30pm at Elphinstone Primary

School during school terms - all levels welcome, from
beginners to advanced.

Please contact Sue on 0417 553 296 for more details.

A message from our Councillor
It’s been a long hot summer restore the roadside to a more respectable, peaceful
this year, as predicted. environment.
Although it’s always
tempting fate to speak of On the more orderly end of the scale of council and
such things, the level of fire community activities, Elphinstone and Taradale
activity has not matched community groups have been talking to council staff about
predictions, and hopefully improving the streetscape of their respective town
this will remain the case for centres. Elphinstone Progress Association took the lead in
the remainder of the fire this regard several years ago, with improvements to the
danger period. Most fires town centre being a priority in the Elphinstone
that have occurred locally Community Plan. The design that was developed and
have been the result of shared with the community requires re-levelling of the
sparks from machinery use, road surface outside the pub, a project which is
with operators failing to follow the expected precautions recognised to be in the too-expensive basket for the time
of having plenty of water on hand. It’s no good running to being. However there are other improvements which are
turn on a hose if a spark starts a fire in dry grass. Water is within realistic budget limits and which are being pursued,
needed by the bucket load, immediately. such as tidying up the areas around the bus stops and
railway line. Taradale Community Forum members
What have been beyond all expectations are the two recently had an initial meeting with a council staff
storms which hit Taradale and Elphinstone, Metcalfe and member to put together a set of priorities for the Taradale
Barfold on December 19 and February 10. I earnestly hope main street, as well as the north and south entrances to
that by the time this article is published we haven’t had the town.
storm number three! Local residents are all too aware of
the level and extent of the damage: hundreds of trees and The two towns, close neighbours, have very different
limbs down across roads and fences, in private gardens, issues associated with their central areas. While
paddocks and public reserves. Rooves damaged and in Elphinstone, tucked away from main roads, sometimes
some cases blown off the house. At least two cottages questions where its centre is: the pub and cenotaph or the
crushed by falling trees. Miraculously no one was injured. post office and reserve, Taradale as an ex-highway town
has the problem of a long straight road through its centre
The most urgent responses to the storm came from the which encourages travellers to speed through.
police, who guarded downed power lines, protecting the
public from accidently walking or driving across them, and Council has allocated funding in the current budget for a
council and emergency services using heavy equipment to designer to put together streetscape plans based on
clear trees off the roads. The SES acted quickly to clear community input for five small towns, including Taradale
trees from house rooves and driveways while residents and Elphinstone. Once completed, these draft plans will
talked to their insurance companies to find out what they go out to the broader community for comment and input.
would, and wouldn’t acknowledge as their responsibility. I’m confident that the work already done by the
Locals swapped stories of exasperation at their insurers’ Elphinstone Progress Association will be incorporated and
interpretations of their policies, the complications of built on, while Taradale will ultimately receive a plan
having damage assessments done. It could be an which can be used progressively to transform the main
interesting exercise in six months’ time to conduct a street to a more welcoming, attractive place. It’ll provide
survey of peoples’ experiences with their insurers. Would council with guidelines for future budget allocations and
any one company stand out as being the most helpful, support for grant applications from other sources.
understanding, generous? I suspect not.
Please note that my March listening post will be on the
Meanwhile, contractors engaged by the council, worked second Friday of the month, 9 March. I can also be
for many days to clear up the roadsides, cutting down contacted on 0466 004 628 or email
dangerous ‘hangers’ and whole trees too damaged to be if you wish to
safe, mulching roadside tree debris. Their work received arrange a meeting.
many compliments and voices of approval. VicRoads were
less enthusiastic about clearing up the old highway, parts Christine Henderson
of which looked like a war zone immediately after the first Coliban ward councillor
storm. I’m hopeful that arrangements can be made to

What’s happening at Elphinstone Primary School?
A warm welcome to our new families and all other
familiar faces as we gear up for another big year at
Elphinstone Primary. It has been fantastic to see all the
eager students ready to start and the enthusiasm is
pleasing. I’m sure the parents were just as pleased that
school has finally started again!

Some of our students are already making use of the

fallen trees as a result of some summer storms and
have built some elaborate cubby houses as pictured.
We also have a mobile gym visiting the school and the
highlight of the first week was the giant coloured

Brendan Stewart

Elphinstone Primary School

Wright Street Elphinstone
(03) 5473 3285

Rainfall by Sylvia Reeves
Rainfall for Elphinstone, Redesdale and Castlemaine - November to
December 2017 and January 2018.
Mean rainfall November December January

Castlemaine 48.1 40.6 40.3

Redesdale 41.4 37.5 34

Elphinstone 59 46 40.6

Rainfall 2017/18 November December January

Castlemaine 50.2 63 30.8

Redesdale 46.6 41.2 65.8

Elphinstone 33.75 93 49.5

The figures from Elphinstone come from the Western side of the locality. Figures for Harcourt are no longer
available so I have used the ones for Redesdale instead. The mean rainfall for is based on 25 years of rainfall


Bob Franze
(Dip Equine Dentistry)
Phone 0418 346 830

Prompt and reliable

service covering all areas

Elphinstone Playgroup
2017 was another year of creativity, fun and socialising Any children up to pre-school age and their parents are
for the children of Elphinstone Playgroup. The year always welcome. There are toys for the kids and coffee or
concluded with the usual excitement created by a special tea for the adults. We look forward to seeing you there!
visit from Santa.
For further details please contact:
Playgroup continues every Tuesday of the school term at Katie Mawson 0435 450 810 or
the Elphinstone Hall from 9:15am – 11:15am. Erin Downie 0407 401 406.

Residents advised to keep recycling

Mount Alexander Shire Council advises residents to - Avoid buying food with excessive packaging
continue recycling paper, cardboard, plastic, metal and - Use a keep cup for your next takeaway coffee
glass in their yellow-lidded bins. Council is working with - Take your lunch to work, or eat in
the contractor Wheelie Waste to better understand the - Minimise wrapping on school lunches
implications of the decision by Visy Recycling to suspend
some recycling agreements. For more information on recycling visit the Waste and
Recycling Services page on Council’s website at
Council’s waste and recycling collection will continue to
operate as normal. Items such as paper, cardboard,
plastic containers, aluminium, steel and aerosol cans and Upcoming Public Holidays
glass bottles and jars can be recycled through the yellow-
lidded bins. 12 March - Labour Day

30 March - Good Friday

Residents are encouraged to continue to recycle and
reduce the amount of rubbish they produce. Some 2 April - Easter Monday
simple tips include:
25 April - ANZAC Day
- Take a drink bottle with you rather than buying a bottle

Got a pile of tyres?
Abandoned tyres form a breeding ground for vermin,
tyres can decay and contaminate soil and groundwater,
and a tyre fire generates toxic smoke and is difficult to

EPA regulations allow storage of waste tyres if you have

a genuine use for them, but urges you to dispose of
unused waste tyres in landfill or at a recycling facility.

See for advice on what’s legal, and

if you suspect someone is illegally stockpiling, dumping
or burning old tyres, call EPA’s 24-hour hotline on 1300
Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) is EPA VIC (1300 372 842).
warning businesses and landholders of the hazards of
keeping piles of waste tyres.

Take care around storm-damaged trees

With more windy weather forecast this week, Mount Mr Ryan said many trees in the shire have been
Alexander Shire Council is urging residents to take care weakened from storms in December and more recently
and be aware of the dangers of storm-damaged trees. over the weekend.

Council’s Acting Emergency Management Coordinator “The weekend storm knocked many trees over roads in
Luke Ryan said people should be particularly careful and around Taradale, Metcalfe, Barfold and further
around trees with limbs hanging down, which are afield,” said Mr Ryan.
known as hangers.
“Council’s Works Team was kept busy around the clock
“Hangers can be branches of all sizes and may drop at clearing blocked roads and supporting volunteer
any time, which is why they are so dangerous,” said Mr agencies.
“We’d like to thank everyone who helped out and did
“Don’t ever stand under a hanger and if you do have such a great job responding so quickly,” said Mr Ryan.
one at your place make sure you get an arborist to
check it out. If you see hangers on roadsides or public land, or find a
tree blocking a road please call Council on 5471 1700.
“We also encourage people to get in touch with Council For help with storm clean on private land please contact
if they see any hangers alongside roads or in public the SES on 132 500.
spaces so we can investigate,” he said.

Regional Centre for Culture
As you will be aware, the Regional Centre for Culture in
2018 is an initiative of the Victorian Government
through Creative Victoria, in partnership with the Dja
Dja Wurrung Aboriginal Clans Corporation, Central
Goldfields Shire, City of Greater Bendigo, Hepburn Shire is now densely populated
and Mount Alexander Shire. The year’s activities have with performances, exhibitions, markets, festivals and
already kicked off with our official launch on more - it’s genuinely awe-inspiring to be able to observe
Wednesday 10 February in Bendigo. The the wealth of activities taking place in this inaugural
night's entertainment was drawn from all over the four Victorian Regional Centre for Culture. 2018 got going
participating municipalities, and drew couples, families with RCC-supported events Maldon Twilight Dinner and
and everyone else along for a party in Rosalind Park. Newstead Live. The RCC is also directly supporting
The highlight of the evening was a moving ceremony of Harcourt’s Applefest, the Taradale Mineral Springs
song and dance by Traditional Owners, the Dja Dja Festival and Arts Open. On March 3, one of the RCC’s
Wurrung and the announcement of YAPENYA, a key community events will take place in Newstead.
celebratory event that will be taking place on 17 Entitled Water Hole, this event will feature a parade
November. created by the local school children, a compliments
caravan, performances by local and other artists and a
We are delighted to be working closely with both Visit performance of In the Deep End by Asking for Trouble
Victoria and the ABC Central Victoria. You may have who will perform in the Newstead and District
heard the ABC's live outside broadcast from Rosalind Swimming Pool. The highlight is expected to be a
Park on 14 February during the afternoon drive program community dance-off featuring the volunteer
from 3pm to 4pm hosted by Fiona Parker. Visit Victoria committees of Newstead.
has committed to promoted four tourist itineraries
around region in March, June, August and November.
We are currently working to develop the
communications for these itineraries (known Pictured: Heart inflatable sculpture by Felipe Reynolds
as “Meander”) which will be focused on encouraging and Racquel Kerr in Bendigo's Rosalind Park
visits to stay in the region for 3+ nights and to move (Photography Raph Beh).
across the region sampling its cultural activities of all
kinds: food, arts activities, natural wonders and more.


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