Hobart Happenings August 2021
by Stephanie Williams
Big Wong BBQ (97A Elizabeth St, Hobart) has opened, serving Chinese BBQ meat – BBQ duck, roast pork, char siu pork – as well as rice dishes, soups and noodles. Drink Tasmania (Shop 4/50 Bridge Street, Richmond) is now open, serving the very best of Southern Tasmania’s premium wines, whisky, gin and other craft beverages. The Stock Market (8 Brooke Street, Hobart) are now serving up Allpress coffee, housemade coffee miso caneles and Pigeon Whole Bakers treats from their cute window weekdays from 7:30am. Love cake? You might enjoy a slice of Japanese souffle cheesecake or Taiwanese castella cake from Glace Penguin Dessert. If you’re after a special occasion cake, there’s a new option in Bellerive with Crazy for Cake (Shop 7A, Bellerive Quay Shopping Centre) opening. Get some energy out at Kidz Central (Shop 11, Channel Court Shopping Centre), Kingston’s newest play centre. You’ll find them at selected markets or order via their Facebook page. Keep an eye out on the Moonah main drag for The Moonah Hotel and Cellars, which is currently being refurbished in the old Mustard Pot site. Also…keep an eye out soon for the new Potsticker Dumplings (84 Main Road, Moonah) sister store in Moonah, in the old Coogan’s store. Like Japanese? Head to Souta (2/73-75 Main Rd, Moonah) which is newly opened next to Sarinya Thai. It’s open every day except Sunday, from 11am-2:30pm and then 5:30pm-7:30pm. The Moonah offering is definitely heating up. The TAG Art Gallery (60 Murray St, Hobart) has opened with the launch exhibition Continuum. Incredibly it’s the thirty-third solo exhibition for Australian visual artist Gemma Lynch-Memory.
SPORTS (RORTS) GRANTS FOR SPORTS CLUBS IN TASSIE
Grants of up to $500,000 are available to support sporting clubs and associations in getting Tasmanians more active. The $10 million Improving the Playing Field Program provides financial help to upgrade amenities at sporting facilities around Tasmania, allowing them to cater for all participants. The developments could include change rooms, toilets and shower facilities, accessibility, lighting, security, fencing and scoreboards. Applicants must contribute at least 15 percent of the total project cost. Applications for the small grants stream close on 6 September, and applications for the large grants stream close on 25 October 2021. More information about the program, including eligibility, guidelines and how to apply can be found at www.communities.tas. gov.au/csr
COST OF DOING BUSINESS IN HOBART INCREASES WITH SINGLE USE PLASTIC BAN
While there’s no debate that compostable food containers benefit the environment, how is the recent single use plastic ban by the Hobart City Council affecting local businesses? With COVID restrictions, lower tourist numbers and winter in general, Robert Mallett, Executive Director of the Hobart Chamber of Commerce said some local businesses might be struggling with the transition. “Overall feelings would be ‘mixed’. We probably all would prefer to use environmentally friendly products but their introduction needs to be fair and appropriately done,” he said. “A significant number of Hobart businesses have been using compostable products for some time and for them the transition just means that they may have lost a unique selling point. For others, the cost of doing business will increase. The compostable products are generally more expensive and the time to decant the various condiments e.g. tomato sauce, soy etc will be an added cost in not only the materials but also wages.” Robert also shared that retailers have been permitted to use up their existing supply up until July 31st so now they will no longer be able to use them. “I’m sure that takeaway food venues in all other municipalities will be very happy to buy them at a discounted price.” If a business hasn’t transitioned yet, there is help at hand. “The Hobart City Council has a very comprehensive listing of all the various compostable containers on its website to support vendors transition but it still remains that the cost of doing business in Hobart is increasing,” Robert said.
Shots have been fired by artist Kirsha Kaechele as the debate around salmon farming heats up. In a three and a half minute parody video posted to her Instagram account on 14 July, Kaechele role plays leading a military style attack on salmon pens, saying, “We’re gonna f#$k you up.” Days later a feature appeared in The Mercury (20 July, 2021) with a response from Huon Aquaculture founder Frances Bender describing the video as “ridiculous and puerile at best, inciting violence at worst.” While we wait for Kirsha’s sequel or Frances’ spoof video of blowing up Mona, if you haven’t seen the vid, head to www.instagram.com/kirshakaechele.
LITTLE BADGE WITH A BIG IMPACT
Words: Suzanne Curry, Friend of Hobart Legacy. For almost 100 years, Legacy has kept the promise to thousands of veterans’ families – helping provide financial and social support for those in their care during times of hardship and grief. The Southern Tasmanian community will have the opportunity to support Hobart Legacy Club during Legacy Week, Monday 30 August to Saturday 4 September, 2021. This year focuses on Little Badge: Big Impact – the notion that even the smallest of donations will have a real and heartwarming impact on our veterans’ families. Hobart Legacy currently looks after over 700 veterans’ families, providing services like welfare assistance, home visits, widows’ clubs, luncheons, and educational support. Nationally, Legacy cares for 48,000 veterans’ families, including Widows in their senior years, younger Widows with children, and veterans’ dependents with a disability. Legacy merchandise, including badges, pens and Legacy bears will be available at our Club during Legacy Week, as well as most suburban shopping centres and throughout the CBD. To find out other ways to buy merchandise, make a donation or find out more about Legacy, please visit www.legacy.com.au, call Hobart Legacy on 6234 6581 or email email@example.com
TASSIE RACING INDUSTRY INFRASTRUCTURE DEEMED ‘NOT ADEQUATE’
The rise in female participants in the Tasmanian racing industry has required funding to upgrade training centre and racecourse facilities, which are currently ‘not adequate’. The state government has announced $3 million for one-off infrastructure upgrades at the Brighton Training Centre, the Longford Racecourse and the Devonport Racing Club. The funding will cover track upgrades and drainage works as well as improvements to amenities buildings and female jockey rooms.
HOBART FOSTER CARERS URGENTLY NEEDED
Southern Tasmania’s largest foster care provider is desperate for more carers. There are approximately 1300 children and young people in state care in Tasmania and not enough carers to take them in. Andrea Sturges, General Manager of Kennerley Children’s Homes, said some children are unable to be placed as a result. “There are children we cannot take as an organisation because of their ages, stages and mix of households, so there is always a need to find people willing to open their hearts and homes to young people of all ages,” she said.
Ms Sturges said many of their carers will eventually “age out”, but younger carers are not yet there to fill the gaps. “We need all ages of carers, and we need them now,” she said. “They can be any age, religion, same sex couples, singles, married, have their own children, be unable to have children of their own. We are a non-denominational organisation that welcomes people from all walks of life and we make no judgments.”
It’s not all or nothing either – they need carers for full-time placements as well as respite options. “People live busy lives and work, they often don’t realise that they could be a respite carer – which would mean they can care for the same children regularly but not full time to give their family or their carer a break.”
Carers are volunteers, but they can receive a tax-free board payment from the state government to reimburse them for the care. They may also be eligible for Centrelink family tax benefit or other payments. The Kennerley Centre provides ongoing training, development and support. “We need your help as a community so they feel loved and safe,” Ms Sturges said. If you’re interested in offering your home and your time to a foster child, contact the Kennerley Centre on 6107 9300 or together@kennerleykids. org.au.
MAYORAL RACE HEATS UP IN THE BRIGHTON COUNCIL BY-ELECTION
With the resignation of Brighton Council mayor Tony Foster on 30 June 2021, a by-election has been scheduled to fill all the vacant positions of mayor and one councillor and four candidates for mayor. Polling closes on 24 August at 2pm. Head to www.tec.tas.gov.au for more information.
AGATHA CHRISTIE’S THE STRANGER HITS THE STAGE
A play written by Agatha Christie which lay dormant for almost 100 years will be performed in Hobart at the end of the month thanks to The Hobart Repertory Theatre. The synopsis of psychological thriller The Stranger says it better than we could ourselves: Who could blame her? Enid Bradshaw had been engaged to solid, reliable Dick for seven years but hadn’t seen him for almost half of that time. She’d been working in a boring job for ages and like many young women, had dreams of a life offering excitement and adventure. One day, a tall, dark, handsome stranger suddenly walked into her life and offered her everything she had ever dreamed of…” Directed by industry legend Jeff Kevin, The Stranger opens on Friday, 27 August at The Playhouse Theatre and will keep you guessing right up to the final breath!
MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT AT WORK IN TASSIE
The Tasmanian Government has launched a free online mental health platform to support Tasmanian businesses and help their employees with their mental health. The Head4Work platform aims to support workers to better understand how to manage mental health risks at work, along with showing managers what they can do to support their staff.
RAPID GROWTH IN HOBART AS ROLLER SKATERS CLEAR THE SHELVES
The Hobart Social Skates group reckon they might be ‘Hobart’s happiest and most fun social group’, and it sounds like they might be right. Created in January 2019 as a Facebook group, it has quickly grown to include over 600 members who hold weekly indoor and outdoor skate meetups for roller skaters and inline skaters. They’re gaining in popularity so quickly that group admin Russ Tatlow says they’ve cleared out the local skate supplies shops. “Skating (quads and inlines) is a global activity that is experiencing rapid growth in Tasmania (and around the world),” he said. “So much so, there is a shortage of skate gear and it’s commonplace to have to join an ‘order queue’ to get the skates/blades or wheels and gear you want. Otherwise you have to be satisfied with what is left on the shelf! It’s a crazy situation for retailers, but kind of good that it’s getting so popular again.” If you’d like to start skating – or revisit your skate-filled youth – you can join the growing numbers of Hobartians from all walks of life by finding the Hobart Social Skates group on Facebook.
TENPIN BOWLING NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS IN HOBART
Moonah is currently hosting the 59th Tenpin Bowling National Championships has been hosted in Tasmania, and only the fourth time since 2006 that the National Championships has been hosted in Tasmania, and only the fourth time since the event’s inception in 1962. This year’s event will see both the Junior and Adult National Championships, as well as the Australian Masters, with elite and aspiring elite players participating at IZOne Bowling. It all wraps up on August 15.
AUSTRALIANS OF THE YEAR TRAVELLING EXHIBITION
The National Museum of Australia is touring an exhibition celebrating the eight state and territory recipients of the 2021 Australian of the Year Awards, including national winner, our own Grace Tame. The recipients have each contributed a significant object that reveals meaningful stories about their lives, aspirations and experiences. Grace Tame, a survivor of sexual assault and advocate for others, has chosen as her object a book with the first 5000 names of individuals who supported her campaign to change Tasmania’s state law that prevented survivors of sexual assault from speaking publicly about their experiences. The book reminds her of the tremendous support she has had in Australia and overseas through the #LetHerSpeak campaign and represents a new future for survivors. The exhibition will be on display in TMAG’s Central Gallery from 13 August to 26 September.
THE UNDIES PROJECT HELPING WOMEN
A new initiative is giving away free pairs of reusable period underwear to Hobart residents on low incomes. The Undies Project wants to increase the accessibility of period undies and reduce the amount of plastic sanitary products going to landfill. As the undies are washable and reusable, they can save a lot of money in the long-term too. The project is being run by Women’s Health Tasmania in partnership with Australian underwear manufacturer Modibodi. It is supported by the City of Hobart through their Urban Sustainability Grant. To find out more head to the Women’s Health Tasmania website and look for The Undies Project for the link to a survey to claim your pairs.
TASSIE MUMS DO IT AGAIN
Well done and hearty thanks to Tassie Mums, the local charity who collects then delivers clothes and essentials for kids in need across the state, for the increase in services they’ve provided this past year. Over the past financial year their 65 volunteers worked with 60 organisations to help 660 children. They sent out 2130 bundles including 19 cots, 21 prams and 24 car seats with a combined value of over $250,000. Total bundles were up by just over 200, and they helped an extra 70 children compared to the prior year. Clair Harris, Tassie Mums Founder and CEO, said the figures had increased steeply in line with the end of Covid payments in March. “All the figures are up on the last financial year, which given the year we’ve had is surprising, a lot of organisations weren’t even sure if we were open during the lockdown (we were),” she said. “While we wish the need for our service didn’t exist, we are very grateful for so much community support that allows us to help so many kids.” Clair said she expects the next year will bring more growth. “The year ahead makes me a little nervous at just how much it may hold but I know we can do it as support for Tassie Mums continues to grow.” If you’d like to volunteer or donate goods to Tassie Mums, get in touch via tassiemums.org.
TASMANIAN BUILDING BOOM CONTINUES
Tasmania’s building sector continues to boom, according to the latest information from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). The ABS figures show that in the March 2021 quarter, the value of residential building work in Tasmania was 13.6 percent higher than the same period the previous year, which showed the second highest growth of all the states. The number of dwellings started in the March 2021 quarter was the highest it has been in the past 25 years. These statistics show our economy and jobs in the building sector are healthy, but on the flip side, builders, tradies and architects are so in demand it can take months to get the ball rolling with any renovations or new builds in greater Hobart. Have you had trouble getting a build started? We’d love to hear from you!
IMAS LAND-BASED HATCHERY LEADS THE WAY
Hobart will host a new research hub in the hope of establishing a sustainable onshore lobster aquaculture industry in Australia. The ARC Research Hub for Sustainable Onshore Lobster Aquaculture will be based at the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS), and is funded by a $5 million Australian Research Council grant through the University of Tasmania. “Through this Research Hub, we’re building the knowledge required to establish the world’s first lobster aquaculture industry, with our research outcomes targeted at positioning Australia at the forefront of onshore lobster aquaculture,” Research Hub Director, Professor Greg Smith said. “It’s about providing alternate solutions for lobster culture in bio-secure and cost effective onshore systems, with an opportunity for technology transfer to other aquaculture sectors,” he said. “Potential research outcomes include reduced environmental impacts, workforce training, new product development, improved aquaculture food safety and biosecurity, and the scientific advancement of aquaculture as a critical technology.” Other key partners are the University of Auckland, the University of the Sunshine Coast, and Australian industry partners Ornatas and PFG Group, with a total research investment in excess of $26 million.
PORT ARTHUR MASSACRE FILM WINS BIG AT CANNES WITH HOBART DIRECTOR
The star of Nitram, the controversial new film about the lead up to the Port Arthur Massacre, has won the best actor award at the Cannes Film Festival. Texan Caleb Landry-Jones, who plays the mass murderer, won after the audience gave the film a seven-minute standing ovation. Critics at the awards have praised the film, but back home in Tasmania the idea of a film relating to the massacre has been met with fear and anger.
Nitram was filmed in Geelong, rather than Tasmania, due to the sensitivity of the subject matter. It does not depict the massacre, nor does it name the perpetrator. When news of the production was announced last year survivors, families of victims and the local mayor all expressed deep misgivings. Tasmanian author Justin Woolley , who survived the massacre as a child, tweeted at the time: “As a survivor of the Port Arthur massacre I would like to state that this can, and let me be clear, f**k the f**k off,” he wrote. “I was 12 years old when that guy tried to shoot me. Our family was amazingly lucky given we all walked away. Not interested in ‘exploring this dark chapter of Australian history’ or the ‘study of a man driven to do’ this.” This year marks the 25th anniversary of the attack, which remains the worst massacre in modern Australia committed by a single person. Nitram is directed by Justin Kurzel, who lives in Hobart, and also stars Judy Davis, Essie Davis and Anthony LaPaglia. It is the first Australian film to show at Canned in a decade and will have its Australian premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival on August 6 ahead of a national cinema release, including Hobart’s State Cinema.
SAVING LIVES AT RHH HELIPAD
According to recent statistics released by the Royal Hobart Hospital, 373 patients have arrived at the hospital via the helipad since it opened in May 2020.
TASSIE WINE QUALITY SOARS
We all know that Tassie wine punches way above its weight…and it’s been well and truly confirmed with news of our wine grape quality outperforming the national average four times over. Tasmanian wine grapes have reached a record value of $3,146 per tonne, compared to the national average of $701 per tonne. Tasmania’s grape vintage volume is up 18 percent this year and the state’s wine sector contributes about $200 million to Tasmania’s economy. Next time you’re standing in the bottle-o, make sure you find the shelves of Tassie vino – you’ll not only be supporting locals, you’ll get the best quality too.
CABLE CAR APPLICATION REFUSED
The Hobart City Council voted to refuse the Mt Wellington Cableway Company’s planning application on 27 July. During the more than five hours of debate, it was revealed that there were 16,500 public representations and that over $200,000 (with the final figure still to be determined) was spent on consultants for the HCC’s investigation of the application, with the proponent reportedly paying $29,000 for their application. During the debate many councillors cited the building was designed on an unnecessarily large scale. At the final count, the vote was 9-3 in favour of refusal.
TASSIE’S BEST DESIGN AWARD A Canberra artist has won Tasmania’s most prestigious design award. Ashley Eriksmoen took home the $20,000 acquisitive Clarence Prize for Excellence in Furniture Design, run by Clarence City Council. It is one of the highest cash prizes for furniture design in Australia. Eriksmoen’s winning work, titled ‘Following years of steady decline, we are witnessing a period of unprecedented growth, is a reconfiguration of a rescued chair that incorporates salvaged parts from many other discarded chairs. Made with hand tools and simple machinery on her back deck during the height of the COVID pandemic, the work seeks to offer an antidote to society’s consumption- waste cycle and begins a critical conversation around the purpose of furniture beyond materiality and function. An exhibition of the finalists’ work is on display at Rosny Barn until 15 August.
THE GLENORCHY ARCH IS HAVING WORK DONE
A refurbishment project is set to revamp the Glenorchy Arch for generations to come. David Patman answered our burning questions.
What is happening to the arch? The arch has been at the motel for 60 years and it needs a bit of love and care. It’s a bit of a landmark on the Brooker Highway and we want to make sure it lasts another 60 years if we can. We’re commencing a restoration project between the Beck Family (current owners of the motel), and the Glenorchy City Council, with the assistance from the Glenorchy Historical Society and the local community. To work out what needs to be done we’ve had to temporarily dismantle it, with approval from Glenorchy City Council, while engineers do some testing and generally look it over. We’re fully committed to getting it on its feet again as soon as we work out what needs to be done.
Why is the arch historically significant? The arch was built by the Municipality of Glenorchy and local businesses in 1954 as a symbol of Glenorchy’s engineering know-how and civic pride for the Tasmanian visit of the newly crowned Queen Elizabeth. The Zinc Works (then called EZ and now Nyrstar) made most of the arch, with the wires provided by Titan, and a large crown on top which was made of fabric donated by Claudio Alcorso’s company Silk and Textiles. They even made silk handkerchiefs with a picture of the arch embroidered on it. Originally spanning the road from the Tasman Bridge into Hobart, it was a cheeky move by Glenorchy to promote itself by putting a large structure like this right in the heart of Hobart. After sitting at the Berriedale Reserve for a few years, the ‘Glenorchy Arch’ was purchased by Riverfront Motel (formerly known as the Motel Derwent), in 1961. The arch also has a unique place in design history, being one of the few remaining examples of large-scale space-age ‘Googie’ style construction, and is possibly the only commemorative arch left in Australia. Dr Helen Norrie, lecturer in Architecture and Design at the University of Tasmania, told us, “Glenorchy Arch is a wonderful example of unique civic design, born out of willingness of the major local manufacturers to cooperate and create a striking, fun and futuristic representation of Glenorchy’s aspiration to be a manufacturing hub. What’s interesting is that Glenorchy really has become a centre for designers and makers – not only the large industrials, but light industry and craftspeople, making everything from zinc to chocolate, catamarans to furniture. The arch was made for the Queen, but it should be kept for Glenorchy.
When will people see it again? Once the testing has been completed, we’ll have a better idea what resources we need for the restoration and can make a plan. It’s such an icon and symbol of Glenorchy and we know people love it that we want to bring it back as soon as we can. We have created a website with some of its history and people can subscribe for updates on the restoration process – we’d love to hear from people with any stories about the arch.
For more info or to get involved, please visit and subscribe for updates at www.glenorchyarch.org
In the pictures below: Note the 1951 Plymouth vehicle appearing in both pics. Top is the Glenorchy Arch in Liverpool Street, courtesy of John Goldsmith and bottom at the Riverfront Hotel, by Simon Cuthbert.