Discovery tour fundraiser

Sunbury Historical Tours provide guided walking tours of the historic Victoria University site on Jacksons Hill in Sunbury, which was also the former Lunatic Asylum.

This magnificent complex was established in 1864 and had functioned as an industrial school for children. However, in 1879 the facility began operating as a Lunatic Asylum and eventually became well known as “The Hill”.

Today the buildings remain decommissioned and the walking tours offer an exclusive insight for those wishing to learn more about what once was.

Tours run for approximately two hours and usually only weekends.

Julie Mills from Sunbury Historical Tours has kindly offered to host a guided tour on Sunday July 30, 2017 from 6:00pm to 8:00pm with all proceeds being donated to the Diggers Rest Primary School.

The cost is $30.00 per person, so be quick, places are limited and booking is essential.

This is an exceptional opportunity which promises to be a ‘fascinating journey’ back through time exploring significant periods of the Institution’s history.

Use the following link to download a flyer regarding the tour:

To learn more about Sunbury Historical Tours, use the following link to their website:

Green light for bottle shop

Melton City Council will issue a notice of decision to grant a permit for a packaged liquor license associated with a retail premises at 29 Cradle Road, Diggers Rest.

Councillors accepted the Officers recommendation which will allow the sale of packaged liquor between 10am to 10pm, Sunday to Saturday and 12pm to 10pm, ANZAC Day.

According to the report, Council received a number of objections against the proposal which are summarised as follows:

  • Adequacy of on-site car parking.
  • Sufficient number of liquor outlets in the surrounding area.
  • Location inappropriate for the sale of packaged liquor particularly in a centre where there is a limited sense of ownership, pride and identity.
  • Use of nearby public park for alcohol consumption.
  • Safety of staff and adequacy of site supervision.
  • Amenity concerns (ie. deliveries, rubbish, noise and broken empty bottles).

Council considers the proposal acceptable given the type of licence being requested, the location of the site and the nature of uses in the commercial strip.

The approval is subject to the installation of mirrors and CCTV cameras to improve general safety in the commercial area.

Another sold

Properties offered for sale in the established township of Diggers Rest are not on the market for too long, some only lasting a matter of days.

Prices have steadily increased over the past 12 months with a record auction price achieved recently for a 3 bedroom brick veneer residence in Eureka Road.

It’s expected that a number of homes will hit the market in the coming weeks with vendors hoping to cash in on the current trend and the abundance of prospective buyers looking to purchase.

Local real estate agent Adrian Sacco said that he had a large number of buyers looking to invest in Diggers Rest.

He also said that auction is the best method of sale.

Council to assist schools

Great news for the community of Diggers Rest.

As part of the Community Grants Program Review, Melton City Councillors unanimously agreed to engage and assist schools that are experiencing difficulties in achieving grant applications to identify appropriate partner organisations.

Each year many grant opportunities are missed and the assistance from Council should help to widen the scope and help to identify possible partners.

Diggers Rest is a small community and the new initiative may work toward delivering some worthwhile projects.

According to Watts Ward Councillor Michelle Mendes, there are many basic programs available like autism programs, school breakfast programs and gardening programs. There are also programs which have helped children reach their social potential and emotional development.

Cr. Mendes said “some of those programs are not funded by the State Government”, “if schools don’t have the assistance to get those grants by the City of Melton, they’re going to become disadvantaged”.

School to celebrate 135 years

This month the Diggers Rest Primary School will celebrate 135 years.

Although the current Plumpton Road site was officially opened in December 1991, the school was established on June 19, 1882 with the number 2479.

The school began in a portable building and the first head teacher was Mr. William Best.

Over the years the school has experienced a colourful past which has seen it temporarily closed between 1903 to 1906 due to declining attendance, destroyed by fire in March 1915 and severely damaged by a cyclone.

Despite these setbacks, many residents have fond memories of attending our local school which has now become an integral part of our growing community.

The birthday celebrations will include a welcome speech from the principal Mrs Hedger and followed by a number of guest speakers including members from the student Leadership team who will talk about why the school is special to them. Some former students will talk about what the school was like when they attended. A cake cutting ceremony, finishing with afternoon tea and memorabilia displays.

The event will be held in the School courtyard on June 16, 2017
from 2:00pm through to 3:00pm.

Budgetary funding update

A huge thank you to everyone who supported the section 223 budget submission seeking recurrent funding to assist the Diggers Rest Community Carols event.

In total, 154 votes were recorded during the local online survey, 148 in support of the submission and 6 against. A number of residents took the time out to provide feedback which was used as part of the presentation process at Council.

Whilst we wait for an official decision from Melton City Council, we can be quietly confident that the presentation went well and our elected representatives will respect the wishes of residents and hopefully make the funding available.

Special thank you to Maree Welshe from the Diggers Rest Fire Brigade for assisting with the presentation at Council on Tuesday night.

View online voting results here:

Diggers Rest awakes

The closing bid of $435,000 for the 3 bedroom brick veneer home in Diggers Rest today left locals shaking their heads.

Many residents and prospective buyers turned out to witness history in the making.

Bargain hunters eager to snap up a good buy left disappointed whilst existing home owners are excited by future prospects and the overall growth of the township.

Today’s result was well above expectations, with 5 bidders all competing for the final call.

The once little hamlet of Diggers Rest is booming and real estate values confirm this.

Diggers Rest is being spruiked as the next Sydenham/Watergardens due to its excellent transport connectivity and close proximity to Melbourne.

Use the following facebook link to connect with others on this topic:

Houdini’s help brew cash for cancer

Yesterday the Community of Diggers Rest held their third annual Biggest Morning Tea at Houdini’s Café e Cucina.

The event was very well patronised, with in excess of 60 people filling the restaurant.

Melton City Council Mayor, Cr Sophie Ramsey conducted the live charity auction.

Fellow Councillors Cr. Lara Carli, Cr. Melissa DeSantis, Cr. Ken Hardy and Cr. Michelle Mendes showed their support by attending.

The initiative coincides with the Cancer Council Victoria Biggest Morning Tea program which aims to raise funds for cancer research and prevention programs.

The full ticket price of $20.00 per person is donated to Cancer Council Victoria together with the money collected from the prize wheel and live auction.

On this occasion $3,300 was raised, making a grand total of more than $6,700 raised since May 2015.

Without the help of local business and community minded residents, this fundraiser would not continue to grow.

The efforts of everyone involved is always greatly appreciated.

Use the following link to view the photo album Captured by Coops.

Join the facebook market place today…

The creation of facebook market place has helped to deliver a new paradigm for those who just love to buy, swap and sell.

Traditionally, avid bargain hunters trawled through the many facebook buy, swap and sell pages and groups looking for that certain something.

Late last year, facebook launched the “Market Place” which is a one stop destination for anyone looking to trade online or just simply have some fun.

The market place is great for communities and the interface allows for localised searching, making it very easy to find stuff for sale in your neighbourhood.

It also saves the task of monitoring a swag of buy, swap and sell groups and pages, keeping feeds and notifications to a minimum.

Use the following link to start discovering the facebook market place for yourself.

Houdini’s land model plane

Today marks the 2nd anniversary of Houdini’s Café e Cucina in Diggers Rest.

Diggers Rest is well known for the First Powered Controlled flight of an aircraft in Australia by the famous escapologist Harry Houdini in 1910.

In 2010, the community in partnership with Melton Council celebrated the 100 year anniversary of the original flight paying tribute to the pilot Harry Houdini.

Named the “Festival of Flight”, the three day event produced two scale model replicas of Houdini’s Voisin bi-plane.

One was the model built by local Bacchus Marsh aviation enthusiast the late Gary Sunderland.

The model was gifted to the Diggers Rest History Project by Melton historian Graeme Minns and is now on display at Houdini’s Café e Cucina in Diggers Rest.

Use the following link to be part of the conversation on facebook: