West Coast - Tasmania Talks

“They call him ‘our Percy’” – Great granddaughter talks about extraordinary life of VC recipient, 100 years on

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Sergeant Percy Statton was a veteran, a mayor, a farmer, a husband, a father and a Victoria Cross medallist.

Born in Beaconsfield, the Tasmanian World War 1 veteran led an extraordinary life. This weekend marks the centenary of Sgt Statton being awarded the Victoria Cross medal, and celebrations have already begun across the state.

The great granddaughter of Percy Statton, Kerri Morely, joins Brian Carlton to talk about this amazing story. She says that Zeehan Primary School, which Percy is a former pupil of, have claimed the veteran as ‘our Percy.’

There is a special celebration at Zeehan Primary School this Saturday from 11am – 12:30pm.

Tassielink scraps Strahan to Hobart bus services – so is it an issue?

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Tassielink has made the decision to end bus services between Strahan and Hobart, instead increasing its service from Strahan to Burnie to 7 days a week.

A lack of people using the service was cited as the reason for the cancellation of the Hobart route. However, there are some councillors that believe some students and other people in the community will be greatly disadvantaged by the lack of buses to the capital city.

Mayor of West Coast Council, Phil Vickers, joins Brian Carlton this morning to discuss the issue. He believes that the 7 day service to Burnie is better serviced and used than the route to Hobart.

Image: By KeresH - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2079166

'Getaway' to showcase adventure tourism and heritage on West Coast

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The West Coast is full of heritage and rich adventure, and the rest of Australia is about to find out about one of Tasmania’s best kept secrets.

Renowned Channel Nine travel show, Getaway, has been filming in several locations on the West Coast for the past week.

Getaway Presenter, Charli Robinson, takes time out from her West Coast adventure to speak with Brian Carlton about the wonderful West Coast activities Getaway will showcase.

Image: By Christopher Neugebauer from Hobart, Australia (West Coast Wilderness Railway) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

‘Heartbroken for us, our employees, and the community,’ – owners of the Cribb Hut talk devastating fire


The owner of Zeehan’s Cribb Hut says he is ‘heartbroken’ for his family, his employees and the community.

Zeehan’s only traditional takeaway store went up in flames yesterday morning around 8:20am, and owner Ross Work says that within three minutes, the building was gone.

Ross joins Brian Carlton this morning to talk about this devastating fire, and to thank the community for the well wishes they have received.

Image: supplied.

‘I can’t see it failing’ – Avebury Mine set to deliver 200 jobs to West Coast

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 Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull was in Zeehan yesterday to announce the reopening of the Avebury Mine.

The project is a boon for the West Coast, with around 200 jobs set to be delivered by the mine.

Mayor of the West Coast Council, Phil Vickers, tells Brian Carlton that it’s an exciting time for the West Coast, and that he ‘can’t see it failing.’

‘It’s a miracle my building is still standing’ – Zeehan Rock Shop owner speaks about devastating fire

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Owner of the Zeehan Rock Shop, Richard Wolfe, says that it’s a miracle his shop is still standing after a fire in Zeehan yesterday.

The fire has completely destroyed West Coast Realty, with the Zeehan Pharmacy and the Zeehan Rock Shop also damaged.

Police have labelled the fire as suspicious, but have not officially stated if it was deliberately lit or not.

Brian Carlton speaks with Mr Wolfe about the awful fire, and how he will go getting back on his feet after the tragedy.

Image: Used with permission

‘It’s devastating’ – Zeehan’s only takeaway store gone

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Zeehan’s only takeaway store is gone.

This morning the Cribb Hut went up in flames, and according to Mayor of the West Coast Council Phil Vickers, the shop is completely gone.

Mayor Vickers was one of the first people on the scene, and says the owner of the Cribb Hut believes the fire may have started from one of the vats in the store.

Phil talks to Brian Carlton this morning about the fire, and says the fire is ‘just devastating.’

‘Need to get bums on seats’ – Par Avion talks new Hobart to Strahan service


On Tuesday the State Government, Par Avion and several stakeholders announced the introduction of flights from Hobart to Strahan.

It is hoped that these flights will help to disperse tourism numbers from Hobart through to the West Coast, as well as open up travel opportunities for West Coast residents.

Shannon Wells, Managing Director of Par Avion, speaks with Brian Carlton about the new service and what can be expected.

Image: YSSYguy at English Wikipedia [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

‘The West Coast will be the adventure hub for Tasmania,’ says Destination West Coast re new Iconic Walk

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The West Coast has beaten out 35 entries to have The Philosopher’s Tale chosen as Tasmania’s next Iconic Walk.

The State Government will spend $20 million to develop ‘one chapter’ of the walk along the Tyndall Range. The walk is about 22km, and is expected to take around three days.

There are currently four planned ‘chapters’ of The Philosopher’s Tale walk, and combined with other business ventures around West Coast, is set to make the West Coast the adventure hub of Tasmania.

Chair of Destination West Coast, Anthony Brown, talks to Brian Carlton this morning about the walk, and Bob Brown’s feedback on the walking route.

‘To get this kind of support… is remarkable’- Zeehan Rock Shop open for business after fire

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The Zeehan Rock Shop is open once again, after a devastating fire destroyed half the business.

West Coast Reality, the Zeehan Rock Shop and the Zeehan Pharmacy were all affected by a fire on February 28th, which was deemed by Tasmania Police to be deliberately lit.

Owner of the Zeehan Rock Shop, Richard Wolfe, speaks to Brian Carlton about the reopening, and the community support that helped him get back on his feet.

“… I’m a little bit embarrassed almost that I've had financial assistance in a place like Zeehan where people don't actually have much,” says Richard.

1939 DP railcar ‘used as a shed’ to be restored by West Coast Wilderness Railway

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A 1939 DP railcar that was ‘being used as a shed’ in a Launceston backyard is set to be restored by the West Coast Wilderness Railway (WCWR).

The WCWR team have had their eye on the railcar for a few years now, and hope that it will be restored in about two years time. There is the potential for the railcar to transport people between  Regatta Point and Dubbil Barril once the restoration is complete.

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Image: The DP railcar back in its heyday

Anthony Brown, General Manager of the WCWR, talks to Brian Carlton about the railcar find, the restoration project and potential use of the railcar.

Image: used with permission

Anticipation building for bi-annual The Unconformity festival


International artists and national media are queueing up to be a part of the West Coast’s bi-annual Unconformity festival.

Accomodation in the West Coast area has been booked out for months, and it is hoped around 2,000 – 2,500 people will attend the event.

This year’s Unconformity will be held on October 19 -22, and boasts events such as Mark Seymour from Hunters and Collectors, Tasmanian Ghost Stories, and several art exhibitions.

Artistic Director of The Unconformity, Travis Tiddy, joins Brian Carlton to discuss the event.

For more information and to buy tickets, click here. West Coast locals will receive discounted tickets to events.

Image: By The Unconformity, used with permission.

Communications Minister: Better mobile service for West Coast, says don’t ‘sext’ after school program tells students how to do so 'safely'

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The West Coast is set to receive faster mobile services, with the Liberal Government today committing to $700,000 to fix the network.

Federal Minister for Communications, Senator Mitch Fifield, is in Tasmania today to join Braddon by-election candidate Brett Whiteley in announcing the policy, which is set to improve all West Coast regions including Tullah and Granville.

Minister Fifield speaks to Brian Carlton about the West Coast announcement, and also weighs in on the topic of a Victorian school teaching ‘safe sexting’.

Concerns grow for missing Somerset man


Concerns are growing for missing Somerset man, Doug Murchie, who has been missing since last Wednesday at 5:30pm.

Mr Murchie owned West Coast Realty in Zeehan, which was completely destroyed in a suspicious fire last Wednesday - the same day he went missing.

Mayor of the West Coast Council, Phil Vickers, was a friend of Doug’s, and shares some information with Brian in the hope that he may be found.

They also discuss how Zeehan is progressing since the fire, the outlook of the West Coast since the election, and the issue of free camping.

If you have any information about Doug Murchie, please contact Wynyard Police on 6477 7267 or 131 444.

Image: Supplied

Concerns over Tullah to Burnie road

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Have you heard of a road with 220 potholes in 6km?

Apparently that’s the case for the Murchison Highway, with the road from Tullah to Burnie allegedly not up to scratch despite recent roadworks.

Stacey from Tullah calls in to tell Brian Carlton here concerns this morning.

Council areas banning motor homes from overnight parking


The West Coast Council will no longer permit self-contained motor homes to park in the car park at Queenstown Recreation Ground.

Stan from Queenstown called Brian Carlton this morning to tell him of the situation, worrying that it could be hurting local businesses.

Brian also later learnt that the same rule has been applied by Meander Valley Council on council reserves.

Economic Regulator explains why councils had to ban free RV parking


Local residents have been concerned recently over the ban on free overnight parking for RV’s at Queenstown and the Meander Valley area.

Earlier this week, General Manager of the West Coast Council, Dirk Dowling, told Brian Carlton that they were forced to ban the free parking due Federal Governent legislation enforced by Tasmania’s Economic Regulator.

Brian speaks with Tasmania’s Economic Regulator, Joe Dimasi, about the laws in place and why free camping had to be banned.

Empire Hotel manager says community has rallied behind him after false accusations of #Steakgate

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At The Unconformity in Queenstown this past weekend, an incident occurred where a scotch fillet steak was thrown from the balcony of the Empire Hotel at people protesting for animal rights.

On Tasmania Talks on Monday, the story around the incident quickly unravelled after Manager of the Empire Hotel, Reg Manson, was accused of throwing the steak. He called in to clear his name, but was worried the mud had already stuck.

Today, Reg speaks with Brian Carlton in the aftermath of #steakgate, and says that the community has rallied behind him in the wake of the false accusations.

Image: By Gary Houston - Own work, CC0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=64845129

Hellyer Gold Mine to reopen today

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The Hellyer Gold Mine, close to Waratah, will be officially reopened today.

The mine will use existing infrastructure to start reprocessing tailings from previous mining operations.

Once the operation is fully up and running, it is expected that up to 50 people will be employed at the site.

Director of Hellyer Gold Mine, Steve White, and Executive Director of NQ Minerals, Roger Jackson, speak with Brian Carlton about this great news for the West Coast, and the nuts and bolts of how it works.

Mining, tourism opportunities or a doomsday bunker: Dundas Mine for sale


What would you do if you owned a mine in a West Coast ghost town?

Your dream could become reality, with Dundas Mine currently for sale for approximately $300,000.  The hobby mine dates back to 1892, and is home to rare crocoite crystal formations.


Mike Phelan, co-owner of Dundas Mine, joins Brian Carlton this morning to talk about the sale, and what opportunities it could present for its new owner.

If you are interested in Dundas Mine and would like more information, please call 0408 578 973.

Images: Supplied.

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