Sarsfield Community Association

3 December 2021

Sarsfield Community Snippets ~ Number 8

The first days of Summer have also brought our first spell of warm weather. Sarsfield has continued to be a hive of activity. The Pizza and Movie night was a great family night despite the modified indoor program due to heavy rain. Busy, Busy, Busy! More advanced concept plans have been commissioned to support the redevelopment of the Recreation Reserve and funding applications have been submitted to enable some of our dreams to become realities. Play group, Women’s Cuppa and Chats, several Anglicare support programs and Colleen from the hub offering Digital advice has ensured plenty of action around Sarsfield. The Bruthen Sarsfield C Grade Cricket team continues to utilise the ground on Saturdays. Home rebuilds and new builds dot the countryside along with “shiny” new sheds and fences. There is certainly a strong sense of optimism and resilience in Sarsfield at the moment.

Movie and Pizza Night Image: SRR Community Facebook

Volunteers from our community have been amazing over the past twenty-three months, from the initial crisis support at the time immediately after the 2019/20 Summer Bushfires to the continuous and ongoing efforts since. This has included consulting with community, organising and supporting Friday night feeds and events, developing community plans and funding applications, attending regular meetings with BRV, agencies and sponsors, advocating with government on behalf of our fellow Sarsfieldians and helping at working bees, set ups and mowing our grounds. The list goes on and on and the work by these volunteers has been amazing.

This Sunday’s EXPO is a big event, but we need more volunteers to spread the workload on the day. If you are able to help out in any way, please contact Cath on 0438 051 936.

The Sarsfield Snaps project has been an incredibly positive story over the past 23 months . Amidst a lot of uncertainty , grief and loss during the early months of 2020 the Snaps project provided validation and an outlet for our Sarsfield young people. Good news stories were spawned from the project. Exhibitions, media coverage and interest by our community has buoyed the spirits of the talented young Sarsfield photographers.

Our Snaps team are excited to be able to exhibit at the Melbourne Zoo from the 11th December this year. We will do a detailed report on the back story and the success of Sarsfield Snaps in the next Snippets.

Sarsfield Snaps displayed on School Road. Image: SRR Community Facebook

Today’s Snippets report on the progress of the Sarsfield Great Alpine Road Safety plan, provides updated and additional information about this Sunday’s Bushfire Resilience and Adaption Expo and provides a long lost Sarsfield secret- a historical story about the Sarsfield Aussie Rules Football Team.

Road Safety in Sarsfield

One of the common themes that continually came out during the community surveys, formal consultations and informal chats has been concerns around several identified aspects of Road Safety in Sarsfield. Whilst increased road noise and less privacy were due to the devastating effect of loss of roadside trees and vegetation, other safety issues were highlighted.

The Great Alpine Road forms the spine that the vast majority of Sarsfield residents’ access to drive to work, to schools, to socialise, and to travel to larger centres. The GAR is critical to us all.

However the GAR at Sarsfield with a 100 kph speed limit, plenty of bends , dips and hills, no slip lanes, school bus stops, a river bridge and increased traffic flow with a noticeable increase of trucks and semi-trailers is a disaster waiting to happen.

Heavy vehicle on the Great Alpine Road Image: John Kinniburgh

Whilst there have been recorded fatalities and serious accidents over past years, most Sarsfield residents have experienced either a near miss or a minor bingle usually whilst trying to avoid a catastrophe. Crossing the Highway as a pedestrian is also extremely dangerous for most of us.

The Sarsfield Community Association has been engaging with VicRoads, local politicians, police and other agencies to have some of the Traffic Safety issues addressed. At present on the Sarsfield Community Website there is an interactive survey where residents can add to the anecdotal data which will hopefully spur authorities to address our concerns.

The reduction of the Sarsfield Speed Limit from 100kph to 80kph between School Road and Eleven Mile Road is an urgent first step in creating a safer Sarsfield. We urge any interested Sarsfield residents to fill out the survey on the website- your comments can be anonymous.

Sarsfield Bushfire Resilience EXPO

The previous Snippets previewed this major event which is on this Sunday the 5th of December from 10am till 4pm at the Sarsfield Recreation Reserve. Outstanding expert speakers, innovative commercial products on display, live music, entertainment for children , CFA demonstrations, food trucks , Black Snake productions and Wacky Wombat will all add to a great event.

Some of the Commercial enterprises showcasing their innovative products include FormFlow from Geelong who have commercialized a world first metal forming engineering process which creates gapless cladding and corners- very effective in reducing ember access!

X- Fire Australia will also be on site . They have a fire safe underground rainwater tank that automatically ‘triggers’ fire suppression. Wildfire Safety Bunkers will be on site with a bunker for us to check out.

Wildfire Safety Bunkers Image: Wildfire Safety Bunkers

Tom Coupe’s Tiny Houses will display a fire-resistant tiny house. Waddell Homes specialise in Panelok construction and works with clients to produce fire resistant modular homes. David Waddell will be on site to chat about his product. Dahlsens Building Centre will have product information on fire resistant claddings. KingSpan Water and Energy will also be on hand to discuss their Galvanised and Colorbond tanks.

The panel of experts who will provide valuable information and answer questions include CSIRO Bushfire expert Justin Leonard, Fire Resistant Building expert Peter Collina, Clinical Psychologist David Younger, Architect Ian Weir (Via video link) , Landscape Architect Andrea Proctor and Dianne Phillips on Livestock and Pet care. More detailed information about their expertise was provided in Snippets 7.

Wacky wombat will provide a few laughs as a roving entertainer, Black snake productions will entertain in a series of shows and Todd Cook and Olivia Lane will have our toes tapping with live music.

Todd Cook Image: SCA Community Facebook

The CFA and DELWP will provide demonstrations and there will be food trucks on site to purchase food and snacks. The “old chestnut- the jumping castle will ensure kids have fun and are active.

Entry is free but proof of double vaccination is required.

Hope to see you there.

Wacky Wombat Image: SRR Community Facebook

Help Needed

Volunteers are desperately needed to help during the day- if you are able to volunteer for 1 or 2 hours throughout the day that would make a huge difference. Jobs such as standing the gates, carparking etc need people on the ground- please contact Cath on 0488 051 936 if you are able to help out for a small part of this great day.

Thank you.

Sarsfield FOOTY Club

Footy team from Sarsfield Image: A Rural Community p.28

On the 25th of September this year many Sarsfield residents who are long-suffering Melbourne Demons supporters bathed in the glory of the AFL Premiership. Very few in Sarsfield would be aware that 109 years earlier a Sarsfield Football team may have achieved similar glory.

For a short period before World War 1 Sarsfield had its own footy club. Local Sports and Community Historian Ian Forbes searched pre WW1 Local newspapers and was able to provide me with an interesting back story on the team. It seems the Sarsfield “aussie rules” football side only existed for a few years, entering the Bruthen Football Association in 1912. Bruthen at the time had plenty of players and fielded two teams- one badged Bruthen and the other Mossiface. Because the territorial rivalry was so fierce between those two sides it was decided to split the players differently. Many players were members of the Australian Natives Association, so an ANA team was formed. The competition was then made up of Bruthen, ANA, Sarsfield and Swan Reach.

Six rounds were to be played with the top two teams to play in a Grand Final. The Bruthen newspaper predicted with confidence that the two “Bruthen” sides would certainly play off in the Grand Final.

Early in the season Sarsfield were battling. They were unable to play “home” games as the Sarsfield Ground was being enlarged at the time and they lost their first three games including a thrashing by ANA- 84 points to 2. In the second half of the season Sarsfield footy team showed great improvement defeating Bruthen and Swan Reach before their home ground was finally ready for the final game against ANA. Sarsfield beat ANA to secure second place behind Swan Reach and head into the Grand Final in top form.

With neither of Bruthen’s teams in the final, the Association lost interest. It is unclear if the final was ever played as there is no mention of it in the Bruthen or Bairnsdale newspapers at the time.

It is more than possible that the rampaging Sarsfield Football team won the Premiership that no-one knows about.

Sarsfield 'Premiers’ 1912 Image: John Kinniburgh

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Sarsfield Community Association · 10 School Road · Sarsfield, Vic 3875 · Australia

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