Re-open the walk and let people take responsibility

NO GO: It's time to re-open the Macquarie River walk and let people take responsibility for their own safety, writes Bill Kierath.
NO GO: It's time to re-open the Macquarie River walk and let people take responsibility for their own safety, writes Bill Kierath.

IT is time for Bathurst Regional Council the to re-open the Macquarie River Walk that loops between two of the bridges of Bathurst.

A portion of the walk was damaged last spring when high river levels undermined the hand rails of a portion of the concrete path. The walk is extremely popular and repeated attempts to close the walk due to perceived dangers have been thwarted by citizens removing and cutting through barriers.

There are a number of solutions to repair the damaged pathway, some more expensive than others. But in the meantime, it is time to re-open the walk and allow users to take their own responsibility for any risks from using the path.

And opening the path, with appropriate warning notices, would be much safer than the present situation.  People are now swinging around the end of the barriers over the river to enjoy the pleasures of completing the walk.

There are far riskier activities than using a 1.5 metre wide concrete path that, for a few metres, has no hand rail.

Bill Kierath, Bathurst

Beware the China solution

ON May 15, the Western Advocate ran a small article on the visit to our city by a delegation from Yangquan, China. It was unclear from this article who the individual was explaining “how the city is forming a partnership with Yangquan in China” to “Bathurst business leaders and councillors”.

The last occasion this proposal was put to the people of Bathurst was January 2015 - the individual behind this was then Councillor Jess Jennings, and it can only be assumed the current push is by the same person.

I wrote a letter to this paper at the time (February 10, 2015) essentially objecting to the concept as an ill-thought-out exercise by an idealistic and naive regional councillor.

This remains my view two years on. At the time I wrote of China as an authoritarian regime which suppresses any opposition to centralised policy [i.e. Tibet, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South China Sea]. Now, Chinese “soft power” is spreading throughout the world, an example being the One Belt One Road policy.

In Australia, there is growing public unease about the increasing level of China's acquisition of power grids, prime agricultural land, mines and residential property.

The lack of respect for this country by China is regularly aired in the state-aligned Global Times newspaper. Any interest in Australia from the Chinese is based upon self interest and economic domination.

Were Mr Jennings' idea  limited to the established sister city ideal of friendship and cultural ties, then go ahead, but this current proposal is poorly defined and if there is a business/economic element to it, Bathurst will be the loser, as will Australia.

John Bell, Bathurst

Thanks for your kindness

ON Saturday, June 8, Betty Ives had a fall out the front of Rankin Cottage Crafts.

A customer at Rankin Cottage Craft had her mobile phone and she rang for the ambulance.

Then she waited with Betty and cottage member Judith Murray until the ambulance arrived and Betty was taken to hospital with a broken leg.

Unfortunately we do not know the name of the lady who helped, and we hope you can publish our letter to thank her for all that she did.

Pam Shurmer, Bathurst