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Campbelltown’s incredible dining scene is just a memory now

Lifestyle magazine In Macarthur brought back some great memories last night when they asked readers to name a restaurant they loved that was no longer cooking up a storm.

Responses poured into their Facebook page, including from yours truly, lying on the lounge last night and with nothing better to do.

Neptune’s, Fisher’s Ghost, The Barn, Lee’s Seafood in Browne Street, El Gusto’s, Le Petit Bagatelle, Patpong Thai, along with La Bella Vita and Kwality Curries in Camden – the list is as long as your arm.

Mine was Rumpole’s Brasserie, where Ivan Weber created magic every Friday for up to 20 people who joined me at the Editor’s Table.

A fond memory is dining at Bagatelle, outside on the terrace upstairs, with my family, next to our table was then mayor Russell Matheson and his clan and many other well known Campbelltown residents of the time at surrounding tables.

These days all we have is pretty much The Hermitage, pictured above, and that’s under the pump at the moment because of the lockdown.

Sure, things change, as do tastes and preferences, but boy, did we have some great restaurants in the past.

Looking at it from that point of view, you could say we have gone backwards a little bit.

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It’s interesting to see how our community leaders such as mayors and members of parliament have responded during the current pandemic.

The state MPs such as Greg Warren, Anoulack Chanthivong and Peter Sidgreaves have used their communication tools, including social media, to try to keep the community informed about the testing numbers as well as the local vaccination rollout.

The Canberra representatives, especially Labor’s Mike Freelander and Anne Stanley, have offered a mixture of political attacks over the slow rate of the vaccination rollout and inadequate financial assistance as well as service information for their constituents.

Liberal MP and energy minister Angus Taylor has provided information about the assistance available, but by and large it’s been a steady as she goes approach from him.

Where the pandemic response has differed markedly is among the local mayors.

Camden’s mayor, Theresa Fedeli, has played a straight bat, encouraging residents to make use of council’s online offerings during the pandemic.

In Liverpool, Wendy Waller, who is retiring at the next elections on December 4, has used her position to win as much assistance for local businesses as possible.

Robert Khan in Wollondilly has recently ramped up his social media presence, especially in regard to vaccination, pushing his people to win the “race’’ to safety.

In Campbelltown, George Brticevic adopted a more cautious approach in the past week or two, after previously running a social media campaign encouraging residents to support local business, especially in the hospitality sector.

One MP told Macarthur Chatter that this mayor’s support for business during a lockdown was well and good, but the message everywhere else was “stay the hell home’’.

It was well meaning, no doubt, for Cr Brticevic to post photos of himself with takeaway shop staff in various spots across Campbelltown to drum up some business for them.

These people are doing it tough, no question.

But somebody should have told him he just wasn’t reading the room and would have been better advised to post a firm “stay home’’ message in the past couple of months.

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Reports of a new rugby league competition next year that would see three Campbelltown clubs involved have opened up old wounds for one of them.

East Campbelltown Eagles, who were kicked out of Group Six almost 10 years ago, have been ticked off by NSWRL for posting on social media some of the proposed changes.

Campbelltown Collegians also posted a similar post, but it was the Eagles only who seem to have upset the powers to be at rugby league HQ and elsewhere.

It seems the poor old Eagles are still paying the price for being too successful.

In any event, if the proposal does go ahead, we could see these two clubs and current Group Six participant, Campbelltown City Kangaroos, play in what would be tremendous local derbies.

The NSWRL is expected to announce the competition format for next season in the next few weeks.

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Campbelltown Hospital’s $600 million expansion is fast becoming part of the landscape in Campbelltown.

The two giant cranes are gone as work now turns to inside the massive new health hub.

And with demand for hospital beds going up all the time thanks to the pandemic, the new hospital can’t open too soon.

In the meantime, enjoy this aerial view of our magnificent new health facility.

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With the footbridge to Macarthur Station closed for repairs in the last couple of weeks, residents of Macarthur Heights and Western Sydney University students and staff have had to find an alternative route to Goldsmith Avenue.

Landcom, who are the owners, said that following a safety assessment of the footbridge to Macarthur Station, on the university side of the railway, resurfacing works were required “to ensure continued pedestrian safety’’.

Repair works were scheduled to start on August 9, on the same day residents were to receive a letter about the situation.

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An NBN technician conducting work at a residential property in Macquarie Fields recently had a close encounter with an American Staffordshire Terrier that tried to bite him on the foot.

When the technician put a gate between him and the very angry canine, the dog jumped over the fence, but his prey was quick enough to seek shelter inside the house.

A fine and a “menacing dog order’’ are going the way of the dog owner.

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