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MT MURRAY NURSERY
WHOLESALE & RETAIL
Award winning nursery with an
extensive range of select garden
plants. The nursery is on
5 acres opposite the river near the
Bong Bong Bridge.
Headlam Road, Moss Vale Ph: 4869 4111 Fax: 4869 4200
OPEN SEVEN DAYS 9am to 5pm
What does it mean to you to be the Ambassador
of the Tulip Festival?
The Southern Highlands was the first place we
settled outside of Sydney. It was the first Youth Off the
Streets service and the SH have become important
to me. I have chosen to have my private dwelling in
the SH and do everything in my power to try to get
home most nights. It is a place of peace and tranquillity for me.
Being chosen as the Patron of the Tulip Festival was a real honour
for me, not so much personally but because of the tireless volunteers
who work day in and day out to support our work financially in the
SH. Chair of our SH volunteers, Helen Chadwick, has been strong
in the past 15 years for our presence in the SH. Monica Howard
and her dedicated volunteers raise over $100, 000 a year through
their op shop and stalls at McDonald's at Sutton Forest. Being Patron
means that I can help shine a light on the great heart of the Southern
Why were you chosen to be the Ambassador?
You would have to ask the committee this question. I guess one of the
reasons is that my national profile would have played a part, but more
importantly that I am a local. I have a good support team in the SH
who advocate for my work. The SH media have also been supportive:
the SH News, Graham Day from 2ST and other media outlets.
Is there any new info on your Southern Highlands services you
would like to share?
We are transferring some of our services from the SH to the
Wollongong area as it has been too difficult to find enough qualified
staff to keep all our programs going in the SH. Our flagship services at
Sutton Forest remain in this area. This is a program leading the nation
in therapeutic intervention with troubled young people. We currently
try to employ about 70 youth workers, psychologists, interns and
management in the SH and have struggled for years to attract enough
appropriate staff. ■
approached the council to see if it could be
replaced with a new band rotunda donated by
me at no cost to the council.
"That happened in 1984 and it was dedicated
to my brother, Harry Springett, in recognition of
his 40 years' service on the council."
The glory days of Tulip Time had past by the
1980s and in the 1990s the event struggled to
make money for charity or even cover costs.
It was a situation that almost saw the demise of
Once more Ted stepped up to the plate
resuming his role as Tulip Time committee
president in the mid-1990s.
"I went to the council suggesting an entry
charge to Corbett Gardens during the festival be
considered," he said.
"There was a great uproar about my
"It was then decided that there would be a
nominal fee for visitors to the area with locals
allowed to enter free with proof of residence.
"That worked. The festival has continued and is
now again thriving."
By 1997, under the leadership of Ted,
100,000 bulbs were planted in Corbett
Gardens in preparation for the spring festival.
Ted said he hadn't been involved in the
committee for the past 10 years, but he was
thrilled to see it continue to grow, promote
the spring glory of the Highlands and raise
money for charity under the direction of Tourism
"I'm not so fussed about the increasing number
of stalls -- I think the festival should be more
about the gardens -- but I still think Tulip Time is
an exciting time," he said. ■
: FR CHRIS RILEY
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