IT'S a significant problem that Lithgow Council and the long suffering ratepayers could well have done without.
In the lead up to Christmas urgent repair work is proceeding at the library learning centre.
The work won't go unnoticed; the area around the library resembles a small shipyard.
The word on the street is that during a routine inspection a structural engineer detected what must be a fault of some magnitude in the upper facade above Main Street.
The result is the entire facade - constructed way back to a former life when Woolworths occupied the premises - has to be demolished brick by brick.
And the howling winds of recent times have not been kind to the workmen on their lofty work site.
There is apparently no immediate risk to the public and the library remains open for the moment (the regular entrance can be found beneath the scaffolding).
Burns Lane, however, is remaining closed to traffic.
Council has not, publicly at least, indicated its plans for whatever follows the demolition work.
The wayward wind
FOR weeks we've been griping about the seemingly endless howling westerlies and their intermittent dust storms. When the wind finally eased for a time at the weekend the calm was widely welcomed. But relief was short lived; late afternoon the first easterly of the season made its presence felt and with it came the rolling cloud of smoke from the massive bushfire in the Wollemi. The irritating smog filled the valley and much of the district until a light westwind eased the situation hours later. The 'air freshener' didn't last long and by Monday things were decidedly unpleasant again.
HOPEFULLY in the big dry someone is taking responsibility for watering the trees along the highway median strip westward towards the twin bridges and Tankersley Hill. When mature they will provide an even more pleasant entry to Lithgow from the west, as is the case with the already mature avenue on the eastern approaches. Most of the trees appear to have survived but there are clearly a few that may need replacing. It was a great piece of highway landscaping that can only have long term benefits. (The recent plantings along Farmers Creek also need a regular drink).
The demands are great
THE generosity of communities around Australia has been tested this year as rarely before with drought support and now the bushfires. But we're being tested again coming into the so called festive season when support organisations will be seeking help so they can help those for whom Christmas is just another challenge.
Vinnies and the Salvos are again ground zero for the helping hand and will be appealing for gifts for young people of all ages to be distributed during Christmas week. They also need non perishable festive foodstuffs.
The local motorcycling fraternity will again be coordinating the collection with the annual Ulysses toy run from Portland to the Cooerwull School playground on Saturday, December 14.
Donations up that date can be left at the Portland Newsagency, Wallerawang Bowling Club, Lithgow Bunnings, Readers Heaven, Bike Stop and Lithgow Glass, or at the school playground on December 14. Start thinking how you can help. Last Christmas the support groups struggled to accommodate all who had registered for help.
Love local news? Subscribe for as little as $2 a week. Find out how here.