CAN the NSW Government be convinced of the merit of taking at least some level of ongoing responsibility for the future of the Zig Zag Railway?
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Optimistically we would like to think so. Realistically we doubt it.
It's not the first time the suggestion has been aired but it has never been energetically pursued.
At least not until the latest drama.
The hand carved sandstone structures of the Great Zig Zag are a masterpiece of colonial engineering and more than worthy of the highest level heritage status.
Whether the government ( federal or state) attaches the same importance to the presence of a heritage tourist railway on the Zig Zag is quite another thing, notwithstanding that generous donations have been made in the past for issues like car park upgrades.
But clearly the task facing the dedicated volunteers now and into the future is a daunting one and the need for ongoing help is more real than ever after the combined impacts of flood, fire, land slip and the lowlife thieves and vandals.
These issues alone will never be overcome without effective security measures around Bottom Points and permanent fire suppression systems.
All of which beggars the question of just what compensation came from the Defence Department after the findings of liability in the 2013 firestorm.
Without real involvement it will still be a long time before visitors are tripping back in time at Zig Zag.
HOW wonderful the sights and sounds of a proper rain event over at least parts of our region in recent days.
Not enough to fill dams or get our streams up and running but just right to encourage recovery from the pre Christmas fires on the wider countryside.
Nature is a wonderful thing and transformation has been almost immediate in our parched pastures and playgrounds with green shoots popping up through the stubble.
Regrettably even across Greater Lithgow there were losers as well as winners in the scattered rain pattern but what we received was really a godsend.
A return to hot weather is tipped for this week but hopefully the next rain is somewhere on the radar.
THERE was water flowing everywhere around Lithgow at the weekend, except what we expect from our taps.
Households and businesses across the valley had their water flow reduced to not much better than a frustrating trickle for a very extended period following another water main break.
All too regular a problem in our ageing system and a much longer and complete breakdown in supply for thousands of residents than with the total water loss in the big pre Christmas break that probably resulted in record sales for the bottled water industry.
THE band rotunda in Lithgow's QE park is a delightful and very photogenic sight after dark when its ceiling lights are working.
But it's been a faded glory for a couple of months now with only three of the eight lights working.
Probably gone unnoticed as park staff don't work after dark but it's quite a feature that demands regular maintenance as part of the overall park environment.
We live in hope of again seeing that glow.
WILL we soon be seeing a new operators for Lithgow's landmark Grand Central Hotel?
The hotel underwent tasteful renovations not that long ago but the bars have not been operating over the Christmas/New Year period while being offered for sale on the open market.
The popular Thai restaurant that shares the hotel facilities has not been affected, though, and continues to attract an increasingly enthusiastic clientele.
The historic Donnybrook pub has also been awaiting a new owner since late last year.
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