WHERE do old bank premises go to die when they're pensioned off?
Nowhere really. They get snapped up and re-purposed by Westfund.
But Westfund must be full up with old banks by now so that raises the question in many minds as to what will happen to the NAB premises in the Lithgow CBD when the bank walks away from Lithgow in April.
The NAB building is one of the finest heritage buildings in Lithgow and has been well maintained over the years. Owned by a private investor the building accommodates the bank on the ground floor and basement and has a private residence upstairs.
It also holds a place in history - at least for now - as our oldest continuous business.
What the future holds for such a significant site will be watched with a great deal of interest.
Also creating intrigue is the impending auction by L J Hooker of the head office of the Family First Bank - it used to be the credit union in a past life - in Methven Street.
The eye catching design has been a landmark for a long time but it's been years since any face to face transactions were carried out there. That's the role of the Main Street 'bankers row' office.
The current head office has only an administrative role but the building also accommodates the local Live Better office that used to be called Community Transport.
Westfund Health acquired three bank premises over the years - the biggest of these the Commonwealth (after the Commnwealth relocated in town) now leased by Westfund to a government agency;, Colonial State (now the Westfund public office and eyewear centre; and Westpac after the relocation (nowthe dental centre).
The ANZ premises didn't stay vacant after the bank cut and run, now leased by a real estate agency.
Paul's legacy of service
THERE was a notable loss to the Lithgow Community this week with the death of veteran firefighter and rescue worker Paul Carter. An all round good guy and teller of bad jokes, Paul lost a long battle with cancer. But he left behind a legacy of community service that would deserve a place on any honours board anywhere. Paul during his regular working life had stints in the office at the Small Arms Factory and at Angus Place Colliery. But he was passionate about his role in life with the fire brigade - NSW Fire and Rescue. His record of service is truly remarkable and he is believed to have been one of the longest serving firies in NSW - 52 years in the brigade on around the clock call out and 27 years as Captain of Station 364 (Lithgow West) until health issues forced his retirement in 2020. Life in the emergency services is a challenging role and not for everyone. But Captain Paul Carter saw it through without exception and his legacy remains an inspiration to younger firefighters coming through the system. His funeral will take place next week.
Ron would be pleased
THE gallery owners who have transformed the old servo site next door to the Lithgow Cemetery deserve praise on a job well done. The place will be best remembered by oldies as Ron Genge's electrical and pioneering television outlet but over the years had a chequered career as a private residence, service station and convenience store, used car outlet and even a short lived stint as club house for an outlaw motorcycle gang. Finally the 'old Genge place' is getting the highway frontage attention it deserves. Drop in and have a look.
Where size does count
A little while back there was indignation in the ranks of the faithful when it was seriously suggested bigger parking bay standards needed to be legislated to cater for the increasing but strange fascination for ever bigger vehicles on our roads - particularly giant US style good ol' boy utes that are now dominating sales in Australia. Many motorists battling to negotiate around such things are more likely to suggest separate parking lots altogether. And perhaps a good idea for safety sake would be to increase the distance that vehicles over a certain size must park from intersections. A little discrimination needed here.