DIARY UPDATE: Week 31, 2015


Meet a new neighbour – Vince Ahern, a police officer and cousin of former Queensland premier, Mike Ahern. Vince was a boarder at Nudgee College in Brisbane. The family home was at Goomeri, in the South Burnett district.

Legendary New Zealand league writer, John Coffey emails from Christchurch. A league player in his younger days – on the West Coast  – John has written several books on the code in recent years. I had a beer with him at a bar near ‘The Press’ building in Christchurch in 2005. He was working for ‘The Press’ (newspaper) at the time. Both buildings were destroyed in the 2011 earth quake.

Rick Stone is sacked as coach of the Newcastle Knights, with Danny Buderus the interim boss.


Tegan Jennings from Men of League drives me to Redcliffe to interview noted car dealer, Bob Aldons for the MOL magazine. Bob is a great benefactor for the charity and has always been a league man, employing a number of Redcliffe Dolphins players over the years.

A woman driver almost hits a bridge railing as she madly texts. Scary stuff.

On Fox Sports, Qld Origin legend, Billy Moore describes New Zealand Warriors’ footy as ‘coconut style’. I think he got away with it.


Attacked by a magpie at Windsor today. The first time this has happened this early in the year. It must be global warming.

Spoiled for choice on TV tonight with the Roosters playing the Bulldogs and the Ashes Cricket Test from Birmingham. Switch between both. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves turns in a super human performance for the Roosters in their thrilling 38-28 win. Roosters’ Fijian prop, Kane Evans levels giant Samoan, Sam Kasiano with a shoulder charge. (We lose the cricket by 8 wickets).

The beautiful Exmoor village of Winsford is featured on Escape to the Country today. I first went there in 1982, for lunch. The previous night I had stayed in a B & B at Dulverton, and caught up with an insurance industry group having quite a few ales at a local pub. When I asked about places to dine the following day, they recommended the Royal Oak at Winsford, a pub featured on Qantas posters advertising flights to the UK. I took my 1990 Kangaroo Tour Group to the pub on a beautiful autumn day, (when pheasant shooters were returning from the hunt), for an ale in the thatched building. We all got along splendidly. Marie and I were back there in 2011, and I reckon those same shooters were there.


Mum and Dad’s great friend, Terry Duncan from Lismore, turns 91 today. A tiny woman, she is larger than life in personality. Her late husband, Errol, was a ‘big wheel’ in the Main Roads Department, and a great story teller. Reminded me a bit of Jack Lemon.

Tonight, the Ricketts clan gather at Stattler and Waldorf in Caxton street to toast our late parents, with money left over from the distribution of their estate. My youngest brother, Stewart has been contemplating a trip to Belgium for F1 racing, but changes his mind because he thinks the sport is boring these days.


Royal Oak, Winsford

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