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Mid North News

STAGE ONE OF PORT MACQUARIE MENTAL HEALTH UNIT COMPLETE

Construction of stage one of the $17.5 million Port Macquarie Mental Health Unit is complete with keys to the facility now firmly in the hands of the Mid North Coast Local Health District. The facility includes secure patient rooms with en suites, dining and lounge areas, a multi-function activity room and outdoor courtyard. “What we have is a contemporary, mental health inpatient unit that is fit for purpose to offer a wellness and recovery to those people who experience mental health or alcohol and drug concerns in the Port area.” Patients and staff will move into the new area over the next two weeks.   (Audio in parts)

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FIRE AT TINGHA DOWNGRADED TO “WATCH AND ACT”

*UPDATE* Gilgai Firefighters are working on the eastern side of Gilgai in the vicinity of the Inverell Airport and Ponds Creek area. Crews are working to slow the spread of the fire, assisted by aircraft. Old Mill Crews are conducting backburns on the eastern side of Old Mill. This will extend to Old Armidale Road. There will be an increase in fire activity and smoke in the area while these burns are undertaken. There is a reduced threat to properties. Firefighters continue to work with landholders in the area.     The fire at Tingha is at Emergency Warning level. Overnight the fire spread in a northerly direction towards Gilgai, Ponds Creek, Old Mill and Stannifer. There is a threat ti lives and properties in the area. Easterly winds this morning may push the fire closer to the Gilgai area …

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ARMED ROBBERY IN PORT MACQUARIE

Police are appealing for information following an armed robbery in Port Macquarie. It’s understood three men entered a hotel on Hastings River Drive just after 10:30 last night. The men reportedly armed with an axe, tomahawk and knife threatened three staff members who were counting the days takings, before leaving with a sum of cash. The men are described as being of Aboriginal / Torres Strait Islander appearance and were wearing hooded tops with their faces and hands partially covered. Anyone with information is urged to call Crime Stoppers.

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CALLS FOR KOALA NATIONAL PARK

Anti-logging protesters have staged a rally outside the Forestry Corporation offices in Coffs Harbour, calling for the creation of a Great Koala National Park. State greens candidate for Coffs Harbour, Jonathan Cassell, says koala habitat is under threat. “we are raising awareness of the impact logging is having on our local forests, there is no doubt we are seeing the impacts on our threatened species such as koalas.” Mr Cassell says a national park stretching from Woolgoolga to Scotts Head has the potential to become a major tourist attraction.

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