Couple takes over Allora garage, while show proves popular
MONDAY, February 2 saw the end of an era at one of Allora's long existing and respected businesses, Whites Garage. Allora locals Tim Hentschel and fiancé Rhianna Wiggan took over the helm of the long standing Allora business from Matt and Tracey Heslin, Matt having worked in the building, some of which is 136 years old, that stands at 13 Drayton Street in 'the Best Little Town on the Downs'.
Matt commenced his apprenticeship at Whites Garage, owned by his parents Doug and Merrilyn Heslin at the time, plying his trade in the same building for the past 29 years, later taking ownership of the business with wife Tracey in 1998.
New proprietors Tim and Rhianna are more than pleased with their first week as business owners, its "great to be back" said the modest automotive technician/auto electrician who was raised in Allora, the son of Glenn and Margaret Hentschel.
Tim is a well known face around Allora, educated at the Allora State School and later the Warwick State High School, before following his dream and completing an apprenticeship from 2003 - 2007 at the very business he and Rhianna now own.
Head of Whites Garage administration, and arguably the 'real boss', Rhianna, has resided around the State during her childhood, but since arriving in Warwick she attended St Mary's Primary School and Warwick State High before working for four years as a Dental Nurse, and then becoming involved in the real estate industry.
Owning his own business has been a strong motivation for Tim since joining the workforce, and it is ironic that his first day in the work force back in 2003 was at the very same location as his first day as a business owner in 2015, along with Rhianna.
In recent times Tim has operated High Voltage Auto Electrical in Warwick sharing the 29 Percy Street workshop with fellow Allora local Sam Baker and his wife Jess, their business SnJ Precision Automotive.
Tim and Rhianna discovered that Whites Garage was for sale in October on Facebook. From there "things happened quickly" said Tim, "it was a dream opportunity and we took over last Monday".
After completing his automotive technician apprenticeship, Tim embarked on some world travel that saw him reside in and visit 29 countries. It was certainly educational times for the young adventurer from Allora, basing himself in London for a time and exploring Europe, Egypt, a visit to Gallipoli and also a trek into the Himalayas on a separate trek, all of which is just a taste of his travel experiences.
While in London Tim's mechanical talents saw him working for AA Breakdown, a roadside vehicle breakdown service in central London. "it was certainly an experience towing vehicles across London's Tower Bridge."
On returning to Australia the happy wanderer completed an apprenticeship in Auto Electrics with Warwick firm B and K Motors.
The glamour of the Allora speedway circuit lured Tim in 2003, and he tasted success in the Allora Show Demolition Derby, his talent and toughness of his 'shortened' Whites Garage Volvo ensuring victory in his first attempt.
Currently Tim is Vice-President of Wattles Rugby League Club, having served on the club committee for a number of years, and was a member of last season's A Grade premiership winning team, an experience he insists will "stay with him always."
An extremely talented athlete who represented his region at junior and senior player levels, Tim has worn the Wattles 'Green and Gold' across the last 22 years since he played Under 7, has been recognised for playing over 100 matches with the club and at Toowoomba Rugby League level won the prestigious "Frank Purcell Memorial Trophy" in 2003 as the best and fairest player in all grades in the TRL competition.
Joining Tim and Rhianna on staff at Whites Garage is another well known to locals in fellow automotive technician Tom Cocks. Local identity Tom, well respected for his knowledge and experience, has also tread the floorboards of the Whites Garage workshop prior to spending recent years with Warwick Automatic Transmission Service.
Tim and Rhianna are still in the "settling in phase" of their new business, but they are more than pleased with the support they are getting from the local community.
"The initial eight business days have been eleven hour days and more" say the happy couple, "but we have had great support since day one and look forward to building the business and continuing its good name within the Allora region community."
The lightning fast rugby league three-quarter may see his season pass gather a little dust this year, "you have to prioritise" says Tim.
Rhianna and Tim are proud to say White's Garage can assure the local community they will be upholding the same high level of service that has been evident over so many years.
"We will continue to offer all mechanical services as well as auto-electrical, wheel alignments, safety certificates, air-conditioning repairs and many other services, as well as providing and installing Supercharge batteries, GME UHF radios and LED light bars".
It's been a time of partnerships for Tim and Rhianna, a recent engagement, a business partnership and now they look forward to an ongoing partnership servicing the Allora and district community.
Pink Stumps Day
Allora Pink Stumps Day event organiser and breast care nurse Athaline Mulhall is hoping to see a big crowd at the Allora Cricket Oval on Saturday February 21st, contributing to the local efforts in fundraising for the McGrath Foundation while being treated to some eye catching cricket action.
Allora will join community's right across Australia when they don pink on Saturday, to support the McGrath Foundation. Funds raised ensure that every family in Australia experiencing breast cancer has access to a breast care nurse, no matter where they live or their financial situation.
By hosting a Pink Stumps Day, the Allora community is helping to make a difference to the lives of families experiencing breast cancer in Australia.
The Allora Pink Stumps Day commences at 11.30 am with the cricket action under way at 12.00 noon with a ladies match, the pretty in pink 'Warwick Health Service' verses the 'Allora Ladies', a fearsome challenge to get the day underway.
Following on at 2.30 pm we will see an Allora Cricket Club side take on the fearless might of the 'Allora District Old Blokes', a clash that will highlight some stunning athleticism.
Aside from the two big matches, the afternoon is activity rich with face painting and jumping castle, all free. Patrons can also enjoy bar facilities, delicious food, soft drinks, raffles and an auction.
The raffles include a multi-draw with prizes of a '1750 ml 18 Year Old Bottle of Chivas Regal Scotch in a case and a wheelbarrow of assorted goods and beverages.
At the completion of both games the 'Pink Stumps' cricket gear as well as a cricket ball and hat signed by Australian Test cricketer will be auctioned.
For further information contact Athaline or Ray on 4666 6293.
'Phil and Sue Thanked and Honoured'
The Allora Sports Club committee voted recently to award 'Honorary Membership' for 2015 to well-known and widely respected Allora locals Phil and Sue Higgins. The honorary membership was bestowed as recognition for the invaluable assistance that Phil and Sue provided to the Sports Club in preparing and submitting a grant to assist in the renovation and refurbishment of the kitchen facilities at the Sports Club.
When Phil and Sue learned that the Sports Club was applying for a grant, they immediately volunteered to assist in whatever way they could, and without their help it is unlikely that the application would have been successful.
The grant application subsequently gained approval and the kitchen renovations were completed last month.
Days for the Girls
For those ladies involved in Allora's 'Days for the Girls', it is time to collect the great work done by so many over the last three months. Many people have been sewing, cutting, ordering materials, fund raising and planning. Next Thursday, February 19 at 9am, helpers will be gathering at Mary McKillop Meeting Room in Warwick Street, Allora at the rear of the former convent. Please Note the Change of Venue.
It will be an opportunity to gather, bring in finished work, pick up new materials, donate suitable fabrics, launch our multi-draw raffle and update the group on further developments.
New members are welcome to find out more information and see how the process works.
If you can't make the gathering, contact Mrs Rosemary Easton on 0408973474 to arrange a pick-up.
Goomburra Hall Trivia Night
Goomburra Town Hall Ambassador and trivia connesiour John O'Brien is a regular face at trivia nights and challenges around the region, and tomorrow evening Friday, February 13th John and the Goomburra Hall committee extend a warm welcome to everyone to take part in "Goomburra Hall's Trivia Night Number 3".
The Trivia Night is a great evening of fun entertainment, and is a fundraiser that supports further maintenance and repairs to historic Goomburra Hall.
Attending triviaists can bring a team of up to eight, or just come along and be teamed up in a group of other knowledgeable folk. You will be challenged across nine rounds on a variety of themes, where the judge's decision is final.
The night also boasts cash and door prizes and raffles along with tasty light refreshments throughout the evening including beer, wine and soft drinks.
Admission is a more than reasonable $10.00 per person, bookings to be made through John O'Brien (4666 6050), and tickets will be available on the night at the door.
John's put together some challenging questions for those who consider themselves 'Trivia Buffs', and here's a couple from 'Goomburra Valley Trivia King' as warm ups !
Which team won the Toowoomba Rugby League A Grade premiership in 2014 ?....
Who is the current Premier of Queensland ?....
He won't guarantee they will be among the trivia teasers posed on the night though !