GMS News

Our news page is an important part of communicating with our members and interested members of the community.

January 2024

Motorcycle Men's Shed Visit

The Motorcycle Men’s Shed’s first ride for 2024 was a visit to Gidge Men’s Shed. It was the highest number of bikes on a Men’s Shed ride. The group was warmly welcomed by GMS members and enjoyed a lovely morning tea and a talk about their club.

February 2024

Committee Reshuffle

There were a few changes over the break – Bruce Williams and Eric Warren stepped down from their positions of President and Vice President respectively. Andrew Brine is the new Chairperson and Barbara Lauren has taken on the role of Vice President. The current committee also includes Andrew Simpson (Treasurer), Bob Bristow (Secretary), Judy Wilson (Events Coordinator), Eric Warren, Maureen Williams and Tom Quigley. Team Leads are Clieve Williams (Metalwork), Kevin Bamkin (Milling), Eric Warren (Mechanical), Maureen Williams (Mosaics), Charles Coppack (Shed Operations).

March 2024

Presentation for past president Bruce Williams

A special morning tea and presentation was held to thank past president Bruce Williams and acknowledge his outstanding service to GMS. Andrew Brine presented Bruce with a beautiful hand-crafted plaque. Bruce reflected on how far GMS had come in the short time since its inauguration and is looking forward to more exciting times in the future.

April 2024

Wood Wizz

The new second-hand Wood Wizz was set up and operated for the first time. This machine levels out a slab, sands it and then polishes it. The complete job!

May 2024

Watercolour Art Classes

Eastern Metropolitan Regional Council provided a grant for Watercolour Art Classes conducted over a ten week period presented by local artist Jan Pittman.  The classes were well received and the group continues to meet on a weekly basis.

June 2024

Thinking Green - organic garden and wicking beds community presentation

The Thinking Green – organic garden and wicking beds presentation, sponsored by the City of Swan sponsored and hosted by Gidge Men’s Shed, was a huge success with 55 people from the community in attendance.  The pre-presentation BBQ was very popular. One of the highlights of the day was Bruce showcasing his barista skills, preparing freshly brewed coffees.

The presentation included how to make the best use of space in the garden, soil and composting – what you put in is what you’ll get out, companion planting & crop rotation, including succession planting, organic pest control & soil builders for healthier plants and what to do with the excess produce.  Also how to build wicking beds – such a great way to reduce water use whilst still growing healthy and nutrient rich veggies and herbs!

January 2023

Milling Demo & BBQ Event

On a scorching hot day, January 21st, 2023, where the temperature rose to 41C in Gidgegannup, our talented Milling Team demonstrated their skills to showcase the Hardwood Timber Mill to the local community, Men’s Shed of WA, Rotary WA and members of GMS.  The 50 plus crowd who gathered in the shade of the verandah of the Shed enjoyed a BBQ breakfast of sausages, eggs and bacon.  A jarrah log was loaded onto the milling platform, stabilised and levelled before a demonstration on slicing and quarter sawing techniques.  Thank you to our milling team and members who were involved in orchestrating such a successful day.

February 2023

Milling Activity Saturday 18 February

The Hardwood Timber Mill was put to good use sawing some nice timber. The logs didn’t survive the Wooroloo Bushfire and were left on the roadside in Tilden Park. The City of Swan were happy for us to put them to good use – recycling/carbon storage.

Shed Development Stakeholder Engagement

The first stakeholder engagement meeting conducted by the City of Swan (CoS) was held February 9th 2023 to discuss this proposal. Many attendees at the initial stakeholder meeting, requested GMS to re-engage with the CoS to seek the community’s preferred option for GMS to be granted permission to build the new shed in the SE corner of the Showground, in the area of old tennis courts and adjacent bushland. 

March 2023

Volunteer WA Service Award

Gidgegannup Men’s Shed was presented with a volunteer service award from the State Govt, at the Gidgegannup Wellbeing Expo on Saturday 18th March by Rebecca Talbot from Mens Shed of WA.  Well done to all our members for your significant efforts.

Visit to Hanson Quarry

On Friday 31st March several GMS committee & team leads were hosted at Hanson’s Red Hill quarry, by David Kraima (Quarry Mgr), Damon Case (Development Mgr), and Paul (Technical Mgr). The Hanson team welcomed us in their meeting room and presented an overview of their Red Hill quarry operations, in which they mine 1 million tonne per annum predominately (grey) granite, but also several intrusions of the harder (brown/black) dolerite, which combined produces 1/6th of Perth’s blue metal products demand (railway ballast rock, blue metal screened to different sizings, and crusher dust fines). Hanson’s Red Hill Quarry is on a 2,000acre (808 ha) property between Toodyay, Burgess and Neuman roads. To minimise impact on nearby residents, their quarrying is conducted during daytime only (10hrs), with maintenance conducted overnight. All surface plant (conveyors, plate jaw crusher, cyclone crusher, grading screens prior to stockpiles) are enclosed within metal sheds/structures for dust and noise suppression. Their quarry is close to Toodyay Rd, and will gradually extend west towards (but not over) the scarp. They have agreed to limit the potential further Western extension to ensure their quarry won’t be visibly open to the coastal plain. The site includes a couple of substantial dams providing water (50k ltr / day) for their dust suppression water trucks. Blasting is typically done once per week. They have approx 50 employees, mostly delivery truck drivers, with a small (~10?) site-based staff. They’ve a fleet of three 65tn CAT haulpaks, when we were onsite, two haulpaks were carting the quarried rocks to the 500t/hr crusher, then conveyored to the further processing plant.  They currently forecast a further 20yr mine life.

Following the overview presentation, we were taken on a site tour, during which we stopped at a vantage point overlooking the quarry. 

All very interesting – finally peeking into their site after driving past their gate for the last 40yrs!

On return to their site office, Quarry Manager David Kraima presented GMS with a significant stock of Makita battery hand tools. These were an agreed list of tools, including two sets of drills, blowers, routers, planers, circular saws, sanders, jigsaws, all specifically chosen by GMS to equip our expanding carpentry workshop.With three additional carpentry work benches being added to our shed, Hanson’s tool donation will allow more members to work in parallel – a much needed capacity expansion.

We are very grateful for this donation from a local corporate operation and look forward to continuing to work with the Hanson team as we go forward with our new shed plans.

May 2023

Family Fun Day for Eastern Hills Region of Volunteer Fire Fighters

Approximately 100 people (coming and going throughout the afternoon) from across all of the Volunteer Fire Brigades in the Eastern Hills region, together with volunteers from Gidgegannup Men’s Shed, Parkerville Community Care, Gidgegannup CWA and Gidgegannup Community Church, came together at Percy Cullen Oval, Gidgegannup on Sunday 21 May, 2023 to enjoy a Family based games day as part of National Volunteers Week. The weather co-operated beautifully and allowed those in attendance to enjoy a range of games, such as Jenga, Chess, Connect Four, Ring toss, Cornhole Toss and Tug-of-War.  There was also a quiz for those not wanting to do the more physical activities, as well as painting, crafts and face painting for the children.  With plenty of snacks, barbecue foods, salads, fruit platters and cupcakes available, participants appeared happy to be either playing the games, or gathering in groups talking to each other and enjoying the sunshine. .At the end of the afternoon, people commented on how good it was to talk to other volunteer firefighting groups they would not necessarily have much contact with, as well as getting to know members of the other community groups in attendance. Our sincere thanks go to Volunteers WA and Lotterywest for their support in funding this event, as well as to Bendigo Bank for the funding they provided for prizes which were much appreciated by participants.  Vouchers from Gidge Rural and Chidlow Café were also gratefully received.
A huge “Thank You” to all the volunteers, those who helped make this day a success, as well as to all the other volunteers in our community who work tirelessly to make life easier – or even just more interesting – for everyone around them.

June 2023

GMS Celebrate 2nd Anniversary

GMS celebrated our 2nd Anniversary on Saturday 24 June with a 3-course lunch at the Gidgegannup Hall.  A great team effort involved to make this event a success.  Well done everyone! Bruce Williams, our president, paid tribute to the ongoing success of GMS at a members’ meeting prior to the celebration lunch.  GMS was established following the Wooroloo Bushfire in 2021 with a small group of local men and has grown to about 90 members, male and female, with a diversity of activities.  Bruce praised the efforts of everyone for their contribution.  We should also acknowledge the leadership and huge contribution Bruce has provided to our organisation.

The Australian Woodworker Magazine Article

The Australian Woodworker Magazine showcases the activities of Woodworking Clubs and Men’s Shed across the country, in their Club Drumbeat section. The May/June 2023 Issue No. 229 features Gidgegannup Men’s Shed.  

Here is a link to the article: The Australian Woodworker Magazine Issue May/June 2023

July 2023

Fencing Day at Tilden Park

A successful event using our new fencing trailer (made by our metalwork team) and toolkit donated by WA Rotary Relief.  Seventy-five meters of chain-link mesh was installed to replace fire-damaged fencing.  Derek Baxter from WA Farm Shop was onsite to lend a hand with a crew of eager volunteers organised by Peter Dyce.  A BBQ lunch of beef, bacon and egg burgers was provided.