Growing district’s bursting with expertise

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THE district of Gungahlin has seen a lot of changes this year with the introduction of the light rail and, more recently, the announcement of the new ACT Labor member for Yerrabi, Deepak-Raj Gupta. 

And as one of Australia’s fastest growing regions, it’s expected to keep changing. 

The town of Gungahlin had a population of just 389 residents in 1991. But the district as a whole, according to the census, had a population of 70,871 in 2016, an increase from 46,971 in the 2011 census. 

This figure is expected to hit 83,167 by 2020, according to the ACT government report “ACT Population Projections 2017 to 2020”. 

Quilt care ensures winter warmth

LOCALLY owned and proud of it, family-owned Mitchell business Therma Quilts specialises in making and servicing feather and down products such as quilts, pillows and cushions that have been keeping Canberrans warm since the ’80s.

As the weather gets colder, it can even make quilts bigger or smaller to suit any changes in bed sizes since last winter. 

Using quality textiles, the seamstresses at Therma Quilts hand-make every item suited to the customer’s needs and provide a top-up service when quilts and pillows show signs of wear or loss of warmth and fluffiness.

“Servicing of feather and down products is essential for keeping them in optimal condition for comfort,” says a Therma Quilts spokeswoman. 

“With time and usage, body proteins and lipids (natural oils and perspiration) are absorbed on to quilt casings and into the feather and down inside.

“Over time, this build-up dampens the down, which causes it to lose its thermal resistance. However, regular servicing of your quilts would ensure that your down is fresh, fluffy and keeps you nice and warm during winter.

“With time and usage, the fabrics on quilts wear out and get thin, but once holes appear there is no need to throw away your quilt.

“Whether you’re wanting to rejuvenate your quilt, customise it or buy a new custom-made one, we can look after you.”

Therma Quilts, 10-12 Kemble Court, Mitchell. Call 6241 6859 or visit

Rivoland ‘tiles’ its way to showroom excellence 

NESTLED in the industrial area of north Canberra is Rivoland Tiles’ Mitchell showroom and trade centre, one of the best tile showrooms in the region, according to general manager James Hibberson. 

“We have received commendations from customers and suppliers as being one of the best showrooms they have seen,” James says.

“[We have] displays to inspire in a comfortably-sized [space which] makes selecting tiles an enjoyable experience.”

Staying abreast of design trends, James says Rivoland Tiles is also proud to offer one of the biggest tile ranges in eastern Australia. 

“There is always something new and different to look at and explore,” says James, who is proud of his expert, friendly staff. 

“The showroom staff boast a myriad of experience and knowledge across all works and aspects of residential and commercial projects and are more than happy to assist you with your needs. 

“Having the trade centre on site ensures we meet all your tiling needs. “Renovators and professionals will find a comprehensive range of products and tools which, teamed with expert advice, ensures the best possible finish and complete solution for every project.”

And, James says, the Mitchell location is close to new developments and established suburbs where many redevelopments and renovating are taking place.

Rivoland Tiles Showroom, 55-57 Darling Street, Mitchell. Call 6241 1557 or visit

Pastor Matt McGaw.

Vibrant church grows with the region

FOR the past 11 years, Fusion City Church has been privileged to see Gungahlin grow alongside its church. 

The church was pioneered by pastors Matt and Gill McGaw in 2008 with a vision to build a contemporary, legacy-building church that would help people know and enjoy God, discover their purpose and make a difference.

“Our expression is vibrant and contemporary and you will love the warm, family atmosphere, sense of community and diverse age range,” says senior pastor Matt.

On Sundays Fusion City Church hosts a 10am service at Palmerston Primary School and a new Sunday Night Live service at 5pm at Fusion LifeCENTRE in Hoskins Street, Mitchell. 

“Sunday Night Live is an hour-long service followed by a light supper,” Matt says.

“We also have a range of mid-week community programs and groups on offer, as well as our fun-filled Ignite Youth program on Friday nights during term.”

Fusion City Church. Call 6156 2497, email or visit 

Discounts for ‘special’ dogs

BARKROYAL Dog Day Spa & Day Care grooms dogs in all shapes and sizes, says owner Debbie Hart. 

Having worked with animals for more than 30 years, Debbie started the Nicholls-based business in 2017 because she wanted to work with pets every day. 

Debbie, who owns four dogs and is the head groomer, says she specialises in grooming special-needs dogs such as blind dogs, older dogs and difficult dogs who might need extra attention. 

“We love rescue dogs and offer a free groom for recently rescued dogs,” Debbie says.

“Service dogs receive a half-price discount as well.”

In addition to the grooming service, Debbie offers day care for people who want to give their dogs a social experience or need them out of the house. 

“We have wonderful, loyal clients who love what we do for their dogs,” she says. 

BarkRoyal Dog Day Spa & Day Care, Eve Place, Nicholls. Call 0419 446163, email or visit

Runners shop puts its best foot forward

SUPPORTING local runners is a big part of what The Runners Shop does, says owner Nick Walshe.

“We support local running events, triathlons and create partnerships with gyms in the Gungahlin area,” says Nick who opened the shop on Hibberson Street four years ago and has been the owner of The Runners Shop (also in Phillip) for the past 10 years. 

“Over that time, customers have been coming back to us a lot and some people are just finding out about us for the first time,” he says.

The Runners Shop stocks all the leading brands of trainers, racing shoes, minimalist shoes, cross trainers and walking shoes. 

Nick says the team at The Runners Shop are all running enthusiasts who are happy to help customers find the right gear.

“Running is great for you – both physically and mentally,” he says.

“The challenge is to manage the amount of miles you can do and replace your running shoes when they are worn to remain injury free. 

“I have been running since I was 15 years old and competed in nine marathons and 25 half marathons. 

“Nowadays I fit running in where I can but it’s been my hobby and passion for many years.” 

The Runners Shop, upstairs at 46-50 Hibberson Street, Gungahlin. Call 6241 7054 or visit

Computer ‘geek’ moves to the northside

Craig the Computer Geek Craig Plaister.

AFTER setting up shop in Gungahlin last year, computer expert Craig Plaister is now the “local geek” of both Weston Creek, where he does a lot of work, and Gungahlin

Craig, who owns Craig the Computer Geek, will continue to do home and workplace visits to repair and upgrade computers across Canberra but he says his Gungahlin shop front allows customers to bring their computers to him. 

Craig the Computer Geek offers business solutions, home services and web services such as home and office network set-up, virus removal, off-site backups, disaster recovery, custom PC builds and security systems. 

And, with 30 years’ experience in information technology, Craig is a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer and is highly experienced in Windows administration. 

He has experience building and repairing PCs and laptops and troubleshooting all types of computer related problems.

Lately, he’s been helping customers improve the speed and get more life out of their PCs by upgrading their performance through installing solid state drives. 

“They are lighter, faster and less fragile than ever and a good alternative for people wanting to get another couple of years out of their PCs,” he says. 

Craig can also help create websites for small businesses and bloggers. 

Craig The Computer Geek, 315 Gundaroo Drive, Gungahlin. Call 0411 147909 or visit 

Director Adrian Southern, right, sponsoring Yarralumla Primary School “star awards”.

Friendly agent gives back

WITH many years’ property experience, Gungahlin-based real estate agent Adrian Southern established his boutique real estate and property management business, Southern Property Canberra, seven years ago. 

Adrian is not tied to the Gungahlin region and sells and leases properties all over Canberra.

He says he loves helping clients fulfil their dreams and strives to be approachable, genuine and real, breaking down the perception that real estate agents can be arrogant or slimey.

“Real estate agents have progressed to now being like a counsellor and a friend,” he says.

“I become so involved with my clients’ lives, helping them get to the next step in their lives.”

And, when people choose Southern Property, clients deal solely with Adrian. 

“I look after and am accountable for everything I do in my business,” he says.

Adrian also uses his business to give back to the community. As the father of a nine-year-old, Adrian says he knows first-hand the importance of supporting local schools and currently sponsors Yarralumla Primary School’s “star awards”. 

“I have been supporting school awards for many years and I love presenting the star awards to the children at Yarralumla Primary every fortnight,” he says. 

Southern Property Canberra. Call 0400 509262, email or visit

Solicitors offer affordable legal solutions

WMG Legal director and solicitor Chris Malfone.

WHEN locals need reliable and affordable legal help they turn to the qualified and experienced team at WMG Legal, says its director and solicitor Chris Malfone. 

“We pride ourselves on giving good value legal representation,” says Chris, who, along with fellow director and principal solicitor Wayne Warton, have been working together to bring Canberrans valuable legal solutions since 2015. 

Together they offer a range of legal services such as property conveyancing, transactions, commercial matters, wills and estates, work and motor vehicle accident injuries, litigation and dispute resolution, and loan agreements. 

“We are more accessible to clients as they are dealing with the owners of the business directly,” Chris says. 

“Affordability is an important aspect of what we provide as well. 

“Our team recognises that sound legal advice should not cost the earth.

“We are pleased to offer a free, no-obligation initial chat to understand your legal problem and how we can help you.”

WMG Legal, suite 4, 75 Gozzard Street, Gungahlin. Call 6253 9766, email or visit 

David’s deal gets bikes ready for spring

WHEN a bike is booked in to get serviced at Cookies Cycles throughout August, locals in the Gungahlin area can get their bike picked up and dropped off for free. 

It’s important to get bicycles serviced every 12 months, according to the owner of Cookies Cycles, David Cook, who says they will collect any bikes from a Gungahlin home in the morning or evening and drop them off after the service the next evening. 

“Just as you would for a car, push bikes need services to check gears and brakes to make sure they’re working right and won’t break down,” David says. 

“[And] it’s a saving of $20 off the usual price for this service.”

David says now’s the time to get bike-ready for spring, so it’s in a good, working condition for the warmer months – especially the bikes which haven’t been ridden for some time. 

It’s also a good time to think about putting a bike on layby for Christmas presents, says David. 

“We have a large range of bikes and scooters in stock, ready to go,” he says.         

Cookies Cycles, 227 Flemington Road, Franklin. Call 6242 0338, email or visit

The Mitchell Traders Association.

Website helps locals find Mitchell experts

WITH about 400 businesses offering everything from coffee to car parts,  Mitchell is home to some of Canberra’s best products and services, according to the Mitchell Traders Association, who created a website called FindItInMitchell last year. 

A spokesman from the Mitchell Traders Association says they established as an online business directory to help people find what they are looking for in Mitchell.

“FindItInMitchell was started with a simple purpose – to showcase the hundreds of great businesses that call Mitchell home,” he says. 

“With businesses offering everything from car repairs to coffee, VR experiences, home renovations and more, you’re bound to find something you love in Mitchell.” 

FindItInMitchell. Visit

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