• Short Summary

    AT FIRST GLANCE, LIGHTNING RIDGE MIGHT NOT SEEM LIKE THE IDEAL HOLIDAY RESORT. IT IS?

  • Description

    AT FIRST GLANCE, LIGHTNING RIDGE MIGHT NOT SEEM LIKE THE IDEAL HOLIDAY RESORT. IT IS A DUSTY LITTLE TOWN UP IN THE NORTH OF WESTERN NEW SOUTH WALES, AUSTRALIA, JUST A FEW SHOPS, AND A BAUL. BUT PEOPLE DO SPEND HOLIDAYS THERE. IT IS BECOMING POPULAR WITH TOURISTS SEEKING SOMETHING DIFFERENT TO DO DURING THEIR HOLIDAYS. THEY COME FROM ALL PARTS OF AUSTRALIA.

    AFTER BREAKFAST, STRAIGHT DOWN TO THE SLAG HEAPS. THAT IS THE ATTRACTION. LIGHTNING RIDGE HAS BEEN AN OPAL MINING CENTRE, AND HOLIDAY PROSPECTORS CAN STILL PICK UP SOME STONES AROUND THE OLD DIGGINGS. IT LENDS SOMETHING TO A HOLIDAY.

    JACK CHRISTIANOS BROUGHT HIS WHOLE FAMILY FROM ADELAIDE TO LOOK FOR OPALS. THE MEN TOOK OVER OLD MINE, ON THE CHANCE THAT ITS OPAL POCKET MIGHT NOT BE COMPLETELY PLAYED OUT. THE WOMEN CONTENTED THEMSELVES WITH TURNING OVER THE OLD SLAP HEAPS IN A SEARCH FOR STONES THAT HAD BEEN MISSED. THEY USED A MACHINE KNOWN AS A "PUDDLER" TO SHAKE OPAL TAILINGS LOOSE FROM THE DIRT. AN ENTERPRISING BUSINESSMAN IN LIGHTNING RIDGE HAS CASHED IN ON THE BOOM BY HIRING THESE MACHINES TO THE PART TIME PROSPECTOR.

    THE HOLIDAYMAKERS HAVE HAD A MIXED RECEPTION FROM THE TWENTY OR SO FULL TIME MINERS STILL LEFT AT LIGHTNING RIDGE. SOME OLD TIMERS SAY THE BOOM HAS SPOILED THEIR PRIVACY. OTHERS WELCOME THE MONEY THE VISITORS BRING IN. THE AMATEUR OPAL SEEKERS SELDOM MAKE A PROFIT. MOST ARE HAPPY TO FIND A SMALL PIECE TO "POTCH" AS IT IS CALLED, WITH SOME COLOUR IN IT.

    ONE PERMANENT RESIDENT, MR. GEORGE REES, EARNS MONEY SORTING THE TAILINGS - THE ROUGH STONES - AND CAREFULLY CUTTING FOR "SNIPING" THEM LOOKING FOR OPAL TRACES. OPAL IS PLENTIFUL, BUT IS MOSTLY UNCOLOURED "POTCH" A WORTHLESS GREY TO BLACK STONE. THE OPERATOR SNIPS THE EDGES TO SEE IF THE POTCH CARRIES THE RAINBOW COLOURS OF THE VALUABLE OPAL. IF COLOUR SHOWS, THE STONE IS HAND GROUND TO CUT AWAY THE USELESS PARTS. MR PUTLAND, WHO LIVES AT LIGHTNING RIDGE, AND LIKE MOST OF THE RESIDENTS, SPENDS A LOT OF TIME SEARCHING FOR OPAL. HIS DAUGHTER HELPS BY TURNING THE GRINDSTONE.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVADJXZPZ9DJ69XSYAEV8E33CW6D
    Media URN:
    VLVADJXZPZ9DJ69XSYAEV8E33CW6D
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    01/01/1962
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:01:56:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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