Small town, big idea

CLOCK COMMITTEE: Jamberoo locals Alan Smith, John Klepczarek, John Howes, Kel Milne and Warwick Sporne with IGA's Teagan Fuz, all want a town clock. Picture: Rebecca Fist
CLOCK COMMITTEE: Jamberoo locals Alan Smith, John Klepczarek, John Howes, Kel Milne and Warwick Sporne with IGA's Teagan Fuz, all want a town clock. Picture: Rebecca Fist

Five men sit on the self-acclaimed ‘Table of Big Ideas’ each morning in Jamberoo.

In their coffee-time conversations there are plenty of laughs, truth be told they spend most of the time roasting each other.

But there is one thing they are deadly serious about – the need for a town clock in Jamberoo.

Tradesman Warwick Sporne, policeman John Klepczarek, firefighter John Howes, paramedic Kel Milne and farmer Alan Smith have talked about it for years on the Table of Big Ideas, not to be confused with Wollongong’s defunct Table of Knowledge, and now they’re going to make it happen.

“Look at every country town, it has a town clock in it,” Mr Sporne said.

“Of course we’d like to put one up in keeping with the integrity of the buildings here.”

Everyone agreed.

“We need a clock that represents Jamberoo, something with a bit of charisma,” Mr Klepczarek said.

Jamberoo IGA is the ideal spot and owner Trevor Fredericks is all for the idea.

The men found Kiama Council had limited scope to fund a town clock, and want to call on Kiama MP Gareth Ward for state government funding opportunities.

Mr Ward invited them to meet with him in the upcoming week.

The men are willing to do their own fundraising, too, so if you see them on the BBQ out the front of the IGA, buy a snag or two.

And that’s about as serious as the clock banter gets.

“Well, we need to know when it’s 10am, so we can move from the coffee shop to the pub,” Mr Klepczarek said.

“Let’s get one of those clocks that goes off every 15 minutes to annoy everyone,” Mr Howes said. 

“Maybe we can find one with a cow that comes out and moos on the hour,” Mr Sporne said.

Mr Milne is notoriously late to everything, so they joked about setting it 23 minutes early to force him to turn up on time.

There’s talk about travelling to Switzerland for clock-related research, with a few stop overs on the way.

But they are far more likely to consult with the Kiama and District Historical Society to see if there’s a market for heritage clocks in Australia.

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