Meet ‘Australia’s greatest detective’ in Rochester

By Anna McGuinness

TICKETS are now on sale for the official opening of the newest tourist attraction in Rochester, Iddles Lane.

In what will be one of Ron Iddles’ last public speaking events, ‘Australia’s Greatest Detective’ will return to his hometown to see the story of his life immortalised in paint.

Rochester Business Network president Glenda Nichol, who managed the project, said she couldn’t wait for what will be a great weekend.

“I’m really excited, I sent Ron progress photos at the end of each day while the mural was being painted and I just can’t wait for him to see the finished product — I know Barry (Ron’s twin) has already come to see it,” she said.

“I think it’s great for Rochester, I’ve been told there are two Probus clubs coming to visit in March to see the silos, sports museum and Iddles Lane; we’ve got multiple things for them to see now, it’s wonderful,” she said.

“We’re all working together as a community and it’s great for the town that people are coming to see our artwork.”

Organisers are still working on the beautification and lighting of the laneway, but Glenda said if nothing else, “it’s tidied up a very ordinary laneway”.

At 11am on Sunday, March 15 the official opening will take place at the mural next to Rochester Discounts on Gillies St.

Master of ceremonies Graham Willis will interview Glenda as well as Ron and Barry Iddles, Federal Member for Nicholls Damian Drum and artist Tim Bowtell.

“It’s a free event and everyone’s welcome to come down; it’s about thanking everyone and the volunteers that helped out and celebrating what we have achieved,” Glenda said.

There will also be an opportunity to have a chat with Ron, as he will be dropping by local eateries where everyone is encouraged to enjoy lunch after the opening.

Later that day, the Ron and Barry Iddles Up Close event will take place at 2.30pm at the Campaspe Valley Community Centre.

Ron will be giving an hour-long presentation on his career as a homicide detective. Glenda said he usually focuses on one particular case but audiences will have to wait to find out what it will be.

Ron and Barry will then be interviewed by Graham, followed by afternoon tea provided by the Rochester Secondary College parents club.

The project was made possible through a grant from the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment

Tickets are available for $32 at Dingwalls Newsagency in Rochester or online through trybooking