TOPICS: Searching the world for Waratah Public's class of 1967 and Newcastle council's Twitter war

HAPPY CHAPPIES: The smiling young faces of Waratah Public School's class of 1967. Ross Kerridge (fifth left, second row) is hoping to track down all of his old classmates for a reunion. He has already found their teacher.
HAPPY CHAPPIES: The smiling young faces of Waratah Public School's class of 1967. Ross Kerridge (fifth left, second row) is hoping to track down all of his old classmates for a reunion. He has already found their teacher.

A GLOBAL search is under way to track down three students of Waratah Public School’s class of ’67 in an audacious bid to reunite old pals.

Newcastle anaesthetist Ross Kerridge is leading the charge and has already managed to track down 28 students, as well as, remarkably, the teacher, Bruce Deitz, now in his 80s.

The students were mostly found using Facebook and Google searches, with nearly all still residing in Newcastle. Four had died.

A “surprise”, Dr Kerridge said, were the amazing lives that many of the students enrolled in Waratah’s “opportunity class” now lived.

One former student is a German baroness, while John Rothfield – the brother of journalists Mark and Buzz, and son of retired Broadmeadow GP Neville Rothfield – is a leading economist in California, managing a retirement scheme worth more than $1 billion for the state’s 1.6 million public servants. Not bad for Waratah Public.

The missing students include Greg Mitchell, Robert Lovett and Greg Dowling.

Do you know the whereabouts of the three men? Phone Topics on 4979 5905 or email brodie.owen@fairfaxmedia.com.au.

Tweets get narky

SIN BIN: Newcastle council's Twitter account has used its blocking powers.

SIN BIN: Newcastle council's Twitter account has used its blocking powers.

BLOCKED by Newcastle City Council and in the digital sin bin.

Ed Crawford, the former chairman of the Hunter chapter of the Property Council, is “off to the virtual gulag” after a bizarre exchange with the council’s official Twitter account on Saturday.

It began when Ed replied to a viral slapstick humour video retweeted by the council.

“Your rates at work, folks,” Ed tweeted. 

“Actually Edward we don’t get paid on Saturday. Figured you would have known that,” council shot back. 

“Why would I know?” said Ed, bemused.

The council suggested Ed stop being a “troll” and instead take advantage of the beautiful weekend weather in Newcastle.

Ed said he would unfollow council’s Twitter.

But the digital gurus in the Roundhouse pulled out the big guns.

“Ed, it appears u don’t know how to unfollow on twitter. We will block u which will have the same effect,” was the council’s final reply to Ed, before hitting the block button.

Speaking to Topics on day two of life in the digital wilderness, Ed said he’d obviously done the wrong thing in firing off the first digital missive.

“I had the outrageous audacity to tweet, (I realise now in a fit of deranged madness), 'Your rates at work, folks’,” he said.

“Up goes the virtual drawbridge, and off to the virtual gulag with me. Apparently I did a bad thought crime.”

Topics hopes the digital banishment is short-lived.

Until then, Ed wants to know if there’s some rate relief on the way, seeing as council workers aren’t paid on Saturdays.

“I'll ask, via carrier pigeon,” he said, cheekily.