Another round of neighbourhood dressage
Advertisement

Another round of neighbourhood dressage

With the Parsley Bay summer lull well and truly over, the residents of Sydney’s eastern suburbs are back doing what they do best — preparing for another round of neighbourhood dressage.

Where to start? Former IPH chief executive David Griffith made a motza in November 2016 after he offloaded half his shareholding in the intellectual property law firm for $17.5 million.

Former IPH chief executive David Griffith and his family has splashed out $5.5 million for a Vaucluse home. Illustration: John Shakespeare

Former IPH chief executive David Griffith and his family has splashed out $5.5 million for a Vaucluse home. Illustration: John ShakespeareCredit:

He dumped his remaining holdings by the middle of last year.

Between hoisting himself upon Cadence Capital’s Opportunities Fund board and hocking his IPH stock, Griffith and family found the time in July last year to fork out $5.5 million for the Vaucluse trophy home once owned by the German consul-general.

Advertisement

The property, sold by Sotheby’s International, is now in the name of his daughter Holly with major renovation works planned. What 30-year-old could possibly live in a home which only comes with a sitting room, informal living room and formal living room?

Of course a rumpus room is required.

Those works are expected to set Griffith back $2 million.

Habour views and Spanish Eyes

Down the road, having recuperated from their son Allan's messy waterfront redevelopment fight several years ago, Toga Group hotelier Ervin Vidor and his wife Charlotte are planning on splashing out $3.4 million to update the Clairvaux Road house purchased in 2011 for $2.7 million.

Former Macquarie forex executive director Simon Wright is also planning work on the family's $22 million Queen Anne-style Bellevue Hill residence Caerlon, in this case a futuristic garden pavilion modestly described by architect Phillip Arnold of Plus Minus Design as “something very special”.

At $350,000 for a (stunning) garden shed, we’d hope so.

But our eyes came to rest on the intricate detail of plans lodged by former Macquarie banker turned KPMG partner Phillip Ransom, who is upgrading his 1906 cottage near Woollahra's Cooper Park.

He’s considering a number of colours palettes for the facade, including “Spanish Eyes”, which we are informed is not just a schmaltzy, wear a sombrero and set-yourself-on-fire ballad performed by Engelbert Humperdinck but also a shade of grey.

Talkback stars almost lost for words

“Any political party that approaches the station for an opportunity to put its position forward should not be denied, but rather, if you do not wish to put them to air in a program, they must be referred to the sales department.”

That’s part of the confidential legal advice provided by Macquarie Media’s general counsel Alessandra Steele to 2GB and 3AW staff.

Macquarie Media, home to influential radio stars including Alan Jones, is preparing for the coming elections.

Macquarie Media, home to influential radio stars including Alan Jones, is preparing for the coming elections.Credit:Alex Ellinghausen

The advice has left some of the country’s most influential talkback hosts unimpressed given it contains many byzantine rules about how and who to bring on air, and when.

Loading

“In my view this is unworkable,” 3AW’s breakfast host Neil Mitchell wrote in an (accidental) all-persons response on Monday afternoon.

Our man in Bleak City has a point.

We can’t imagine 2GB’s Alan Jones or Ray Hadley will have much time for these rules, put in place as the March state election and the May federal election approach.

Each producer must have "written evidence of an invitation given to each politician ... who appears on the station”, but not if they call through the talkback line.

And best of all, if a politician “suggests a topic to discuss” on air, the producer must make sure to turn that around and invite them, in writing, to “discuss this today, if that suits you”.

Who could decline such a polite offer?

Secret spinners

For an outfit that counsels its members against eating or socialising with outsiders, the secretive Exclusive Brethren sure have a lot of spinners.

While Chinese technology giant Huawei might be struggling to find a public relations operator, the Brethren (now the Plymouth Brethren) have added Australian Public Affairs to their roster.

And they still work with Wells Haslem Mayhew, chaired by former John Howard staffer John Wells, who was first engaged by the church a decade ago.

APA is best-known for its chief executive Tracey Cain, a Knox Grammar board member who lobbied for confectionary companies while her husband, Alastair Furnival, was the chief of staff to former assistant health minister Fiona Nash (he later resigned).

Kylar Loussikian is The Sydney Morning Herald's CBD columnist.

Samantha is the The Age's CBD columnist. She recently covered Victorian and NSW politics and business for News Corp, and previously worked for the Australian Financial Review.

Most Viewed in National

Loading
Advertisement