About Hannah Sparks

Hannah Sparks is a regional journalist based in the Southern Tablelands of NSW. She has eight years of experience reporting stories for print and broadcast media including Fairfax Media and ABC Canberra. Home was originally a farm in Devon, UK, where she studied a Bachelor of Journalism.

Today, she writes from a wool farm in the Tablelands where she lives with her partner and their many dogs.

Hannah is passionate about providing regional communities with a voice and always has time for a cuppa and a yarn.

All Articles

Queanbeyan cats face lockdown as containment policy spreads
It would seem the ACT Government's cat containment policy is setting a precedent across the NSW border, with Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council recently deciding to enforce the containment of all cats 24 hours a day in two new Queanbeyan suburbs. The rollout of the new policy is staged: Googong West, Googong South and Googong East, and Jumping Creek Estate became cat...
A Shearer’s Gift: Sam Picker helps regional transplant recipients after losing a friend
Imagine being told you're eligible for a lifesaving transplant, but you've only got hours to get from your regional town to the hospital in Sydney for the operation. You pack the essentials and race out the door. However, between the whirlwind trip and getting through the surgery, it's unlikely you'll have time to prepare for the four-week recovery period when...
O’Brien family escaped Wallaroo house fire with no time to spare
Bernie O'Brien's wife, Yijun, was the first person to wake to a strange popping sound on Sunday, 6 June. A fire was burning in the office of their home on Gooromon Ponds Road in Wallaroo, on the NSW-ACT border, and there were eight people asleep inside. The next few minutes were a blur as Bernie's daughter and son-in-law, Vanessa and...
The search is on for Australia’s hardest working dog
Who owns Australia's hardest working dog? It's the question 2021 Cobber Challenge nominees are waiting to find an answer to and Daniel Pumpa from Koorawatha near Young, thinks he's in with a fair chance. He's nominated his five-year-old kelpie Sally for the annual challenge that sees how many kilometres Australia and New Zealand's working dogs clock up each day. Daniel estimates...
Braidwood couple relocates cattle lost (and then found) in major flood
Peter Bowie and Tracia Milton could only hope to find a handful of the 192 cattle they lost in the March 2021 flood in Mondrook, near Taree, on the NSW Mid North Coast. The cattle were worth $350,000 so imagine the couple's gratitude at finding 152 of them two months later. "We can't believe it," says Tracia. "We are so...
Visitor numbers double at Rocky Hill and Goulburn Waterworks during COVID-19
Regional tourism has experienced a welcome boost during COVID-19 border closures with two historic landmarks in Goulburn proving particularly popular and coming as quite a surprise to locals. The Rocky Hill War Memorial and Museum and the Goulburn Historic Waterworks are just two of the landmark locations in the region driving a significant increase in visitor numbers. READ ALSO: Lead contamination...
The balladeer from Yass: How Daniel Kelly challenges local issues through satirical lyricism
Arts & Culture
He has sung about Yass' brown, smelly water; the old Commercial Hotel, which has stood empty on the town's main street since 2005, and the controversial removal of the popular spiral slide from Coronation Park. If there's an issue or story to be told in his hometown of Yass, in regional NSW, Daniel Kelly will write a song about it....
Goulburn ag show named a 2021 Resilience Award finalist
Goulburn's agricultural show has been announced as a finalist along with Woodstock, Finley and Armidale, for the Agricultural Societies Council of NSW's 2021 Resilience Award. The award recognises shows that have demonstrated adaptability and hardiness during the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Goulburn Agricultural, Pastoral and Horticultural Society was one of the last shows to be held before the COVID-19 lockdown in 2020....
Coles workers react to news Goulburn distribution centre will close
At least 207 people will be without a job when Coles shuts its Goulburn distribution centre on 5 October this year. The date will mark three years since employees first heard of the closure. A distribution centre employee's wife, who wished to remain anonymous following a reminder from Coles not to talk to the media, said the wait had been stressful....
NSW Health cuts Eurobodalla hospital bed numbers, says Moruya doctor
Health & Wellbeing
A Moruya doctor says NSW Health has cut the number of beds intended for the new Eurobodalla Regional Hospital, which will replace Moruya District Hospital and Batemans Bay Hospital on the South Coast. Obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Michael Holland was involved in developing the new clinical services plan for the $200 million hospital at Moruya. The March 2020 plan endorsed 165...
Teen injured by whale wakes from coma in time to celebrate birthday
The 18-year-old man injured by a whale in a freak accident on the NSW South Coast has woken from an eight-day coma a week before his 19th birthday. Nick Myhill was placed into a coma to help his body recover from serious neck and head injuries after a whale landed on his small fishing boat. Nick was with his stepfather,...
How a company in Yass and the ANU are influencing space vehicle design
A space company in the regional NSW town of Yass has partnered with the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra to develop and trial a strong, lightweight and heat-resistant material they hope will eventually be used to build rockets and spacecraft. Cingulan Space and ANU's Training Centre for Automated Manufacture of Advanced Composites (AMAC) recently completed a research project using a...
Former Landmark building in Yass sells for $3.2 million
The former Landmark building at the entrance to Yass has sold for $3.2 million, however its buyer is anyone's guess. Agent Andrew Curlewis of Yass Valley Property confirmed the buyer was local but said they wished to remain anonymous. "I don't know what they're going to use it for, but they've got plans to make some changes to it and...
Dear Prime Minister, who is safeguarding Working Holiday visa holders from exploitation?
"A year of sun, sea and sand," I thought as the plane landed in Australia in 2013. I had finished my degree in the UK and been approved for a year-long Working Holiday visa in Australia the year after. Both things I considered a victory at 22, especially after saying yes to every shift at the local pub and sleeping...
Canadian firefighter moves to South Coast after assisting with bushfires
When Kevin Parkinson flew to Australia to assist with the Black Summer bushfires, he didn’t think he’d be calling the country home 12 months later. However, it didn’t take long for the Canadian firefighter to convince his wife and children to move to the NSW South Coast after showing them photos and sharing stories of how amazing the locals were...
Fishers win access to popular waterway near Tuross Head
A farmer will have 28 days to remove a fence blocking members of the public accessing a popular fishing, kayaking and camping spot south of Tuross Head on the NSW South Coast. On Tuesday, 8 June, Eurobodalla Shire Council agreed not to sell Coopers Island Road – which accesses the Tuross Lake system – and instead retain it as a public road....