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Beyond the Bale : September 2011
September 2011 BEYOND THE BALE 24 ON-FARM The Deepwater woolshed on 'The Bulls Run' property near Wagga Wagga, NSW received plenty of praise at the 2005 Australian Institute of Architects awards. It was described by the awards jury as a building that "transforms the shearing shed into a new Australian icon" and "demonstrates a contemporary concern for human and animal comfort". Six years later, how is the woolshed faring? "It's going very well," says The Bulls Run manager Russell Pumpa. "The main purpose of the shed is to provide an efficient and safe workplace, and it ticks both those boxes. "The shearers are happy to keep coming back. They love the way the shed has been designed to reduce the extreme temperatures that we can get during summer, when outside it can often reach about 40°C. "There's a natural flow of air across the board, from vents on the side of the building and from the shaded area FAST FACTS l The Deepwater woolshed on 'The Bulls Run' property is a well designed, state-of-the-art shed. l It has features that keep it relatively cool for the workers and sheep during hot weather. l The shed provides a productive and safe environment for shearers and wool handlers. beneath the shed. Reticulation enables the roof to be sprayed with water to aid cooling, and water can also be drizzled down screens hanging from some of the eaves to help provide a cool air flow." The shed is designed for six shearers, and it can accommodate a left-hander. A special lowered ceiling over the shearers and their sheep provides them with even lighting without any glare. All the walls and the roof of the shed are made from steel with a minimal use of columns. Sheep pens and chutes are designed to aid handling, and a raised board helps the wool handlers retrieve the fleece after shearing. "We also provide the shearers and wool handlers with decent showers and amenities, a cooking area for their lunch, and an outside shaded deck for smokos," says Russell. Outside, there is a good use of shade. The roof of the shed overhangs by five metres providing shade for all the walls. The shed itself provides undercover holding areas for 800 sheep, and the race and work area in the yards are under cover. Existing trees around the yards also provide shade. The yards themselves have also been designed to help with handling and provide an efficient flow of sheep. When the yards were first built, the brightness of the new concrete sometimes used to make the sheep baulk, but dirt and ageing has now reduced the glare. The Bulls Run property is now owned by Paraway Pastoral Co. and Russell says they're very happy with the shed. "It's performing nicely," Russell says. "It's well designed and constructed, enabling the shearers and wool handlers to work in an efficient and relatively comfortable environment. The only thing we've changed is to move the generator a bit further away to reduce the noise and any fumes. "Paraway is building a new shed at their 'Steam Plains' property in the Riverina at the moment, and while it's not the same design as Deepwater, it embodies many of its principles of an efficient and safe working environment." More information: AWI has produced Shearing Shed Guidelines that are available on the AWI website at: www.wool.com/Harvest Woolshed keeps it cool The design of the Deepwater woolshed at The Bulls Run near Wagga Wagga, NSW helps it stay relatively cool during the heat of summer. PHOTOS: MICHAEL NICHOLSON AWI's On-Farm team is aiming to help woolgrowers make improvements in their shearing sheds. We are currently seeking proposals for projects in relation to OH&S improvement of bale handling and other aspects of shearing shed design. If you are interested in submitting a proposal, please contact the AWI Project Management Office on (02) 8295 3100 or email@example.com.