Lithgow NSW

Woolworths – 224 Mort Street, Lithgow NSW 2790

Overall: Basic. Nappy change only. Loads of room.

Good Points: Big easy to open door, which is lockable from the inside. Combined with disabled toilet. Wall mounted fold out baby change table. Low set sink with soap and paper towels.

Bad Points: No where for parents to sit down and feed their baby. No food prep facilities like a microwave or bottle warmer. Very cold in winter. Not terribly clean, although the floor had just been mopped moments before the photos were taken. 

Thanks to my dear Father In Law for taking these photos for me. I had no idea the Woolies complex at Lithgow had a disabled toilet, let alone a baby change table. Wonder if the mums in the area know about it too?
Anyway, the baby change table is inside the disabled bathroom. The door is wide enough for a double pram, which is hard to find in anything other than an auto-slide doorway. It also locks from the inside, which is a huge plus. 
Inside there’s loads of room. It’s not overly clean, but the floors had only just been mopped and it looked like the rest of the room was undergoing the daily overhaul. Maybe my FIL got there right at the end of the high traffic period. Anyway, I’m just excited to find another baby change facility in Lithgow! This is the closest one you’ll find to Main Street.
In addition to the wall mounted, fold out baby change table, there’s a disabled toilet with assistance rails. These come in handy for little ones learning to use the toilet. The sink is low enough for little ones to reach. There’s soap and paper towel too. Much prefer paper towel to a hand dryer any day.

So my call out to the mums and dads in Lithgow, let me know if you knew about this Parent Room! We’ll have to spread the word about it.

Lithgow NSW

No place to change a nappy in Main Street, Lithgow

We spend a bit of time in the mountains and beyond. It’s so nice to get away from Sydney, where the air is cleaner and life just feels a bit more relaxed. I love shopping in the different towns along the highway, but since having my little one it’s become a bit of a challenge to find good parent room or baby change facilities along the way.

Quite often we end up at Lithgow, which has a few fabulous stores in Main Street. I’d heard from a couple of friends and business people in the area, that there’s no parent room or baby change facility anywhere in the vicinity of Main Street. This sounded so silly, I had to check it out. Unfortunately, I discovered they were right.

On the corner of Main & Eskbank Street, just outside the ANZ Bank, there’s a street sign saying ‘Parent Room’ and pointing down Eskbank Street. ‘So there is one!’ I thought, wondering why people had said there wasn’t. With camera ready to take some pictures and let the world know I had discovered the missing room, a small white sign on the locked door grabbed my attention. It said the keys to the room were at the train station. This means if you’re in Main Street, Lithgow, and need to change your baby or feed them in private, you need to walk to the train station and ask for the keys to the parent room. Once you have the keys, you then have to walk all the way back up Main Street then Eskbank to get to the parent room. Could you imagine doing this? Could anyone imagine doing this? What a joke!!
People I had spoken to were right!! And they’re totally justified in being thoroughly upset about this.

For a place that’s working hard to attract and keep visitors and new residents, wouldn’t it be reasonable to expect to find an open parent room during the day? One that you don’t have to get keys for every time you need to use it? How silly!
It’s no wonder some of the businesses in the Main Street suffer from a lack of trade. Especially when Lithgow Plaza and the newer Woolworths both have baby change facilities. The Plaza actually has a parent room! What’s the incentive to go out with your young children to Main Street if there aren’t any facilities to look after and care for them?

One month this year, 18 babies had been born in Lithgow. Surely the parents of these children would like a parent room in the main street of town. Instead they’re probably forced to change and feed their children in the back seat of cars, in prams, or even in stores. This isn’t fair to anyone. Not to babies, parents or business owners. While shopping in one of my favourite stores, a dad came in with his young daughter and asked if there was a bathroom she could use. The lovely store owner said they had one at the back and showed them where it was. The store owner did not have to do that, but they did. However, it’s not the responsibility of local business owners to provide toilet and baby care facilities for the public. Surely that responsibility should fall into the hands of the local council.

So this leads me to wonder what it will take for the local council to open the parent room on Eskbank Street? Especially during chilly winter months, parents of babies and young children should not be expected to walk down to the train station to collect keys, then back to Eskbank street, then back to the station again to return the keys. It’s ridiculous and completely unreasonable. The facilities at the Plaza and Woolworths aren’t fabulous, but at least there’s something onsite that’s open for parents to use.

Lithgow NSW

Secret Creek Cafe & Restaurant – 35 Crane Rd Lithgow NSW 2790

Reviewed by B

Overall: OK. Nappy change facilities, high chairs. Not well equipped to cater to needs of children.

Good Points: Gorgeous rural setting. Wildlife enclosure outside featuring emus, kangaroos etc. Nice hard wood high chairs. Big nappy change unit.

Bad Points: No kids menu. High chairs are not padded at all. Nothing provided to help little people enjoy the visit, apart from the animals outside.

Secret Creek is definitely one of the nicest places to eat in Lithgow. It’s a little way out from town centre, in a gorgeous bush setting. Nice and quiet. Good food, BYO alcohol, and friendly staff. For big people it’s great, but for little people….be prepared and BYO entertainment (and food too).

We’ve been to Secret Creek a couple of times now with the little one. This time round, bubs is now 2 and is not content sitting in a chair for an hour or so while the adults eat and chat. Bubs has been when much littler, and the facilities have not changed at all. 
As a restaurant, it’s lovely. Good food, reasonable prices, BYO alcohol, lovely building and interior. But for catering to young ones, it really doesn’t work well at all.
First there is the high chair. It looks really nice and well made, but it’s all hardwood without a single bit of padding. And little people need a bit of padding, especially when they’re going to be sitting for a while. On the earlier visit, bub’s head would hit the back of the chair when leaning back…..not comfortable at all. Being much bigger now, the problem is the chair doesn’t adjust at all. The height of the chair, the table part….none of it can be altered to suit your child. On this visit, we ended up bringing over another regular chair and letting her sit on that instead. 
Second is the menu. There isn’t a kids menu. We were happy enough to share our orders with bub, but it’s nice to be able to give little people their own plate of food…..or even let them choose something from their own little menu. But not here. Thankfully, bub was happy with sharing what we’d ordered (and so were we). 
Going forward, I’ll bring some food from home to give bub.
Third is the lag time between ordering and getting food. The wait wasn’t too long, but long enough to have me begin to feel anxious about how much longer bub was going to last before getting over the whole day. Definitely remember to take a variety of entertainment for your little one. We brought a colouring book, reading book and a couple of My Little Pony’s……..and of course there was the animal enclosure outside (but being mid winter, staying outside is not a pleasant option). Next time we decide to go there and take bub with us, we’ll order ahead so food will be ready when we arrive. 
Fourth, the baby change facilities. The baby change unit is in the disabled bathroom. All restrooms are located down the small hall between the front desk and the serving bar. Head through the big Restroom door, and to your left is another door with a big sign on the front of it with a wheelchair sticker, and another sticker underneath saying ‘Baby Changing Area’.
Don’t take the pram in, if you can help it. There’s really not enough room for the pram once you have folded out the change unit. 
The door does not close or lock properly.
The change unit is wall mounted and is a great big size. The best bit about it is the thick padded surface. Love it! And there are little compartments in the unit to put nappies, wipes etc in while you are changing bubby. This is a great idea, and there should be loads more units with this feature. Would save parents from having to stick nappies etc between their teeth, legs etc, while trying to change little ones and keep them from wriggling away.
One downside to the change unit is the tough clip at the top. I don’t like it. I needed two hands to undo the thing and be able to fold it out – not so great if you have a baby. Toddlers are capable of standing on their own so you can do this, but with babies….this is not such a great feature. This is where other wall mounted units win out – they’re light weight and easy to open up.
Secret Creek really is a lovely place to eat. But just make sure you really do plan ahead if your bringing your little one with you. Apart from highchairs and a change table, that’s about all there is for kids (except for the animals. Kangaroos and emus really are fun to look at, especially through the eyes of little ones). So bring toys, books etc to keep them entertained, and bring food too.