POSTCODE DRAMA: Insurance major issue, resident group says
POSTCODES seem to be a topic of great discussion in the Ipswich community right now and Willowbank stalwart George Hatchman has raised a couple of issues out his way.
The QT has covered the battle of residents at Karalee and Karana Downs to have their postcode of 4306 changed for a variety of reasons.
Australia Post has sent officials to meet with concerned residents and the signs are positive that a resolution will be found.
Mr Hatchman, the president of the Willowbank Area Residents Group (WAG), said he had read in the QT about the 4306 issue and wanted to make some points of his own.
"What I want to point out to you is that Amberley and Willowbank is in 4306 and not affiliated with 4305 where we think we should be," he said.
"We actually took that task to the postcode people and they said it was nothing to do with regions, it was do with their mail distribution.
"The (RAAF) Air Force Base has now expanded its barriers and that took the Amberley community post office, which is 4306, within the perimeter of the base.
"It is not available to the public anymore. It is more of a military post office.
"We were assigned an Ipswich West post office at Leichhardt, which is 4305, as our community post office.
"My argument is: Why are we 4306 when our community post office is 4305?
"When you go in to Myers or one of the shops in town and want to buy a bit of furniture, they look up your postcode and see 4306 and instead of $15 it is $45 (for delivery).
"There are insurance issues. The same thing you had in the paper about Karalee affects us out here, too, and yet we are supposed to be part of Ipswich - 4306 goes all the way up to Blackbutt."
Mr Hatchman, formerly in the air force, said the post office at Amberley was once available to the "civil community of Amberley" before 2013.
"But the extension of the base extended the fence line which took in the post office," he said.
"The base is a secure area and civies aren't allowed on the base.
"So people at Willowbank have been told that their postal service is now available at Leichhardt, the other side of the base, so you've got to drive all the way around through Yamanto and over the One Mile bridge back to Leichhardt which is about 15km.
"I am ex-military and have a post office box at Amberley so I have been given the privilege of a community pass to go in and use the post office, but the average civilian can't do that.
"We organised the local chemist here to receive parcels so people didn't have to go to a post office to pick up their parcels, but he is doing that on a community basis and doesn't get any money for it."
The QT asked Mr Hatchman what he would like to see happen.
"I would like to see a post office located in Yamanto that could service us all," he said.
"We progressed that three years ago but it came to a dead end."