This week's top 5 stories across Ipswich.
This week's top 5 stories across Ipswich.

Here are the Top 5 stories from Ipswich this week

WHILE many of us are still in holiday mode, there has been plenty of news happening across Ipswich this week, as the dust settles on 2020 and we tentatively lift our heads to face 2021.

We may not be out of the COVID funk yet, but at least we can say at this point in time that there appears to have been no link with the new strain of coronavirus into the West Moreton Region.

A level of concern has been raised over how the new strain infiltrated the Brisbane region in the first place, and I’m sure the health authorities will be kept on their toes over the coming weeks.

Here is hoping those restrictions only last until next Friday.

Of course, there has been plenty to report on other than the dreaded coronavirus, so here’s a look at some of our biggest local stories this week.

1. Ipswich’s oldest resident reaches 109 not out

Ebbw Vale resident Elizabeth Jordan turns 109 on January 15.
Ebbw Vale resident Elizabeth Jordan turns 109 on January 15.

It truly is a marvellous achievement for a truly tough cookie in Elizabeth Jordan.

We first started running into Elizabeth at the Ipswich Show years ago and were surprised at how sprightly she was back then.

It is testament to her character that after 109 years, she can still have a chuckle.

Interesting that Elizabeth mentions she has never had a drink. Perhaps there’s something in that.

Then again, I think some people are just born durable and Elizabeth is without doubt one of those.

2. Transit Centre’s tale of woe

It has been a hot topic for us with the recent 10-year anniversary of the 2011 floods.

The poor old Ipswich Transit Centre has been a blight on the CBD since that natural disaster gutted it.

An arts group briefly used the building just after the flood clean-up but was forced out by squatters.

The Ipswich Transit Centre is a shell of its former self.
The Ipswich Transit Centre is a shell of its former self.

The real shame is that it has taken a decade and counting for anyone to step in and take some meaningful action.

We are told the cost of demolition is hard to justify, while nobody really wants to set up shop there because of how easily the place goes under in floods. That is easy to understand.

I think it has got to the point where the people of Ipswich don’t really mind what goes there any more, just do something with it.

3. Ipswich turns to recycling

Fraser Wilson recycles at Tomra in West Ipswich.
Fraser Wilson recycles at Tomra in West Ipswich.

The controversy that surrounded Ipswich’s recycling shut down a few years ago has led to residents cashing in on bottles and cans to the tune of $15 million.

This week we reported on the public’s phenomenal response to the Containters for Change scheme.

More than 150 million containers have been returned in Ipswich through the scheme in a little over two years.

The city’s participation is growing, with 59 million containers returned in Ipswich in 2019, followed by 85 million last year.

Ipswich City Council is still reviewing its policy on glass recycling, and a key aspect of the review will be the possible reintroduction of glass back into the yellow top bins.

4. Homeless haven plans for pub

Goodna Street Life vice president Steve Purcell at the Weeroona Hotel in Goodna, which has been transformed into Helen's Haven to house homeless people.
Goodna Street Life vice president Steve Purcell at the Weeroona Hotel in Goodna, which has been transformed into Helen's Haven to house homeless people.

Speaking of flood transformations, one of those we have spoken about extensively of recent times as been the Weeroona Pub at Goodna.

After the 2001 floods, a charity group called Helen’s Haven took up the lease, spending $180,000 on refurbishments to turn into a homeless shelter.

This week’s recap on the charity revealed it hasn’t been all smooth sailing, with vice-president Steve Purcell revealing donations from another charity were the only thing that prevented his organisation from going under.

There is a lot of work left to do, as Helen’s Haven continues its noble efforts to help the less fortunate among us.

5. Bittersweet update as dying man’s wish is granted

Brandon Sanewski and his wife-to-be Erin Broderick will tie the knot at a bedside wedding ceremony in the Ipswich Hospital Palliative Care Unit.
Brandon Sanewski and his wife-to-be Erin Broderick will tie the knot at a bedside wedding ceremony in the Ipswich Hospital Palliative Care Unit.

Ipswich man Brendan Sanewski and his loved ones recently received the heart breaking news that there was nothing else doctors could do to save him from cystic fibrosis.

Mr Sanewski, who had a double lung transplant 10 years ago, recently discovered his body had started to reject the donor organs.

He has entered palliative care and doesn’t have long to live, but he hopes to make the most of that time.

A day after our first story was published, news came through that Ipswich residents had got together to help Mr Sanewski marry the love of his life, Erin Broderick.

It is a story that is both tragic and touching, but we were certainly glad to hear of the public’s heartwarming response.



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