Here is your Friday Top Five, with editor Andrew Korner
IT HAS been a week again dominated by COVID-19 headlines, not least because of the extremely concerning developments down in Victoria.
Up here in Ipswich, where our region has been fortunate to remain free of the dreaded virus for so long, we made headlines of our own following news two people had tested positive following known contact with active cases.
Hundreds of people did the right thing and subjected themselves to testing, with long queues at Springfield as health authorities scrambled to open a pop-up testing station outside Orion Shopping Centre.
So far, thankfully, it seems as though we have not seen a sudden outbreak, but there were some anxious moments.
There was a scare midway through this week when it appeared as though a local woman had tested positive for coronavirus, with no known link to the case. It seemed we had dodged a bullet when it turned out the result was a false positive, as later proven in subsequent testing.
Despite this welcome news, it still feels like it is too early to relax, given what is happening across Victoria.
Owners of a Springfield Lakes restaurant claimed they had no warning that the hotel they operate from was to be used to house people in coronavirus quarantine. The restaurant was forced to shut as a result and the owners were left fuming. We will continue to follow this story as it develops.
With all that is going on it certainly seems like we are in the midst of some kind of major transition. There are changes of a much more obvious kind going on in our CBD and Ipswich City Council was keen as mustard to promote the progress being made. The aerial view of our new-look CBD is encouraging and I cannot wait to see how it looks in a few months' time. Perhaps it will finally give us something to be proud of that poor old part of town.
Currey is a well known name across Ipswich and it was great to catch up with them this week to see how the florist business has been going since COVID-19 cam along and changed everything. Proving our current situation is a double-edged sword, the restrictions on visits to hospitals and nursing homes has resulted in more people sending flowers to loved ones, and an increase in business for Curreys during April.
Despite being postponed by several months, organisers of the year's biggest drag racing event remained hopeful of putting on a show this year. Those hopes were dashed when cases in the southern states started going through the roof, and borders were shut. The loss of the event is not only disappointing for drag racing fans, but will also take a significant chunk out of the Ipswich economy.