News

Family given no right to appeal as garden faces bulldozer

Felicity Chapman with her two sons Harry and Owen, 17 and 13.
Felicity Chapman with her two sons Harry and Owen, 17 and 13. James McGrath

ON February 10 Murray and Felicity Chapman received the news that their award-winning garden was set to be demolished by the Gladstone Regional Council, and they had no right to appeal the decision.

The Chapmans have been entangled in an ongoing dispute with their neighbor for five years about the garden blocking the neighbour's view.

While the garden sits outside their property line, it had approval from the Environmental Protection Agency.

"On previous occasions, the council has called us and given us the opportunity to have our say on the issue," Mrs Chapman said.

However, it has remained a prize-winning garden in those years, even taking out prizes in former Observer Garden Competitions.

This time, they say they have been given no warning no opportunity to come to a mutual agreement with the neighbor or even to have their right of reply on the complaints before the council made the threat to bulldoze the garden this Friday.

"When we called… we were told the decision was final and would not be changed," Mrs Chapman said.

However, the council has agreed to delay the bulldozing until it had finished an internal review into the matter, a review the Chapmans say they have had very limited input into.

We haven't had the same sort of attitude from the Gladstone Regional Council.

However, Mrs Chapman fears this review could be a rush job which could theoretically be finished before Friday.

The Chapmans are currently seeking a guarantee that there will be no bulldozing until they've been able to appeal to the Ombudsman and the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal, should it come to that.

It is believed after a visit of seven councilors to the garden last Wednesday, the Chapmans do have at least some of the councilors in their corner.

"The councilors came to see us, and we were so impressed with that. Straight away they were receptive and they came out to listen and try to understand our concerns," Mrs Chapman said.

"They gave us a fair hearing, and made us feel like we were part of the community. That has given us a great deal of hope.

"We haven't had the same sort of attitude from the Gladstone Regional Council."

In response to questions from The Observer, the council merely confirmed that the internal review was underway and did not guarantee a stay of bulldozing should the Chapmans seek further appeal of the decision.

What's growing in the garden?

  • Grass Trees
  • Banksias
  • Bottlebrushes
  • Wildflowers
  • Low-growing tea trees
The garden which is under threat.
The garden which is under threat. James McGrath

Topics:  garden gladstone regional council neighbourhood dispute tannum sands



How to survive a bushfire in your car

IT SOUNDS like a nightmare, but it can happen.

Eight reasons to join the RFS

SPREAD across 93% of Queensland, the Rural Fire Service has about 36,000 volunteers. And you could be one of them.

What if my insurer gives me grief?

CLAIMING your insurance cover after a natural disaster can go one of two ways. It can be a breeze, or like pulling teeth.

Rio Tinto throws in $6m for Glastone

HELPING HAND: Damian Morgan, Tina Zawila and Kylie Devine are part of the Here for Business program supported by the Rio Tinto Community Fund.

MINING GIANT throws in a whopping sum for Gladstone locals.

He 'snapped' when his pregnant partner refused sex

Domestic violence and assault is one are of law which the Murwillumbah Local Court deals with.

MAN threatened to kill himself in front of their kids.

Pay rise for Gladstone mayor, councillors

Mayor Matt Burnett.

GLADSTONE'S LEADERS will enjoy watching their pay rise soon.

Local Partners

Dakota Fanning rekindles romance with childhood sweetheart

Dakota Fanning rekindles romance with ex

Jennifer Lawrence apologises to the people of Hawaii

Jennifer Lawrence sorry for 'offensive' story

Cruz Beckham's single a 'one-off'

He is not planning to launch a full-time music career yet.

Louis Tomlinson's mother dies aged 42

Louis Tomlinson's mother has died.

Star Wars spin off gets green light grom Lucas

Riz Ahmed, Diego Luna, Felicity Jones, Jiang Wen and Donnie Yen star in the movie Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

Lucas said to have enjoyed the latest Star Wars spin-off

BOOK REVIEW: The Mask of Command

This narrative from Anicent Rome has it all

Essential to get new Maroochydore CBD fundamentals right

LOOKING AHEAD: The central business district at Maroochydore is planned to be the heart of the Sunshine Coast.

SunCentral reports good progress on 53ha Sunshine Coast city heart

'Crucial' farm land eyed by defence department

Lawson Geddes moving the Brangus cattle to higher ground - which is the land the Defence Department is interested taking for the Shoalwater Bay expansion.

"You can't have one without the other.”

Former Shark Show for sale for $1.3 million

Vic Hislop at the old Shark Show.

TALK about a jaws-dropping real estate opportunity.

There's a whole lot of luxury in this home

The Endeavour Foundation's latest prize home in Mountain Creek.

WHEN it comes to desirable homes, it's hard to go past a prize home.

Ipswich City Properties asset portfolio retains its value

Ipswich City Council Administration Building, South Street, Ipswich. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times

New website launched by Ipswich City Council

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!