Official opening of Bill Prest Bridge by Transport Minister Craig Wallace, joined by Mr Bill Prest and his family.
Official opening of Bill Prest Bridge by Transport Minister Craig Wallace, joined by Mr Bill Prest and his family. Chrissy Harris

Fitting tribute for an icon

FORMER state politician and Gladstone mayor Bill Prest has had a bridge named after him.

At an official ceremony yesterday to rename the Gladstone Port Access Road Bridge the Bill Prest Bridge, Mr Prest reflected on his time in Gladstone, from when he moved to the town in 1949.

He talked about when the then Queensland Premier Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen came to Gladstone to announce it was no longer a town, but a city.

Mr Prest was a delegate for the rail union, was an alderman and mayor of Gladstone, State Member for Port Curtis (1976 to 1992), a board member of Gladstone Harbour Board and a Queensland Rail employee.

Main Roads Minister Craig Wallace, Gladstone Ports Corporation chief executive officer Leo Zussino, Gladstone Regional Mayor George Creed and fellow councillors attended yesterday’s ceremony.

“Bill has been a valued member of the community for more than 40 years,” Cr Creed said.

“Bill was a passionate advocate for the region and its people.”

“The Bill Prest Bridge will ensure his hard work will be commemorated for years to come,” Mr Wallace said. “Bill has steered Gladstone through the growth years. He has worked long and hard in a number of roles.”

Mr Prest said since he retired, he has watched from his house on the hill as the development continued.



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