Commemorating Sir Charles Kingsford Smith On ANZAC Day: Honouring Aviation And Military Legacies

Kingsford Smith Drive in Hamilton is one of the busiest roads in Brisbane, connecting Pinkenba to the Central Business District. Have you ever wondered about the man behind the name?

Its significance is more than just a way to get from one place to another. However, amid the continuous flow of traffic and the urban landscape, one might easily overlook the profound historical figure for whom this main road is named: Sir Charles Kingsford Smith.

Life Of Sir Charles Kingsford Smith:

Sir Charles Kingsford Smith and Charles Ulm
Photo Credit: Website/ National Library of Australia

Sir Charles Kingsford Smith was a pioneering pilot who left an indelible mark on the history of flying in Australia. He was born on February 9, 1897, at Riverview Terrace in Hamilton. He became interested in flying while serving in the Royal Flying Corps as a pilot in World War I. His wartime experiences prepared him for his work after the war, which propelled him to the top of the aircraft field. 

Aviation Milestones:

Photo Credit: Website/ National Library of Australia

In 1928, Kingsford Smith made aviation history when he flew from the United States to Australia, crossing the Pacific Ocean for the first time. This achievement not only solidified his status as a pioneering pilot, but it also showed how important air travel is becoming for connecting people around the world. 

During his long and successful career, Kingsford Smith also made many record-breaking flights, establishing his standing as an aviation legend. In 1933, he made history by being the first person to fly alone across the Tasman Sea, adding to his reputation as a brave pilot.

Legacy And Recognition:

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons CC0 1.0

The decision to name Kingsford Smith Drive after this distinguished figure serves as a fitting tribute to his enduring contributions to Australian aviation. Beyond a mere commemoration, it shows that his influence on Brisbane’s aviation history is recognised and highlights the city’s deep link to the sky.

Kingsford Smith’s legacy goes beyond his accomplishments in aviation; his adventures show the spirit of adventure, persistence, and innovation that continues to inspire Australians today. His risky flights not only pushed the limits of what technology could do, but they also caught the imaginations of people all over the world and made them feel awe and wonder.

As people drive along the hustle and bustle of Kingsford Smith Drive, they are reminded not only of a road but also of the brave pilot whose name is on it. It serves as a poignant reminder of Brisbane’s rich aviation heritage and the enduring legacy of Sir Charles Kingsford Smith, whose pioneering spirit continues to soar through the skies of history.

Published Date 10-April-2024

Hamilton Residents Alerted as Thieves Target Multi-Residential Carparks

Hamilton has emerged as a focal point for thieves targeting car parks in multi-residential complexes, with a series of thefts raising concerns among local authorities and community members. The thefts, which have seen property stolen from storage cages and vehicles, highlight an urgent need for increased vigilance and security measures in the area.

Series of Thefts in Hamilton

A recent incident saw thieves gaining entry into the car park of a unit complex on Harbour Road, Hamilton, where tools and clothing were stolen from a vehicle. This event, occurring overnight on Friday, March 29, 2024, is part of a disturbing trend affecting the Hamilton area, prompting police to urge residents and property managers to adopt enhanced security protocols.

Hamilton crime clusters
Photo Credit: QPS

Between January 8 and April 7, 2024, Hamilton has experienced a worrying total of 203 offences. This includes 36 unlawful entries and 71 other theft cases involving taking property without force, threat, or illegal entry. These statistics underscore the pressing issue of property crime in the Hamilton community.

Hamilton crime clusters unlawful entry
Unlawful entry clusters
Photo Credit: QPS
Hamilton crime clusters other theft
Other theft clusters
Photo Credit: QPS

Advice for Protecting Property

In response to the rising tide of thefts, authorities advise residents to bolster their security practices. Recommendations include maintaining strict personal security habits, ensuring prompt communication with property management, and is well-acquainted with building evacuation and safety plans.

Additionally, enhancing physical security measures, such as installing high-quality locks and ensuring valuables are not stored in easily accessible areas, is crucial.

Residents are also encouraged to take proactive steps in securing vehicles and bicycles, including the use of anti-theft screws for registration plates and the strategic positioning of bikes in locked areas or using additional security devices.

How to Report Suspicious Activity

Hamilton residents who observe suspicious behaviour or have information about the thefts are urged to contact Policelink by submitting details via the online suspicious activity form at or by calling 131 444. Crime Stoppers is available at 1800 333 000 or online at for anonymous crime reporting.

Published 8-April-2024

Dispute Erupts in Hamilton Hill Over Trophy Home Renovation

A significant dispute has erupted over a Hamilton Hill homeowner’s plans to modify their lavish trophy home’s glass balustrades, sparking fears among neighbours that these changes will render the residence overly imposing in an exclusive enclave.

At the centre of the controversy is a multimillion-dollar trophy home on Eldernell Terrace, where proposed alterations have led to objections from nearby residents. The issue arose over the homeowner’s plans to increase the structure’s size and replace certain architectural features, raising concerns about the building’s height and aesthetic impact on the area.

The contested property’s owners, Michael John Cleary and his wife Mary Jo, acquired the home for $7.3 million in 2023. Their renovation plans include removing some glass panels for fibre-cement sheeting, altering the glass balustrading to steel, and adding steel-framed awnings. 

Hamilton Hill
Photo Credit: Melanie Wing/ DA 10630479

These modifications, documented in council submissions, have sparked the current controversy due to concerns about the building’s increased bulk and visual dominance in the neighbourhood.

Two residents of Hamilton Hill, concerned about the potential effects of the proposed changes, have taken formal steps to halt the development.

Liza Gay and her husband Geoff, prominent figures in event management and the audiovisual sector, submitted an objection to the local council via DA 10630479, approved on 26th March 2024. 

​​ They argue that the alterations would significantly increase the building’s height beyond the acceptable limit of 9.5 meters, urging the council to issue a “stop work order” until the application undergoes due process.

“ As part of the original Development Application the Brisbane City Council sought changes to ensure glass balustrade was provided on balconies to reduce the overall height, bulk and scale of proposed development,” the couple stated it their submission.

“The current owner has totally ignored that ruling and has removed the balustrade to replace it with higher and opaque materials.

“As this work is in total contradiction to the Councils direction and does not align with the intent of the overarching purpose of the Zone code, we request the you place a ‘Stop work order’ on the property until the application goes through due process.”

Hamilton Hill
Photo Credit: DA 10630479

Adding to the Gays’ opposition, another neighbour, Melanie Wing, who co-owns a popular bar with her husband, has voiced her concerns. Wing, residing in a historical house nearby, criticises the development for potentially setting a worrisome precedent regarding building height in the area. She emphasises that the proposed changes would result in a building that is too large and imposing, negatively affecting the surrounding residential zone.

As the council considers the objections, the community awaits a decision that will not only affect the immediate neighbours but also set a tone for future developments in one of Brisbane’s most prestigious locales.

Published 28-March-2024

Proposed Hamilton Hill Home Revamp to Exceed Typical Height Restrictions

A stately 1950s brick residence perched atop Hamilton Hill with vistas of the winding Brisbane River could make way for a luxurious new home pushing architectural boundaries.

Read: Developer Looks to Demolish 1940s Hamilton Abode

The existing three-storey house at 15 Quarry Street sits in one of Brisbane’s most exclusive enclaves, but its owners have applied to demolish it and erect a dazzling modern rebuild in its place. 

Plans filed with the Brisbane City Council detail a design-forward dwelling oriented to capitalise on million-dollar river views through walls of glass and sprawling terraces.

Hamilton Hill
The existing house at Quarry St (Photo credit:

“The application seeks to demolish an existing post-1946 dwelling house and introduce a new dwelling to the premises. It is noted that the current dwelling is a post 1946 dwelling and therefore will not be subject to the requirements of the Traditional Building Character (Demolition Code),” planners stated in the application.

Hamilton Hill
Photo credit:

The proposed rebuild, designed by LVO Architecture, would soar over 9.5 metres in parts, exceeding the area’s height limits, though the couple’s consultants argue the design meets council requirements by terracing the floors to avoid exceeding three storeys at any point. 

Photo credit: LVO Architecture 

Whilst constrained by the existing property’s irregular shape, the architectural plans skillfully incorporate nine parking spaces, a new driveway entrance off Quarry Street, and retention of an existing rear access easement. Some side setbacks would be tighter than typically permitted.

Photo credit: LVO Architecture 
Photo credit: LVO Architecture 

The design team touts the use of “high quality” materials and that the home is “befitting of its setting” crowning Hamilton Hill. The council application argues the proposed residence meets key performance criteria despite the minor height breaches.

Behind this ambitious vision are owners Eric and Paula Steed, the couple who own multiple jewellery stores across Australia. 

Read: Prized Hamilton Home Faces Partial Demolition to Kick Off Next Chapter

When not overseeing their retail empire, the Steeds split time between a $5.5 million riverfront apartment in Kangaroo Point offering “jaw-dropping” city views and their dated Hamilton Hill property they now aim to replace.

Hamilton to Stradbroke Ferry Service Forced to Close Amid Fee Dispute

A small business operating a fast ferry service from Hamilton to North Stradbroke Island has been forced to close just days after launching, with operators claiming exorbitant fees sank its operations.

River to Bay operates ferries from Brisbane River to the small seaside township of Dunwich with 30-minute and one-hour trips. However, the business shut down after  Redland City Council charged them a massive fee for using a public jetty on the island.

The company had already obtained a licence for $1,000 but claimed it was later told the fee would increase to $78,000 if it used the jetty more than 50 times a year, essentially killing its business, according to the operators. 

River to Bay operations manager Isla Toomey said they have asked Council to reassess the “exorbitant” fees.

The council has approved a schedule of fees that applies to all commercial operators using council-owned or managed jetties for business. The fees help maintain the jetty. The Council also said it was working with the operator and the State Government to find a solution.

Stradbroke Flyer owner John Groom, who runs ferries to the island from Cleveland’s Toondah Harbour, said all ferry operators in Redland were feeling the pinch from these fees. Straddie Chamber of Commerce president Colin Battersby called for the Council to simplify the boat and ferry licensing deals and level the playing field because this was not the first complaint.

In 2022, Mark Bailey, the former Transport Minister, criticised the Redland barge landing charges, which had increased from $72,000 to $136,000 for 2022-23. The charges were projected to increase further to $346,000 by 2025. Mayor Karen Williams justified the increases by stating that it was necessary to prevent ratepayers from subsidizing commercial ferry operators.

Published 14-March-2023

Outdoor Movie Magic in Hamilton! Sunset Cinema Returns to the Northshore Precinct

Did you know that the Sunset Cinema will return to the Northshore Precinct in Hamilton and will run for eight glorious weeks, screening its signature mix of new releases, family faves, and all-time classics?

Catch new season blockbusters like the new “Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire” and the highly anticipated “Dune: Part 2.” And don’t miss the new spy thriller “Argylle” and the Marvel action “Madame Web.”

From the 21st of March to the 11th of May 2024,  Sunset Cinema will be screening from a slightly new location in The Collective Event Space, Dock D, Northshore (next to Eat Street).

Northshore Precinct
Photo Credit: Sunset Cinema

Double Features and Family Fun

Check out the bunch of double features and get two movies for the price of one! Keep the kids entertained with the Disney duo “Finding Nemo” and “Toy Story.” Plan the perfect girls’ night with comedies “Mean Girls and “Clueless,” then prepare for a scare at teen horrors “Buffy The Vampire Slayer” and “Jennifer’s Body.” Treat the family to a memorable night out at the new animated adventure “Kung Fu Panda 4” and the magical world of “Wonka.”

Musical and More

Sing along to the musical masterpiece “One Love,” a celebration of Bob Marley’s life and music. Plus loads more new releases, including the Amy Winehouse biographical drama “Back to Black.”

VIP Treatment and Snacks

Soak up the alfresco atmosphere from the comfort of a bean bag or get the VIP treatment in the Sunset Lounge and enjoy premium bean lounges in a reserved area with prime viewing, plus bottomless popcorn! Don’t forget to make a stop at the fully licensed snack bar for a pre-movie bevvy including a selection of sustainable Aussie wines from Oxford Landing, G&T’s from Manly Spirits Distillery Co. and refreshing craft brews from Mountain Culture Beer Co. 

Be sure to grab all your movie night snacking essentials too, like Murray Street Choc Tops and freshly popped popcorn before settling in for the show.

Get a totally immersive audio experience with every ticket holder receiving brand-new Bluetooth headphones, for the ultimate movie night under the stars!

Family-Friendly Environment

Best of all your furry pals are welcome too! For everyone’s enjoyment owners are kindly asked to keep dogs on a lead within the event site for the duration of the movie.

Dates and Timing

Gates open at 5.30 pm and the film will commence at the last light. The movie program is now on sale, so head to the website for your tickets for this must-do event.

Published 8-March-2024

Retailers Offered Up to $500K Grants to Open at Portside Wharf in Hamilton

Grants and incentives of up to $500,000 are being offered to retailers looking to establish new stores and restaurants at Portside Wharf in Hamilton.

Read: Brookfield Proposes Innovative Built-to-Rent Development at Portside Wharf, Hamilton 

The incentives are part of a $20 million program by Brookfield Properties to revitalise the mixed-use riverfront precinct ahead of the 2032 Brisbane Summer Olympics.

Up to 23 packages, ranging from $50,000 to $500,000, will be available to assist retailers with costs associated with opening new stores. This includes help with fit-out and design expenses, marketing support, and other startup costs. The aim is to curate a mix of retailers that align with the vision for the waterfront village.

Portside Wharf in Hamilton
Rise Bakery at Portside Wharf (Photo supplied)

“We want to work with like-minded operators who will become an integral part of Hamilton and Brisbane at large,” said Brookfield Properties Executive Vice President Lee Butterworth. 

With thousands of residents and workers in the area, along with a surge expected as the Olympics approach, Butterworth said the incentives will bring new energy to the village.

“This is our way of ensuring we bring the right partners to Portside and inject new energy into our village by the water. We’ll be making opportunities available for established businesses, emerging businesses and entrepreneurs,” said Mr Butterworth.

Retailers focused on health, wellness, waterfront dining, boutiques, and convenience are invited to apply. 

The revitalisation of Portside Wharf kicked off in 2023 with the addition of several new dining establishments. Fine dining seafood restaurant Fosh, led by renowned Brisbane restaurateur Michael Tassis, opened to offer upscale waterfront fare. 

Portside Wharf in Hamilton
Fosh (Photo supplied)

French bakery and tea salon Rise Bakery brought Parisian breads and pastries to the village. Yakitori bar Bird’s Nest opened for Japanese skewers and shared plates. Artisanal gelato purveyor Rosé Gelateria also launched to provide frozen Italian treats.

The latest addition is Portside Social, a new 224 sqm venue modelled after the popular Newstead Social. Other upcoming openings include sushi restaurant Choo Choo Sushi and Chinese eatery Uncle Wang.

Portside Social (Photo supplied)

Interested retailers can apply for the incentives before April 19 at With the revitalisation underway, Portside Wharf aims to become a thriving retail and dining destination along Brisbane’s waterfront.

Read: Rosé Gelateria Debuts at Portside Wharf

Published 23-February-2024

Students in Hamilton and Other Suburbs Experiencing Health and Well-being Issues From Chronic and Excessive Aircraft Noise

A recent health report has found that students attending schools in Hamilton, Ascot, New Farm, Bulimba, Balmoral, Hawthorne, and Hendra that are affected by chronic and excessive aircraft noise are experiencing negative academic results and struggling with their psychological well-being.

The World Health Organization recommends that daytime aircraft noise should not go beyond 45 decibels, and at night, it should stay below 40 decibels.

However, in Brisbane’s neighbourhoods like Bulimba, Hamilton, New Farm, and Tingalpa, the noise from planes often goes way above these levels, reaching 70-85 decibels.

Some areas have as many as 89 to 100 flights per day, with most of them being louder than 70 decibels, and some even louder than 90 decibels, as recorded by Airservices Australia’s noise monitors.

The health report, published by environmental scientist Dr Sean Foley in August 2023, sheds light on a pressing issue, its potential repercussions, and the divergent viewpoints regarding the proposed solutions.

Based on local surveys from 2021 and 2022, the study has identified a staggering 1.39 million Brisbane residents, equating to 54 per cent of the population, contended with aircraft noise in 2023. Among them, 242,000 individuals, or 9 per cent, bear the brunt of severe affliction.

Health Implications

The consequences of chronic exposure to aircraft noise extend beyond mere inconvenience. The report underscores a disconcerting array of health risks that affect the residents, ranging from sleep disturbance to cardiovascular disease. It highlights the disturbing link between aircraft noise and mental health disorders such as depression and anxiety.

The report also reveals the adverse impacts on children’s learning outcomes, with research showing that students attending schools under flight paths, including those in Bulimba, Balmoral, Hawthorne, Hamilton, Hendra, Ascot, and New Farm, are now experiencing negative academic results and struggling with their psychological well-being. The issue doesn’t stop at the school gate; it follows them home, compounding the challenges faced by these young residents.

The research estimates the health and social costs amounting to $9,000 per person, based on insights gleaned from a parallel study at Brussels Airport in Belgium. Potentially, the study says residents will face a potential healthcare cost of $18.9 billion by 2032.

Photo Credit: Unsplash

Proposed Solutions

In light of these findings, the Brisbane Flight Path Community Alliance (BFPCA) has called for the implementation of a curfew and flight cap at Brisbane Airport, akin to Sydney’s longstanding regulations. They assert that such measures would alleviate the suffering of affected residents.

However, Brisbane Airport Corporation maintains that roughly 70 per cent of noise complaints pertain to daytime flights. They argue that imposing a curfew may not provide the anticipated relief and could lead to unintended consequences, including diverted flights and increased prices. Instead, the airport is exploring alternative flight paths over Moreton Bay waters to minimize the noise impact on residential areas.

The Path Forward

Efforts to mitigate the adverse effects of airport noise are underway, with the airport authorities collaborating with Air Services Australia to devise strategies that reduce flight concentration over residential communities, including Hamilton. 

The aim is to increase flight paths over the waters of Moreton Bay, thereby reducing the number of flights over homes. Air Services Australia, recognizing the mental distress caused by aircraft noise, now offers free mental health counselling services to affected Brisbane residents

The consequences of airport noise are not limited to specific suburbs; they reverberate across a wide swath of greater Brisbane, encompassing areas like Hamilton. Airservices Australia confirmed that residents in 226 suburbs, extending far beyond the Brisbane Local Government Area, have registered complaints about aircraft noise. This extensive problem impacts communities as far away as Upper Brookfield, Samford Valley, and Redland Bay, all while communities in Hamilton continue to bear the burden of this issue.

The Economic Dimension

Beyond the immediate health concerns, the issue carries significant economic implications, affecting not only specific areas like Hamilton but the entire region. While BFPCA argues for a curfew and flight cap, Brisbane Airport Corporation contends that such measures could negatively impact Queensland’s economy, projecting a shrinkage of $2.8 billion by 2032. 

This estimate represents just 0.08 per cent of the state’s $360 billion economy, raising questions about the balance between economic growth and the well-being of affected communities.

Published 5-Jan-2024

Hamilton Residents Express Concerns Over Motel Housing

Residents of Hamilton have voiced their concerns regarding the use of a local motel as emergency accommodation for families without housing.

Situated in one of the city’s most affluent areas, the motel in question has recently become a centre of contention as residents believe it poses an “imminent safety threat” to the community.

In a letter circulated among residents, the community expressed their discontent with the situation. 

“We already have seen some action getting certain people removed, and we need your help to get back to the safe and quiet neighbourhood that we had prior to the placement of these people,” the letter says in part.

The motel, currently used as temporary accommodation for homeless individuals, is managed by Micah Projects, a government-funded homelessness support service. The letter urged locals to contact state politicians, the motel management, and Micah Projects, to reclaim their once safe and quiet neighbourhood.

Concerns and Accusations

The letter points out several concerns, including the conduct of some motel occupants, alleging that Micah Projects had not adequately screened those placed in the motel for shelter or provided ongoing support. 

An anonymous Hamilton resident mentioned a recent incident involving a person with a knife threatening neighbours. 

Micah Projects CEO Karyn Walsh responded by asserting that the organisation is actively addressing community concerns and that problematic individuals have been removed. The arrangement between the motel and Micah Projects has been in place for years, with vacant rooms being used for short-term accommodation for those in need.

According to Ms Walsh, the primary goal is to transition vulnerable individuals from temporary motel stays into permanent homes as quickly as possible. She emphasised that the motel, as a private enterprise, establishes its standards for guest behaviour, and non-compliance may result in eviction.

While Micah Projects has made significant strides in housing homeless families and individuals, the ongoing housing crisis in Australia continues to be a challenge. Factors such as rising rents and property sales have contributed to the issue. 

Ms Walsh stressed the importance of efficient resource allocation and increased government housing to address the crisis and provide affordable shelter to those in need.

Despite community concerns, the Queensland Police Service (QPS) reported no specific increase in reports from the motel’s address. A QPS spokesperson encouraged concerned residents to report suspicious activity online or call 000 in emergencies.

Photo Credit: Unsplash

Eviction from Emergency Accommodation 

Following the letter’s release, a homeless family was evicted from emergency accommodation, claiming the family was a threat to community safety.  The family was subsequently moved to another hotel. The motel owner confirmed that the “residents of concern” had vacated the property.

This comes amidst Australia’s housing crisis. Many Australians are forced to live on the streets or in tents due to the situation. The National Shelter and SGS Economics and Planning report that property affordability has declined across most Australian capital cities, with regional Queensland being the least affordable for renters.

Published 10-Jan-2024

Brisbane River Heritage Trail: Sightseeing Cruise Through the City’s Storied Past

What better way to discover Brisbane’s history than on the river that shaped It? Drift back through the city’s storied past with Brisbane River Heritage Trail, a 90-minute sightseeing cruise along the river.

Read: Fresh Seafood and Relaxed Glamour: Fosh Brings Hamptons Vibes to Portside Wharf

The heritage trail by CityCat ferry allows travellers to immerse themselves in tales of the waterfront whilst enjoying panoramic views of today’s ever-changing skyline.

Map (Photo credit: Brisbane City Council)

The one-way ride starts at the Northshore Hamilton terminal and ends at UQ St Lucia. With stops along the route, riders can take the full roundtrip or hop on and off to explore Brisbane’s heritage at their own pace.

Brisbane River from Bowen Terrace, c. 1908 (State Library of Queensland)

The journey features 32 riverfront heritage sites identified in a mobile app. Users can select themed tours focused on Brisbane’s river trade, crossings, riverside living, wartime history, or local “Brisbane tuff” sandstone. Navigational hints guide riders whether travelling upstream or downstream.

Here are some of the sites at the Brisbane River Heritage Trail:

Living on the River

Toorak House flying the Union Jack, November 1921 (Photo credit: State Library of Queensland) 

Highlights along the route include grand 19th century riverside mansions like the Gothic-inspired Toorak House and Newstead House, Brisbane’s oldest surviving residence. The trail also showcases 20th century architectural gems, including the domed observatory tower of Home in Kangaroo Point and the row houses of Cook Terrace in Milton.

The Second World War

A 10,000-ton (10,160-tonne) cargo vessel under construction at the Evans Deakin & Co Ltd shipyards, 1943 (Photo credit: Australian War Memorial)

During the Second World War from 1942–45, General Douglas MacArthur established the headquarters of the Allied campaign in the South West Pacific in Brisbane. The city hosted many American and Allied troops, transforming Brisbane’s formerly quiet colonial culture stemming from its British roots. 

The Brisbane River was vital for wartime activities including substantial boat-building utilizing the Woolstores, docks and other riverside locations. Several famous American submarines docked at the South Brisbane Dry Dock and Naval Stores. 

View of the Limbless Soldiers’ Bowling Club, New Farm and the river, date unknown (Photo credit: State Library of Queensland)

Troops recovered at the former Limbless Soldiers’ Bowling Club and the former Evans Deakin Dry Dock. The influx of personnel thoroughly modernised Brisbane from its provincial past into a strategic centre of military operations in the Asia Pacific theatre.

Read: Northshore Hamilton Transformation Accelerated, Development Scheme Amendment Approved

Historic audio narrations and reenactments in the app share stories and anecdotes about select sites. Riders can further dive into Brisbane’s past by connecting to other heritage trails in the city centre and South Bank.

With panoramas of the Brisbane River, this journey through time is best experienced from the deck of a CityCat. Please note that a go card or prepaid ticket is required for travel. For more information, visit Translink’s website.

Published 4-January-2024