Safeguarding Chelmer: Residents Take Charge Against Youth Crime

Residents in the affluent Brisbane suburb of Chelmer, along with neighbouring suburbs like Graceville and Sherwood, have resorted to drastic measures to combat rising youth crime rates. They’ve employed the services of a private security guard and his highly-trained dogs, spending thousands of dollars weekly in their bid to protect their community. 



Frustrated with what they perceive as a lacklustre response from the government and courts regarding youth crime, residents have initiated community efforts to enhance safety. 

One local, a young father, spearheaded these actions after a disturbing incident involving juveniles allegedly armed with machetes breaking into a mother’s home in Sherwood. He expressed discontent with government inaction and emphasised the urgency of addressing the escalating problem.

Patrols and Surveillance

Under the guidance of ex-army reservist Dan Walker, Walker Security conducts patrols equipped with highly visible vehicles and trained protection dogs. Daily reports from these patrols keep residents informed of any suspicious activities. 

Walker Security
Photo Credit: Walker Security/Facebook

The visible presence of security personnel and their vigilant monitoring have significantly deterred criminal activities, contributing to a notable decrease in reported offences, particularly in Chelmer, where property values are high.

When the locals took matters into their own hands in November 2023, the residents claimed that crime rates plummeted by as much as 80 per cent in their area.

Chelmer crime stats
Chelmer Crime Statistics Feb 2023 to Feb 2024
Photo Credit: QPS

Based on the Queensland Police Services statistics, the number of offences like robbery, unlawful entry, and theft have decreased in the suburbs.

Chelmer crime stats
Chelmer Offences (Robbery, Unlawful Entry, Theft) – Aug 2023 to Feb 2024
Photo Credit: QPS
Chelmer crime stats
Chelmer Offences (Robbery, Unlawful Entry, Theft) – Nov 2023 to Feb 2024
Photo Credit: QPS

Police Response and Strategies for 2024

While community-led initiatives strive to mitigate immediate concerns, law enforcement agencies still grapple with long-term solutions. 

Queensland’s Acting Assistant Commissioner for Youth Crime, Andrew Massingham, outlines police strategies for 2024, emphasising the need for swift action against violent youth offenders. With a focus on early intervention and prevention, police aim to address the root causes of youth crime while utilising technologies such as GPS trackers to monitor offenders.



Amidst these efforts, academic voices like Associate Professor Troy Allard from Griffith University, advocate for a systemic rethink in approaching youth justice. 

Criticising the current emphasis on deterrence, Dr Allard suggests a shift towards prevention-focused interventions, highlighting the need for holistic support systems involving therapy and family supervision. Such initiatives, he argues, could yield more meaningful and sustainable outcomes in addressing youth crime.

Police Commissioner Steps Down

Amidst growing tensions within police ranks and criticisms over the handling of recent incidents, Police Commisioner Katarina Carroll announced her decision to step down during a meeting with Police Minister Mark Ryan at Brisbane Airport on 20 February 2024. Her resignation follows heightened speculation and comes in the wake of concerns over the state’s response to youth crime.

Despite Premier Steven Miles’ previous support, Carroll emphasised the need to “clear the air” and allow the Queensland Police Service to focus on addressing critical issues. As discussions swirl around her departure, attention turns to the future leadership of the force and the ongoing challenges in tackling youth offending.

Commissioner Carroll’s last day will be on 1 March 2024, months out from when her contract was due to finish. She was appointed to the role in 2019, becoming the first woman in the position after serving as commissioner of the Queensland Fire and Emergency Service.

Published 20-Feb-2024

Sherwood Mounts Annual Crusade Against Cane Toads at the Sherwood Arboretum

The Sherwood Arboretum will once again host the annual Toad Bust, a key event in the Australian ecological calendar, aiming to tackle the growing problem of Cane Toads in the region.



This invasive species, the Rhinella marina, poses a serious threat to Australia’s native wildlife and ecosystems, making the Toad Bust not just an event, but a vital environmental mission.

The Sherwood Annual Toad Bust is scheduled for Saturday, 20 Jan 2024, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at 87 Jolimont St.

The Sherwood Arboretum, part of the Brisbane Botanic Gardens collection, is a heritage-listed site officially opened on World Forestry Day in 1925. It spans 15 hectares and houses approximately 1100 trees from around 250 species, showcasing diverse botanical collections and a grand avenue of 72 kauri pines.

The Impact of Cane Toads

Cane Toads are known for devastatingly impacting Australian native wildlife, poisoning thousands of pets, and adversely affecting local agriculture. They have a lifespan of over 10 years in the wild, with a single female capable of producing up to 35,000 eggs per breeding cycle.

The Great Cane Toad Bust encourages community participation in tackling this environmental menace. People are urged to engage in toad busting, tadpole trapping, and humane euthanasia of the toads, contributing to the collective effort to control their population.

On the Ground: Toadbusters in Action

Simon Middap, a semi-retired IT engineer and enthusiastic “toadbuster” shares his experience of the overwhelming presence of Cane Toads on the Pacific Harbour golf estate in Queensland. He highlights the practical challenges they face, like the difficulty in finding a spot to place a golf ball due to the sheer number of toadlets.

Middap describes their catch-cry, “TTTT” (Terrorise toads every third Thursday), illustrating their consistent efforts in managing the toad population. This reflects the community’s commitment to environmental conservation.

Environmental and Scientific Perspectives

Due to recent weather patterns, Dr. Jodi Rowley, a frog biologist, emphasises the favourable breeding conditions for amphibians, including Cane Toads. She underscores the importance of local initiatives like toad busts in positively impacting local wildlife.

The introduction of Cane Toads in 1935 by Queensland’s sugar cane growers marks a critical point in Australia’s environmental history. Their intention to control beetle species affecting sugar cane crops backfired, leading to the widespread invasion of toads across the country.



The Sherwood Annual Toad Bust is more than an event; it’s proof of the power of community involvement in environmental conservation. With initiatives like this, Australians demonstrate their resilience and commitment to protecting their unique ecosystems and wildlife.

Published 19-Jan-2024

Parklands Sherwood Developer Seeks Approval for 193 More Units

A major residential development has been proposed for Sherwood, seeking to add up to 193 units to the evolving Parklands community.


Read: Developer Plans Upgrades for Ageing Sherwood Central Woolworths


Submitted by architecture firm Rothelowman, the plans envision four new buildings on a two-hectare site at 26 Egmont Street, adjacent to the existing Parklands at Sherwood complex.

The proposed development aims to make efficient use of the space by co-locating the four buildings on site whilst still providing green spaces and retail options. 

Photo credit: Rothelowman 

The dwellings themselves offer a mix of unit types, mostly one-bedroom units but also some three-bedroom options.

Specifics of the proposal include realigning internal roadways to improve site access, increasing bicycle parking to 54 spaces, enhancing communal amenities like public gathering areas, and ensuring private outdoor space for townhouse residents. 

Photo credit: Rothelowman 

The buildings are designed to take advantage of nearby public transit whilst also providing 325 on-site car parking spots.

The development application seeks to modify prior approvals for the site by extending into unused stages and tweaking prior building envelopes and dwelling mixes. 

Photo credit: Rothelowman 

According to planners, developers have taken this opportunity to re-evaluate the masterplan and update the development’s design to align with present-day market preferences and standards. The revisions aim to produce housing that caters to current demands and expectations. 

If approved, it would represent a major extension of the Parklands complex, bringing hundreds of new modern housing options to a neighbourhood already seeing rapid growth and evolution.


Read: Locals Raise Concerns on Proposed New Gym and Wellness Centre on Graceville Avenue


The proposal is currently under review by Brisbane City Council. Construction timelines and sales details have not yet been publicly shared by the development team.

Published 10-December-2023 

New Fitness Opportunities in Sherwood Promote Health and Community

Residents in Sherwood and the nearby suburbs are encouraged to take advantage of two exciting fitness activities that have recently started in the area: a walking group and a dance workshop. These activities not only offer health benefits but also provide a platform for fostering community connections.

Walking Group Offers Heart-Healthy Benefits

A new walking group has emerged in Sherwood and it’s already attracting attention from locals eager to prioritise their health and well-being. The group meets every Friday at 8:30 a.m. in front of the Sherwood Neighbourhood Centre, located at 38 Thallon St. 

Whether you’re a dog owner looking to give your furry friend some exercise or a parent with a pram, the walking group welcomes everyone. 

Walking for just 30 minutes a day can significantly lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, and Type 2 diabetes. Additionally, engaging in regular physical activity like walking can help manage weight, blood pressure, blood cholesterol, and even reduce the risk of certain cancers. The benefits extend to improving bone density, balance, and coordination, which contribute to preventing injuries.

Scan the QR code to learn the details on how to join this weekly activity or phone Katrina at 0478 415 946.

Sherwood Walking Group
Photo Credit: Sherwood Neighbourhood Centre

Dance Workshop Revives 80’s Spirit

In addition to the walking group, Sherwood’s community has had an exciting dance workshop that promises a trip down memory lane. The Common People Dance project offers free dance classes, where participants can learn and showcase their dance moves. 

The workshops take place every Thursday from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Sherwood Uniting Church Hall on Sherwood Rd and will run until the 7th of Sept 2023. On that night, a dance party will be underway from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Sherwood Dance Workshop
Photo Credit: Sherwood Neighbourhood Centre

With a blend of nostalgia and new moves, the workshop aims to bring together individuals from all walks of life. The activity is all about having fun, getting some exercise, and sharing a laugh with fellow attendees. Whether you’re an experienced dancer or someone just looking to have a good time, these workshops are open to all.

Residents interested in joining the dance workshops are encouraged to RSVP to sandiellen@benarrawa.org.au or phone the Benarrawa Community Development Association‘s mobile at 0411 596 002.  

Whether you’re lacing up your sneakers for a brisk walk or brushing up on your dance skills, these fitness events have something to offer for everyone seeking a healthier lifestyle.

Published 18-Aug-2023

Meet the Sherwood Artist Behind the Brisbane Bin Chicken Trail

“Guerilla art” doesn’t always have to be street graffiti a la Banksy. This Sherwood artist, Ryan Forster, has brought street art to a quirky and different level with his metal bin chickens popping up all over town, sparking interest among passers-by and on social media.



The project began innocently enough when Mr Forster was making various metal animal sculptures and his barber playfully suggested trying a bin chicken, a colloquial term used in Australia for the ibis, due to their scavenging nature. 

Forster placed an initial six pieces of these artistic creations around Brisbane as part of what he called the “Brisbane Bin Chicken Trail.” Two sculptures were placed in the Queen St Mall, one at Milton train station, and another one at an Oxley roundabout, the latter installed in a daring midnight operation.

A TikTok video showcasing the project went viral, attracting significant attention and numerous requests from businesses wanting their own official bin chicken sculptures. Forster added a humorous and unique design, with the ibis holding an XXXX can, that appealed to the public. 

@sethiusart just making Brisbane classier. #brisbane #binny #binchicken #art #streetart ♬ This Is How We Do It – Montell Jordan

However, the art project faced setbacks as some individuals couldn’t resist pilfering these whimsical pieces of art. Apparently, some ibis enthusiasts decided to take matters into their own hands and stole the sculptures from a roundabout and the bustling Queen St Mall.

“I made metal bin chickens and installed them around Brisbane as public art but unfortunately they kept getting stolen!” Mr Forster said.

“People loved them and they went viral all the time so I knew I needed a way to make them more permanent. I came up with the Bin Chicken Trail where businesses, homeowners and communities would buy a ‘Binny’ and I would attach it securely on their premises. 

“It helps to bring eyes to their business and feet in their door. But moreover it’s a bit of fun, gives people a laugh and supports wildlife conservation charities.”

@sethiusart but where? 🤔 another stop on the Bin Chicken Trail complete. #binchicken #Brisbane #queensland #binny #metalart #straya #funny #fun #art #coffee #newfarm ♬ HAD ME LIKE [CLEAN] – Lem Thyret

Nonetheless, not all hope is lost for the bin chicken aficionados. 

A law firm from Caboolture, Murray Torcetti lawyers, has taken a stance against the pilferers by commissioning their rooftop version of the bin chicken, which fittingly clutches the scales of justice.

@sethiusart This Binny needs a special name. @James Torch from Murray Torcetti will pick the winner. #caboolture #binchicken #binny #metalart #sculpture #art #Brisbane ♬ original sound – Sethius Art

James Torcetti, a partner at the law firm, said that they decided to get a bin chicken for their rooftop because they “love a laugh.” It’s also quite symbolic because bin chickens are known underdogs that deserve to be fought for. 

Meanwhile, the artist remains undeterred by the thefts and has plans to create eight more bin chicken sculptures around Brisbane. He has a particular interest in suburbs like Darras and Oxley, where appreciation for this style of art runs high.



Originally from Victoria, Mr Forster also worked in Britain before going home to embark on his art projects.

For more information about Forster and Sethius Art, follow his TikTok page and visit his official site.

Published 3-Aug-2023

Sherwood Resident Blames Mould Exposure in Rented Unit for 3-Month Induced Coma, Damaged Pancreas

A Sherwood resident, who was in an induced coma for three months, has lived to tell the tale about his health issues and is warning others about the dangers of mould exposure. 



Terence Clay, 33, claimed that he had unfortunately lived in a mould-infested home for two years, frequently experiencing respiratory issues. 

Fearing a heart attack one day, Mr Clay was taken to the hospital where doctors determined he had to undergo an emergency tracheostomy after he passed out. Three months later, he woke up from an induced coma at the hospital and learned that he suffered from necrotising pancreatitis.

Doctors told the Sherwood resident that his pancreas “melted away” because of the toxins that were discovered to be from mould in his house. 

Although his medical abstract did not directly link his necrotising pancreatitis to the mould in his unit, a Sunshine Coast doctor specialising in mould illness said there have been animal studies confirming that toxins from moulds can lead to severe health issues. 

“There are some animal studies showing that various mycotoxins (toxins from mould species) can cause severe damage to the pancreas, as has happened in this case, but no more certain evidence showing a link between pancreatitis and mould exposure,” Dr Sandeep Gupta said. “However I would certainly not rule out the possibility.”

Moulds
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Worksafe Queensland also underscores that mould issues may lead to fungal infection and cause systemic reactions that can be life-threatening. 

Moulds develop as a result of humidity issues brought on by poor ventilation and waterproofing in rental properties. It can re-occur especially when a leaking roof or a wall cavity remains unfixed.  



Mr Clay first raised the mould issues with his landlord in August 2021 but there were no immediate actions to resolve it other than to paint over the walls. As a result, Mr Clay has discussed going the legal route to sue his landlord for his long-term health issues.  

New Sherwood Development Applications

Sherwood homeowners are taking the opportunity to develop their properties or spruce up their homes, especially now that the summer season is just around the corner. These are the recent development applications in progress or are already approved.


Read: Corinda Heritage House Up for Extension


Reconfiguration of Lot

Sherwood
Photo credit: Brisbane City Council

Location: 16 Woodberry Ave, Sherwood

The proposed development is for reconfiguring a lot into three lots. The applicant originally proposed to demolish the existing dwelling house on-site but has filed proposed changes, to rearrange the approved lot layout and facilitate the retention of the house.

Sherwood
Subject site (Photo credit: Google Street View)

The tennis court and the swimming pool will be removed whilst the dwelling house will remain in place. The reconfiguration of the existing layout avoids the demolition of the existing house on-site, which is a five-bedroom house built in 1985. The property has a land size of 3490 sqm whilst the house has a floor size of 385 sqm. 

Dwelling House Extension

Sherwood
Photo credit: Google Street View

Location: 114 Plumer St, Sherwood

The applicant has filed for development permit for an unenclosed carport extension to the existing dwelling house, which has a total area of 647 sqm. 

“As the proposal is for an unenclosed carport extension to the existing dwelling house, it is considered that the development has a high degree of flood immunity and meets the applicable performance outcome of the code,” the planning document reads.

Carry Out Building Work

Location: 11 Skew St, Sherwood

Sherwood
Photo credit: Google Street View

A private building certification company has received an approval to build over or near a stormwater pipe. According to Queensland’s development code, an approval should be given first for those who are planning to work near or above pipes.

Extension of Pre-1946 Dwelling

Location: 51 Dudley St, Sherwood

Photo credit: Google Street View

The applicant is requesting some changes to approved plans for partial demolition and extensions of a Pre-1946 dwelling house, with the minor change application seeking to change the approved material for the garage door.

Based on planning documents, the applicant requests to demolish the roof, western verandah railing and lower portions of the ground floor wall, to facilitate the proposed extensions for a verandah and double garage. 


Read: Chelmer School of Arts (Former): Among Early Queensland’s Status Symbols


The site contains a pre-1946 detached Dwelling House which is understood to have been used for residential purposes since the time of its initial subdivision. The building is identified as having historic extensions that have built on the original fabric of the dwelling.

New Flood Information Online Tool Goes Live

Photo Credit: Screengrabbed from Flood Information Online Tool

Brisbane has a new flood information online tool that will help people find and verify information easier, including the history of past floodings that devastatingly impacted suburbs like Oxley, Graceville, Chelmer and Sherwood.



The new online tool aims to help Brisbane residents become more flood-resilient and better prepared for severe weather disturbances. The tool was developed after over a thousand ground surveys and hydrology or hydraulic models to generate updated maps. Inspections were also undertaken at 550 sites across 90 vital locations.  

The map has shown that flood-prone sites over the Walter Taylor Bridge were far more impacted during the 2011 flooding compared to 2022 whilst the overland flow in the northern suburbs was significantly bigger during the recent floods compared to a decade ago.

“We’ve rolled out new, interactive flood maps and updated our FloodWise Property Reports to help you better understand your flood risk and how it could impact your home and local area,” Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said.  

“We’ve used the best tools and technology available to create user-friendly maps, which display information with clearer navigation, simpler language, and improved functionality across devices. 

We can’t stop severe weather, but we can be better prepared and the new Flood Information Online tool is available 24/7.”

To complement the online tool, Council is also encouraging residents to download the free Brisbane Severe Weather Alerts.

“More than 11,750 residents have signed up for the free alerts since the February flood event, but it remains important if you’re not registered to sign up so you can be prepared,” the mayor said. 



Meanwhile, for Oxley, Chelmer, Graceville and Sherwood residents who were affected by the February flooding, a series of community information sessions about the Resilient Homes Fund are still ongoing, per Cr Nicole Johnston of the Tennyson Ward.

Sherwood Property Market Grew to Nearly 40%

The Sherwood property market has had a staggering 40 per cent median house price growth in the period ending December 2021, an impressive finish amidst a slight slowdown observed in other markets. 

Highlights

  • Sherwood’s housing market posted an astounding 38.91 per cent median growth from January 2021 to December 2021, putting the median at $1,285,000.
  • Its unit market, whilst significantly lower than the housing market, has also posted a 3.57 per cent median growth, putting the median at $435,000.
  • The Sherwood property market is expected to continue its upward trend. 

Sherwood House Price Growth

Data from Property Market Updates for the period covering January to December 2021 has shown Sherwood’s extraordinary growth of 38.92 per cent. This has drawn the median house price upward from $925,000 in the previous year to $1,285,000 for this period. 

Sherwood House Price Growth
Photo Credit: Property Market Updates

The market closed 111 property sales with an average of 37 days on market. Investors bought three- and four-bedroom houses the most as interstate migration continues to drive housing demand. In spite of the increase, affordability has been a key factor in Brisbane’s property market in general compared to other locations.

Sherwood’s housing market has been steadily trending upward for a few years given its family and child-friendly appeal. With heaps of access to parkways and green spaces, this suburb favours a variety of demographics from young families setting their roots, to dynamic professionals or entrepreneurs, and retirees. 



Sherwood Unit Price Growth

The unit market in Sherwood is slowly picking up for this period as well with a 3.57 per cent median growth from last year. Whilst not as strong as the housing market, Sherwood’s median unit price at $435,000 is perfect for first-home buyers or downsizers who do not need a spacious house to maintain.

Sherwood Unit Price Growth
Photo Credit: Property Market Updates

Apartment sales for this period closed with 137 successful transactions with unit listings staying an average of 49 days on the market. Buyers were mostly keen to pick two-bedroom units which are more compact and manageable for their lifestyle. 

At least 17 per cent of townhomes and 17 per cent of apartments make up Sherwood’s unit property market, providing a good alternative for those with a more conservative budget to invest in a detached house. 

About Sherwood

Sherwood is found 11 kilometres southwest of the city and is popular for its stately Queenslander homes, leafy riverside location, and wholesome outdoor lifestyle. Bordered by the suburbs of Corinda, Graceville, and Tennyson, Sherwood is the home of the heritage-listed Sherwood Arboretum, a 15-hectare parkland with thousands of trees. 

Far away enough from the city bustle, Sherwood has a convenient train station that takes commuters approximately 20 minutes to their work or school in the inner city. The suburb, however, is filled with heaps of quaint shops in an established business district along Sherwood Road, where residents can have all their essentials. 

Photo Credit: Google Maps

Sherwood has a number of good schools, both private and public, as well. It’s not unusual to see kids cycling around or groups enjoying a picnic or barbecue at the parklands during the weekends. Its laidback lifestyle makes Sherwood such a lovely location to raise a family.



“It has SO much going for it. Not only is it great for resale value, but it’s also close to everything – city, shopping, recreation, entertainment, transport, the river. It has a great sense of community about it, with excellent schools & general facilities. It’s the kind of place we not only want to live in…but would like to invest in also.” 

Trio

“There aren’t many suburbs with the old world feel and values left in Brisbane and those that have the same feelings are far and few. Most streets are tree-lined (mature trees), the classic Queenslander architecture and so many well-renovated homes on big blocks and space for kids to run around is wonderful! It’s just a wonderful place to start and bring up your family!”

Nors

Malia Knox: 9-Year-Old Fights for New Female Monuments in Queensland

After a trip to the Sherwood Arboretum, nine-year-old girl Malia Knox urged the Queensland Government to provide proper representation for women and girls across the State via public statues, pictures and plaques.



During a visit to the Sherwood Arboretum with her mother, Kelley Knox, Malia questioned why all the plaques at the central promenade were dedicated to men. With her curiosity piqued, she sought out to see if there were any public monuments within the area dedicated to women.

Malia’s research has revealed that there are currently only three statues of women in Brisbane: the suffragette Emma Miller, Lady Diamantina Bowen, and Laura Geitz, the captain of the Australian Diamonds. This revelation, combined with the fact that there were six statues of men at Suncorp Stadium alone, prompted Malia to begin her project: #femalefaces4publicplaces. 

Following Malia’s efforts, the Palaszczuk Government has shown its willingness and support. Shannon Fentiman, Attorney-General and Minister for Women, stands with Malia and applauds her for her work towards gender equality.

“It’s fantastic to see young Queenslanders like Malia are passionate about gender equality,” says Ms. Fentiman. “Speaking out and calling for change. We know there is a huge disparity between male and female representation across our public monuments thanks to Malia’s work on her #femalefaces4publicplaces project.” 

The project revolved around the creation of a Parliamentary Petition. This petition vied for the creation of a law that requires 50 per cent of statues, pictures and plaques in public spaces in Queensland to depict real women.

Malia’s project managed to gain almost 800 signatures total. According to Ms. Fentiman, the Palaszczuk Government is committed to making sure the public monuments in Queensland reflect contemporary views as well as the communities people live in.

“By doing all we can to increase the representation of real women and girls in memorials and monuments in Queensland, we are continuing to make a positive difference to the lives of women and girls in Queensland, such as Malia,” Ms. Fentiman concludes. 

The park and heritage site that started Malia’s project, the Sherwood Arboretum, can be found at 57 Dewar Terrace, Sherwood.