News

We don't know s***: frustrated Pioneer Cottage residents

Pioneer Cottages residents Wal Baker, Raymond Kelly, Danny Murphy and Ray Britton are frustrated at the communication from the council on the future of pensioner housing in Warwick.
Pioneer Cottages residents Wal Baker, Raymond Kelly, Danny Murphy and Ray Britton are frustrated at the communication from the council on the future of pensioner housing in Warwick. Jayden Brown

FEAR of homelessness has made the past 12 months a far cry from the peaceful, comfortable life Pioneer Cottage residents had hoped for.

It's been a year since the residents were sent a letter from the Southern Downs Regional Council, informing them the units they call home would be sold.

Not a day has gone by since without the residents questioning their future.

Now they're faced with silence, not knowing what the future holds.

Resident Wal Baker said the last he had heard about the future of the units was in August.

The 78-year-old was told by the council a decision would be made in October.

Like his neighbours, he is frustrated about not knowing what's happening.

"I wanted to hear something yesterday," he said.

"God damn... it's been 12 months.

"The council have a real cheek keeping us in limbo."

The residents are determined to "bang down the door" to have their voices heard.

With an election just two months away, the residents want to make sure their plight hasn't been forgotten.

Should the council continue to provide accommodation for pensioners at the Pioneer Cottages in Warwick?

This poll ended on 13 January 2016.

Yes - 82%

No - 17%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

Ray Britton moved into his unit nine years ago.

He's lived through floods, but nothing has left him as insecure as this issue.

"We came here to grow old and die... that was the plan, to have somewhere comfortable to live out the rest of our days," he said.

"If they sold this place, where the hell would I go?"

Mr Britton said he hadn't heard anything, except what he had seen in the paper.

"They send us a little newsletter that tells us nothing," he said.

"None of us know s***.

"They (the council) need to be poked and prodded - they should be answerable to us residents."

In August, the then Director of Business and Community Services David Tuxford informed the Daily News negotiations with the State Government were under way.

Mr Tuxford said at the time a decision would be just weeks away.

Fast forward five months and those negotiations are still going, CEO David Keenan has confirmed.

"The SDRC and Minister for Housing and Public Works are still negotiating the details pertaining to the pensioner housing," he said.

Questions about the council's plans for the units in 2016 and what communication and consultation it had undertaken to keep the pensioners informed were left unanswered.

In January last year the council held a closed meeting with the residents to discuss the issue, promising to keep them updated. Resident Raymond Kelly said the council had failed in its promise to keep residents informed.

"We want to know what's going on," he said.

"They said if the place sold they'd give us 12 months' notice."

The residents, who are a mix of older, disabled and retired pensioners, said they felt let down by the council and would vote accordingly in March.

Topics:  community housing pioneer cottages southern downs regional council warwick



From London to Dalveen

NEW DIRECTION: London-born photographer and cinematographer is enjoying a change of pace since moving to the Granite Belt.

Filmmaker sets up home on Granite Belt property

An insiders guide to driving a car

SSSHHHHH: Andrew Gale is letting you in on a few secrets.

Get the inside goss from regular columnist Andrew Gale

Man charged over motorised pushbike

A man has been charged for riding an unregistered, motorised bike in Stanthorpe.

A man has been charged for having too much power on his pushbike.

Local Partners

Warwick teens skip STD protection

Thousands of teenage girls on the Southern Downs have skipped the life-saving cervical cancer vaccine.


Events you need to be at this week...

Andrew Lange races at Warwick Dragway.

No Prep Kaos drag racing open to all

Noll meltdown won't affect Gympie Oz Day concert

Shannon Noll

Photo Contributed

Shannon Noll is still expected to perform in Gympie next Thursday

T20 Warwick club round today

Cahal Davis bowls for Sovereign Animals at Slade Park this season.

Warwick cricket moves to T20 format

50 Shades actress on why she hates the film

Dornan and Johnson’s frequent sex scenes were ‘awkward’ to film. Picture: SuppliedSource:Supplied

Jamie Dornan doesn’t blame you for hating 50 Shades

Chris Hemsworth’s X-rated compliment to former co-star

Australian actor Chris Hemsworth poses on the red carpet for the European premiere of the film 'Avengers: Age of Ultron' in London on April 21, 2015.

THOR star once paid former Home and Away actress a lewd compliment.

'I can't keep my mouth shut any longer'

Singer George Michael.

George Michael’s cousin blasts singer’s boyfriend Fadi Fawaz.

Fresh faces: NCIS gets a shake up with new cast members

The new cast of NCIS, from left, Rocky Carroll, Pauley Perrette, Sean Murray, David McCallum, Brian Dietzen, Wilmer Valderrama, Emily Wickersham, Mark Harmon, Duane Henry and Jennifer Esposito.

THREE new characters join naval drama for season 14.

First the Onesie, now an Xbox One S inflatable controller

Fancy an inflatable Xbox One S controller?

Inflatable controller 'perfect sidekick' for Australia Day party

Sarah Harris: Here’s what Amber Sherlock should’ve done

Studio 10 and Shark Tank presenter Sarah Harris.

STUDIO 10 host says Sherlock could’ve avoided the subsequent uproar.

Historical home leaves family's hands after 75 years

SALE CONFIRMED: The Gympie Regional   Realty team which sold the Ramsey property are (back) Mel Gastigar, Dorothy Palmer and Margaret Cochrane, with (front) home seller Terri-Jayne Ramsey.

Ramsey family played a huge role in Gympie's growth.

What a year 2016 proved to be

Entrance Island, Birtinya

Get the inside info from the agents themselves

REVEALED: What Coast wants in an international airport

Sunshine Coast business people share their views on what's needed

Time for a cool change

43 Eckersley Ave, Buderim.

Family home goes to the auction floor

Designer home set in lush tropical gardens

This home has it all and more

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!