The Hobart

Hobart Happenings April 2020

by Hobart Magazine
Hobart Happenings April 2020
GP Outreach

Dr Meg MeKeown is medical director for Moreton Group Medical Services (MGMS) and has recently returned from a stint in Antarctica (you might remember she was our Local Lady in December). MGMS has funding from Primary Health Tasmania to provide after hours care to vulnerable Tasmanians. Meg shared with us, “We have a large box backed ambulance fitted out with all the gear we need to have a GP clinic anywhere. We travel to regular locations several evenings a week to see patients all over the greater Hobart region in their homes, in their emergency accommodation, at their local community centre or on the streets.” The service doesn’t cost the patient and all visits are bulk billed. How good is that. “We have extra funding from local philanthropic support to provide an affordable medicines program and we collaborate with Your Hobart Chemist to provide this program,” Meg said, “We’re proud to support the Salvation Army/Hobart City Mission Safe Space in the city which was opened just before Christmas last year.” The team is often seen operating the street clinic alongside St Vincent de Paul’s Loui’s Van as they deliver meals to the same population. Meg shared that they’re planning to evolve to include day time GP services, providing a stable and affordable day time GP service for our vulnerable Hobart population. The GP outreach has four General Practitioners working across the roster and all of the doctors are fully qualified and experienced General Practitioners.

Salamanca Square Big Screen Switch Off?

Many people choose to shield their children from the full extent of the news, and at home you can control how much they see. But outside the home, it’s becoming a little trickier. So there’s momentum growing to turn off the live Sky News feed from the big screen on The Mercury building in Salamanca Square. Parents have expressed concern at graphic news images and stories (there’s sound too if you haven’t seen the screen), as well as discussion about issues that might not be ideal for a public place with a mixed crowd. Is this screen really necessary? Could that graphic real estate be better utilised?

Mother’s Group second time around

We all know how valuable mothers and parents groups are for first time parents, but there’s also merit in second time mothers being supported via these groups. In mainland states second (and subsequent) time mums are encouraged to join their local group, but here in Tasmania this is not the case. There are many support groups – new parents, fathers, post natal support, premmie support, the list goes on, but for a second time around mum who’s had a pretty standard run, there’s no group support. All mums should have access to peer support, regardless of how many births are under their belt. First time parents can learn a great deal of “on the job” knowledge and other parents can enjoy the support and camaraderie that comes from being “in the trenches” on the same timeline as others.

Doing it for Disey

Voluntary assisted dying (VAD) will be up for discussion later this year, buoyed by a new campaign led by Jacqui and Natalie Gray. “We lost our Mum Diane, five months ago following an 11 month torturous battle with gastric cancer. We have become advocates for VAD as a promise to her, as she desperately wanted to utilise VAD for herself.” The sisters have launched Your Choice Tas, including a website, and a Facebook page. They shared, “We don’t want to force our opinion on anyone. We want to raise awareness that this legislation will hit parliament in August and if you believe you/we should have the right to make our own end of life choices, then now would be the time to act and have your voices heard. There’s a petition to be tabled in Parliament by Cassy O’Connor and we’re taking this opportunity to go around the politicians to address any concerns they may have regarding Mersey MLC Mike Gaffney’s consultation bill. We want to ensure everyone has a greater understanding of the proposed legislation and give Tasmanians the chance to have their voices heard on this matter.”

Oops! Correction.

We fired too soon. In last month’s issue we mentioned an horrific accident that occured at the Elizabeth Street bus interchange in February, where a woman had a roof panel fall on her which sliced her leg open and broke some bones. Another man was the first responder, and he ended up having a nasty fall knocking out his front teeth. We wrongly intimated the bus shelters were maintained by Metro Tasmania, when they are in fact the responsibility of the Hobart City Council. In any case, the poor woman was just on her way to work and has now ended up with an ongoing and awful injury, and the man stopped to help (like all good humans should!) and will now be out of pocket for expensive dental procedures and in lots of pain.

Single use plastic ban is on

The City of Hobart will proceed with a by-law banning the provision of single-use plastic takeaway food packaging and related items. Enforcement of the by-law will commence in 2021, following a period of trader and community education and awareness. It’s anticipated that the introduction of the by-law will result in a 600 tonne annual reduction in single-use plastics to landfill, which is a fantastic contribution to reducing our impact. The council has also resolved to lobby the Tasmanian Government to consider implementing a statewide initiative to reduce single-use plastics, so watch this space.

Test your Mettle

If the tragic murder of Hannah Clarke and her three children left you feeling helpless about what you can do, here’s a suggestion. It’s only small, but it could mean the world to a woman doing it tough. Mettle is an ethical gift delivery social enterprise employing women who are experiencing homelessness due to domestic and family violence. They equip survivors of domestic and family violence with the skills, confidence, and financial security required to secure and maintain employment and in turn, safe and stable housing. Once they’re working in the social enterprise, the Mettle team then assist these very brave women in finding long term employment in their chosen field. It’s such a great initiative with corporate and gift boxes start at $40 featuring some pretty cool products like Hey Tiger chocolate, Homie socks and Mettle’s own bath products and incense. Send a gift at

Arrested development

We’re 100% all in for appropriate development and moving Hobart, and Tasmania forward in the right direction. But the Gutwein government’s proposed Major Projects Legislation, which is coming up in Parliament in May, might not be the answer. It’s proposed that potential developments could be referred for consideration to be a major project by the proponent, the relevant Council or the Minister for Planning (currently Roger Jaensch). If the Minister deems something to be a Major Project, an independent panel specially convened by the Tasmanian Planning Commission will assess them. This takes the decision making away from elected members of the community and puts it into the hands of the government of the day’s chosen bureaucrats. It could result in opportunities for governmental secrecy and less accountability, while taking away genuine community consultation. Watch this space!


At the new playground at Fern Tree, a car pulled into the start of the Pipeline Track. An inquisitive five year old yelled out to his dad, “Is he allowed to park there?” The driver got out of the car and quipped, “Mate when you qualify as a cleaner you can park here too.”

Tasmanian Dragon Boat Paddlers Dominate

Dragon boat paddling may be a sport that dates back hundreds of years but it’s also a worldwide sport that many people enthusiastically participate in today. In Australia, our most talented paddlers strive to become members of the Aurora squad and compete internationally with the best of the best. Being accepted means that person has attained world class standard as a paddler. There’s no quota on Auroras. It depends on the number of people trying out for each campaign and if they can meet the standards required. Tasmania is very fortunate to currently have four Auroras, which is a magnificent achievement given our small size and population compared to the mainland states. In fact, all four Auroras are Hobart residents – Ali Mourant (Tasmanian head coach), Geoff Andrews, Angie Turner and Martin Turner.

How long did it take you to achieve Aurora status?

Ali: I tried out for the 2011 campaign unsuccessfully, so dedicated the next two years to training to successfully gain selection. I’ve represented Australia in 2013 (Hungary), 2015 (Canada), 2017 (China), 2019 (Thailand).

Geoff: I was paddling for four years before I thought I was competent enough to try out for the team.

What’s been the highlight of your journey?

Martin: Winning gold in Thailand in the Mixed 10’s with my wife Angie in the same boat!

Angie: The friendships and team bonding in the lead up and during the campaign, the sense of achievement, the feeling of 20 paddlers all paddling as one. ■

Love this


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Exploring Tassie These Winter School Holidays
We know that staying indoors with the family isn’t always fun. And while it’s obviously cold outside, you’re only a puffer jacket and beanie away from being comfortable and ready to explore. There’s lots of family fun to be had in all sorts of weird and wonderful places across the state these school holidays.
Sand Surfing on the Peninsula
The half-day walk to Crescent Beach in the Tasman National Park offers so much- including epic sand dunes for surfing and incredible views.
27 Hobart Friends Get Snipping For One Off Wine
The borders were declared shut in Tasmania on the 30th of March, 2020; the first stare to do so amid the COVID- 19 pandemic and hard lockdown of Hobart followed.
Danphe Nepalese and Indian Food + Peppermint Bay Bar and Bistro
Nepalese food is a comfort in our house. Having spent much time trekking and mountain climbing in Nepal as a younger man, Nepalese food is something I always love to go back to.
That’s DR Hannah Gadsby To You
From Smithton to Netflix and the Emmys stage, Tasmanian stand up comic Hannah Gadsby has forged an unlikely path. Following on from the massive success of her shows Nanette and Douglas, Hannah brings her new show Body of Work to Hobart this month.
PODCAST: Incat founder Robert Clifford on why electric boats are the future
Robert Clifford is the founder of Incat, a Hobart company building fast ferries for the world. Always looking to future opportunities, he has identified where Hobart sits in the next wave of transportation. For more of this interview listen to The Hobart Magazine podcast.
Is Tourism Ready For More Forestry Wars?
Tasmanian forests are special. They’re home to centuries-old trees, including the tallest flowering trees on the planet, and support unique native species. Yet not everyone agrees on how these forests should be managed.
Hobart Chefs: When The Obsession Becomes Real
Tasmania’s brand as a foodie haven is cemented. But within the local hospitality industry there are those who love to use local produce...and those who are next-level obsessed with it. We spoke to a bunch of Hobart chefs who are top of the game when it comes to fostering relationships with local farmers and growers.
Did You Know Australia’s First Female Doctor Was Hobartian?
Tasmania, despite its small size and population in comparison to the mainland, has produced more than its proportionally predicted percentage of significant figures and heroes of Australian history. 
Return Travellers Adding Pressure to Hobart Housing
For all of us 2020 was a year like no other, punctuated by rapid change and plenty of new challenges. For vulnerable people in Tasmania, including people facing homelessness, those on low incomes and those facing increasingly higher rents, it was very challenging. We are seeing a growing demand for homes in Tassie from international travellers returning home, people moving for work and others seeking the lifestyle that our Apple Isle has to offer.
AboutContributeAdvertiseNewsletter Sign UpContact
July 2022

Stay up to date with everything happening at the Hobart Magazine.

Thank you to Luke Brokensha for mobilising his friends and local residents recently to host two rubbish clean ups along the Hobart Rivulet after heavy rains.
The warm weather returns...hello summer.
Need a laugh? Check out @theinspiredunemployed feed on Instagram.
Moto Vecchia Cafe in Bellerive and Czegs Cafe in Richmond have joined the Clarence City Council dementia program, creating dementia-friendly spaces for all patrons.
It’s hard to believe it’s not standard practice to have a working phone in every aged care room - shared phones make private conversations impossible and increase the risk of spreading COVID-19.
Tacks on the tracks. Mountain bikers beware of tacks being left on certain tracks on the mountain.
Just when you think your cousins are alright. NZ Opposition Leader Judith Collins took aim at Tassie during her recent (unsuccessful) campaign, calling us Australia’s “poor cousin.” She also seems worried about us nabbing tech businesses, “It’s a lovely part of the world but do you necessarily want to go there with your high- tech business? Possibly not,” she said. We beg to differ!