Tuesday, January 25, 2011

2011 Australians of the Year

Simon McKeon

This evening the Australian Prime Minister Hon Julia Gillard MP announced Simon McKeon as the 2011 Australian of the Year. The 55 year Victorian has come to prominence due to his philanthropic efforts in supporting charities both nationally and internationally. Following a successful career as an investment banker, Mr McKeon has worked to support charities including MS Research Australia, World Vision International and Red Dust Role Models.

Jessica Watson

In the same ceremony the Prime Minister announced Jessica Watson as the Young Australian of the Year. The 17 year old from Queensland won the hearts of the nation when she successfully circumnavigated the globe, unassisted, in her yacht Ella’s Pink Lady in 2010.

Ron McCallum

The Senior Australian of the Year is Professor Ron McCallum AO of Artarmon, NSW. Having served as Professor and Dean of Law at the University of Sydney, Prof McCallum has been recognised as a fervent campaigner for equal rights. He is also totally blind and is a deputy chair of Vision Australia.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Australian research shows sharks are colour blind.


Researchers at the University of Queensland and University of Western Australia have conducted tests that conclude sharks are colour blind.

Professor Nathan Hart believes that wearing brightly coloured swimming costumes that are high contrast against the background, are likely to be more visible to sharks. This could be valuable knowledge in an attempt to reduce shark attacks.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Brisbane Floods

Brisbane 1974 Floods

In January 1974, the city of Brisbane in the State of Queensland was flooded due to a combination of sustained rain over several months, high tides and heavy rain caused by Tropical Cyclone Wanda. The floods peaked at 6.6 metres on 29 January and nearly 7,000 homes were destroyed.

Today, the population of Brisbane is battling flooding once again with a flood peak expected at 2:30PM today. Please consider donating to the Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal to help those whose lives have been devastated by this natural disaster.


Did you know that the common architectural style of homes in Queensland, known as the Queenslander, was designed to help keep homes cool in summer and to offer some protection from flooding? The design involves building the house on large stumps with the main living areas being a full storey off the ground. Quite useful as this picture from the 1974 floods demonstrates.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Australia’s 1st Cricket Test Match

Australian Cricket

Did you know that Australia’s first cricket test match was played in Melbourne in March 1877 against England?

Australia managed to win by 45 runs with a score of 349 to England’s 304.

The highest score was achieved by Charles Bannerman – who opened for Australia - with 165 runs in the 1st Innings. This was also his career best.

Those were the days.