Year in review: Looking back on 2015 in Queensland

It has been a big year for Queensland.

A new State Government was elected, the North Queensland Cowboys were crowned NRL premiers, Johnny Depp and Barnaby Joyce duked it out over two dogs, and we even had a couple of earthquakes just to shake things up.

The state was also rocked by horrific acts of violence, political scandals and unfortunate accidents on our roads.

Take a look back at what made headlines in the Sunshine State in 2015.

Dec 7, 2015

Newman government booted after one term

January 31, 2015

Given Campbell Newman's meteoric rise from Brisbane lord mayor to Queensland premier, few could have predicted his fall from grace just three years into the state's top job.

But the LNP's record landslide victory against Labor in the 2012 election was undone early this year when Labor took 44 seats in Parliament, and with the support of independent Peter Wellington, was able to form a minority government led by Annastacia Palaszczuk.

Piglets, possums used as live bait in greyhound training

February 16, 2015

Australia's greyhound racing industry was thrown into turmoil after a Four Corners report revealed conclusive evidence of live baiting during secret training sessions.

Footage captured at training tracks in Queensland formed part of the investigation lead to some greyhound trainers being banned from training, preparing or owning a registered racing animal in the state for life.

Cyclone Marcia makes landfall

February 20, 2015

The first cyclone of the season to cross the coastline in 2015 came in late February.

Tropical Cyclone Marcia smashed into the central Queensland coast as a category five system, making landfall at the largely uninhabited Shoalwater Bay before "grazing" regional beachside town Yeppoon and eventually impacting Rockhampton where it ripped roofs off homes and uprooted trees.

Cyclone Nathan makes landfall in far north

March 20, 2015

It was not even a month on from Marcia before Queensland received another coast-crossing cyclone.

Tropical Cyclone Nathan made landfall in far north Queensland in the early hours of March 20 as a category four system, but thankfully the damage was not as bad as Marcia.

Domestic violence allegations made against Billy Gordon

March 27, 2015

The balance of power in Queensland's Parliament appeared shaky in March when allegations of domestic violence were levelled against new Labor MP Billy Gordon, leading to him admitting to a long criminal history that he had not disclosed to his colleagues.

Mr Gordon subsequently resigned from the Labor party as a result.

Queenslanders pause to remember fallen servicemen and women

April 25, 2015

Australia's fallen servicemen and women were remembered in so many different way across Queensland on Anzac Day 2015.

In Brisbane, tens of thousands of people turned out to honour servicemen and women, past and present, at the annual Anzac Day parade through the heart of the city.

It came hours after a poignant dawn service in the city's Anzac Square.

Five die in freak south-east Queensland storm

May 1, 2015

Five people died and a further 58 had to be rescued from floodwaters after south-east Queensland was slammed by a storm system that will go down in history as a "one-in-a-1,000-year rain event" in May.

The torrential downpour was so severe that over the space of five hours more than 4,000 triple-o calls were made.

Queensland drought spreads to record 80pc of state

May 13, 2015

In 2015, Queensland's drought spread to a record 80 per cent of the state, the largest area ever officially recognised as being in drought.

In May, a total of 33 councils and three part council areas were drought declared, with 63 individual drought declared properties in a further five council areas.

Barnaby Joyce threatens to euthanise Johnny Depp's dogs

May 14, 2015

Boo and Pistol, the pet Yorkshire terriers belonging to actor Johnny Depp and wife Amber Heard, were threatened to be euthanised by Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce after they were brought into Australia allegedly without being declaring.

The ensuring drama caused a social media frenzy amid concerns the dogs would be rendered "stateless", an ongoing court case against Heard, and a joke that Mr Depp would "assault" Mr Joyce if his wife was jailed over the matter.

Daniel Morcombe's killer loses appeal against his conviction

May 21, 2015

The man jailed for killing Queensland schoolboy Daniel Morcombe had his appeal against his conviction dismissed in late May.

Brett Peter Cowan was in 2014 sentenced to life in prison with a non-parole period of 20 years for killing 13-year-old Daniel in 2003.

Ravenshoe cafe explosion kills two, injures more than a dozen

June 9, 2015

Tragedy struck the small north Queensland town of Ravenshoe in early June when a ute ploughed into the rear of the Serves You Right Cafe, hitting gas bottles which ignited an explosion.

Two people - Nicole Nyholt, also known as Nicole Dempsey, and Margaret Clark, died from their injuries in the days following the blast while about 20 other people were hospitilised with up to eight suffering critical injuries.

Former Olympian and Gold Coast mayor Ron Clarke dies

June 17, 2015

Olympian, businessman and former politician Ron Clarke died on the Gold Coast this year.

The Australian running legend, former world record holder and Olympic medallist — who was honoured with both an AO and MBE — died after a short illness in a private hospital on the morning of June 17.

He was 78.

Queensland rugby league player dies after being injured in tackle

June 21, 2015

Queensland's rugby league community went into mourning in late June with the passing of Sunshine Coast Falcon's player James Ackerman.

The 25-year-old forward was knocked unconscious by a shoulder charge early in the first half of the Falcons versus Norths Devils game in Nundah and never regained consciousness.

Queensland Firebirds win trans-Tasman netball championship

June 21, 2015

The Queensland Firebirds claimed the trans-Tasman netball championship in late June with a nail-biting win over the New South Wales Swifts in Brisbane.

We'll look back and tell our grandchildren that these were the most amazing moments of our lives.

Firebirds captain Laura Geitz

In a gripping contest, the Swifts looked to withstand heavy pressure from the hosts, leading 56-55 with less than a minute to go but the Firebirds battled ferociously in the dying stages, netting the last five goals of the game to claim a 57-56 victory and their first-championship title since 2011.

Queensland Chief Justice resigns following year of controversy

July 1, 2015

Queensland's Chief Justice Tim Carmody, who was plagued by sustained criticism from the judiciary and legal fraternity since his appointment by the Newman government in 2014 ahead of other, longer serving judges, announced his resignation at the beginning of July.

He had offered his resignation in May on the condition the Government agree to overhaul the "festering" judiciary, including a judicial commission.

Brisbane's Story Bridge turns 75

July 5, 2015

It was a story three-quarters of a century in the making and to many it was over far too soon.

A total of 74,000 people were on the guest list for Brisbane's heritage-listed Story Bridge's birthday bash in July, which was celebrated with a day-long Eat Street Market event along the entire one-kilometre, six-lane bridge.

Maroons win State of Origin series

July 8, 2015

Queensland regained State of Origin supremacy in 2015 after they humiliated the New South Wales Blues with a record 52-6 victory in the series decider at Lang Park.

Heading into Game Three with one win in the series each, the Maroons registered the largest winning margin in Origin history and scored their highest total via the eight tries to one display against a shell-shocked Blues outfit.

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow

July 17, 2015

During what was potentially Queensland's most significant snowfall in 30 years, thick snow blanketed parts of the Sunshine State with up to eight centimetres recorded by locals around Eukey and Stanthorpe on the Granite Belt.

Locals and tourists were determined not to miss the rare event, with some families braving the freezing cold to make snowmen at 2:00am.

Farewell SS Dicky

July 30, 2015

For more than 120 years, the SS Dicky has called the sands of the Sunshine Coast beach that took its name home.

However, that came to an end in mid-2015 when the visible remains of the wreckage were cut up and removed from Dicky Beach.

Earthquake rattles south-east Queensland

July 30, 2015

The earth moved for Queenslanders everywhere between the Fraser Coast and Gold Coast in late July when a magnitude-5.3 earthquake rattled the region.

It sparked a flood of calls to ABC Local Radio stations as well as an entire series of jokes and memes on social media.

Piggie the echidna stolen from Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary

August 1, 2015

In one of the more bizarre thefts of the year, Piggie, a four-year-old echidna, was snatched by two men from her enclosure at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary on the Gold Coast.

She was found safe and well in bushland outside the sanctuary days later and three men were eventually charged in relation to the theft.

School student 'dragged on ground', put in detention

August 8, 2015

Brisbane student Mojgan Shamsalipoor, 21, was months away from graduating at Yeronga State High School when she was forcibly removed from the Brisbane Immigration Transit Accommodation Centre in August and taken to a Darwin detention centre after a failed visa application.

It was a move that sparked rallies and even a stop-work at her school.

Catherine Holmes named Queensland's Chief Justice

September 8, 2015

More than two months after Tim Carmody's resignation, Queensland's new Chief Justice was named as Catherine Holmes.

Justice Holmes, who became the state's 19th chief justice, said she wanted to be a calming influence on the state's fractured court system.

Woman allegedly rammed off road, bashed by ex-partner

September 8, 2015

By September, domestic violence was blamed on 63 deaths in Australia.

One of those deaths was Tara Brown, who was allegedly killed by her ex-partner and former Bandido member Lionel Patea in September. Months later, he was committed to stand trial for her murder.

Man kills estranged wife before shooting himself on Gold Coast

September 10, 2015

The Gold Coast was shocked by a second case of domestic violence in as many days when Maryborough woman Karina Lock, 49, was shot in the head by her 57-year-old estranged husband Stephen Lock in front of diners at the Helensvale McDonald's.

She died at the scene and no-one else was physically injured. The man was taken to hospital with a self-inflicted gunshot wound but died the next day.

'Sinkhole' swallows cars, caravan at campsite

September 27, 2015

Dozens of campers had a trip to remember and not for the right reasons when the ground opened up beneath them and swallowed their belongings and vehicles at a popular camping spot near Rainbow Beach late in September.

About 200 metres of beachfront and 50 metres of a popular campground at Inskip Point gave way late one Saturday evening, causing a 7.5-metre-deep cavity.

North Queensland Cowboys claim first NRL premiership

October 4, 2015

North Queensland Cowboys' crusade for the NRL Premiership ended in triumphant in early October after Johnathan Thurston kicked a golden-point field goal to win 17-16 against the Brisbane Broncos.

Jubilation at the Cowboys' home town of Townsville was instance, and the team was given a heroes' welcome home just days later with thousands of fans waiting to greet the team at Townsville Airport and later at the team's home ground.

Campbell Newman launches biography

October 7, 2015

Campbell Newman's return to the public eye almost eight months out of the state's top job came in early October when he launched his biography - but not everyone was lining up to read it.

A handful of bookshops around the country refused to stock his story in response to one of Mr Newman's first acts as premier in 2012, when he scrapped the Premier's Literary Award, a symbolic move to show that he would lead a frugal government.

Storms roll through drought-stricken outback Queensland

October 31, 2015

Some of Queensland's most parched regions received a well-welcomed lifeline in the form on more than 100 millimetres of rain in late October.

In the 24 hours to Sunday, November 1, Alpha, which was drought declared in 2013, received 107 millimetres of rain, Barcaldine 105mm, Mungallala 78mm and Longreach 20mm, and Mount Isa 15mm.

Body of missing girl found on banks of Gold Coast river

November 5, 2015

The remains of what would later be identified as the body of missing 12-year-old Tiahleigh Palmer were found by fishermen on the banks of the Pimpama River.

Tiahleigh was reported missing almost a week earlier on October 30.

Jo-Ann Miller loses police portfolio, resigns from Cabinet

December 3, 2015

The year ended on a low for Labor MP Jo-Ann Miller, who was stripped of the Police and Emergency Services portfolio after being severely criticised in an ethics committee report.

A day later, she quit cabinet all together, which was reshuffled and expanded later that week.

Gerard Baden-Clay's murder conviction downgraded to manslaughter

December 7, 2015

The law was labelled "an arse" by Acting Federal Justice Minister Peter Dutton after Gerard Baden-Clay's murder conviction for killing his wife Allison was downgraded to manslaughter in early December.

Baden-Clay, a former Brisbane real estate agent, was convicted in 2014 of the murder of his wife but the finding was set aside this week when the Court of Appeal found there was not enough evidence to prove he intended to kill the mother of three in 2012.

Source:  ABC News

Leave a Reply

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