Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said she was disappointed Redlands was not successful in its spirited campaign to bring the ex-HMAS Tobruk to Straddie, however congratulated Wide Bay on their win.
“This is particularly disheartening given the urgent need for a transition out of mining to other industries at Straddie by 2019. Scuttling this ship would have been a perfect opportunity for the state and federal governments to get behind Redlands to support local jobs and tourism, especially given the short timeframe and inadequate state funding to support a realistic economic transition on North Stradbroke Island.
“Redlands was commended on its expression of interest to the State Government to have the ship scuttled in the waters off North Stradbroke Island, however it is understood that the economic impact to our region was not considered to be as significant as that for other regions competing for the vessel.
“I would like to congratulate the Wide Bay Region and the Bundaberg and Fraser Coast areas in particular on being named the successful site. It’s a significant achievement that the ex-warship will be coming to Queensland. The Redlands would like to work with Wide Bay, as well as the Sunshine Coast who has the ex-HMAS Brisbane, to ensure promotion of all of Queensland, including Straddie, as a world-class diving destination.
“While our hopes might be sunk on this occasion, we will not give up on bringing economic opportunities to our city including looking for other vessels to sink to enhance diving tourism. We gave it a good fight and I am sure gave those selecting the resting spot for this ship something to think about.
“I would like to thank those community members across the Redlands and further who threw their support and creativity behind our campaign to Sink Tobruk for Straddie.”