Our Redlands Story Competition runner-up: My environmental growth together with the beautiful Redlands (Barbara Bradford)

As a young 7 yo child from a family of 8, we lived on a small property at Belmont and we
would regularly travel to the Redlands for picnics and swimming at many places including Tingalpa Creek Capalaba (near the Greyhound grounds), Wellington Point and Thompsons Beach Victoria Point.

The drives through the Redlands with all the farms growing vegetables from the rich soils were what I remembered the most from those early years of the Redlands at that time.

These areas included farms at Wellington Point, Ormiston, Cleveland, Victoria Point, Redland Bay, the strawberry farms were the most favoured of course.

Our Dad & Mum loved showing our extended family to these areas when they came down to visit from Toowoomba and Texas and then shout us a lemon squash at the Grand View Hotel if we were lucky or fish and chips at Cleveland Point looking out at the vast ocean. Walks on the jetty next to Ye Olde Court House Restaurant and Wellington Point jetty out to King Island at low tide was always a must and most enjoyable.

Mum, Dad and the visitors especially loved the Moreton Bay Figs, and Jacarandas that lined many streets.

On many a Friday night we had fish and chips at Wellington Point, as it was the only take away meal I believe was on offer, to us anyway!!

At 17 I was a regular visitor to Coochiemudlo Island with my friend whose Parents had retired there, and since have been lucky enough to visit nearly all of the Islands, either by private boat, ferry/barge – then hiking, biking, snorkeling and rowing.

In 1977 as a 19yo I came to live at Alexandra Hills with my Mum, her new Husband and my 2 brothers.  I have lived in the Redlands now for 40 years and only had 1 year living away and that was because as a young single female in my late 20’s I couldn’t afford to buy here, so went to the closest area I could afford, which happened to be in Logan.

I then began to travel to different parts of Australia and met people from many other Countries and started bringing them to the Redlands to showcase many of it’s assets, including the fantastic Koala population and how you could find and view them so easily in their natural setting.

In 1986 I met my Husband who also came to live at Alexandra Hills and after marrying we spent 2 more years there before moving to small acreage in Sheldon – 2 ½ acres which we were totally in awe of, both with the location and being able to afford it at the time.  We have been here 25 years and brought up 2 Sons who have a real affinity to this very beautiful bushland area with all of its wonderful natural inhabitants that they have learned so much from, along with us too, of course.

I love the outdoors and the many activities land and water based I have been fortunate to participate in right here in the Redlands.  We introduced our children to all of these activities as well and have enjoyed many a picnic in our own back yard and hiking and biking in the many Conservation Reserves such as – Wallaby Creek Bushland, Scribbly Gums, Ford Road, Bayview etc.  I have been an avid bushwalker all my life and to know there is still so much more for me to explore on the Islands and the mainland is just so fabulous and exciting.

While I have been extremely privileged to live on acreage most of my life and to witness the beauty of nature first hand I do believe it has been my duty to upkeep it and I have learned how to do this through great programs taught by passionate people who work in and for the Redlands.

Learning all about conservation of these wonderful assets of the Redlands along with my new activities since the 2000’s which have been jogging and birding has come to enhance my appreciation and determination to pass on the education I have been given.

With a total 51 years of exploring this great area I really can’t picture myself living anywhere else, the fact that Redlands can be so peaceful, beautiful and diverse which brings with it an abundance of wildlife from the birds and animals of the bush to the wondrous creatures of the ocean and surrounds, it has been and still is an ongoing education on how to live and respect all the Redlands has to offer.

I love Redlands!!

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