Im a bit confused about the difference in opinion of Russell Island?

have comments or reviews been deleted ??? which is true is there a lot of drug use on the island???im hoping to relocate with my 6 children from country nsw i have high school aged children as well as primary and was looking for clean peaceful lifestyle hmmm now not so sure the comments and reviews fluctuate between a brilliant place to be to the complete opposite and i feel your describing the slums of some inner city housing commission development... i just don't understand how the reviews can be so different help plse.
Question asked via Homely.com.au The opinions expressed here are those of the individual and not those of Ray White.
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hk3 Feb 28, 2018
From what i gather, most of the comments saying the Island/s are 'full of druggies', seem to be written by conservative "ACA watching oldies", who seemingly have nothing better to do with their lives than to complain, bag out others, gossip, live in fear, etc.. Yes, people do drugs on Russell Island..don't they everywhere? Mostly 'pot', from my observations. Last i heard 50+% of the Australian adult population had smoked pot, what's the big deal? I never had any 'trouble' from someone 'stoned' abusing me or anything.

I lived on Russell for around 5 years, and left due to a family illness. I felt safer than most anywhere else i've lived in my life, and i've lived in a lot of different area's. I didn't observe crime. Sure there's gonna be some 'bad' people & crime. But, no more than the 'average', in my opinion.

At the end of the day, whether you're living on Russell, Macleay etc.. you're living in a country town of a few thousand people surrounded by water. So, there's gonna be more gossip, facial recognition etc, than a more anonymous life living in a large city. That's gonna be good or bad, depending on your own interpretation.

From my observations, there's a fair few people who 'come and go'. Live there for a couple years, get bored etc. and move on. If you like your shopping malls, going out to different cafe's, restaus etc.. this place is probably not for you (for the longer term, at least). There's lots of mozzies, as there always is when living near the water and vegetation.

To my mind, it's not a 'paradise' nor a 'hell hole', but a pretty good place to live - particularly is you prefer a 'quieter life', nature etc..
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88KATmando
88KATmando Dear hk3, well said! sorry you had to leave our islands, maybe you can come for a holiday or visit sometime - good luck with your family health issues
Feb 28, 2018
dd2
dd2 As a resident of Russell Island you are entitled to a Restricted Area Concession on your registration costs, if the vehicle is to be used almost exclusively on the islands.

The exception here, is that you are allowed to drive the vehicle on the mainland for servicing and repair purposes only, unless you obtain a permit beforehand.

The form you need to fill out for your Restricted Area Concession can be found online.

If you have just purchased a car on the islands, and wish to register the car under your name, you are exempt from obtaining a Safety Certificate or Roadworthy Certificate due to the fact that there are no licensed/registered inspection stations on the islands.

This does not mean you cant get your car inspected on the mainland if you wish, just that you dont have to. In the event that you do not wish to get a Safety Certificate, you need to do a Self Assessment of the vehicle. This basically says that you, to the best of your knowledge, think the car is safe to drive on the roads.

Yes its cheaper vehicle registration for island cars with no need for RWC.
Jan 27, 2019
lillian-d.t
lillian-d.t Appreciate your description as it sounds quite realistic...Thanks!
May 27, 2019
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mikev1 2yrs+
Just bought a block of land in Russel Island.

I am keen on knowing what's happening within the local area in terms of future development - what is the council's plan for RI for the coming 5 years?

Do they even have a plan or is everything off the cuff?

Any feedback would be great....or links to a few website would help also.
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88KATmando
88KATmando Rafferty's rules, is not far off, they keep selling land with not much planning for improving infrastructure or creating light industry or jobs over here. A local builder, may be able to help, re what is allowed, what has changed and what may change re development for the future. It appears that the local council, does not have a lot of clout, even members with the best of intentions, can not make much happen, when it comes to dealing with or representing the islands when speaking with the Qld Government, they get assurities and promises and then the goal posts are moved on us again. In the local rag today, NBN has now been put back by years for the SMBI's and also apparently in the just released SEQ draft report, the SMBI's are hardly mentioned, apparently we don't exist. It should not have to be up to the local community, alone, to try and improve these islands. We have been put in the too hard basket, it is easier to ignore or forget us than to address the problems the islands have always had. In the not too distant future, there will be an absolute social crises on these islands, then I would not like to be the government who will be in power at that time, as the horse got loose many years ago and it will cost a motza to fix it! What people may not know, is Bribie Island currently has a population of about 16,200, that is not much more than the SMBI's and they have had a bridge for years, not that I personally want a bridge, I think it would ruin the character of the islands, but if not a bridge, why don't we have the same investment in our islands? Frustrating and it is not good for people's state of minds to feel forgotten! let alone be ripped off by the unjust and unfair rates we have to pay!
2yrs+
tanyaj3
tanyaj3 Bribie has tourism. The SMBI's have housing commission and druggos. Why would they put money into it when the already get enough government funding via Centrelink. The SMBI people are an embarrassment to the Redlands. The Government should start with the small things first like teaching them how to wash clothes, brush their teeth, read and how to get a job + a drug education program would be handy.
2yrs+
fringedweller
fringedweller I am unsure I agree with tanyj3 on very much of what has been written. I know the SMBI pretty well and am not aware of any housing commission properties on any of the islands. Further, if you check the facts readily available from ABS, I think you might find that many parts of greater Brisbane have a considerably higher proportion of their population supported by welfare than the SMBI.

As to the SMBI people being an embarrassment to the Redlands, are we to assume you mean all of them? That is around 12000 people, a lot of embarrassing going on. I am particularly intrigued how you arrived at this, no doubt, very well thought through statement. How is this embarrassment manifested? Do the people of the Redlands cry a lot, do they lose sleep, suffer depression, develop ulcers, abuse their families? Hide behind the veil of anonymous forums dispensing feculent diatribe perhaps? Or is it just those in your circle of association that do this? The SMBI also have a generally lower crime rate than numerous mainland regions, particularly violent crimes. Sounds amazing for the great toothless unwashed doesnt it.

Personally, I think that before you make these sweeping generalisations from the anonymity of a forum, you should do some pretty basic research so people dont just dismiss your writings as the ramblings of a fool.. Not that anyone would think you a fool of course, would they? The People of the SouthernMoreton Bay Islands, on balance, would be much too polite to clearly state something which is so obvious, to nearly everyone.

FD
2yrs+
simone carroll
simone carroll Totally agree FD. We have lived here more than 10 years and have met some of the nicest and most intelligent people you will find anywhere!
2yrs+
gary-mcleang
gary-mcleang The SMBI is a beautiful place and yes there are some druggos but when they are caught by police and charged they are usually not allowed to return to the islands according to their bail conditions.
Police work with the real estate offices telling them not to renew any rental leases or give new lease for criminals on serious charges
Which forces them off the islands.
I recommend you rent here for 6 months to test the waters pun intended before you decide to stay permanently so good luck.
2yrs+
neilj5
neilj5 I live on russell island . I love the place . It's quiet and pretty . Sure there's idiots of all kind as every town has . But we have all the good too . Life is what you make it ,so May as well make it in paradise
Dec 21, 2017
88KATmando
88KATmando I have just re-read some of my earlier quotes, and if you were to ask me today, I could only say I am getting happier and happier here as time goes on. We are semi-retired and for the first time in our lives, we can have a lie down in the afternoon and don't feel guilty about it. We have wound down so much since moving to the islands nearly 5 years ago. When we first got here we were stressed about missing a ferry or such and an old local salty said, "calm down you won't grow a beard!" Compromises to be made, but that is for every individual to judge if they are willing to do that for the rewards of living in Paradise all on island time!
Feb 07, 2018
Dave Gosden
Dave Gosden I follow this instagram site, and it has lots of images of Russell Island https://instagram.com/russellisland.qld/ Also the Russell Island Ferry Terminal upgrade by State government now underway.
Dec 20, 2018
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dd2 Jan 27, 2019
So island life is not for everyone, like CBD high rise living is not for everyone.
Where else can you enjoy a Seachange & Treechange in one location with an affordable price tag and easy access to a capital city like Brisbane? Russell Island is unique and more people are starting to realize its unique charm.

Russell Island has a police station, IGA supermarket, butcher, post office, service station, Ambulance station (also with a dedicated ambulance ferry) bottle shop, veteranarian, a medical practice, pathologist, chemist, computer repair services, web-designers, hairdresser, bakery, newsagency, landscape/hire centre, Uber, Taxi, storage sheds, video hire, lawyer, library, two licensed clubs, large aquatic public pool, and four real estate offices.

The two licensed clubs, an RSL and the Russell Island Bowling Club, provide entertainment and bistro facilities most nights of the week.
A multi purpose community hall near the main wharf is available. The Bay Islands Community Centre on Jackson Rd is also a hub for community activities The Russell Island Community Resilience Centre includes sporting facilities, tennis and basketball courts, soccer field, emergency evacuation building and a community farm.

Water
The water supply for SMBI is piped across from North Stradbroke Island to north eastern tip of Russell Island. The supply is then piped via Karragarra Island to Lamb Island and then onto Macleay Island. The mainland water supply is connected to the SEQ water grid and therefore the risk of the water supply failing is extremely low.

Electricity
The electricity supply provided by Energex to the SMBI group and North Stradbroke Island comes via Russell Island. The supply originates on the mainland north of Cabbage Tree Point and crosses the Western Boating Channel, connecting to the southern end of Russell Island at Rocky Point, then continues north through the centre of Russell Island before branching off to service North Stradbroke Island and Karragarra Island.

This sequence of connections highlights the importance of Russell Island to the electricity supply for SMBI and North Stradbroke Island. A new substation has been built on Russell Island to assist in ensuring the power supply to Russell Island is more robust and with less power fluctuations.

Telecommunications
Landline access to North Stradbroke Island and SMBI is via a microwave link from the mainland to exchanges on the islands. The exchanges on North Stradbroke Island are located at each of the three townships of Dunwich, Amity Point and Point Lookout and for SMBI the exchanges are located on Russell and Macleay Islands

GARBAGE COLLECTION:
There are eight waste transfer stations in the Redlands:

Mainland: Birkdale and Redland Bay
Islands: Coochiemudlo, Karragarra, Lamb, Macleay, North Stradbroke and Russell Island.

Redland City Council provides a waste and recycling collection service to all domestic premises on Russell Island.
General waste - weekly collection
Recycled waste - fortnightly collection

MAINLAND PARKING
(Source: https://www.redland.qld.gov.au/info/20152/parking_in_the_redlands/278/parking_at_weinam_creek )
In June 2018, Council confirmed its commitment to the rejuvenation of the Weinam Creek Transport Hub, announcing plans to develop the site to provide the community infrastructure that the area requires. Council's proposed master plan which will be delivered in stages, will transform the waterfront of Redland Bay, improve the usability of the transport hub, attract visitors, create jobs and drive economic development in the area.

The master plan will include:

More open space
New pedestrian and cycle ways
Rejuvenation of existing parkland
More car parks
Improved drop off and storage facilities for island residents and visitors
A new boat ramp to separate emergency and public access
A mix of residential and retail spaces including cafes, restaurants and potential for a medical precinct.

CURRENT COUNCIL WORKS ON RUSSELL ISLAND ( source:https://www.redland.qld.gov.au/WorksUpdate )
Russell Island - PDG-43611 -
Pavement and Seating Canaipa Point Park, Russell Island
Redland City Council Internal Construction Crews and Contractors will be upgrading Caniapa Point Park, Russell Island. These works will involve installing a reinforced concrete slab, Aria mix and match bench seat, turf and associated works.

Russell Island - PDG-80920-1 -
SMBI Green Seal Program Russell Island

Redland City Council Internal Construction Crews and Contractors will be upgrading various streets on Russell Island. These works will involve the installation of gravel pavement and the installation of two coat bitumen seal. The following streets are to be sealed: Aquamarine Avenue from Opal Court Minjerriba Road Venus Court from Aquamarine Avenue to end Opal Court from Aquamarine Avenue to end Gem Street from Opal Court to Jasper Street Neptune Street from Jasper Street to Aquamarine Avenue Ferry Court from Minjerriba Rd to End Satton Street from Kings Road to 6/10 Satton Street Canna Street from Satton Street to Oaklea Street Meadstone Street from Canna Street to 4 Meadstone Street Oaklea Street from Kings Road to Waterlea Street Waterlea Street from Oaklea Street to Elcon Street Goolagong Street from Fern Terrace to Titala Street Illagona Street from Fern Terrace to Titala Street

EMERGENCY AND MEDICAL SERVICES
Russell Island Ambulance
High Street Russell Island
000

Fire & Rescue
Russell Island
0408 077 188

Police
Russell Island
28 High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1244

Russell Island Medical Services
2 Alison Crescent
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1151

Russell Island Veterinary Services
High Street Russell Island
0408 981 531

TRANSPORT
Bay Islands
Transit
8 Outlook Crescent
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1145

Stradbroke Ferries
1 Weinam Street
Redland Bay
(07) 3488 5300

Bay Island Carriers
Redland Bay
(07) 3206 8633

Russell Island
Taxi Service
0408 785 218
0408 785 555

Russell Island Style Uber
(07) 3409 2350
0410710759

Russell Island Taxi Charter & Tours
(07) 3409 1670

FOOD OUTLETS
IGA Russell Island
18 Jasper St
Russell Island
(07) 3409 2777
0408 785 218

Black Pearl Caf
29 High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 2211

Russell Island Bakery
29 High Street Russell Island
(07) 3409 2006

Bay Island Meats Russell Island
Shopping Centre
High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1657

Russell Island
RSL Sub Branch
9 Anzac Drive
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1372

Russell Island Bowls Club
59 Jackson Road
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1330

GENERAL SERVICES
Council Depot Russell Island
6 Cambridge Street Russell Island
(07) 3829 8633)

Russell Island State School
38 64 High Street Russell Island
(07) 3400 9333

Russell Island Community Centre
55 Jackson Road Russell Island
(07) 3409 1177

YMCA Russell Island Pool
High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1503

Russell Island Library
26 High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1684

Russell Island Recreation Hall
1 Alison Crescent
Russell Island
(07) 3409 2238
(07) 3829 8999

Post Office
69 High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1910

Bendigo Bank
6/29 39 High Street
High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1366

Bay Islands Excavations
245 Centre rd
Russell Island
(07) 3409 2655

Andy Hire
83 High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1996

Sparta Tree Services
(07) 3409 2418

SERVICE STATIONS
Russell Island
Service Station
73 High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1269

ACCOMMODATION
Ray White Russell Island
13 High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 2000

Russell Island Motor Inn
20 High Street
Russell Island
(07) 3409 1399
0459 465 380

The Love Shack
Russell Island
0415 577 243

Find out more:
https://www.instagram.com/russellisland.qld/
https://www.bayislandsinfo.com/the-bay-islands/russell-island/
http://www.redlandsdisasterplan.com.au/russell-island/
https://www.russellisland.com.au/dir
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Nessa -
Nessa - Thankyou, sensational info
Feb 13, 2019
straddym
straddym This a great Referenced article of Island infrastructure. Educated people read & I applaud you for your time compiling this.
Remember people, when you think of a Question, 1st search the Primary source, then READ, if that fails post your Question & expect to READ :)
Aug 11, 2019
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janel6 2yrs+
I moved 2 years ago. Not long after my son got peer grop pressured into smoking pot. My daughter and younger son bullied at the local primary school. Your children will be rubbing shoulders with vile scum and come home telling you all about smoking meth etc. Not kidding. I am still stuck here as i moved as i needed a break from high rent but it nearly cost me dearly with addiction medicine specialist. Psychologist for my son due to the extreme bullying. 2 of my kids been punched in the face at school. Now they all in private schools. The local high school is also feral too. Island kids are looked down on so your kids become double disadvantaged. People are very clicky here too, old people retiree crowd/ dole bludgers and vast number on disability support pension/ hippy alternative dreadlock type and a few normal working descent looking people. Nearly everyone on the ferry smells of stale sweat, alcohol cigarretes or BO its vile. I have a lovely house i rent on the water and only 1-2 good friends. The bogan creepy men will come in droves and try befriend you to creep their way in. Lots of domestic violence, lots of druggies, lots of morbidly obese people. Ive told my family not to be too friendly with the islanders as the kids pick up bad habits like swearing and just being extra rude. My advice is think twice especially with a big family n lots of kids as they are the ones who bear the brunt of it. Many like to settle arguments with their fists not like grown adults. Its a jungle out there. Read H G Wells book the island of Dr moreau.... thats my analogy of the place. Creature with 2 heads roaming around haha. Its a shame as it really is lovely but the old grumpys and ferals ruin it. Mozzies are bad and u see a lot of people all scabbed up with sores from picking at them and midge bites. Also your leather and clothes keeping them mold free is a constant hassle. It goes nuts especially if you rent a crappy house that is already moist / damp. My son is scarred for life from the school. Needs closing down the teachers are there as a punishment or a rookie posting. Its a white knuckle ride with water views. Enter at own risk. My advice keep yourself to yourself. People appear helpful but they will tap you on the shoulder later for a favour 3 fold to be returned.
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fringedweller
fringedweller Wow! Sorry to hear you found it so dreadfully bad here Janel6. Must have been a most traumatic life experience for you and your family to say the least. I imagine it would have been hard to move here, find you got it so wrong then move away again. I guess you didn't spend that much time in such an awful place, just enough to find it was so unbelievably dreadful I guess. I suppose nobody could be silly enough to put themselves and their family through such torture for any longer than absolutely necessary.

For us, we really like it here, have some great friends, oddly, they are not the druggies, dole bludgers, smelly people, or scab ridden scum you seem to find so prevalent in your social circle. Our neighbours have great kids who attend the local school and seem like very well adjusted young people to me, maybe they suffer multiple personality disorder and hide it well, but I am not seeing it. What is really strange is that their parents both work and don't seem to stink or appear covered in scabs. In fact, they take care of our house when we are away, without us asking. We also employ young people on Russell on occasion, and in nearly all cases have found good workers and nice people.

So, sorry you had to leave and didn't find our little corner of paradise the same way we did. I hope you found whatever it is you are seeking.

FD
2yrs+
huej
huej Yeah. Paranoia is a real affliction.
2yrs+
leec11
leec11 wow !!!! Janel6 I think the fact you stated you have no friends says it all , keep running but eventually you will just have to change and be a nice person or people will always push you aside , sounds like you ran away to the islands to begin with but made no effort to change your crappy attitude :/ we all have to grow up one day and realise that sometimes we are the problem that we tell everyone is other people , take s good look at yourself and you might not like what you see , !!!! Its impossible that every single person on the islands is like what your saying , you are jaded and you need to grow up and stop thinking your better than everyone else !!!!!
Jan 08, 2019
stevej16
stevej16 Yep very true I lived on that island for 7 years ...addicts everywhere... alcoholics lining up at the bottle shop an hour before it opens yes their are alot of good people live their but sadly the scumbags are extremely abundant I moved to coochiemudlo island so much better a nice quieter island and aslot less druggie losers...do not move to Russell island..as stated I was there for 7 years I no what I'm talking about.... look into coochiemudlo island .
Jun 25, 2019
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BrianFisher 2yrs+
I've just moved from Mid north coast nsw.

Wanted to get up around Brisbane/Gold Coast area. Starting over.

Land is super cheap. About 400 blocks available on Russell, McLeay and Lamb island. Buyers market. All prices are negotiable. People have bought with starry eyes and want out. if ever a bridge is built, will see significant capital gain. No sign of bridge being built anytime soon and some don't want a bridge as they believe it will spoil the island. Been waiting 40 years so far for promise of a bridge.

I expect to get a capital gain doing owner builder.

Island is very peaceful, and on a whole people very friendly and helpful. Very small element of drugs.

Access via ferries both vehicle and passenger. Very staff orientated. Not very customer friendly. Drive off and leave you stranded when you arrive early or on time.

Last vehicle ferry's 6pm.

$50 each way. Most people leave a cat on main land and use ferries.
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Dave Gosden
Dave Gosden Passenger Ferry Prices are great.
Adult Gocard $2.60 -$3.25
Concession Gocard $1.30 - $1.63
https://www.bayislandsinfo.com/a-note-about-fares/
I follow this instagram site, and it has lots of images of Russell Island https://instagram.com/russellisland.qld/ Also the Russell Island Ferry Terminal upgrade by State government now underway.
Dec 20, 2018
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Russell Island Oct 13, 2019
Russell Island is booming on the Brisbane Bayside. Checkout these amazing news items

The Great Day Out http://bit.ly/RedlandCoastSouthernIslands
https://facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=1640870036016883&id=103832643053971

"Buy land for the price of a holiday:
https://m.gladstoneobserver.com.au/news/buy-land-for-the-price-of-a-holiday/3837053/

"Four islands in southern Moreton Bay set to receive ferry terminal upgrades in government deal"
http://www.couriermail.com.au/questnews/redlands/news-story/3af6e77afdc58e84edc802b758803aff

7 News Brisbane https://facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=2596083143737855&id=130736376939223

Brisbane Property Investor https://qldpropertyinvestor.com.au/queensland-to-rank-among-best-state-markets-in-2019/

"It is cheaper to buy than rent in this south east Queensland island paradise"
https://www.realestate.com.au/news/it-is-cheaper-to-buy-than-rent-in-this-south-east-queensland-island-paradise/

Get Inspired at https://www.instagram.com/russellisland.qld/

And from last year "Best bargain suburbs for buyers in 2018"
https://www.realestate.com.au/news/best-bargain-suburbs-for-buyers-2018/
1 vote
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debbief5 Jul 27, 2019
We are rate payers from Russell Island we want a bridge built to help the whole community it cost$125.00 for one way over & back to Russell Island in a car that is ridiculous who can afford that we would be happy to pay for a toll on the bridge to pay for it its time the government steps in to stop the groups who own the barges ect from stopping this from happening its up to the rate payers not the groups they have deciding decisions for Russell Island what is going on ?the council is ripping us all off for the price of rates
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88KATmando
88KATmando Sorry been here 6 years, DO NOT WANT A BRIDGE, the islands will become just another suburb of the Redlands, just the next suburbs after Redland Bay, it will spoil the community feel and the uniqueness of arriving home via ferry. Ok values will probably go up, but we came here for a reason, to get away from the madness of the mainland, for the fauna, not to make money, if you EXPECT capital gain, go elsewhere!
Aug 11, 2019
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Dave Gosden Dec 22, 2018
Here is the new Sealink passenger Ferry pricing 2018 for adults $2.65 -$3.20 each way and for concession holders $1.30 -$1.65 each way. REFERENCE https://www.bayislandsinfo.com/a-note-about-fares/
Passenger Ferry Schedule here: REFERENCE https://jp.translink.com.au/plan-your-journey/timetables/ferry/t/southern-moreton-bay-island-ferry/
Vehicle Barge Ferry: Prices effective until 31st March 2019, For travel to Karragarra, Macleay, Lamb and Russell Islands, To / From Redland Bay One Way Price: Car, 4WD, Ute (up to 5.4m long and 2.0m wide) $62.00 Residents ($52.00 ) REFERENCE
https://www.stradbrokeferries.com.au/pricing/southern-moreton-bay-island-ferry-price-list
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Drew Heigs Aug 07, 2018
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conk2 Jul 30, 2018
I'm far from a conservative type of person and not a sensationalist but there's definitely a disproportional amount of hard drug abuse and problematic mental health issues on Russell Island.

It shouldn't stop you from considering buying on the island - it's not dangerous and you won't be fearing for your life. But just know that you'll encounter a number of people who it'd be best to avoid.

If you're hoping for a luxury getaway you won't find it on Russell Island but it still has its perks.
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jj7 2yrs+
If Mozzies & Midges are a problem
Please consider that Cat Nip essential oil is 10 to 100 times stronger than deet.
Less toxic & will make your cat happy too!
Hey I'm thinking about moving to Russel or Macleay Island & have appreciated reading everyone's point of view. I'll definitely rent first!
Thanks everyone.
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chloez2 2yrs+
I was born on the island and have grown up there, still currently here. Honestly, it is or was great when you are child because you have so much bushland and places to explore and see but once you become a teen it becomes quite difficult with travelling and being entertained (unless you are a boating family) but yeah the people over the past few year coming to Russell have made it worse and yes there is drug and crime but honestly its everywhere and especially growing up here you learn who to stay away from and how to politely deal with certain people. It is also very hard to move off because the market isn't always that great. If you are coming from NSW I reccomend for you to stay there or move some place else, especially for your teens and the lifestyle of NSW. This is just my personal experience and like I said as a child great fun, mud, trees, bush, sailing and island living but it does get harder the longer you stay. It may change but this moment in time its not th greatest. Hope this helped.
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cathic 2yrs+
I moved here from Melbourne nearly two years ago and it has fulfilled every expectation and more for my family. Some comments here are very positive and others very negative simply because everyone's experience differs. Like yourself, I believed Russell Is to be a 'rough' island with lots of crime, simply from what I read on blogs before moving here and certainly there is an element of that (as there was down south as well and in many mainland suburbs). I think life is like a cup of tea, it's how you make it. If your primary motivation for moving here is for the cheap housing/rent you may be disappointed when you realise the challenges of island living (and there are quite a few). If you're here because it has been your lifelong dream to live on an island then like myself, you will MAKE it work!

If, as you say, you are seeking a clean, peaceful lifestyle then I would choose Macleay or Lamb. Karragarra is lovely too but no amenities and with a family you will most likely appreciate even a basic kiosk/general store (although Woollies do deliver weekly and you can travel inter-island 'free' by ferry to Russell or Macleay which both have jetty accessible supermarkets).

I cannot speak for the local primary school as my child started mid year 7, but I would choose your high school very carefully. Moving kids anywhere is a monumental disruption to their lives, let alone interstate and/or to an island. I chose a high school at Victoria Point as I was advised most of the island kids went there. Regret it terribly now (now when he has made friends and refuses to let me move him again). I fear it marked the end of any academic aspirations I had for what had always been a 'high end of average' achieving student. I thought it was important to put him in a school where his peers went so they could socialise on weekends. I thought it important as I perceived us being far more isolated that in truth we are. But I am told there are kids who do quite well there, if they WANT to. In my experience of moving teenagers, often their social concerns become far more important than their academic goals.

Other challenges include mainland shopping. You either need to use public transport (most residents buy shopping jeeps or granny trolleys as we called them as kids to make easier) or ideally you have a car permanently parked on the mainland. Parking costs on average $25 p/w but you will at least get cheaper rego on your island car - known as 'Island Reg'. You WILL need an island car unless you are living close to the jetty where some shops also are. There is no island public transport (apart from a primary school bus on Russell I believe). However, there are taxis, but only on Macleay and Russell. Lamb has neither but is only small (2kms walk worst case scenario) and Karragarra I'm not sure of but think they have neither too. Council have a big carpark at Redland Bay ferry terminal with 2+ years waiting lists but you can put your name down on lists for private homes' onsite parking as well. My name has been on council parking waiting list for nearly two years but my husband found two private, SECURE (backyards with locked gates) carparks in just one hour of walking around Redland Bay.

Depending on where you live on any island the mozzie/midges can be a huge challenge. Best advice for itching is heat. Spoon in hot water or even better, the hairdryer as hot as you can stand for 30-45 seconds without burning yourself of course! Disperses histamines and will give 6 hours or so relief. After 6 month/1 year you will start to develop some immunity and old timers here seem unbothered by them. Waterfront properties, or those near reserves/swampland appear to be the worst infested areas. My son and I both contracted Ross River fever in less than a year of moving here, BUT, this could have happened anywhere in Queensland to be fair and even down south these days. Of course statistically, the chances were greater here. Council do treat for mosquitoes but not sure its all that effective and lately they are worse than they have ever been I am told and low Deet percentage repellants seem to be ineffective although personally I find Bushmans to work if you slather yourself in it. Expensive and nasty stuff to be covering kids in. But if you love it here you will find a way to beat them! Clean up all water reservoirs around your home, put in BugVac type contraptions with attractants, dig out water holding plants like Bromediads and plant mozzie repelling plants everywhere eg. lavender, rosemary, marigolds etc. Research it. Google will be your best friend living on the SMBI and you will learn to rely on online shopping where ever you can.

If I were you I would probably choose Macleay as it has supermarket, skate park, medical/dental facilities, pharmacy, an arts centre, restaurants, caf, clubs etc. Macleay feels a little more like suburbia in some ways but that might just make your life easier.

Lamb is very quiet with mostly retirees and probably less than 50 kids of varying ages and only amenities are a club and basic kiosk/general store which also does typical caf meals. Nothing really for kids unless they like fishing but they just jump on a ferry and go to other islands to catch up with friends or Victoria Point for cinemas/shops.

Russell would definitely have the largest percentage of drug/unemployment problems but there would be minor drug/unemployment issues on all islands probably as there is everywhere these day. It has shops, two supermarkets, primary school, medical facilities (inc heart monitoring equipment), pharmacy, Arts centre and public swimming pool. There is definitely a larger percentage of tough kids but it also a larger island and there are tonnes of really lovely people there too. Nevertheless, given your particular circumstances Russell would be my last pick.

Karragarra has no amenities, no public transport and I'm not even sure they have a taxi. Not many kids either. I don't know all that much about 'Karra'. Tiny island. Lots of greenies/environmentalist and alternate living types I think. But they do have a lovely sandy beach which the kids ferry over to to swim with minimal inconvenience. They quickly become quite independent with inter-island ferry travel and for the most part it's pretty safe I feel.

It does cost a little more to live on SMBI and be warned, depending on how far away you work from Redland Bay it could be tricky finding that work/life balance as you'd need to add 20 mins ferry travel time plus the time it takes you to get to the ferry on your island and time to walk from the jetty to your carpark on the mainland. Employment on the islands is mostly non-existent so you will no doubt have to work on the mainland unless you are one of the lucky ones with some kind of passive income or you can work from home. Ferries start around 4.30am until around midnight and run pretty regularly during the day but less frequently into the evening and stop around midnight so you'd be wise to check out ferry timetables (bayislandtransit.com.au). To bring your car over from mainland on the barge (vehicle ferry) is not cheap, around $100 return and approx. $50 inter-island (barge timetable - www.stradbrokeferries.com.au). On the plus side inter-island travel on the passenger ferries is free for island residents, which is great for the kids or for grocery shopping. Most establishments that are not within walking distance from ferries will offer some kind of jetty pickup and most clubs have courtesy buses otherwise they would lose the business of other islands.

In a nutshell, you can make anything work for you if you want it bad enough. Everyone's experience is different as I say and much of peoples' perception of living here depends on the lens through which you they are looking. So if it's just about cheap housing/rent - forget it. You will lose the benefit of some of those savings with additional cost of living expenses. But if your lifelong dream was to live on an island or wake up to a water view and you can afford a waterfront property then you have found an affordable paradise! Choose your property carefully, there is a smorgasbord of great properties here. Ideally rent a property you are interested in for a week prior to deciding to buy, or at least rent one nearby. Many properties are available for short term rental. And ideally rent outside of holiday times so you get a real taste of the neighbourhood the way it is mostly. Talk to your neighbours. They'll tell you what's right/wrong with the neighbourhood. Most people are friendly and helpful. You say you come from country NSW so you already know what small community living is like with its pros and cons. Simple things become big things. A big day out might be a local market event. Its for those wanting to slow the pace down and wanting a quiet, simple life. You will make friends quickly but ideally not too quickly. Many of those friendships end in tears and unpleasantness. Take your time. I think a lot of 'misfits' are drawn to island living and I mean that in a positive way. I consider myself one of them. People who want to distance themselves from the 'establishment' or those who don't 'fit' neatly into mainstream life. Makes for some very interesting characters. You will learn quickly living here to never judge a book by its cover. People you might give a wide berth to in suburbia often turn out to have the biggest hearts. I also see many people jump onto committees only to leave disgruntled later and feel they can no longer attend those meetings or frequent those establishments. However, I have presumed you will be buying. If you are renting the same advice applies. If you like boating or are a creative type you will no doubt love it here. Lots of boaties/fishing enthusiasts, artists, writers, poets and musicians are drawn here.

I hope this gives you some insight. I have tried to be as objective as I can and wish I had some of this information before I moved here. Not that it would have made any difference. I was coming here from the moment I learned of it and like many others say to me, I was 'drawn' here. I just love island living, despite its adversity and challenges. I love all the quirky personalities, the near perfect weather, the plethora of beautiful birdlife, the peace and beauty abound and the pristine waters and they will probably have to drag me kicking and screaming off to the old people's home to get me out of here. But its not for all. Some will see mangroves, mozzies and mud and some will see paradise. Come visit :)

Good luck with your decisions whatever they may be!
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tinaf3
tinaf3 How do you find private car parking on the mainland. Council told me 5 year wait
2yrs+
cathic
cathic Take a walk around Redland Bay, people often have signs on their gates/fences. Even if there aren't any parks available put your name on waiting lists, people come and go regularly on these islands and spots come up periodically.
2yrs+
hk3
hk3 The 'lack of infrastructure'..was a big part of the reason i moved there. If you want infrastructure, there's plenty of options to live in the burbs of Brissie, Bribie or wherever..
May 14, 2018
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88KATmando 2yrs+
Even people who live on Russell and all the SMBI's for that matter, could probably give you a different answer on a different day. Overall, beautiful lifestyle living out here, (I own and live on Lamb and also own a block on Russell) but you have to be flexible, be willing to put up with ferry travel and services, expensive vehicular barge travel, a Redland City council who should be ashamed of themselves, they are improving, but since time immemorial they have treated all the bay island residants and owners with distain, we are treated like second class citizens and often overlooked and forgotten, even though as Splinter says we pay more for our rates! They should be putting in place, as priorities, getting eco tourism up on the islands and putting in place infrastructure which supports any tourism based business, e.g. B & B's, restaurants, cafes, and perhaps even someone could be supported to set up a caravan or camping site with good facilities. Also council and State government need to encourage small manufactures and companies to set up on the islands as island employment is just about none existent and it would make a lot of families a lot happier to have their bread winners home more by being able to work on the islands, rather than spending many of their waking hours travelling! This all sounds negative, but I love living on the SMBI's, it is so peaceful, most people wave, some help out even and you only have to look out over that water to know you have made the right choice!
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Pattieone 2yrs+
If you are looking for a clean, peaceful lifestyle, why don't you consider Bribie Island. It's a gorgeous place with still water on one side and surf beach on the other. It has 2 primary schools and a high school. It's 20minutes to the Bruce Hwy and you don't have to bother with ferries or your own tinny as the island is bridged. Woollies, Maccas, Hotels, coffee shops etc abound and it's just so scenic. Hope things work out for you.
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cin85
cin85 I have just moved to this island like to say have came across some pretty rude people at the school an whome work at the local pool my children have started at the school we are use to kids being friendly an not to much bullying but since being hear first day kids punched my daughter in the face an have been called rasist names an told by other kids they were going to kill them was hoping that this might have been a nice new start for me an the kids but have a bad taste already an so soon very sad
2yrs+
amym11
amym11 I moved to Russell island nearly four years ago and it nearly destroyed my family. This place is riddled with crime. Don't move here.
2yrs+
fringedweller
fringedweller I have lived in the SMBI for several years and have invested here. It took a couple of months of uncertainty before I started to like the place but it is clearly my home now and I cant imagine leaving any time soon. I would also recommend people rent here if they are uncertain. As to the crime rate, go ask the local police. Apart from domestics, th crime rate is pretty low here compared to the mainland.
FD
2yrs+
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budgie69 2yrs+
I agree with the other posters - there is a lot of drug use and a lot of bogans/ferals and the problems that brings. I have both lived on the Island and invested, so know both sides of the coin. As the others have suggested, if you are still really keen you should rent on the island to see what it is really like before you buy.
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james31 2yrs+
Yes it's true there is a lot of housing commision type dwellings popping up all the time.... but we are trying to get rid of them. Just rent and make sure you want to stay before you commit by buying. That way we don't end up with more cheap rentals, please don't buy then leave another house that ends up rented to whoever the realestates choose..... they are not very selective......and I think they might forget to do the 6 mths inspections by the looks some rentals........thanks.
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dd2 Jan 29, 2019
Please note Queensland rates include all water supply and usage costs.

See 2019 quarterly rates notice below for Redland City Council for 690m2 block with 3 bedroom home Russell Island 4184.

Redland City Council Charges & Rebates
General Rate Category 2a Min $273.25
Rural Fire Brigade Special Charge $5.00
Environment Charge $28.89
Landfill Remediation Charge $10.97
Redland City SES Administration Charge $1.75
Utility Charges
240Lt Waste / Recycle (Island) $102.35
State Government Charges & Rebates
Emergency Management Levy – Class E Group 2 $26.65
Local Government Distribution and Retail Price
Water fixed access charge $ 65.90
Water Consumption - Residential $ 11.21
State Bulk Water Price
Bulk Water Consumption $ 52.21
Total Water and Wastewater Charges $ 129.32

Hope this helps. Vote for this so others can read it on this long thread.
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Nessa -
Nessa - Thankyou so much. Very Informative. So on top of your mortgage, is this all you pay annually
Feb 13, 2019
dd2
dd2 Yes this is, note that above is quarterly rates notice breakdown (every 3 months)
Feb 13, 2019
Nessa -
Nessa - Thank you dd2
Feb 14, 2019
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Dave Gosden Dec 20, 2018
Passenger Ferry Prices are great.

Adult Gocard $2.60 -$3.25
Concession Gocard $1.30 - $1.63
https://www.bayislandsinfo.com/a-note-about-fares/

I follow this instagram site, and it has lots of images of Russell Island https://instagram.com/russellisland.qld/ Also the Russell Island Ferry Terminal upgrade by State government now underway.
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Dave Gosden Aug 24, 2018
Need transport? Russell Island Uber Style
Can be your Transport and Personal Driver..

-Quick and affordable
-Authorised by Uber to accept bookings by landline phone and app.
-Now offering GoCatch app. Get you first ride to value of $15 free! Or Take $5 off each of your next 3 rides at GoCatch. Use coupon code GOAUSSIE to redeem offer. (Conditions Apply)

*Luxury Dodge SUV.
*Leather reclining seats.
*Tinted Windows.
*Climate control + Hypoallergenic
*Full commercual insurance.
*QLD accredited driver.
*Built in child minder seat.
*30% cheaper than taxi.

Matt
3409 2350
0410710759

https://www.bayislandsinfo.com/businesses/russell-island-uber-style/
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Drew Heigs Aug 07, 2018
Any comments / advise on Internet services for home business? Reliable and affordable?
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It's best to purchase in the middle to the bottom of the island closer to sandy beach as there are very few renters that far away from town. Like anywhere the further out of town you are, the quieter it is...I currently have a level cleared block for sale which has been soil tested cleared and surveyed if interested its 25k plus costs...contact meg70@y7mail.com..
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chrism29 2yrs+
i have lived on the island for seven years now. in that time the island has continually improved. In the last 12 months it has been great to see the high level of land sales and new homes being built. i have many great friends on the island who have alway been there to help. The island lifestyle is what you make of it... I would never live anywhere else
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yes i have beem thinking of buying some land and build one of these

http://www.homedsgn.com/2011/06/16/containers-of-hope-a-40000-home-by-benjamin-garcia-saxe/

on the land as an environmentally friendly recycled home.

but from what i have been reading the MBSC is a pian in the butt to deal with?
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adsilac
adsilac I too have considered building with containers. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=H0uAeLM6zII
I put up a new thread with such question re building codes. There a heaps of youtube videos. If you find out any information, please message me candoadsila@gmail.com. thanks in advance
Mar 14, 2018
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I grew up on the islands in Moreton Bay and I really think that Russell is no worse than many places on the mainland. Yes, cheap rents will always bring some undesirables but there are suburbs of Brisbane where I feel a whole lot less safe than Russell. I have never had any problems other than petty theft which is an annoyance rather than a major worry. As long as you live aroun d the main part of town it is great place that has a lot to offer. On the high school, sorry, that is coming but ain't here yet. There are lot of retirees living on Russell which generally makes it a pretty quiet part of the world. Shopping is fine, medical fine, and there is really not much need to go to the mainland that often. I agree PedroV in that the car on the mainland is a constant worry so maybe the bus is the better option.
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PedroV 2yrs+
Yes there is lots of drug use on Russell Island, reputations don't develop out of a vacuum. There are also some who are downright dangerous folk who should be avoided. That said every place has these types. You would be better off renting for a time to see if this place fits your lifestyle. Living on an island is often not what it seems. Transport is expensive and you have to keep a mainland car which is expensive and they frequently get trashed whilst unattended. I had a relative who moved to a nearby Moreton bay island and went and did some work on their property. It was an eye opener as how some live over there. Bear in mind if you need the cops often they aren't available for some time.
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splinter
splinter Russell Island is the best kept secret and I love it. I am sorry that you ooze such negativity. The suburb I left to come to Russell Island was Banyo. Now that is what you call a drug area. Dangerous folk and criminals, thieves by the bucket load. Just contact the Hendra Police station they can give you the stats.Transport wise its very cheap now translink has the water taxis and the bus fares are very reasonable. When living in Brisbane, travelled by car and train to the CBD and was costing over $70.00 per week and only lived 10 klms from CBD. the biggest downfall with regards Russell Island is the Redland Bay City Council, which fails to tick the boxes required to successfully maintain Island amenities. BUT will gladly take the rates for houses and land and give back nothing in return such as sealed roads, curb and channelling which should be a priority to bring Russell Island out of the backwater and into the 21st Century
2yrs+
BradF
BradF I live on Russell now, and can not believe all the council bashing. I suggest you live in the Byron Shire for a while if you want to experience a bad council. This is heaven in comparison.
2yrs+
haengh
haengh Just thought I'd mention that Councils are not recognized by the Australian constitution. There were three attempts by government by referendum to get them recognized, but we rejected them every time. So why are we continuing to pay rates to a bunch of crooks who are illegally bleeding the RI dwellers of their hard-earned money? Beats me!
2yrs+
88KATmando
88KATmando As an SMBI resident, I think I would probably think twice about the two larger islands here, re raising kids. It should be a beautiful place to do so, but with nothing for the kids to do, it would be very hard I think to keep your kids away from some of the very bad element, there are children around 10+ who seem to always be at the jetty or at the shops creating havoc, the same ones everytime. I would shove fishing down my kids throught as not much else to do, but still it would be hard to manage your kids. I am sorry to hear cin85's comment and I hope everything improves for her and her child. The Redlands council has a lot to answer for, they should have in the very early days made sure that these islands were developed in the same way and same pace as the rest of their shire over on the mainland, from the start put in all the infrastructure, places of employment, good shopping centres, a high school etc. not leave the islands to fend for themselves, because as it was not done that way, now it has basically gotten to a stage where there are many problems which will take a long time to sort out, even if they started today, it has caused in many ways an underclass to live here and unfortunately many to be attracted to the islands because of the cheap rent, real estate etc, when they get here there are no jobs, so unemployment soars, families become stressed, addictions because of idleness take hold, etc etc. I guess if something sounds too good to be true, i.e. cheap realestate prices, then anyone should ask themselves why? I live on one of the small islands, mainly retirees here, nice community spirit, we keep mainly to ourselves though, there are some down and outers here but overall, worth the balance, quiet verses the madness that is mainly Australia! This is my honest opinion and I hope this helps people make an informed choice as to whether to move to the SMBIs of not!
2yrs+
janel6
janel6 I agree with you.
2yrs+
rosannam
rosannam yes I agree with you too, but I think it is also due to the fact this is only an 8 x4 k island so people after some time living here get to know who is who and what is what, and good people and bad people, as has already been remarked but the difference here is it is in a confined space and the blocks are tiny so you often end up with an inconvenient neighbour I myself am retired and love living on an island, but for people to move here just to escape rules and regulations is not good
May 14, 2018
bradh10
bradh10 The problem is that the council are charging rates higher than the mainland but they haven't provided half the infrastructure. It all started back in the seventies when the islands were subdivided and some people in power made a lot of money selling blocks without proper infrastructure and promising a bridge. The bridge and required infrastructure has never happened. However the council are happy to keep collecting the rates for all these residential blocks as if they HAVE provided what is in any other similarily zoned area in Australian. It's been a great little earner for them. Collect the rates for something you never provide. For 50 years now they have been doing this and are basically still getting away with it. How can blocks still be selling for $10k when on the mainland they are $200k but the rates are the same? The land price has barely moved in 50 years while every other piece of residential land in the country has gone up 10 fold? They are yet to seal the roads or provide sewerage or sufficient parking and transport etc etc. What everybody seems to miss is the fact that if all the vacant residential blocks were suddenly built on tomorrow none of the existing infrastructure could cope. It would be mayhem trying to get a parking spot or a ticket on the ferries and barges. There is about 2000 vacant blocks still on Russell so if by chance they all were built on tomorrow then what? It's just lucky (for the council) that hasn't happened and that's how they are still getting away with it. No other land gets subdivided these days unless all the infrastructure is made available. Just because the council/government/people in power ripped citizens off 50 years ago doesn't mean the existing council should think they have the right to keep it going. They either need to provide what everybody else gets for their money or stop charging such high rates for some they are not providing. You can't have it both ways. Why do we let them get away with it? Well we are not people in power we are just islanders and with that attitude we are treated with disrespect. Lets stand up to the council and make them cough up. They have been milking this cash cow for too long. Lets show them we want what we pay for. We should pick a day and all turn up to the ferry with the designated trolley size at the same time. Lets see how the infrastructure copes then!
Jul 30, 2018
Drew Heigs
Drew Heigs The council scam sounds like a cracker story for A Current Affair as well as a class action suite against the council.
Aug 07, 2018
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