News

Ambos fear ghost of old chief

Ghostbuster Jack Sim outside the old Ipswich Ambulance Station that is believed to be haunted.
Ghostbuster Jack Sim outside the old Ipswich Ambulance Station that is believed to be haunted. David Nielsen

THE GHOST of WC Tomkins used to haunt the old Ipswich ambulance station in North Ipswich.

But it remains to be seen whether the former superintendent will haunt the station at its new premises in Garden St.

Renowned haunted historian Jack Sim interviewed several long-term Ipswich ambulance officers for his book called Haunted Ipswich and they confirmed the presence of the ghost.

Mr Sim lives up to his reputation. When the QT asked him to spell his surname he said: "Sim. That's S-I... and M as in morbid."

So who is this ghost?

"Mr Tomkins was an old superintendent who dropped dead in 1934 in his upstairs residence inside the building. He founded the Ipswich City Ambulance Transport Brigade in 1901 and he lived on site," Mr Sim said.

"Ipswich ambos told me about a ghost that rattled blinds and moved from floor to floor. He is not a bad ghost but he still gives people the creeps.

"A few of them spoke of seeing the ghost and others of feeling like they were being watched and followed. These are ambos who attend some horrible accident scenes, but some of them said they wouldn't go upstairs at night. But this ghost has never hurt anyone and I don't think he would. He founded the ambulance in Ipswich and he is a nice bloke.

"Everyone I spoke to that works there said they just feel like it is Mr Tomkins following people around and keeping an eye on things."

One Ipswich ambulance officer spoke to the QT about the ghost.

"Several ambulance officers say they saw him and were frightened by him although I personally never saw him," he said.

"The building used to be three storeys and you'd have to climb up these old stairs. But I know they used to go up there at night and feel his presence.

"He used to get seen in the hallway down near some old meeting rooms that had some old furniture from back in the 1900s.

"His photo was on the wall nearby and that is where he was often seen. He never did any harm but some officers felt uncomfortable in his presence."

Mr Tomkins' ghost has not been sighted at the new ambulance station, but that may change.

"His photo has been brought to the new station but we are waiting for the museum to be built so we can put it up," the officer said.

"So he hasn't been seen at our new station, but he might when his photo goes up."

The officer said the ghost of Mr Tomkins was not known to take ambulances for a ride at night, although he added it "would be good if he did" .

"We could do with an extra officer on the road to help us on a busy Friday and Saturday night," he joked.

"I'm not sure how the patients would react if he turned up to assist us - especially when the stretcher wheeled itself into the hospital."

Mr Sim, who grew up in Ipswich, said that traditionally ghosts occupy places they worked at or lived in during life.

He runs a ghost tour on Saturday nights to Ipswich Cemetery and takes private tours on the haunted sites that exist in the city. The tour stops outside the old ambulance building where he relates the story of Mr Tomkins.

"I believe in ghosts. My business is all about haunted history and heritage," he said.

"This history is as important as traditional history.

"Ipswich has some really great ghost stories."

Topics:  ambulance emergency services ghost ipswich supernatural


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

EXPLAINED: Bushfire emergency terms broken down

CONCERN BUT NO PANIC: A huge bushfire impacts Peregian Springs and Coolum residents as the flames threaten their homes. The fire burnt over 500 hectares and dozens of emergency crews were deployed throughout the night. Firemen battle the heat and the blaze.

Emergency alerts and lingo in layman's terms

Man receives head injury in car, bicycle crash

RACQ Careflight Rescue helicopter, generic. Photo Contributed

Man airlifted to hospital after motorway collision

Inside the fire zone: Coolum blaze devastation

Wildlife rescue workers go looking for injured wildlife

Local Partners

Former Family Matters stare accused of child abuse

DARIUS McCrary, who played Eddie Winslow on the ’90s sitcom Family Matters, has been accused of holding his infant daughter over a pot of boiling water.

Bindi Irwin's birthday tribute to her dad

Bindi Irwin

Bindi Irwin has paid tribute to her dad on his 55th birthday

Reality TV show gives Maryborough a boost

*WARNING EMBARGOED until 9.15pm Monday January 30* Sean Hollands and Susan Rawlings pictured after their wedding on the TV series Married At First Sight. Supplied by Channel 9.

Maryborough looks good on reality TV show.

Buderim dad rejects gay son's emotional plea for second time

LOVERS: Grant and Chris have been together for more than three years, and Chris' parents refuse to acknowledge their son's fiance.

Son’s emotional plea rejected again by unmoved father

What's on the big screen this week

Ewan McGregor and Jonny Lee Miller in a scene from the movie T2: Trainspotting.

This week's new releases offer plenty of variety for movie buffs.

REVIEW: Under the Gun doco looks at right to bear arms

ARMED: A still from the 2016 documentary film Under the Gun by Stephanie Soechtig.

An in-depth look into America's gun culture.

Hodges proud to be part of first channel dedicated to NRL

Justin Hodges is gearing up for his new gig on Fox League.

Footy star hopes to provide a voice for players on new NRL channel

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Expert: Why renters, home buyers may struggle

Matusik Property Insights director Michael Matusik.

What's next for the city's housing market

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!