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Injured Ian Thorpe spotted in wheelchair

<p>Aussie swimming legend Ian Thorpe has been seen using a wheelchair at the Olympic trials in Brisbane following a painful injury understood to have been sustained during the filming of a reality TV show.</p> <p>Thorpe, 41, was hurt while participating in the filming of <em>Celebrity Amazing Race</em>, <a href="https://7news.com.au/sport/swimming/ian-thorpe-spotted-in-a-wheelchair-after-suffering-a-painful-injury-while-shooting-a-reality-tv-show-c-14997532" target="_blank" rel="noopener">as reported by 7NEWS</a>, where he teamed up with his childhood friend Christian Miranda. Despite the injury, which has been described as serious and painful, the five-time Olympic gold medallist has persevered in his role as a broadcaster for the swim trials, navigating the Brisbane Aquatic Centre with the aid of a wheelchair.</p> <p>7NEWS chief reporter Chris Reason provided an update on Thorpe's condition, assuring fans that "Ian Thorpe is completely OK, but apparently the injury was a serious and painful one."</p> <p>Thorpe's commitment to his broadcasting duties, despite his injury, has been noted by many at the event. His presence at the trials has been a source of inspiration for many young athletes competing in Brisbane.</p> <p>Thorpe's injury has not dampened the spirit of the Olympic trials, and his resilience continues to inspire. Fans and fellow athletes alike are wishing him a speedy recovery and look forward to seeing him back on his feet soon.</p> <p><em>Image: 7NEWS</em></p>

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Lisa Wilkinson's hefty legal fees revealed

<p>The eye-watering costs of Lisa Wilkinson's legal battle against Bruce Lehrmann after he unsuccessfully sued her for defamation has been revealed.</p> <p>Lehrmann took Wilkinson and her former employer Network Ten to court following the airing of allegations by Brittany Higgins that she was raped in Parliament House in 2019.</p> <p>The defamation suit was lost by Lehrmann in April after Justice Michael Lee found that Lehrmann had, on the balance of probabilities, assaulted Ms Higgins, therefore cannot be defamed for the allegations. </p> <p>Ms Wilkinson has now returned to court in an attempt to recuperate approximately $1.8 million in legal fees from Network 10 after she decided to be represented separately to her former employer. </p> <p>Documents released by the Federal Court on Thursday reveal the eye-watering cost behind Ms Wilkinson’s defence by high-profile defamation lawyer Sue Chrysanthou SC.</p> <p>The documents detail numerous invoices issued to Ms Wilkinson throughout the years-long legal battle; the most recent being an invoice dated May 9th for $405,328.</p> <p>The fee is listed as being for Ms Sue Chrysanthou‘s counsel; similar fees dating back to mid-2023 ranged in size from $10,340 to $97,988 before GST was added.</p> <p>The largest single invoice issued to Ms Wilkinson was dated February 29th 2024 and amounted to a whopping $576,224.72 after GST, which included news subscriptions and lunches. </p> <p>Early costs agreements sent to Gillis Delaney Lawyers, who Ms Wilkinson had retained to represent her, and Ms Chrysanthou quoted fees of $8,000 per day.</p> <p>A range of other expenditures are included in the documents, including thousands of dollars for printing and folders, USB drives, and subscriptions to <em>The Australian</em>.</p> <p>A referee is expected to be appointed for certain items that the Network claims did not come under legal costs, with Justice Lee foreshadowing a similar process for costs being asked of Mr Lehrmann.</p> <p>In earlier written submissions, Network 10 said it did not have to pick up the bill for Ms Wilkinson’s legal costs which were “unnecessarily duplicative or wasteful”.</p> <p>The referee, called for by Network 10, will be tasked with combing through the legal bills incurred by the former <em>The Project</em> host to decide whether the costs were reasonable, and whether she would be compensated.</p> <p><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-ddba61a4-7fff-2ae6-53fc-4cc05f56fefb">Image credits: Steven Markham/Speed Media - MICK TSIKAS/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock Editorial</span></em></p>

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"Welcome home, Harold": Iconic Neighbours actor returns to Ramsay Street

<p>More than 15 years after his departure, Harold Bishop is returning to Ramsay Street. </p> <p>Ian Smith's character has long been a fan favourite on <em>Neighbours</em>, after originally starring on the soap between 1987 and 1991, before he returned in 1996 until his departure in 2009. </p> <p>Since then, Harold has made multiple guest appearances, including in the 2022 finale.</p> <p>When Amazon picked up the Aussie show, Smith rejoined the cast for a short time but quickly left after a health scare.</p> <p>But now, Harold is making another comeback. </p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/C5fVoAlvJEJ/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/C5fVoAlvJEJ/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Neighbours (@neighbours)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The official <em>Neighbours</em> Instagram shared the exciting news of his return, writing, “After 15 years of living away, the legendary Harold Bishop is returning to Erinsborough."</p> <p>“We are thrilled to welcome Ian Smith back to the show and the opening titles, where he belongs.”</p> <p>Fan were quick to flood the comment section with excitable messages, rejoicing in the fact that a fan favourite character was returning. </p> <p>“The best news. The show misses an elder character like Harold,” one person wrote.</p> <p>Another commented, “Absolutely amazing news to wake up too. Welcome home, Harold.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images / YouTube </em></p>

TV

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Seven's insane plan to ambush Lisa Wilkinson exposed

<p>A bizarre plan pitched by Channel Seven for Bruce Lehrmann to ambush Lisa Wilkinson has been revealed. </p> <p>According to several close friends of Mr Lehrmann, Channel Seven's <em>Spotlight</em> program suggested that Lehrmann hover around the Sydney suburb of Cremorne in the hopes of catching Lisa Wilkinson unawares. </p> <p>They proceeded to explain to <a href="https://www.news.com.au/national/nsw-act/sevens-plan-for-bruce-lehrmann-to-ambush-lisa-wilkinson-in-public/news-story/1e6df346affc123ad23f1f7efcb12136" target="_blank" rel="noopener">news.com.au</a> how they wanted Lehrmann to confront Wilkinson while a cameraman stood close in the hopes of manufacturing a must-see TV moment. </p> <p>Mr Lehrmann's friends said he was not keen on the idea, although the program continued to suggest the ambush. </p> <p>As the fallout continues over untested allegations in the Federal Court that Mr Lehrmann leaked Brittany Higgins’ private text messages to the current affairs program, the former Liberal staffer’s mates are spilling the beans on claims of the program’s bizarre plan.</p> <p>“Bruce very much wanted a third program. But that was a bridge too far," another friend said.</p> <p>“Seven were desperate for ideas. They raised it several times. On many occasions I met with Bruce after meetings and they were pushing for it."</p> <p>“The plan as described was (they) wanted Bruce to be at a local cafe that they knew Lisa Wilkinson would go to and they would have a TV camera confront her.”</p> <p>When asked what Mr Lehrmann planned to say during the ambush, the friend admitted, “I dunno. I don’t know if they thought that far ahead.”</p> <p>Mr Lehrmann’s inner circle claim that it was just one of a number of wild ideas floated by <em>Spotlight</em> producer Steve Jackson as they pitched ideas for future programs about Lehrmann. </p> <p>Another confidante of Mr Lehrmann’s said the Wilkinson plan was “bizarre” and joked it seemed to involve Mr Lehrmann jumping from behind a pot plant to startle the TV star, an idea the former Liberal staffer wasn't keen for, despite the Seven “ideas factory”.</p> <p>“It wasn’t something that Bruce (Lehrmann) pushed," the source said.</p> <p>“<em>Spotlight</em> had a million viewers and so they were always looking for any excuse for a third program. The plan was to spark some sort of public row.”</p> <p>Mr Lehrmann’s criminal trial was delayed in the wake of Wilkinson’s ill-fated Logies speech, but his barrister Steve Whybrow SC has hailed the speech as keeping him out of jail.</p> <p>“Frankly, if it wasn’t for Lisa Wilkinson’s speech at the Logies, Bruce would probably be in jail. Thank God for that speech," Mr Whybrow said.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p>

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Deadly mushroom lunch survivor speaks out for the first time

<p>The man who survived the deadly mushroom lunch in Victoria last year has spoken out for the first time, sharing what has kept him going through the tragedy. </p> <p>Pastor Ian Wilkinson, 70, was hospitalised for ingesting the poison, which claimed the lives of his wife Heather, his brother Don and his sister-in-law Gail, after attending lunch at Erin Patterson's home on July 29th 2023. </p> <p>Ms Patterson has since been charged with three counts of murder and five of attempted murder after inviting her ex-husband’s family over to her home for lunch and allegedly serving them the poisoned dish.</p> <p>Six months on, Ian Wilkinson addressed his congregation as he returned to the Korumburra Baptist Church on Sunday for the first time since the alleged poisoning, saying it had been a “big week” full of milestones for him.</p> <p>“At the start of the week it was six months since Heather, Gail and Don went to be with the Lord …” he told the congregation.</p> <p>“Friday was my birthday and yesterday was our 45th wedding anniversary."</p> <p>“So it’s been a pretty big week but I am grateful for all that God has given me, God has done through me.”</p> <p>The week prior marked 25 years since he first took on the role of pastor of the Korumburra parish, with the parishioners offering him a small gift following the sermon.</p> <p>Mr Wilkinson seemed overcome with emotion during parts his sermon, sharing with the congregation that he was grateful to be back after a terrifying two-month stint in the hospital while he fought for his life after the poisoning. </p> <p>“The ways are sometimes hard but God is good. He’s with us,” he said.</p> <p>“He promised to never leave … and I can say, that is true.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Supplied</em></p>

Caring

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Lisa Wilkinson's fears over losing her home

<p>Lisa Wilkinson's fears over losing her multi-million dollar mansion to cover her legal fees have been detailed in a series of court documents. </p> <p>The former host of <em>The Project</em> entered into a bitter legal battle after being sued for defamation by Bruce Lehrmann, and decided to hire top defamation lawyer Sue Chrysanthou SC and her own legal team to fight the charges. </p> <p>In a series of emotional emails and documents tendered by the Federal Court, Wilkinson was allegedly "almost hysterical" and "sobbing" over the notion of losing her home in Cremorne to pay the hefty legal fees. </p> <p>In a briefing note prepared for Ten’s legal team, Network Ten CEO Beverley McGarvey detailed a “challenging” call she had with the network star on June 7th 2023.</p> <p>McGarvey had called to ask how Ms Wilkinson was going in the wake of Channel 7’s <em>Spotlight</em> program and the leaking of audio provided to police and lawyers but never tendered in court.</p> <p>“Lisa was very upset and emotional and it was a very challenging call,” MsMcGarvey wrote.</p> <p>“She was almost immediately upset and started talking about legal fees and how she would have to sell her house."</p> <p>“I would say her tone was almost hysterical.”</p> <p>McGarvey then did her best to ease Wilkinson's concerns, reminding her of her secure financial position. </p> <p>“She is being paid by us on full salary, and lives in a lavish multimillion dollar home with a pool and a tennis court and harbour views so I hope this is not a real risk,” she said.</p> <p>“She asked if we would pay for her fees and this came up over and over again in the conversation. I told her to talk with Nick, her manager."</p> <p>“But she had chosen her own legal team against our advice and chosen a team we objected to.</p> <p>“She said if I actually cared about her, I would make sure we pay their legal fees.”</p> <p>The documents were released by the Federal Court on Friday after Ms Wilkinson won her legal battle to force Network Ten to pay for her legal fees that are estimated to amount to up to $2 million.</p> <p>The exact amount Ten will pay has not yet been determined.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p>

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"I was shocked": Lisa Wilkinson's text messages shown in court

<p>A series of explosive texts revealed in court have shown how Lisa Wilkinson's controversial Logies speech led to her untimely dismissal from <em>The Project</em>. </p> <p>The texts are contained in an affidavit that Wilkinson and her lawyers have submitted to the Federal Court in relation to a dispute over who will pay her million-dollar legal fees after being sued by Bruce Lehrmann for defamation. </p> <p>In an affidavit to the Federal Court, Wilkinson said she was shocked when she found out she was being let go from <em>The Project</em>, after she discovered her agent Nick Fordham had a meeting with Network Ten CEO Beverley McGarvey.</p> <p>“I was shocked, embarrassed and deeply disappointed by Ms McGarvey’s decision to remove me from <em>The Project,</em>” she said.</p> <p>“At that time, my most recent contract as co-host of The Project had only been signed 11 months before and still had more than two years to run.”</p> <p>Speaking of her agent's meeting, she said, “He told me that Ms McGarvey had informed him that Ten was doing a ‘rebrand’ of <em>The Project</em> with a number of hosting changes. He told me that she had said that those hosting changes included me."</p> <p>“He also told me that she had said that, because there had been too much heat on me in the months since the Logies speech – and, as a result, too much ‘brand damage’ – it was best that I be removed from my hosting role on <em>The Project</em>.”</p> <p>When she said farewell to <em>The Project</em> in 2022, Wilkinson blamed the “targeted toxicity” of sections of the media.</p> <p>“The last six months have not been easy,” Wilkinson told viewers of the panel show when she announced she would be leaving the show. </p> <p>“And the relentless, targeted toxicity by some sections of the media has taken a toll not just on me but on people I love."</p> <p>“I have had a ball,” she said. “But for me right now it’s time for a change. To be clear. I’m not leaving Ten and we’re looking at some very exciting work ideas ahead.”</p> <p>In the affidavit, she says that Ms McGarvey approved Wilkinson’s on-air explanation for her departure and suggested that they “sound very authentic”.</p> <p>“I said to her that this decision to remove me from <em>The Project</em> would result in yet more negative publicity for me, for <em>The Project</em>, and for Ten, particularly if my sudden departure was without explanation,” Wilkinson said.</p> <p>Ms McGarvey told Wilkinson in texts “Perfect delivery, you spoke from the heart.” </p> <p>“It was a beautiful sentiment and you are so generous to your colleagues. Thank you. The media should all be kind, you deserve it.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p>

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"Very poor journalism": Lisa Wilkinson called out in defamation case

<p>Lisa Wilkinson has been forced to defend the journalistic decisions of <em>The Project</em>, as she took to the stand as part of Bruce Lehrmann's defamation case against Wilkinson and Channel Ten. </p> <p>During court proceedings on Friday, Wilkinson admitted that during her bombshell report on Brittany Higgins' rape allegations, the program left out key information. </p> <p><em>The Project</em> allegedly edited out important details about what happened in Parliament House the morning after Brittany Higgins was allegedly raped.</p> <div data-body-element-id="zjCMXjhzxa"> <p>In an uncut version of the episode which aired in February 2021, Wilkinson asked Ms Higgins if any security guards had asked if she was "okay" after the alleged incident.</p> </div> <div data-body-element-id="R0B2D1Ni6K"> <p>Ms Higgins replied, "No, no. I mean, besides one who called into the office in the morning, and said ‘Is everyone okay?’ and that was it."</p> </div> <div data-body-element-id="2D5V5jCZaQ"> <p>In the final cut, the words "...besides the one who called into the office in the morning" were not included.</p> </div> <div data-body-element-id="9FH5ZgE5Ew"> <p>Bruce Lehrmann's barrister Matthew Richardson SC quizzed Wilkinson about the edit, saying, "That's very poor journalism, isn't it?"</p> </div> <div data-body-element-id="q0X6OvsQtG"> <p>Wilkinson replied, "I'm disappointed to see that. It is a detail which escaped my attention."</p> <p>Elsewhere during the court proceedings, Wilkinson bit back at Lehrmann's lawyer for challenging her journalistic abilities.</p> <p>On Thursday, Wilkinson was asked why she didn't ask to see the metadata on a photo of a bruise on Brittany Higgins' thigh, which she claimed was from the alleged rape. </p> <p>Wilkinson told the Federal Court that she was not "tech-savvy" and did not know what metadata was, saying, "I didn't know photos had metadata."</p> <div data-body-element-id="A9GzCf-Iqm"> <p>Lehrmann's lawyer Mr Richardson was quick to ask in response: "You describe yourself as a serious investigative journalist?"</p> </div> <div data-body-element-id="3eDMnH9cY0"> <p>She bit back, stating she only refers to herself as a "journalist".</p> </div> <div data-body-element-id="tMBlnKPjTn"> <p>Mr Richardson said, "You were emphatic yesterday when you said you were not a tabloid journalist.'</p> </div> <div data-body-element-id="9WzAcuceor"> <p>She repeated: "I describe myself as a journalist, Mr Richardson."</p> </div> <div data-body-element-id="bUfGxqx44_"> <p>He said given she had been a journalist for 40 years, "it was most improbable that you did not know what metadata was."</p> </div> <div data-body-element-id="QIHT-BVE1b"> <p>She replied, "I disagree."</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p> </div> </div>

Legal

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Lisa Wilkinson sues Channel Ten

<p>Australian television personality Lisa Wilkinson is taking legal action against her former employer, Network 10, in a dispute that revolves around an alleged breach of agreement concerning the payment of legal costs incurred in their ongoing defamation case initiated by Bruce Lehrmann.</p> <p>According to a recent report by <a href="https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nsw/lisa-wilkinson-sues-network-10-over-bruce-lehrmann-defamation-suit-costs/news-story/b796eceb7c9bf6f1700e5c4f27c6b27a" target="_blank" rel="noopener">The Daily Telegraph</a>, Network 10 is refusing to cover two invoices totalling $723,000 for legal services that Wilkinson acquired when she hired prominent barrister Sue Chrysanthou SC and Gillis Delaney Lawyers partner Anthony Jefferies earlier this year.</p> <p>This decision by Wilkinson to engage her legal team instead of utilising Network 10's retained law firm, Thomson Geer, appears to be at the heart of the dispute.</p> <p>Wilkinson, a well-known media figure in Australia, left <em>The Project</em> in November 2022, citing being subjected to "targeted toxicity". This departure marked the beginning of a series of legal and professional challenges that have now culminated in her suing Network 10 in the New South Wales Supreme Court.</p> <p>Wilkinson's legal action claims that Network 10 had accepted liability to indemnify her in the defamation case, regardless of whether she chose to be "independently represented" or not. Network 10 has responded to these allegations by emphasising the importance of due process in justifying the substantial legal invoices. They expressed that their primary focus remains on defending the defamation suit brought by Bruce Lehrmann.</p> <p>Lehrmann is suing Network 10, Lisa Wilkinson, and the ABC for defamation in connection with their reporting of a sexual assault allegation made by Brittany Higgins in 2019. Lehrmann alleges that Wilkinson's interview with Higgins on <em>The Project</em>, which aired on February 15, 2021, conveyed a series of defamatory meanings, including the accusation that he had raped Higgins in then-defense industry minister Linda Reynolds' office in 2019. Despite the legal challenges, Wilkinson's interview with Higgins garnered critical acclaim, earning her two Walkley Award nominations and a Logie Award.</p> <p>After her departure from <em>The Project</em>, Paramount Australia executive vice president Beverley McGarvey indicated that they had plans for Wilkinson's future, expressing optimism about continuing their relationship with the renowned journalist. However, Wilkinson has not been seen on air since then, and her contractual obligations with Network 10 are reported to extend into the next year, with a deal rumoured to be worth seven figures.</p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

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"Immense relief": Death cap mushroom survivor released from hospital

<p>Ian Wilkinson, the survivor of a suspected mushroom poisoning incident, has been discharged from Melbourne's Austin Hospital after spending two months in critical condition following a family gathering.</p> <p>Wilkinson, a Baptist pastor residing in the quaint South Gippsland town of Korrumburra, was among four individuals who fell seriously ill after consuming a beef Wellington dish suspected to have been contaminated with death cap mushrooms.</p> <p>Tragically, Wilkinson's wife, Heather, lost her life in the aftermath, as did Heather's sister, Gail Patterson, and her husband, Don.</p> <p>Ian managed to pull through, and his release from the hospital marked a significant milestone in his recovery. The Wilkinson family expressed their profound gratitude towards the hospital staff for their relentless dedication and exceptional care during this challenging period.</p> <p>"We are pleased to announce that Ian Wilkinson has made significant progress in his recovery and was released from Austin Hospital on Friday," the family said in a statement. "This milestone marks a moment of immense relief and gratitude for Ian and the entire Wilkinson family.</p> <p>"The Wilkinson family would like to extend their heartfelt thanks to the Leongatha, Dandenong and Austin Hospitals for their unwavering dedication and exceptional care that played a pivotal role in Ian's recovery.</p> <p>"The medical team's expertise and compassion have been a source of comfort and hope throughout this journey.</p> <p>"Additionally, the family is profoundly grateful for the outpouring of support, prayers, and well-wishes from the Korumburra community, church, friends, family, and colleagues.</p> <p>"This collective kindness has been a pillar of strength for Ian and the family, reinforcing the sense of unity and compassion that defines our community.</p> <p>"As Ian continues his journey towards full recovery, the Wilkinson family kindly requests that their privacy be respected."</p> <p>Meanwhile, the woman responsible for preparing the ill-fated meal, Erin Patterson, <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/details-of-erin-patterson-s-police-statement-around-fatal-mushroom-meal-revealed" target="_blank" rel="noopener">remains a suspect</a> as police homicide detectives continue their investigation into the three tragic deaths. She vehemently denies any wrongdoing.</p> <p><em>Image: Facebook</em></p>

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Update from survivor of deadly mushroom meal

<p>The lone survivor of a group of four individuals who consumed a meal containing suspected poisonous mushrooms has received an update from the family. The Victorian community continues to extend their support during this time.</p> <p>Tragedy struck as Don and Gail Patterson, along with Gail’s sister, Heather Wilkinson, lost their lives after partaking in a lunch gathering at the residence of Erin Patterson, Don and Gail's former daughter-in-law. The incident occurred in Leongatha, located in the southeastern region of Victoria, on July 29.</p> <p>Erin Patterson had prepared a meal for the group, which also included Heather's husband, Ian Wilkinson, a pastor at a Baptist church. The attendees fell seriously ill after the meal, exhibiting symptoms that aligned with the ingestion of toxic death cap mushrooms, according to the police.</p> <p>On a recent Sunday evening, Ian Wilkinson's family expressed their heartfelt gratitude to the medical staff at Austin Hospital for their consistent care and support. They also acknowledged the numerous cards and letters received from concerned individuals in the public.</p> <p>The family shared: “We are deeply moved by the outpouring of kindness, prayers, and support from friends, family, and the broader community.” </p> <p>“Your thoughts and well-wishes have been a source of strength and comfort to us all.</p> <p>“As we navigate this difficult journey, we kindly request that our privacy be respected. We need space to grieve, support one another, and care for Ian without public intrusion.”</p> <p>While Ian Wilkinson, aged 70, remains in critical but stable condition at a hospital in the northeastern part of Melbourne, reports indicate that members of the South Gippsland community are willing to step forward as organ donors. Local councillor Jenni Keerie stated that people have been reaching out to her to inquire about becoming donors.</p> <p>Nathan Hersey, the Mayor of South Gippsland Shire, noted that the community has been discussing the significance of organ donation. In the absence of a community donor, Wilkinson might face a wait of up to a year for a new liver. It is worth noting that the majority of organ recipients in Australia experience waiting periods of at least nine months while searching for a suitable match.</p> <p><em>Images: Facebook / A Current Affair</em></p> <p><strong><em>EDITOR'S NOTE: We received a number of comments in response to this article concerning organ donation. This one from a Reader really deserved being appended to the article:</em></strong></p> <p><em>"I am a forever grateful liver recipient whose life was miraculously saved when all had gone catastrophically wrong. <a href="https://www.transplantadvocacy.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">https://www.transplantadvocacy.com/</a> The only way we can increase organ donation is to increase next of kin consent rates. In Australia every person who passes under the right circumstances is a potential donor. Whether they are registered or not their family will be asked to consider organ donation and must give their consent for donation to proceed. Sadly 46% of families say no. In Victoria it is closer to 50%. Families are critical for organ donation and for a deceased donor to be found to support the victim of the Victorian poisoning, another healthy Victorian will need to pass tragically and on life support. Waiting for a donor is not like waiting for a spare part for your car from the factory. It is more like finding the perfect part at a car wreckers after someone has written of their car but the part you need is still ok. You can help raise awareness by helping to get families having the conversation about organ donation before </em><em>tragedy strikes. Not waiting until they learn their loved one is never coming home." </em><em style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;"> – </em><em>Robert Manning, </em><em>Forever grateful recipient and passionate Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplant Awareness Advocate. Founder and Senior Advocate <a href="https://www.transplantadvocacy.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">www.TransplantAdvocacy.com</a></em></p>

Caring

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House of Hope: Fresh start for Kelly's kids

<p>Gold Coast mum Kelly Wilkinson, who tragically passed away two years ago, has left behind three young children between the ages of two and nine.</p> <p>Her life was cut short in April 2021, allegedly at the hands of her estranged husband, Brian Earl Johnston. The horrific incident resulted in Kelly's body being found badly burned in her Arundel home's backyard, while Mr Johnston was discovered nearby with severe burns to his hands and airway.</p> <p>Since then, Kelly's children have been under the care of her sister, Danielle Carroll, and her husband Rhys. The Carroll family, along with their five children and Kelly's three kids, have been living together in a cramped four-bedroom house, where living spaces were converted into sleeping quarters. The challenges of accommodating such a large family in limited space have been immense, and at times, they find themselves with five people sharing a single bed.</p> <p>However, their situation took a positive turn when businesswoman Tamika Smith, a relative of Mr Carroll, heard about the tragedy and decided to lend her support.</p> <p>The founder of My Bella Casa and Top 100 Women launched a campaign called "I Stand With Kelly" shortly after Ms Wilkinson's passing. The campaign aimed to build a new home for the 10-person family.</p> <p>With the help of an anonymous contributor, Ms Smith secured a plot of land, and the renowned homebuilder, Metricon, generously donated an entire house for the cause.</p> <p>After two years of hard work and dedication, the family's fully furnished new home was finally revealed to them.</p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/CvGO3pfBjbH/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CvGO3pfBjbH/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Tamika Smith (@tamika_stephanie)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Mr Carroll expressed his excitement about the new house, especially for Kelly's three children, as it will provide them with a fresh start and a place they can call their own. While the loss of their mother is deeply felt, the children are constantly surrounded by love and care from their extended family.</p> <p>Kelly's kids have not forgotten their mother, and though they miss her dearly, they understand that she is no longer with them.</p> <p>“They know she’s gone," Mrs Carroll told A Current Affair. "They constantly say that they miss her. The two year old does ask for mum but they know she’s not coming back.” </p> <p>The Carroll family, along with their own children, have written heartfelt letters to thank the builders for their incredible efforts in creating this new home.</p> <p>The house not only represents a new beginning for Ms Wilkinson's children and the Carroll family but also serves as a reminder of the love she brought to her family before her untimely passing.</p> <p>Though the pain of her loss remains, the community's support in building this new home has been a heartwarming gesture, one that Kelly's family deeply appreciates and will surely treasure forever.</p> <p><em>Images: Today Show / Instagram / GoFundMe</em></p> <p> </p> <p> </p>

Family & Pets

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Lisa Wilkinson denies turning to senior politicians over Higgins’ rape allegations

<p>Channel 10 personality and former <em>The Project </em>host Lisa Wilkinson has denied claims that she approached senior level politicians with a request to pose questions about Brittany Higgins’ rape allegations against Bruce Lehrmann during Question Time. </p> <p>The dismissal came in the wake of Channel 7’s <em>Spotlight </em>episode featuring the formerly accused, where a recording of a phone call between Wilkinson, her producer Angus Llewellyn, Higgins, and Higgins’ partner David Sharaz was exposed.</p> <p>During the conversation, which was recorded in January 2021, they were reportedly discussing which politicians they might be able to work with to steer the conversation in parliament, with Wilkinson telling Higgins that she wanted to see her “enunciate the fact that this place [Parliament House] is all about suppression of people’s natural sense of justice”. </p> <p>Sharaz noted that he had a “friend in Labor”, and that Senator Katy Gallagher could “probe and continue it [the conversation] going”. At one stage, Wilkinson went so far as to claim that “certainly Albo” should be considered, though she later went on to retract that, and suggested “Tanya Plibersek, definitely”. </p> <p>And while Sharaz had questioned what Wilkinson hoped to gain from the conversation, Wilkinson assured them that that wasn’t the case. </p> <p>“No. Whether it’s white privilege, male domination, whether it’s, you know, criminal activity. I am from the western suburbs of Sydney. I have always been motivated by exactly the same thing, people who deserve to be heard not being heard,” she explained. </p> <p>Wilkinson had more to say on the matter when it came to the likes of former deputy Liberal leader Julie Bishop, sharing her frustration about the “many opportunities” she had to “speak out against the culture”. </p> <p>“The minute she was out of there [she said], ‘oh it’s really sexist’,” Wilkinson added. “I tried to get her on the record with that so many times when she could’ve actually effected change, and she wouldn’t.”</p> <p>And now, despite the leaked recording - which was handed over by Channel 10 under subpoena during the criminal trial, with more shared on TV than in court - Wilkinson has released a statement to declare that she did not approach the politicians in question. </p> <p>“Nor did I speak to any other politicians, their minders or apparatchiks,” she said.</p> <p>The audio came up during Sunrise as well, when Natalie Barr asked their entertainment commentator, Peter Ford, whether or not the recording might be a problem down the line. </p> <p>“Was that coaching?” she asked. “Or was that a journalist talking before the interview?”</p> <p>Ford agreed that it was a fine line, then added, “but I generally think when someone says, ‘I don’t want to put words in your mouth,’ that is exactly what they want to do.”</p> <p><em>Images: Getty</em></p>

News

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Sam Mac, Nat Barr and Lisa Wilkinson on Kochie’s departure

<p>Kochie's breakfast show colleagues, and former rivals, have shared their well wishes for the veteran TV presenter after his shock retirement announcement. </p> <p>On Monday morning's episode of <em>Sunrise</em>, Kochie announced he would be stepping back from the show, with his last day in the hosting chair to be June 9th. </p> <p>Viewers were shocked by the retirement announcement, as Sunrise social media accounts were flooded with messages from loyal viewers. </p> <p>Kochie also received messages of support from his famous friends, as Lisa Wilkinson congratulated him on his astonishing career in the media. </p> <p>She wrote on Twitter, “Huge congrats to @kochie_online on a stellar 21yrs on @sunriseon7.”</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Huge congrats to <a href="https://twitter.com/kochie_online?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@kochie_online</a> on a stellar 21yrs on <a href="https://twitter.com/sunriseon7?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@sunriseon7</a></p> <p>I was lucky enough to work with Kochie in my early brekky TV years &amp; he really is all class. His generosity on &amp; off camera continuing long after I left to join <a href="https://twitter.com/TheTodayShow?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@TheTodayShow</a></p> <p>Enjoy those sleep-ins Kochie.👏👏👏</p> <p>— Lisa Wilkinson (@Lisa_Wilkinson) <a href="https://twitter.com/Lisa_Wilkinson/status/1662979090020986881?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">May 29, 2023</a></p></blockquote> <p>“I was lucky enough to work with Kochie in my early brekky TV years &amp; he really is all class. His generosity on &amp; off camera continuing long after I left to join @TheTodayShow."</p> <p>"Enjoy those sleep-ins Kochie.”</p> <p>Nat Barr paid tribute to her co-host later on Monday morning's show, sharing that she and Kochie have been working side by side for 20 years. </p> <p>"The show would not be what it is today without you. It’s been an amazing ride and we’re going to celebrate that in the next two weeks,” Barr said on air, referring to Koch’s last day.</p> <p>“It was not just me who was crying – it was so you as well. Don’t blame it on me."</p> <p><em>Sunrise</em> newsreader Edwina Bartholomew also shared the impact Kochie has had on her career, saying it had been the "greatest pleasure" to work together.</p> <p>“He is one-of-a-kind. Exactly the same on TV as he is off-air,” she wrote on Instagram. </p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/Cszf-lrhmns/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/Cszf-lrhmns/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Edwina Bartholomew (@edwina_b)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>“An incredible mentor to so many of us at @sunriseon7. My very first job on the show was helping him locate a suitably awful and vaguely appropriate ‘Joke of the Day.’”</p> <p>“I will always look up to him (literally) as a broadcaster but mostly as a father and grandfather. Family is everything to Kochie, and it’s so wonderful he now gets to spend more time with Lib and the kids.”</p> <p><em>Sunrise’s</em> sports presenter Mark Beretta also sent his well wishes to Kochie online. </p> <p>“Kochie, you have made an enormous contribution to changing the entire tone of breakfast TV for the better,” Beretta wrote </p> <p>“Your generosity, honesty and care for others has made a massive impact on so many. I could never have wished for a better mentor and mate. Love you so much mate. Enjoy this new chapter and thanks so much for all you have given us over so many years.”</p> <p><em>Sunrise</em> weather reporter Sam Mac shared an exchange between him and Kochie after Mac's very first day on the job in 2015. </p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/Cszim-YyO3C/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/Cszim-YyO3C/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Sam Mac (@sammacinsta)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The supportive message praised Mac's weather reporting, as Mac captioned the screenshot, “This was my FIRST Day EVER on <em>Sunrise</em>!” Sam captioned the screenshot. “I didn’t even have the job yet... I had no idea if I fitted in or if I’d bombed spectacularly.”</p> <p>“The only piece of feedback I got that day was from the star of the show, Kochie! (he went to the trouble of finding my number). It may seem like a simple gesture, but in the cutthroat biz of TV, this level of support &amp; kindness is surprisingly rare."</p> <p>“That message meant so much to me, and tells you everything about Kochie’s character.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Instagram </em></p>

TV

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Lisa Wilkinson's rare appearance with huge line-up of Aussie stars

<p dir="ltr">Lisa Wilkinson has made a rare appearance at the <em>Tina Turner Musical</em> opening night in Sydney on Thursday.</p> <p dir="ltr">The former <em>Project </em>panellist looked effortlessly chic as she walked the red carpet in a black tailored suit and white blouse, which she accessorised with a floral necklace and pink clutch.</p> <p dir="ltr">This is Wilkinson’s second public appearance since she last attended the <em>Goddess: Power, Glamour, Rebellion</em> exhibition in Melbourne early April.</p> <p dir="ltr">The veteran Australian broadcaster led the arrivals at the star-studded event where fellow TV hosts Melissa Doyle and Kerri-Anne Kennerley were also in attendance.</p> <p dir="ltr">Melissa Doyle rocked a semi-sheer black dress that she accessorised with a pair of black strappy heels and a black clutch.</p> <p dir="ltr">Kerri-Anne Kennerley rocked a more colourful look with a glittery pink top and a black leather jacket that had vibrant floral details embroidered on it.</p> <p dir="ltr">The musical, which highlights Tina Turner’s greatest hits and explores the story of how she turned into a rock ‘n roll star, was attended by a who's who of Aussie stars and influencers.</p> <p dir="ltr">The stars and influencers in attendance included:<em> The Block</em>’s Mitch Edwards and Mark McKie, former <em>E-Street</em> actress Melissa Tkautz, Richard Wilkins and his partner, Nicola Dale, and many more.</p> <p dir="ltr"> </p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Images: Getty</em></p>

Beauty & Style

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Lisa Wilkinson launches dispute into Logies speech advice

<p>TV presenter Lisa Wilkinson has lodged a new submission to an inquiry into how the rape trial against Bruce Lehrmann was handled, with a focus on the circumstances surrounding her controversial Logies speech. </p> <p>The probe was announced in 2022 by the ACT government and was to be fronted by Walter Sofronoff KC. At the time of the announcement, it was also stressed that the probe would was about not recontesting Brittany Higgins’ rape allegation, but instead about the conduct of the criminal justice agencies. </p> <p>And in April 2023, <em>news.com.au</em> confirmed that Lisa Wilkinson had made a submission, which had not yet been made public, that outlined her experience with Director of Public Prosecutions Shane Drumgold prior to her speech at the Logie Awards - the same speech that ultimately saw the trial be delayed. </p> <p>As the publication noted, Channel 10 and their lawyers have disputed allegations that the DPP “expressly warned” Wilkinson against her address at the awards ceremony. </p> <p>This was reportedly seen in a letter leaked after the trial - one sent to the ACT Supreme Court - that saw Channel 10’s Executive Vice President Beverly McGarvey declare “neither Ms Wilkinson nor the Network Ten Senior Legal Counsel present at the conference with the DPP on June 15 2022 understood that they had been cautioned that Ms Wilkinson giving an acceptance speech at the Logie Awards could result in an application being made to the court to vacate the trial date.</p> <p>“Had they understood that a specific warning had been given, Ms Wilkinson would not have given that speech.”</p> <p>Wilkinson had been accepting an award for ‘Outstanding News Coverage or Public Affairs Report’ for her coverage of Brittany Higgins’ sexual assault allegations, and in the wake of the former <em>The Project </em>host’s words, the trial was delayed from June until October. </p> <p>Lucy McCallum, ACT Chief Justice, moved the dates “with gritted teeth” after Lehrmann’s defence team made a request following the speech and the intense media coverage that followed. </p> <p>“Unfortunately, however, the recent publicity [of the speech] does, in my view, change the landscape,’’ McCallum said. </p> <p>“Because of its immediacy, its intensity and its capacity to obliterate the important distinction between an allegation that remains untested at law.</p> <p>“For those reasons, regrettably and with gritted teeth, I have concluded that the trial date of 27 June towards which the parties have been carefully steering must be vacated.”</p> <p>Wilkinson had reportedly sought advice from DPP Shane Drumgold in 2021 to go over the evidence that she would present at trial, with a note from the meeting stating that Wilkinson had been given an opportunity to ask any questions she might have had. </p> <p>It was then that Wilkinson brought up her Logie nomination, though she reportedly noted that she didn’t believe she was in with a real chance of winning, as the show was being held by a ‘rival’ television network. </p> <p>As <em>news.com.au </em>reported, the DPP stopped Wilkinson from presenting her speech then and there, as he could neither approve nor offer her any advice regarding it, telling Wilkinson that “we are not speech editors.”</p> <p>“Notwithstanding that clear and appropriate warning, upon receiving the award, Ms Wilkinson gave a speech in which she openly referred to and praised the complainant in the present trial,” Justice McCallum said of the situation.</p> <p>“Unsurprisingly, the award, and the content of the speech have been the subject of further commentary.”</p> <p><em>Images: Getty</em></p>

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“My dad was a brute”: Dicko reveals tough upbringing

<p>Ian “Dicko” Dickinson has bared all on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here! in sharing his tough upbringing.</p> <p>The former Australian Idol judge, 60, spoke about growing up with a “brutal” father, who was part of the special forces unit of the British Army.</p> <p>“My dad was a brute. He spent five years in the SAS in Malaysia in the 1950s and I never got on with my dad that well,” he told his fellow jungle goers.</p> <p>“He wasn’t a great dad and [he was] pretty violent. All through my childhood, I’ve seen him destroy one, two, three blokes in a fight. He’s a little bloke, [but] he used to box for the SAS as well and he was a weapon.”</p> <p>The 60-year-old revealed his grandmother was just as tough. He opened up about a violent incident where she stabbed her own son, Dicko’s father, in the back.</p> <p>“[My dad’s] got a stab wound in his back that I assumed was from the army and he told me later in life it was from his mum. He wound her up so much that she turned around with a bread knife and went for him … and she stuck it in his back.”</p> <p>Dicko went on to tell his campmates that he’d never forged a relationship with his father but wanted things to be different for his children. So, he tried to facilitate a relationship between them and their grandfather.</p> <p>“I thought, ‘Well, I’ve got kids now. Maybe they should know their granddad?’” he said, revealing he purchased his father's plane ticket from Italy to visit the family in Geneva while they were living there.</p> <p>”But he behaved really badly. I did that a couple more times and every time I paid for him to come back, he just behaved worse and worse. Then when I moved to Australia, I thought, ‘Actually, I don’t need him in my life’, so I just cut him off.”</p> <p>Despite the estrangement, Dicko thanks his father for inspiring him to do better in life.</p> <p>“My mum was my angel, but he was my driving force,” he said. “He never provided for the family, and I always said I’m going to provide for my family.”</p> <p>Later on, Dicko confessed he doesn’t hold any ill feelings against his dad because everyone has their good points and bad points.</p> <p>He said his father “was a fabulous entertainer, so if I’ve inherited any of those things from him, I guess I’ll accept them with good grace as well.”</p> <p><em>Image credit: Instagram</em></p>

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Neighbours reveals which stars are moving back to Ramsay Street

<p>New details have emerged over which <em>Neighbours</em> cast members will be returning to Ramsay St when the series launches on Amazon’s FreeVee late 2023. </p> <p>The show - axed after 27 years on air - will benefit from the presence of a few fan favourite faces, with Annie Jones, Rebekah Elmaloglou, Georgie Stone, and Tim Kano reprising their roles as Jane Harries, Terese Willis, Mackenzie Hargreaves, and Leo Tanaka respectively. </p> <p>And for those hoping to see Ramsay St’s iconic faces in the mix again, have no fear, Ian Smith will be returning at Harold Bishop. He will, however, only be returning as a guest, along with April Rose Pengilly (the actress behind Chloe Brennan), and Melissa Bell (Lucy Robinson). </p> <p>The announcement is not the first to delight fans of the long-running soap, with the likes of Stefan Dennis (Paul Robinson), Jackie Woodburne (Susan Kennedy), Alan Fletcher (Karl Kennedy), and Ryan Moloney (Toadie Rebecchi) already having confirmed their commitment to the revival. </p> <p>Georgie Stone took to Instagram to share the news of her return, along with a series of snaps with her fellow cast members. </p> <p>“Ramsay Street here we come… (again!),” she captioned the image, noting her excitement and that fans should “stay tuned”.</p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/CpNEXARrsfH/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CpNEXARrsfH/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Georgie Stone (@georgiestone)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Fans were thrilled with the news, and showered Georgie with their enthusiasm in the comments - a few, however, were miffed that they’d been through an entire finale only to have to pick it all back up again. </p> <p>“Fantastic to see the familiar favourites all coming back!” gushed one fan. “Can't wait for <em>Neighbours</em> to start back again! Honestly, I barely watch TV anymore without my daily fix of Neighbours.”</p> <p>“Yes, can't wait for watch <em>Neighbours </em>again,” echoed one. </p> <p>“Cannot wait to have you back on our screens,” wrote another.</p> <p>And in a comment that appeared to speak for the masses, one declared “love that you guys are all back!” </p> <p>The news was also shared to Neighbours’ official twitter account, with a special video from the cast members to commemorate the announcement. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">We're so excited to announce that Annie Jones, Georgie Stone, Rebekah Elmaloglou and Tim Kano will be reprising their roles in the new episodes of <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Neighbours?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Neighbours</a> later this year! 🎉✨ Plus we will have special guest appearances by Ian Smith, April Rose Pengilly &amp; Melissa Bell! <a href="https://t.co/6ZLKkmKJWE">pic.twitter.com/6ZLKkmKJWE</a></p> <p>— Neighbours (@neighbours) <a href="https://twitter.com/neighbours/status/1630529084013834240?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">February 28, 2023</a></p></blockquote> <p><em>Neighbours</em>’ producers have announced that the series will not be jumping around with its timeline, instead picking up where the finale left off. </p> <p>The series is set to go into production in the next few months, with new episodes likely in the spring - Australians will be able to catch the first-run episodes on Channel 10, and one week later on Amazon Prime Video. </p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

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"Overlooked": Ian 'Dicko' Dickson miffed at Australian Idol reboot

<p>Dicko is reportedly feeling snubbed after he wasn’t asked to appear on the Australian Idol reboot. The former judge was one of the originals on the panel when the show first aired in 2003. </p> <p>Dicko, 59, is said to be particularly jealous because his former co-star, Marcia Hines, will be making a guest appearance on the new judging panel. </p> <p>“Dicko was always known as ‘the mean judge’ but producers are keen for Marcia to step up as the tough and controversial judge this time,” a source told <a href="https://www.newidea.com.au/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">New Idea</a>.</p> <p>“However, the decision has left Dicko feeling a bit hurt as he feels like he has been overlooked by the series.”</p> <p>The other original Australian Idol judges consisted of Dicko, Marcia Hines and former pop star Mark Holden. </p> <p>Marcia Hines will be a guest judge on Tuesday, filling in for the temporarily absent judge, Meghan Trainor, 29. </p> <p>Dicko gave a tell-all interview back in 2021, weighing in on the show being potentially rebooted after being taken off the air in 2009.</p> <p>Speaking to the <a href="https://podcasts.apple.com/au/podcast/tv-reload/id1546841378">TV Reload podcast</a>, he said, “To be honest, they should have second thoughts.”</p> <p>“There's no guarantee that because it was an iconic television show 18 years ago, that it's going to do the business now,” he added. </p> <p>Dicko’s told the podcast that he felt Channel 7 should reconsider the reboot. </p> <p>The new judging panel consists of Meghan Trainor, Harry Connick Jr, Amy Shark and Kyle Sandilands. </p> <p>Earlier last year, there were reports that Sandilands would not appear own the show if he had to work with Dicko. </p> <p>“Kyle Sandilands will agree to be on Seven's revived Australian Idol if he can sign the contract live on-air + won't work with Osher Gunsberg, Ian "Dicko" Dickson, Marcia Hines & Mark Holden.” </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Elsewhere, there are reports that KIIS shock jock and new dad Kyle Sandilands will agree to be on Seven's revived Australian Idol if he can sign the contract live on-air + won't work with Osher Gunsberg, Ian "Dicko" Dickson, Marcia Hines & Mark Holden.</p> <p>— SydneyCityTV (@SydneyCityTV) <a href="https://twitter.com/SydneyCityTV/status/1559367867652775937?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">August 16, 2022</a></p></blockquote> <p>There have been no comments made by the Seven Network about Dicko’s emotional response. </p>

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