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Diorama drama: How a little project became a big problem

MINIATURE MAYHEM: Norman Tough's personal project is causing some serious headaches.
MINIATURE MAYHEM: Norman Tough's personal project is causing some serious headaches. Jacob Carson

HE'S been working on it on-and-off for about four months now, but Gympie resident Norman Tough's miniature project has run up against some difficulties.

It's fairly straight-forward - a re-creation of a farm and feedlot he's building on a table in the common area of his block of units.

"I've been doing this stuff for a few years now. I remember making a little thing out of paddle pop sticks once," the 79-year-old said.

The current undertaking is a little more complex though, with Norman slowly piecing together the project with wood, glue and patience.

But the craftsmanship hasn't exactly wowed everybody else in the unit complex, with a number of complaints by other tenants being made about Norman and his "disruptive" behaviour.

"It hadn't been a problem for months," he said.

"I've been living here for years and in that time I've barely seen the area get used at all."

A letter, delivered to Norman by the Department of Housing and Public Works, said the complaints were being investigated about "abusive behaviour to other tenants and to your use of the common barbecue area".

The potential ramifications for the investigation could be quite serious - including Norman losing his tenancy.

A spokesman for the Department of Housing and Public Works said they were working to resolve the issue.

"(We're) committed to encouraging a safe, healthy and peaceful environment for all tenants," he said.

"This requires tenants to respect their neighbours and be mindful that common areas of residential complexes are for shared use and enjoyment of everyone."

Not willing to acquiesce and unable to move the work into his home, Norman says he's remaining firm in his decision to push back.

Topics:  department of housing and public works dispute gympie show hosuing commission

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