09 February 2017



Last week we said goodbye to another Labor stalwart from Blair.

Clive Claus joined the Labor Party in January 1957. There are just three longer-serving members of the Labor Party in Blair ahead of him.

Clive was born in Marburg in 1927 and raised in Haigslea, some six kilometres away. These townships are located in the rural and mining regions in the western part of greater Ipswich.

Clive married the love of his life, Dorothy, in 1956 and settled with his wife in Rosewood, moving a little over 10 kilometres from Haigslea.

It was in Rosewood that Clive and Dorothy, or 'Dos', as he called her, remained. They were the unofficial Mayor and Mayoress of the township of Rosewood. Clive and Dos were married 61 years and had three children - Russell; John, also known as Ben; and Sharon – along with 11 grandchildren, one of who is now deceased, and one great-grandchild. Dos was not only the love of Clive's life but became his full-time carer after a car accident in 2014.

Clive loved poultry-fancying. He became recognised nationally and internationally for his knowledge and breeding skills. His involvement led to life membership of the Rosewood Show Society. He even has a road named in his honour in Haigslea: Claus Road. He could be found in the big poultry shed at Rosewood Show or sitting on the veranda holding court outside the Clive Claus official bar at the Rosewood Show.

He was an intelligent man but was unable attain higher education due to the need to work. As the eldest child, he left school and worked in the local store. He also worked in the local mines around Ipswich and Rosewood, a dangerous profession, and he was fortunate to avoid the Box Flat disaster in 1972.

Clive was a working-class man, a Labor man, a union man. He believed passionately in the union movement. He was a great friend of former federal Oxley MP Bill Hayden and former state member for Ipswich West Don Livingstone. Clive held executive positions in the Party locally at all levels. Last year I had the honour of presenting Clive with his life membership of the Australian Labor Party.

He was a source of wise advice to me. I always listened attentively to Clive's words. He was the truest of true believers and he will be greatly missed. He was respected and admired. He loved a yarn and to reminisce and would regularly hold court. He was deeply loved and appreciated for his life, his work and who he was. He will be tending the chooks in heaven - that is what I think he will be doing now!

Vale Clive Claus, a great man.