TAKING ACTION: William, 6, and Jeremy, 9, Lister with their gel blasters.
TAKING ACTION: William, 6, and Jeremy, 9, Lister with their gel blasters.

6yo pens ‘touching’ letter for gel blaster club

A PLEA from the son of Member for Southern Downs James Lister for a gel blaster club "touched" the hearts of councillors.

A letter penned by 6-year-old William Lister asked Southern Downs Mayor Vic Pennisi to "help set up a gel blaster club and range" in our region.

The letter comes after his father petitioned in parliament against "ill-thought" new laws, which would see it illegal to own the toy firearm unless you were a member of a relevant organisation - of which there are none on the Southern Downs.

Mr Lister said "precocious" William had his eyes on a club months before the bill was passed.

"Before the council election William approached Vic, who is William's godfather, and said 'When you're going to the be the mayor, can you build a gel blaster club?" he said.

"When the bill came up … it came to the fore then.

"He's pretty upset about the idea the government would do this, so it's a bit an early exposure to politics."

The "proud" dad said William, a gel blaster enthusiast, already had diagrams for how the gel blaster range would look in his eyes.

"Like any boy, he loves playing cops and robbers, like I did with cap guns, and my other son Jeremy is in the same boat," he said.

"For a long time, they've wanted a place to play with other kids with gel blasters and not just at home."

In today's meeting, Mayor Pennisi said there were several possible options for a site and he welcomed William to attend the next council meeting to further present his idea.

"It's great to see youth come to us with their ideas and I want to give every opportunity to engage with us in whatever way, shape, or form," he said.

Councillor Ross Bartley further endorsed the letter, stating the recent unveiling of the Warwick learn to ride park demonstrated what could happen when kids took community action.

"From little things, big things grow," he said.