REAL LIFE ROBINSON CRUSOE… but for how much longer? CASTAWAY LIVING ON AUSTRALIAN ISLAND FOR 20 YEARS FACES EVICTION.
* David Glasheen has been living on Restoration Island off the Australian coast for almost 20 years after he lost £6.5 million on the stock market.
* The Supreme Court in Queensland, Australia has ruled that he must vacate the island after failing lease conditions.
* He was required to develop tourist accommodation and fishing facilities as part of his £13,000 per year lease.
A man living alone on an island like Robinson Crusoe for almost 20 years faces eviction from his castaway oasis.
The Australian man has been living on tiny Restoration Island off the north-eastern coast of Australia since 1993 after the former high-flying Sydney businessman lost £6.5 million in the 1987 stock market crash.
Living off crabs and coconuts, and connected to solar-powered internet, David Glasheen has enjoyed a life of private tranquillity his dog Quasi, calling himself ‘the luckiest bloke in the world’.
Australian Robinson Crusoe: Voluntary castaway David Glasheen has been living as a recluse on a small island off the Australian coast for almost 20 years with his dog Quasi but the island’s directors are trying to evict him.
But the Queensland government is trying to evict the voluntary castaway, in his sixties, after he failed to build a resort on the 1.53ha island, a condition of the lease which allowed him access to the land.
The Queensland Supreme Court recently ruled that the land should be repossessed and that he and his business partners are ‘trespassers’.
He told The Daily Telegraph: ‘This judgement is just horrible.’
Living a reclusive life, Glasheen learnt to be self-sufficient, growing vegetables and brewing his own beer. He also still trades stocks using an online trading account.
He said: ‘You soon learn in the bush to survive. If you don’t you die pretty quickly.
‘It is a fabulous place, I am a lucky bloke to be there.
Lonely in love: Using his solar-powered internet connection Glasheen tried internet dating to find his ‘Girl Friday’ to live with him, using a mannequin to publicise his plight but had no luck.
Broke island lease: The government has ruled that Glasheen must vacate Restoration Island, a 1.52ha oasis, having failed to build tourist accommodation and fishing facilities, a condition of his lease.
‘I have learnt a huge amount. I started to value what is really important. Trust, honesty, respect – simple things.
‘I have learnt that you can do things with very little.’
While he loves his life in paradise, Glasheen does get lonely and several years ago tried internet dating to find ‘Girl Friday’ to live with him. He got hundreds of responses but had no luck in love.
Glasheen said: ‘It gets lonely out here.
‘My only hope is for a mermaid to turn up on the beach.’
A girlfriend had initially moved to the island, 1,500 miles from Queensland capital Brisbane, with Glasheen but found life there too difficult.
He is visited occasionally by passing yachtsmen, kayakers and groups of organic farmers.
Few visitors: Glasheen says sometimes he gets lonely with his dog his only companion but he is occasionally visited by passing yachtsmen, kayakers and organic farmers.
Must vacate: The island’s directors have been trying to evict Glasheen since 2000 and he says that he has ‘no idea’ what he will do if he has to move from the island he has been living on for almost 20 years.
Australian oasis: Restoration Island is 1,500 miles from Queensland capital Brisbane and was named because Captain William Bligh found essential supplies were there that had been set adrift by mutineers on HMS Bounty.
Glasheen leased one third of the island from the Australian Government for £13,000 a year on behalf of Restoration Island Priory Ltd.
The 43-year lease which allowed Glasheen required him and a business partner to develop fishing facilities and tourist accommodation valued at a minimum of £131,000 on the island, a condition which they failed to do.
A Supreme Court judgement said the island’s directors had been trying to get Glasheen to vacate the island since 2000.
The court said: ‘The defendants have wrongly deprived the plaintiff of its asset for over a decade during which time they have enjoyed its benefits.
Glasheen is considering appealing the decision.
Asked what he will do if he is forced to leave his island home he said: ‘I have no idea. I live on now. Tomorrow I might be dead.’
Restoration Island was named after Captain William Bligh found essential supplies that had been set adrift by mutineers of the HMS Bounty.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2193378/David-Glasheen-Australian-castaway-island-faces-eviction.html#ixzz24ZEpkdu7 — with Tina Behnke and Brigitte Guetter.