BOGGO – S2 E4 – Documenting SLIM

BOGGO – S 2 E 4  –  Documenting SLIM

In this episode Research Co-ordinator Sue Olsen is talking with Director Kate Jorgensen about the short documentary SLIM that has been made at Boggo Road Gaol documenting the life of the notorious Arthur Ernest Halliday, otherwise known as Slim.
Kate shares with the audience the process of developing the documentary and we discuss the upcoming launch date for SLIM.


Over the past few episodes we have been sharing a few pieces of the story of Arthur Ernest Halliday otherwise known as SLIM.   In July 2017, a small documentary crew from the SAE institute approached us at Boggo Road Gaol looking for a suitable subject for their short documentary assignment as part of their degree.    Of course, We shared the story of the notorious escapee and convicted murderer Slim Halliday.

Over two months, they researched, planned and executed a remarkable short piece.  Each week having to pitch their story and share their progress to their class.   With the list of films being shortened each week SLIM was selected as the number one documentary that everyone wanted to work on and be a part of.

Kate Jorgenson, Demi Bird, Alfred Naupoto, Euan Paterson and their incredible cast filmed SLIM at the gaol over a four-day time period… and the whole process took a little over 7 weeks from research and development to completion.

In an exciting first, Gaol Director Jack Sim and Former Journalist and Author Ken Blanch shared the story of SLIM live in front of the camera, with the cast and crew creating the visual scenes for the audience.

In this week’s podcast, Research Co-ordinator Sue Olsen and Film Director Kate Jorgenson talk about the making of the film,  and for the first time we can share the upcoming release date for the film in 2019.

Listen to this week’s episode of BOGGO – The official podcast of Boggo Road Gaol – Here

Did you know that you too can hire the gaol for the purposes of making a film or documentary?

For more information on filming at Boggo and for tour times and prices visit our website

The book – Slim Halliday – The taxi driver killer is available for purchase in the Boggo Road Gaol Shop.

BOGGO S2 E3 Partners in Crime – Halliday Exhibit

BOGGO –  S 2 E3 –  Partners in Crime – Halliday Exhibit.

In this Episode Gaol Director Jack Sim and Research Coordinator Sue Olsen are joined inside by Tiana Adair, Museum Assistant from the Queensland Police Museum – our partners in crime.  Tiana is here to promote our new Crime, Law and Justice Trail and to discuss with us a fascinating exhibition at the museum on Arthur Ernest “Slim” Halliday and reveals how one piece of evidence was crucial in the conviction of Halliday for wilful murder – “Peter the Dog.”

Arthur Ernest Halliday otherwise known as Slim Halliday is one of the most notorious characters in Queensland History.   In Boggo Road Gaol we are regularly  greeted with people who know of Slim , Halliday or are somehow connected with his story.  However the majority of Queenslander’s wouldn’t know that some physical items also remain from the story of the notorious Slim Halliday.

It is one of these items that we are talking about today.


Currently under development in Brisbane is a new Crime and Justice Trail. Boggo Road Gaol is one of the four sites and museums on the trail.   The sites each hold a crucial piece of the story of crime and justice in Queensland.  Covering from the earliest of convicted felons in colonial times through to modern policing and criminal justice.

Our partners in crime and one of the most integral sites on the trail is the Queensland Police Museum located in Roma Street in Brisbane.   The 125 year old museum holds an extensive collection of items related to crime and policing and one of the most crucial pieces of evidence in the Slim Halliday Story.

But let’s step back for a second, we know from our previous episode of BOGGO that Slim Halliday was locked up in Boggo Road Gaol for Housebreaking.   Well Slim actually had three major stages in his notoriety.

Firstly, as a product of the great depression, he was a petty criminal – committing small crimes in his early career that saw him spend numerous short sentences in gaol.

Then the second part of his career where in February 1939 – 80 years ago this month he was sentenced to his first long stint in gaol. Five years.    It was in this second part of his career that he would become known as the Houdini of Boggo Road having escaped twice!

And finally the third stage where he was convicted of the horrible murder of Athol McGowan a taxi driver at Southport.  It is for this murder, Slim Halliday was to serve life in Boggo Road Gaol.

In Episode 3 of BOGGO released today, we talk to Tiana Adair from the Queensland Police Museum where she shares with us the story of the most exciting and pivotal piece of evidence this horrible crime.  Peter the dog.

Want to know more of the story?  Listen to the latest episode of BOGGO for free!

Slim Halliday – The Taxi Driver Killer tells the story of the murder in remarkable depth including images of pieces of evidence involved in the crime, including Peter the Dog. The book is available for purchase from the Boggo Road Gaol Shop.

For more information on Tours and Prices visit our website

To visit our Partners in Crime – The Queensland Police Museum visit


BOGGO – S2 E2 – Halliday-The Early Years

BOGGO –  S2 E2.  Halliday – The Early Years

Arthur Ernest Halliday is one of the most notorious characters ever locked up in Boggo Road Gaol.   Eighty years ago this month, Halliday began a five year term with Hard Labour,  his longest sentence to date by far.

Arthur Ernest Halliday is one of the most notorious characters ever locked up in Boggo Road Gaol.

Eighty years ago this month, Halliday began a five year term with Hard Labour,  his longest sentence to date by far.

Halliday had had a long career of housebreaking prior to 1939 with sentences in both New South Wales and Queensland, including a short sentence in Boggo Road Gaol.

But this time Justice Henchmen threw the book at Halliday convicting him of nine counts of housebreaking in the suburbs of Hamilton, Bowen Hills,  Clayfield and Newstead.   The sentence five years with hard labour was Halliday’s first serious stretch in Gaol.

This sentence was to have a profound effect on the life of Halliday.  This is where his life of crime would truly begin.  It was in Boggo Road Gaol where he would meet other notorious prisoners that would lead him on a path of jail break,  escape and murder.

Listen to S2 Episode 2 of ‘Boggo’ – the official podcast for Boggo Road Gaol.

In this episode of BOGGO Gaol Director Jack Sim and research Co-ordinator Sue Olsen discuss the early years of Arthur Ernest Halliday otherwise known as Slim Halliday.  2019 marks 80 years since Slim came to Boggo Road Gaol for his first serious stretch of time. 

Visit to book tours and events.



BOGGO S2 E1 – Sneak Peek of 2019

‘BOGGO’ – S2 E1.  Sneak Peek of 2019.   

Happy New Year to our listeners and readers alike.   It is fantastic to be finally back for a second season of ‘BOGGO’ the official podcast of Boggo Road Gaol – recorded live inside its walls.


Happy New Year to our listeners and readers alike.   It is fantastic to be finally back for a second season of BOGGO the official podcast of Boggo Road Gaol – recorded live inside its walls.

2019 has a number of significant anniversaries and special events.  We thought perhaps you would like a sneak peek of what we will be discussing this year and for the first time, you will get to influence what we talk about!  There will be more special guests this season too!

Here are just a few of the exciting events that are coming up this year!


The 80th Anniversary of Arthur Ernest Halliday or Slim as he was known doing his first long stretch at Boggo Road.  Five Years for Housebreaking.   Slim is a notorious character.  This month we explore his story a little closer.


Queensland Women’s Week and International Women’s Day.   Look out for a series of events promoting Boggo Road Gaol from a female perspective.

March is also the 30th Anniversary of the Boggo Road Gaol “Fun Run” the greatest mass escape in the Gaol’s history.  It is also the 90th Anniversary of the construction of the Prison Workshops… constructed in 1929 these buildings formed an essential part of prison life.


The Colossus of Boggo Road Gaol – 30th years since Nathan Jones was sent to Boggo Road.  Nathan has gone on to make a successful life in Hollywood for himself.  Keep an eye out for this giant character in April!

For more about what is happening at Boggo Road Gaol in 2019 Listen to S2 E1 of BOGGO 
Gaol Director Jack Sim and Research Co-ordinator Sue Olsen talk about this year’s special anniversaries and important dates.  They also reveal some of the stories that will be covered in this season of BOGGO.
Visit to book tours and events.

‘BOGGO’ – EPISODE #12 – Christmas at Boggo

‘BOGGO’ – EPISODE #12 – Christmas at Boggo.

Salvation Army band at Boggo Road Gaol

Christmas is a magical time of year.  Just as it is on the outside, the prisoners in Boggo Road Gaol, received special gifts as part of the celebration of Christmas.

Prisoners received an extravagant meal, one far beyond their normal rations.

Here is an example of a menu from  1949


Regular prisoners’ rations


12 oz (340 grams) Chops – Breakfast

1 lb (450 grams) Roast Beef – Main Meal (Lunch)

1 lb (450 grams) Plum Pudding

12 oz (340 grams) English Potatoes and Vegetables

Extra Tea

Extra Sugar

Extra Bread

Tobacco Ration increased from 2oz to 4oz in Christmas Week.  (56 grams to 113 grams)

While the prisoners were excited about the extra food, it was the extra tobacco ration that was the gift of the season.   You see, Tobacco is the currency inside prison.  Tobacco is used to pay for everything, from a new toothbrush, to passing a message to a mate in a different section, even sneaking a message to the outside.   Tobacco rations were everything to the prisoner… and having double the ration… well that was gold, Literally.

Prisoners were entertained too!  The Salvation Army Band attended the prison each year, providing the prisoners with musical accompaniment for their Christmas concert.

To hear more about Christmas inside.. Listen to Episode #12 of ‘Boggo’ – the official podcast for Boggo Road Gaol.


In this episode Gaol Director Jack Sim and Research Coordinator Sue Olsen, discuss what life was like for the Prisoners of Boggo Road at Christmas and how they were permitted rare privileges reserved for special occasions.


Visit to book tours and events.


“BOGGO” Episode #11 – An officer and gentleman – Frank ‘Trooper’ Hills

‘Boggo’ Episode # 11 – An officer and gentleman – Frank ‘Trooper’ Hills.   

An officer and  gentleman – Frank ‘Trooper’ Hills

Frank Hills known as ‘Trooper’ was an officer and a gentleman in the truest sense of the word.  A Boer War and World War One veteran twice wounded at Gallipoli and again in the Somme in France.  Trooper rose through the military ranks to Regimental Sergeant Major, the highest ranked non-commissioned officer in the Australian Army.    Trooper survived the war to become a prison officer and eventually would become involved in one of the greatest conspiracies to kill in Boggo Road Gaol History. The infamous Cyanide Plot.

The Cyanide Plot

Perhaps the most interesting and sensational time of Trooper’s career at Boggo Road was the discovery of the Cyanide Plot of 1940.   A prisoner smuggled a deadly vial of Cyanide under his armpit into Boggo Road Gaol.  It only being discovered on a pat down search of the prisoner before putting him in his cell.   The prisoner shouted to the officers “For god sake tell that man not to open that vial and smell it – it will knock him _____ out”.  It was soon discovered that the vial contained enough Cyanide to kill 50 people!



Listen to Episode #11 of ‘Boggo’ – the official podcast for Boggo Road Gaol.

In this episode, Director Jack Sim, and Research Coordinator Sue are talking about the fascinating life of an officer and gentleman – Frank ‘Trooper’ Hills.

Visit to book tours and events.






“BOGGO” Episode #9 – Victims of Vice

‘BOGGO’ – EPISODE # 9 – VICTIMS OF VICE –The tragic tale of Juett sisters.

Lily Juett

Lily and Minnie Juett were sisters born in Bundaberg, the middle of eight children, in quite an impoverished family.  As soon as they were old enough to pull their weight, the children did work of some sort.   Unfortunately, the family was split up, the father getting into a bit of trouble and ending up in prison.  The children were packaged off to various farms and domestic work.  The girls were sent to work in some of the finest homes in Bundaberg, as domestics.

Lily and Minnie were not too fond of that type of work and really just wanted to be teenagers and have some fun.  Around twelve and fourteen at the time. They weren’t in their new profession very long.  They both got into trouble for stealing from their respective employers and for some improper conduct and general misbehaviour.

Both of them knew that they could not return home, there was nowhere to go anyway. So, they ended up turning to the streets to make their living, they were indeed victims of vice.

Young women in this time, were commonly on the streets, when orphaned or unable to live at home for whatever reason.  Those that exploited these women are often given little more than a fine and a slap on the wrist. The women were not so lucky and found themselves in front of the Court.

Lily and Minnie worked hard and saved their money, occasionally pinching a extra bit from their drunken clientele.  After some time had passed, they managed to pay their fare on a coastal ship to Brisbane. Hoping to change their futures for the better…


Listen to Episode #9 of ‘Boggo’ – the official podcast for Boggo Road Gaol.

In this episode, Research Co-ordinator Sue, and Researcher and Prison Player Anique are going to be talking about the research project currently being undertaken on the female division and we will share with you the tragic tale of the Juett sisters – The Victims of Vice.


Visit to book history tours and events.





Kevin Hayden graduated into the prison service in 1976… Initially at Wacol Prison, but soon he was transferred to the trouble filled Number 2 Division – Boggo Road Gaol.

I started in the service because I wanted better job security and a career.  My father was an officer in the prison service and had encouraged me to apply when my job prospects were not too good.   I worked initially at Wacol Prison and then went on to Boggo Road a little later.

My first impression of Boggo Road was it was an absolute nightmare.  I couldn’t believe how outdated the place was.  The whole place was filthy.  There were rats bigger than cats and Number Two division was just putrid.  There was no sanitation in place there. The conditions for inmates and officers alike was barbaric.  Everyone was frustrated beyond belief.

The trouble there all came to a head in 1988, and a series of riots took place. These times were the most frightening to say the least. Conditions at Boggo Road Gaol had become unbearable and many officers left the job.  I stayed on, it was difficult.  But it was my job, a job I needed to keep.

After an investigation into the conditions into the gaol. The Kennedy Report was released.   The report recommended a number of changes and two div was to be closed for good.

It really was a blessing when the government closed down two division.  At one stage there, there was three inmates in each cell which made tensions very high.  We had rooftop protests, fires and all kinds of other problems.  It was bad, really bad.

When Boggo Road eventually closed completely, I went back to Wacol Prison where I proceeded to work my way up the ranks.  In 1998 I decided that my time inside was up.  I moved to the Gold Coast to start a new life. I had officially resigned after 22 years’ service.

I was proud to have served as a prison officer and made many friends through the job, Officers and Inmates alike. It is a difficult job and sometimes it gets a bad rap.

Listen to Episode #8 of ‘Boggo’ – the official podcast for Boggo Road Gaol.

In this episode, Research Co-ordinator Sue, and former officer Kevin, discuss Kevin’s career in the prisons service and what life was like for an officer on the inside of Boggo Road Gaol during the infamous eighties full of riots, protests and violence.

Visit to book history tours and events.



“BOGGO” – EPISODE #7 –BURGLAR BILL – Notorious thief and safecracker William Thompson in his own words.

William Thompson, known in every state in Australia as Burglar Bill; has been an associate with some of the country’s most notorious criminals.  Some of them cold blooded killers who have ended their days on the gallows.

When first entering a life of crime he thought he could beat the law.  But after twenty-seven years in and out of gaol, in 1937, he finally realised that crime does not pay.  In a rare treat, the Truth newspaper in Brisbane published his full story, perhaps he would tell it best anyhow!


“I can look back on those wasted years- years that I cannot recall to live over again, now that I have learned a bit of sense.  Perhaps, as crooks go, I have had a particularly eventful life; I have met and consorted with many of the ‘big’ men; I have witnessed executions from inside and I have spent some weeks in a cell that once held the famous Ned Kelly.  But those memories are nothing to be proud of.  I am well aware that today I am regarded as one of the most persistent burglars in Australia, and I am certainly not proud of my title “Burglar Bill”.


Listen to Episode #7 of ‘Boggo’ – the official podcast for Boggo Road Gaol.

In this episode, Research Co-ordinator Sue, and tour guide Tom, share the story of the notorious Burglar Bill – William Thompson in his own words as sent to the Truth newspaper on his release in 1937. 

Visit to book history tours and events.



“BOGGO” – EPISODE #6 –THE WHISKEY AU GO GO KILLERS – John Andrew Stuart and James Richard Finch – PART 2.

WARNING: Strong content and language.

The 1st November 2018 marks the 30th Anniversary of James Finch confessing his guilt in relation to the firebombing the Whiskey Au Go Go – to A Current Affair journalist  Jana Wendt – live via satellite from London.

It remains the greatest true crime confession in Australian history. Or was it?

In the now-legendary interview Finch confirmed that the information published days earlier in The Sun newspaper by Chief-of-Staff Dennis Watt was correct. James Finch claimed himself and boxer Tom Hamilton did the deed, while tattooist Billy McKulkin drove the getaway vehicle. Brisbane criminal Vincent O’Dempsey plotted the firebombing. Stuart was paid $5,000 to organise Finch’s involvement.

Jana Wendt asked Finch if he was worried now he had told the truth, that he might be extradited back to Australia to face one of the outstanding murder charges – Stuart and Finch were given life sentences on only one of the 15 counts brought against them. As this was pointed out, Mr Finch retracted his confession, and changed his story yet again, live on TV, to a shocked nation-wide TV audience.

Listen to Episode #6 of ‘Boggo’ – the official podcast for Boggo Road Gaol.

In this episode, Gaol Director Jack Sim, author of “History of Boggo Road Gaol”, and former prison officer John, talk about  James Finch, his character and personality in Brisbane Prison – Part 2 of a two-part story.

Visit to book history tours and events.


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