Giles Street Medical Centre

While Desmond completed his doctorate, Lynette enrolled for an Education degree. 

She switched to Social Work when Desmond opted to enter the newly established JCU medical school in 2000 rather than carry out post-graduate research at the Australian Institute of Marine Science.

When Desmond graduated with his M.B. and B.S. at the end of 2005, Lynette had completed her Bachelor of Social Work and had most of the requirements for a Bachelor of Education. 

She picked up the remaining units while Desmond completed his internship in Darwin (2006-07) and spent a six-month deployment in East Timor in 2008.

From there the couple moved to Katherine, where Desmond was employed at the Giles Street Medical Centre while he completed his General Practitioner qualifications.

When Dr Brendan Trimble, the founder of the GSMC retired in 2014, Ballantyne Property Holdings bought the practice and Desmond became the nominal proprietor. He ran it as a co-operative, 'employing' three other doctors. 

Ballantyne Property Holdings also bought into neighbouring commercial properties and leased them out. 

Working on the principle that the Medical Centre was what brought most of the customers into the precinct, while the other businesses paid a standard commercial rate, the Medical Centre's lease involved a peppercorn rent.

Ballantyne & Chin paid the Medical Centre's bills, met the weekly running costs, and invoiced the individual practitioners for one-quarter of the monthly expenses. 

Ballantyne's share was paid through Ballantyne Medical, into which Desmond channelled all his medical earnings. 

© Ian Hughes 2017