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The family of an 84-year-old grandmother who survived three days after becoming lost in the wild and remote Stirling Range south of Perth has thanked searchers for finding her against all odds. Relatives, who operate the Mt Trio Bush Camp & Caravan Park, were overjoyed after being told she had been found safe and well after her ordeal during which she had no food or water. Son Simon Byrne praised "all the kind people" who helped find his mother. "My heartfelt thanks to you all," he said. "Words cannot express the relief we are feeling right now. It was a mammoth effort by all involved." Grandson Blair Coatsworth said the news came after the family feared she was dead. "The police officer walked over to us and we thought we were getting the worst ... then he hit us with the best," he said. Mrs Byrne was found weak and exhausted by a police sergeant on a dirt track about 4km from where she was last seen. (Photo courtesy WA Police): Mrs Byrne is loaded into an ambulance after her ordeal.

Queensland Government launches $3m tourism campaign in bid to fill outback camping grounds and hotels with travellers.

More than 40 people caught with drugs, including cannabis, MDMA, cocaine and LSD, during this weekend's Festival of the Sun music event at Port Macquarie Breakwall Holiday Park in NSW. On-site medical services treated about 40 revellers for "various issues", police said.

Kershaw Gardens signDECEMBER 16:
Rockhampton Regional Counci has been ordered to pay Caravan Parks Association of Queensland's legal costs following the Kershaw Gardens ruling which will bring an end to free overnight camping from next February. The Environment and Planning Court's Judge Williamson says the association had "no alternative" but to take proceedings against the council. "This has come at a cost that would not have been incurred had the council acted in accordance with the planning law it has a duty to uphold in its local government area," he said in his decision just published. Costs are still to be assessed but Judge Williamson rejected the council's submission they should be limited to 50 percent.

Patricia Byrne: missing in WADECEMBER 16:

UPDATE Sunday pm: Mrs Bryne located by emergency services and taken to medical centre for "medical evaluation".

A full-scale land and air search was underway for a missing 84-year-old grandmother in WA. The frantic family of Patricia Byrne, who operate the Mt Trio Bush Camp & Caravan Park in the Stirling Ranges, is concerned for her welfare. Police have brought in additional forces, including divers and the air wing, to help in the mammoth search. It is believed Mrs Byrne was walking on Mount Trio and was last seen around on Thursday morning by a family member. Police are anxious to speak with anyone who saw or provided a lift to Mrs Byrne. They would also like to hear from anyone who saw a white Toyota Tarago in Salt River Road, Formby Road South and Chester Pass Road. Members of Mrs Byrne's family said they appreciated the efforts made to trace the grandmother. "We are very thankful of the love and support from our friends and family," they told media.

Police in SA today recovered a stolen caravan, quad bike and weapons at Melrose. Acting on information received from the public, they went to the local showgrounds and located a Jayco caravan and quad bike which disappeared from a Riverton address between July and December. A man and woman were found living inside the caravan. A search uncovered an air pistol, taser, pepper spray and other items suspected of being stolen. A 32-year-old man will appear at Port Pirie Magistrates Court on Monday. Meanwhile, a woman is assisting police with their inquiries.

Cyclone Owen mapDECEMBER 14:
Police have urged campers, caravanners and other outdoor-loving tourists in Queensland's far north to head for safety as Cyclone Owen barrels towards them. "The shires of Carpentaria, Croydon, Etheridge and Mareeba are popular destinations for those who love their camping, fishing and four-wheel-driving," Senior Constable Russ Parker said. "As such, police are appealing to people currently involved in those activities within those areas to consider the impending dangers possibly associated with TC Owen," he said. It was anticipated the wet weather system would more than likely result in flooding which could easily strand people and vehicles for an indefinite period in many of these locations. "Consideration should be given to making immediate preparations to leave and return home or to larger centres," Sen Cons Parker added.

Australia's biggest builder of RVs Jayco is seeking expressions of interest from school leavers keen to take on three-year Jayco cadetships at its factory in Victoria.

Adelaide Plains Council has invited written submissions over plans to grant a 20-year lease of part of Mallala Oval Campground to the Mallala Lions Club. It would include the toilet/shower block.

BIG4 Cania Gorge Holiday Park in Queensland, winner the BIG4 Online Highest Revenue Growth award at the BIG4 National Conference, is on the market for $6 million.

Final arrangements underway at five Victorian caravan parks which will host the Great Australian Caravan Park Country Music Showcase tour this month. The Jayco-sponsored events featuring alt-country/Americana artists Gretta Ziller and Andrew Swift will hit Anglesea Family Caravan Park on the 27th, Ocean Grove Holiday Park on the 28th, Kangerong Holiday Park on the 29th, Inverloch Foreshore Camping Reserve on the 30th and Marlo Ocean Views on the 31st. There will be another 16 concerts in Victoria and NSW in January.

SA's District Council of Mount Remarkable is seeking two community representatives for the Melrose Caravan & Tourist Park Committee. Meanwhile, it reports that the cement slab for a replacement shelter and barbeque at the park has been laid.

Xmmas vandals at Esperance caravan parkDECEMBER 12:
Police in WA are hunting vandals who wrecked Christmas decorations at Bathers Paradise Caravan Park, Esperance. They have released CCTV pictures of the hoodlums at work shortly before midnight on December 1. Anyone with information is urged to contact Esperance Police Station on (08) 9079 8999 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. The park declined to comment when contacted by Caravanning News. "We have moved on," a spokesperson said.

Police were today hunting two men who robbed a family of German tourists at a NSW caravan park. The couple, in their 30s, and their infant child were asleep in their campervan when the villains struck at the Nambucca Heads park overnight. The crooks fled after a "physical altercation" in which the father suffered minor injuries. A stolen wallet was thrown at the tourists. One of the offenders is of Caucasian appearance, with brown hair and missing teeth. The second is described as being of Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander appearance with a solid build and dreadlocks.

Hold my Hand campaignDECEMBER 12:
The Little Blue Dinosaur Foundation has urged parents to take extra care of their children at busy caravan parks this festive season. The foundation's mission is to educate and protect children from the ever present danger associated with roadways and motor vehicles "Holiday parks are the perfect place for children to explore the outdoors, but when cars and caravans are constantly on the move, children are at risk," it warns. Its latest initiative advises parents to always hold hands with children under 10.

Shares in Fleetwood, which offloaded its loss-making Coromal and Windsor caravans range to Apollo Tourism and Leisure, opened at a two-year low of $1.86 today. This matched a fall in the ASX to a 23-month low yesterday, weighed down by the major banks. Apollo will begin building the caravans at its Brisbane factory from next month.

Woman who stole 4WD and caravan from Westbrook garage in Toowoomba, Queensland, in September while high on drugs jailed for 18 months.

Three people died in a horror smash on one of WA's most dangerous roads. A 4WD reportedly drifted onto the wrong side of the Indian Ocean Road at speed and caused a camper-trailer to overturn before smashing head-on into a miniibus full of Chinese tourists about 30km north of Lancelin.

Tarra Caravan ParkDECEMBER 8:
A man escaped with minor injuries after fighting off three armed thugs who raided his caravan in the early hours. Police said the trio brandished a knife and a piece of wood when they forced their way into the victim's caravan at Tara Caravan Park on the Western Downs in Queensland. "He managed to fight the three men off, forcing them to flee the scene," a spokesperson said. Damage was caused to the caravan door and window. Investigations are continuing.

Members of the Australian Caravan Club raised $5000 at their annual muster to help drought affected farmers. "As a group of senior RV travellers covering the four corners of this great country, our members have seen the devastation caused by drought," chairman Craig Humphrey said. Club members are now being asked how best to distribute the money to needy farmers.

Coach Built Caravans logoDECEMBER 8:
Paul Langdon of Vince & Associates has been appointed liquidator of family owned Victoria-based Coach Built Caravans following an order of the Federal Court in Melbourne. The Deputy Commissioner of Taxation had applied to the court for an order for the company to be wound up.

Man, 64, charged with murder after another man and a woman, both in their 60s, were found with horrific injuries at Calliope Caravan Park south-west of Gladstone in Queensland. Police discovered a bloodied tomahawk near the scene.

Family-owned and operated Colorado Caravans has failed to trade itself out of administration and is now in liquidation.

A man, 64, is helping police after two people died from significant injuries at the Calliope Caravan Park in central Queensland. Police were called to the Stowe Road park when a 63-year-old man was found with significant head injuries outside his caravan. He was taken to Gladstone Hospital where he was pronounced dead. Investigations by police led them to a nearby caravan where the body of a 60-year-old woman was located with significant injuries. Forensic officers were examining the scene today. Police said the victims were known to each other but were not related or in a relationship. Detective Inspector Darrin Shadlow said: "Our investigations to date indicate that the incidents may have occurred sometime between 3.30 and 4.40pm yesterday and we are appealing for anyone who may have noticed or heard something or seen anyone suspicious, or something out of the ordinary, to contact us." Park manager Matthew Wilson told Caravanning News the whole park was in shock. "You couldn't get a better friend or tenant (referring to the man)," he said.  Mr Wilson said the woman had lived with her pet dog which had now been collected by her family.

Shady Gully Caravan Park at Mallacoota in Victoria on the market for $2.75m.

District Council of Mount Remarkable in SA is seeking contract relief managers for Melrose Caravan Park in the Southern Flinders Ranges.

Ingenia Communities, which operates an Australian chain of lifestyle and holiday parks, appoints Sun Communities chairman and chief executive Gary Shiffman to its board.

Thieves made off with a white Roadstar Explorer caravan registered number 369QTB from Dimbulah in far north Queensland over the weekend.

Man, 34, charged after tourist's backpack stolen from cabin at Cairns Holiday Park in Queensland.



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the prior written permission of Dennis Amor.

Copyright 2005 Dennis Amor
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