to 32,000 monthly
For full list, click above
Man, 25, charged after a caravan was stolen from Clontarf north of Brisbane on Feb 4. It was later located at Landsborough.
Award-winning Queanbeyan Riverside Tourist Park in NSW will pull down the shutters today after being managed for two decades by Kevin Pritzler.
Click on BREAKING NEWS above to see full list of stories.
* $250,000 caravans heist
in Queensland ... 19,654
Shock figures on overweight caravans ... 19,522 people reached.
Car and caravan destroyed in Queensland roadside blaze ...
Caravanner escapes serious injury as rig rolls in NSW ...
Sunland Caravans opens factory to the public ... 14,782 people reached.
Disappointment over New Age dealership closure ...
11,749 people reached.
Horror crash claims lives of two caravanners in NSW ...
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
The dirt on giving the finger
on outback roads
the rubbish written about the finger wave.
father told me it was what you did when a car/truck approached you
on an outback dirt road.
Invariably you anticipate rocks being thrown up, so you push your
finger on the inside of the windscreen to dampen the force of the
The roads have improved, but the habit
Hunt is on to find a buyer
Administrator's desperate bid to
save troubled caravan business
hunt is on to find buyers for the troubled Aussie Adventure Caravans group
which is in voluntary administration. BDO Australia is urgently
looking for expressions of interest from potential buyers of the business,
which includes its manufacturing facility in Victoria and national dealer
network. "This represents the best opportunity for the business and for
staff to potentially continue their employment under a new owner," BDO
said. Aussie Adventure Caravans has operations in Queensland,
NSW, Victoria and WA. Brands include Kokoda, Dreamseeker and Grand Salute.
The business is now operating under the BDO's control. Expressions of
interest close on February 22, the day scheduled for
the first meeting of creditors.
Have your say
Records continue to
YOUNG SET PACE AS CARAVAN INDUSTRY ENJOYS
caravanners are setting the pace as new figures
from Australia's peak caravanning and camping body reveal a booming
Records continue to tumble as more and more people take to caravan parks
and camping grounds for their holidays, according to the Caravan Industry
Association of Australia.
And leading the trend were the 20 to 29-year-olds who recorded a 16
percent increase over the previous year.
The 30 to 54 age group rose five percent to 300,000 visitors, while total
nights spent caravanning and camping rose by nine percent to reach a
record 54.8 million for the year ending September 2018.
This represented 15 percent of all nights spent in accommodation around
The association said growth was experienced across all states and
territories, with Queensland seeing the most significant increase of 23
percent in nights and 12.4 percent in visitors.
It attributed this to Cyclone Debbie which savaged the state's caravan and
camping economy, adding that fortunately this had now "positively
Growth in the domestic caravan and camping industry continued to outpace
the national visitor economy, where total overnight trips grew by
seven percent to reach 102.7 million and nights grew by six
percent to 368 million.
Research found that over 6.5 million domestic
caravanners and campers
ate out at a restaurant or cafe, making it the most preferred activity.
an exciting time: Apollo
of Windsor, Coromal
caravans roll off production line
THE first of a new breed
of Windsor and Coromal caravans has rolled off the
production line. A range of caravans built
by Brisbane-based Apollo Tourism and
Leisure will be on show at the Gold Coast Caravan and
Camping Show opening on March 1 at the Metricon Stadium. Apollo, which has
an RV manufacturing factory at Nudgee, acquired the brand names last year from Fleetwood Corporation's
loss-making RV division for a bargain $1 million. This followed pressure
from the WA company's shareholders to abandon caravan manufacturing. Under
the terms of the deal Apollo was this year also
able to buy Fleetwood's remaining raw materials and finished goods stock.
Commenting on the new breed of Windsor and Coromal
caravans, Apollo marketing and industry liaison officer Jessica Adams told
Caravanning News it was "an exciting" time.
Meanwhile, Coromal and Windsor warranty agents have complained of being
kept in the dark. Ge Wilson, of Wilsons Caravan Repairs at Midland, WA,
told Caravanning News: "We have been told nothing or had anything
in writing about the sale. Not a word from the beginning."
Have your say
Bumper line-up of events for Silo fest
CARAVANNERS and other travellers will head to Coonalpyn in SA next month
for the town's second four-day RV festival. They
will be enjoy a bumper program of arts, culture,
history and nature-based recreation. Opening on March 1, the Silo Sights -
RV Basecamp Coonalpyn Festival is expected to attract new visitors from
all over Australia. It will be hosted by the Coorong District Council and
Coonalpyn community and will build on the success of the inaugural 2017
event, which coincided with renowned artist Guido van Helten putting his
final touches on the now-famous 30-metre high silo mural.
caravanner scoops $107m
A SYDNEY mother who scooped a
record-breaking $107 million with a Powerball
entry may join the line of lucky caravanners who
have also won their fortunes on the lotto. After being told of her
phenomenal windfall, the healthcare professional admitted she had thoughts
of buying a caravan for a round-Australia road trip. "The win gives me the
chance to go and do the things I've always want to do," the 40-year-old
battler, who requested anonymity, said. Previous lotto winners have
included a couple of grey nomads from the Gold Coast who collected a cool
$10 million. And a few months later they landed another $150,000 with a
$10 Instant Scratch-Its ticket bought at Top News in Katherine in the
Northern Territory. Another grey nomad from NSW was "ecstatic" with her
$985,744.11 lotto win. The latest winner said she won the jackpot by
"picking random numbers". They were 20, 18, 33, 44, 11, 26 and 4 and the
Powerball was number 9.
Have your say
of silence upsets park proprietor
THE sound of silence is aggravating the proprietor of an award-winning
Queensland caravan park. Emma Noble said she has
a 30-year lease to develop the council-owned Gympie Caravan Park, holder
of an Australian Business Gold award for excellence in customer service.
But in a letter to the Gympie Times, she posed the question: "I'm
just publicly inquiring why the new head of tourism has not contacted me
at all." Ms Noble said the appointment was made last October. "What's the
hold up?" she asked, adding that it "seemed odd" the council-owned tourist
establishment had been overlooked. "Doesn't that seem strange?" she added.
There was no one available at the council for comment.
Have your say
ponders permits plan reaction
PUBLIC reaction to proposed new rules for
free camping at Ararat's Green Hill Lake Reserve in Victoria is being
considered by the local council. The reserve on
the Western Highway is popular with caravanners and other travellers and
has no designated camping spots. But the council now wants to introduce a
permit system which would apply at other sites too. Camping will remain
free but a donation box is located at the site, with proceeds going
towards the upkeep and improvements to the lake and its facilities.
The council's call for submissions from the public
closed on February 1. A report to councillors at their last meeting
said the cost-free permit system would "provide camping equity to all,
maintain the social and recreational amenity of the location and guide
social and recreationally responsible behaviour of campers". The 28-day
permits would be required by campers intending to stay for more than 72
hours. They would be able to apply for another permit after the 28 days
expired. Green Hill Lake Development Board treasurer and assistant
secretary Morris Allgood told media he thought the system was unlikely to
discourage campers but could attract new travellers into the
Have your say
caravan park set for change
A CARAVAN park in the small north-central Victorian country town of
Rochester is set for a change in name and management.
Campaspe Shire Council has announced it will hand Rochester Caravan Park
back to the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning. Mayor
Adrian Weston (pictured) said it was on Crown land and currently managed
by the council and leased to a private operator. Cr Weston said the
committee would focus on increasing the tourism market and rename the park
Rochester Riverside Holiday Park.
dedication' earns Ron an OAM
stalwart recognised in Australia Day honours
CARAVANNING Queensland chief executive Ron Chapman was recognised in the
Australia Day honours for his tireless efforts and dedication to the
caravan industry. Mr Chapman received a Medal of the Order of
Australia for his service to the Sunshine State's tourism industry.
Caravan Industry Association of Australia chief executive Stuart Lamont
said the OAM was well deserved. "Ron has been involved in the industry
since 1966 and in that time has demonstrated incredible dedication to the
industry and its people," he said. "There are very few people who have
done as much for the Australian caravanning and camping industry as Ron."
Mr Chapman has held many leading roles over the years.
camper's tee-shirt raises a smile
EXPERIENCED camper Bruce Ninnis had a lot of explaining to do after
sparking a full-scale air and land search.
Frantic wife Melinda reported him missing after he failed to make contact
while on a five-day solo camping trip to Woods Point on the Goulburn
River, 180km north-east of Melbourne. The Police Air Wing and local
officers launched an extensive search and finally spotted Mr Ninnisí car.
The surprised and embarrassed camper explained that he had sent daily text
messages to his wife, but it appears they were lost in the ether because
of poor reception. While Melinda was relieved to hear that her husband had
been located safe and well, she might have pondered and smiled at the
motif on Bruce's tee-shirt he was wearing when found. It proclaimed: "I
can only please one person a day, and today is not your day. Tomorrow's
not looking too good either." Police have urged campers to always carry a
satellite phone in remote areas where there might be no reception.
Have your say
considers free-camp permit system
TOWNSVILLE City Council in Queensland is considering setting up an online
booking system for overnight stays at its six free camping areas.
It believes it would make life simpler for tourists at the sites on the
northern beaches. Councillor Margie Ryder said the council was
investigating setting up the new arrangement to "streamline the process"
and encourage more visitors to the area. "Improved access to campsites
will bring more money into the city," she claimed.
of the times for Whitsunday town
A NEW move to entice more caravanners into the Queensland town of Bowen is
a sign of the times. Whitsunday Regional Council
intends to place signage on the Bruce Highway promoting areas where grey
nomads and others travelling in RVs can park throughout the day. Mayor
Andrew Willcox wants to dispel the myth held by some travellers that the
town ‒ claimed to be a jewel in the Whitsunday
crown ‒ is unfriendly. "I think once we get the
people in here they'll fall in love with the place then hopefully stay in
one of our paid caravan parks for an extended period of time," he told
media. More and more communities in the Sunshine State are providing free
camps to snare a slice of the lucrative market. But Bowen is not following
suit, believing it is unfair to caravan parks. "I think you can be an
RV-friendly town without it having to be free," Cr Willcox said. It is
hoped the new signage will be in place before the annual pilgrimage of
southerners escaping the chilly states for the warmer climes of
Have your say
income set to soar, says council
NEW foreshore cabins at Wallaroo Holiday Park in South Australia are
expected to drastically boost the park's income, according to the Copper
Coast Council. Annual income at the park,
formerly known as Wallaroo North Beach Tourist Park, will rise about
$350,000 to $450,000 annually, it predicted in its newsletter. The park,
which offers a range of powered and unpowered sites for caravans and
tents, also has a new amenities block and kiosk.
Have your say
loves life on the road
AN author who makes a living from writing novels inspired by places she
visits while travelling around in her caravan has been thrilling readers
in the Sunshine State. Jenn McLeod called in at
Gladstone City Library as part of a regional tour. The successful writer,
who penned one of her books in Central Queensland, did a reading from her
latest novel A place to Remember, which is based on a
fifth-generation farming family and set in Rockhampton. She spoke about
her writing career and the joys and pitfalls of publishing, and answered
questions from the audience. Acting Gladstone mayor Chris Trevor said the
council strived to host a diverse range of authors within the region's
libraries. Jenn said she loved writing books with a backdrop of country
life while living on the road in her fifth-wheeler caravan called
Myrtle The Turtle.
Have your say
of tiny towns set for new caravan parks
A TRIO of tiny towns in Queensland's outback will soon boast of having its
own caravan parks. Barcaldine Regional Council
plans to open the $8-a-night basic parks in Muttaburra, Aramac and
Jericho. It has received nearly a million dollars from the state
government's Outback Tourism Infrastructure Fund for the project. The
parks are expected to be operational before May when Barcaldine hosts a
world record attempt on the longest line of motorhomes. They will provide
up to 200 sites with free Wifi, drinking water and sewage disposal
facilities only. Council chief executive Steven Boxall hopes the new parks
will help entice some of the grey nomads and other RV travellers making
their way to places like Longreach, Winton and Birdsville.
Have your say
Errant traveller dubbed
'idiot of the year'
Bending the rules creates
near miss for caravanner
CARAVANNER'S misfortune while crossing the infamous "Bendy
Bridge" into the NSW city of Grafton has gone viral in
cyberspace. The traveller was forced
to brake heavily when
suddenly confronted by a B-double truck after crossing double while
lines to pass a stationary vehicle on a sharp bend.
The errant caravanner had to reverse
his rig to allow the giant truck to
proceed across the bridge over the Clarence River.
Dashcam footage on
Facebook showed the near miss and
attracted more than 75,000 viewers
and was shared more than 2000
times. It was posted by Grafton local Sam Joyce who commented:
"This clown wins idiot of the year. Dunno wtf
(sic) he was thinking." Other
comments also slammed the caravanner. The bridge has in the past come in
for some criticism from caravanners who have described it as a
"nightmare". One commented on You Tube: "Grey nomads do not look
forward to driving over it, specially with a caravan in tow." Another
said: "It has corners that are not made for caravans or trucks."
Have your say
crime at Mount Isa caravan parks
POLICE and caravan park
owners have met to discuss improving security at Queensland's outback city
of Mount Isa. Owners and managers from four local parks attended the
meeting, designed to help reduce crime and increase local awareness of
crime-prevention practices. The parks were Sunset Top Tourist Park, Mount
Isa Holiday and Caravan Park, Argylla Holiday and Caravan Park and the
AAOK Moondarra Caravan Park. Representatives
were advised to be aware of crime prevention through actions including
installing security cameras and motion-activated floodlights, cutting down
or trimming trees and hedges and identifying existing hotspots on their
properties that needed attention to prevent the likelihood of a crime
Nest park finally sells
CROWS Nest caravan
park near Toowoomba in Queensland has new owners
after a near two-year sales campaign. A member
of the Kui Parks chain, the tourist park offers
103 sites, pool, camp kitchens, cafe, and well known restaurant. The new
owners, Gerald Searle and Phillip Curnuck, have more than two decades of
experience in the accommodation industry, buying their first park more
than 20 years ago. They have also owned hotels and motels. Located on the
New England Highway, the park went on the market nearly two years ago with
a $2.5 million price-tag. It was previous sold
for $1.7 million in 2008.
Have your say
questions for RV sellers
THE Caravan Council of Australia has warned potential caravan buyers to do
their "homework" before signing on the dotted line.
"It is a real concern that so many caravan manufacturers have gone out of
business in recent times," founder and qualified engineer Colin Young
said. "A potential-buyer needs to be ultra-diligent when selecting a new
caravan so as to have a high level of confidence in the future prospects
of any particular company." He warned that caravan manufacturers were able
to self-certify their products. "Unfortunately, this does not provide
potential-buyers with anywhere near the same degree of assurance of
compliance or quality compared with motor vehicles, where all compliance
evidence is examined by Vehicle Safety Standards," he said. The council
has produced a list of hard-hitting questions that potential buyers should
get their sellers to sign. "If a supplier is unable - or unwilling - to
answer any question, a potential-buyer may well wish to ask why, and
seriously consider whether they feel comfortable doing business with
them," Mr Young said. For more information, log on to the Caravan Council
of Australia website.
Have your say
issues storm advice
A BRISBANE caravan repair company has urged caravan owners to be extra
vigilant during summer storms season. "They
should invest in high-quality caravan covers to protect the body of the
'van from flying debris and wind damage," a spokesperson for Brendale-based
certified repair agent CaravanXpress said. It also recommended the safe
storage of RVs at secure facilities and to avoid parking near trees or
unsecured items. The Bureau of Meteorology warns that Queensland's cyclone
season usually lasts until April, with strong winds, rainfall, and
potential flooding posing a risk to outdoor vehicles such as caravans and
Have your say
your best camping moments
VISITORS to Queensland's National Parks and forests are being encouraged
to share their experiences in a new campaign to attract more tourists.
The State Government has launched a four-month digital advertising
campaign during which campers can relive their best moments and be in the
running to win a $100 camping gift card. Environment Minister Leeanne
Enoch commented: "With 485 camping areas to choose from, our parks and
forests offer camping opportunities to suit everyone Ė from remote camp
sites with very few facilities to camping areas fully equipped with
toilets, showers and barbecue areas." She said that with 2019 being the
Year of Outback Tourism, it was the perfect time to explore parks and
forests in the Sunshine State's unique outback. "A new easy-to-use website
will take the heavy lifting out of planning a camping trip and will
include everything visitors need to know and take, and offer helpful tips
to have the best possible camping experience," she added. For more
information on the Lifeís Best Moments campaign,
Have your say
Age dealerships merge
NEW Age Caravans' two dealers in south-east Queensland are being merged.
The company said that while the decision to close its Sunshine Coast
dealership was taken "with some regret" it was necessary for New Age to be
represented in a "bigger and better way". It will mean operations on the
Sunshine Coast will be transferred to its Gold Coast dealership at Varsity
Lakes. The new arrangement would provide a level of customer service that
would be the benchmark across the country, dealer principal of New Age
Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast Paul Cameron said. "This is only achievable
by focusing our attention on developing the one dealership for New Age in
south-east Queensland. All existing customers of Sunshine Coast can rest
assured they will be cared for and communicated with throughout this
transition and that their orders and purchases will be treated with
absolute priority," he added.
Have your say
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of recompense for
a victim of
HERE is my comment on jail for drug-affected caravan
thief at Toowoomba (see story here).
And what recompense did the owner get for pain and suffering?
Even if one is insured there is a great deal of worry and loss with
this sort of thing.
I'll bet there was no thought given to the victim by the court
regarding their losses and angst.
so sad to read about two caravanners dying in the Oxley Hwy horror crash (see
Not a lot to say, but many so called armchair experts won't be able to help
themselves in offering a "spray" as to what they think happened.
Iíll wait for the Coroner's report.