Club will feel ef­fect of empty camp site

Central Telegraph - - NEWS - Vanessa Jar­rett Vanessa.Jar­rett@cen­tral­tele­graph.com.au

AS THE grey no­mads, campers and trav­ellers move on to other nearby free camps, they take the money they spend in lo­cal shops in Biloela with them.

Biloela An­zac Memo­rial Club man­ager Greg Sea­grott said they would feel the ef­fects as they were go­ing to lose busi­ness.

“It def­i­nitely has af­fected our busi­ness al­ready, we used to get a lot of them com­ing through on a Sun­day, par­tic­u­larly for lunch,” Greg said.

Greg said he felt a num­ber of them would move on, de­spite the re­cently opened Lake Cal­lide Re­treat with pow­ered and un­pow­ered sites nearby.

“If they can’t camp up for free, some will move on and go to the next one,” he said.

“It is dis­ap­point­ing but at the end of the day they have fa­cil­i­ties out there that are cheap.”

Some campers have stated they will move on to the next free camp as they don’t want to pay for sites.

“It all costs money to run a park and if they are charg­ing rea­son­able prices, they should be able to stay even if it is for a night or two,” Greg said.

“I don’t know what else you can do but at the end of the day ev­ery­one has to pay their way as well.

“But it’s hard, we don’t want to see them go.”

Greg hopes the club will still be able to cap­i­talise on some of the grey no­mads and trav­ellers who pass through Biloela.

“We have had them pull up and grab smoko on the way through,” he said.

A lo­cal him­self, Greg said it was frus­trat­ing to see the small mi­nor­ity that ru­ined the camp­ing for ev­ery­one else.

“I have seen clowns come in with their utes and bikes and that is what wrecks it,” he said.

“The hooli­gans that have noth­ing bet­ter to do.”

Greg said the hooli­gans not only wrecked the land but their be­hav­iour also cre­ated safety con­cerns.

“I have spent one night out there camp­ing with a group of young chil­dren in the last five years and I saw three lots of them,” he said.

“We were wor­ried they were go­ing to come over to our camp.”

A ma­jor at­trac­tion, it has been dev­as­tat­ing to see the camp­ing closed on Cal­lide Dam for a num­ber of locals that en­joy camp­ing out there and look af­ter the place – it wasn’t just for the out-of-town campers.

“The dam is there to be en­joyed by ev­ery­one and when you get those fools that wreck it for ev­ery­one else,” Greg said.

“It af­fects ev­ery­one and the com­mu­nity.”

PHOTO: VANESSA JAR­RETT

LOST BUSI­NESS: Greg Sea­grott says the Biloela An­zac Memo­rial Club will feel the ef­fects of the campers mov­ing on from Cal­lide Dam.

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