Meet the grandparents who’ve got keys to their own city
MEET Queensland’s newest st property moguls – the Harley y Davidson-riding grandpar- ents who bought a town. On the cusp of retirement, , Karyn Peeters, 58, and hus- band Peter, 60, paid $550,000 to beat hundreds of others to land the keys to Allies Creek, northwest of Kingaroy. The couple told The Courier-Mail they expected to spend around $2 million over two years to create a retro tourism mecca that their friends and family could be proud of, but which could be shared to “save the bush”. Complete with a church, lake, sawmill, two streets of houses and four sheds, the resurrected town was expected to offer the charms of “yesteryear all around the property”. “I’d say to get the complete park up and running – two years,” said Mr Peeters, a builder who also has a stake in a roofing and steel business. “We’re going to have a bar and recreation area which will couple up with the church so we can have weddings and also for the weekend people who want to come and visit.” They hope the first wedding will be their daughter’s, who got engaged yesterday. Mr Peeters, who is building units in Brisbane, has already sent tradies to the town to kickstart the project. Karyn, who grew up in Julia Creek, said it was “the peacefulness” of Allies Creek that struck her first.
“I just love the calmness of the place and it just felt like we were going back in our youth and coming home,” she said.
Apart from adding new facilities for laundromats, caravans and a commercial kitchen, the couple plan to hold workshops for mosaicmaking, leadlight windows, carpentry and timberwork.
Mrs Peeters will resurrect the leadlight windows in the church herself, and also oversee the authenticity of the retro-renovation — turning back the clock but adding 21st century conveniences.
“We hope down the track to attract the grey nomads and the motorcyclists and we’re going to try over time to create a little bit of something nostalgic. It’s only four and a half hours from Brisbane so it’s an easy day ride if you want to do nine hours, or we would prefer you stay overnight at least,” he said
The couple hope to attract craftspeople to be a part of recreating the vintage town.
BIG PLANS: Peter and Karyn Peeters plan to resurrect Allies Creek. Picture: Adam Head