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Backpackers loving Biloela

Liz Clark loved playing with puppies on her backpacking adventure in Theodore.
Liz Clark loved playing with puppies on her backpacking adventure in Theodore. Contributed

BACKPACKERS aren't a rare sight in the Banana Shire as they are often used for labour on properties.

The Central Telegraph spoke with two backpackers who have been in the region for a few weeks.

James Woodhall and Liz Clark are both from England however, they met as backpackers in a hostel in Melbourne.

The pair hit it off and have been travelling together since November.

After spending three months in Sydney, the pair headed north before making their way to Theodore in May.

The couple spent a few weeks working on a cattle station towards Cracow.

"We walked around fields poisoning trees,” Liz said.

"It was hot and carrying some of the equipment was heavy,” Jim said.

Jim and Liz enjoyed their time around Theodore and said how nice the community was.

"Everyone was friendly, every time we went into town they said hello and we went into the cafe a couple of times,” Liz said.

They also said they loved learning how to do things on the property.

"It has been good doing something different,” Jim said.

"Learning how to use a chainsaw, driving a tractor, quad bikes and there is always animals on the farms,” Liz said.

"I really enjoyed tractor driving, it was my favourite.”

CHANGE OF PACE: Jim Woodhall loved driving utes when working at Theodore.
CHANGE OF PACE: Jim Woodhall loved driving utes when working at Theodore. Contributed

Jim and Liz have been in Biloela for about a month now working on another cattle station doing odd jobs.

The pair have been living in a caravan and were surprised at the cold.

"We didn't realise how cold it gets here,” Liz said.

"We thought who wears jeans and jumpers in Australia.”

"You would think with how cold it gets in England we would be used to because the winters days here are our summer but we seem to have lost our cold ability,” Jim said.

During their time in Biloela, the pair have done some travelling and quite enjoy the area.

"The scenery around here is quite pretty,” Liz said;

"And how clear it is at night, you can see the Milky Way; I have never seen it so clear before,” Jim said.

The job the backpackers are working is almost finished and they are looking for more work.

"It would be nice to stay around here because it quite pretty and Rockhampton and Gladstone aren't far away so it is close to everything we want to go and do and see,” Liz said.

"It's nice to get that experience of a local town rather than in a hostel in a city centre.”

The pair are on a working holiday visa and so far have only managed to get signed off on 44 days out of 88 day in three months.

"It has been difficult because we don't have any experience and we're asking the farmers to take us on, to pay us and sign us off,” Liz said. "And the changes to the visas are a bit complicated so it is lot of effort for the farmers.

"Plus they go to all that effort for people who don't even know what they are doing.

"So it has been really difficult trying to find jobs, a lot harder than we thought it would be.”

The pair will have to move on soon if they can't find work but they have been trying.

"We have been calling farmers off yellow pages and it's been hard work,” Jim said.

"It is a bit disheartening calling farm after farm for them and they all say they don't need anyone.”

While they do hope to find some work in the area soon, the pair have enjoyed their time travelling the region and Australia.

"I have enjoyed Australia completely since the day I got here,” Jim said.

Topics:  backpackers backpacker work biloela business visa changes


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