‘Not happy at all’: Tweed’s border blow-up

 

FURIOUS Tweed residents are claiming Queensland border rejects are hiding out in the shire as they isolate ahead of another crack at entering the state.

However, a holiday park operator has hit back, claiming the grey nomads left Victoria weeks ago and were merely holidaying on the Tweed as they normally do at this time of the year.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk last week banned travellers from Victoria from entering Queensland unless they fell under strict exemptions.

More than 1000 people travelling from Victoria have been busted trying to make it through Queensland's border checkpoints since last Friday.

The illegal attempts have not gone unnoticed by Tweed locals who have taken to Facebook to express concern at where the people are staying after being turned away.

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Kama Dooley wrote on the Banora Point/Terranora Community News Facebook page: "When the cars are being turned around at the Queensland border (Victorian number-plated cars included) are then setting themselves up in the Tweed Shire to wait out their 14-day quarantine.

"My question/concern is if there are concerns about where they are from, then why are they all allowed to stay in the Tweed?"

Tony Winter wrote: "So many Vic licence plates around the Tweed, apparently Kingscliff and Fingal caravan parks are full of Victorians … not happy at all."

But Tweed Coast Holiday Parks co-ordinator Andrew Illingworth, who oversees seven accommodation sites between Pottsville and Tweed Heads, welcomed his usual influx of interstate visitors.

 

Tweed Holiday Parks unit co-ordinator Andrew Illingworth has defending the number of Victorian grey nomads on the Tweed. Picture: SCOTT POWICK
Tweed Holiday Parks unit co-ordinator Andrew Illingworth has defending the number of Victorian grey nomads on the Tweed. Picture: SCOTT POWICK

 

He said all visitors to his parks had to complete a declaration stating they hadn't been in a COVID-19 hot spot in the past 14 days.

"Most of the travellers we get up here are from regional Victoria and are not from designated hot spots," Mr Illingworth said.

"As an operator, visitors from Victoria are welcome to stay, as long as they're not coming from a hot spot, but you can't stay in one of our caravan parks to bide your time until you can cross the border."

Sharon Van den Broek questioned the actions of the travelling grey nomads.

"I've heard our showground is filled with travelling grey nomads from Victoria," she wrote on the Tyalgum community Facebook page.

"Can anyone confirm if they are obeying orders by their State Government to self-isolate if they crossed into NSW within the last two weeks. Are you OK with this?"

 

Traffic at the border crossing from NSW on the last day of school holidays. Picture: JASON O'BRIEN
Traffic at the border crossing from NSW on the last day of school holidays. Picture: JASON O'BRIEN

 

A Tyalgum Showgrounds spokesman dispelled the rumour circulating on Facebook and confirmed the ground was housing just two campers.

"We haven't got anyone 'hiding out here'," the spokesman said.

"We did have a load of travellers from Victoria. They filled us right up, but by the 11th (July), they were all gone.

"There's nothing going on down here, but what I did come across is a whole lot of prejudice against Victorians. It's not their fault, they're just caught between a rock and a hard place."

 

 

A NSW Police Service spokeswoman it was "business as usual" for Tweed police who had been performing high-visibility patrols of popular tourists along the Tweed Coast since March.

A Queensland Police Service spokesman said if a person was not permitted to enter Queensland and chose to stay in NSW they had to comply with any health orders relevant to the state.

"Queensland and NSW police have daily contact in relation to cross border issues. This includes COVID-19 matters impacting each state as required," he said.

Originally published as 'Not happy at all': Tweed's bizarre border blow-up


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