Paul Prout
Paul Prout

Twin Towns split down middle by border blockade

A club and resort straddling the Queensland-NSW border has been left in a strange situation as checkpoints tear apart the tight-knit Coolangatta-Tweed communities.

Twin Towns Services Club is on Wharf St at Tweed Heads, while Mantra Twin Towns Resort is on Griffith St at Coolangatta. They are connected by an overhead walkway.

Twins Towns Services Club Group Marketing Manager Paul Prout over looks the NSW / QLD border from Twin Towns Resort on Griffith Street Coolangatta. Picture Scott Powick
Twins Towns Services Club Group Marketing Manager Paul Prout over looks the NSW / QLD border from Twin Towns Resort on Griffith Street Coolangatta. Picture Scott Powick

Many Twin Towns workers, including marketing manager Paul Prout, live on the Gold Coast.
"The interesting thing is we are a NSW-based club but we've got our front yard virtually in Queensland and our backyard in NSW," he said.

"And we've got a checkpoint right out the front of our resort (Mantra Twin Towns). Literally, the border runs right through the middle of that property."

Mr Prout detailed his own unusual trip into the office amid coronavirus border restrictions

"My example, I drive from Broadbeach where I reside. I drive across the border for about 60 metres and park my car in NSW, but I'm only 60m over the border.

"I park my car and walk into the property and I'm in NSW, but if I walk a little bit north in the car park I cross over the border again. We're right on the border."

Workers have faced a confusing situation getting to work, but were getting used to running the border blockade. Deliveries of food, alcohol and the like have also been delayed at times, not only due to checkpoints but the COVID-19 situation more generally, Mr Prout said.

 

Twin Towns split down middle by border blockade. Picture Scott Powick
Twin Towns split down middle by border blockade. Picture Scott Powick

"Traffic congestion did affect some of our staff, but they're getting really used to this, leaving a little earlier to get to work."

Issues around checkpoints have eased and are a far cry from July 10, when Queensland opened its borders to all states, excluding Victoria and other hotspot areas.

Mr Prout said trade at the club and resort, which employed almost 300 people, was down after reopening June 1 in "awkward" circumstances.

But he said Twin Towns was fortunate considering the situation in Victoria where coronavirus outbreaks have forced renewed lockdowns.

 

A club and resort straddling the Queensland-NSW border has been left in a strange situation as checkpoints tear apart the tight-knit Coolangatta-Tweed communities. Picture Scott Powick
A club and resort straddling the Queensland-NSW border has been left in a strange situation as checkpoints tear apart the tight-knit Coolangatta-Tweed communities. Picture Scott Powick

"We're back on the field playing, albeit under the restrictions. We can't trade as hard as we like. Trading is down with our capacity limited.

"We are reaching (coronavirus) capacity, but we're very careful about monitoring that.

"We're back in business and glad we're open."

Originally published as Twin Towns split down middle by border blockade


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