Home' Army News : March 29th 2012 Contents Army March 29, 2012
Discount for veterans
Dotted around Australia are campsites and retreats offering free or discounted accommodation for veterans
Cpl Mark Doran
ADF veterans are welcome to stay at more
than 20 retreats around Australia to get
away from it all and spend time relaxing.
Those on offer range from wilderness-
style retreats such as Pandanus Park on Cape
York Peninsula to the home-style accommo-
dation of the Tasmanian Veterans Retreat in
Fees for the retreats are varied, with
only a donation requested at Camp Andrew
Russell in South Australia or $7 for a cabin
at the Cockscomb Veterans Retreat near
Rockhampton in Queensland.
Most of these retreats cater for serving
members and their families, although some
have more precise rules and benefits for for-
mer members only.
Vietnam Veterans Association of Australia
National President Ron Coxon said veterans'
retreats often formed a type of community
where the veterans fitted right in.
"As much as post traumatic stress can be
about the veterans, the retreats are also an
excellent way for wives and family members
to get together and talk about what is going on
with people going through the same experi-
ences," Mr Coxon said.
"If veterans are from a major unit which
has deployed they usually have the rest of the
members in their unit who can then give them
support if needed.
"It is the younger veterans who have
recently returned from Afghanistan and Iraq,
especially those who are in reserve units, who
can often lose touch with other returned ser-
vicemen when they go back to their normal
Facilities offered by the retreats range
from the basic camping areas on the Roper
River at the Roper Retreat in the Northern
Territory to a donga for veterans with dis-
abilities at the Meentheena Cattle Station near
Marble Bar in Western Australia.
For more information go to www.vvaa.org.au/news.
htm or veteranretreat.tripod.com/retreats.htm
Pandanus Park is the veterans' wilder-
ness retreat on Cape York Peninsula
just south of Princess Charlotte Bay.
Wet-season permitting, Pandanus
Park is open annually from Anzac Day
to Remembrance Day. There is only
one definite event every year: the gath-
ering on August 18, when there is an
influx of veterans and their families.
GPS: E144 17.984 S14 56.503
Standown Park offers a discount for
veterans. 91 Radke Road, Kia Ora
(halfway between Gympie and Tin Can
Bay). Contact owners Rod (ex 9RAR)
and Pam Elkington on (07) 5486 5144
or 0417 718 127.
Cockscomb Veterans Camp is about
23km from Rockhampton and includes
a camp kitchen, showers and toilets
but no power, $5 donation. Contact
Allan Evans (07) 4934 4941.
Sapphire Gemfields is located behind
the post office at the RSL in Sapphire
and includes power, toilets, showers,
water and barbecue. $5 per night.
Contact Peter Johnson (ex 6RAR) on
0439 797 175.
Alaric Homestead Veterans Retreat
is located at Quilpie. The Homestead
is fully furnished and managed by a
veteran duty officer. Very low nominal
fee charged per day. Caravans and
camper trailers can also be parked at
a low daily fee. Contact the duty officer
on (07) 4656 4740.
Rocky Creek War Memorial Park is a
camp spot is located at Tolga. There is
a 72-hour limit and camping requires
a gold coin donation. There are toilets,
barbecue and non-potable water. It
is a memorial site to all soldiers who
trained on the tablelands before being
sent overseas. There is a caretaker
Zac's Place at 715 Ross River Road,
Kirwan, near Townsville, is run by
VVAA Qld Branch. There is accommo-
dation for up to 11 people with all facili-
ties. Tariff is $25.00 for accommoda-
tion, breakfast and light lunch. Contact
manager Margaret Standfast on (07)
4773 6980 or (07) 4723 7022
Homestead Caravan Park is located
along the Landsborough Highway at
Barcaldine, Queensland. Every day in
the late afternoon during winter, hosts
Ben and Thanh prepare the campfire
with damper and billy tea prepared the
old bush way. The park offers enter-
tainment nightly and always has some-
thing special on for Vietnam Veterans
Day on August 18. Cabins are avail-
able. For reservations contact Ben or
Thanh on (07) 4651 1308.
New South Wales
Raymond Deed Retreat at Dareton
has power, water and allows pets for
$10 per night. Phone the caretakers
Col and Robyn Dunkley on (03) 5027
Murraguldrie Veterans Retreat is sit-
uated on the edge of the Murraguldrie
State Forest about a 40-minute drive
from Wagga Wagga. It is only a new
enterprise and the owners are still
working on the venue. Contact Barbara
Davie on (02) 6922 3855.
McPhersons Plains Alpine Retreat
is located at Nurenmerenmong via
Tumbarumba in the Kosciusko National
Bubblagowrie Vietnam Veterans
Village is located between Stansbury
and Giles Point Yorktown. The village
includes three veteran museums --
$5 admission. Cabins are available
for $40 a night, vans for $8 a night.
Contact owner Chris Soar (ex vet of
Malaya) on (08) 8853 4379 or
0419 853 294.
Camp Andrew Russell is 35km south
east of Loxton along the Murray Bridge
Road. Turn left (or right if coming from
Adelaide) onto the Lameroo Road, tak-
ing the right fork along the road. The
entrance is marked with a cream trac-
tor tyre, just past a road sign. Visitors
will need a key for access and must
contact John Hough on 0409 098 093.
Tasmania Veterans Retreat
(Interlaken retreat) offers house
accommodation in the remote cen-
tral highlands area, 20 minutes from
Bothwell. Prices are $30 per double,
$5 per extra person. For bookings
contact Robin O'Connor on (03) 6224
Camp Hart is a combination of private
and crown land vested with the Shire
of Kulin. It is situated three-and-a-half
hours south east of Perth, 14km east
of Kulin. Donations are welcome. Open
to all ADF Veterans. Contact Roger
Lingard on (08) 9527 8000 or
0419 944 627.
Bruce Rock is situated 254km from
Perth in the wheat belt. Veterans are
always welcome but each year in
November they conduct a Vietnam vet-
erans' activity. Most stay at the Bruce
Rock Caravan Park which can be con-
tacted on (08) 9061 1070.
Paddy's Flat, Meekatharra is a resort-
style facility with unit accommodation
including a community kitchen, laun-
dry, large swimming pool and barbe-
cue area. For booking information call
Chris Atkins, caretaker and veteran, on
(08) 9980 1220.
Roper Retreat is located 31km along
the Northern territory Highway. Turn
north at the Elsey Station sign. Contact
Tony on 0401 100 514 or Jimbob on
0419 414 209.
Coral House is at 107 Bagot Rd,
Ludmilla. It's run by VVAA Northern
Territory and includes shared kitchen
facilities, laundry and bathroom, linen,
TV in common room and three shared
bedrooms providing seven beds.
Contact manager Jack Hamilton on
Darwin Retreat is about one-and-a-
half hours' drive from Darwin at a place
called Pioneer Beach on the western
side of Cox Peninsula. The actual site
used by the veterans is back from the
beach, about 5Km in from the turn off
that continues to Mandorah.
Cockatoo Rise Retreat is run by
Anne and Greg Carter, who welcome
veterans, their partners and war
widows. The new Retreat is situated
6km from Bairnsdale in the Gippsland
Project Pandanus is an ever-evolving group working to help establish government-supplied wilderness retreats for
veterans and their families in every state and territory of Australia.
Retreats available throughout Australia
Time for reflection: Veterans retreats throughout Australia offer discounted and, in some cases, free accommodation for veterans and their
families looking for a place to relax.
Photo by Cpl Melina Mancuso
Links Archive March 15th 2012 April 12th 2012 Navigation Previous Page Next Page