Tenterfield (pop 4,066), is located a 3 hr drive from Brisbane, Queensland. Or a couple of hours choppy, bumpy and occasionally jolting ride north from Beardy Creek in the slow moving Ripley.
Man…some of our ‘A’ roads are in rubbish condition.

Tenterfield has played some pivotal roles in Australian history including its preparation as last stand if the Japanese were to invade during World War II ( in 1942 thousands of soldiers were secretly deployed to build tank traps and gun emplacements completely unbeknownst to the local population).

In 1889 Sir Henry Parkes delivered his federation speech at the Tenterfield School of Arts building that led to extensive debates, and eventually resulting in Federation in 1901.

Tenterfield saddler

Tenterfield is also famous for being the setting of Peter Allen’s 1972 hit ’Tenterfield Saddler’. The song speaks of Peters relationships with his grandfather, father and his marriage to Lisa Minnelli.

Initially we couldn’t find the Saddlers Workshop after running a lap of the main street. I figured it was long gone.

As we rolled out of town, Kelly Googled the location discovering it a short distance up a side street. We had walked right past it distracted by our blinkered search for caffeine.

“Turn around! Turn around!”, urged Kelly.

Hmmm.
As Ripley’s turning circle is around 23 kilometres, I wasn’t real keen to make a U-turn on the highway. But once Kelly threatened to withdraw all conjugal rights until further notice if I didn’t 180 degree pronto, I had but little alternative.

And you know, I am really glad we went back to find it. A small 3 roomed building cluttered with memorabilia and old equipment related to the history of the saddlery.

After a really interesting exploration around Tenterfield, we finally pointed Ripley north again and headed up the highway, across the Queensland border, to Warwick. This time we were planning to stay in a holiday park.

We left Canberra last week… and up until now have spent a total of just $33.00 on accomodation. But now there was a growing pile laundry making an olfactory exclamation mark that we attend to it.

Plus I need a hot shower and a shave, ‘cause tomorrow is my birthday and I gotta be on point. Know what I mean?

Posted by Ian Miller

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