Residents of Einasleigh Say Security of Mobile Service is Phenomenal | Queensland Country Life


Residents of Einasleigh will finally be connected to the rest of the nation, with the construction of the city’s first mobile service tower.

Although residents are happy to move into the 21st century, publicans John Green and his partner Bianca Brooker decided they wanted to continue the tradition of the Einasleigh hotel without a phone at the bar.

“We wanted to keep the tradition of people coming to the pub, talking with other people and making new friends,” Green said.

“It’s fantastic to see, when when you go to town nobody wants to talk to you, everyone is on the phone.

“So we decided to keep the tradition alive where people actually talk to people.

“If you’re caught in the bar on your phone, you’re yelling everyone a beer!”

The couple have been publicans for two and a half months and say mobile service in the area has been a long time coming.

“The Telstra boys stayed at the pub here for a few days, obviously working on the tower and we first knew it was when one of the locals called us on their cell phone,” Green said.

After being in a dark spot for so long, residents have praised the safety aspect of a mobile service.

“The security aspect is phenomenal and I guess it’s good to be able to reach out to the rest of the nation,” Green said.

“This certainly has its advantages, many travelers need their phones and for the locals it is also a safety concern.”

Einasleigh hotel owners John Green and his partner Bianca Brooker have welcomed the news, but say they want to maintain the atmosphere of the 111-year-old pub, with a new rule banning phone calls to the bar.

The couple were supposed to take over the pub in April, but due to the pandemic all the pubs had to close, which Mr Green said was an April Fool’s joke.

“So our pub had to close for two months and could only open for an hour a day for locals to get take out food, so it was a very scary time,” he said.

“Since then it’s crazy how many Queenslanders are traveling in their backyard, it’s fantastic and awesome for the community.

“There are mixed feelings about it, some old guys don’t like the change at all, but overall it’s definitely a plus.”

Etheridge Shire Council Mayor Barry Hughes said a brand new telecommunications network running off 4G power had just been put into operation and his council praised the security and social aspects of the ‘installation.

“This is a great day, not only for the residents of Einasleigh but for the passing public who will have access to the telecommunications installed there,” said Cr Hughes.

“In terms of the benefits that will come from the new 4G tower installation, I guess the main benefit will be around the issue of security and access to updates and forecasts.

“Another equally important benefit is the social aspect and keeping in touch with the rest of the world.”

Holidaymakers flock to the iconic town every year for the annual Easter at Einasleigh, which the town has been unable to host this year due to health restrictions, but locals hope it continues next year.

“We really hope it is very difficult to plan for this due to the current restrictions, but all the committee members are working on it, we hope to make it work,” Green said.

Einasleigh Easter Race Committee member Chantel Ryan said it would benefit families who want to know how a loved one travels and ensure travelers get to their destinations safely.

“Letting others know how you travel, especially for young people just over eighteen who are going to Einasleigh with their friends for the weekend,” Ms. Ryan said.

“From a safety standpoint, there is peace of mind knowing that you can get in touch with someone if you get into trouble on these isolated roads, which is very important.

Robert Rutten is the business development manager for the Savannahlander train service and says the mobile service will allow travelers to document their trip to Einasleigh as they go, but will also be useful in an emergency.

Since regional travel resumed, Mr Rutten said the Savannahlander has seen a steady increase in patronage.

“Twice a week we stop at Einasleigh and our passengers get off there, have a beer and walk around the thriving metropolis of Einasleigh,” Mr Rutten said.

“Unfortunately as times have changed everyone wants to document their travels on social media as they go and they can’t do that in Einasleigh, due to the lack of reception.”

The Savannahlander's classic 1960s silver ball rail engine crosses the Einasleigh River to Einasleigh Township.  Photo: Savannahlander

The Savannahlander’s classic 1960s silver ball rail engine crosses the Einasleigh River to Einasleigh Township. Photo: Savannahlander

Mr Rutten said it was a surprise for the Savannahlander team to finally have access to mobile reception for the first time in Einasleigh.

“It was a bit of a shock to us, we suddenly got a call and it doesn’t really happen,” Mr. Rutten said.

“In the past, we had to go to locals to borrow their phones if someone needed to make a phone call in an emergency.

“It’s something the city has supported in terms of communication, but having mobile reception is really handy.”

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