ON Wednesday Peter and Katherine Tullia, of the Colonial Motor Lodge Scone will hold a meeting for local businesses and residents who are concerned about the impact a proposed new development on the Scone bypass.
See story: New Petrol Station and Proposed Motel.
Peter and Katherine have leased the motel for 11 years and said not only will a new motel impact all of the existing motels, but the petrol station and restaurant on the bypass will mean less people will come into the township.
“If there is a petrol station and restaurant at the bypass turn off people will just stop there to get a coffee and something to eat and not come into the town, so all local business will lose out,” said Mr Tullia.
Barnaby Joyce, federal member for New England was recently in Scone and announced there would be 26,000 more visitors to the area and tourism organisations are claiming Scone needs more accommodation, which confounds the Tullias.
“I don’t know where this figure of 26,000 came from,” said Peter Tullia.
“There are only two weekends a year when accommodation is full, the Scone Cup and maybe now the airshow but it has only just started running,” he said.
“And you can’t build a motel based on two weekends a year,” he said.
“In terms of the museum, we want it to go well, but we’ve worked in another town with a train museum and there are bus loads of older people who come in, but they also get back on the bus at the end of the day and leave town,” he said.
“And it is great that they are doing up White Park, but when horse people come to town they stay in their trailers and camp, they don’t use the motels, I’ve even taken my coffee cart down there for the day and only sold $250 worth of coffee, that’s not even enough to cover a staff member, so where these 26,000 are coming from who need accommodation?” he questioned.
Typically occupancy of the current motels in Scone are at 60 percent or less explained Katherine Tullia.
“The numbers for occupancy and tourism are publicly available on the Australian Bureau of Statistics and I can’t see how they can say there is not enough accommodation in Scone or that 26,000 more people are coming, the figures just don’t add up,” Katherine Tullia said.
“In our business we really want to see tourism grow and go well, but we just can’t see where all these people are going to come from all year round and not just two weekends a year,” she said.
The meeting will be held at 6pm, Wednesday, March 21 at the Colonial Motor Lodge Scone, 9 Guernsey Street, Scone. All local businesses and concerned residents are welcome to attend.