Royal representative sees just how special Biloela is

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By Jen Gourley

BILOELA had the honour and the pleasure of a visit from a genuine VIP over the past two days.

Her Excellency the Honourable Dr Jeannette Young AC PSM, accompanied by her husband Professor Graeme Nimmo RFD, arrived in Biloela yesterday as part of a three-day tour visiting the Banana Shire and the Central Highlands.

Dr Young is the 27th Governor of Queensland and representative of His Majesty King Charles III, Queensland’s Head of State.

It’s not uncommon to see fire trucks parked in front of the Biloela Fire Station but the sight of a shiny, very official-looking, black BMW with a flag and insignia on the front was a first.

Inside the station, Her Excellency was able to speak with members of the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services and get a guided tour of one of the fire engines, both inside and out.

The Governor showed her appreciation for the efforts of our Emergency Services personnel by presenting them each with a special coin.

Today, Her Excellency started her day with an inspection of Biloela Hospital, greeting hospital staff and being shown around the facilities by Director of Nursing Bernadette Vasiliadis. The corridors became cluttered with camera crews, photographers, and special guests, but our wonderful hospital staff weren’t fazed, and kept going on with their important jobs with smiles on their faces.

The next stop on the Governor’s itinerary was the Callide Valley Men’s Shed on Valentine Plains Road in Biloela. Her Excellency and Professor Nimmo were greeted by Men’s Shed President Graeme Barnes before being taken inside for morning tea.

The morning tea room was filled with “Shedders” and friends and the VIP guests enjoyed the casual, friendly atmosphere, having a bite of morning tea and looking at the history of the Men’s Shed.

The Vice-Regal couple are both Patrons of the Men’s Shed and after seeing the facilities, Professor Nimmo declared the Callide Valley Men’s Shed was the best he had seen!

After posing for a photo outside the shed, it was time for the very special guests to head to Moura for the next leg of their itinerary.

I had been following Her Excellency around, taking photos of this very gracious lady, since yesterday afternoon, and just before she climbed into her car, she thanked me for covering her visit. She leaned in and said with a smile, “You’ve got some really wonderful people here in Biloela… But I think you already know that.”

Yes, Your Excellency, we do have some really wonderful people in Biloela, who do so many amazing things for our community. I’m glad you got to meet them, and I’m glad we got to meet you.

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