Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

214 Excellent

About jac2011

  • Rank
    PIO Chatter Box

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

  1. jac2011

    Living in Townsville - Brownsville

    I moved here as you know nearly four months ago straight from the UK. To me Townsville is the ideal location for us since being here. It is everything we hoped for and more. The prices are so cheap we are living in Idalia (as you mentioned one of the nicer new suburbs) in a lovely complex where it is safe to leave your door open as there is 24 hour security. We are across the road from some amazing restaurants. My boys are in Oonoonba school which is a state school and is one of the best schools in the whole of Townsville if not northern qld. My daughter is in William Ross state school as of January and due to the education system in the UK she has been placed in an 'advanced' group of students and will be taught at a higher level than her peer group. We are surviving more than comfortably of one 'almost new' nurse grades. I am well respected in work by both the management and the medical team for my nursing skills from the UK. I can easily see promotion opportunities for anyone that lives permanently here, as there are so many people who transition through the city. Also, whilst there are lots of petty crimes, have you seen the crime? The newspaper and news programmes are full of stories that would never ever make the news in the UK. Someone stole a plant pot for example. I have not seen anywhere near the severe level of crime that I read about in the major cities. Townsville is known as brownsville, but for us we are happy with that. It's still very green in the suburbs where most places are watered and green. The cbd for example is just as lush as Brisbane was, Idalia is very green! I don't mind the brown too much on the outskirts as in the 4 months I have been here, last night was the only time it rained for more than 20 minutes. It certainly means we can go out each and every day. In fact we just booked 3 days accommodation in Cairns in January and I have been warned to cancel, as the rainfall in wet season in Cairns may potentially ruin our break. That is not the case in Townsville. Instead we can spend the month doing 'lots' of day trips to Magentic Island, the reef, airlie beach, mission beach, palaranda, wallaman falls, etc... There are a lot of brits here I find, especially in the hospital where I would say 30% have moved here since 2008. We have had no end of offers of support. And of all the brits we have met I would say 95% think this is paradise. Though, many don't like to advertise stating they would rather Townsville stayed small and unknown. Again, its just personal opinion. We loved Brisbane during our brief stay but for me personally I could never live in a larger city after living here. I feel like I live in paradise each day. And there is plenty of cash in my bank to ensure we have a good quality of life before the husband has even started work in the new year.
  2. jac2011

    Nottingham to Townsville on a PR - Family of 5!

    We are in Idalia and it takes between 5-10 minutes to get to the strand. We thought about established however, having looked at all the options knowing we can have exactly the house we want (ie eldest girls bedroom away from the boys etc) we think the newbuilds are better for us. Plus there is the $15k new home grant to go towards the deposit.
  3. jac2011

    Nottingham to Townsville on a PR - Family of 5!

    Wow how strange! Keyworth seems a million years ago now. Even the UK seems like a life that never existed. Hope your friends have a lovely time. Tell them Keyworth is lovely but they should settle over here!
  4. jac2011

    Nottingham to Townsville on a PR - Family of 5!

    Bushland Beach we have found is much further out than it looks on the map! We are in Idalia by the river and I cycled to work in 35 minutes which was lovely, the whole way was cycle paths though I did have to dodge the occasional magpie. Douglas is closer but we haven't explored there yet. Annandale has a lovely reputation, is lovely and calming however we are finding a large proportion of the properties are older and we are hoping for something newer. A block of land in the centre of Annandale would be perfect but unlikely. If you have little ones (under 11) Oonoonba is an excellent free state school.
  5. jac2011

    Nottingham to Townsville on a PR - Family of 5!

    We are so happy with our move and are loving Townsville so far. Feels like we are on a 5 star holiday at the moment!
  6. jac2011

    Nottingham to Townsville on a PR - Family of 5!

    We got ours for 12990 through work as Remserve get some discount. For a brand new car, 5 year warranty with paint and interior protection it seems a bargain. $204 a fortnight out my salary with petrol, servicing, etc all included. We just have the one car though so hubby is driving me around till I take my test in the next few months!
  7. jac2011

    Nottingham to Townsville on a PR - Family of 5!

    We are in a lovely apartment complex in Idalia to get our boys into Oonoonba state school (free and a fantastic rep which beats the private schools). However, in 17 months from now we are hoping to move into a newbuild and may have to move out of the area to get the lovely 5 bed newbuild we have our sites set on! Looking at North Shore (Burdell) at the moment!
  8. jac2011

    Nottingham to Townsville on a PR - Family of 5!

    Not really only the direct local area. As I work 5 days a week and we have been busy getting furniture etc there has been limited time but I am hoping for some annual leave next month :-)
  9. jac2011

    will my criminal conviction be allowed

    Husband has a few similar minor convictions from his youth to his early twenties, a caution or two (cant remember now). He was fine, they didn't even ask him anything. He did submitted all the necessary police checks and didnt hide anything. Filled in Form 80 to discuss each charge briefly.
  10. Sorry folks, its been a long time since I posted! Life has just been full on since we arrived and I have barely even kept in touch with family back home! I suppose I should give you all a run down on our journey over here... Background: We finally secured our visa after 7 and a half years of planning this July. The whole process almost broke our marriage, turned me into the biggest stress head going and resulted in weeks where I was working 70 hours a week just to pay for the visa. It was a difficult last 9 months but once we set off for our plane everything seemed worth it. We left Nottingham after a months worth of goodbyes on a rainy, damp morning heading for the National Express coach that would take us to Heathrow Airport. The journey went really good, it was quiet and went quicker than we thought. As we didn't want a last minute panic we booked for the night before and stayed at a Premier Inn on the M4. This was lovely and relaxing too and just what we needed, apart from the fact I got myself locked out nipping to my husbands room at 2am to look for Paracetamol, unable to wake him up and had no shoes on. I had to go and ask reception to let me back in my room where my children were snoring away. We had our breakfast and then headed to the airport giving ourselves lots of time for a stressful check in. Initially we stopped for some luggage tags before check in but somehow I got the biggest paper cut ever and there was blood everywhere so I had to hunt for a plaster. After the disaster was averted we headed to check in. No queues at all with Etihad and we found out the new A380 we were flying on was pretty much empty and we had a whole cabin almost to ourselves. Check in took a few moments, they weren't too bothered about the weight of the luggage and we went and drank coffee. The plane to Abu Dhabi was amazing, the service from the crew and the flying nanny service was great and we all arrived in Abu Dhabi feeling very fresh. We stayed in a Premier Inn near the city centre that night to catch up, before spending a few hours exploring Yas Mall. Our flight was around 10pm local time so we headed to the airport (which wasn't great) and we soon realised our luck had run out. We boarded the plane after having to go through an additional security process that appeared unorganised and unplanned and then once on board the air con wouldn't work. After nearly fainting and having to stand with the crew we soon set off around an hour or so later. The plane was full to bursting and the whole plane felt so small (B787). We arrived in Brisbane and had an effortless journey through customs before heading to our caravan lodge accomodation in Taigum. It was reasonable for the price and had breakfast included but OMG it was freezing (September) and I had to go and find shoes. Add to which when I awoke at 3am wide awake thanks to jetlag there was no where remotely close to get anything to eat! We relaxed for a few days enjoying Brisbane before heading up to Townsville 4 days later. We were a little apprehensive following some of the reports we had read online but upon driving down the Strand to our holiday accomodation on a Tuesday evening at 7pm to see hundreds of families and diners out and about bbq'ing dining we just knew we were going to love it. I started work the very next day at the local hospital in a job I secured from the UK. They provided 2 weeks holiday accommodation upon arrival on the seafront which was incredible however, we also secured a rental from the UK to move into after 12 days. We bought basic furniture to start with and generally found Super A Mart, K Mart and Fantastic Furniture incredibly well priced. We tried to secure a car loan but were told being so new we would need 20% deposit. However, a few weeks later I bought a brand new Mitsubishi Mirage through salary sacrifice with QLD health for a really good price. It's small and basic but all servicing, tyres, upkeep, petrol etc is included for $204 a fortnight. It's also brand new. Work has been okay, its hectic and a little bit more behind to what I am used too. However, they really respect and value their employee's and the benefits are incredible. So far I have been there 7 weeks and there hasn't been a week where I have not been on training for around 3 or more of those days. I get $750 each 6 months for personal development, 5 weeks holiday, shift allowances and QLD health pay the best nurse rates in Oz. Kids are happy. We were told we wouldn't get family tax benefits unless the children are enrolled at school. My eldest is due to start high school in Jan so the decision was more complicated and we kept her out, however my middle son got into the best state school in the area. It's been great so far. My youngest starts in Jan but being below school age we get family tax benefits for him anyhow. We are still waiting for payment and we have been here 7 weeks, allow plenty of time the application process takes a few attempts. Husband is happier now he has a car to get around, he was a little stressed 4 weeks in with no vehicle but is now loving life. I think he will do great once he is working. Went to look round newbuilds and we are shocked at the prices. We walked into the showhomes thinking this would be way out of our price limit only to find they were on budget. I did years of research and no matter what view you have of the properties online and on realestate, seeing them n person is even better. The locals are so friendly its unbelievable. We've met up with some PIO forum members who have been no end of help in settling. We've had offers of cars, furniture, lifts etc! 10/10 the best thing we ever did. Even the rising humidity isn't dampening our spirit. Its lovely seeing blue skies and 30 degrees each day. Only a few minutes worth of rain in 7 weeks will do for now!
  11. jac2011

    Townsville QLD

    Hi stevegolby we just moved here ourselves, send me a PM and we can get in touch. We moved here in September :-)
  12. jac2011

    10 days to touchdown...

    We leave in 2 days! Congratulations on the move and I hope everything goes well for you.
  13. jac2011

    idea of cost, my head is about to explode!

    If you go on any visa it will have an impact if you stay in Oz too long. My thoughts for you are say you stay 3 years for example, and then your employer cancels your temp visa or the job is not for you (happens a lot on this forum) and you have 90 days to find a new sponsor or leave Oz (a choice which can be taken out of your hands) then imagine having to return to the UK and then finding your children can't get funding or a resident's entry to university. I am not sure the in's and out's of it but I would call a UK university and ask for the admissions department and ask them a few questions about the implications of living in Oz for a few years and returning with university aged children. At a guess, I think your children need to be resident in the UK for 3 years to gain access to student loans and a domestic entry place but I could be wrong.
  14. jac2011

    idea of cost, my head is about to explode!

    Family of 5 here on a PR 189 but I have to warn you... £16k minimum doing it as cheaply as possible. Something to be wary of... If you are out in Aus on a temp visa and return to the UK when that visa expires then your children will not be entitled to student finance etc... Im not 100% on what your children will be classified as but it will have a major impact on them if they want to go to university. Also if your children are step-children you will need permission from their father or permission from a court.
  15. jac2011

    Are you moving to Australia in 2015?

    Well 2 weeks today we will be staying at Heathrow! So excited!