Meet the couple taking over Birdsville pub

Meet the couple taking over Birdsville pub

Life & Style
FAMILY: Courtney and Talia Ellis with Sierra, 2, and Jonty, two months, in Birdsville. Their older children Harry, 11, Sophie, 14, and Alexandra, 16, also often make the trip.

FAMILY: Courtney and Talia Ellis with Sierra, 2, and Jonty, two months, in Birdsville. Their older children Harry, 11, Sophie, 14, and Alexandra, 16, also often make the trip.

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A famous Queensland pub is set to change hands for the first time in 40 years.

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A famous Queensland pub is set to change hands for the first time in 40 years - and the new owners hail from Albury.

The Birdsville Hotel has been bought for around $6 million by businessman Courtney Ellis and wife Talia.

The couple expect to take over the 130-year-old hotel next week with plans to "play an active role" in the business run by management.

Mr Ellis co-founded travel company Outback Spirit with his brother Andre 20 years ago and sold the business to Journey Beyond last year.

"We decided to have a slight change of direction, as years go by we want to slow down a fraction," he said.

OUTBACK: The Ellis family have been spending time in Birdsville for years including many camping trips.

OUTBACK: The Ellis family have been spending time in Birdsville for years including many camping trips.

"We have been going to Birdsville for many years now and it is somewhere we love taking our five kids.

"So when the opportunity to buy the pub came up we jumped at it."

Mrs Ellis has been an outback pilot since 2009 and will continue to fly their family to Birdsville.

"We will be spending more and more time up there, but Albury is home," Mr Ellis said.

"We 'get' the outback as it's been my business for 20 years, and we won't change things.

NEW OWNERS: Mr Ellis said the pub will continue to be run by the management staff but they plan to have "an active role" in the hotel. Photo: Birdsville Hotel

NEW OWNERS: Mr Ellis said the pub will continue to be run by the management staff but they plan to have "an active role" in the hotel. Photo: Birdsville Hotel

"Our focus will still be on making the experience satisfying for people who make the long trek out to Birdsville and I'm looking forward to talking to people and hearing about where they've come from and where they're going.

"The Birdsville Hotel is a significant drawcard, and we're very respectful of that long, and proud, tradition."

Ben Fullagar will remain as general manager of the hotel and said the next step was a positive one for the preservation of the pub.

"This is a really positive next chapter for the pub and our community and supporters can expect the same experience that we've always offered here," he said.

"The beers will be cold and the welcomes will be warm."

Mr Ellis said many people made the trip to Birdsville each year, and he encouraged them to pop in for a beer and to say g'day.

The story Meet the couple taking over Birdsville pub first appeared on The Border Mail.

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