John Wagner beat off competition from 60 other regional airports to attract the Flying Kangaroo.
John Wagner beat off competition from 60 other regional airports to attract the Flying Kangaroo.

Wagner lures the Flying Kangaroo

QANTAS is spending up big in Queensland, with part of the Dreamliner fleet now based in Brisbane and the airline's pilot training academy to be based at the Wagner's Wellcamp airport on the Darling Downs.

"Big John" Wagner beat off competition from 60 other regional airports to attract the Flying Kangaroo, which will train up to 250 pilots a year at Wellcamp and create up to 160 jobs in training and support roles.

 

Illustration of John Wagner by Brett Lethbridge.
Illustration of John Wagner by Brett Lethbridge.

 

We know the Q in Qantas stands for Queensland but what about the rumour being spread by some wags that the full title now should stand for "Queensland and Near Toowoomba Aerial Service."

Qantas was the first airline to service the airport followed by REX Airlines, Airnorth and Cathay Pacific Cargo.

MANGO MADNESS

THE famous Brisbane Markets Mango Charity Auction this week attracted a bid of $13,000 for the season's first tray of the tropical fruit. A nice pile of coin, but City Beat spies at Rocklea note this was much lower than in prior years.

Last year, the first tray attracted a bid of $29,000 while in 2012 it was a record-breaking $76,000.

"The fact that you have to go back to the GFC to find prices this low should scare the bejesus out of the market community," says our spy.

"The broader economy is going great guns."

You might recall it's not all happy families out at Brisbane Markets with concerns about fee increases and rent rises squeezing market operators.

BABY BONUS

CONGRATULATIONS to National Retail Association boss Dominique Lamb and husband Tony Kuhlmann who welcomed the safe arrival of a baby girl, Wilhelmina, this week.

Brisbane-based Lamb said 'Minnie' was the newest addition to a long line of savvy female retailers, citing her mother and her immigrant grandmother as inspirational business owners who carved up what had been a traditionally male-owned industry.

Weighing in at 7lb 7ozs and 50cm long, it may be a few years yet before she follows in her mother's, grandmother's and great-grandmother's retailing footsteps!



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