Local horseman returns home

18 October 2017

After cutting his teeth on cattle stations in the country’s far north, Oakey local Matthew Parker has returned to his home country as a Stockman for Acland Pastoral Company.

A keen horseman who grew up on a cattle farm about 7km from New Acland Mine, Matthew began working for Acland Pastoral in February after impressing them with his solid mustering experience and natural riding ability.

"I’d always hoped to return home and continue farming but landing a role locally had always been tricky," Matthew said.

"A lot of farms here at home are small family operations that don’t need extra staff, and my own family farm wasn’t big enough to sustain both me and my parents."

"Acland Pastoral gave me the opportunity to come home and put my experience to good use locally."

"Moving up north in search of work really helped me hone my craft because the cattle stations in the Territory and far-north Queensland are huge and you learn a hell of a lot."

No stranger to the co-existence of mining and agriculture, Matthew’s parents continue to farm a stone’s throw from New Acland Mine, where his father also works as a machinery operator.

Soon after starting his first job up north, Matthew was introduced to bronc riding and quickly jumped into the competitive rodeo circuit.

"The head stockman where I was working up north got me into riding broncs," Matthew said.

"I’d been breaking in horses for a few years so I took to it pretty naturally and I really enjoyed getting to travel all over Queensland and Western Australia competing."

"Acland Pastoral is a big supporter of the local circuit here at home, especially the Brymaroo Rodeo and Campdraft Committee."

"Over the years its supported the Brymaroo events with sponsorship money or cattle, and it’s a nice personal link for me because I’ve been volunteering at the Brymaroo events since I was a kid."