Family reinvents themselves after fire destroys everything
THE Collins and Towells family have turned their lives around after they lost everything in the 2018 Deepwater fires.
One of the most prized possessions lost was Scott Collins' extensive record collection, which just over a year later he's rebuilding and sharing his love of music with the region.
Mr Collins' wife Narelle Towells and son Joshua Towells opened gift store cafe The Big Record Diner in Bororen in November.
"I thought I'll stick a big record on the top of the roof and then we added Elvis and Freddie Mercury to each side and maybe sell records," Mr Collins said.
The gift store sells a variety of items, from music memorabilia and handmade jewellery to watches and baby clothes. It also features an arcade machine.
In the cafe Ms Towells cooks the baked goods, including pies, sausage rolls and cakes, while Mr Towells prepares the hot meals.
The family has come a long way since the fires destroyed their home of four years on Capricornia Dr in 2018, just months after their son moved in.
"This is picking up the pieces of our life," Mr Collins said.
"When your house burns down and you lose direction.
"This opportunity came up and we decided to take it."
The cafe, located where the Baked Bean Cafe used to be, also buys records.
"It's a passion, you could even call it an obsession," Mr Collins said.
"I'm always looking for more records."
Mr Collins supports Gladstone region businesses where he can, purchasing meat, produce, honey and milk from other locals.
The cafe was something Ms Towells and her son had always envisioned doing, even before the fires.
They have big hopes for the future, with plans to host parties and eventually start a market for Bororen.
The Big Record Diner
Open: 6am - 4pm Monday to Tuesday, Thursday to Sunday; 6am - noon Wednesday; dinner by reservation
Address: 35 Dougall St, Bororen
Phone: 0417 790 756