A former sparkie and a registered nurse from central-west New South Wales are making a name for themselves in the beef industry with hopes of one day owning their own property.
Tim and Sasha Thornbury, along with their two children, live and work on Haydon Station located 50kms east of Normanton in the Gulf of Carpentaria.
The couple, who have no family ties to the beef world, have since started the process of building their commercial cattle enterprise.
Tim and Sasha, both originally from Nyngan in New South Wales, began their venture north more than a decade ago.
"I am originally an electrician by trade and Sasha a registered nurse," Tim said.
"My parents weren't on a property, but my grandparents and extended family had ties to the land through sheep and cropping backgrounds.
"Sasha's family own country and also farm sheep in the Nyngan area."
After working in Nyngan for a period of time, the couple moved to north-west Queensland to work on various properties.
"The first property we ever worked on was in Julia Creek," Tim said.
"It's what we loved to do - we loved chasing cattle.
"It got to a stage where we had put in a lot of hard work and our skills were fairly developed, so it was time to move on."
Tim and Sasha moved further north to live and work full-time on Haydon Station owned by Luke and Helen Simmons. Five years later, the pair haven't looked back.
The couple have since welcomed two children and begun their own cattle enterprise journey.
Tim and Sasha adjist land through the Simmons family and utilised a 'first start loan' through the Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority (QRIDA) to expand their breeder herd.
Tim said the idea was sparked through an old-fashioned yarn in the shed.
"I was talking with Luke in the shed about budgets for our own property,' he said.
"I really wanted to make something for my family.
"Sasha and I were thinking we may have to go back to our old trades.
"Luke said 'I may be able to help you out'."
That he did. The Simmons family allowed the couple to adjist cattle on their property whilst still working full-time.
"I thought I was dreaming," Tim said.
"We owe Luke and Helen everything.
"The support of our families have also played a huge part."
The couple run Brahman cross cattle and utilised the QRIDA loan to build the foundations of their own beef business.
Beginning with 250 head of breeders, Tim said they used the loan to increase their breeder herd numbers to 500.
"We purchased young breeder heifers mostly across north-west and central Queensland," Tim said.
"We took a few risks because we knew once the drought broke cattle prices would go through the roof.
"We've had a crack and it's paid off."
Tim and Sasha have also worked with Allan and Leonie Trail of Elmo Brahmans, Baralaba, to introduce bulls into their herd.
"I rang Allan and said 'I like your bulls'," Tim said.
"I told him our scenario and he got pretty excited.
"Allan and Leonie have such a strong reputation and quality bulls. They have been a massive help."
Moving forward the couple hope to retain their cattle numbers and continue growing their company.
"We're going to have a good number of weaners every year that we can turn off and have options with whether we start retaining heifers, which is what we would like to do, or start selling them and buying mature age heifers to go into calf," Tim said.
"Eventually we will be pushing up around the 1000-breeder herd every year.
"We hope to also one day own our own property."
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