Wendy Brownrigg and David Neale, of Bairnsdale Camping and Outdoors have just celebrated 25 years in business. Bairnsdale Camping and Outdoors opened its door for trading in prime retail premises at 162 Main Street in mid 1996.
In 1998, the business outgrew its position and moved to its current location in a much larger shop at 220 Main Street Bairnsdale.
Despite significant competition from chain stores and online retailers, Bairnsdale Camping and Outdoors continues to be one of the region’s favourite independent and locally owned shops. With a wealth of local knowledge and extensive experience in outdoor camping and travel, it is easy to see why the business is still going strong.
While Wendy was born and grew up in Bairnsdale she had done a great deal of travelling in Australia and overseas. David grew up with family camping trips when he was younger and then into cubs and scouts. He moved to the area in 1977 to work at a school outdoor education centre on the Banksia Peninsula on Lake Victoria doing activities such as caving, rock climbing, kayaking, horse riding and bush walking. The two met while members of the Bairnsdale Bushwalking Club. Despite their love of travel, Wendy and David both agree that East Gippsland is their favourite destination and feel lucky to live here with a wealth of playgrounds.
That is why Bairnsdale Camping and Outdoor has camping and outdoor gear for the rivers, lakes, mountains and the snow. Whenever possible, they stock Australian made products as well as locally made camping equipment. They offer advice and recommendations to customers to ensure they get the best thing for them and are not afraid to admit when they don’t have the answer. David and Wendy only sell good quality products, so if neither of them wouldn’t use it, they will not stock it. They would rather a customer go out without purchasing , than to sell them something that was not suitable for purpose. David and Wendy have chosen to maintain independent as retailers, as this means that they have control over what is stocked on the shelf.
Their greatest satisfaction in being in business for 25 years is the returning satisfied customers.