Many years ago I was in Tambo, a small country town on the Landsborough Highway in Western Queensland and was desperate to buy myself a Tambo Teddy. Not because I love teddy bears, but because I just love the story behind these beautiful creations. But alas, they were closed when I was passing through.
Fast forward 10 years, and here I am again making a stop in this proud town.
But first, let me tell you the story of Tambo Teddies.
With wool prices flailing, and the region in the grips of drought, the need to come up with something to drive the local economy was paramount. In a stroke of ingenuity, not uncommon in country towns, a couple of decades ago, the Tambo Teddy concept was born.
Each teddy is handmade with love and care in Tambo using Australian wool, they are even stuffed with wool, and are given a special name. The first name is the name of a property in the region and it’s coupled with a Christian name starting with the same letter.
When we arrived to view these cuddly creations we were spoilt for choice. Do we get a Biccie Bear for my youngest? We were told with all the love they receive they probably last a couple of years before getting pretty ratty. Or we could go for a smaller echidna – one for each of my boys to add to their collection? Or do we really splurge and get a bear for each boy and hope like hell they don’t play with the cuddly toys too much so they can hand them down to their children?
With so many choices we decided to mull it over a sandwich from the café a couple of doors down. Here we finally decided on the one teddy – a family addition, which will stay with us for our future grandchildren to play with.
So without further ado, we have welcomed Claudedale Clancy. Teddy number 41,275.
We love him!
PS: When you visit Tambo Teddies ask about the original prototype – it was on display when we were there and it is still in pretty good nick!