We’d like to introduce you to our new Facilities Manager Neil Cairns, but first we’d like to thank Ben Salk for his hard work in the role these past 18 months, and wish him all the best with his future pursuits. Thank you Ben!
Neil comes to us directly from The Brisbane Powerhouse where he worked for 17 years, 6 of those as Precinct Director.
For those of you who don’t know the Powerhouse, it is a former power station and now a premier Arts and Festival venue on the banks of the Brisbane River, hosting over 1,000 performances a year as well as hundreds of weddings and events.
As Precinct Director Neil was responsible for Operations, Health and Safety, and the IT side of things. Neil sums it up as “giving everyone what they need to be able to do their job”.
Neil loved his time at the Powerhouse but was ready for a new challenge and jumped at the opportunity to work at Ivorys Rock. After his job interview Neil was given a tour of the site which left him hoping even more that his application was successful. Neil said he is “amazed at both the size and the beauty of the property, and is honoured to be a part of the team”.
It’s also worth noting the considerable experience Neil brings from the Entertainment Industry, where he began his working life backstage in Productions, in lighting and sound. He has worked in every venue in Brisbane including La Boîte, The Queensland Theatre Company and toured with many shows in regional towns.
Neil and his partner live in the western suburbs of Brisbane with their 2 young children about 30 mins drive from Ivory’s Rock.
It’s been a very unusual start for Neil with all the restrictions Coronavirus has brought.
All commercial event bookings have been postponed and the site is temporarily closed with the exception of a few essential staff who are on reduced hours. We are very fortunate that the Australian Government is supporting people during this time with Jobkeeper payments.
Neil says “Its been quite surreal with no people or activities. I’m using the time to go through the maintenance tasks so they are ready to go when restrictions are lifted. Apart from keeping the essential services operating, I’m also tailoring existing Maintenance Software systems to fit our needs.”
Fortunately Neil was able to see the venue in action shadowing Ben during The Earth Frequency Festival and also having a 3 week handover with Ben to familiarise himself with the site’s operations.
Welcome Neil, we look forward to working with you at the next Amaroo Event!