Back Roads: July 31

Guest presenter Tom Forrest is in the far south-west Queensland town of Cunnamulla.

In Monday’s Back Roads guest presenter is Yorta Yorta man Tom Forrest in far south-west Queensland town of Cunnamulla.

Known as ‘Outback Tom’ he has developed a huge TikTok following when he explores bush cooking and other antics with his grandad.

Tom hits the road and discovers a town that’s determined not to let a dark past define it. Once a segregated town, which has had its fair share of controversy, Cunnamulla is undergoing an incredible transformation.

Tom meets local artist and Kooma man, Uncle Andrew Nelson, who reveals the uncomfortable truths of the past but also shows how art and self-determination can help heal old wounds.

Locals show Tom how Cunnamulla’s next generation is being empowered through sport, literally, when he takes on the kids of the Cunnamulla Junior League.

Even the Queensland Police are building bridges. In how many towns do you find police driving a car that kids have covered in graffiti? Tom meets police liaison officer Nik van Niekek, and goes for a spin with him in this much-loved car, which helps local teenagers clock up their learner driver hours.

Tom explores the local delicacy of a camel burger and meets James Clark, the owner and editor of one of Australia’s last independently owned newspapers, the Warrego Watchman. James is also a sheep grazier and puts Tom to work mustering on a motorbike and turning his hand to sheep shearing. Can ‘Outback Tom’ live up to his TikTok name?

8pm Monday on ABC.

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