The Palmer Coolum resort had its gates closed yesterday with no cars being allowed through to the resort. Photo: Nicola Brander / Sunshine Coast Daily.
The Palmer Coolum resort had its gates closed yesterday with no cars being allowed through to the resort. Photo: Nicola Brander / Sunshine Coast Daily. Nicola Brander

Benny Pike doubts he would work for Clive Palmer again

OLYMPIAN Benny Pike was among the 40 employees who have lost their jobs at the Palmer Coolum Resort.

A frustrated Mr Pike told how the employees had an inkling something was up when the resort's website closed down on Friday.

But employees only became aware of the seriousness of the situation when told to attend a "mass meeting at 11am".

Mr Pike said human resource management from billionaire Clive Palmer's mining interest in Townsville had been sent down to break the news.

"They sacked everybody, the only person left is Simon (Stodart, the general manager) and some of the chefs from the Palmer Grill," he said

"They have also kept the golfing side as that is the only side that was making money."

He said the Townsville human resources manager had informed employees "this is going to happen, you will be called in to groups shortly".

Mr Pike was initially optimistic he wouldn't lose his job, which has been on-and-off with Mr Palmer since June 2012. For the past 12 months he was employed in the golfing department.

"I knew golf was okay as they had had a meeting with Clive last week on the Gold Coast and were talking about building the golf department up.

Mr Pike said some employees were "in tears" after the meeting.

"No one believes he is closing it for refurbishment."

The former Olympic great was planning another trip to Centrelink this week to discuss going on unemployment benefits once again. Mr Pike said he doubted he would reapply if a position ever became available again, as was being promised yesterday.

"Under the present ownership, why would you?" he said.