FORMER Ballarat boy Taite Radley gained national attention last year after stealing the heart of blonde beauty Ali Oetjen on The Bachelorette.
We spoke to the 29-year-old bank manager and personal trainer about what keeps bringing him — and Ali — back to Ballarat.
What’s your Ballarat story?
"I was born in Stawell, grew up in Horsham until I was 15 and then moved to Ballarat for school (at Ballarat Clarendon College). I moved away to travel Australia in 2014, working for a fitness marketing company. I then moved back to Ballarat to figure out the next stages in my life. This is where I started a career in banking. I always end up coming back to Ballarat. Both Mum and Dad still live in Ballarat, as well as my dog Mack, who lives with them. Home for me now is in Brunswick."
Do you get back to Ballarat very often?
"I get back to Ballarat at least once a month. I love getting back, catching up with family and exploring all the new coffee shops. There seems to be something new opening up every time I’m back."
How much has life changed for you since The Bachelorette?
"Life has changed a little but not too much. I still work at the bank, but have taken up extra work as a personal trainer. This has always been a massive passion of mine. The only thing now is I get stopped everywhere I go. People are very friendly and want to know if I’m still with Ali. I couldn’t ask for a better relationship."
What are some of your favourite memories of Ballarat?
"My best memories of Ballarat include walking around Lake Wendouree with my dog, sipping on countless lattes at coffee shops, and celebrating Australia Day. This is a massive day in Ballarat with activities everywhere."
What do you love most about Ballarat?
"I love the culture and buildings — it’s like something out of Europe — also the hospitality you get in the bars and cafes."
Ballarat’s best kept secret?
"The cafes and bars. There are so many that you can spend the whole weekend just getting lost in them."
Which Ballarat event are you most looking forward to in 2019?
"White Night. Everyone I spoke to said last year was amazing. I’m so keen to check it out."
What are the chances of you moving back to Ballarat with Ali one day?
"It might be sooner rather than later 😉"