Graham Collyer, 33, suffered serious facial injuries in the shooting and is being treated at the Royal Hobart Hospital. His girlfriend's daughter, 15-year-old Sarah Loughton, was killed.
His mother, Diane Collyer, of Lilleker Rise, Arnold, Nottingham, said: "I saw him being carried on a stretcher. We were just numb."
She said Mr Collyer's aunt and uncle had flown out out to see him. "They called yesterday and said he was making good progress. He is conscious and as comfortable as can be."
Mr Collyer's son, Gareth, aged nine, and daughter, Emma, 12, also live in Nottingham. They saw pictures of their blood-soaked father in the British papers.
Mr Collyer emigrated from Nottingham to Australia six years ago with his wife, Mandy, but they split up. He now lives in Melbourne. He was on holiday in Port Arthur and should have been celebrating his birthday yesterday. It is thought he was eating in a crowded cafe when the gunman struck.