Welcome to our newest feature which local Australian Councils can use to communicate with the broader community. We'll be including contributions from Councils around the country and you never know what interesting information you'll be able to find here. If you are involved with a Council in Australia and you'd like to make use of this free service, please use the contact form under CONTACT US to get in touch.
2018 Grandparent Of The Year Award winner Pauline Weatherall lives in the Balonne Council area of Queensland.
Originally inhabited by the Kamilaroi Aboriginal people, Ula Ula (believed to be derived from an Aboriginal word meaning water lilies or ripples on water) was created on 11 November 1879 as one of 74 Divisions around Queensland. The Borough of St George, a separate municipality, was gazetted on 31 July 1884, but on 13 March 1886 it was abolished and amalgamated back into Ula Ula Division. On 11 March 1903, Ula Ula was renamed Balonne (believed to be of Aboriginal origin meaning water or running stream after the Balonne River). With the passage of the Local Authorities Act 1902, Balonne Division became Shire of Balonne on 31 March 1903.
Located inland, about 500km from the Queensland capital of Brisbane, the Shire serves as a bridge between the expanse of the great outback to its west and the Great Dividing Range and Brisbane to its east. Most of the population lives in the main township of St George, then the smaller townships of Bollon, Dirranbandi, Hebel, Mungindi, Nindigully and Thallon.
Known for rich history, friendly locals, bird life, wide open spaces and a relaxed country lifestyle, traditionally, the Shire’s economy has been built around agriculture, in particular the production of cotton, grain, sheep and cattle. Growth has been shown in new areas such as tourism, and horticultural crops such as grapes, onions, and garlic.
Annual events held throughout the Shire include:
An exciting new Pop Up Gallery initiative - created to provide an opportunity for local artists of all forms to display their work for free – is housed in the St George Library. While each artist will be responsible for the installation, dismantling and sale of their works, each exhibition will last two months, and feature a range of exhibition styles rotating from quilting, to paintings, silk stitching and photography.
A few of the many major features of the Shire include Sandytown River Cruises, The Unique Egg, Riversands Wines, St George Golf Club, the St George Showgrounds as well as National Parks, State Forests and Heritage Centres.
2018 Community Service Grandparent Of The Year Award winner Julie Sullivan lives in the Council area of Kojonup, Western Australia.
Kojonup is located 256 km south-east of Perth, Western Australia along Albany Highway.
The Kojonup region has been inhabited by the Noongar Aboriginal people of Western Australia for many thousands of years. The name Kojonup is believed to refer to the ‘Kodja’ or stone axe made by Indigenous Australians, from the local stone. A visit to The Kodja Place allows visitors to sample the farm experience and lifestyles while learning the heartfelt stories of early settlers, the aspirations of the young and the community hopes for the future. One can sit on the school bus, drive the farm ute, walk the boards on the snazziest shearing shed you will ever see - and can even check the rain gauge and the farm budget. Aboriginal Noongar tours through the landmarks of Kojonup, and purchase Noongar arts and craft from the Kojonup Visitor Centre are a must.
It was in 1837 that British surveyors and soldiers arrived from nearby Albany and a military settlement alongside the natural freshwater springs was established.
Forty-five minutes west of Kojonup are the world-class wineries of Frankland, and the superb virgin olive oils pressed from picturesque groves. Kojonup boasts one of Western Australia’s most outstanding regional golf courses as well as trail rides through the bush or watersking at Lake Towerinning. There’s always a cold beer to enjoy at the bar of the Commercial Hotel, Western Australia's oldest continually licensed hotel.
The Annual Wildflower Festival in September/October showcases the native blooms for which Western Australia is world famous.
Kojonup Shire President, Ronnie Fleay, oversees a progressive Council whose focus is on growing the area while enhancing local entities. The Shire of Kojonup feels their efforts will continue to enhance a great way for the community to gather together and discuss aspirations for Kojonup and the lifestyle residents wish to share and enjoy.
Concept Plans that the Shire is currently looking at include -
The Kodja Place Precinct Master Plan
East & West Access – Sporting Precinct
Nature Playground – Sporting Precinct
Harrison Place/Memorial Hall Concept Plans
Health Services Precinct (Medical Centre)
RSL Hall/APEX Park/CWA Building/Men’s Shed
Sports Precinct Master Plan
Main Street Renewal Strategy