August 26, 2017
Wooroolin Railway Station will be returned to its original location and a modern shed showcasing historic agricultural machinery will be erected near it, thanks to a $32,784 grant from the Gambling Community Benefit Fund (GCBF).
The project will be carried our by the Wooroolin Lions Club, who were one of the successful applicants in Round 93 of fund’s grants program.
The town’s railway station building was moved to the Wooroolin Sportsgrounds by the former Kingaroy Shire Council when the Kingaroy-Theebine railway line shut down.
While it was once well-used by local sports groups, the Sportsgrounds have steadily fallen into disuse over the years.
The Lions Club believe the conversion of the former railway line into the South Burnett Rail Trail will provide an opportunity to turn the building into a tourist attraction if it is returned to a location near the town’s free overnight parking area.
Lynnsay Fryer, from Kerrie B’s Bikery in Wooroolin, said he had recently encouraged Wooroolin businesses that made money from tourism to begin discussing ways they could leverage traffic that is already being brought to the town by the Wooroolin Wetlands, the South Burnett Rail Trail and the free camping area.
Apart from his own bike tour business, the town’s two cafes, the Wooroolin Hotel and a recently opened bed and breakfast all stand to gain from any increase in tourist numbers.
Lynnsay said he hadn’t heard about the Lions’ proposal, but was in favour of anything that encouraged more people to stop off in the town and thought fellow tourism operators would feel the same.
In all, fourteen South Burnett community organisations will share $365,393 in grants from the latest GCFB grants round.
Successful applicants were announced on Friday.
The latest round follows hard on the heels of Round 92 winners, which were announced in early July.
In that Round, 17 South Burnett community groups shared $306,569 in grants.
The GCBF is a state-wide government funding program which collects revenue generated by gambling and channels it into not-for-profit organisations.
The Fund distributes an average of $53 million each year.
Groups can apply online for grants of up to $35,000 (inclusive of GST) on a quarterly basis.
In April this year, Queensland Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath announced that the priority for the next four rounds of funding would be to assist areas impacted by Tropical Cyclone Debbie, which includes the South Burnett.
The rounds this will apply to are Round 92, which closed on February 28; Round 93, which closed on May 31; and rounds 94 and 95.
Applications for Round 94 will close at 11:59pm on Thursday, August 31.
The successful local Round 93 applicants were: