Terry Fleischfresser, from T&C Painters, has been repainting the interior of a caravan as a freebie to help local homeless people … South Burnett CTC plans to use the secondhand van to provide emergency temporary accommodation

August 23, 2021

A real estate sales boom across the South Burnett may be good news for property owners but it is becoming increasingly bad news for renters.

The topic of homelessness was hotly debated at the Nanango Tourism and Development Association’s August meeting last Thursday night.

NaTDA secretary Jane Erkens said her Nanango Real Estate business was seeing increasing numbers of good, long-term tenants forced to seek new accommodation coupled with an increasing shortage of rental properties.

This was because a large number of former rental properties have been sold to owner-occupiers recently.

The result was the already tight rental market was becoming even tighter and some former tenants were at risk of becoming homeless.

The meeting was told Nanango – and the South Burnett in general – had a lack of social housing options. Welfare agencies estimated the region now had as many as 100 homeless people.

The current rental crisis appeared likely to expand that figure – or lead to an exodus of residents – unless the issue was addressed.

The meeting was told that in recent years South Burnett Regional Council had moved out of providing housing because it recognised it was poorly equipped to manage tenancy issues.

Mrs Erkens she had raised the issue of homelessness with Federal Member for Maranoa David Littleproud, State Member for Nanango Deb Frecklington and South Burnett Mayor Brett Otto but none appeared to have a solution to the problem at present.

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The Heritage Nanango Country Music Muster will go ahead as planned this year because interstate lockdowns haven’t dented its entertainment line-up (Photo: Denise Keelan Photography)

Nanango’s Heritage Country Music Muster will go ahead this year, despite the recent cancellations of similar events in Gympie and Murgon.

Nanango Show Society spokesperson Barbara Hughes told the NaTDA meeting that because Nanango’s Muster drew most of its performers from Queensland, its entertainment line-up had not been significantly affected by interstate pandemic lockdowns.

Barbara said only a small number of acts had to pull out of this year’s event, and these had all been replaced.

And while the Show Society was expecting fewer interstate caravanners at this year’s Muster, the number of Queensland caravanners usually exceeded the showgrounds’ capacity and had to find spaces elsewhere.

So organisers hoped van bookings would be the same or only slightly less than usual.

The Heritage Country Music Muster will be held at Nanango’s Showgrounds over four days on September 9-12.

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Nanango’s annual Heritage Christmas Carnival will be capped off by fireworks this year to help celebrate the bank’s 20th birthday … the community-owned bank opened its doors in 2001

Nanango’s popular Christmas Carnival will be enlivened by fireworks this year, thanks to a grant from Heritage Nanango Community Funding (HNCF).

HNCF are a regular sponsor of the carnival, which was revived by NaTDA with Heritage’s support in 2018 after eight years in abeyance.

This year, Heritage Nanango Community Funding will be celebrating 20 years of operation and told NaTDA they will be extending their Christmas Carnival contribution for fireworks to mark this significant milestone.

In all, the Heritage branch have contributed an estimated to $4.5 million back to community since the locally-owned branch was founded in 2001.

This amount does not include the wages of local people employed to run the branch; the purchase of the branch’s site at the corner of Drayton and Fitzroy streets; or portions of some community projects – such as CCTV coverage of the CBD – that were co-funded using government grants.

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  • NaTDA meets monthly at the Nanango RSL and membership is open to anyone who would like to advance tourism and/or business interests in Nanango and its districts. Membership is $20 a year and intending members are welcome to email the president for details of the next meeting.

[UPDATED with correction]

Anderssons Fruit Market for quality fruits and vegetables


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