Murgon Show Society president Alan Trim with the fallen electricity pole which has also pulled other poles out of alignment

October 21, 2021

Monday afternoon’s storm has forced the Murgon Show Society to find an alternative venue for their October rodeo.

The rodeo had been planned to go ahead at the Murgon Showgrounds on October 30 but has now been shifted to Goomeri Showgrounds due to damage at the grounds and the loss of power.

A large electricity pole was blown on to the roof of the market stalls building.

Show Society president Alan Trim said the falling pole had compromised at least three other poles – including one beside the Cattlemen’s Bar – which had been pulled out of alignment by the connecting powerlines.

Showground neighbours rang Ergon Energy when the pole fell and crews came out to disconnect the electricity.

“I’m certain it went off with a bang!” volunteer Sharon Trim said.

As well as forcing the relocation of the rodeo, the loss of power has also cost the Show Society food which had been stored in a freezer.

But there was one bright spot for the association … the damaged infrastructure was still the responsibility of the South Burnett Regional Council when the incident occurred.

If the storm had hit just days later, it would have been a totally different story.

Murgon Show Society has big plans to develop the lower half of the showgrounds site.

In mid-September, they made an informal presentation to Council to outline their plans for some of the showground’s infrastructure, including the cattle stalls, Cattlemen’s Bar and stockyards.

They have already received grants to construct a second bar / canteen near the eastern corner of the site and also hope to erect a toilet block nearby.

Other proposed short-term projects included ploughing the bottom oval, removing an unused cricket pitch and installing a sand arena.

They wanted improve the showground’s financial viability by making it capable of hosting more events but also reinvigorate the grounds in time for Murgon Show’s Centenary in 2023.

At October’s Council meeting, officers recommended Council transfer the identified buildings over to the Show Society because it was in the public interest to do so.

They said the buildings were in poor condition and were at the end of their useful life.

This would allow Council to remove the written down value  – $608,730 – from Council’s asset register. The cost of building applications for the demolition and replacement of the buildings would be borne by the Show Society.

The motion to transfer ownership of the identified buildings to the Murgon Pastoral, Agricultural and Horticultural Society Inc was moved by Cr Kathy Duff, seconded by Cr Gavin Jones and carried unanimously.

But the meeting also noted the fallen power pole had occurred while the buildings were still Council’s responsibility.

Inquiries were now being made with Council’s insurers.

UPDATE October 23: The Murgon Show Society has advised the rodeo they had hoped to run at Goomeri has now been cancelled. They now plan to run this event at Murgon Showgrounds in July 2022.

The pole smashed into the roof of the market stalls building …
… the wires came dangerously close to the ground and the crossbar punched a hole in the roof

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