Descendents pay tribute at Gheerulla 125 years on
IN 1891 three young men from the Enoggera district of Brisbane - John McGinn, Edward Pickering and Richard Sims - settled near Yahoo Creek (now known as Gheerulla Creek).
Harry Pickering and Alex McGinn joined the group shortly thereafter.
Two months prior to their arrival, land had been taken up by Christopher Sharry.
The same year Duncan Beattie was appointed manager of Kenilworth Run by Isaac Moore.
Many years later, in 1940, Main Roads Commission released plans to reroute what is now known as Eumundi-Kenilworth Rd with the building of a new bridge over Gheerulla Creek.
This new bridge was to replace a 'light traffic bridge' built in 1927 by the community.
The commission planned to resume 1.6ha of land including the natural rainforest on the bank of the creek.
The owner of the property, Bert Sims, requested the Kenilworth Chamber of Commerce to advise the commission that he was prepared to donate the land on the basis that it be made a lasting memorial to the pioneer farmers of the Kenilworth district.
This land remained untouched until 1979 when Councillor Bert Sims was able, through the utilisation of Federal Drought Relief monies and a great deal of volunteer labour, to fulfil his dream of seeing the memorial park established.
It was quite fitting that on Sunday, October 16, about 100 descendants of the Beattie, McGinn, Pearce, Pickering, Sharry and Sims pioneers celebrated in Pioneer Park, Gheerulla 125 years since the time of the first land selections in the Gheerulla locality.
Family members travelled from across Queensland to attend and a great family picnic was enjoyed throughout the day.
Senior members of each family who spoke to the assembled group were Tom Sims (Richard Sims' grandson), Kevin, McGinn (Alex McGinn's grandson), Gwen Welch (John McGinn's granddaughter), Kathleen Janssen (Christopher Sharry's granddaughter) and Paul Trappett (Duncan Beattie's great-grandson).