Time beats heritage list

IT is already too late to preserve at least two examples of the Gympie Region’s built history, because of the poor and rapidly declining state of both structures, regional councillors said yesterday.

Although they do not expect their views to be acted on, councillors resolved to notify the Department of Environment and Resource Management that it would not support proposed Heritage listing of the Spring Valley cattle dip at Chatsworth and the Kandanga Fruit and Vegetable Growers Co-op shed.

Other structures put forward by the department for inclusion on the Queensland Heritage Register are the old Gympie Ambulance Station in Crown Rd, the picturesque Imbil Railway Bridge, the Mary Valley Railway Cream Sheds, the Gympie Town Hall Reserve at the Five Ways intersection and the MVHR-operated Old Gympie Railway Station in Tozer St.

Council Planning and Development Committee chairman Ian Petersen said the problem with the dip was that its structure, a corrugated iron roof and timber frame, was “just about completely fallen down.”

“They took in the yards and fences, but they’re not original anyway,” Cr Petersen said.

“I expressed concerns because I thought, ‘Here’s another bottomless pit for council money.”

He said he had similar concerns about the Kandanga fruit and vegetable shed, which he said was in a state of “abject collapse.”

“Fair enough, Kandanga was the first railway siding to start exporting bulk pineapples, but the shed was not pivotal.

“The goods yard may qualify though,” he said.

Cr Jan Watt expressed mixed feelings on the Kandanga shed.

“It would be an impost to be responsible for maintaining it, but the pineapple industry has great significance,” she said.

Information from DERM to the meeting said the ambulance station was already on the council’s own Heritage Register.

The “Cream Sheds” cover the Dagun, Amamoor, Kandanga and Melawondi railway stations.

The Town Hall Reserve covers the Town Hall, the art deco toilet block and the former maternity building, the DERM report said.

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