News

What was Mary Valley State College before 2002?

TAKE TWO: The second Imbil school,   built in 1916, was the Imbil State School. The first was a provisional school built nearby in 1897 and was mainly for the education of the children of workers at Imbil Station and other properties in the area.
TAKE TWO: The second Imbil school, built in 1916, was the Imbil State School. The first was a provisional school built nearby in 1897 and was mainly for the education of the children of workers at Imbil Station and other properties in the area. Contributed

BEFORE it was Mary Valley State College, it was Imbil State School.

The name of the school was changed in 2002, to reflect, it was said, more accurately the communities from where the student body of Mary Valley College comes from.

And that's because students have been coming to the school in Imbil from all over the district for 120 years.

On July 19 the school will officially be 120 years old, having originally opened a provisional school on that date in 1897.

There have been dramatic events in the history of the school and the fact it has changed and adapted to suit them is a reflection of the people of the Mary Valley itself.

Imbil Station was established in July 1851 when tenders were called to operate two 16,000-acre blocks at Bluff Plains and Bunya Creek.

This was taken on by John David McTaggart who also operated other selections at Widgee.

When the two leases were taken on by Paul and Clement Lawless, the property was consolidated and became Imbil.

Imbil Station started with sheep but became a cattle run, before the lease was taken on in 1875 by Matthew and James Mellor and William and John Elworthy, who were among the first licensed timber cutters in the area.

However, gold was found in the Imbil area in two strikes: once in 1851 and the second in the same year as James Nash found gold in Gympie, 1867.

The second time a tent city sprung up almost overnight as people rushed to the fields to try to make their fortune.

As the gold petered out though, some people stayed on to become farmers and timber cutters at the hub of the area, Imbil station.

A small provisional school was opened in July 1897 with 18 students.

Difficulties in keeping the school open occurred from time to time due to the lack of numbers and some children were forced to attend schools at nearby Bollier or Brooloo (Bluff Plains), while others simply didn't go to school.

In December 1911 the school closed altogether after a report from the school inspector.

"Attendance is six. Parents are to blame in this matter and have little appreciation of the school privileges for their children. Consequently the school will be closed.”

A massive land sale took place on St Patrick's Day (March 17) 1914 when 300 buyers converged on the station to bid for townships allotments, drawn up after a new railway line was completed linking the new township directly with the Gympie goldfields.

Less than 12 months later, a letter was sent to the Under Secretary of Education requesting a new state school be built.

Written by Walter Sanderson on behalf of the residents of Imbil the letter stated:

"The estate has recently been cut up and all the town blocks sold and nearly all the surrounding ones. There are quite a number of people that we know of who have come, or are coming, to reside at Imbil and with our present and future prospects we are ageed that they fully warrant our claim.”

By October 1915 the school was up and running again with 33 students in the former provisional school and by June 1916, work had begun on the new school building.

The new head teacher, Mr George Pestorius enlisted in the army in 1916 and his wife took on the role as teacher, with an assistant teacher.

Head teacher at Imbil School, George Pestorius, was presented this scroll in 1917 after he returned home from the front in the First World War.
Head teacher at Imbil School, George Pestorius, was presented this scroll in 1917 after he returned home from the front in the First World War. Contributed

When Mr Pestorius returned at the end of the First World War, the whole school met him at Imbil Railway station to welcome him home.

In 1925 a wing was added to the Imbil State School to become additional classrooms, a Head Teacher's office and space underneath was used for the rural school section.

The rural school was established to serve the whole of the Mary Valley, much like the college does today, from Lagoon Pocket to Brooloo.

This building was actually the former boy's school building from One Mile State School.

It was dismantled and re-erected at Imbil after it was no longer required at the Gympie school.

Then, in the dying hours of Wednesday, July 20, 1937, the Imbil School and Rural school burned to the ground.

Imbil State School after it was destroyed by fire at around 10pm on Wednesday, July 20, 1937.
Imbil State School after it was destroyed by fire at around 10pm on Wednesday, July 20, 1937. Contributed

An article at the time in The Gympie Times said the loss of the belongings alone was estimated at more than £3000 and that the circumstances of the fire were "highly mysterious”.

Until the new building was completed in August 1938, classes were held in the memorial hall and in December of that year, the school was officially opened with a school picnic.

More additions were added to the school during the 1950s and in 1966 the school added a secondary department to its curriculum.

This, of course meant students were staying longer at the school, so more space was needed and in 1970 when nearby Brooloo school was closed down, the old Brooloo school building was moved to Imbil to become the secondary section and library.

In 1977, a preschool was opened at the Imbil State School and the school continued to grow to become the regional educational hub it is today.

Brooloo school became the library and secondary school at Imbil after its closure in 1970.
Brooloo school became the library and secondary school at Imbil after its closure in 1970. Contributed
Gympie Times

Topics:  g150 gympie 150th celebrations history history of schools imbil state school mary valley state college



Brisbane's arts and culture events centre stage

A CITY drenched in culture, Brisbane is again flaunting an arts and culture events calendar fit for a queen.

A whisky-lover's blueprint to Brisbane's best bars

Check out The Gresham for some old-school fine drops.

SCOTCH, Whiskey and Whisky; it all gets a bit confusing.

Your guide to the best Brisbane markets

Enjoy the beautiful offerings of one of Brisbane's many markets.

WHO doesn’t love a good market!?

8 things you didn't know you could do at North Straddie

Watch these guys while you enjoy the magical sunset of an evening.

NORTH Stradbroke Island is the perfect getaway.

Ain’t no mountain high enough

No Caption

Brisbane's dishing up the mountain-hiking goods!

Our six art gallery picks for a creative day out

Queensland's Gallery of Modern Art always has a fun, exciting and interesting exhibition on show for the whole family to enjoy.

YOU'D be mistaken in thinking Brisbane wasn't an arty city.

Six hideaway bars to escape winter chill

The Gresham's charm will win you over before your first sip.

THESE are the perfect places to hang this winter.

Controversial legal policy left for further debate

Under the controversial policy currently proposed, the mayor and CEO would have final say on all applications for council funding for legal action, including against third parties.

Motion passed to let matter of funding lie on the table.

Local Partners

Aly defends support for Richmond player banned for striking

The Project Host Waleed Aly defends character reference for suspended Richmond player Bachar Houli

No filter on talk in everyday Aussie workplaces

Hairdressers Nikki and Kathy star in Common Sense, the new TV series from the makers of Gogglebox.

Common Sense is like eavesdropping on water-cooler talk.

What's on the big screen this week

Jason Mantzoukas, Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler in a scene from The House.

WILL Ferrell and Amy Poehler play two naughty parents in The House.

Cleverman in a battle for survival

Hunter Page-Lochard stars in season two of the TV series Cleverman.

Will Koen become the hero everyone needs him to be in season two?

Game of Thrones: Crucial details you probably forgot

Emilia Clarke in a scene from season 7 of Game of Thrones.

There are some crucial story points to remember before season seven.

Pregnant Serena Williams nude on cover of Vanity Fair

"My heart dropped. Like literally it dropped,”

Housing pain as one in five Gladstone homes empty

DEPRESSING DATA: Census data has revealed Gladstone vacancies are on a rise.

Census data reveals number of unoccupied homes.

Agent judged among the world's best

Century 21 on Duporth principal Damien Said with team members Ryan Tomlinson, Jamie Smith, Kristie Cannon, Andrew Richardson and Sarah Beckman at the Maroochydore office.

Sunshine Coast real estate agent named in world-wide group's top 25

Island caretaker has weeks to live, abandons paradise

St Bees managing director Phil Webb, has been struck with illness and it has prompted the sale of the island.

His health has deteriorated in the past couple of months

Prime CBD site sold as laneway culture progresses

The Longs building Ruthven Street has been purchased by a group of investors to be renovated into a series of shops/eateries.  June 2017

How investors and council plan to transform the Toowoomba CBD

Gateway opens to $3b Coast mega estate

VISION: An artist's impression of the Palmview development 'Harmony' and its linear park.

New road provides link from the past to the future

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!