Maryborough

Situated on the Mary River, the City of Maryborough is the commercial centre of the Fraser Coast. A city based on servicing the surrounding sugar, grazing and timber industries, Maryborough has a large number of beautiful buildings erected in the prosperous colonial era.

Maryborough is the self-styled Heritage City of Queensland and holds heritage markets each Thursday. Tourism plays a significant part in the economy of the city today, both as a tourist destination itself and as the gateway to Wide Bay, Fraser and Burnett coasts and Fraser Island.

Where is it?: Queensland: Burnett/Fraser Coast. Maryborough is 264 km north of Brisbane via the Bruce Highway on the Mary river. Maryborough is 111 km south of Bundaberg, 35 km south of Hervey Bay and 88 km north of Gympie.

Events: July: Mary Poppins Festival

Things to see and do

The old wharf area has been re-established as riverside parklands, and is perfect for a picnic or riverside walk. Within short walking distance are the pick of Maryborough's historic buildings; these include the City Hall (1908), Maryborough Post Office (1869), Customs House (1859), Customs House Hotel (1870), Court House (1875-77), former Bank of NSW, now Maryborough Family Heritage Institute Building (1878)' Bond Store Museum.

Queens Park

Queens Park can make claims to being one of the most delightful city parks in Queensland. The huge banyan tree, the elegant band rotunda, the city fernery, the little statue and the views over the river all make it an ideal place to relax. The band rotunda is a very early example of prefabrication. It was actually built in Glasgow and shipped out in 1890. Near the rotunda are some 13-cm gauge railway tracks. The model engineers bring their trains to these tracks on the last Sunday of each month.

Mary Poppins

Maryborough is the birthplace of PL Travers (real name Helen Lyndon Goff), author of the Mary Poppins books. The the city has honoured the author and character with a bronze statue of Mary Poppins in the city centre near Queens Park. A perfect mementos of one's visit to Maryborough is a photograph taken with Mary, or better still, to visit the city in July and attend the Mary Poppins Festival where the characters from the books are recreated and attend Heritage Market day.

Natural features: Mary River; Wide Bay; Mount Bauple National Park; Fairlie's Knob National Park; Poona National Park; Woodgate National Park

Heritage features: Baddow House (1883); Teamsters Paddock; Bush Inn (now the Royal Hotel); Brennan & Geraghty's Store (1871); St Paul's Anglican Church and Tower (1879, 1887); City Hall (1908); Post Office (1869); Customs House (1901); Customs House Hotel (1870); Court House and Lands Office (1875-77); Maryborough Family Heritage Institute Building (1878); Bond Store Museum; Maryborough Technical College Group (from 1983); Lambert Hyne residence (1889); Band Rotunda, Queens Park (1890).


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History

The town and river were named in 1847 after Lady Mary Lennox (1790–1847) the beloved wife of Sir Charles Augustus Fitzroy, then Governor of the colony of New South Wales. Lady Mary was killed in a coach accident very soon after, devastating Sir Charles. Wharves were established at Maryborough in 1847-1848 to provide transport for wool from sheep stations on the Burnett River. The town was initially located further south on the Mary River, but moved to its present location in 1852. It was declared a port in 1859. The Mary River has such a wide mouth that at one stage Maryborough was nominated as possible capital city status before Brisbane.

On 7 January 1905 Maryborough achieved City status, and a Town Hall was built on the corner of Kent and Adelaide Streets and became the administrative centre of the City. On 17 February 1917, as part of a restructuring of local government in the Wide Bay-Burnett area, the Shire of Granville was abolished and split between the Shire of Tiaro and City of Maryborough.

For many years, the Walkers shipbuilding yard was a major employer in the town. The main industrial company in the city today is EDI Rail, formerly Walkers Limited, a heavy engineering business which has built much of the rolling stock and locomotives for Queensland Rail and in past years was involved in shipbuilding.

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