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
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
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 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.
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
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
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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.