Gin Gin, Queensland
Bruce Highway passing through Gin Gin
Gin Gin is a small rural town located on the Bruce Highway in central Queensland, Australia, approximately 51 km west of Bundaberg and 370 km north-west of Brisbane, the state capital. The town owes its existence to its strategic location about halfway between Brisbane and Rockhampton. It is often used as a stop-over point for drivers travelling between these two centres. At the 2006 census, Gin Gin had a population of 892.
The Gin Gin district was originally settled in 1847 when Gregory Blaxland and William Forster moved into the area with sheep and cattle. The site where the town now stands was once part of the sprawling Gin Gin Station owned by Sir Thomas McIlwraith, who was Premier of Queensland three times between 1879 and 1893.
Gin Gin, like Bundaberg, is heavily dependent on the sugar industry, with sugarcane plantations dotted throughout the area. The Gin Gin Sugar Mill is situated at the nearby locality of Wallaville. An extensive system of sugar cane tramways service the area. Cattle production also features prominently. In recent years small cropping has taken off across farms in the district, with varied success.
The Gin Gin district is nicknamed Wild Scotsman Country due to the capture of one of Queensland's few bushrangers, James Alpin McPherson, in the area on 30 March 1866. McPherson, who went by the same nickname, was captured at Monduran Station, 13 km north of town. The Wild Scotsman Festival is held in Gin Gin on the third week of March each year to commemorate this event.
Gin Gin has a number of heritage-listed sites, including:
- Boolboonda Tunnel Road: Boolboonda State Primary School (former)
- Mulgrave Street: Gin Gin Railway Station and Complex
- Tunnel Road: Boolboonda Tunnel
Gin Gin State School opened in 1882 with only one teacher in one building. Now it caters for around 450 students, mainly of rural background. As well as the students from Gin Gin itself, many students travel, mainly by bus, from surrounding properties and townships like Wallaville, Bullyard, Tirroan, McIlwraith, Maroondan and Mount Perry.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Gin Gin (L) (Urban Centre/Locality)". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 13 May 2011.
- The Gin Gin Central Mill Tramway Armstrong, J. Australian Railway Historical Society Bulletin, March, 1975 pp53-69
- "Place Name Details" (PHP). Natural Resources and Mines (Queensland). 2008. Retrieved 2013-08-27.
- "Boolboonda State Primary School (former) (entry 16993)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 2013-07-07.
- "Gin Gin Railway Station and Complex (entry 16412)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 2013-07-07.
- "Boolboonda Railway Tunnel (entry 16279)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 2013-07-07.
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