Esk, Queensland

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Esk Main Street.JPG
Main street of Esk, the Brisbane Valley Highway
Esk is located in Queensland
Coordinates27°14′22″S 152°25′11″E / 27.2394°S 152.4197°E / -27.2394; 152.4197Coordinates: 27°14′22″S 152°25′11″E / 27.2394°S 152.4197°E / -27.2394; 152.4197
Population1,698 (2016 census)[1]
 • Density28.49/km2 (73.79/sq mi)
Area59.6 km2 (23.0 sq mi)
Time zoneAEST (UTC+10:00)
LGA(s)Somerset Region
State electorate(s)Nanango
Federal Division(s)Blair
Localities around Esk:
Biarra Coal Creek Murrumba
Redbank Creek Esk Glen Esk
Mount Hallen Mount Hallen Moombra

Esk is a town and locality in the Somerset Region in South East Queensland, Australia.[2][3] In the 2016 census, Esk had a population of 1,698 people.[1]


Esk Post Office, 2010
Aerial view of Esk with flooded Wivenhoe Dam in the background, photographed a week after the devastating floods of January 2011

Esk is approximately 64 kilometres (40 mi) northwest of Ipswich on the Brisbane Valley Highway. It was named after the River Esk in Scotland and England. It is the administrative centre of the Somerset Region.

The town of Esk is contained in the Queensland electoral district of Nanango.


Jagara (also known as Jagera, Yagara, Yugarabul, Yuggera and Yuggerabul) is one of the Aboriginal languages of South-East Queensland.[4] There is some uncertainty over the status of Jagara as a language, dialect or perhaps a group or clan within the local government boundaries of Ipswich City Council, Lockyer Regional Council and the Somerset Regional Council.[5]

Esk formed part of the southern border of the Garumga clan of the Dalla tribe.

The land around Esk was first explored by Captain Patrick Logan in 1830. The town was established to service the short-lived copper mines of Eskdale and Cressbrook Creek.[6] Settlers moved into the region during the 1840s.

Mount Esk Post Office opened on 1 February 1874 (a receiving office had been open from 1873) and was renamed Esk by February 1881.[7]

Mount Esk State School was opened on 1 November 1875 and was renamed Esk State School in 1887.[8][9]

In 1886, the Brisbane Valley railway line reached Esk from Lowood.[6] Several sawmills were built and in 1904 a butter factory opened. The timber industry declined in the 1920s.

St Agnes' Anglican Church was dedicated on Monday 28 October 1889 by Bishop William Webber.[10][11]

In July 1941, a Lutheran church was opened.[12]

Dairying slowed from the 1960s onwards, which has eventually led to the decline of the town's importance as a major rural centre.[6]

At the 2006 census, Esk had a population of 1,166.[13]

The Esk Library opened in 2009.[14]

View across the grass to Cressbrook Homestead, circa 1887

The Caboonbah Homestead was destroyed by fire on 10 May 2009.[15]

During the 2010–11 Queensland floods, the centre of Esk was flooded when Redbank Creek burst its banks for the first time in recorded history.[16]

In the 2011 census, Esk had a population of 1,755 people.[17]

Heritage listings[edit]

Esk has a number of heritage-listed sites, including:

War memorial and memorial park[edit]

War Memorial and War Memorial Park, 2010
War memorial

On 30 November 1920, Dr Graham Butler laid the foundation stone of the Esk War Memorial.[21] The finished memorial was unveiled by General Lachlan Chisholm Wilson on 27 August 1921.[22] The memorial records the names of 462 Shire residents who enlisted during the First World War. It also contains bronze honour rolls bearing the names of 83 local men who died during the war. Four commemorative plaques have subsequently been added to the structure. The war memorial stands in Esk Memorial Park, which also contains a memorial to Captain Logan, who was murdered while exploring the Brisbane Valley in 1830.[23][24]


The small town serves as a centre for a rich farming area.


Esk State School is a government primary (Prep-6) school for boys and girls at 49 East Street (27°14′51″S 152°25′35″E / 27.2475°S 152.4263°E / -27.2475; 152.4263 (Esk State School)).[25][26] In 2017, the school had an enrolment of 172 students with 15 teachers (13 full-time equivalent) and 9 non-teaching staff (6 full-time equivalent).[27]

As there is no high school in Esk, students from the Esk State School typically attend Toogoolawah State High School in Toogoolawah, Lockyer District High School in Gatton or Lowood State High School in Lowood or private schools in and around Ipswich.[28]


The Somerset Regional Council operates a public library at 19 Heap Street.[29] Esk township is also serviced by a local Hospital and racecourse and plans are underway for a retirement village.

The Esk branch of the Queensland Country Women's Association meets at 5 Heap Street.[30]


Grand Hotel, Esk

Nearby attractions include Lake Somerset and Lake Wivenhoe, both lakes created by dams which provide a number of camping areas with facilities and opportunities for water-based recreational activities including boating, canoeing, fishing and skiing and Ravensbourne and Crows Nest National Parks.

The historic Bellevue Homestead is located in the area. Also close by are the peaks Glen Rock and Mount Esk.


Esk is serviced by a Christian radio station on FM 87.6 MHz.

Notable people from Esk[edit]


  1. ^ a b Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Esk (SSC)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 20 October 2018. Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ "Esk (town) (entry 44224)". Queensland Place Names. Queensland Government. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
  3. ^ "Esk (locality) (entry 45517)". Queensland Place Names. Queensland Government. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
  4. ^ "Aboriginal languages of the Greater Brisbane Area | State Library Of Queensland". Retrieved 7 May 2020.
  5. ^ CC-BY-icon-80x15.png This Wikipedia article incorporates CC-BY-4.0 licensed text from: "Jagara". Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages map. State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 23 January 2020.
  6. ^ a b c Environmental Protection Agency (Queensland) (2000). Heritage Trails of the Great South East. State of Queensland. p. 47. ISBN 0-7345-1008-X.
  7. ^ Phoenix Auctions History. "Post Office List". Phoenix Auctions. Retrieved 21 February 2021.
  8. ^ "Opening and closing dates of Queensland Schools". Queensland Government. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
  9. ^ "Agency ID 5200, Esk State School". Queensland State Archives. Retrieved 26 May 2014.
  10. ^ "Year Book" (PDF). Anglican Archdiocese of Brisbane. 2019. p. 134. Archived (PDF) from the original on 15 September 2020. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  11. ^ "Esk Anglican Church". The Telegraph (5, 322). Queensland, Australia. 2 November 1889. p. 5. Retrieved 22 September 2020 – via National Library of Australia.
  12. ^ "LUTHERAN CHURCH". The Queensland Times. Ipswich, Queensland: National Library of Australia. 22 July 1941. p. 2 Edition: DAILY. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  13. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Esk (Urban Centre/Locality)". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 11 May 2011.
  14. ^ "Public Libraries Statistical Bulletin 2016-17" (PDF). Public Libraries Connect. State Library of Queensland. November 2017. p. 15. Archived (PDF) from the original on 30 January 2018. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
  15. ^ Earley, David (11 May 2009). "Fire destroys Caboonbah Homestead". Archived from the original on 14 May 2009. Retrieved 17 September 2009.
  16. ^ Korner, Andrew (11 January 2011). "Floods hit Esk". The Queensland Times. Archived from the original on 27 May 2014. Retrieved 26 May 2014.
  17. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Esk (SSC)". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 25 May 2014. Edit this at Wikidata
  18. ^ "Esk War Memorial and Esk Memorial Park (entry 600494)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 12 July 2013.
  19. ^ "St Agnes Rectory and Church (entry 600493)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 12 July 2013.
  20. ^ "St Andrews Presbyterian Church (entry 602408)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 12 July 2013.
  21. ^ "ESK SOLDIERS' MEMORIAL". The Brisbane Courier. Qld.: National Library of Australia. 2 December 1920. p. 7. Retrieved 26 May 2014.
  22. ^ "ESK SHIRE MEMORIAL". The Brisbane Courier. Qld.: National Library of Australia. 1 September 1921. p. 10. Retrieved 26 May 2014.
  23. ^ "Esk War Memorial and Esk Memorial Park (listing QLD600494)". Australia Heritage Places Inventory. Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities. Retrieved 18 September 2009.
  24. ^ "Esk War Memorial". Monument Australia. Archived from the original on 27 May 2014. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
  25. ^ "State and non-state school details". Queensland Government. 9 July 2018. Archived from the original on 21 November 2018. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  26. ^ "Esk State School". Archived from the original on 18 January 2019. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  27. ^ "ACARA School Profile 2017". Archived from the original on 22 November 2018. Retrieved 22 November 2018.
  28. ^ "Annual Report 2012" (PDF). Esk State School. Archived (PDF) from the original on 26 May 2014. Retrieved 26 May 2014.
  29. ^ "Branches". Somerset Regional Council. Archived from the original on 30 January 2018. Retrieved 31 January 2018.
  30. ^ "Branch Locations". Queensland Country Women's Association. Archived from the original on 26 December 2018. Retrieved 26 December 2018.

External links[edit]

Media related to Esk, Queensland at Wikimedia Commons