Lappa, Queensland

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The Savannahlander at Lappa Junction, April 2006
Lappa is located in Queensland
Coordinates17°22′S 144°53′E / 17.367°S 144.883°E / -17.367; 144.883Coordinates: 17°22′S 144°53′E / 17.367°S 144.883°E / -17.367; 144.883
LGA(s)Shire of Mareeba
State electorate(s)Cook
Federal Division(s)Kennedy

Lappa is a former mining town on the western side of the Atherton Tablelands in Petford in the Shire of Mareeba in Far North Queensland, Australia.[1][2]


Lappa is on the Burke Developmental Road which runs roughly east to west to the immediate north of the town. To the south of the town is the Lappa railway station which is on the Savannahlander route. Heading south is the road to Mount Garnet.[3] The Lappa-Mount Garnet Road which was formerly a train line (which closed in 1961), which was built following Abdul Wade's camel track and is today a popular 4 wheel drive and mountain biking trail.[4]


Chillagoe Railway and Mining Co. railway map

Silver was discovered in the area in 1891 by the Halpin Brothers.[5]

The town has had several name changes in its relatively short existence. Originally named Lappa Lappa by Queensland Railways after the nearby silver, lead and zinc mines this name is the Aboriginal name for a large rock bluff there. One of the Lappa's was dropped over the years but then Lappa Junction became the local name and survived until 1943 it was shortened to Lappa once more.[2]

The Loch Lomond State School opened on 25 July 1900 but was subsequently renamed Lappa Lappa State School. The school closed on 1 February 1933.[6]

The Chillagoe branch railway line was a private railway built for the Chillagoe Railway and Mining Company. Starting at Mareeba, the line reached Lappa Junction on 1 October 1900 and was subsequently extended to Mungana.[7] It was taken over the Queensland Government in 1919.[8]

In 1904, the population was 200-300 men.[9]

Heritage buildings[edit]

Lappa Junction railway station, circa 1900

Three main buildings remain at Lappa. The oldest is the Lappa Railway Station built by William Hastie and opened at Lappa in November 1900.

The Espanol Hotel was built by Mr Barbera in 1901. The hotel license was surrendered in December 1966. The old kitchen remains behind the hotel. The Espanol Hotel today is a BYO pub and museum. The current "publican" of the Espanol Hotel at Lappa is a colourful character who goes by the name of "The Yappa from Lappa" He has worn this title for 25 years and has collected the local history that is on display in the pub turned museum.[10] The Espanol Hotel is listed on the Mareeba Shire's local heritage register.[11]

The third building is the Almaden Church which was built in 1900 at Almaden and moved to Lappa in the early 1940s. It was built onto and serves as the main house.


  1. ^ "Lappa". The Historical Society of Mareeba. Retrieved 10 September 2015.
  2. ^ a b "Lappa railway station (entry 18995)". Queensland Place Names. Queensland Government. Retrieved 10 September 2015.
  3. ^ "Queensland Globe". State of Queensland. Retrieved 10 September 2015.
  4. ^ "Mountain Bike Trail: Lappa Junction". Tablelands integrated Mountain Bike Alliance. Retrieved 10 September 2015.
  5. ^ "New Silver Field". The Telegraph. Brisbane. 30 January 1891. p. 4. Retrieved 11 September 2015 – via National Library of Australia.
  6. ^ "Item ID15227, Loch Lomond No.903 (subsequently Lappa Lappa) State School". Queensland State Archives.
  7. ^ "QUEENSLAND NEWS". The Morning Bulletin. Rockhampton, Qld. 4 October 1900. p. 5. Retrieved 11 September 2015 – via National Library of Australia.
  8. ^ "Mareeba – from half-way place to hub of the Cairns hinterland" (PDF). Queensland Rail – a Proud Heritage. Queensland Rail. Retrieved 10 September 2015.
  9. ^ "GREAT BOULDER AND PERSEVERANCE SHARES". The Daily Telegraph. Launceston, Tas. 27 June 1904. p. 8. Retrieved 11 September 2015 – via National Library of Australia.
  10. ^ Gorman, Claire; Player, Xavier (4 May 2010). "The Yappa from Lappa". ABC Far North Queensland. Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
  11. ^ "Schedule 7 Local Heritage Places" (PDF). Shire of Mareeba. Retrieved 10 September 2015.

External links[edit]

Media related to Lappa, Queensland at Wikimedia Commons