Machans Beach, Queensland

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Machans Beach
CairnsQueensland
Cairns001.jpg
Esplanade 2005
Machans Beach is located in Queensland
Machans Beach
Machans Beach
Coordinates16°51′20″S 145°44′52″E / 16.8555°S 145.7477°E / -16.8555; 145.7477Coordinates: 16°51′20″S 145°44′52″E / 16.8555°S 145.7477°E / -16.8555; 145.7477
Population1,051 (2016 census)[1]
 • Density140.1/km2 (362.9/sq mi)
Established1885
Postcode(s)4878
Area7.5 km2 (2.9 sq mi)
LGA(s)Cairns Region
State electorate(s)Barron River
Federal Division(s)Leichhardt
Suburbs around Machans Beach:
Holloways Beach Coral Sea. Coral Sea
Barron Machans Beach Coral Sea
Stratford Aeroglen Aeroglen

Machans Beach is a beach and coastal suburb of Cairns in the Cairns Region, Queensland, Australia. [2][3] In the 2016 census, Machans Beach had a population of 1,051 people.[1]

Geography[edit]

Gundy Anton Bridge from Machans Beach over Redden Creek to Redden Island, 2018

The Barron River and Barr Creek are respectively the southern and northern boundaries of the suburb, while the Coral Sea and Captain Cook Highway form the eastern and western boundaries.[4]

Looking upstream on Redden Creek (offshoot of the Barron River), 2018

The land is flat and just above sea level. The residential development is in the east of the suburb near the coast. The north-eastern coastline is a rocky sea wall, but the south-eastern coastline has a sand beach with the two sections separated by Redden Creek, which flows from the Barron River as a second mouth on the Coral Sea, creating an area known as Redden Island.[4] The Gundy Anton Bridge crosses Redden Creek to connect the mainland part of Machans Beach with Redden Island.[5]

Redden Island is an important habit and feeding ground for shorebirds with over 100 species of bird being recorded there, including some rare and endangered species such as the eastern curlew, the great knot, the curlew sandpiper, the bar-tailed godwit, the red knot, and the lesser sand plover. These migratory shorebirds travel up to 25,000 km each year on their migration between Australian and Asia, some travelling as far north as Siberia and Japan.[6]

The majority of the suburb is still used as freehold farming land with sugarcane the predominant crop.[4]

History[edit]

Looking south along the esplanade, 2018

The Yirrganydji people traditionally inhabited the area. They used dugouts (single outrigger canoes) for fishing. From the canoes they used spears to catch smaller fish and harpoons to catch large sea creatures such as dugong and turtle. In sheltered creeks, the Yirrganydji people established fish traps, fences of lawyer vine and bushes spread across the creek held in position in the creek by a series of stakes. The women would drive the fish into the traps by beating on the water. Some men pulled on the sides of the fish trap to hold it tight while other men speared the fish driven into the trap. According to traditional lore, if a sea snake was caught, it had to be released or else there would be huge storms.[7]

Older homes, 2018

The area was first surveyed in 1885, but was not permanently settled until the 1920s. It is named after Richard Machan who was among the first permanent white settlers in the area, having purchased land in the 1920s. Using a Model T Ford, Richard Machan provided transportation services to the area. He built a jetty to encourage tourist boats from Cairns to call at nearby Barron Beach.[8][9]

New homes on Redden Island, 2018

Machans Beach State School opened on 4 February 1952.[10]

In 1961, Gundy Anton donated part of his land for use in constructing a bridge across Redden Creek to Redden Island. In 2006, the council approved a local community proposal that the bridge (then known as the Redden Island Bridge) be renamed the Gundy Anton Bridge to reflect both the donation of the land and the considerable community service performed by Anton over the years.[5]

Machans Beach was gazetted as a suburb in 2002, having previously been a locality.[2]

At the 2011 census the suburb recorded a population of 941.[11]

Looking south along the sea wall, 2018

The coastline and waterways in the area are unstable due to storm surge and flooding, which have changed the course of the Barron River over the years. From April 2014 to August 2015, the crumbling seawall along the suburb's northern coastline was rebuilt combined with the construction of a causeway further out to sea to provide greater protection for the growing number of residences along the coastal area following a number of severe storms. The project cost the Cairns Regional Council $16.8M.[12][13][14][15] The drawback of the seawall is that it prevents a sandy beach from forming.[16]

Relationship to airport[edit]

Machans Beach is located about 1–2 km north of the Cairns International Airport. Plans to extend the airport in 2011 raised a number of objections from Machans Beach residents in relation to environmental concerns and noise concerns.[17]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Machans Beach (SSC)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 28 April 2018. Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ a b "Machans Beach - suburb in Cairns Region (entry 48738)". Queensland Place Names. Queensland Government. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  3. ^ "Machans Beach - beach in Cairns Region (entry 41948)". Queensland Place Names. Queensland Government. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  4. ^ a b c "Queensland Globe". State of Queensland. Retrieved 28 April 2018.
  5. ^ a b "Meeting: Works & Services Committee" (PDF). Cairns City Council. 16 May 2006. pp. 5–7. Retrieved 7 May 2018.
  6. ^ Information board "Redden Island Shorebird Habitat". Mouth of the Barron River, Redden Island, Machans Beach: Cairns Regional Council.
  7. ^ Information board "Yirrganydji Sea Country". Northern end of O'Shea Esplanade, Machans Beach: Cairns Regional Council.
  8. ^ "History". Machans Beach Community Association. Archived from the original on 21 December 2003. Retrieved 13 March 2014. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  9. ^ "Machans Beach". Queensland Places. Centre for the Government of Queensland, University of Queensland. Archived from the original on 2 March 2014. Retrieved 13 March 2014. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  10. ^ "Opening and closing dates of Queensland Schools". Queensland Government. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  11. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Machans Beach (State Suburb)". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 29 December 2014. Edit this at Wikidata
  12. ^ Parsons, Liam (30 January 2014). "Machans seawall upgrade ordered after Cairns Regional Council awards $10 million contract". The Cairns Post. Retrieved 29 April 2018.
  13. ^ Mitchell, Andrew (5 November 2014). "Constructing Machans Beach Seawall". Queensland Coast. Archived from the original on 20 March 2018. Retrieved 29 April 2018. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  14. ^ "Machans Beach seawall reconstruction". Cairns Regional Council. 28 April 2017. Archived from the original on 28 April 2018. Retrieved 29 April 2018. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  15. ^ Mitchell, Andrew (16 January 2015). "Finishing off the Machans Beach Seawall". Queensland Coast. Archived from the original on 20 March 2018. Retrieved 29 April 2018. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  16. ^ "Common misconceptions about beaches" (PDF). Queensland Government. July 1999. Archived (PDF) from the original on 10 March 2018. Retrieved 29 April 2018. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  17. ^ "Summary of concerns regarding the Cairns Airport land use plan" (PDF). Machans Beach Community Association. Archived from the original (PDF) on 13 March 2014. Retrieved 13 March 2014. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)

External links[edit]