Main street of Maleny
|Population||3,441 (2011 census)|
|Elevation||425 m (1,394 ft)|
|LGA(s)||Sunshine Coast Region|
|State electorate(s)||Glass House|
Maleny is a small, scenic town 90 kilometres (56 mi) north of Brisbane on the Blackall Range overlooking the Sunshine Coast hinterland in Queensland, Australia. Nearby towns include Landsborough, Montville, Peachester, Palmwoods and Hunchy. Nearby places of geographical significance include the Glass House Mountains and Baroon Pocket Dam.
Maleny is situated approximately 450 metres (1,480 ft) above sea level, among the characteristic rolling green hills of the Sunshine Coast hinterland. Prior to European settlement, the area was covered in thick sub-tropical rainforest with huge hardwood trees. Timber-getters in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries opened up the area seeking valuable timber, which was prized locally and in Europe. Heavy logging led to the almost complete denuding of the rainforest clad hills in the district around Maleny. Pockets of forest remain in steeper terrain and in one large remnant patch (around 40 Hectares or 100 Acres) which now forms Mary Cairncross Reserve.
Located on the humid eastern slopes of the Blackall Range, Maleny is one of the wettest towns in Queensland away from the north tropical coast. The average annual rainfall is about 2,000 mm (79 in), however during unusually wet years 12 month rainfall totals of up to 4,000 mm (160 in) can be recorded, with monthly totals over 1,000 mm (39 in) and 24-hour totals up to 300 mm (12 in). Temperatures are mild and rarely get above 35 °C (95.0 °F) in summer or drop below 5 °C (41.0 °F) in winter.
|Climate data for Maleny|
|Record high °C (°F)||40.0
|Average high °C (°F)||26.7
|Average low °C (°F)||18.8
|Record low °C (°F)||13.6
|Average rainfall mm (inches)||288.3
|Average rainy days (≥ 0.2mm)||14.2||15.2||16.2||12.1||10.4||8.1||7.6||6.2||7.1||9.3||10.5||12.0||128.9|
|Source: Bureau of Meteorology|
The area around Maleny was originally populated by two aboriginal groups, the Nalbo people and the Dallambara group. The area was known for its bunya feasts which happened every third year when the giant bunya tree was in fruit.
The first European to document Maleny was the explorer Ludwig Leichhardt who describes the area in his travel diary in 1844. The first European settlement followed in the wake of the Gympie gold rush of 1867. A track linking Maleny to Landsborough was cut in 1880.
An official proclamation of Maleny as a town occurred in 1891. The Maleny Butter Factory began operation in 1904. Maleny was a timber town until the early 1920s and then was a centre of dairy production and fruit growing. Although a campaign to have a police station in the town was started in the 1920s it wasn't until 1952 that permission to convert a house into the current police station and residence was granted. Maleny Post Office opened by February 1906 (a receiving office had been open from 1889).
For one hundred years, the Maleny Community Centre has provided facilities to residents and visitors for a wide range of activities. Located in the middle of town, the original centre was established just after the turn of the 20th century, the result of a gift by one of its residents.
Maleny has a number of heritage-listed sites, including:
Maleny has replaced its timber-cutting and dairying past with tourism with a large influx of people who wanted an alternative lifestyle. As well as being on the Hinterland tourist drive, Maleny attracts day trippers from Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast who are attracted to the various stores, art galleries and specialty shops.
Development and protests
Maleny Community Centre is a fully community-owned centre, completed Stage 1 of a three Stage redevelopment in 2010. Fundraising is in progress for Stage 2 to rebuild the Maple Street frontage and renovate the 100yr old building into two storeys featuring an Queensland-style verandah over the footpath, giving much needed shelter on the main street. The Third Stage comprises the building of a new cultural centre on the MCC's second building at No:1 Bicentenary Lane.
Maleny's population growth, in the last decade, has brought an increase in urban development. Many local residents have resisted some of the development, the most notable being the establishment of a Woolworths store in the town. In July 2005, a rally attracted about 300 protestors objecting to the store. Many locals were opposed to the idea (79% of local residents opposed according to "Market Facts" survey of 20 July 2005). A number of motivations for the protest existed but of particular concern was that the supermarket was to be built over a significant platypus habitat and that local traders would be negatively affected. Badges and posters reading "I WON'T SHOP THERE" were seen in Maleny as part of the anti-Woolworths campaign. The campaign against the supermarket achieved international coverage. Despite protests and an offer to purchase the site for A$2 million (pledged by local residents) the supermarket opened on 3 April 2006. Although many residents refuse to shop in the supermarket, nonetheless the supermarket was judged as one of Woolworth's top 30 stores in 2008.
Maleny is home to a large number of cooperative enterprises. There are art galleries, health food and organic produce stores, cafes, the Maleny Credit Union, thriving business centre, rural settlements, alternative schools, alternative medical treatment, organic farming, intentional communities including the Crystal Waters Permaculture Village in nearby Conondale and the Fountainhead organic retreat and education centre (whose founder received a certificate from Senator Mark Furner for his work in helping those with depression and anxiety).
Baroon Pocket Dam
Baroon Pocket Dam constructed in 1989 is fed by the Obi Obi Creek, a significant tributary of the upper Mary River, which drains the basalt capped Maleny plateau. Water runoff statistics have been kept in this area since the 1940s showing that the average annual rainfall is 2,037 millimetres (80.2 in) and the runoff into Baroon Pocket Dam receives annually about 64,000ML. Since its construction the dam has become an important recreation area for the Sunshine Coast hinterland. The Baroon Pocket Dam holds about 61,000 megalitres of water and the treatment plant supplies about 150 megalitres of treated water to the Sunshine Coast daily. There is a sailing club, naval cadet unit, fishing club, secluded accommodation, and picnic facilities.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Maleny (Urban Centre/Locality)". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 12 February 2014.
- "MALENY TAMARIND ST". Climate statistics for Australian locations. Bureau of Meteorology. February 2014. Retrieved February 2014.
- Environmental Protection Agency (Queensland) (2002). Heritage Trails of the Queensland Outback. State of Queensland. pp. 130–131. ISBN 0-7345-1040-3.
- Premier Postal History. "Post Office List". Premier Postal Auctions. Retrieved 10 May 2014.
- "Maleny RSL War MemoriaL". Monument Australia. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
- Maleny Community Centre: History
- "Fairview (entry 602105)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 14 July 2013.
- "Three arrested as Maleny supermarket protests continue". ABC News Online (Australian Broadcasting Corporation). 24 July 2005. Retrieved 15 March 2011.
- "Community response to a proposed supermarket in Maleny: report of findings" (PDF). Market Facts Pty Ltd. 20 July 2005. Retrieved 25 July 2015.
- "Maleny Voice FAQs".
- "Protests continue as Woolies opens doors". ABC News Online (Australian Broadcasting Corporation). 3 April 2006. Retrieved 15 March 2011.
- "0 years on, protesters recall supermarket fight". Range News. 14 April 2014. Retrieved 25 July 2015.
- "Turns out Maleny does shop at Woolworths". Sunshine Coast Daily. 4 September 2008. Retrieved 25 July 2015.
- "Fountain Head retreat & education centre". Fountain Head Retreat. Retrieved 25 July 2015.
- "Maleny’s Other History". Hinterland Times (Sunshine Coast Hinterland Times.). 1 December 2010. Retrieved 15 March 2011.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Maleny, Queensland.|
- University of Queensland: Queensland Places: Maleny
- Maleny travel guide from Wikivoyage