Official opening of the Bankfoot House Sesquicentenary Celebrations
Thank you, Mr Connell, for your warm welcome to the beautiful Glass House Mountains this morning, and thank you to Mr Brent Miller for the Welcome to Country.
I too acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we gather, and pay respect to their Elders past, present and emerging.
I am proud to join you for the 150th anniversary of the establishment of Bankfoot House, and the launch of Mr Ron Gillinder’s new book about this important piece of Queensland history.
Traffic permitting, one can drive from Brisbane to Gympie in about two hours today.
But things were very different when the original Bankfoot House was built in the summer of 1868.
Luckily, Bankfoot House provided a staging post, strategically positioned between Brisbane and the Gympie goldfields on an elevated site which was easy to spot from a distance.
As vividly described by Mr Gillinder in his book, when the Cobb & Co coach driver could see Mount Beerwah, he knew lunch wasn’t far away.
Stories like these offer a unique insight into the lives of fellow Queenslanders from a bygone era.
Indeed, Bankfoot House and the collection held here help us visualise what it was like in those days.
An ordinary Australian home with extraordinary pioneering beginnings, Bankfoot House was kept in continuity by three generations – Grigor, Burgess and Ferris – each with their own concern for recording and preserving their family history.
On behalf of all Queenslanders, I would like to thank Sunshine Coast Council and the Friends of Bankfoot House members, volunteers and supporters most sincerely for their efforts in conserving a truly fascinating precinct and keeping it accessible to the community.
And finally, ladies and gentlemen, please join me in congratulating Mr Gillinder on his outstanding piece of research.
It is now my pleasure, on behalf of the Friends of Bankfoot House Association, to officially launch Bankfoot House: 150 Years on Old Gympie Road.