Hughenden Community Afternoon Tea Hosted by the Queensland Country Women’s Association
It is with great pleasure that Kaye and I return to the delightful town of Hughenden, this time, as part of our annual Regional Government House program.
I at once acknowledge the traditional owners of the lands around Hughenden and extend respectful greetings to Elders and emerging leaders.
While your region has been made world-famous by the discovery of “Hughie”, its people remain reassuringly down-to-earth and resourceful.
In February, when I came here following the destructive flooding event, I visited local businesses and toured your two schools. At the time I was struck by the warmth and generosity shown to me by the people I met, despite the hardship and heartbreak of the situation being confronted – particularly the appalling stock losses.
These qualities of pluck and initiative impress me each time I come to Queensland’s vast Outback, and are reflected in the admirable way your town continues to recover from the flood disaster.
Earlier today I received a briefing from Mayor McNamara and Councillors, and Kaye and I were interested to learn more about the exciting projects planned for your region.
We also met with students and teachers from Hughenden State School and St Francis Catholic School. It is true to say that your young people show great enthusiasm and pride for both their schools and their region. Teachers and staff are to be praised for their commitment to providing a quality education for these children, who represent the future of Hughenden and our State.
This afternoon we are thrilled that the catering is courtesy of the Queensland Country Women’s Association – an organisation close to Kaye’s heart, given her role as Patron.
We not only look forward to enjoying the QCWA’s renowned refreshments, but are also reminded of how much the Association works to support our rural communities.
In speaking to the people here, I am confident that Hughenden will continue to thrive, because you embody the characteristics that build strong communities.
Indeed, as we visit other localities in the North West, from our base in Mount Isa, Kaye and I are touched by the firm loyalty you demonstrate for your towns.
With Queensland’s remote and regional areas being so important to both our State’s unique personality and its economic vitality, we place great value on being able to spend more time with you, at occasions such as this. Thank you.