, Dimbulah is a town and locality in Far North Queensland, Australia, 114 kilometres from Cairns by road, on the Atherton Tableland. It is within the local government area of Shire of Mareeba. At the 2011 census, Dimbulah had a population of 1,414; the former mining town of Wolfram is located in the north-west of the locality. There are historical ruins of early mining there as well as a present-day open cut mine; the town was established in 1876 to service the Tyrconnell Gold Mine, one of the richest mines on the Hodgkinson Gold Fields. The name "Dimbulah" is thought to have come from the local Indigenous Australian word for "long waterhole", referring to the Walsh River that runs nearby the town. Dimboola Post Office opened by 1900 and was renamed Dimbulah in 1904; the Dimbulah Public Library opened in 1995 with a minor refurbishment in 2013. The area around Dimbulah was home to the Djankun and Kuku Djungan tribe. During the 1920s the Queensland government forcibly removed most of their children, forcing the tribe to scatter.
In the early 1900s the area received an influx of Italian migrants and in 1928 tobacco was introduced, becoming the area's major industry soon after. At its peak, there were 800 growers in the area, producing over 8,000 tonnes of tobacco a year.'The Way Back In' is an Australian heritage project that documents a small selection of Australian heritage within the Italian communities in Dimbulah and Cairns. Tobacco remained the dominant crop until recent years. Recent attempts at alternative crops such as tea trees, sugar cane, lemons, avocados, papayas, soya beans, lychees and cash crops have met with mixed success. Farming is a significant employment option in Dimbulah and many travelers, including backpackers, are employed as short-term farm labourers during the busy mango harvest from November to January. Holders of a working holiday visa may be eligible for an extension to their visa after a period of work on farms in the area. Accommodation is available at the Junction Hotel. If employed on a farm, accommodation is available in small'dongas' or barracks.
Public transport from Cairns is possible, although infrequent, on Trans North's bus service which stops at Mareeba, 45 kilometres from Dimbulah. The Savannahlander tourist train does not operate year-round. Important local events include the annual Lion's Festival and the Great Wheelbarrow Race both held annually in May. On 27 September 2014, the Dimbulah P-10 State School celebrated its centenary. Local residents enjoy a tropical climate with dry, mild winters. There are many sporting clubs including swimming, horse & pony, lawn bowls, Rhee Taekwon-Do, soccer/football. Services include Police station, Queensland Health clinic, ADSL internet, 3G mobile service. In 2013, the town's retail facilities include a Bendigo Community Bank with 24-hour ATM, Australia Post office, Mareeba Discount Chemist, Funky Mango Cafe, Canzian's Restaurant, Junction Hotel, Abundant Life opp shop, Sunshine Bakery, two salons, TGT hardware store, Foodworks grocery store, One Stop convenience store and two petrol stations.
Community groups include the Dimbulah Community Centre, St Anthony's Catholic church, Men's Shed, Lions Club, QCWA, Chamber of Commerce, museum association, several other faith-based groups. The Mareeba Shire operates a public library at Shire Hall at the corner of Raleigh Street and Burke Development Road; the Dimbulah branch of the Queensland Country Women's Association meets at the QCWA Hall at 22 Brickley Street. Chris Sheppard, former NRL player Dimbulah has a number of sites listed on the Queensland Heritage Register including: Main Street, Wolfram: La Société Française des Métaux Rares treatment plant Wolfram Road, Wolfram: Thermo Electric Ore Reduction Corporation Mill Dimbulah Limited Hours Child Care, Age range 15 months - 5 years Dimbulah Kindergarten, Age range 3–5 years Dimbulah P-10 State School, Age range: 4–16 years St Anthony's Parish School Age range: 4-12 University of Queensland: Queensland Places: Dimbulah Town map of Dimbulah, 1984
Babinda is a small town and locality in the Cairns Region, Australia. It is located 60 kilometres south of Cairns; the town is noted for its proximity to Queensland's two highest mountains Mount Bartle Frere and Mount Bellenden Ker. Babinda and Tully annually compete for an award for Australia's wettest town. Babinda is the winner, recording an annual average rainfall of over 4279.4 millimetres each year. Babinda takes its name from the local Indigenous Australian language for mountain. Other sources, claim it is a Yidinji word for water referring to the high rainfall of the area. Babinda State School opened on 4 November 1914. Babinda Post Office opened by 1915; the Babinda War Memorial was unveiled by the chairman of the Cairns Shire Council Seymour Warner on 25 April 1927. The Babinda Public Library building opened in 1955. In March 2006, Babinda was struck by Cyclone Larry. At the 2011 census the town recorded a population of 1,068. Babinda has a number of heritage-listed sites, including: 65-85 Munro Street: Babinda Hotel 109 Munro Street: Babinda Air Raid Shelter The 2006 Census by the Australian Bureau of Statistics counted 1,167 persons in Babinda on census night.
Of these, 49.7% were male and 50.3% were female. The majority of residents are of Australian birth, with other common census responses being Italy and New Zealand; the age distribution of Babinda residents is skewed higher than the greater Australian population. 70.1% of residents were over 25 years in 2006, compared to the Australian average of 66.5%. The local newspapers are The Cairns Post. There are many different community events in Babinda; the annual Harvest Festival is celebrated in October and features some unusual events including the Sugar Bowl competition, the Gumboot Toss and the Umbrella Toss. The festival did not occur in 2006 due to Cyclone Larry. Babinda is served on the corner of Pollard and the Boulders Road. St Rita's School, on Church Street, Babinda Kindergarten on Church Street and Babinda Early Learning on Pollard Road; the Cairns Regional Council operates a public library in Babinda at 24 Munro Street. The Babinda branch of the Queensland Country Women's Association meets at the QCWA Hall in School Road.
The Boulders and Devil's Pool are popular tourist attractions. A picnic area is located nearby, beside Babinda Creek. Babinda is situated on the Bruce Highway; the town has a railway station for access to the long-distance train services only the Spirit of Queensland for which an advance booking must be made for the train to stop in Babinda. Babinda has a tropical rainforest climate with persistently wet weather, it is well known and recognised as the wettest town in Australia, with an annual average rainfall of 4279.4 mm. Monthly totals over 1000 mm are not uncommon, sometimes between January and April, whole months will go by without a single sunny day; the wet season lasts from December to May. During the wet season, heavy monsoonal downpours occur daily and even heavier rain from tropical lows or cyclones occurs. Rainfall still totals well over 100mm a month during the dry season. Thunderstorms with dangerous lightning and damaging winds can be a threat from October to December. Suburbs of Cairns Media related to Babinda, Queensland at Wikimedia Commons University of Queensland: Queensland Places: Babinda Watch historical footage of Babinda and Far North Queensland from the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia's collection.
Cairns Regional Council "Babinda". The Age. Melbourne, Australia. 8 February 2004. Retrieved 30 March 2011
Tully is a town and locality in the Cassowary Coast Region, Australia. It is adjacent to the Bruce Highway 140 kilometres south of Cairns by road and 210 kilometres north of Townsville. In the 2016 census, Tully had a population of 2,390 people; the Tully River was named after Surveyor-General William Alcock Tully in the 1870s. The town of Tully was named after the river when it was surveyed off when the sugar mill was erected in 1924. A settlement known as Banyan had grown up on the other side of Banyan Creek during the previous decade. Tully is one of the larger towns of the Cassowary Coast Region; the economic base of the region is agriculture. The sugar cane grown at the many farms in the district is processed locally at the Tully Sugar Mill to give raw sugar, shipped elsewhere for refinement; the Tully River area was settled once Cardwell, to the south, was established. The river was renamed in 1872 in honour of William Alcock Tully under-secretary for public lands and chief commissioner of crown lands in Queensland.
The first settlers were the nephews of James Tyson. It was not until the government constructed a sugar mill in 1925. Tully was within the Cardwell Division, which became the Shire of Cardwell in 1903; the original headquarters for the division/shire were in older town of Cardwell. In 1929, the decision was taken to relocate the shire council's headquarters to the newer but more populous town of Tully; the first council meeting held in Tully was on 27 June 1929. A new shire chambers was built in 1930 on the south-east corner of Morris Streets. At the 2011 census, Tully had a population of 2,436. Tully remained the administrative centre for the Shire of Cardwell, until the shire was amalgamated into the Cassowary Coast Region in 2008; the regional council has its headquarters in Innisfail. In March 2015, a farm at Tully tested positive for the soil-borne Panama disease. Follow-up testing confirmed the results. One of the strains of the disease affects all types of bananas and has only been detected in the Northern Territory.
Harvesting continued on the property with strict protocols allowing the farm to continue to operate and distribute product without posing a threat. Tully has a number of heritage-listed sites, including: 17 Mars Street: Tully State School 69 Bryant Street: Tully Court House Tully has a tropical rainforest climate. With an average annual rainfall exceeding 4,000 millimetres, the highest annual rainfall in a populated area of Australia, Tully is arguably the wettest town in Australia – a rivalry exists between Tully and the nearby town of Babinda for said title in which most years Babinda wins. Although Tully's average rainfall is less than Babinda, in 2003 a giant gumboot was erected as a monument to the town's climate. Buildings in Tully were badly damaged by Cyclone Yasi on 3 February 2011. According to residents, Tully was "...a scene of mass devastation". An unknown number of homes were destroyed as intense winds, estimated at 300 km/h, battered the area. Many other homes not destroyed or roof damage.
As daybreak came, reports from the town stated that about 90 percent of the structures along the main avenue sustained extensive damage. The Cassowary Coast Regional Council operates the Dorothy Jones Library at Tully; the Tully branch of the Queensland Country Women's Association meets at the CWA Hall at 5 Plumb Street. Tully railway station is a prominent station on the main North Coast Railway Line, situated just over halfway between Townsville and Cairns. By 10 December 1924, Tully was connected with both Innisfail. Tully State High School has serviced students in the Tully district since its establishment in 1964. Tully State High School has an enrolment of 630 students; as of 2016, Richard Graham is the principal of the school. Tully State High School has been accredited as a Centre of Excellence in Mathematics and Technology and is one of only a few Reef Guardian schools; the campus is situated on extensive grounds, 38 hectares, includes an aquaculture centre, a worm farm, an arboretum, a herd of cattle and several sports fields.
The high school has since been rebuilt. Tully State School caters to the educational needs of the town's primary school children; when erected in 1924, it was known as Banyan Provisional and has since gone through a number of name changes: Tully Provisional. The school's current motto is "Work well and succeed". St. Clare's Parish School is a Catholic primary school, erected in 1928. Tully Tigers, is the local Rugby League club. One of their most famous juniors is former Cowboys forward Peter Jones. Tully was once one of the biggest sporting hubs in Far North Queensland, but since the economic crisis has hit, they are looking for more and more ways to support their clubs. Tully is the last place; the Golden Gumboot is in the park on corner of Hort Street. Built in 2003, the Gumboot is 6.1 metres long and 7. 9 metres high.
Coen is a town and locality in the Shire of Cook, Australia. The town of Coen is inland on the Peninsula Developmental Road, the main road on the Cape York Peninsula in far northern Queensland. In the 2011 census, Coen had a population of 416 people; the locality of Coen is on the eastern side of Cape York Peninsula with the Coral Sea forming its eastern boundary. Part of the northern boundary follows the Archer River, while the Coen River forms part of its western boundary; the Peninsula Developmental Road runs north to south through the locality. In 1623, Jan Carstensz, the navigator of the ship Pera of the Dutch East India Company named a river on Cape York Peninsula after Jan Pieterszoon Coen, the Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies. Today that river is known as the Archer River and the name Coen River is given to one of its tributaries. Gold was discovered on the Coen River in 1876. Coen came into being first as a small fort built by gold miners and prospectors in May 1877 but this first gold rush came to an end, the settlement did not recover until 1883.
It became a centre for several small goldmines in the region but, in 1893, the rich Great Northern mine boomed and the town became a more substantial place. Coen Post Office opened on 20 June 1893; the Great Northern mine continued operations until 1916 and produced some 52,000 troy ounces of gold before it closed. On 3 July 2014, Barry Port retired from the Queensland Police, he was Australia's last Aboriginal police tracker. In his 36 years working for the police, he has tracked criminals, missing stowaways. Today Coen provides services to the region, is an important supply point on the long unpaved road leading to Weipa and other northern communities, it is a popular stopping point for tourists driving to the tip of Cape York - the northernmost part of the Australian mainland. It has an airstrip at Coen Airport, public library, hotel/motel, guest house, two general stores and fuel outlets, post office, police station, camping grounds, primary school kindergarten, ranger base and more. There is a scheduled air service to Cairns four times a week.
Coen is an ideal destination for birdwatchers: there are good accommodations and a large and varied bird fauna with representatives from rain forest, monsoon forest and coastal forests. Coen has a number of heritage-listed sites, including: Coleman Close: Coen Carrier Station Moon, Ron & Viv. 2003. Cape York: An Adventurer's Guide. 9th edition. Moon Adventure Publications, Victoria. ISBN 0-9578766-4-5 Roberts, Jan. 1981. Massacres to Mining: The Colonization of Aboriginal Australia. Dove Communications, Victoria. Rev. Australian ed. Previous ed.: CIMRA and War on Want, 1978, London. ISBN 0-85924-171-8. Premier's Department. 1989. Cape York Peninsula Resource Analysis. Cairns.. ISBN 0-7242-7008-6 Ryan and Burwell, eds. 2000. Wildlife of Tropical North Queensland: Cooktown to Mackay. Queensland Museum, Brisbane. ISBN 0-85905-045-9. Scarth-Johnson, Vera. 2000. National Treasures: Flowering plants of Cooktown and Northern Australia. Vera Scarth-Johnson Gallery Association, Cooktown. ISBN 0-646-39726-5. Sutton, Peter.
Languages of Cape York: Papers presented to a Symposium organised by the Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies. Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies, Canberra.. ISBN 0-85575-046-4 Wallace, Lennie. 2003. Cape York Peninsula: A History of Unlauded Heroes 1845-2003. Central Queensland University Press, Rockhampton. ISBN 1-876780-43-6 Wynter, Jo and Hill, John. 1991. Cape York Peninsula: Pathways to Community Economic Development; the Final Report of The Community Economic Development Projects Cook Shire. Cook Shire Council. McIvor, Roy. Cockatoo: My Life in Cape York. Stories and Art. Roy McIvor. Magabala Books. Broome, Western Australia. ISBN 978-1-921248-22-1
Mareeba is a town in Far North Queensland, Australia. The town is 417 metres above sea level on the confluence of the Barron River, Granite Creek and Emerald Creek, it is within the local government area of Shire of Mareeba. The town's name is derived from an Aboriginal word meaning meeting of the waters. In the 2011 census, Mareeba had a population of 10,181 people. Prior to European settlement, the area around Mareeba was inhabited by the Muluridji people, they maintained a hunter/gatherer existence in the area between Mount Carbine, Mareeba and Woodville concentrated between Biboohra and Mount Molloy. In the local Aboriginal language, Mareeba means meeting of the waters - referring to the point at which the Barron River is joined by Granite Creek. On 26 May 1875 James Venture Mulligan became the first European to see the future site of Mareeba when he rode up the eastern bank of the Barron River, passed the junctions of Emerald Creek and Granite Creek; the Mareeba area was first settled by Europeans in 1877 by John Atherton, who arrived with cattle at Emerald End, just north of the town today.
Mareeba became a busy coach stop for Cobb & Co on the road from Port Douglas to Herberton. When the railway arrived in 1893, Mareeba grew into a busy town. Mareeba Post Office opened on 25 August 1893. A Mareeba Diggings Post Office opened by 1893 and closed in 1905. From 1942 to 1945, up to 10,000 Australian and US service personnel used Mareeba Airfield as a staging post for battles in New Guinea and the Pacific; the Americans referred to it as Hoevet Field in honour of Major Dean Carol "Pinky" Hoevet, killed on 16 August 1942. Units that were based at Mareeba during World War II included No. 5 Squadron RAAF, No. 100 Squadron RAAF, the Australian 33rd Light A-A Battery, 19th Bomb Group USAAC, 43rd Bomb Group USAAC and 8th Fighter Group USAAC. Mareeba State School opened on 28 August 1893. Mareeba State High School opened on 25 January 1960. Mareeba Library opened in 1958 and underwent a major refurbishment in 1985. At the 2006 census, Mareeba had a population of 6,806. In October 2011, most of the land of the former state farm / research station at Kairi was sold by the Queensland Government, retaining only 26 hectares.
The sale of the land was to fund the establishment of the Agri-Science Hub at Peters Street in Mareeba. The hub focusses on agricultural development, together with education and training. James Cook University is a partner of the hub, researching tropical agriculture and biosecurity; the hub opened on 16 December 2011. According to the 2016 census, Mareeba includes the largest Italian Australian community of any suburb in Queensland, numbering 1,608 individuals and making up 10.8% of the town's population. Mareeba has a number of heritage-listed sites, including: Cairns - Kuranda Line: Rail Bridge over Christmas Creek 136 Walsh Street: Mareeba Shire Hall 167 Walsh Street: Assay Office Mareeba has a tropical savanna climate. Mareeba's tag line on signs coming into the region is "300 sunny days a year" this is because Mareeba is in what is called a rain shadow. Numerous crops are grown throughout Mareeba Shire, including avocados, lychees, sugar cane, macadamias, pineapples, tea tree oil, a variety of vegetables and tropical fruits.
Poultry and cattle are common. Tobacco was once the main grown crop of the local economy, but is no longer grown within the Mareeba shire; the town's main street is the Mulligan Highway which branches off from the Kennedy Highway when coming in from Cairns away passing localities such as Speewah and The Barron Gorge. Tourism contributes to the local economy. Tourist attractions in the Mareeba Shire include the Golden Drop Mango Winery, Jaques Coffee Plantation, Coffee Works, Mareeba Heritage Museum, Mareeba Rock Wallabies and Granite Gorge Nature Park; the Lotus Glen Correctional Centre is located in Arriga, 14 km outside Mareeba, is considered to be in Mareeba. Mareeba has two secondary schools and a TAFE campus. There are several day care centres in the town. St Thomas of Villanova Parish School Mareeba State School Mareeba State High School St. Stephen's Catholic College Tropical North Institute of TAFEMareeba State School opened on 28 August 1893 and Mareeba State High School opened on 25 January 1960.
St Thomas of Villanova Parish School opened on 1 January 1909 and for a period of two years during World War Two, Mareeba State School was taken over by the army, so St Thomas’ accommodated the entire school population of Mareeba. St Thomas' celebrated their centenary in 2009. On 24 January 2006 St Stephen's Catholic College opened after a nearly 10 year approval process regarding the provision of Catholic secondary education. Mareeba Hospital is in the Tablelands Health District, it provides 52 beds, with surgical, pediatric, emergency and x-ray facilities. Mareeba's local sporting teams are: Rugby league — Mareeba Gladiators: The Gladiators participate in the Cairns District Rugby League competition, they last won the Premiership in 2007. Football — Mareeba United Football ClubThe Mareeba United Football Club, known as the Mareeba Bulls is based at Borzi Park, Mareeba: the Bulls have dominated the local football scene for the past decade; the Bulls were Grand Final winners in 2003, Grand Final Winners and NQ Champions in 2004, FNQ premiers and NQ Champions in 2005, FNQ Grand final winners and 2006 and FNQ premier and NQ Champions in 2008.
The sustained success of the Bulls has brought the title for Mareeba as'Football Capital of North Q
Weipa is a mining town on the Gulf of Carpentaria coast of the Cape York Peninsula in Queensland, is the largest town on the Cape. At the 2011 census, Weipa had a population of 3,334, it exists because of the enormous bauxite deposits along the coast. The Port of Weipa is involved in exports of bauxite. Over the last decade or so there have been occasional shipments of live cattle from the port. Weipa is just south of Duyfken Point, a location now agreed to be the first recorded point of European contact with the Australian continent. Dutch explorer Willem Janszoon, on his ship the Duyfken, sighted the coast here in 1606; this was 164 years. In 1895 Presbyterian missionary Reverend Nicholas John Hey established a mission at the junction of Embley River and Spring Creek which he called Weipa, believed to derive from the Anhathangayth word meaning fighting ground. In 1932 the mission relocated 28 kilometres to Jessica Point continuing under the same name. Restrictive legislation was enacted by the state of Queensland in 1911, making the Protector the legal guardian of every Aborigine and half-caste child, the right to confine any such person within any reserve or Aboriginal institution, the right to imprison any Aborigine or half-caste for 14 days if, in the Protector's judgement, they were guilty of neglect of duty, gross insubordination or wilful preaching of disobedience.
It gave powers to the police to confine Aborigines to reserves to "protect them from corruption". This latter power was given by Comalco in 1957 to justify the removal of Weipa Aborigines. In 1932 the community had to relocate to its present site, at Jessica Point now called Napranum because of malaria, it is about 12 kilometres south of the present town of Weipa. At this time most of the people were Awngthim but soon different tribes and clans were brought from Old Mapoon, other communities. In 1955 a geologist, Henry Evans, discovered that the red cliffs on the Aboriginal reserve remarked on by the early Dutch explorers and Matthew Flinders, were enormous deposits of bauxite – the ore from which aluminium is made – and to a lesser extent tungsten; the "Comalco Act of 1957" revoked the reserve status, giving the company 5,760 square km of Aboriginal reserve land on the west coast of the Peninsula and 5,135 square km on the east coast of Aboriginal-owned land. Mining commenced in 1960; the mission became a government settlement in 1966 with continued attempts by Comalco to relocate the whole community elsewhere.
The company built a new town for its workers on the other side of the bay. Weipa has a tropical savanna climate, with hot temperatures above 30 °C throughout the year. Three distinct seasons exist; the wet season, which runs from January to April, is characterised by heavy downpours on an daily basis. Monsoon lows and tropical cyclones cause more extreme rainfall, up to 200 mm in 24 hours; the dry season, running from May to September, features dry days. The build-up season, running from October to December, is oppressively hot and humid, with frequent days over 35 °C. Dewpoints in the wet season average 24 °C. Rainfall during the build-up is infrequent, but when it does occur, it falls in brief, heavy downpours associated with severe thunderstorms; these seasons are not always set, however. Extreme temperatures have ranged from 10.2 °C to 38.4 °C. The highest daily rainfall recorded was 327.8 mm during the passage of Tropical Cyclone Oswald in January 2013. The present town was constructed by Comalco, a large aluminium company, which began making trial shipments of bauxite to Japan in 1962.
A railway was constructed to transport the ore from the mine at Andoom to the dump of the export facility at Lorim Point. The bauxite mine is the world's largest with planned expansions increasing the margin over other mines in 2010. There are two schools in Weipa; the Western Cape College is a government co-educational school. It is on the corner of Eastern Avenues in Rocky Point. In 2015, the school had an enrolment of 1,073 students with 93 teachers. St Joseph's Parish School is a Roman Catholic co-educational primary school at 2 Boundary Road, Rocky Point. Opened in 2016, the school only offered enrolment in years P-3 but expects in 2018 to be able to offer enrolment across all primary levels. Weipa has a visitor's centre, swimming pool, bowling green, golf club and squash courts. There are basketball courts as well as football fields. Weipa Town Authority operates a public library at Hibberd Drive in Weipa. At Nanum the shopping precinct has a Woolworths supermarket, coffee shop, travel agent, clothing shop, post office, newsagency / sports shop and butchers.
There is a chemist and fishing store and within walking distance is a gift shop and whitegoods store, credit union and government social security office. At Evans Landing there are a
Aurukun is a town and locality in the Shire of Aurukun in Far North Queensland, Australia. It is an Indigenous community. In 2019, Aurukun had part of Northern Territory’s Cyclone Trevor, no thanks to it being on the gulf. Aurukun situated 100 kilometres south of Weipa; the town faces west to the Gulf of Carpentaria, during the wet season, roads are impassable. The area is rich in bauxite. At the 2016 census, Aurukun had a population of 1,269, including 1,147 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, up from a total population of 1,043 in 2006. 95.8% of people were born in Australia. 10.6% of people only spoke English at home. Other languages spoken at home included Cape York Peninsula Languages 61.6% and Wik Mungkan 14.7%. The most common responses for religion were Uniting Church 44.3%, No Religion 29.3% and Presbyterian and Reformed 11.0%. Aurukun has a plethora of tribal names. There are some 50 to 60 families from five major clan groups, which are split into two factions — the "top end" and "bottom end".
Violent conflict between the two groups creates problems in the community on a regular basis. The first recorded contact between Europeans and Aboriginals was near Aurukun on the Janszoon voyage of 1605–06; the Aurukun Mission was established on 4 August 1904 for the Presbyterian Church of Australia by the Reverend Arthur and Mrs Mary Richter, two Moravian missionaries and managed under the provisions of the Queensland Aborigines Act. Aboriginal people were relocated from a large surrounding area, many against their will, to the mission settlement. Aurukun was "ruled" for 40 years by Reverend William Mackenzie - as the missions Chief Protector for the Aboriginal Protection Board; the town had a sawmill and bakery. Today there is only a general store. Aurukun Post Office opened on 1 July 1972. In 1978, the Queensland government decided to take over control of both the Aurukun and Mornington Island Reserves. Both communities protested seeking the help of the Federal government. After lengthy negotiations, legislation for self-management of the two reserves was introduced into federal parliament and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Act was passed on 7 April 1978.
Further negotiations took place between State and Federal Ministers and on 22 May 1978, the Local Government Act came into force giving a 50-year lease to the Shire of Aurukun to be trustee for the land within the boundaries. Aurukun and Mornington Shire remain the only Aboriginal communities in Queensland constituted as local authorities. With the coming of the missionaries, children were confined to dormitories to isolate them from the influence of their people. However, many people remained outside the mission up until the 1950s, ensuring the culture remained strong. In 1975, the community was placed under direct State government control. In 1978, the Aurukun people were given a 50-year lease on their land under the administration of the shire clerk and an elected Aboriginal Council. Following the Wik case the land has reverted to Native Title held by the Wik people; the focal area of the Wik lies between the Archer and Edward Rivers of Western Cape York Peninsula and inland to Coen. Most Wik people still live in this triangle.
In 2007, nine Aurukun males received probation and other light sentences after being found guilty of raping a ten-year-old girl. The mild sentences received international condemnation and were the catalyst for a review of sexual abuse sentencing in Queensland Indigenous communities. In March 2008, the Sydney Morning Herald reported that standards of justice and child safety had collapsed in Aurukun, that the local community justice group had called for children to be removed from the town for their own safety and wellbeing. Aurukun has a primary school, operated by Cape York Aboriginal Australian Academy in a unique partnership with Education Queensland; the school opened on 29 January 1974 and caters for students from pre-prep to year 7. The school remains the only school in Aurukun. Classroom instruction is dedicated to teaching mainstream curriculum in English literacy and numeracy using Direct Instruction; the Direct Instruction method focuses on individual student outcomes and weekly tests with the aim to ensure students are mastering literacy and numeracy basics.
Students are taught a comprehensive Indigenous culture and language program which aims to give children fluency in their own cultures and enjoy the best of both worlds. The school provides an extended school day which involves artistic and sports programs which aims to give children increased confidence and prepare them for moving between homelands and study in the wider world. In 2008, one in three children were not enrolled for primary school. Following welfare reform trials introduced in July 2008, school attendance had risen from an average of 37 per cent to 63 per cent in September 2009. Following incidents where teachers and the principal were threatened, rocks were thrown at their housing, children as young as six tried to steal a car, all teachers were evacuated from the school in May 2016; as a result, the school was closed for six weeks with only distance education programs being continued. The incidents have drawn the effectiveness of the Direct Instruction method into question, as of July 2016 the Queensland Government is implementing an Australian curriculum into the school alongside Direct Instruction.
The Aurukun Primary Health Care Centre is run by Apunipima Cape York Health Council, a community controlled A