Beechmont, a rural locality, is on a northerly spur of the McPherson Range, the watershed of the Nerang River. It is 26 km inland from Burleigh Heads. Lower Beechmont is 10 km north of Beechmont, in the direction of Canungra, and both are in Scenic Rim Regional Council's area.

The area was exploited by timber getters and was known as Beech Mountain. Farm settlements and sawmills began around 1882, and a survey and land selection on Beech Mountain occurred in 1882. Orcharding – mainly citrus – began in the early 1890s, and by 1900 it was quite well established. Dairying started in 1904.

In 1904 a school opened in a barn and four years later a proper school building was constructed. A progress association was formed in 1916. After World War I soldier settlers came to Lower Beechmont where another school was opened in 1922. Telephone communication came in 1922, but more pressing was road communication for transporting sawlogs and dairy-produce deliveries to the Kingston butter factory. The roads to Nerang and Canungra were both poor. Improvement of the Canungra road began in 1923, which presaged a good deal of activity; more farm lots were auctioned in 1925, a local hall was built in 1926 (replacing Richter's barn) and a school of arts was opened in 1927. In the early 1930s the school was rebuilt, the school of arts was enlarged, a Presbyterian church was opened and tourism became important. The Groom family opened Binna Burra to the south – the road improvements nearly complete – and Beechmont had the Ben Vue guest house with a shop and a motor garage.

Dairying prospered after World War II, based around the South Coast Co-op. Milk production had been helped during the war by voracious demand from American troops stationed on the south coast, with postwar population growth ensuring continuity of demand. Reticulated electricity was laid on in 1961, although proximity to coastal markets and better roads triggered the closure of some local facilities: Lower Beechmont school (1972) and the post office (1975). Population growth was not inhibited, however, and in 1998 the school was rebuilt to accommodate over 200 pupils. Numerous artists and crafts people have moved into Beechmont, and several cafes look after the tourist traffic. The nearby Binna Burra Mountain Lodge, begun in the 1930s by Romeo Lahey and Arthur Groom, forms part of the World Heritage listed Central Eastern Rainforest Reserve and is a cultural landscape listed on the Queensland heritage register.

Beechmont's census populations have been:

Census DatePopulation

Lower Beechmont's census populations have been:

census datepopulation

Robert Longhurst, ed, Taming a plateau: a history of the Beechmont district, Beechmont, Beechmont Centenary Association, 1992


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