Wallumbilla, a rural town on the Warrego Highway, is 380 km north-west of Brisbane and 40 km east of Roma. Wallumbilla is the largest of three towns in the former Bendemere Shire, and was named after the Wallumbilla pastoral run, taken up in 1852.

The main western railway line was extended from Miles to Roma in 1879-80, coinciding with the opening up of some pastoral stations for farm selections. Most selections were clustered in a corridor along the railway. The Wallumbilla township was surveyed in 1889, and a school was opened in 1893. The infant town's nearest neighbour was Yuleba, 20 km eastwards, and the latter gained an ascendancy by being a transport interchange for goods and passengers bound for Surat and St George. When the Bendemere Shire was created in 1914, by severance from Bungil Shire, Yuleba won the contest for hosting the shire offices. Other facilities, however, went Wallumbilla's way: the hospital, the racecourse, the showground and, much later, the high school department (to Grade 10) which was added to the State primary school in 1964.

In terms of population Wallumbilla was slightly ahead of Yuleba for most of the twentieth century. When it had about 400 people in 1924, Pugh's Queensland Directory recorded two hotels, two general stores and sundry other shops and tradespeople. A picture theatre, the Nostalgic Queen's, was erected in 1939, and is listed on the Queensland Heritage Register.

Wallumbilla acts as a service town to surrounding primary industries and natural gas undertakings. Grainco and Elgas have silos and gas tanks near the railway. Elgas draws gas from the Surat Basin and it is processed at the Wallumbilla LPG plant. In addition to the civic facilities already mentioned Wallumbilla has a swimming pool, sports ground, shire library and general store. Its census populations have been:

Census DatePopulation

G.O. Armstrong, The changing years: a history of the Shire of Warroo incorporating Bendemere Shire history, Fortitude Valley, W.R. Smith & Patterson, 1970


Copyright © Centre for the Government of Queensland, 2018. All rights reserved.

UQ Logo