The Goondiwindi Regional Council area is located in south-west Queensland, about 350 kilometres south-west of the Brisbane CBD. The Goondiwindi Regional Council area is bounded by the Western Downs Regional Council area and the Toowoomba Regional Council area in the north, the Southern Downs Regional Council area in the east, the New South Wales border, Tenterfield Shire, Inverell Shire and Moree Plains Shire in the south, and Balonne Shire in the west.
The Goondiwindi Regional Council area includes the localities of Beebo, Billa Billa, Bonshaw (part), Boondandilla, Brush Creek, Bungunya, Bybera, Calingunee, Callandoon, Canning Creek (part), Cement Mills, Coolmunda, Daymar, Glenarbon, Goodar, Goondiwindi, Gore, Greenup, Inglewood, Kindon, Kioma, Kurumbul, Limevale, Lundavra, Maidenhead, Moonie (part), Mosquito Creek, Mungindi (part), North Bungunya, North Talwood, Oman Ama, Riverton, Silver Spur, Smithlea, South Talwood, Tarawera, Terrica, Texas (part), Toobeah, Warroo, Watsons Crossing, Weengallon, Whetstone, Wondalli, Wyaga, Yagaburne and Yelarbon.
The Goondiwindi Regional Council area is predominantly rural, with urban areas in a number of townships. The largest urban centre is Goondiwindi (including residential, commercial and industrial areas), with small townships at Inglewood and Texas. Smaller townships and villages are located at Bungunya, Talwood, Toobeah and Yelarbon. The Council area encompasses a total land area of about 19,300 square kilometres. Rural land is used largely for agriculture, particularly cotton and grain growing, and sheep and cattle grazing, with forestry also being an important industry.
Goondiwindi is thought to be named from an Aboriginal word meaning “the resting place of birds”.
The original inhabitants of the Goondiwindi area were the Bigambul Aboriginal people.
European settlement dates from the 1830s, with land used initially for grazing, and later for timber-getting and grain growing. Growth took place from the mid to late 1800s when several small townships were established, including the township of Goondiwindi in the late 1850s. Expansion continued during the early 1900s, spurred by the opening of railway lines, with the population of the Council area rising from under 6,000 in 1911 to about 8,700 in 1933. Wheat growing became significant from the 1950s, aided by irrigation from weirs and dams. Wool production was the main pastoral activity until the 1960s, with cattle grazing and cotton growing becoming significant from the 1970s. Population growth took place in the post-war years, particularly in the townships, with the population rising to about 9,100 in 1947, and then to 10,400 in 1954. The population reached its peak in 1961 at over 11,000 people. The population then declined slightly, falling to about 10,200 in 1971 and 9,300 in 1981. The population then gradually increased, rising to about 10,000 in 1991. The population declined slightly between 1991 and 1996, then increased from about 9,700 in 1996 to about 10,300 in 2001. The population was then relatively stable to 2006, with slight growth to about 10,700 in 2011.
Major features of the Council area include the Goondiwindi township, Bendidee National Park, Coolamunda Dam, Goondiwindi Customs House Museum, Goondiwindi Waggamba Community Cultural Centre, Goondiwindi Regional Civic Centre, Goondiwindi Hospital, Goondiwindi Botanical Gardens, Goondiwindi Natural Heritage and Water Park, Goondiwindi Golf Club, Inglewood Golf Club, Texas Golf Club, Goondiwindi Racecourse, Goondiwindi Showgrounds, MacIntyre Sports Complex, Texas Sports Complex, Goondiwindi Apex Park, Macintyre Brook, Yelarbon Lagoon, the Macintyre River and numerous state forests.
The Goondiwindi Regional Council area is served by the Barwon Highway, the Cunningham Highway, the Gore Highway, the Leichhardt Highway and the Newell Highway.
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