Woolshed Heritage Festival

Jondaryan is a small town located between Toowoomba and Dalby on Queensland‘s Darling Downs. While the town itself may consist only of a pub and a service station, its heart and soul is 3km down the road. It is the Jondaryan Woolshed. Steeped in history of early agricultural pioneers, the Woolshed is a living museum that preserves, for future generations, the memories and lifestyle of yesteryear on the land.

Each September the Jondaryan Woolshed hosts the Australian Heritage Festival, attracting regulars and first timers from around the nation to join in the 9-day festival that showcases everything to do with our agricultural history. From shearing competitions and weaving, to horse drawn and early self-powered farm machinery. There is much to see and do with folk music from a stage in the food court area, the working machinery demonstrations, the sheep dog trials, horse events, camp cooking, blacksmith demonstrations and whip making… the list goes on.

Each day of the festival at lunch time, the Grand Parade draws a large crowd to watch the procession of everything that can walk rumble huff’n’puff or crawl through the Woolshed village. Participants dress in period costume, riding on animals or machines or just walking. It is truly a grand spectacle.

Within the grounds of the Woolshed, hundreds of old farm machines are kept in perpetuity, some working, others awaiting restoration. There are steam engines, early combine harvesters, tractors and horse drawn implements. Steam driven pumps and a steam driven sawmill show how early technology played its part on the land.

The property was a 19th century sheep station. As described in the song “Click Go the Shears”, the boss of the board was “paying strict attention” that the shearers cut the fleece off clean. The golden fleece was the wealth of the nation, a nation that rode on the sheep’s back. It was a time of wealth from the land, much as we now experience the wealth of the mining industry.

There are acres of space here and much of is has been put to good use as a camping ground. Caravans, motorhomes and tents cover the hills and dales all the way down to the creek.

This is a beautiful place with a sense of peace and tranquillity. It is little wonder that many who visit return year after year, often pitching in as volunteer workers to ensure that the Jondaryan Heritage Festival is an ongoing success.

1 comment to Woolshed Heritage Festival

  • The Australian Heritage Festival will be held on the May Labour Day Long weekend 2012 (5th – 7th May). Thanks Steve for your wonderful words about our festival 🙂

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