REAL AUSTRALIA

Voice of Real Australia: Beaudesert community has a cow over its heritage saleyard

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Top left: Peter Hayes; middle left: Beaudesert Lawyer Cliff Kroesen; bottom left: Mayor Greg Christensen, photos: Larraine Sathicq. Main: The saleyards. Photo: Queensland Government

Top left: Peter Hayes; middle left: Beaudesert Lawyer Cliff Kroesen; bottom left: Mayor Greg Christensen, photos: Larraine Sathicq. Main: The saleyards. Photo: Queensland Government

Heritage buildings give country towns their character.

When a site is granted heritage it is usually cause for celebration. But in an unusual case, a local government is appealing against a recently enshrined pig and calf saleyard in Beaudesert in Queensland's Scenic Rim region.

The timber small stock saleyard built in 1961 was accepted into the Queensland state register in February this year.

It's the only remaining saleyard of a railway complex that saw tens of thousands of animals passing through Beaudesert in the first half of the 20th century. Back then the town of 6000 was the centre of a premier dairy and pig production region.

Things changed in the second half of the 20th century as producers consolidated into enterprises which sold directly. But the pig and calf sales still continue on a smaller scale at the purpose-built saleyard, continuing a tradition 116 years old.

The fortnightly sale attracts farmers and hobbyists from all across south east Queensland and even NSW.

Hundreds gather on Monday mornings to buy and sell, do their town errands and catch up with friends.

It's a social event and tourist attraction, as well as a business, that sees $10,000 to $20,000 change hands at each fortnightly sale.

But the Beaudesert pig and calf sales will stop at the end of this month. Scenic Rim Regional council will not renew the lease citing health and safety reasons.

The council had wanted to remove the saleyard structure itself as part of its town centre revitalisation plans.

But the move outraged some members of the community and a campaign to save the beloved saleyard kicked off. This resulted in the saleyard being protected under state heritage listing.

Now the council is fighting back, challenging that heritage listing with an appeal to the Queensland Planning and Environment Court.

On this week's episode of the Voice of Real Australia podcast we go to Beaudesert to find out more about the saleyards. Listen now on your favourite podcast app.

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