State Member for Caloundra Mark McArdle today said he would work with the Caloundra Residents Association to fund the replacement of a bronze plaque memorialising founding Caloundra settler and famous explorer William Landsborough, which has deteriorated over the years.
It comes as Mr McArdle recently meet with Caloundra Resident Association executive committee members about the sad state of the plaque which sits at the park located in the middle of the Golden Beach Shopping precinct, across from the pedestrian crossing.
“I have been discussing the issue of the plaque with Residents Association President Ian Smyth and I agree that something needs to be done about it,” Mr McArdle said.
“The plaque was placed here to commemorate the first resting place of William Landsborough and honour his legacy as one of Queensland and indeed Australia’s greatest explorers.
“As can happen, the plaque has aged and deteriorated with the elements but the time has come for it to be replaced so we can keep Landsborough’s legacy alive. Memorial items of this nature should not be allowed to fall to this level of disrepair before being replaced.
“I have acquired a quote of $1,032.90 to have an exact replica of the plaque cast in a stronger metal and affixed to the rock. As this falls under the jurisdiction of Council’s heritage department I have asked Council to cover half the cost; otherwise I am prepared to fund it completely.”
“This park and the plaque are significant to Caloundra and the district because William Landsborough was one of founding Fathers of Caloundra,” Mr Smyth said.
“Many things are named after him such as Landsborough Pde and Landsborough itself, so it is really important that we maintain this commemoration of him.”
Peter Ryan, Vice-President of the Caloundra Residents Association said he believed the plaque had nearly been forgotten by the community and its replacement would help highlight its existence.
“This plaque is hidden away and nearly forgotten so I thank Mark very much for bringing it to the community’s attention. This should be used as an opportunity to do something appropriate for the memory of William Landsborough,” Mr Ryan said.
Brady Sullivan, Residents Association Executive Committee Member agreed that the important role Landsborough played in Australian history should continue to be memorialised at the Park.
“William Landsborough’s story is significant to the heritage of both early Australia and the Caloundra region. His choice to call our beautiful region by the Pumicestone Passage home made him one of the early settlers of Caloundra,” Mr Sullivan said.
“In order to celebrate Caloundra, I think it is important to commemorate our wonderful history.”
“I look forward to announcing the future unveiling of the new plaque, but I would encourage the community to take a moment to visit the park and pay tribute to Caloundra’s rich history,” Mr McArdle said.
“I also wish to offer the existing plaque, with Council’s permission, to the Landsborough Museum to add to their collection,” Mr McArdle concluded.
William Landsborough was one of Queensland’s earliest explorers, best known for leading the search for Burke and Wills, and becoming the first European to cross the continent from the Gulf to Melbourne. Landsborough purchased 2372 acres of land on the Pumicestone Passage that he named “Loch Lamerough” – which is modern day Golden Beach. Landsborough passed away in 1886 and was laid to rest on his land. In 1913 his widow had him re-interred in Toowong Cemetery.