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Dirranbandi, Queensland facts for kids

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Dirranbandi is located in Queensland
Location in Queensland
Population 640 (2016 census)
 • Density 0.0776/km2 (0.201/sq mi)
Established 1885
Postcode(s) 4486
Elevation 173 m (568 ft)
Area 8,250.4 km2 (3,185.5 sq mi)
Time zone AEST (UTC+10:00)
LGA(s) Balonne Shire
State electorate(s) Warrego
Federal Division(s) Maranoa
Localities around Dirranbandi:
Bollon St George Thallon
Hebel Dirranbandi Mungindi
Angledool (NSW) Lightning Ridge (NSW) Collarenebri (NSW)

Dirranbandi is a rural town and locality in the Shire of Balonne, Queensland, Australia. The locality is on the border of Queensland with New South Wales. In the 2016 census, Dirranbandi had a population of 640 people.


Dirranbandi is located on the traditional lands of the Kooma people. However people in Dirranbandi recognise themselves as Kamilaroi.

The town reserve was surveyed in 1885. One hundred housing allotments were first set aside, followed by land for a police station, a state school, and post office.

Dirranbandi Provisional School opened in 1902 but closed in April 1905. It reopened on 20 January 1908 and became Dirranbandi State School on 1 January 1909. On 29 January 1963, a secondary school to Year 10 was added.

The railway reached Dirranbandi on 22 May 1913. Dirranbandi had the honour of being the destination for the last mail train to operate in Australia.

The Culgoa Floodplain National Park lies 130 kilometres (81 mi) to the south-west. The town experienced serious flooding in February–March 2010 and January 2011.

Origin of name

Dirranbandi is said by some to be an Aboriginal word meaning "swamp abounding in frogs and waterfowl". Although this is possible, there is no evidence in any of the region's languages to suggest that this is the case. The name may be derived from a Yuwaaliyaay dialect placename, Dhurrunbandaay, relating to ("hairy caterpillars") and baanda-y ("move in single file"). There is also a Yuwaalaraay noun, dhirrinbaa, meaning "bad weather camp, on high ground", possibly from dhirrin ("high ground") and -baa ("place of, time of").


Dirranbandi has a hospital, public library, civic centre, swimming pool, park and showground.

Popular culture

Australian author Robert G Barrett's main character Les Norton hails from Dirranbandi.

Slim Dusty sang about being the Dirranbandi Dandy in the song Cunnamulla Fella, which he co-wrote with Stan Coster.

Actor Ray Meagher grew up near Dirranbandi. He is best known for playing Alf Stewart on soap opera Home and Away, and credits one of his character's catchphrases "Stone the flamin' crows!" to a man who was a stock and station agent in town.


In the 2016 Census, there were 640 people in Dirranbandi. 79.9% of people were born in Australia and 85.2% of people spoke only English at home. The most common responses for religion were Catholic 29.3%, Anglican 26.5% No Religion 14.8%.


AU-Qld-Dirranbandi-state school-2021
State school including state high school (2021).

Dirranbandi P-10 State School is a government primary and secondary (Prep-10) school for boys and girls at Jane Street (28°34′37″S 148°13′48″E / 28.5770°S 148.2300°E / -28.5770; 148.2300 (Dirranbandi P-10 State School)). In 2015, the school had 73 students with 12 teachers (11 full-time equivalent). In 2017, the school had an enrolment of 65 students with 13 teachers (11 full-time equivalent) and 13 non-teaching staff (9 full-time equivalent).

Notable residents

AU-Qld-Dirranbandi-Tom DANCEY statue-2021
Statue of runner Tom DANCEY, Railway Street Park (2021).

Tom Dancey (1888–1957), a local stockman and Indigenous Australian, won Australia's most famous footrace, the Stawell Gift in 1910. It is indicated the £1000 prize money was kept by his handlers and he only got the trophy. A monument was dedicated to him in April 2011.

Brigadier General William Grant (1870–1939) post-WW1 bought land in the area. He was involved in the Australian Light Horse. Artwork commemorates Dirranbandi's contributions to the Light Horse in terms of men and horses.

Actor Ray Meagher grew up near Dirranbandi. He is best known for playing Alf Stewart on soap opera Home and Away, and credits one of his character's catchphrases "Stone the flamin' crows!" to Dick Backhouse who was a stock and station agent in town.

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