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Grandchester, Queensland facts for kids

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Grandchester railway station
Grandchester is located in Queensland
Location in Queensland
Population 444 (2016 census)
 • Density 7.735/km2 (20.03/sq mi)
Postcode(s) 4340
Area 57.4 km2 (22.2 sq mi)
Time zone AEST (UTC+10:00)
LGA(s) City of Ipswich
State electorate(s)
  • Scenic Rim
  • Ipswich West
Federal Division(s) Blair
Localities around Grandchester:
Laidley Summerholm Woolshed
Laidley South Grandchester Calvert
Mulgowie Mount Mort Lower Mount Walker

Grandchester is a rural town and locality in the City of Ipswich, Queensland, Australia. In the 2016 census, Grandchester had a population of 444 people.


Grandchester was the initial terminus of the first narrow gauge mainline railway in the world. The first track opened to traffic on 31 July 1865 from Ipswich, as the Queensland Government was keen to prove the viability of its controversial 'pony railway'. The construction of the Victoria Tunnel through the Little Liverpool Range to the west of Grandchester was behind schedule, and so although it served a very small population, Bigges Camp (as it was initially known) became the terminus for 10 months, until the line was extended to Gatton. The original Grandchester railway station, including the former Station Master's residence, still exists.

Grandchester Post Office opened on 1 January 1866 after the arrival of the railway and closed in 1978.

Grandchester Sawmills is one of the last known surviving steam-powered flat-belt sawmills in Australia. The engine powering it was manufactured in 1908, and the mill has been in operation from 1945. It was destroyed by a fire, sometime in the early hours of 6 May 2007.

Work on the long process of restoring the mill to its former glory started almost immediately in the days following the fire. The mill is operating once again with work still continuing on the restoration. This will ensure that this important piece of history is preserved for the generations that follow.

Heritage listings

Grandchester has a number of heritage-listed sites, including:


Grandchester State School is a government primary (Prep-6) school for boys and girls at School Road (27°39′56″S 152°27′55″E / 27.6655°S 152.4653°E / -27.6655; 152.4653 (Grandchester State School)). In 2017, the school had an enrolment of 37 students with 6 teachers (3 full-time equivalent) and 5 non-teaching staff (3 full-time equivalent).

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