Towns in Australia

Exploring Australia, town by town

Rolleston QLD


Postcode: 4702

Rolleston is a small town of approximately 500 persons in Queensland. It is located in the Bauhinia Shire of Queensland Central Highlands, 275 km west of Gladstone and approximately 600 km northwest of Brisbane. It lies on the junction of the Carnarvon, Gregory and Dawson highways.

There is a large coal mine nearby and the town also serves as a staging point for trips to the Carnarvon National Park.

Local residents protested and in 1863 petitioned the Governor, Sir George Bowen. In March 1864 the new proprietors of the public house, Messrs Henriques and Co added their weight to the cause. Consequently the town was surveyed by the Surveyor General, Augustus Gregory who on May 25 1865 submitted the details of the new township to the governor for his approval. The town known then as Brown Town was to be called Rolleston after the pastoralist Christopher Rolleston. By 1871 Rolleston had a population of 30 persons, several residences, an unofficial Post Office and a provisional school with nine pupils enrolled, and Frank Nicholson as the first principal. In 1996 the town celebrated 125 years of education with a big Back to Rolleston gala weekend.

Rolleston is the closest town to the magnificent Carnarvon Gorge, one of the most beautiful National Parks in Queensland. Also a new National Park, Albinia, runs nearly to the town. Not far away too is the splendid Arcadia Valley in which lies the unusual Lake Nuga Nuga. Not far below Rolleston is the historical “Big Water Hole” where Leichhardt probably camped and was the scene of a big Aborigine Camp as described by Vic Priddle in “Dung On His Boots”.