Gympie Show; QCWA Centenary
Mr PERRETT (Gympie—LNP) (7.01 pm): Two weeks ago Gympie was hit by its third flood this
year. It reached 16 metres. The Normanby and Kidd bridges were closed, cutting access to the south
side of Gympie. A number of businesses were impacted again. They were still recovering from the
events from earlier this year.
Another casualty of the flood was our much loved Gympie Show. It has been through many
challenges over the past few years. In 2020 it was cancelled because of COVID. This year it fought for
the opportunity to even go ahead. Government mandates on shows meant that the show committee
could not hold events to help raise funds to hold the show. The mandates discriminated against shows.
Rules were applied solely to the Gympie Show and a fundraiser but not to other events and activities
at the same venue.
Following a strong campaign, within 12 days 6,134 signatures were gathered on a petition
protesting the mandates. I was pleased to sponsor that petition. Everyone was looking forward to the
show to help bring our community together following the floods. When the green light was finally given,
the Gympie Show committee scrambled to organise a three-day event. It had five weeks to pull together
Queensland’s third largest agricultural show.
The show had a muddy start but, unfortunately, the rain kept falling and events were quickly
rescheduled and some cancelled. It was disappointing that on the third day, the Saturday, the show had
to be cancelled because Gympie was again flooding and roads and bridges were cut.
The financial cost to the show society is significant. The financial burden would not be as
immense if the government had acted quickly to clear up the discriminatory mandate issues. The
committee could have held fundraising events earlier in the year. This also impacts the many schools
and P&Cs, kindergartens, sporting groups, community organisations and service clubs which raise
thousands from manning gates, parking and traffic control, cleaning facilities, and running bars and food
I was pleased to attend the show and recognise the contribution of patron, past president and
long-time supporter Bill Bishop, who died in January. Shows cannot exist without the tremendous efforts
of volunteers who put in long, unpaid hours. The success of the Gympie Show is testament to the work
and commitment of more than 330 volunteers and show committee members including the president,
Debra Brown, and vice-president, Warren Smith.
Today it was a great pleasure to host the QCWA centenary barbecue lunch, a magnificent
milestone. Office-bearers from across Queensland attended the event organised by the centenary team
Christine King and Marina Taylor. Congratulations to those who were involved. I wish the QCWA every
success in going for a double century.