Toowoomba (Qld) to Tenterfield (NSW)

Wednesday 13th March 2019

After checking out of our motel, our first stop of the day was at the heritage-listed Toowoomba Railway Station.

Toowoomba Railway Station 13th March 2019 (1)

Toowoomba Railway Station Street-side view, 13th March 2019

Luckily we weren’t there to catch a train, as they only run twice a week. The Westlander, a seventeen-hour journey from Brisbane to Charleville (an outback Queensland town), calls at Toowoomba on Tuesdays and Thursdays. So either we’d ‘just missed one’, or were very early for the next one.

Nevertheless, there is much of interest in the architecture and history of these grand stations, and today, it was the old refreshment room that captured our attention. This sign best illustrates the running and atmosphere of this vital service in its heyday. Don’t you love that the wife was expected to cook for free? I bet her occupation was listed as “home duties“on the electoral roll.

Toowoomba Railway Station 13th March 2019 (4)

As part of their busy duties, the glamorous refreshment room “girls” had to ensure patrons did not run off with the gorgeous crockery . . .

Toowoomba Railway Station 13th March 2019 (8)

Toowoomba Railway Station 13th March 2019 (3)

Is it just me, or does anyone else find it amusing that the donation tin for the ambulance is next to the menu board? Perhaps it’s on account of serving ‘bras’ with chops.

Our next port of call was to the Queensland State Rose Garden situated in Newton Park. You can read much more about it by following the link. Although March is the end of summer and the best time for roses had passed, it was still a lovely park to stroll around. I love the contrast with the palm trees 🙂 Bill’s choice of his Alaskan souvenir t-shirt on an extremely hot day was also an amusing contrast.

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Leaving Toowoomba, we headed for Tenterfield about 200 klm or 120 miles south, and just across the border into New South Wales. The drive should have taken around 2.5 hours, but as usual, we stopped to sight-see along the way.

Outside the Queensland town of Warwick, we came across a sign to Glengallen Homestead.  Once the epitome of what a prosperous pastoralist would have called his castle –

Glengallen Homestead, Warwick, Qld 13th March 2019 (6) resized

It had fallen into such disrepair, that a descendant despaired for it  . . .

Glengallen Homestead, Warwick, Qld 13th March 2019 (5) resized

Until someone/s had the fortitude to restore it to glory, at least externally . . .

Internally, some areas have been completely restored and others left to show the extent of dereliction, or is still a work in progress. There are more photos and information in the above link, and here a just a few of my photos as examples  . . .

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When Australians say the countryside is dry, they mean dry, as illustrated by the two photos below.  13th March 2019 was about six months before the huge bushfires which broke out all down the eastern side of Australia, including Toowoomba. Warwick had already battled a big blaze the month before our visit. That close-up is meant to be grass. It crunched under our feet like frost on a January morning in a cold northern climate.

Our next intended stop was the gracious agricultural town of Warwick, but in the end, all we did was study the fine buildings as we cruised down the main street. That was because, while having a coffee break in the cafe at Glengallen Homestead, I’d picked up a brochure for what I thought was a police-dog training centre; and if we hurried up, we’d make their next public show – at 2pm.

Lawdogs Australia, in Stanthorpe, advertises itself as “A dog show with bite“.  Not police dogs, the dogs they train are used in various security and sniffer dog roles, and are usually raised and trained from puppies. It was definitely one of those “kids, don’t try this at home,” kind of shows. About half a dozen dogs of various sizes and breeds showed off their unique skills or where they were up to in training.

“Visitors can get up close and personal while seated behind a safety fence and be captivated as they see the dogs barking on command, developing their bite skills, training for future arrest scenarios, controlling suspects, finding hidden scent and working around agility equipment.”

Conan did an abrupt about-turn when he detected the scent of drugs.

Lawdogs Australia Stanthorpe 13th March 2019 (8)

Being a sniffer dog, rather than a security one, Conan was quite approachable. Here, he weighs up the wisdom of shaking Bill’s hand.

Lawdogs Australia Stanthorpe 13th March 2019 (3) resized

As well as this show, we had the opportunity to see how their new venture was coming along – teaching dogs how to sniff out truffles. I believe a year down the track that has developed well. Then to round off our visit, we spent time in their gift shop, and came home with some interesting sauces and jams made with local produce – all since eaten up.

Much as I had looked forward to exploring Warwick, there was little appeal in back-tracking 50 klm (30 miles), so we pushed on to Tenterfield, made famous by the Peter Allen song, Tenterfield Saddler. His wife, Liza Minnelli also sang a version.

For now though, our variety-filled, and still too *** hot day ended with finding a motel, meal, and a good night’s sleep.

22 thoughts on “Toowoomba (Qld) to Tenterfield (NSW)

  1. You gave me a sense of the history of these places with your photos. I used your link to visit the QLD State Rose Garden website and learned the facility was created through donations, is maintained by volunteers, less than 20 years old, yet has achieved international recognition. Impressive indeed.

    A blogger to blogger question, if I may. Your two slide shows in this post were created with what WordPress tool? They stand out nicely.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Perhaps my blog will inspire you to more adventures the next time you come to Australia. Sydney and Melbourne are lovely, but – like USA – there is a lot of country beyond the capital cities.

      WordPress, when composing a post – or direct into ‘media’:
      Select the images
      Drop down to slideshow
      * It used to be called ‘create gallery”, – not sure if that is still an option
      Hope this helps

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Scary biting woofs, but well-trained dogs are so impressive and still very loveable aren’t they. Looks like an interesting place to visit. Do you think in the near future that people will gradually return to ‘slow travelling’ and see the 17 hour train journey as the more acceptable way to get to Charleville than the two hour direct flight from Brisbane?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I love dogs, even though as a child I was twice bitten seriously enough to need hospital treatment. It was the same mean Corgi – a favourite breed of the Queen’s, LOL. Little dogs, like little men, can get so defensive they become aggressive.
      Conan, though, was a dear. I have several photos showcasing his gorgeous expressive face. Others were trained for intimidation.
      I have a girlfriend who has always kept large dogs. Someone once asked her the difference between a German Shepherd and an Alsatian. She answered, ‘One bites, the other doesn’t’ i.e. the name alters the perception of their personality. None of her dogs were ever trained to be aggressive. Actually, she had to train them to only eat on command, in case people who were nervous of them fed them baited meat.

      I mean to do a holiday package based around The Westlander one day, and I’m sure many pensioners and seniors would take it at least once. As for it becoming a common commuter train again – I doubt it, even though the train fare is significantly cheaper than air. If you had a business reason to go to Charleville, you would probably be interested in getting in, and getting out.
      Having said all that, I’m taking a deeper look at it as a short break 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh that’s very impressive to be bitten badly and not take a major fear into adult life. It’s been my experience that the biggest dog in our family, a very big, black labradoodle, was by far the most gentle. The most snappy and dodgy was my late mother’s red toy poodle – a very naughty boy.

        I see today that faux clown also known as our Prime Minister has just given the go-ahead for a high speed train. Already way, way over budget and the whole scheme even if remotely ‘climate friendly’ (and it isn’t) is 20 years too late. Most commuters don’t need to be commuting faster, but asking why they are commuting in the first place. I often wonder what are all those people sitting in front of large computer screens doing in the City that they couldn’t do these days on the large screens back at home?

        Liked by 1 person

        • I’ve just a had look at clip from parliament when he made the announcement; and the reply from Labour. All those clowns who sit behind the leaders nodding, laughing, etc – honestly, it’s like a fairground show or Christmas panto, don’t you think? Perhaps now you’ve Brexited, the idea is there is spare cash to get the project “back on track” (little pun intended). I note Boris is addicted to saying “get it done”, our PM says “how good is . . . (insert item of the moment). Lots of words, little meaning.

          Liked by 1 person

          • We over here are long exasperated by the yah boo politics of Westminster, but can’t see it changing with the present lot. And, we too are enduring that world where the political soundbite of the moment is endlessly repeated – just boring. They think the populace are stupid. I guess these elite politicians are all hoping that their super-rich pals are going to take them with them when they all decamp to Mars! Here’s a link to a short piece I recently came across that’s quite the eyeopener (only a 9 min read or short 11 audio depending on your preference).



          • We over here are long exasperated by yah boo politics at Westminster, but can’t see it changing with the present lot. And, we too are enduring that world where the political soundbite of the moment is endlessly repeated – all so boring. They think the populace are stupid. I guess these elite politicians are all hoping that their super-rich pals are going to take them with them when they all decamp to Mars! Here’s a link to a short piece I recently came across that’s quite the eyeopener (only a 9 min read or short 11 audio depending on your preference).


            Liked by 1 person

          • It’s unbelievable isn’t it. I’d like to think it was all myth, but my ex-husband has just spent a week chaperoning a member of the 1% round UK and he says they are totally and utterly detached from the reality of ordinary people – and my ex is no bleeding heart liberal either I can tell you.

            Liked by 1 person

  3. Lovely to look at ‘times gone by’. Some would say the ‘good times’! Thanks Gwen for an informative blog. Warwick, of course in the UK being Rob’s stomping ground.


    • I’m sure those cafe ladies were glad of the job, but they wouldn’t have been earning much, remembering it was a time when women were routinely paid 30% less than men, even if they did the identical job. “The good old days”, indeed.

      I still have Warwick (Qld) on my “to visit” list, xx


  4. Love the post. Thank you, Gwen. I guess that is what I pictured Australia to look like. And the rose garden. I am so happy to hear they are developing new roses especially for Australia. There was a time, when my knees were good, I was into roses big. I had over a hundred bushes of all types. I miss them but roses demand so much work.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I read somewhere recently that you need to allow some hours a week to tend a home rose garden. Definitely a labour of love. Hopefully next month I will blog on our next road trip – which will include the Begonia festival in Ballarat Vic.

      I remember commenting to you recently that only heavy rain would extinguish our fires. Well – over this last week we have had a torrent, coupled with wild winds. Several of our apartments leaked, including ours, with part of our carpet being lifted for drying out.
      The rain has completely extinguished some fires. One blaze burnt for 74 days across 499,621 hectares. There are still around 30 fires burning in the state, because smouldering tree trunks are a bit like coal burning in a grate – but as far as I know, all are “under control”. Instead, several communities received instructions to evacuate on account of flooding.
      Ya gotta love Austraya.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I wouldn’t mind hanging out at the station – so quaint! I think it’s great that the Homestead is being restored, we all need our history (whether we believe it or not). Thank you for taking me on the tour, Gwen. Always a pleasure.

    Liked by 1 person

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