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Home > Travelogues > 2009 Travelogues Index > Injune and Roma
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The small and neat town of Injune has wide streets and lovely gardens, with a historic buildings walk in the Station Street, where the railway station used to be.  The railway used to run through land where the Injune Caravan Park we stayed at is located.   

 

The 1940s weatherboard buildings in and adjacent to Station Street include the former Post Office, National Bank and Hotel.  Current businesses are a block away on the street where the highway goes through the town. 

 

 

 

 

Parks and gardens include those around the sports centre and Youth Centre where we found this Emu. 

At a time when schools in small towns are closing in favour of transporting students to larger towns, and there is a small school at Injune, we were very surprised to find a rural based primary school Bymount East, thirty kilometres south of Injune. 

Across the road is Henrick’s Park, a community project developed by artists from the Injune district on land donated to the Injune community by the Henricks Family. 

Visiting Injune, then Roma with the Big Rig centre and the largest cattle selling centre in Australia

Cattle coming in to the saleyards at Roma, ready for the next day's sale.
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In 1900 in the search for water on Roma’s Hospital Hill yielded a big surprise when from a depth of 1,122 metres when water and gas gushed out.  This was the first discovery of natural gas in Australia.  At first the gas discovery was not welcomed as they wanted water and were not set up for a gas discovery. 

 

In 1906 the gas was used to provide lighting in Roma, but this experiment lasted only ten days.  During the 1920s and 1930s gas prospecting and production took place. 

 

In 1961, the Powerhouse at Roma became Australia’s first industrial natural gas consumer, followed by the hospital in 1964.

Beam type oil pump.  This pump was manufactured by Thomassen De Steel in the Netherlands on 1953.  It was originally used by the Dutch Shell Oil Company for their operations in South East Asia.

 

In 1966 the pump was purchased by Mines Administration Pty ltd to pump oil from a depth of 1,220 metres from their Maffra No 2 Well 18 kilometres south of Roma.  It was last used at Hollyrood No 4 Well 25 kilometres south of Roma in December 1992. 

During the 1950s and 1960s, better technology resulting in a resurgence of oil discoveries in the area, and some 200 kilometres away at Moonie. 

The Roma Visitor Centre at Big Rig displays the history of gas discoveries and production in the Roma area together with with videos giving a wider view of Australia’s natural gas industry. 

 

From 1926 to 1931 Roma experienced an “Oil Rush” with claims that it was the purest oil in the world, which was demonstrated when oil drawn was pumped directly into the Minister for mines car.  It commenced with strong trading on the Stock Exchange, and 1931 there were 29 wells in the Roma region, however soon after that, low levels of production caused the industry to collapse.

 

The EMSCO Rig.  Dominating the skyline, this big rig is 41.5 metres high. 

 

Between 1929 and 1941, the steam operated rotary drill was used to drill four holes within sixteen kilometres of Roma, but none of these yielded commercial quantities of oil or gas. 

 

Left standing in a paddock, in 1990 the Roma Apex Club with assistance from Telecom, Roma Town Council and volunteers relocated the rig to its present site. 

Slab Hut: Built in 1893, this well constructed and preserved slab hut was completely hand built from local timber to house a family of twelve.  It is now situated just outside the Big Rig centre.

The Halliburton cement truck is a Kenworth S500 built in 1983 with the pumps and assembly built at Halliburton's plant in Oklahoma USA. 

 

This unit, with its twin cement pumps, was primarily used for cementing casings in oil and gas wells. 

John and Harriet Keegan had nine children

John Keegan built this slab hut on pastoral land in 1893 with rough hewn local White Cypress Pine.  The original box tree bark roof was replaced with corrugated iron a year later. 

Moving on, we set up for the night at the Yuleba free campground Judd's Lagoon

Flowline devices:  This has been called The Christmas Tree.  Comprising control valves, pressure gauges and chokes, it was used to control the flow of oil and gas from the well. 

 

Roma Saleyards:  With up to 12,000 head of cattle at a sale, Roma saleyards is the largest cattle selling centre in Australia. Sales are held on Tuesdays (store cattle) and on Thursdays (fat cattle), with special sales being held at other times. 

 

There are computerised weighing facilities so all trade animals are weighed before auction. 

 

We were lucky to see cattle being unloaded and yarded ready for the following day’s sale