By Nicky Way
In 2011, Middlemount celebrated its 30th birthday in bright and shiny style, thanks to Anglo American's efforts to update the town centre and accommodation.
Anglo American’s Metallurgical Coal business owns most of the 700-odd houses in town and rents the accommodation back to employees at subsidised rates.
Anglo American has a number of mines in the area, all located within about 15 minutes from town, while Peabody Energy has operations here too.
There are other businesses in town besides the big mining companies though, such as Boom Logistics, Thiess, Middlemount Tyre and Engineering, Vitronite, Civeo as well as services like Middlemount Rural.
Just outside Middlemount there are cattle and crop farms - but before you get to those you'll see the Motorcross track. The sport is hugely popular in town and lots of events are held there each year. People travel from all over the Central Queensland highlands to compete.
Middlemount is a very social town with heaps of community events. It would have to be said, though, that the highlight of the social calendar is the Middlemount Races held in August, when the whole town frocks up for a great day out.
Middlemount is 250km from the coastal town of Mackay and 270km from Rockhampton. Tieri and Dysart are the closest towns, 55km and 66km away respectively.
Rumour has it that when Anglo Amercian and MIM (now Glencore) were setting up their mines in the region, they couldn't decide where to build the town so they built two, Tieri and Middlemount, and that’s why the two towns are so close together.
Middlemount offers education services for all ages from birth until Year 12. For the littlies there's Middlemount C&K (they also offer before and after school care). For mums who want to meet others and be with their children, there's also playgroup two days a week.
There are good medical facilities including the Qld Community Health Centre (QCHC), a medical and physiotherapy practice, a dentist and a pharmacy. Specialists from the coast also visit the QCHC from time to time. The nearest hospital is in Dysart.
To catch a plane you need to get to Emerald, 145km away. You can also catch a bus or train from there.
There are enough shops to buy the essentials, as well as a few specialty shops. There's an IGA, butcher, café, several hairdressers and beauty places, post office, ANZ Bank, florist, ladies wear, surf wear, newsagency, jeweller, electrical, tax agent, takeaway shop, several restaurants as well as a golf club, hotel and various sporting clubs including; dancing, rugby league, swimming, gym.
The Isaac Regional Council looks after the library, parks, gardens, water, sewage, waste management and roads for the town.
But if all that's not enough, you can join the many locals who get their daily exercise from a very steep stroll up Blue Mountain, the town's only tourist attraction. While you're there you can put a steak on the barbie and enjoy the 360 degree view of the surrounds. It's quite impressive.
"Middlemount, like every town, is what you make of it. It has just as much to offer as any other small mining town and if given the opportunity can become a place to call home. Being a long-term resident, I like that Middlemount can offer my young family a safe, welcoming and comfortable environment without having to miss out on anything. It is a great place for families and couples to base themselves with great facilities and services available in town or close by at Emerald, Mackay or Rockhampton. We have great medical facilities such as the doctors, dentist and community health centre which provide quality care, as well as our education services with a P-12 community school, kindergarten and child care centre. Middlemount has a well-equipped shopping centre and a great council building with all major Qld Government services. We have excellent sporting clubs here as well for both adults and children and really well looked after facilities.
- Trudi Hansell, married mother of one
Ever lived in Middlemount? Tell the world...