The Atherton Tablelands’ rich history is a growing drawcard for visitors, thanks to events like Sunday’s VP – Victory in the Pacific – Day at Rocky Creek War Memorial Park.
Tropical Tablelands Tourism (TTT) chairman Michael Trout said August 14 marked the 71st anniversary of VP Day, which was effectively the end of World War II for Australians. “Around 100,000 troops were stationed on the Tablelands during WWII,” Mr Trout said. “They were sent here for training and rehabilitation and were camped from Kuranda right through to Ravenshoe and from Herberton to Kairi. The threat of invasion by the enemy was very real.”
Rocky Creek War Memorial Park, on the Kennedy Highway near Tolga, is the main hub for celebrations every VP Day.
It was the site of the largest field hospital complex in the southern hemisphere and 60,000 patients were reportedly treated there during WWII.
A memorial service, aircraft flyover and displays will commemorate the event on Sunday from noon till 3pm. Entry is free.
Mr Trout said farmers, miners and explorers, as well as soldiers, all played significant roles in settling and shaping the Atherton Tablelands.
“TTT has created a heritage trail, A Step Back In Time, that gives an overview of places of historical interest for self-drive visitors and locals including our World War II history,” he said.
“Other places include Chillagoe with its copper smelters, the Mareeba Heritage Centre, which showcases Aboriginal history and early settlement of the Tablelands, the century-old Hou Wang Chinese Temple near Atherton and Yungaburra with its heritage-listed buildings.
“Our mining history is also recognised at the Herberton Mining Museum and the Historic Village Herberton, while our links to the dairy and timber industries can be seen at the Malanda Dairy Centre and Ravenshoe Visitor Centre.
Check out the Tropical Tablelands Tourism website www.athertontablelands.com.au for details and a map of the pioneer heritage trail, A Step Back In Time.
Posted by Bronwyn under Tablelands News | Posted on 10th Aug 2016