Bold plan for new ‘RV Stop’ leaves community divided

Published: April 20, 2021
Maryvale RV stop

A plan to create a short-term RV camping area has left yet another regional community deeply divided.

In a debate that is being played out in town after town across the country, some residents of Maryvale in Queensland can see the economic benefits of attracting grey nomads and other travellers, while others worry it will destroy the area’s ‘quaint’ character.

The Maryvale Progress Association (MPA) has submitted a petition to the Southern Downs Regional Council expressing strong support for a 72-hour RV stopover park and dump point at the Railway Reserve.

The Toowoomba Chronicle reports that MPA secretary, Simon Ellery, believes the bold new project would encourage visitors to Maryvale and allow them to enjoy the Railway Reserve.

While the petition was signed by more than 100 residents and visitors. However, other residents of the township – which has  population of around 300 –  say the project would detract from the ‘quaint’ township, and they propose the funds be used on essential infrastructure in the community.

According to the Chronicle, Mayor Vic Pennisi said the council recognised there were two sides to the story and would review the proposal to ensure their decision suited the majority of residents.

“Council is keen to work with individual communities to help them their shape and enrich their urban areas and Maryvale is home to a proud and passionate community who treasure where they live,” he said. “Council worked closely in 2018 with the Maryvale community on its Urban Design Framework, and reviewing the RV proposal is another layer of the project.

Councillor Stephen Tancred supports the RV area idea, and said the number of people who signed the petition signalled enough ‘merit and support’ to investigate the proposal further.

“This petition has well over 100, maybe 200 signatures and I note that most of them live at Maryvale or Goomburra or somewhere fairly close,” he said. “As petitions go, it seems to carry a fair bit of weight and I can commend the residents of Maryvale for communicating with us in this way.”

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Robyn Garland
9 months ago

To the Residents and show owners of Maryvale. Please look at a little ‘quaint’ town in NSW called Bulahdelah. It has thrived since they opened up the Lions free camp in town. Business has boomed. Yes Bulahdelah has more than 300 people but a similar town.

William Frost
8 months ago
Reply to  Robyn Garland

Not quaint – better described as bordering derelict – needs a shot in the arm of some description before it dies altogether. thru traffic and stayers will need a sanga shop and coffee . . . There’s a couple of jobs right away!

1 month ago
Reply to  Robyn Garland

Council has closed the park now. New caravan Park has been built so it’s the only place in town. So disappointed in Council.

9 months ago

From a traveller perspective what a great idea
We use free or low cost campsites to help us stay on the road longer and spend money in these towns
Kimba SA is a great example of such campsites

Caron Horton
9 months ago

What a strange article, as there isnt any business in Maryvale that would benefit from this proposal.
There is already a great camp out the back of the pub, which is across the toad from the railway reserve

9 months ago

I wonder how the proposal can damage the quaint character? Its not my “backyard” so I wouldn’t like to see a proposal forced on residents but I would have thought it sounds like a good idea…I’d for one would like to stay over on our frequent trips out west….

Rick Avey
9 months ago

Other than the Pub,where else is there to spend money in Maryvale?
If they don`t want it,don`t force it on them.

8 months ago
Reply to  Rick Avey

Exactly !!!

Ric Moffet
9 months ago

I lived there for 2 years, and the pub, was and is the only business. Their was a servo, on the main road, but it must have closed. It was a quaint town, but their is nothing there other than the pub. It is not far from the mountain range, or Warwick, so it would be better if they just had a dump point there, as those are few and far between. The pub as free camping so just leave it to them to look after the travellers.

Barry moore
8 months ago

Maryvale is a nice little place and we go there often but as many have said, what businesses could possibly benefit from any increase in RV public? (except the pub!) there’s none to speak of.

But our take on it that if there were more visitors then someone might well open a nice cafe or a small grocery shop which would be of great benefit one would think to the locals.

Might even see the slightly out of the way but ad Hoc almost defunct shop already in existence, (on Cunningham H’way) Re- open in a serious way, and make a go of it for them and locals.

More visitors might give opportunity for locals (boutique printers, and artisans, painters etc whom I know Exist there already, to open a small Art gallery, or handicrafts shop- even one guy I know who has the most comprehensive collection of cameras, movie equipment and recording equipment etc one could find. All unseen and in his home.
An eclectic museum of sorts unseen anywhere in mainstream places.

We say to Warwick Council, go for it. It’s a goer!

8 months ago

I live in Maryvale and am against a RV park and regards to a dump point why can’t one be placed at driver reviver just up the road on the highway that will benefit all travellers passing through. We had RVs here not so long ago and a resident saw a man walk out and start peeing in plain sight right across from a children’s playground. We don’t have business to really benefit from travellers. Who is doing the Clean up after visitors leave? I am against it completely

8 months ago
Reply to  Michelle

Respectable Grey Nomads pick up after themselves. Also, probably a minority of travellers would “pee” in public, near a playground. We have been free camping for many years, and rarely seen this much disrespect. We spend money in hosting towns.

8 months ago
Reply to  Michelle

If they don’t want our money then I for one will happily spend it elsewhere.

We are full time on the road and frequently see how these initiatives have turned a rural town around.

Len Sorrell
8 months ago


Gerald Hopgood
8 months ago

If the pub is the only business in town. How is it doing? Would the publican appreciate an extra maybe, 5 or 10 customers a day? If we say quaint tittle town, does this mean that it is dead to the world with no future? I am sure there are many other areas in the vicinity that would benefit from extra patronage. The reserve proposal looks great. why not enjoy it.

Lorraine Holloway
8 months ago
Reply to  Gerald Hopgood

We called into this pub a few years back. In search of a coffee. “Na mate, only sell grog” They missed out, we went elsewhere.

8 months ago

Think Michelle has hit the nail fair and square.
When there are lazy buggers about who have no respect, one easily understands why the countryside is becoming filthy and places being closed up.

8 months ago

I live in Maryvale and am against an RV Park of any kind. People bought property in this area for a quiet lifestyle out in the country. Some say there is economic benefit to the area but the only place to benefit would be the pub and I don’t see why residents should have to sacrifice their lifestyle to increase a business owner’s profits at the end of the day. The markets are supported by traffic regardless. The minority may spoli it for others when ferals pee outside in plain view of everyone, but that’s the way things go. Not everyone in the area is comfortable with speaking out against the RV park, so pls don’t assume that the majority want this increase in traffic. Some prefer it to stay just the way it is.

8 months ago

You say why increase the profit for the pub. What wonderful community spirit. Just maybe if the pub doesn’t get a hand just maybe it wont be there in the future for anybody to enjoy. Then you can have that ideal quiet paradise you so cherish. Only thing is. No one will go there. Buy the way, does the pub sponsor town events, sporting clubs? I bet the nay sayers don’t contribute to the community in any way.

Pauline Kapral
8 months ago

Check out Woodenbong NSW put in a free camp there charging $10/night. Very happy with it. Community of 300 but no jobs for the young ones so they are all moving. Need to keep the young ones employed. Dont be selfish. Grey Nomads have vans worth more than some of their houses. Get with it people.

8 months ago

Maryvale is a ghost town now, not quaint as some say. Within a few years it will be absolutely nothing. Not even a pub. I would hate to live in a community that is so small and narrow minded. Beautiful location but no one from outside is allowed to breath air there.


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