April 13, 2021

Suburb Profile: Cambooya

About 20km south of Toowoomba you’ll find a historic little place by the name of Cambooya.

As the beating heart of Steele Rudd country, people flock to this tidy rural town to take in its history, enjoy a beer at the still-standing 1900s pub on the main strip, and even find a home that offers the country lifestyle they’ve always dreamt of, with all the conveniences of Toowoomba City right nearby.

A little history

The area around Cambooya was originally settled by Arthur Hodgson in 1840 as a pastoral run, named Eton Vale at the time. Three years later, Eton Vale was reserved by the Commissioner for Crown Lands, Christopher Rolleston, for a township, courthouse and other administrative amenities. Rolleston had big plans for a township.

While his vision of a township never got off the ground, Cambooya soon became the site of a railway station, and over subsequent decades its main industry was the rail goods yard. Slowly but surely, new buildings were erected – a primary school, two hotels, multiple churches, a school of arts, two banks and a variety of shopfronts – and a community was born.

Literary fans will perhaps know Cambooya best for being the place where author Steele Rudd spent the majority of his childhood, with the surrounding landscapes supposedly playing a major influence on his short stories that would be turned into On Our Selection in 1899 – later adapted into the satirical radio series Dad and Dave.

The name

Cambooya was named in the 1840s by Rolleston, when he earmarked the land for a township. The name itself was drawn from the Aboriginal word ‘yambuya’, which refers to tubers growing in a water hole.

What are the most popular landmarks?

People travel from far and wide to visit the historic pub right in the middle of town. Established in 1902 as the Cambooya Railway Hotel, today it’s called the Bull and Barley Inn and it’s been lovingly restored to display the old-world charm of the 1900s – including memorabilia and original photographs adorning its walls, and the original cedar chiller box still in use.

Hop on over to nearby Greenmount and stop off for a quick history lesson at the replica of Steele Rudd’s modest hut. Close by, the Soldiers’ Memorial Hall commemorates those who served in World War I and provides more insight into the area’s long history.

While the mostly year-round dry weather renders much of the surrounding grasslands a pale brown rather than lush green, there’s still plenty of parks to explore in Cambooya. Memorial Park is the most popular, being in the centre of town. Both Rolleston Park and Paterson Park abut Hodgson Creek, while Lucy Street Park has tennis facilities and a skate park.

Does Cambooya have a good lifestyle?

Cambooya is well-loved for its slower pace of life and tight-knit community, so it’s just as welcoming for young families as it is for professionals or retirees looking for a more laid-back lifestyle. It has most of the essential amenities right in the middle of town, but Toowoomba is also a short drive away so you’ll never be far from what you need.

According to data from the 2016 Census, almost 1,600 people live in Cambooya.

What schools are nearby?

Back in the early 1880s, the very first public school opened in Cambooya. And it’s stayed that way ever since! Cambooya State School takes enrolments from Prep through to Grade 6, and educates approximately 100 children from the local area.

For high schools, you can head into Toowoomba and find the government public schools Centenary Heights State High School and Harristown State High School, both about a 20-minute drive from Cambooya. Alternatively, Pittsworth State High School to the west is home to lots of local families from the townships surrounding Toowoomba – it’s about a 25-minute drive from Cambooya.

What’s the Cambooya property market like?

According to the latest data, the median house price in Cambooya is $329,500, rising to $337,500 for larger four-bedroom homes. Renters can expect to pay an average of $340 per week for a house and $275 per week for a unit.

While Cambooya is certainly considered country living, it’s still just a short 20-minute drive into Toowoomba, which is perhaps why so many people (449 visits per property, on average) are looking further afield than the typical Garden City suburbs.

Exceptional rural living in Cambooya

Country living is appealing for more and more homebuyers, and Cambooya provides the best of everything: a laid-back community lifestyle, easy access to amenities, and just a short drive from bustling Toowoomba. Contact an experienced local agent today to find your rural paradise in Cambooya.

Article by Melita Bell

Melita Bell is a fully licensed real estate agent who has a reputation for delivering exceptional results that consistently exceed her clients’ expectations. Encompassing over ten years of real estate experience, Melita Bell’s background inclu… View profile

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