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25 October, 2021

Planes, Trains and Automobiles

Federal Member for Maranoa David Littleproud was on hand in Clifton last week to deliver the good news to Clifton and District Progress Association (CDPA) that the organisation has received a grant of $20,000 to deliver a new destination event: Planes, Trains and Automobiles.


Clifton and District Progress Association’s Railway Station Coordinator Maureen Mitchell, Vice President Vee Cashin and President Amee Hetherington with Member for Maranoa David Littleproud.

President of CDPA Amee Hetherington said without the grant, staging the new event would not have been possible.

Station Coordinator for CDPA Maureen Mitchell, who was instrumental in the grant application process, said a date has not been set for when the event will be held, although people can tentatively expect it to be in July or August next year.

The funding was secured through Round 5 of the  Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF).

Mr Littleproud said the Government’s investment will create economic opportunities not just in town but across the electorate.

“This is a proud day for the region in our fight to make sure we get our fair share,” Mr Littleproud said.

“The Government is backing this project so local people can have a vision for the future, while creating jobs to boost the local economy.

“This project will be aimed at attracting visitors and bringing investment into town. 

“This has the potential to transform Clifton and the surrounding area.”

Mr Littleproud’s visit to Clifton last Tuesday came at the busiest time of the year for CDPA as Country Week preparations were underway.

President of the Progress Association, Amee Hetherington said she wanted to assure people that Country Week is not going to go anywhere, but rather, Planes, Trains and Automobiles will be another event added to the calendar set to boost tourism to
Clifton during winter, a quieter time of the year for tourists.

Using funding from the grant, CDPA will now begin the process of hiring an event coordinator to plan and oversee the event.

CDPA will also begin to facilitate discussions on how planes, trains and automobiles will be integrated into the event.

Clifton Airfield and Darling Downs Sport Aircraft Association will no doubt be integral to the planes aspect of the event, as Southern Downs Steam Railway Association will be for trains.

Automobiles is less obvious, although Mrs Hetherington said she is hoping to incorporate a range of car clubs and similar organisations so that there will be a wide variety of vehicles, from vintage Model T Fords to brand new Mustangs.

Plans are also underway for other Clifton community groups to be involved in all aspects of the event.

Mrs Hetherington said she wished to thank the Toowoomba-based tourism consultancy agency Tilma Group for their assistance in applying for the grant.

Under Round 5 of the BBRF, almost $300 million has been committed to support 295 projects across regional Australia, which will create an estimated 9,900 jobs during the project period.

This latest funding round takes the total support through the BBRF to $1.38 billion across nearly 1,300 projects.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Barnaby Joyce said the Government is focused on ensuring Australia’s regions remain strong.

“Funding for these projects in Maranoa is a testament to the dedication of David Littleproud,” Mr Joyce said.

“Infrastructure upgrades funded in this latest round will ensure our regions remain great places to live and visit, while helping support important regional industries which create jobs.”

Other groups in the region that will receive funding through Round 5 of the Building Better Regions Fund include:

  • Toowoomba Hospital Foundation received $1,166,811 for Darling Downs Health Museum Stage 1 - the project will upgrade the medical superintendent’s house at the Baillie Henderson Hospital into a museum.
  • Toowoomba Regional Council received $3,333,000 for The Great Divide Mountain Bike Destination - The project will create a network of mountain bike trails and associated infrastructure.
  • Warwick Karting Club received $20,250 to upgrade the existing power supply infrastructure.

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