Gnowangerup, Western Australia – new airstrip
Friday 24th September 2010, Gnowangerup’s new airport was officially opened by the Hon. Terry Waldron, MLA. The opening of the totally upgraded airport concluded 4 years of hard work and thousands of dollars contributed to the project by the Plymouth Brethren.
Here is a letter from a very thankful resident of Gnowangerup.
“To whom it may concern
I must commend the Brethren Community of Gnowangerup for their recent upgrading of the Gnowangerup Shire airstrip. Starting with a very short substandard dirt strip the Brethren community of Gnowangerup at their own expense using volunteer labour and equipment have constructed an all weather sealed airport capable of handling up to small passenger jets, complete with radio controlled lighting and a terminal building. This project was initiated, and funded, by the Brethren Community of Gnowangerup with minimal assistance from the Gnowangerup Shire Council and a small grant from the West Australian State Government.
As residents of Gnowangerup and surrounding areas rely heavily on the services of the Royal Flying Doctor Service to transport seriously ill patients to medical facilities in Perth, the whole community will benefit from this facility for years to come. Previously the Royal Flying Doctor Service would only land if weather conditions were favourable necessitating on many occasions for patients to be transported by Ambulance, staffed by volunteers, to the nearest facility some two hours away.
The Brethren Community of Gnowangerup have generously contributed to our small hospital and aged care facilities. With State and Federal funding being steadily withdrawn this has helped keep these services open to the general public.
I am third generation farmer, now retired, who has lived in this area most of my life. We produce grain, wool, fat lambs, however our main enterprise is a Poll Merino Stud (Willemenup) and a Poll Dorset Stud (Curlew Creek). Willemenup is well recognised having exhibited two national champion rams and has sold genetics to all states in Australia and to a number of overseas countries in recent years. My son now manages the business.
Over the years I have been involved with many local organisations including nine years as a Shire Councilor with one term as Shire President. I have been a member of Rotary for over thirty years and have twice served as President.
The people of Gnowangerup and surrounding areas are seriously indebted to the Brethren Community for their foresight and generous contributions.