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 With State and Federal funding being steadily withdrawn this has helped keep these services open to the general public.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.




GNP Airstrip letter – R Garnett



8 thoughts on “Gnowangerup, Western Australia – new airstrip”

  1. peter harvey says:

    The Plymouth Brethren should be congratulated on their fine work – however it is unfortunate that the shire have not taken the landing fees of $20 off the website, as it is a great place for touch and go instruction – also the gate combination is not the CTAF – as it is with all airports.
    Peter Harvey

  2. asha says:

    Thanks to the brethren for initiating this air strip project, and for following through to completion. Great Work!

    Looking forward to visiting the Great Southern soon.
    Hopefully theres a plane service to Gnowangerup by then, and a car hire place there so we can collect a car and take a trip through the spectacular mountain ranges to Albany.
    Oh and a Muzz Buzz, have to have good coffee!!

  3. Ella says:

    Hours and hours of unpaid volunteer labour for this effort.
    The public should be truly grateful for this.
    An enormous challenge for the brethren in Gnowangerup.

    Thank You to All Involved!

  4. Flying Enthusiest says:

    Growing up in remote country regions of Australia,I witnessed first hand how much these small comunities rely on such a service brought to them by aircraft. My father beng one to help start such airstrips in several of these places it is no mean feat to produce such a much needed facility. For the Plymouth Brethren to construct a sealed radiocontrolled 24/7 strip is a massive effort which should be aplauded greatly. What a truly wonderful country we would have if there were more UNSELFISH persons like this in the city and country areas alike. Yet I know this is what Christianity is all about!! It’s a pity the more populated we become, the more isolated and selfish we become in our outlook.
    Keep up the fantastic work you do. God is watching.

  5. Rob says:

    I have visited outback areas in Western Australia, and can therefore appreciate how much this airstrip would mean to a remote community like Gnowangerup.
    The Plymouth Brethren are an asset in many small towns in North America also. Witness their extensive work, on several occasions, to protect Neche ND – a small community on the Canadian border – from flooding.
    Keep up the good work ye Brethren everywhere!

    1. Somebody says:

      we are humbled when we do this work. we will continue to help better other people situtions.

    2. Andy Rich says:

      We are very happy with the finished result and feel we did the Lord’s work.
      we dont want a pat on the back….we need one. lol

  6. Cath says:

    I am so thrilled for the people in Gnowangerup getting the airstrip. We visited the place about 19 years ago and we were shocked that the “airport” was more than non existant. I expect that the new airstrip will also help increase local trade as well as the medical services and people there will begin to feel on the map.

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