Kilkivan Police Station


This blog has been used by kind permission from the Queensland Police Museum

FROM the VAULT – Kilkivan Police Station
QPS Media on May 6, 2014 @ 11:00am

In 1867 the Commissioner of Police reported, ‘the opening up of the extensive gold field close to the port of Maryborough will, I expect, give the police some work before the close of the present year’. On 28 January 1868, a gold escort was established between Gympie and Maryborough. It ran regularly once a fortnight, and then changed to monthly in 1869. In the latter part of 1868 Kilkivan station was opened.

Kilkivan first appears in a report showing the strength and disposition of the Queensland Police Force as at 1 May 1869. The station had an Acting Sergeant and three Constables. In 1878, Kilkivan, reappears in the Queensland Police Gazette as a one man station, with Constable Patrick Power as the officer in charge, and appointed as an Inspector of Slaughter-houses. In 1883 tenders were called for the erection of a Court House, Police Quarters and Lock-up. The building was completed in November of the same year at a total cost of ₤748 10s. It consisted of the court house, two bedrooms, sitting room, kitchen, verandahs, and two cells. It was a wooden building with an iron roof. Outbuildings included stalls and a forage room. The three acres of land were reserved for police purposes on 23 February 1886.
In July 1906, an area of two acres was reserved for police purposes. It consisted of eight allotments with James and Bligh Streets defining two of its boundaries. The Court House and Police Barrack building were removed from their position next to the Post and Telegraph Reserve, and situated on the new site in close proximity to the railway station. Two cells were erected in a separate building, and the old cells within the barrack building were converted for other purposes.

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Constable James Tobin holding Certificate of Merit of the Royal Humane Society of Australia, presented October 1921. Cropped Image No. PM0563 courtesy of the Queensland Police Museum.

In August 1921 Kilkivan Police Station Constable James Tobin rescued a 13 year old boy from a disused well in the area containing eight feet of water, and with foul air. The boy was playing with friends when he fell down the well, almost 50 feet deep. Constable Tobin descended via the dilapidated windlass, tied the boy to his own body and they were both hauled to the surface. The Constable was awarded the Royal Humane Society’s Certificate of Merit for his brave acts.

In January 1948 Kilkivan station received their first bicycle, a new Ashby, No. QP49. The troop horse ‘Barambah’ although in good condition and serviceable was used as a saddle horse only. The officer at Kilkivan used his privately owned motor vehicle for Departmental purposes, and received a monthly cash allowance for petrol and oil. In March 1961 Kilkivan police station received a Ford Falcon sedan as its first departmental motor vehicle.

The police buildings were beginning to show their age, and in 1960 another site on the corner of Rose and Hall Streets was found to be suitable for the erection of new buildings. The new police station and detached residence were completed, and occupied in December 1961. The residence was constructed of chamfer boards with a galvanised iron roof. The police office and Court House with attached car port were constructed of fibro walls, and iron roof. The new separate cell block was built of hardwood weatherboards with an iron roof. Towards the end of 1962 town water was connected to the buildings.


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Kilkivan Police Station, 1932. Image No. PM1645 courtesy of the Queensland Police Museum.

In 1973 traffic enforcement was carried out in conjunction with the Gympie Police Station and with the use of a radar unit. Since 1883, and for approximately 100 years, the officer in charge of Kilkivan station has also performed duties as an official of the Court of Petty Sessions, and work on behalf of other government departments. These extra responsibilities came in addition to regular policing duties, and in fact hampered police efforts to patrol the district effectively. In 1973, 85% of the work carried out at the station was as Clerk of the Court. Since 2003 Kilkivan has been a two person station policing around 500 residents in the local shire.


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This information has been supplied by the Queensland Police Museum from the best resources available at the time of writing.

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