Regional town ‘resurgence’

There are many signs of resurgence in the Mount Burr township according to its general store owner Rosie Copelin. She said the local school enrolments were growing, businesses were expanding and house prices were rising.

It is now 20 years since production ceased at the Mount Burr Mill and 40 jobs were lost. The mill has not operated since December 2000 when it was closed at short notice by its New Zealand owners Carter Holt Harvey (CHH).

Ms Copelin said people were being attracted to Mount Burr because of the strong community spirit. “It has got a lot to offer and is a nice place to be,” Ms Copelin said. “It has always had a strong sporting base and it has a good school and kindy. You can come to Mount Burr and see lots of butterflies as well as see and hear the kookaburras.

“People have even told us they have seen the rare red-tailed black cockatoos, but we have not seen any. “When my husband George and I took over the store two and a half years ago there were houses in Mount Burr selling for only $40,000.

“The last house for sale in Mount Burr was only on the market one day and sold for $178,000. “There is nothing to buy or rent at the moment and houses are turning over quickly.” In the commercial world, there are two Mount Burr properties acting as Air BnBs while the adjacent nursery has changed hands.

For their part, the Copelins have upgraded their shop and expanded the range of general and food lines. Hailing from the USA, the American food served up by Mr Copelin is proving to be quite a drawcard.

Special interest groups such as vintage car clubs, cyclists and horse riders make a point of stopping at the Thomas Drive premises. Ms Copelin is pleased the State Government has built a new shed for the Mount Burr CFS while Wattle Range Council is about to seal some of the town’s service roads.

However, she has called on the two tiers of government to help Mount Burr in other ways. She said the public toilets need to be upgraded, an RV Park would be welcomed and a second illuminated bushfire warning sign was required. “We also need signs pointing the way to Mount Burr as Glencoe has lots of them,” she said.

The Mount Burr township is within a decade of marking its centenary and many of the former mill buildings remain.

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