"Mary Kathleen Township" Mount Isa Off The Beaten Path Tip by eviltooth

Mount Isa Off The Beaten Path: 2 reviews and 2 photos

  Road to Mary Kathleen
by eviltooth

Mary Kathleen was initially surveyed by a mining company to provide accommodation and amenities to the workers of the nearby uranium mine. The uranium deposit was discovered by Clem Walton and Norm McConarchy in 1954 and was named "Mary Kathleen" after McConarchy's wife. The company provided the entire infrastructure including the town, a dam on the nearby Corella River (now known as Clem Walton Park), open-cut mine and treatment plant. The town enjoyed prosperity between 1956 and 1963 until it was placed in mothballs. In 1974, the mine was reopened until 1984, when due to the federal Labour government's "three mines" policy which confined Australia's uranium production to the three sites already being mined: Ranger, Nabarlek and Olympic Dam, Mary Kathleen was closed. The entire town infrastructure, including houses, went to public auction. Today no buildings remain, but the ghost town like atmosphere makes one wonder what this fluorishing community would have been like.

The access toad into the town is all sealed but is in a bad state of disrepair, beware of some very large potholes and pavement failure areas.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Oct 30, 2004
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