- Category: Economy
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Toowoomba City Council has three sister city relationships - Takatsuki, Japan; Paju, South Korea; and Wanganui, New Zealand. These relationships have been established to enhance cultural exchange as well as promote business opportunities.
As a result of these relationships, Toowoomba hosts several delegations throughout the year. By bringing school students, business people and international visitors to the city, our community is much richer for the experience.
As part of our relationship with Takatsuki, each year Toowoomba selects six young graduates eager for the opportunity to live and work as Assistant English Teachers in our Japanese Sister City.
Wanganui, also spelled Whanganui, is an urban area and district on the west coast of the North Island of New Zealand. It is part of the Manawatu-Wanganui region. The friendship with the two cities was signed in 1981.
Takatsuki (高槻市 Takatsuki-shi) is a city located in Osaka, Japan.
As of 2010, the city has an estimated population of 353,881 and the density of 3,360 persons per km². The total area is 105.31 km².
The city was founded on January 1, 1943 and is located almost directly between Kyoto and Osaka. Due to the convenience of being 13–15 minutes away from Kyoto and Osaka by train respectively, the city has developed exponentially during the last 20 years. It is a commuter town, with people commuting to both Kyoto and Osaka. It has been a sister city with Toowoomba Council since 1991.
Paju is a city in Gyeonggi Province, South Korea. Paju was made a city in 1997; it had previously been a county (gun).
The city is located just south of Panmunjeom on the 38th parallel. To defend the Korean capital, Seoul, many US and Korean army bases are set up in the city. In 2002, the northernmost Korean railway station, Dorasan, was opened. North Korean territory and Kaesong City can be seen from Mount Dora in the city. This city also includes such landmarks like the DMZ, the Jayuro Road of Freedom, the Tongilro Road of Unification or National Road No. 1. It is the city where the movie was taken by its name, starring by Lee Sun Gyun and Seo Woo. Paju has been a sister city with Toowoomba Council since 2002.
- Category: Landmarks
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The Toowoomba City Hall is the seat of the City Council of Toowoomba, Queensland , Australia. It is located on the 153 Herries Street and on 543 Ruthven Street. The building is the location for the proclamation that Toowoomba was a city and was the first purpose built city hall ever constructed in Queensland.
Tenders were called for the construction of a town hall in 1861. It was built by Frederick Stein in 1862 in James Street. The first City Hall was a timber building, which was demolished and replaced in 1881 by a brick building. The School of Arts in Ruthven Street was destroyed by fire in July 1898. The local Council agreed that new municipal buildings and a Town Hall should be built on the place of the School of Arts which had been destroyed that year, pending the sale of the old Town Hall to the Roman Catholic Church for £ 2,000.
The new building was designed by the Brisbane architect Willoughby Powell. In 1900 was inaugurated the present Town Hall at a cost of £ 10,000. The exterior of the building was restored to its original state in 1997. It now houses a regional art gallery and theatre.
The photo of the city hall above was taken in 1915.
- Category: People
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William Henry Groom (9 March 1833 – 8 August 1901) was a publican, newspaper proprietor, and member of the Parliament of Queensland and the Parliament of Australia.
Groom was born at Plymouth, England, son of Thomas Groom, cordwainer, and his wife Maria, née Harkcom. Groom was educated at St Andrew's College, Plymouth and apprenticed to a baker. He was transported from England to Australia as a convict in 1846 for seven years, having been convicted of embezzlement, aged just 13. He was eventually released, subsequently convicted again of a similar offence and served gaol time in the goldfields in what would later be the colony of Victoria. After he was again released, Groom eventually found himself on the Darling Downs in Queensland, where despite whispers about his chequered past, he became one of the leading members of society.
In 1858 Groom became associated with Toowoomba in connection with his activities and as an auctioneer.
Groom was proprietor of The Chronicle (Toowoomba) newspaper and one of the founders of the Toowoomba Permanent Building Society (later Heritage Building Society). He was also involved in the creation of the Toowoomba Racecourse Clifford Park, the School of Arts and many other establishments.
Groom served as a Toowoomba Alderman from 1861–1901, as well as the town's inaugural mayor in 1861. He went on to serve three consecutive terms as Mayor, and was re-elected to the position again in 1864, 1867, 1883 and 1884. During his first term as Mayor he successfully led his council to petition the colonial government for land for a town hall, a municipal market and the original site for Queens Park.
In 1862 Groom was elected to represent the municipality in the Queensland Colonial Government, with a majority of 21 votes. He served as parliamentary speaker from 1883 to 1888
Groom played a major role in the growth of Toowoomba by securing funding for bridges and arterial roads, the establishment of the General Hospital (now Queensland Health's Toowoomba Base Hospital) and Willowburn Hospital (now Baillie Henderson Hospital).
Groom was elected as a Protectionist to the Darling Downs electorate at the inaugural Australian federal election in 1901, becoming the only transported convict to ever sit as a member of the Australian Parliament. Unfortunately, he was given little time to enjoy the crowning glory of his political career, as he died on 8 August of the same year at the first Commonwealth Parliament meeting in Melbourne. He died of a combination of bronchial catarrh and heart failure. Groom was the first serving member of the Australian Parliament to die. (Sir James Dickson, Minister for Defence, had died in January, but this was before the first parliament had been elected.)
William Henry Groom was succeeded as the member for Darling Downs by his third son Littleton Groom, who won the seat in Australia's first federal by-election and later became Speaker of the House of Representatives.
William Henry Groom was also the father of Queensland State parliamentarian (MLA) Henry Groom.