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Former Childers winery set for exciting makeover

Childers Winery
A former exotic fruit winery on Goodwood Road near Childers is the subject of a development application lodged with Council.

The conversion of a former exotic fruit winery into a winery, bar and function venue will add a further string to the bow of Childers visitor attractions, according to Childers Chamber of Commerce president Teena Mammino.

Council has received a development application seeking a material change of use (MCU) of the former Ohana Winery on Goodwood Road.

The application seeks to build on the existing winery characteristics of the 4.7-hectare site which is populated with numerous exotic fruit trees.

Childers Winery
Childers Chamber of Commerce president Teena Mammino.

Ms Mammino said the proposal was an exciting one for Childers and the winery aspect would complement three other such ventures locally.

“Wine trails are a great initiative and a niche market that is very appealing to many visitors,” she said.

“For Childers to boast four such venues within easy reach of the town area is an outstanding promotional opportunity.”

The new winery, to be called The Rusty Gate Grove Bar and Winery, is the initiative of local businessman Michael Vella and Julie-Anne Fordham trading as MJV Property Group.

The MCU lodged on behalf of the applicants by town planners Insite SJC, contends that the facilities component is anticipated to meet a demand for functions such as weddings or business events.

The winery and bar would cater to a demand for wine tastings, functions and social gatherings, the report stated.

Ms Mammino said it was pleasing to see expansion in a wide range of business avenues despite the spectre of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“People are simply getting on with growing business opportunities that create traffic to our community and, importantly, are job-generating enterprises.”

Divisional representative Cr Bill Trevor said the proposal was indicative of the strong development growth within the Childers area.

“This development is on one of the most highly trafficked roads between Childers and Bundaberg and the opportunities for the venture, both from a local and tourist-based perspective, are obvious.”

“Council had several significant incentive programs in place for anyone wishing to explore development opportunities across business, agriculture or tourism sectors,” said Cr Trevor.

“Simply visit the website or phone 1300 883 699 to speak with Council representatives in the planning and development area.”

He said the application is currently under consideration by Council.