The Leslie Wilson Home, situated at Rowes Bay, Townsville, was opened on 17 December 1946. The Home was run by a committee from the Royal Queensland Bush Children's Health Scheme and provided 6 weeks' accommodation for children from rural areas of Queensland in need of health treatments and recuperation. The Leslie Wilson Home, Townsville closed in June 1994.
The Leslie Wilson Home, Townsville was named after the then Governor of Queensland, Sir Leslie Wilson. The property was donated to the Queensland Bush Children's Health Scheme by the Townsville Rotary Club. The Rotary Club purchased seven military huts which they renovated and furnished to accommodate up to 100 children. The huts were on five acres of land situated 50 metres from the beach.
Each group of children would stay six weeks at the home. Each child was medically examined and if required, received medical and dental treatment free of charge. The Home closed for eight months due to an outbreak of polio and reopened on 27 August 1951.
[Taken from Royal Queensland Bush Children's Health Scheme: The Train is in. Where to now?: 75 years of caring 1935 - 2010 p. 10]
Townsville Home -This property originally purchased in 1946 underwent many changes. Respite care programs were offered at this Home. In 1966, the old wartime buildings were demolished and new blocks added. A swimming pool was also constructed so the children could swim during the hot summer without the problem of stinger bite. The buildings and amenities on this Centre were constantly renovated and updated. A specialist Unit for children with behaviour problems was opened in 1991. This Centre was also closed in 1994 as a result of the Strategic Planning Process which determined that services should be located within rural communities.
The buildings were sold and the premises have now become
the first Queensland Police Service Academy for North Queensland.
Sources used to compile this entry: '80 years of BUSHkids', in Timeline 1935-2015, BUSHkids, 2015, http://bushkids.org.au/1935timeline2015/files/assets/basic-html/page-1.html; Royal Queenland Bush Children's Health Scheme, Royal Queenland Bush Children's Health Scheme: The Train is in. Where to now?: 75 years of caring 1935 - 2010, Brisbane, 2011.
Prepared by: Lee Butterworth
Created: 29 April 2013, Last modified: 10 January 2018