Veil drops on new community space for Dalby

Published on 23 August 2023

Mary's Opening Event

The spirit of the Western Downs community and 'the people that make it' are set to reinvigorate the Dalby CBD, with works to create a new public space now complete. 

Western Downs Regional Council partnered with the Queensland Government's Works 4 Queensland programme to deliver 'Mary's Place', which is situated at 120 Cunningham Street, Dalby.  

Mayor Paul McVeigh said the completion and public opening of Mary's Place was a significant milestone for the region. 

“This new space is designed to bring the ‘wow’ factor to the Dalby CBD, offering a fresh and inviting space for residents and visitors to meet and connect,” Cr McVeigh said.  

“Designed by renowned architect Blight Rayner and constructed by local contractor New State Builders, Mary’s Place features vibrant arbours, plants, shrubs, and trees, a range of seating, tables, colourful lighting, and space for food trucks and market stalls.  

“The site also features outdoor projector screens which could be used for a variety of activities such as outdoor movies, regional promotion, digital art, and community events.  

Mayor McVeigh said one of the most special elements of Mary’s Place was the tribute to the individual from whom the space takes its name. 

“Our region prides itself on its rich history and the people that have made our community what it is today, and Mary Barry was certainly someone who personified community spirit and made Dalby what it is today,” he said.  

“Through the delivery of this project we have been uncovering so many wonderful anecdotes about Mary and the former Commercial Hotel in Dalby, which speak to her incredible character and commitment to the Dalby community. 

“Ensuring her memory was preserved was a key component of the project, with Mary’s Place featuring a ‘front bar’ seating structure, Mary’s famous phrase Happy Days Love inscribed at the site, and storytelling signage.  

“The signage links to an online video tribute which can be viewed by anyone who visits the site and wants to learn more about this wonderful local figure and her contributions to the Western Downs.”  

Member for Warrego Ann Leahy said she was delighted to see the completion of Mary's Place.  

“Local publican Mary Barry whom Mary’s Place is named after, was a living legend in Dalby," Ms Leahy said.   

“Generations of locals knew her far and wide for hospitality and her hotel was an institution.  

“Everyone knew about Mary’s, no matter which part of the country they hailed from, and she was a dedicated supporter of many local sporting clubs. 

“I commend the Western Down’s Regional Council for commemorating the memory of Mary Barry, at Mary’s Place." 

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