Dunmunkle Sumpoilers

Things to Do and See

Explore attractions unique to Murtoa

 

Start your journey at The Stick Shed, often referred to as “The Cathedral of the Wimmera”. This large, Heritage Listed structure is open for sightseeing, with guided tours available all year long. It occasionally hosts various pop up art installations, expos, concerts and fine wine & dine events.

Learn about the history of the railway transport that dates back to 1876 by visiting The Murtoa Museum Precinct.  Inspect departure halls of the old Railway Station, walk up the spiral staircase of the Water Tower,  hosting the famous taxidermy collection and visit Concordia Cottage, the old seminary classroom. Just follow the railroad tracks on the way from the Stick Shed.

You can further explore the town’s interesting past on foot, thanks to Murtoa Heritage Trails, a self guided walking tour that lists the town’s many significant sights.

Enjoy a leisurely scroll around the picturesque Lake Marma and adjacent Rabl Park. Grab a picnic rug, relax and listen to the wild life while watching the most picturesque sunset.

 

Scroll down for more details & opening hours.

The Stick Shed

 

Originally built as a war-time emergency grain storage in 1941, this unique, Australian Heritage Listed structure has become a remarkable example of Aussie ingenuity and the local farming community.

It was constructed using over 560 natural mountain ash poles and is 270m in length. Soaring to 19m in height and a width of 60m, it gives the impression of a grand cathedral. For that reason it is often referred to at “The Cathedral of the Wimmera”.

Located next to the Grain Corp Receival Facility at the East entry to the town, the Stick Shed is open for guided tours and occasional events, such as art shows and art installations, concerts, expos and private weddings.

The Wine & Dine in the Stick Shed, held annually, is a premier fine dining event with famous chefs coming to town to show their culinary prowess to some 200 dining guests.

The Stick Shed entry tickets, souvenirs, maps and tourist brochures are available at the Stick Shed visitor information centre.

Admission $10 Adults, $9 Concession, $5 Children, $20 Family.

OPENING HOURS:

Daily 10am – 2pm

 

The Murtoa Museum Precinct

  • 1 Comyn St , Murtoa, VIC
  • +61 429 944 673
  • +61 437 920 734

 

The Murtoa Museum Precinct includes The Heritage Listed Railway Water Tower (1886), Concordia Cottage (1892) and the recently restored Murtoa Railway Station (1886).

Explore the impressive 4-storey, 13-metre high Water Tower Museum, which hosts the unique James Hill Taxidermy Collection with over 500 birds and other fauna, as well as historic artefacts, memorabilia and household and farming tools from 1890’s, the era of the town’s most significant growth. Climb up the spiral staircase to the top floor, which reveals the underbelly of the 40,000 gallon wrought iron tank that used to store water for steam locomotives.

Concordia Cottage is an original classroom from Murtoa’s first Concordia Lutheran Seminary. The cottage houses displays of period clothing, an antique organ, the Murtoa Telecom manual switchboard, stories of local heroes and more.

The recently refurbished Railway Station presents history of railway transport in Murtoa, its significance for the town’s boom and the demise of passenger travel. Relics of historical bakery and saddlery are on show in The Goods Shed.

If you are lucky, you may be able to watch and count carriages of a typical grain train as it passes through the Murtoa Railway Station on its way to a port  at 110kms per hour! The interstate rail line The Overland,  which runs between Adelaide and Melbourne, also passes through Murtoa. The town is hoping to make Murtoa an additional service stop on this iconic train journey.

The Murtoa Historic Precinct entry tickets, Murtoa Heritage Trails self guided walking tour brochures and a range of delicious, homemade Water Tower Preserves are available at the Water Tower Museum shop.

Admission $5 Adult. Children under 16 free

OPENING HOURS:

Monday – Saturday 12pm – 2pm

Sunday 12pm – 4 pm & any other times by appointment

 

Lake Marma

 

Lake Marma is one of Murtoa’s many wonderful assets. Thanks to abundant birdlife, fish and the most picturesque views of sunrise and sunset, it has always attracted those who long to connect with nature.

Originally a small natural swamp it became incorporated into the Wimmera Mallee water supply system over a century ago and until recently, it was the source of Murtoa’s drinking water.

Tdday, Lake Marma is a popular relaxation spot with  a 2km tree and reed lined walking tracks, fishing and boat jetty, small beach, manicured park lawns and benches for you to sit on whilst enjoying the magnificent views

Rabl Park

 

Named after Murtoa’s most prominent doctor and long-resident family, the park was developed by the now-defunct Apex Club over many years.

The hard work of this group has seen a wasteland and swamp become a delightful area for public use next to Lake Marma. It has semi-permanent water in an irregular reed lined lake, which sees an abundance of fish, ducks and other wild life.

It has attractive green surrounds, jetties, bridges, a playground, BBQ and toilet facilities with a tourist information board and a well-loved Skate Park ready for any skating enthusiasts.

Rabl Park also features the re-located  historic Murtoa Railway Station foot bridge (1896) spanning the lake narrows. The many paths shaded by beautiful mature trees make for a lovely, relaxing walk.

Dunmunkle Sumpoilers

Dunmunkle Sumpoilers Historic Engines Museum

 

It is a rare sight to see a collection of massive Ruston-Hornsby engines, known as Dunmunkle Sumpoilers, in one place. These wonderfully preserved engines, all shiny and in perfect working order still exist thanks to their private owners who collaboratively come together to share them with the public.

Housed in the historic Wimmera Inland Freezing Works buildings at the East end of Murtoa and impressive in size, each weighing up to twenty tonnes or so, the Dunmunkle Sumpoilers were originally used to generate power for the factory’s refrigeration operations back in 1911.

Watching them run is a truly unforgettable experience and a real priviledge as the Sumpoilers are only shown in action during Murtoa’s Big Weekend, held at the start of October each year.

The Dunmunkle Sumpoilers are not currently available for viewing. We apologise for any inconvenience.

Murtoa Cemetery

  • Murtoa Cemetery Rd, Murtoa, VIC
  • +61 3 5385 2483

 

Three kilometres east of town is a well-preserved old cemetery with the first burials recorded as early as 1870s.  It saw war conflicts as well family tragedies since the first settlement.

A Marble Memorial Seat featuring a motif of Madonna and a child, created by a local artist Steve Monk, pays tribute to some  248 children who were stillborn or  died as infants and were buried at Murtoa Cemetery.

Visitors can see extraordinary examples of early floral decorations and a number of graves with old German inscriptions.

This historic site is managed by Murtoa Cemetery Trust.

 

Barrabool Nature Conservation Reserve

 

Just 20 minutes south of Murtoa is Barrabool Nature Conservation Reserve of largely undisturbed Wimmera forest with important Aboriginal sites.

It is accessible only in dry conditions via the many tracks throughout. Ancient trees and even older waterways abound within – a real treat for a nature buff.

GrainCorp Receival Centre

Victoria’s largest inland grain storage, ‘Marmalake’ is located adjacent the Stick Shed and is a hive of activity during the Summer harvest, with a vast number of trucks carrying many varieties of crop to the huge storage areas, both above, and on the ground.

The products are mostly transported to their various destinations via the adjacent railway, then shipped overseas as needed for market demands.

The Dunmunkle Standard

  • 36 McDonald Street, Murtoa
  • 03 5385 2785
  • 0407 722 754

Printed for the first time in 1878 the Dunmunkle Standard was an iconic newspaper that delivered news to Murtoa and surrounding region for more than 100 years.

Located in McDonald Street, the family business operated a number of printing machines until a couple of decades ago. Unfortunately, most of them are now owned by private collectors but visitors to Murtoa can still see the remains of the printing shop featuring an artwork by “Slatts”  a talented son of the Slattery printers.

Today the Dunmunkle Standard is published fortnightly under the name Murtoa and District Advertiser. Under the management of Murtoa Progress Association it is still edited by Mrs Veronica Slattery.