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Overview

Westbrook is a small town which originally began as a pastoral settlement in the 1840s. Today it’s become a commuter settlement for Toowoomba, and its population is growing rapidly. Westbrook is a popular place for young families, giving good access to all the city amenities but with a lower population density.

Westbrook has a warm temperate climate. Summers are warm with moderate rainfall; winters are cool and dry. Temperatures seldom if ever fall below freezing, while summer peaks are in the mid-30s.

Population – 3,885
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander percentage of population – 3.1 percent
Closest major town – Toowoomba (16km)
Distance from airport – Distance from airport – Toowoomba (15.9 km),
Brisbane (154km)
Cinemas – 0
Restaurants – 2
Pubs/bars – 1
Primary schools – 1
Secondary schools – 0
Tertiary education providers – 0
Max average temp – 32°C
Min average temp – 6°C

  • Population – 3,287
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander percentage of population – 2.6%
  • Closest major town – Toowoomba (10 km)
  • Distance from airport – Toowomba (8.32 km), Brisbane (125.47 km)
  • Cinemas – 0
  • Restaurants – 1
  • Pubs/bars – 1
  • Primary schools – 1
  • Secondary schools – 0
  • Tertiary education providers – 0
  • Max average temp – 28.1⁰C
  • Min average temp – 6.4⁰C

The location

The heart of Westbrook is located on the Gore Highway just to the southwest of Toowoomba. It’s around 16 km from the city centre and 9 km from the suburb of Drayton.

The People

Westbrook residents are, on average, much younger than their counterparts elsewhere. The median age is 32, compared with 37 for Queensland and 38 nationally, and half self-identify as either Catholic or Anglican. There are many families with young children and a disproportionately low number of people aged 65 and over. 3.1 percent of residents are from an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander background.

The traditional owners of the Westbrook area are the Giabal people. Westbrook’s modern Aboriginal population consists of people from several different language groups.

The Medicine

Local medical care is provided by Westbrook Medical Clinic, which has a small team of GPs on staff. There are no local hospitals or ambulance services, nor is there a local aged care facility, although all of these can be found in nearby Toowoomba.

Westbrook Family Medical Centre provides care regarding adult internal medicine, diabetes, asthma, diet and nutrition as well as:

  • Acute care
  • DVA services
  • Family health checks
  • Family planning
  • Pap screening
  • Pre- and post-natal care
  • ECG & cardiac checks
  • Vaccinations & immunisations
  • Skin cancer medicine

Westbrook’s health profile is not disadvantaged. Median income is relatively high, a strong indicator of good health, and the incidence of age-related chronic illness is low. However, some lifestyle factors are a concern. Smoking incidence is high and a majority of residents have an unhealthy weight. Alcohol consumption is also prevalent.

Westbrook is in the Darling Downs & West Moreton PHN and is rated RA2.

Education

Educational services in Westbrook are limited, with many parents opting for one of the many schools in Toowoomba. Beyond primary level, Toowoomba is the closest option. Day care is provided by Goodstart Early Learning in Drayton, with the lone public primary school being Bunker’s Hill Primary.

The closest university is the University of Southern Queensland at the Toowoomba Campus, only a little over 6 km from the town within easy driving distance.

Career options for partners

61.6 percent of the residents of Westbrook work full time, higher than the Queensland average of 57.7 percent. The biggest local employment sector is health followed by primary education. Many residents commute into Toowoomba.

29.4 percent of the residents are in part-time employment. 18.3 percent of people have volunteered through an organisation or group in the last 12 months. However, there are no charitable organisations based in the town itself.

Arts and Culture

Although Westbrook is a small place, there are some cultural activities going on. You can have piano and cello lessons locally and the GRID offers dance classes. There is a mobile library that comes in from Toowoomba on a regular basis, since the town doesn’t have its own library. Toowoomba is close by and has a much wider range of classes and venues.

Great Outdoors

Ravensbourne National Park is easily reached from Westbrook and it’s a popular destination for nature lovers. The park has a variety of bird life in a range of native habitats, including some extremely well preserved rainforest.

Crow’s Nest National Park is also nearby; it has camping facilities and is well known for its spectacular cliffs and waterfalls. Other outdoor facilities for bushwalks and camping include:

  • Westbrook Park
  • Centenary Park
  • Mount Peel Bushland Reserve
  • Ravensbourne National Park
  • Redwood Park
  • Queens Park

Westbrook is a small suburb and doesn’t have a lot of sporting opportunities of its own, but this isn’t a major drawback – Toowoomba is only a few minutes away and has plenty to do. There are some local facilities including tennis courts and a local kart track; the Westbrook Sports Club organises regular events for young people.

There are several recognised cycling routes around Westbrook, ranging from 2 km up to 57.7 km. The surrounding area, especially to the west and south, also has plenty of scope for scenic bike trips.

Social Scene

Although most locals head out to Toowoomba for a night out, the local Westbrook Tavern is also worth checking out. For movies, music and any other entertainment, Toowoomba is only a few kilometres away.

Food and Drink

Westbrook is mostly residential and amenities are in short supply. There are two cafes in Drayton. The nearest restaurants are a short drive away in Toowoomba, but if you’re looking for a pizza, there’s a great takeaway in Westbrook that will deliver.

Housing

Westbrook’s population is growing rapidly, and most of the housing stock is new. The median price for a four-bedroom home in Westbrook is $440,000 with a similar home renting for around $400 per week.

Almost all homes are separate houses and are generally spacious. Demand is average, and Westbrook’s growing popularity as a commuter suburb of Toowoomba means prices are fairly high.

Transport

Westbrook has no railway station; the twice-weekly Charleville-Brisbane Westlander service stops in Toowoomba. The closest bus station is in Toowoomba. Westbrook sits on the Gore Highway, which runs between Toowoomba and Goondiwindi. There is good access to the rest of the Queensland highway network.

Other attractions

Broadband is available via ADSL2+, NBN fixed wireless and fibre cable.

Westbrook used to be the location of a notorious prison, but this was closed in 2012 and the site has been redeveloped into a Buddhist private educational facility.