Flinders Shire


We acknowledge the:

  • Traditional Owners and custodians the Yirandali people of the land within the Flinders Shire Council local government area and we pay respect to their Elders past, present and emerging.
  • Employees within the Flinders Shire Council teams who help us to continue to improve our Shire. We appreciate the value of our employees and would like to thank them for their service. 
  • Many volunteers within our community who so generously give their own time and energy to enrich the lives of those around them, and make our region a great place to live and visit.

Flinders Shire

Covering 41,199.2km2 the Flinders Shire is situated approximately half way between the cities of Townsville and Mount Isa and is named after Queensland’s longest river – the Flinders River.  The Flinders Shire is divided by the Flinders Highway – now known as the popular tourist drive “The Overlander’s Way”.  The Flinders Highway runs east and west through the Kennedy Developmental Road – which runs north and south through the Flinders Shire.  Encompassing the townships of Hughenden, Prairie, Torrens Creek and Stamford, Flinders Shire has become a major hub for transport and travellers alike. Hughenden is the main centre, situated on the Flinders River, 386km west of Townsville and 519km east of Mount Isa in north western Queensland. 

As at the 2016 Census the Flinders Shire has a population of 1,569 residents. Its main industries are cattle and sheep grazing, tourism and renewable energy.  The Shire has three prominent geological features:  Porcupine Gorge in the north, Flinders River which winds from the White Mountains which are in the north-east through to the west of the Shire, and the Great Inland Sea.  Hughenden is the centre of “Dinosaur Country”. Prehistoric finds include the great Muttaburrasaurus, Hughenden Sauropod and the Queensland Pterosaur, as well as many ammonites, molluscs and sharks teeth dating back to the Cretaceous era.

The Flinders shire includes a variety of diverse landscapes, with basalt caps and gorges to the north, desert country to the south-east and open flat black soil plains to the south and west. The Shire has four different bio-regions with ever-changing ecosystems including the Desert Uplands, Einasleigh Uplands, Mitchell Grass Downs and a small portion of Gulf Plains.  

Major events held in the Flinders Shire include the Annual Hughenden Agricultural Show, Hughenden Festival of Outback Skies, Hughenden Country Music Festival, Hughenden Camp Draft, Porcupine Gorge Challenge, Hughenden Races, Rugby 7s Carnival as well as country race meetings held annually at Stamford, Prairie and Kooroorinya Falls Nature Reserve.  The Shire welcomes over 18,000 visitors per year through the accredited Visitor Information Centre, The Flinders Discovery Centre. 

Flinders Shire was drought declared in April 2013. An active monsoon trough and a slow-moving low pressure system over the northern tropics produced extremely heavy rainfall in tropical Queensland from late January into early February 2019.  Parts of Flinders Shire had significant rainfall followed by below average temperatures and high wind conditions. The Flinders River reached major flood levels in Hughenden and other parts of the Shire several times, and damage extended to the grazing industry, small business, the not-for-profit sector and road infrastructure.  Our recovery from this severe weather event is a complex task.