Torrens Creek is a tiny township part of Flinders Shire Council in Queensland. Located about 88kms east of Hughenden and 166kms west of Charters Towers on the Flinders Highway, there are approximately 20 people who live in this town.
Torrens Creek has a long and interesting history and just like many outback towns, this tiny place also has memories of former glory. William Landsborough, who went for an expedition from Adelaide on the Gulf in search of Burke and Wills, named the creek which rises in the Great Dividing Range and runs southward to the Thompson River system to eventually reach Lake Eyre, Torrens Creek. He named the creek after Sir Robert Torrens, Premier of South Australia
Torrens Creek became part of mail supply centre with mailmen who rode out north and south to various stations between Charters Towers and Hughenden after the railway reached Torrens Creek in 1885. A local mailman, William John `Jack` Bunt, was spent his life as a mailman from 1931 to 1954. A monument was erected on Flinders Highway by residents of Torrens Creek to commemorate his courage and integrity as a lifetime resident and local mailman.
Torrens Creek played a vital role on Coral Sea battle in 1942 during World War II. Because of its strategic location, Torrens Creek became a supply dump for explosives, which was accidentally blown up by US soldiers. Because of the explosions, in the townships, buildings shook, windows broke, and people were convinced an air raid had occurred. Constable Seawright of Torrens Creek Police was with thousand soldiers and civilians attacked the blazing grass that resulted from the explosion. Because of his action, he was awarded the King's Medal of Bravery.
Another remarkable history to come out of this tiny town was the heroic action of John Crosby who single-handedly saved the lives of everyone on a crowded train. One wet evening in 1917, this local railway water pump operator tried his best to stop the incoming train from a big disaster. He cut wood to build a big fire on either side of the line, stabbed himself and mopped the blood up in his handkerchief to wrap around the lantern to make a warning red light and even charged himself towards the oncoming train waving his white shirt in the glare of its light in order to stop the train and make them aware of the water down the creek. In the end, everyone in the train was saved because of John Crosby's actions.
Nowadays, Passersby travelling from Hughenden to Charters Towers might stop in Torrens Creek for fuel, some nibbles or cold drinks. The Exchange Hotel is one place in Torrens Creek that will provide all travellers with cool drinks, and great meals. What is unique about this hotel is it has a graffiti gallery and visitors are invited to add their mark to the existing humour. If you don't need to buy anything and just need to stretch your legs, why don't you walk across this hotel and check the green feet that look like they belong to a dinosaur? Psssst, it's actually a bin camouflaged into a dinosaur's feet!