You're wonderful, mural

Khancoban honours Snowy workers with mural on post office wall

Domestic travel
SALUTE TO WORKERS: The mural on the side of the Khancoban post office, located in the Snowy Mountains town's shopping area.

SALUTE TO WORKERS: The mural on the side of the Khancoban post office, located in the Snowy Mountains town's shopping area.

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Small NSW town pays tribute to men and women who put it on the map.

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The thousands of workers who passed through the tiny NSW town of Khancoban during the construction of the Snowy Mountains Scheme have been honoured in a mural on its post office wall.

The town raised $6000 for artist/illustrator Rebecca Page to design and paint the 13m x 4m artwork, which depicts a lineman at work in a bosun's chair, a tunneller, and a labourer breaking rocks. The mountains and Khancoban Pondage form the backdrop.

Postmaster Ron Aaron said Khancoban was more or less built to house workers recruited for the giant engineering project, which drew migrants from all over war-torn Europe.

At its peak some 2000 people lived in the town, which today has a population of not quite 300. Some of those workers from the 1940s and '50s still have connections with the area.

Ron, 64, said the work took about a fortnight and made quite an impression on locals, who were almost unanimous in their support of the design.

"Every day people would drop and to see it take shape, chatting with Rebecca as she worked and observing the changes," said Ron, originally from Melbourne.

It wasn't all plain sailing, though. The mural was painted during summer, with Rebecca starting work at 3pm each day to beat the worst of the heat.

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