THE small village of Moonbi is in the midst of a property boom as residential and business developments take shape.
With acreage in the area snapped up fast for new homes, the general store and post office is about to undergo a dramatic makeover to cater to its growing population.
Claus and Sue Mahlenhoff took over the reins of the Moonbi store and post office in March 2017 and say they are looking forward to providing the community with a new-look building.
The Bendemeer couple has lodged a development application with Tamworth Regional Council for a $621,000 upgrade, which will see a new post office and liquor store built on the site of the town’s old post office that burnt down some years ago.
The development will also include renovations to the existing shop and takeaway facilities.
It is hoped work could begin later this month.
Mr and Mrs Mahlenoff are the former owners of a road house at Colo Heights near Sydney and they’ve enjoyed living in the area so far.
“This is a great community, it’s why we bought the shop,” Mr Mahlenoff said.
“We bought a property in Bendemeer and used to come here on weekends.
“We saw the little shop for sale and decided to buy it.
“We had the plans in mind about what we wanted to do with it before we bought it.”
Mr Malenhoff said the building would be modern and fresh.
“What we’re going to do is restore where the old post office was to a new post office and the other half of the building will be a liquor store,” he said.
“We can utilise more space in the current shop and will be developing the shop as well.
“It’ll be a brand new building, a very modern building for the new one.
“The old shop will be renovated internally, we’ll carry a larger range of stuff and have seating if people want to have coffee or cake.
“We’d hope to start work in January, as soon as all the tradies come back from work.”
Jenny Shean, of Moonbi Realestate, Stock and Station Agency, said the village was becoming a popular place to live.
She said the village and its surrounds had the major necessities and the advantage of being 20 minutes out of Tamworth.
She said the new acreage blocks at Moonbi Heights had almost sold out.
“Moonbi offers a really lovely lifestyle for retirees in the village itself. You’ve got the store, the fuel shop and it’s all local,” she said.
“There is really beautiful land that could be used for equine or lifestyle pursuits with amazing views and town waters.
“There’s also the sporting grounds and there is something held on those grounds of an equine nature every weekend. It’s a lovely community and people keep an eye out for one another.”