Portrait bust honours the late Cyril Golding's contributions to the region

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Gladstone Region Mayor Matt Burnett surrounds the bronze bust of Cyril Golding with Sandra Waterson, Shirley Golding and Neil Golding.

Portrait bust honours the late Cyril Golding's contributions to the region

A permanent memorial to "Mr Gladstone", the late Cyril Golding (1920-2012) was today unveiled in Gladstone's Library Square.

Gladstone Region Mayor Matt Burnett said a life-sized bronze portrait bust and a fibreglass replica crafted by local artist Paul Adamson were gifted to the city by Cyril Golding's wife, Shirley and the Golding family.

"The bronze bust has been located in public space outside the Gladstone City Library and honours Cyril for his vast community involvement," Councillor Burnett said.

A fibreglass replica bust of Cyril Golding will be displayed on occasions at the Gladstone Regional Art Gallery & Museum, particularly associated with events supported by Mr Golding, such as The Golding Showcase.

"Cyril was highly respected in business and industry sectors, was well-known across Queensland as 'Mr Gladstone' and was a major supporter of many worthwhile causes within the Gladstone Region," Councillor Burnett said.

"Cyril was a self-made businessman and from humble beginnings, became a major benefactor to industry, arts and culture, education, youth, sport and recreation and renowned for his kindness, generosity and extensive contributions within the community."

Cr Burnett said as part of a Gladstone Regional Art Gallery & Museum Society program Mr Golding had initiated an annual exhibition of selected art works in all media by local high school students.

"Cyril was a strong supporter of young artists in the region and sponsored the Golding Showcase and the Gladstone Regional Art Gallery & Museum Society's Golding Bursary for Visual Arts," he said.

The Golding Showcase: Port Curtis Callide Valley Art Exhibition was started in 1994 and is an annual exhibition of work by students aged 15 to 18 years.

"The Showcase importantly gives young people the unique opportunity to have their art work exhibited in a major art gallery," Cr Burnett said.

The Gladstone Regional Art Gallery & Museum Society Golding Bursary was established with Mr Golding's generous support in 1996.

"Since Cyril's passing in 2012, the Golding family has continued his legacy to assist students from the Gladstone, Port Curtis and Callide Valley regions of Central Queensland to pursue a chosen field of tertiary study in visual arts," Cr Burnett said.

He said the life-sized portrait busts would honour the man who had made such a big impact in the Gladstone Region.

"Cyril was an industry pioneer who was highly regarded within the Australian resources sector and possessed great philanthropic characteristics," Cr Burnett said.

"Cyril formed Golding Contractors Pty Ltd in 1942 and grew the firm to become one of the largest private owned civil infrastructure and mining service companies in Queensland.

"The company, commonly known as Golding, contributed to many major industry projects and Cyril provided financial and in-kind support to many of the Gladstone Region's sporting groups, organisations and educational institutions."

Cyril Golding received many notable accolades. Highlights among his achievements include:

2001 - Awarded the Centenary Medal for distinguished service to the community through provision of employment and training.

2008 - First citizen to receive the key to the City of Gladstone.

2009 - Represented Queensland at the Australian of the Year in the Local Hero Award category.

2009 - Winner of the 2009 QRC Medal for contribution to the Queensland Minerals and Energy sector.

2011 - First inductee to the Gladstone Engineering Alliance Industrial Hall of Fame.

2012 - Inducted into the Queensland Business Leaders Hall of Fame.