Discover the Atherton Tableland: A Fertile Plateau in Tropical Queensland

Nestled inland from Cairns, the Atherton Tableland graces the Great Dividing Range. While it lies within the wet tropics, its elevated position and fertile soils support a diverse array of intensive cropping, horticultural endeavours, and grazing industries. Covering approximately 32,000 square kilometres, the Tableland’s altitude ranges from 500 to 1,280 meters (1,600 to 4,200 feet). The richness of its soils owes much to their volcanic origins.

U3A Atherton Tablelands (U3AAT): A Hub for Lifelong Learning

Founded in March 2011, the U3A branch on the Tablelands offers courses and activities across the region. Our primary centre for classes and gatherings is the Glyn Davies Room (Room 22) at the Atherton Community Centre, located at 42 Mabel Street, Atherton (opposite the Council Chambers in the old Atherton Primary School). You can find a map here.

What Is U3A?

U3A caters to individuals who have completed their working lives but desire to continue learning and expanding their horizons. No educational qualifications are necessary to join, and there are no exams. Members share their expertise and interests freely. There is no minimum age, but a focus on people who are no longer in full-time employment or raising a family.

For an annual membership fee, participants can attend as many classes and activities as they wish. Keep in mind that some classes may require modest contributions from members or contributions toward course content (such as ingredients for cooking classes).

Over the years, U3AAT has offered more than 100 diverse talks, courses, and stimulating activities. Our web page, informative newsletters and active Facebook page keep everyone informed about our endeavours. If you’re curious about the activities on offer, check out the details here.

U3AAT and Beyond

As part of the U3A Queensland network, U3A Atherton Tablelands members are warmly welcomed at any U3A branch in Queensland. Additionally, our members can explore online courses and even sit in on select courses provided by other U3As via Zoom.

U3A is very active Australia wide. U3A (University of the Third Age) began in Australia in 1984, in Melbourne, and spread rapidly to other parts of Australia. U3As were established as autonomous groups, with their own administration and curriculum according to the needs and interests of each group. There are now about 300 U3As in Australia, with about 100,000 members. These are all represented by a national body formed in 2010 to foster co-operation and exchange of information between the Networks, and to advocate for the U3A movement at a national level where deemed appropriate and necessary.

Internationally, the University of the Third Age (U3A) is a worldwide movement which began in France in 1973. There are U3As on every continent and most countries. There are also virtual and online U3As that can be joined from anywhere.