Access to the coastline and spectacular views from the Tura Headland have been greatly improved, with the much-anticipated walking track upgrade project now completed and open.
Council’s Recreation Projects Officer, Glenn Merrick, said the intense weather events in the first half of the year and a wait on necessary permits had initially delayed work, however the outcome is particularly pleasing.
“The extreme weather events caused significant erosion along the track and brought down dozens of trees, making it particularly hazardous, so we made the most of the closure to trim trees and remove the fallen branches,” Mr Merrick said.
“What has been created is a much safer asset that is now usable by people with a wide range of abilities, with three viewing platforms now offering great vantage points to take in the spectacular views, including close encounters with whales.
“These platforms provide a safer alternative and a complementary addition to the more hazardous rock platform at the end of the walk.”
Mr Merrick said Tura Headland is a significant archaeological site and culturally important to local Aboriginal people and the project benefitted greatly from their input and knowledge.
“Prior to the commencement of works Tathra based archaeologists, Lantern Heritage, along with members of the Bega Local Aboriginal Land Council (LALC) and Djirringanj Elders Federation, identified dozens of artefacts along the track route, all of which have been recorded and will be repatriated nearby with the assistance of Local Aboriginal people.
“The construction of the track and viewing platforms was subsequently undertaken with great care and without any excavation to preserve the integrity of the site, with the platforms effectively pinned to the ground rather than using conventional footings.
“The formalised track will improve the management of the site and prevent the future trampling of middens and native vegetation, as the walk is becoming a more popular destination for both locals and tourists,” Mr Merrick said.
Thanks to a partnership with the NSW Department of Primary Industries, several young members of the Bega LALC were employed for the duration of the construction and made a significant contribution to the team of local contractors from Creative Lines Pty Ltd, while gaining skills in track construction techniques.
The Tura Headland track upgrade project has been delivered with co-funding from the NSW Government’s Stronger Country Communities Fund Round Two ($200,000) and a Bega Valley Shire Council contribution.
Member for Bega Andrew Constance said the track upgrades at Tura Headland will provide opportunities for Tura Beach residents and visitors of all abilities to experience the stunning coastline.
“The paths will allow prams and assisted wheelchair users to navigate the track, opening up the experience to a wider range of the community including families with young children, older visitors and residents and those with limited mobility,” Mr Constance said.
“The accessible paths will allow prams and wheelchair users to navigate the track, opening up the experience to a wider range of the community including families with young children, older visitors and residents and those with limited mobility,” Mr Constance said.
“This project is one of many examples of how the Stronger Country Communities Fund is enriching the lives of residents in every corner of regional NSW with work completed or underway on more than 1,500 projects, and I’m thrilled to see the Tura Headland track completed for the community to enjoy.”
The $500 million Stronger Country Communities Fund is part of the NSW Government’s $2 billion Regional Growth Fund, which is being invested in local projects that improve the lives of people living in regional NSW.
Images: Bega Valley Shire Council