Gosford Council and NSW State Government: I support the protection of Bambara
Bambara, meaning "Forest" is around 180 acres of privately owned land (main road is public) which includes a known Aboriginal Songline and is totally surrounded by Brisbane Water National Park and hundreds of sacred Aboriginal engravings, drawings and rock paintings. The main owners of the land have Bambara for sale and have said they are willing to sell to the Government to have the land included in the National Park, but so far the offers by the Government for the main lots have been miniscule and have been rejected by the owners.
In the locality of the Bambara area, in Kariong, there are at least 35 known threatened flora and fauna species including the Powerful Owl, the Giant Burrowing frog and the iconic Koala. There are the recently listed as Endangered Ecological Community (ECC) the Sandstone Hanging Swamps and clean fresh watercourses that feed into our thriving Oyster Farming Industry in Brisbane Waters. There are 23 registered (AHIM'S) Aboriginal sites on the lots and the mysterious and internationally famous Kariong Egyptian Hieroglyphs (Egyptian style engravings) just outside the lots in the National Park, which featured in an international 6 part series, Tony Robinson Explores Australia. The Kariong Glyphs site draws thousands of visitors to the Central Coast each year, including internationals.
The Bambara are is well and truly loved and utilised in a very positive way by our local community including many families, youth and elders that frequent the area. Several Social Justice Programs are run at Bambara and have had great success in helping to engage and turn around the lives of many of our local challenged youth. Other groups that enjoy gently visiting the area are, Primary and High Schools, Tafes, University's, Social groups, bushwalking groups, Scouts, Cubs and Venturers, jogging and social walking (for fitness) groups, artist groups (held exhibitions after visiting the area), photographers, film-makers (several short films and documentaries have been made about the area), meditation groups, official tour groups (some very large) and many, many more.
The majority of the land at Bambara is on very high ground and the views of Brisbane water, right through to Palm Beach (Sydney), are truly amazing. Over the years, 14 separate development applications have been lodged. Developers continually try to develop/destroy this area knowing fully well, that around 1000 mature trees, would have to be felled and the land gutted to make way for just 7 houses. That doesn't include the further clearing to put a perimeter fire trail, which would include another 1500-2000 trees to be removed!
WE CAN'T LET THAT HAPPEN!!
Members of our campaign were involved in the Land and Environment Court proceedings after the last Development Application lodgement (as public objectors) and we received the welcome news was received on Friday June 25th 2010 at 4.17pm, that we had won the court case and this particular battle... The Land and Environment Court knocked back the Development Application!!
But the land is still open for development, is currently on the market and there is still no official protection for this very special place...
This community has tirelessly campaigned for the protection of this area for 80 years (see timeline tab), of course understanding and respecting Pemulwoy, Musquito, Woglamigh and the many other Original Custodians who fought for this land starting 224 years ago! and this land is still not zoned as National Park.
We must keep pushing to make sure that this very culturally and ecologically important and unique place at Bambara is protected and acquired by the Government for future generations to enjoy, before it's too late.
** Please get involved in helping this cause by filling in the online petition, which is actually a letter, and keep an eye out for upcoming events **
This area is regularly frequented and enjoyed by thousands of locals and the mysterious Egyptian Hieroglyphs (Egyptian style engravings) located just outside the blocks, draws international visitors and has been part of an international documentary from the History Channel called "Tony Robinson Explores Australia."
Some groups that frequent Bambara include: Local Aboriginal groups, Scout groups, tourist groups, bushwalking groups, Mountain biking groups, meditation & yoga groups, schools, tafes, university's, environmental groups, documentary film makers and the area is used by many locals for walking, jogging, cultural activities, nature photography, art projects and much more.
Please take urgent action, as this issue is causing distress for many people and to lose this very special land at Bambara would be an absolute disaster.