Territory Stories

Parliamentary record : Part I debates (16 August 1990)



Parliamentary record : Part I debates (16 August 1990)


Debates for 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Northern Territory Legislative Assembly

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Thursday 16 August 1990 mapping the limestone caves, helped with walking trails and created some emergency helicopter pads in case of accidents in the area. It was interesting to talk with these young adults from. all around the world who were making their first trip to the Northern Territory. Theywere in Darwi n for 1 ess than a week before goi ng out to the Gregory Nat i ona 1 Park. They were absolutely fascinated by the area. They could not say enough about it. In fact, 3 of the 9 people ina party which had worked. on the cave systems determined that, on their return to England, they would save up immediately to return and spend some more time in the park area. That included 1 girl who, unfortunately, had fallen and broken her leg and had to be treated at Timber Creek. She'demanded to be taken back to the party arid remained with it' for the week that they were in Gregory National Park. She did not want to miss out on anything.' In closing, I reiterate that I believe that this park has the potential to become one of the greatest parks in the Northern Territory. As one of my colleagues interjected a while ago, it may possibly become one of the greatest parks in the world. I congratulate the government on its declaration. Mrs PADGHAM-PURICH (Koolpinyah): Mr Deputy Speaker, I rise to support the mi ni ster' s statement with enthus i asm and pleasure. I speak wi th some knowledge, on the subject, knowing officers in the. Conservation' Commission probably better than most, though perhaps not as well as the Minister for Primary Industry and Fisheries. I know their dedication to their,.work and I believe that they are just as concerned as some honourable members who have commented on the fact that it has taken 6 years actually to declare this park. That has-not been for the want of effort on their part. It has been due to a number of reasons, the chief being, as honourable members before me have said, the land claims put over an area that the Northern Territory government had bought for inclusion in the park which, from the park's point of view, is in a state of limbo at the moment. Let us hope that some arrangement that is acceptab 1 e to both sides can be worked out so that that area can be included in the Gregory National Park at some time in the future. With the happy working relationship between the Conservation Commission and. the traditional owners of Gurig National Park, a precedent has already been set for the Conservation Commission to work with the traditional owners of particular areas, and I cannot see why the same type of arrangement cannot be reached in respect Of the relevan:tarea of land in the Gregory National Park area so that it also can become part of the park. As well as the park presenting its wild, natura 1 beauty to all of those who visit it, I would like to.be assured that some steps will be taken to preserve features of historical significance in the park in terms of pastoral settlement, the sites,that were marked by the first surveyors of the areas as well as the areas of significance to Aboriginal people. Not only will it then be a park of na:tural beauty, but a park of history as well. Mr Deputy Speaker, 4-wheel-drive activity in the park has been mentioned. Without being told,. I would have assumed that the 4-wheel-drive enthusiasts would not be allowed to go hell, west and crooked in the park but would be allowed reasonable access, along appropriately defined paths. Thi s faci 1 ity offered to 4-whee l-dri ve enthus i asts is not able to be made available in places 1 ike Kakadu National Park, where people have to be extremely careful that they do not go off the beaten track at all , because they will be subject to a hefty fine if they do so. I refer to a particular 9915