A $15,000 ‘strike’ for Uralla Goldfields weed management program, with local land managers Bruce McMullen, left, Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall and Bob Crouch.
Wednesday, 23 February 2022
VISITORS to Uralla will soon have greater access to the town’s historic goldfields, with Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall today announcing a $15,000 State Government grant to tackle invasive weeds in the Uralla Goldfields Reserve.
Mr Marshall said the grant would continue a 20-year effort by the reserve’s land managers to open the historic gold mining area around Mount Mutton up to tourists.
“Just as scrub once made it tough for miners to get to the prime gold panning sites along Rocky River, today noxious weeds are blocking tourists from accessing the area which made Uralla famous,” Mr Marshall said.
“Over time the invasive blackberry, cotoneaster, pyracantha and pine tree have taken over the two blocks which make up the Uralla Goldfields Reserve.
“The density of the pine tree infestation has significantly impacted the growth of native plant species and increased the risk of bushfire within the reserve, which backs on to houses.
“Working with Uralla Shire Council, the land managers will use this grant to clear the weeds and oversee revegetation of Mount Mutton Gully. They will also undertake a significant weed eradication program on the north eastern side of Arnold Goode Reserve (Francis Hill).
“This is more than just about clearing weeds, it’s about re-connecting Uralla with its pioneering past.
“I thank Uralla Goldfields Reserve land managers for the work they have done caring for this important hidden gem.”
Uralla Goldfield Reserve Manager and Weeds Officer Bob Crouch said clearing invasive species would open up access to the stunning Francis Hill.
“The success of clearing nearby Mount Mutton Gully facilitated a joint council and land manager project to construct a walking track through the unique geology of the former goldfield,” Mr Crouch said.
“Our goal is ultimately to provide walking trails around Francis Hill, but before this can happen the invasive species need to be removed from this block, and revegetation plans implemented.
“The project will continue to involve council, however we would also like to enlist professional support to remove the dense infestation of pine wildlings.
“The densely vegetated reserve is right on the edge of Uralla, close to homes, and so long-term we also want to construct fire trails to make it easier for fire fighters to do their job.
“Our volunteers have done such great work over the years managing the weeds, and this funding will allow us to eradicate many of the worst varieties and thereby increase access to these reserve blocks to the public.”