Andrew Bennett, Murwillumbah.
I have been watching and reading about the Pottsville Men’s Shed debacle for a very long time and decided to travel with a friend to see the proposed sites of Black Rocks Sports Ground and Lot 3 Centennial Drive in Pottsville.
As we drove through the elaborate security gates at BR, entered the remote and isolated sports ground we quickly understood why this area should be retained and restored into a wildlife corridor in order to protect and encourage the survival of the remaining koalas which inhabit this delicate area. We could not understand why the Men’s Shed group would even consider this site due to remoteness, isolation, security risks, no parking and worst of all the semi-industrial nature of the proposal within the boundaries of a threatened colony of koalas and the only natural osprey nest in the whole Tweed coast.
We then visited the proposed site at Centennial Drive Pottsville. It became very much a ‘no brain’ exercise: this site would be perfect. Central to Pottsville, close to existing and supporting infrastructure, the SES, Rural Fire Services and across the road from the Bowls Club (perfect). The existing, temporary Men’s Shed is about 100 metres away at the primary school.
The outcome and decision from our excursion would be the most sensible, practical, less costly, secure and non-threatening site is at Lot 3 Centennial Drive, Pottsville. The Black Rocks sports field should be revegetated and protected for the sake of all endangered species and the enjoyment of the people.
The Men’s Shed is a great concept and service to all concerned and has a lot of community support – just consider the consequences of the location.