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Reconciliation Bridge Walk and Candle Light Vigil in Support of Aboriginal Housing on the Block June 9th

Following the declaration of State Significant Boundaries REDWatch joined with other groups to organise a Candle Light Vigil and Reconciliation Bridge Walk in Support of the Aboriginal Housing Company and the Block.

Dear Member of Parliament,

Reconciliation Bridge Walk and Candle Light Vigil in Support of Aboriginal Housing on the Block June 9th

You may recall REDWatch recently invited you on a bus tour to “See Redfern before Frank Sells it”. The sale we referred to has come one step closer with the gazettal of the initial RWA areas of state significance.

We are now writing to invite you to another event which we are supporting. This event is a Reconciliation Bridge Walk and Candle Light Vigil in Support of Aboriginal Housing on The Block. This event is being organised by Redfern Residents for Reconciliation with the support of local churches, ALP branches and REDWatch. Marshals will be provided by the CFMEU.

The Bridge walk will gather in front of the RWA Office at the old TNT building at 6.30 pm on Thursday 9th June 2005 before moving off at 7pm over the Redfern Railway Bridge for a candle light vigil on the Block. The event should take an hour.

This event takes on special significance with the decision last week to include the Aboriginal Housing Company (AHC) owned Block under the planning control of the Minister for Redfern Waterloo. Minister Sartor has made it clear that he does not want the AHC Pemulwuy project built on the Block.

Attached to this email we have included a copy of the map of the area gazetted as State Significant under the RWA for your easy reference.

As you will see the sites covered in the earlier REDWatch tour are all now declared as State Significant even though they adjoin no other designated State Significant area. These areas are the old Redfern Public School, old Rachael Foster Hospital, the old Redfern Police station and the recently closed Redfern Court House.

In addition to these sites and the expected Railway Corridor, ATP and North Eveleigh the RWA gazetted area also includes two areas of private land.

One area starts at the old TNT towers and includes a couple of blocks south opposite the expected Railway Station / City Centre development.

The real surprise however was the inclusion of the Aboriginal Housing Company owned Block and a large area of private property in that vicinity. This will make Minister Sartor who opposes the Pemulwuy project the consent authority for any building on the Block, a move that is creating uproar in the community.

More information on the AHC proposals for the block can be found on their website www.ahc.org.au as well as in the May / June edition of the Architecture Bulletin.

Finally you may also be interested to know that the RWA state significant boundary cuts through the northern side of Lawson Street, which is reputed to be the longest row of identical terraces in Sydney. Lawson Street is also where the Health Department’s controversial Health Centre has been proposed and the State significant boundary goes along Lawson Street just far enough to ensure the centre can be within the RWA’s planning control.

The Health Department has asked City of Sydney to defer decisions on their DA following uproar over the development and the failure of the Government to carry out the community consultation promised to the NSW upper house.

We hope that you will consider coming out to Redfern during the evening recess on June 9th and joining with the community in this important Reconciliation event.

Attached we have also included a poster to advertise the event and would appreciate any publicity you can give this event through your networks.



Geoffrey Turnbull
For REDWatch
C/- PO Box 1567, Strawberry Hills NSW 2012
Ph Wk: (02) 9318 0824  Fax: (02) 9310 2746
email: turnbullfamily@stassen.com.au
web: www.redwatch.org.au

REDWatch is a residents and friends group covering Redfern Eveleigh Darlington and Waterloo (the same area covered by the Redfern Waterloo Authority). REDWatch monitors the activities of government activities such as the RWA and RWPP and seek to ensure community involvement in all decisions made about the area.

REDWatch meets on the 4th Sunday of the Month at 2pm at the Redfern Community Centre.

A free email update service on Redfern Waterloo issues is also available from turnbullfamily@stassen.com.au